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Super Nintendo World’s groundbreaking ceremony is weird and wonderful

Mario hats and gloves plus business suits sure are a look

Construction on Super Nintendo World has officially begun, and footage of the groundbreaking ceremony shows just how committed Nintendo and Universal Studios Japan are to providing an authentic experience. Accompanied by a life-size Mario, major figures from both companies took to the stage earlier today to introduce the park in the best way possible.

We’ve never seen a dancing Mario — with music from the games and everything! — introduce an otherwise serious business event before, but Nintendo has never been interested in doing things like anyone else. The whole stage show is an homage to Mario’s sidescrolling days, replete with Goomba-squashing and coin block-smashing.

After Mario’s brief number, Universal Studios Japan CEO J.L. Bonnier spoke about Super Nintendo World’s “complete immersive experience,” which is set to include rides, restaurants and retail opportunities. It’s important to mention that he gave his rehearsed speech about the attraction while wearing an oversized Mario hat and gloves — as did the rest of the gathered speakers.

We’ve seen the famed Shigeru Miyamoto don Mario gear often enough for that not to be a surprise, but it’s hard not to be slightly distracted by the getup when Mark Woodbury, vice chairman of Universal Parks and Resorts, follows Bonnier to reveal one of Super Nintendo World’s rides. There will be a major attraction based on Mario Kart, Woodbury said, his glove dwarfing the microphone in his hand.

All three men wrapped the event by inviting Mario back on stage to strike a pose, followed by a burst of confetti and yapping piranha plants ringing in construction. This may be the last we see of Super Nintendo World for awhile, since it won’t open at Universal Studios Japan until 2020. The image of these men cosplaying as Mario will stick in our minds until then.

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