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Video of Super Nintendo World’s Mario Kart ride is like being there

Fling AR shells at a giant Bowser and other baddies for a good time

Ana Diaz (she/her) is a culture writer at Polygon, covering internet culture, fandom, and video games. Her work has previously appeared at NPR, Wired, and The Verge.

Since the opening of Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Japan on Feb. 4, visitors have been posting videos and photos of attractions all over the internet. While the posts have left those still in lockdown absolutely salivating, new footage of the theme park at least allows people to appreciate it from afar. Now we have a full look at the new Mario Kart ride, Mario Kart: Koopa’s Challenge, from Universal Park News Today.

The attraction uses augmented reality, so every visitor gets their own Mario-themed headset to play the game as they ride. The ride treats guests to a first-person view of a variety of classic courses like Mario Kart Circuit and Rainbow Road. As people progress from course to course, everyone fires AR shells at Bowser and his underlings to rack up points.

The waiting area is charming, too. The line goes through a model Bowser’s Castle filled with all sorts of fun props. There’s a giant throne — presumably Bowser’s — that has a framed photo of Princess Peach sitting on it, and an award case with all the Mario Cup trophies. That case also features a new cup, which integrates the Universal Pictures logo into the Mario Cup.

Overall, the ride looks fantastic — and for now, I can only dream about experiencing it live in its full glory someday.

The next level of puzzles.

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