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Insider’s Guide to Games at Universal Orlando Resort


If you share this author’s deep-rooted love for gaming, you know that the term extends far beyond video games. Gaming culture embraces a wide array of pastimes, from board games and card games to the world of theme parks. While it might seem a bit niche, major theme parks like Universal Orlando Resort have been aware of this for ages and have made strides to cater to gaming enthusiasts.

Whether it’s expansive areas like the already popular SUPER NINTENDO WORLD or the Universal Orlando Resort App (which we’ll dive into shortly), there are numerous ways to play and more than you’d think, though we wouldn’t blame you for the oversight. Fortunately, we’ve put together a breakdown for those wanting to get their game on while visiting Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure. This guide goes over what can be found at each park and even some helpful tips for leveling up and maximizing your gaming experience where applicable.

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Interactive Attractions

World Expo

MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack

MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack
MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack

One of the most competitive attractions for guests is MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack. Riders join as the MIB’s newest recruits in a training program that becomes a real mission after an alien ship crash-lands in New York City.

MEN IN BLACK Alien Attack is a fan-favorite shooter-style ride where guests collect points throughout the attraction via its various targets. The accumulated points from each vehicle are then averaged to determine whether you’re Bug Bait (less than 100,000), Cosmically Average (100,000 – 150,000), or a Galaxy Defender (over 150,000). Pro tip: we have an in-depth guide for those wanting to max out their score at 999,999.

Minion Land

Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast

Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast E-Liminator X Blaster
Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast E-Liminator X Blaster

Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast offers a unique experience that utilizes a motion-based pathway and handheld blaster. Guests navigate the Villain-Con tradeshow floor as they join the Vicious 6 with their E-Liminator Blaster, using an assortment of weapons to rise through the ranks of bad behavior.

Although it might initially appear as just another shooter-style attraction, this ride is anything but. Gamers can use the Universal Play option in the Universal Orlando Resort app to track their scores and earn trophies, as well as add-ons to customize their blasters.


New York

Palace Theater Arcade

Palace Theater Arcade
Palace Theater Arcade
Palace Theater Arcade
Palace Theater Arcade

Of course, if we’re talking “games,” arcades are on the docket. Palace Theater Arcade in Universal Studios Florida is more than just a fancy facade. The pay-to-play arcade is themed as a grand movie theater.

Palace Theater Arcade features a fun variety of new and classic arcade games. After putting credit on a play card, guests can enjoy the likes of claw machines, pinball, air hockey, racing simulators, and more. While arcades may not be the primary reason for visiting a theme park, this one is definitely worth a visit to cool down and enjoy a refreshing break. It’s also not uncommon to find this writer pairing a Guitar Hero jam session within Palace Theater’s walls alongside a ride on Revenge of the Mummy.

Marvel Super Hero Island

Kingpin’s Arcade

Palace Theater Arcade
Palace Theater Arcade

Guests eager to test their luck can visit Kingpin’s Arcade, owned by one of Marvel’s most notorious villains. Enter from the streets of Marvel Super Hero Island, the exit of Doctor Doom’s Fear Fall, or the Cafe 4 entrance and purchase a play card to enjoy a variety of games.

Kingpin’s Arcade stands out as a premier destination for arcade enthusiasts, thanks to its expansive selection of games and immersive theming. Not only is this venue substantially larger with more games to enjoy, but it genuinely feels like a hideout that pays tribute to some of Marvel’s most villainous figures. Inside, you’ll see banners depicting comic versions of popular villains like Red Skull, Baron Zemo, and The Leader. Guests will also catch a look at the Lord of Latveria’s throne as they enter from Doctor Doom’s Fear Fall.

Carnival Games

Springfield: Home of the Simpsons

Simpsons Games

Both Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure feature carnival-style games throughout their parks. In Springfield, classic games like hammer strength, ball toss, balloon popping, and whack-a-mole receive a unique twist, featuring themes like Mr. Burns’ Radioactive Rings and Wac-A-Rat, inspired by Bart and Lisa’s favorite show, Itchy and Scratchy. Winning offers prizes such as a plush Blinky the Three-Eyed Fish, Radioactive Man, or a Sideshow Bob wig.

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park Games

Jurassic Park Carnival Games Prizes
Jurassic Park Carnival Games Prizes

At Islands of Adventure, guests in Jurassic Park will find traditional carnival games themed after aspects from the Jurassic Park and Jurassic World franchises. Guests can test their skills at DNA Sequencer, a novice balloon-popping game, or Target Training, where players use an air cannon to knock down a tower of cans (keep an eye out for the Barbasol can Easter egg). There’s also Hammond’s Hot Shots, a dinosaur-themed hoop game. Guests can take home prizes like a shiny dino plush.

Toon Lagoon

Toon Lagoon Games

Toon Lagoon Games
Toon Lagoon Games

Toon Lagoon Games offers a delightful selection of classic carnival games similar to those found across Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure. Favorites like Tub Toss, water gun races, and the ever-popular Whack-a-Mole feature more traditional themes yet boast some of this writer’s favorite prizes. Located close to Marvel Super Hero Island, guests can win basketballs themed with Groot or other prizes that gaming fans would love, like a plush Reptar, Minions, and even E.T.

Coming Soon — Epic Universe

How to Train Your Dragon — Isle of Berk

Fyre Drill

Fyre Drill at Epic Universe's How to Train Your Dragon – Isle of Berk
Fyre Drill at Epic Universe’s How to Train Your Dragon – Isle of Berk

Opening in 2025, How to Train Your Dragon – Isle of Berk at Epic Universe will be a land where the entire family can step into a fantastical world where Vikings and dragons live in harmony! In Fyre Drill, guests are invited to play during an interactive boat ride where every member of the family can partake in a friendly competition with onboard water cannons that shoot 28-foot streams of water to take out flame-like targets and even competing boats.


Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge

Mario Kart: Bowser's Challenge in Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood
Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge in SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Universal Studios Hollywood

Coming in 2025, SUPER NINTENDO WORLD in Epic Universe is bringing Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge to Universal Orlando Resort. Guests team up with Princess Peach, Luigi, and our hero, Mario, in a cutting-edge attraction that uses specialized goggles, putting you directly into the game! Riders compete against Team Bowser, collecting coins and tossing shells at opponents while skillfully dodging obstacles in this thrilling race. Their coin collection and overall score are recorded via SUPER NINTENDO WORLD’s Power-Up Bands.

We were able to check out the hit attraction at Universal Studios Hollywood and look forward to its premiere at Universal Orlando Resort next year.

Power-Up Band activities

Power-Up Bands from Super Nintendo World inside Universal Studios Hollywood
Power-Up Bands from SUPER NINTENDO WORLD inside Universal Studios Hollywood

It’s worth noting that to fully engage with the interactive activities at SUPER NINTENDO WORLD, guests need to acquire the land’s innovative Power-Up Bands. Available in six different styles – Mario, Luigi, Peach, Daisy, Toad, and Yoshi – these bands function similarly to a mix between the Wizarding World of Harry Potter’s interactive wands and Volcano Bay’s TapuTapu. While these bands are sold separately, they enhance the immersive experience of the land significantly. However, guests can still enjoy racing in Mario Kart: Bowser’s Challenge and exploring SUPER NINTENDO WORLD without a band.

Question Mark Block at SUPER NINTENDO WORLD in Universal Studios Hollywood
Question Mark Block from SUPER NINTENDO WORLD inside Universal Studios Hollywood

SUPER NINTENDO WORLD’s interactive activities vary from hitting question-mark blocks to slot machines (both of which grant players digital coins) and even activities that reward players with virtual character stamps (which are, in turn, worth even more coins). The more coins gathered by players, the greater their overall score, which creates a fun and competitive experience for guests of all ages.

As excited as we are about this aspect of Orlando’s SUPER NINTENDO WORLD, we’re looking forward to an even bigger mini-game.

Bowser Jr. Shadow Showdown

Bowser Jr. Shadow Showdown in Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood
Bowser Jr. Shadow Showdown in SUPER NINTENDO WORLD at Universal Studios Hollywood

Bowser Jr. has stolen the Golden Mushroom and locked it away in his fortress. To reclaim it, players must collect three keys by overcoming interactive challenges set by his minions throughout the Mushroom Kingdom, creating an experience reminiscent of a live-action Mario Party. Here are the key challenges we can expect:

  • Goomba Crazy Crank – knock the Goomba off the roller by spinning the crank as fast as possible
  • Koopa Troopa POWer Punch – swipe your Power-Up Band at the right moment to hit a POW block, sending a turtle shell up a warp pipe, thereby taking out a passing Koopa Troopa
  • Piranha Plant Nap Mishap – turn off all the alarm clocks before Petey Piranha wakes up from his nap
  • Thwomp Panel Panic – flip every blue question-mark-block panel to a yellow exclamation-point-block one (in the right order) before the Thwomp strikes
  • Bob-omb Kaboom Room – solve the coin puzzle before the Bomb-omb goes off

Once players have collected all three keys, they will be granted access to Bowser Jr. Shadow Showdown. This interactive virtual reality game involves players using their whole bodies as they duck, jump, and swat in small groups while confronting Bowser Jr. and his flying Clown Car. Super Nintendo World’s final boss battle promises a different kind of attraction than the company’s typical fare. Victory against Bowser Jr. not only earns you additional coins but also bragging rights on the leaderboards.

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About Sean Pagnotti

Sean is an Orlando geek of most trades. Growing up with the theme parks as his backyard, he developed a passion not just for the industry, but also for helping others get their best experience from the city. Aside from travelling annually with his wife, Sean can be found sketching in his drawing book, crafting the next cocktail from his bar, and binge-watching his favorite shows.