Universal’s Fantastic Worlds - What Do You Want/Expect From the New Park?

February 15, 2019, 11:23 AM

In regards to Universal Orlando’s upcoming 4th theme park, let’s say YOU have been tasked by Universal Creative to design four opening day “worlds” to anchor the new park, with two more worlds to come a few years later. What worlds would you include and what attractions, restaurants, shops, etc. would be a part of each world?

Replies (24)

February 15, 2019, 12:10 PM

I’d like the Ministry of Magic and themed areas or rides for How to Train Your Dragon and Kung Fu Panda.

What I really want though is Lord of the Rings, so I can walk through the Shire and ride a cart ride in Moria while being chased by a Balrog.

February 15, 2019, 5:19 PM

A grand opening in 2024.

February 15, 2019, 6:36 PM

Announced in 2025.

February 15, 2019, 11:04 PM

I'll start with the easy answers and I'll focus on IPs, because these days that's what gets the ball rolling and the attractions just follow.
I would expect a Nintendo World with separate lands themed to Mario/Mushroom Kingdom, Donkey Kong, and a 3rd property (I'll guess Starfox for now, based on rumors of Pokemon and Zelda going into the older parks eventually). I'd also expect at least one nearby undeveloped land plot reserved for future Nintendo expansion. Rides would include Mario Kart, DK mine train, a simulator if Starfox, and another Mario ride themed explicitly to match the upcoming Mario movie.
Then a DreamWorks Animation World with at least 3 lands based on: Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, How to Train Your Dragon, Trolls, and Madagascar. I wouldn't be surprised if some of these attractions largely copy what Universal already did for these properties in Singapore and Hollywood.
After that it's more tricky. The other in-house animation studio, illumination, might be able to support a "World", but their only property that could support it's own land I think is Minions which already has a ride at USF. If they did a Minions land anyway and a combined land for Sing & Secret Life of Pets it could work. Unfortunately, the studio is just doing sequals in the near future, no new IPs.
Universal Monsters could make a great attraction or even Land, but I'm not sure what constitutes a "World" and if it makes sense to invest all that much in an area that's not kid friendly. If it were up to me Dracula's castle would be used for a major attraction.
I would also love to see Fantastic Beasts and various global Ministries of Magic/MACUSA. Hopefully this property is still World-worthy after the uninspired latest film. Animatronic Beasts and awe-inspiring set design are a must here.
Lord of the Rings would obviously make a great theme park land but I (and I think many others) will have stopped being really excited by the films for 2 decades before the park opens so it may not be a worthwhile investment. I know the recent movies had good box office, but it wasn't the same cultural phenomenon as before. We'll see if the new Amazon series changes that.
I have no idea if HBO ever sold them park right before, but Game of Thrones would make a great land or World as well.
I'll also mention some rumors that I don't want to see: Star Trek or Jurassic World (just mash it up with what's in IoA already).

February 16, 2019, 6:04 AM

A hub and spoke layout with a center icon that will feature nightly fireworks, fountains and HD mapping imaging.

February 16, 2019, 6:47 AM

Question for the OP Keith how do you know that Universal Orlando's new park will officially have 4 themed worlds? Is this a educated guess or is this a official confirmed statement by Universal Orlando? Anyways my idea for the fourth gate are.....

Super Nintendo World
Lord Of The Rings/Middle Earth
Classic Universal Monsters
Retro Throwback World-Least likely to happen
Star Trek

PS I was going to put in Jurassic World but it seems like it's a safe bet that Jurassic Park over at IOA will be transformed into Jurassic World if you look at the walls going up their painted in JW colors.

Edited: February 16, 2019, 8:49 AM

I agree with Halo in that we have no idea that they want to divide it into sections. I think the biggest mistake Disney is making with Star Wars was the decision to not make Galaxy's Edge a theme park of itself. If, and I find it doubtful, that they did get the Lord of the Rings, they may consider a park that substantial is made of of Middle-earth. I seriously doubt it though. I am all for a billion dollar Fantastic Journey style Delta House ride through in flounder's car in Animal House, though.

February 16, 2019, 11:52 AM

In the original concept art for CityWalk I seem to remember a Delta House bar ... Which is BRILLIANT!

February 16, 2019, 5:22 PM

@Halo: OrlandoParkStop podcast has a lot of Unnofficial Universal information and have been pretty on the money about their new projects.

But when you think about it MK and IOA opened with five themed lands/islands, not counting the man in street/port. 4 makes sense for FW since each “World” will be much larger and expansive than most theme park lands.

Edited: February 16, 2019, 5:50 PM

>>>I think the biggest mistake Disney is making with Star Wars was the decision to not make Galaxy's Edge a theme park of itself.

Although I think SWL as its being delivered is clearly too small, making a Star Wars Only park I think would be a disaster.

There's a reason why every fast food joint these days has a salad option, and some sort of veggie option - even if the rest of the menu is filled with fatty meaty products.

A group with a veggie or person on a health kick won't go to a fast food joint where this option doesn't exist... They can when there's at least a token product for them to have.

A family where one member hates star wars probably won't go to a star wars park - or will go there a lot less. But at a Magic Kingdom style park there's still adventureland/Frontierland/fantasyland/Tomorrowland/etc

February 17, 2019, 3:38 PM

Hmm. How many people who have never seen Avatar have ridden the rides? How many non-Potterheads spend all day with the family members dressed all in robes? For those that hate Star Wars, there are the other four gates that last I checked were still very overcrowded. I have said that people are massively underestimating the popularity of the new land. It is going to be much, much greater than Potter, mark my words. Now you are going to have one of four parks that will basically be closed off due to capacity which is next to EPCOT.

Edited: February 18, 2019, 3:38 PM

So let me get this straight all of this is just speculation and rumors saying that the fourth Universal Orlando theme park will only have 4 worlds. That’s not a official statement but we can just simply call it the strongest rumor. Their could be 3 themed worlds, their could be 5 themed worlds or 6 like DBCooper said. As a matter of fact Warner Bros May object To Universal Orlando to not use Fantastic Worlds as it’s new park name. I read this over on screamscape that Universal Orlando has back up names just in case if the fourth park doesn’t get called fantastic worlds. We really don’t know what’s coming OFFICIALLY. We are just making guesses.

I’m hoping of what DB Cooper said 6 themed worlds if theirs enough room from what I understand the park will be setup when it’s built to have room for expansion lands down the line in the future.

Edited: February 18, 2019, 6:05 PM

It’s all rumors until officially announced. This is hypothetical - what would you like to see at Universal’s Fantastic/Epic Worlds?

February 18, 2019, 8:43 PM

What would I like to see? Now that opens up quite a lot. I would never in a billion years get it, mind you. I would like a Middle-earth where I get a Shire and Pracing Pony hotel that I can stay in and hike to Mordor with a roller coaster in Moria and a river raft ride down the Anduin. You could follow that up with a ride on the back of an eagle ala Avatar. Then a land that is modeled after the classic gothic monster movies with a giant Dracula's castle. Go ahead and stick a Nintendo section in it that will draw crowds away from the other two sections that I will spend all of my time at.

February 25, 2019, 1:42 PM

Lord Of The Rings & Star Trek are the least likely to happen but I hope somehow they comeback on the table at the earliest when should we hear about possible themed lands or worlds for the untitled third park? 2020? 2021? Or sometime after Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge opens? At least the official name for a 3rd theme park?

March 8, 2019, 4:46 PM

I don't understand why UC would consider a classic horror/monster land. Parents with small children would have to, make a decision about paying $150 a piece to visit a park that features an area that they can't visit.

March 8, 2019, 8:45 PM

Parents with small children should go to Disney IMHO. Let's keep Universal for the big kids.

March 8, 2019, 10:51 PM

Universal’s marketing in the last few years has been targeting kids and families who may have outgrown some other unnamed vacation resort. I would put their target audience at 8 and up. So I don’t think some dark rides on scary the level of Mansion/Mummy/Mystic Manor would cause too many complaints. Also would be a good place to add outdoor thrilling coasters.

March 9, 2019, 3:08 PM

Do you think that their is a possibility that their could be 6 Themed Worlds like DB Cooper mentioned or will the count stay at 4? Again we don’t know how many worlds will show up during the opening of the fourth gate. But strongest rumors point to Nintendo, DreamWorks, Fantastic Beasts, and Classic Monsters according to what I’ve heard at InsideUniversal. I don’t know maybe things could change. I would want a Sci-Fi World to be featured at the fourth gate something like a mixture of Star Trek, or Battlestar Gallatica, or even resurrect Terminator a new movie is coming out anyway later this year. I hope the throwback rides like DBCooper mentioned will be on the back burner.

March 11, 2019, 4:32 PM

With 4 “Worlds” (or brands) I would guess there’d be around 10 differently themed mini-lands which is a lot for a new park. I think there could be more than the 12 rides that IOA and Shanghai opened with, especially since some of them will be cloned from other parks (like Mario Kart).

Edited: March 13, 2019, 2:13 PM

Tick, tick, tick ...

With the WDW property exploding with new attractions, shows and other experiences being added at Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disney's Animal Kingdom and Disney Springs -- along with the classic popular attractions and the special events planned for the fiftieth anniversary (2021) -- UO's lovers, dreamers and fanboys may turn out to be late to the party. Better get serious and break some ground soon or by the time these blue-sky concepts become construction projects and (finally) start to welcome guests, UO could be only a speck in Disney's rear view mirror.

It's funny, ya know? I remember a crowd of fire breathing haters that used to roam these parts complaining how slow Disney was when it came to building new attractions. It suddenly seems like the mouse timed things just right.


March 13, 2019, 5:05 PM

Well, to be fair, Disney tends to announce things and completes them years and years later. Universal seems to hold back the announcements and appears to complete the projects much faster. This Hagrid coaster certainly seems to have had a fast turn around. I, for one, am very happy with the place Universal is at and where they are going. Are they ever going to beat Disney in attendance? No. They will not. Is it much more fun to go there than Disney? Yes. It is. For two reasons. The crowds and Unlimited Express Pass. If all of a sudden people swarmed to Universal like they do to Disney, it would cease to be as much fun as it is. I can do so, so much more with my time and money at Universal than I can at Disney since they made FP+. Once Star Wars opens it will be even worse. Maybe Disney will bite the bullet and find a better solution. Maybe they will finally make the fifth gate. They really could make a sixth gate. I will say this: I can't wait to experience Galaxy's Edge, but when I do it will be three days there and three days at Universal to get the overwhelming taste of the crowds out of my mouth.

Edited: March 13, 2019, 6:11 PM

TH, as one of those former fire breathing "haters" I know you're just trolling, but what the heck I'll bite and show you a little attention.

Disney deserved the disdain of the fire-breathers for doing extremely little to upgrade their parks for well over a decade during the waning years of the Eisner regime. Building Disney-MGM studios, DCA, DSP, and DAK on shoestring budgets when they could have done so much better was crass greed at it's best. Sure they were good parks, but compared to what Disney could have done and what their budget allowed, Disney totally let their fan base down, and obviously took them for granted.

Attendance at the lesser parks in the Disney resorts has hovered at 60% of the magic Kingdom/Disneyland attendance for decades. Why? Because the bean counters at Disney figured they could turn a good profit with a minimal investment in the lesser parks simply because the Magic Kingdom/Disneyland parks were so appealing that people gave them a pass. They even cut back on ride maintenance (How many people had to die on BTM in order for Disney to stop being so cheap?) and infrastructure improvements.

And you dare imply that the Mouse timed it just right? Really? Your typical Stars Wars fan over the age of 30 would probably tell you that the Star Wars investments are about 2 decades overdue. How long has Disney owned the rights to Star Wars? And they had to put out more movies to increase demand for the Star Wars lands in their parks? Yeah. Right. Doesn't pass the smell test in the least.

DHS has been a 1/4 day park for several years now. Maybe Disney could try adding a few rides before they close rides to do the expansions.

DCA was a joke for years.

DSP was and still is an embarrasment when compared to most of Disney's parks.

DAK was a 1/2 day park for years until the blue aliens were added.

Epcot was starting to get so hollow and old that Disney fans went gaga over a re-theme of a ride to the Frozen theme. No rides added, just a re-theme. How pathetic!

So, now that Disney has stopped acting like Scrooge McDuck and is putting some profit back in the parks with new rides and transportation systems we're supposed to give them a pass? I'm still in the Clark Griswold frame of mind when he fould Wally World closed for maintenance. "We watch his program. We buy his toys, we go to his movies, he owes us! Doesn't he owe us, ha? He owes the Griswolds right?"

Disney owed their loyal fans something better, and they are finally delivering - to their credit. And the "haters" are silent now primarily because Disney is doing right by their fan base. Seems like the "fire-breathing haters" have more integrity than the Disney management team did for years.

March 13, 2019, 9:56 PM

Hmm. I just hate Fast Pass Plus.

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