• Universal Unveils the Epic Universe Preview Center

Universal Unveils the Epic Universe Preview Center

Luiz Alberto H.

Created: Jun 21, 2024

Last Updated: Jun 25, 2024

Universal Unveils the Epic Universe Preview Center

This Epic Store waits for you at Universal Citywalk

Ladies and Gentlemen, we can finally visit Epic Universe.

Sort of…

The Epic Universe Preview Center finally opened on June 13, 2024 at Universal Citywalk Orlando, promising to give guests their first sneak peek at the theme park coming in 2025. You will see details of the new lands, previews of some of the rides, and, yes, there is lots of (epic) merchandise for you to bring home and start filling your wardrobe with Epic Universe stuff so you are ready for next year.

universal citywalk (1).webp

I’ll be honest, I haven’t been there yet, but the place does look cool. They have AG features inside the store, and you can download the official Epic Universe Preview Center app to make some of the models come to life. I’m not sure how it works, but it sounds pretty cool. I don’t know why we need to download yet another app on our phones and Universal just doesn’t use the Universal Orlando Resort app, but it is what it is.

The big star of the show is a huge park model located right in the middle of the store. I saw some pictures and YouTube videos of it, and it looks awesome. This isn’t a tiny model you make on a rainy evening; no, it’s incredibly detailed and takes up a lot of store space, featuring every land, many rides and even small piranha plants and Goombas in Super Nintendo World. It looks great.

epic universe universal.webp
Universal Orlando© - Epic Universe

You can also find t-shirts and merchandise based on the new lands and areas like the Ministry of Magic, Dark Universe, and, yes, Super Nintendo World. I really want to buy my Mario & Luigi shirt, so I need to go there sometime in the next month or so. This is also the first time ever that there is Super Nintendo World merchandise inside Universal Orlando. I was at Universal about five weeks ago and couldn’t even find a simple Yoshi plush toy.

Let's ENHANCE the Preview Center

You know what would be fun? If the Preview Center was a little bit inspired by the Star Wars Launch Bay at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Make it a place where you can meet some characters from time to time, like Mario and Dracula. I love the idea of having a huge scale model of the theme park there, and, of course, merchandise is expected, but a few special touches like that would be really cool to see.

I haven’t tried any of the AG features, but can you imagine if Universal went with a VR app as well? We could enter the store, put on a virtual headset, and then walk around Epic Universe and preview the rides like that. Sure, that’s a long shot that’s expensive and needs a ton of work, but it would also be so cool to see. I’d love to see theme parks like Universal give VR more of a chance, especially when it comes to previewing rides and whole theme parks that we are just so excited for.

isle of berk epic universe universal 4.webp
Universal Orlando© - Epic Universe

365 days to go?

Epic Universe is expected to open sometime in 2025. There were initial rumors - and even promotional pieces - suggesting that the theme park would be ready by July, but I honestly doubt that. If I had to bet on an exact month, I’d go with November, just in time for Thanksgiving! Theme parks take a lot of time (and money), and an initial opening date is always hard to get right. Let's give them some time and let them cook up the best theme park for us all.

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