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Nintendo is bringing its characters to Universal theme parks

The Japanese company is hungry to improve its fortunes, and now its announced a partnership with Universal to produce amusement park attractions featuring Nintendo characters.

Nintendo has cut a deal with Universal Parks & Resorts to create theme park attractions based on Nintendo characters, though it's yet unclear what form those attractions will take or when they will open.

This is in line with Nintendo's ongoing efforts to spread its iconic characters and games to new audiences, exemplified most recently by the company's partnership with DeNA to make mobile games based on Nintendo properties.

"We want more people to become familiar with Nintendo IP," company chief Satoru Iwata told TIME earlier this year when asked about the company's expansion into the mobile market.

The Kyoto-based company recently swung to profits after several years of operating at a loss, though its change in fortune is due (at least in part) to a favorable exchange rate.

This new deal with Universal will lead to the first appearance of licensed Nintendo attractions in major theme parks, though the topic has been broached before; when asked in 2013 by ABC News about the company's interest in creating a Super Mario Bros. theme park, Nintendo frontman Shigeru Miyamoto demurred, noting that "certainly, it's not an impossibility."

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