Minions, the animated yellow capsule creatures (think sentient Percocet pills, but adorable) from the Despicable Me cinematic universe, now have their own theme park area at Universal Orlando Resort in Florida.
Expanding on the already-existing Despicable Me Minion Mayhem ride, the area encompasses a brand-new attraction, new food-and-beverage offerings, and, of course, bountiful merch.
The marquee addition (replacing the park's Shrek 4-D movie) is Illumination’s Villain-Con Minion Blast, an interactive shooting-gallery game where parkgoers stand on a conveyor belt and fire somewhat heavy blasters at digital targets in an effort, per a Universal press release, "to become a member of the Vicious 6—a notorious group of supervillains from the hit film Minions: The Rise of Gru."
Visitors can record their points using the free Universal Orlando Resort app and build on their progress over time. If you're planning on going, download the app and set up your profile before arriving at the park. The added interactive element, which encourages repeat visits, was pioneered by Universal at the recently opened Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Hollywood.
At Minion Land, YouTuber Kyle Pallo exhaustively chronicled all the cutely menacing goings-on during the attraction's preview period earlier this summer. The game's digital animation was a little glitchy then, but most of the kinks have since been ironed out.
There's also a Minions-themed restaurant, Illumination's Minion Cafe (in the space previously occupied by Classic Monsters Cafe), along with a kiosk selling banana-flavored popcorn, a walk-up window dispensing colorful frozen treats, and Bake My Day, where you can stock up on Insta-friendly Minions-related cupcakes, cookies, and such.
Throw in a souvenir store and appearances by costumed characters, and you've got the lay of the Minion Land.
Don't be surprised if the place isn't as crowded as central Florida's theme parks have been in previous years. As Frommer's Orlando expert Jason Cochran pointed out last month, attendance at Walt Disney World has been down so far this summer. And according to USA Today, because "tourists frequently visit both Universal Orlando Resort and Walt Disney World, analysts say the visitor trends are similarly depressed" at both destinations.
Here's hoping that means you'll spend less time standing in line out in Florida's record-breaking heat and humidity.
Talk about despicable.