A little bit of a warning here at the beginning. This won’t be a long, in-depth review of the why’s and where’s, ins and outs of Mario Kart 8. I know some of you are breathing a sigh of relief (or have already scrolled down to the score), and I have a good reason for this:
It’s Mario Kart…and it’s effing FUN.
I am assuming by reading this you are already a Mario Kart fan and know the gist of it. You pick your favorite Mario character, your mode of transport, wheel type and glider, then proceed to let a string of obscenities fly out of your mouth that would make Samuel L. Jackson smile in approval.
You think I am joking? I wish you could hear a tiny bit of what it is like to play with me but I will just give you a small typed out sampling.
-Peach/Daisy/Rosalina can suck various parts of me
-Jailbait bit** (a favorite of my gf)
-Donkey fu**ing Kong
-Bowser, you fat fu**
-Eat my dick (this is said as I cross the finish line in first)
This is what happens when a grown man plays Mario his whole life and gets tired when he keeps getting red shells in his ass and only gets a coin from a box when he is in first.
The first Wii U Mario Kart game is loaded with 32 tracks consisting of 16 new tracks and 16 classic tracks from every previous Kart game including the hell that is Rainbow Road from Mario Kart 64. The new tracks are as imaginative as ever and make good use of the underwater and hovercraft effects that make you pine for the F-Zero sequel that will never be. Tons of unlockable characters, karts, tires and gliders await as you win each racing class. The character variation is nothing out of the ordinary for a Mario Kart game, but does it really need to be?
I only had a few hiccups with online play at first, but since then, it has been smooth. Online is where you really test how good you are. You may think you are a drift master until you come across some guy in China that shows you know nothing, Jon Snow. It is like when I would play Tekken 3 at the arcade and absolutely own people…then a ten year old picks Eddy Gordo and whips my ass.
Don’t worry about being shoehorned into playing Mario Kart in a way you are not comfortable with. The game supports the Gamepad, Pro Controller, Wii Remote (for motion driving) and Wii Remote and Nunchuck. I am old school and have to use an analog stick and R trigger for power sliding where my girlfriend uses her Wii Remote and motion steering. The Gamepad screen has multiple features like seeing the track map, a horn and off-screen play. Yep, if you are playing two-player and have to take a poop, you can keep the game going. Believe me, this will happen.
Like I said earlier, it’s Mario Kart. You know if you have enjoyed previous installments, you will love this one. It is beautiful to look at and the variety in tracks make sure that even after you have played them all, there is plenty of fun left to be had by going back again. I believe that combined with the lineup Nintendo showed at E3, Mario Kart 8 could be the beginning of a Wii U redemption.
Sorry for the cursing.