Mario Kart has been around for almost twenty years. It this timeframe, the series has had numerous games. It’s latest edition Mario Kart 8 was released on the Nintendo Wii U last year.
Each new edition of Mario Kart tends to introduce and highlight new features. Mario Kart 8 introduced anti gravity mechanisms that allow players to drive sideways and upside down. The game also introduced a bump speed boost which gives players a speed boost when bumping into other players in certain areas of the track. I enjoyed these new mechanisms as they add a new twist onto racing within the game.
The graphics were upgraded from the previous title as most Mario Kart games have done in the past since most new editions of Mario Kart are released on the new console Nintendo releases. Mario Kart 8 graphics were excellent and colorful. Once again, the series has outdone itself on it’s overall look.
The actual racing within the game feels exciting and fast paced as it has in the past. However, I feel that it has improved itself once again and is much greater than previous Mario Kart games. I felt the controls were much smoother and easier to control and had fun with the fast paced action of racing in the game. I loved the new race tracks and enjoyed racing on the remastered race tracks from previous games that were brought back in Mario Kart 8.
I found the selection of characters in this edition to be the dullest in comparison to pervious editions. When starting the game you begin with the usual characters like Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, etc. The locked characters is where I was disappointed. Most of the locked characters were either one of Bowser’s nine kids or different versions of other characters such as Metal Mario, Gold Peach, etc. Previous Mario Kart games had more unique locked characters that would always make me wonder who they put in this time. Unfortunately, Mario Kart 8 wasn’t able to give me that excitement this time around.
The battle mode was similar to the previous games. The ballon battle works essentially the same way. However, now if a player is eliminated, rather than re-spawning, they become a ghost (invisible form other players) and can attack the non eliminated players, but they can’t receive points for attacking as a ghost. Also, battle’s are now on an actual race course thats also used in races rather than having it’s own battlefield courses. Some players have not enjoyed this but I found it to be better to drive around in a more open area than a constricting battlefield that the previous games had featured.
The online multiplayer was also greatly improved. In the past, it would take between one to three minutes to find a server. In Mario Kart 8, I’ve found that it only takes about five to ten seconds to find and connect to a server. The Server stability was also much better than previous titles.
Overall, I found Mario Kart 8 to be a highly enjoyable racing game. It has shown that Mario Kart can continue to upgrade itself once again to provide a fun and fantastic experience for many previous players and new players of Mario Kart.