About The Game
Turn your world upside down with Mario Kart 8, only on Wii U! Engage antigravity mode and race up, down and all around amazing courses, competing against other players whether they’re in the same room or on the other side of the world!
Speed over blue antigravity panels to take the race off the straight and narrow and up astonishing waterfalls, along the sides of buildings, and much more. The rules of the road change in antigravity mode too: bump into rival racers for a Spin Turbo speed boost! With gravity-defying racing, aerial jostles while gliding, and fast-paced underwater competition across 32 new and classic courses, every surface can be a racetrack!
Alongside classic karts and nifty bikes, take to the track on a new kind of vehicle with its own unique handling: the four-wheeled quad! Pick tyres, a chassis and glider to create your perfect ride, whether you want unmatched top speed, lightning-quick acceleration, or the smoothest handling. And just as there’s a vehicle to suit every player, there’s a controller for everyone too – take control with the Wii U GamePad, Wii U Pro Controller, Wii Wheel (with Wii Remote), Wii Remote + Nunchuk or Classic Controller Pro.
Go head-to-head with rivals near and far in a range of game modes. Get four players together for local multiplayer* in Grand Prix, VS Race or Battle modes, or jump into online races for up to 12 drivers. Take part in exciting online tournaments, or create your own: choose the start and end times, tailor the rules to your liking and give out the tournament code for other players to join in!
Share your best racing successes – and your most bitter defeats – with the world through Mario Kart TV. Create a highlight reel showcasing your smooth manoeuvres, high-impact item hits and other action-packed moments, then upload it to YouTube** or Miiverse for other players to see!
I love Mario Kart as a series.
I've loved it since the very first second I played super Mario Kart on my Snes console.
Since that day I've got every single copy of Mario Kart on launch day.
I was very much looking forward to Mario Kart 8 despite the continued inclusion of the bikes (I know that's not going to change now but how I hate the bikes)
The hype surrounding the game was beyond huge but I've learned long ago to detach myself from the hype (With the exception if my own hype for Pikmin 3 and one day I'll be writing the review on how well that hype went)
Lets say this early I didn't find this game to be my Mario Karting perfection.
It isn't my favourite Mario Kart game nor in my top 3 but at the same time it's not my least favourite either.
The main issue most other reviewers ( & a fair few fans) have with the game the balloon battle mode no longer features arenas in their place all battles take place on most of the games normal race tracks.
As with many other aspects of the game I tend to drift slightly away from general opinion.
I quite like the track battles and the vast variety of options and ways to play dependant on the track in question.
I of course still think arenas should have been included in addition to the track option but I have no general issue with them trying something new all the same.
For everything new something's remain the same.
The dreaded Blue Shell!
As just about everything under the sun has been written about Mario kart 8, it's tracks what's new ect I'm not going to take up space typing what everybody knows.
Instead this review will largely be split into 2 sections from here on out what I doesn't quite hook me here / gives me feelings of dislike here and what I do like / love below the next picture.
Firstly after over 60 hours of game time it hasn't grabbed me and pulled me in like many Mario kart games of the past have
I don't like the bikes i didn't like them on the Wii and I won't ever change my mind it's called Mario kart there is plenty of scope of variety within that category.
I'm not the biggest fan of most of the new tracks or a few of the retro choices but I doubt anyone loves them all.
The weapon balancing still isn't quite right (regardless of what Nintendo say) if you have a group of players with almost identical skill the player out in front for the majority of the race will be picking up useless item after useless item they'll in all probability drop from 1st to 4th or worse on the last lap through the pure luck of items given to other players
Unlike many modern gamers I still play retro classics & by that I don't just mean that 1 vc game I bought on the eShop.
At times I perhaps view modern games with a nostalgic view I neither expect modern games to look or play anything like the past.
But for whatever reason those games always drew me in and never left me questioning my gaming devotion, despite the huge number of hours played (mostly with friends online) I've never felt that devotion or love for Mario Kart 8 & I genuinely feel the series will leave me more disappointing with each new game in future lets hope i'm wrong.
The Anti gravity sees you driving up along the sides of the walls, but it never really quite feels like it
Despite my remarks in the last section Mario Kart 8 is a very good game, it looks great it plays well, you'll have plenty to unlock, from karts, tyres, gliders, & Miiverse stamps.(Hopefully Mario Kart 9 will have trophies or achievements)
Time trials are of course an ever present where you can aim for top of the world rankings or just send your best scores to friends via Miiverse to try beat themselves.
Online mode has so many tournaments for you to enter or you can set up your own complete with name and a multitude of various options.
It has it's biggest cast ever (though not my Bowser Jr) and the biggest set of tracks any Mario kart has ever seen (and possibly ever will)
The DLC is priced fantastically priced (DLC including Amiibo is never considered in a main review we'll cover them as separate DLC reviews)
Image courtesy of Nintendo PR
Biggest set of characters and tracks ever made available.
Anti gravity offers some new strategy to game play
Online has so many options anyone could set up their own tournament.
Plenty to unlock.
Miiverse stamps to be earned.
Time trial's can be just as addictive and competitive as years gone by.
Every racer has their own stamp to unlock with many other to earn on top of that
ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT
Bikes are still a thing in a game called Kart (I know many like them but I hate them.
Anti gravity doesn't really let you drive upside down.
The game doesn't need 3 Mario & 3 peach characters the 2 dlc additions should have been new characters.
Weapon balancing still isn't where it should be and those at the front are often unfairly punished 2 corners from the finish line.
Image courtesy of Nintendo PR
It's not my favourite Mario kart, I dislike many of the new tracks, I'll always despise bikes & shake my head in disappointment (at Nintendo not the player) when I see someone using the Mercedes DLC!
But despite all of that the game largely delivers, the online options easily make it the best Mario kart ever for competitive players, Miiverse is the perfect place for time trial screens.
It's not without faults the lack of battle mode arenas clearly upsets a fair few, the re skin of Mario & peach 3 times is a lazy waste (& they have baby forms too)
I want to love the game and immerse myself in the game more than I do but I just cant. do that.
A review copy of the game was purchased by Video Game Legacy and reviewed in accordance with the review policy.