Words that could leave a
tradie jobless. Luckily, however, gaming’s favourite spanner spinner
has numerous hobbies, one of which is, of course, kart racing.
In what is an arguably curious move, rather than gracing the
shiny new big screen/handheld hybrid Switch with its own Mario
Kart game like most every other new bit of hardware Nintendo
has released since the game’s birth on the SNES, the big N has gone
the recycling route. Or maybe that should be ‘rekarting’.
Strip away the ‘Deluxe’ and this is Wii U Mario Kart 8,
which you can see our thoughts on by
clicking these words here. So is that it? Thankfully no.
That ‘Deluxe’ adds some shiny stuff to the pretty cool recipe of
lots of racers, lots of tracks and lots of options, mainly in the
form of what was Wii U DLC. 48 tracks are available from the get-go,
as are the mirror mode and 200cc class (hold onto your innards,
folks...) Inkling Girl and Inkling Boy are a part of the chunkified
42 character roster, and they add a new track to the battle mode.
Ah, the battle mode. Classic battle mode. It’s back, baby in all
its arena-based brilliance, complete with five game modes. Yay!
There are control methods aplenty, using
individual JoyCons via buttons or motion, jamming them into a little
wheel and steering in space original Wii-style, plopping them into
their OEM housing or hitting up the Pro Controller. The latter
‘Smart steering’ and ‘auto accelerate’ basically allow the game to play
itself. They’re designed to assist new (or crappy) players, but when
you can score a podium finish without touching the controller you
have to wonder... Still, despite annoyingly defaulting to on it can
be turned off – but only in-game by pressing '+'. RIP manuals...
Ultimately, MK8D is content
rich and as fun as ever, managing to be both the best big screen AND
handheld iteration of Mario Kart yet. Stick that in your
pipe and, erm, unblock it!