The Mario Kart 8 wiki last edited by SpongeBat1 on 06/23/14 01:38PM View full history

Overview

Mario Kart 8 introduces gravity-based track design with vertical surfaces and upside down roads for the usual band of racers to drive on via magnetic wheels. Another new feature is Mario Kart TV which automatically creates a highlight reel of each race for users to share with their friends on Miiverse or YouTube. The Community features introduced in Mario Kart 7 make a return, letting players set up tournaments and group races with an expanded set of custom rules. Up to 12 players are able to compete in the game's online mode, including two local players using the same console. There is also local support for up to four player splitscreen races.

Presentation

The game runs at a native resolution of 720p and refreshes 60 frames per second in singleplayer and two player splitscreen. In three or four player splitscreen, the game runs at 30fps. Mario Kart 8 is the first title in the series to feature live instrumentation for select course themes.

Mario Kart TV

After finishing a race, players are shown an auto-generated clip of highlights from that race. This clip can be edited and shared online via Miiverse and/or uploaded to the user's own YouTube account (in 720p). Players can determine various parameters for the clips such as clip length (30 seconds, one minute, or the entire race), which character the camera follows, and specific race events to showcase such as stunts, item usage, or last minute victories. Slow motion effects can be applied during the editing process. The game stores the last 12 full races which can then be edited and shared at the player's discretion. Mario Kart TV also records Battle Mode matches.

Gameplay

Anti-gravity

The biggest new gameplay feature of Mario Kart 8 is the anti-gravity mechanic which lets players race on the walls or ceiling in certain areas. During these anti-gravity sections, lightweight racers can run into heavyweights and benefit from a speed boost instead of spinning out and grinding to a complete halt. "Spin Boosts" can be used by all racers and can even chained together. Underwater and hang-glider sections both are again heavily featured in Mario Kart 8.

Vehicles

In terms of vehicles, karts and bikes make a return with ATVs (referred to as quads in Europe) jumping into the mix this time as a compromise between the former. Bikes better retain their speed in curves while karts have an advantage on straight passages. The bikes have lost their ability to do wheelies in this game, however. Players can again fully customize their vehicles by choosing various parts like in Mario Kart 7.

Items

Racers can now only ever hold a single item and no longer "bank" one by activating but not releasing it and driving over another item box.Only after the item has been fully exhausted can another one be collected. Coins also return and collecting them increases the racers speed for every additional coin collected (up to ten).

Singleplayer

Grand Prix

Traditional Mario Kart Grand Prix against 11 other racers. Features the traditional 50cc, 100cc, 150cc and Mirror Mode.

Time Trials

In the traditional time trial fashion, players can set personal records and race against their ghost driver and upload that ghost driver online. Special staff ghost data can be downloaded and upon beating said staff ghost, a special Miiverse stamp is awarded.

Multiplayer

Local Grand Prix

For the first time ever, the game's Grand Prix mode can be played by up to four players simultaneously via splitscreen. A full set of 12 racers with a maximum of four human players.

Online Grand Prix

Even the airspace gets crowded.

Mario Kart 8 again features online races for up to 12 players with the option for two local players playing from the same console, like in Mario Kart Wii. Similar to the previous game, race rules can be customized to allow only specific items or no items at all, for example. The online mode allows for worldwide, regional or friend-only races. Voice chat makes its Mario Kart debut and lets players talk to each other in friends-only lobbies (not during gameplay).

Tournaments

In addition to those, there is a dedicated Tournament Mode in which players can even launch custom tournaments. Players can create custom tournaments and specify time and date, item rules (such as "no items" or "frantic mode" which increases the chance to receive rare items), win conditions, teams, speed class, control options, CPU players, skill rank requirements, vehicles types and more. Tournaments can be public or limited to friends and they can also be set up to be recurring on daily, weekly, monthly cycles.

Battle Mode

The Battle Mode in Mario Kart 8 is mechanically based on the classic mode from Super Mario Kart and Mario Kart 64 in which it's all about destroying the other player's balloons in arenas. If a player manages to lose all three of their balloons, they now respawn as a ghost version and can still interfere in the match. However, a ghost player can no longer win. Battle Mode can be heavily customized to determine game length, courses, CPU opponents and various other variables.

Notable is that the courses in Battle Mode are not totally separate arenas but instead altered versions of courses from Grand Prix Mode.

Battle Courses:

Moo Moo Meadows (Wii)Dry Dry Desert (GCN)
Donut Plains 3 (SNES)Toad's Turnpike (N64)
Mario CircuitToad Harbor
Sherbet Land (GCN)Yoshi Valley (N64)

Courses

Mario Kart 8 Cups:

Mushroom CupFlower CupStar CupSpecial Cup
Mario Kart StadiumMario CircuitSunshine AirportCloudtop Cruise
Water ParkToad HarborElectrodromeBone Dry Ruins
Sweet Sweet CanyonTwisted MansionDolphin ShoalsBowser's Castle
Thwomp RuinsShy Guy FallsMount WarioRainbow Road

Retro Cups:

Shell CupBanana CupLeaf CupLightning Cup
Moo Moo Meadows (Wii)Dry Dry Desert (GCN)Wario Stadium (DS)Tick Tock Clock (DS)
Mario Circuit (GBA)Donut Plains 3 (SNES)Sherbet Land (GCN)Piranha Plant Pipeway (3DS)
Cheep Cheep Beach (DS)Royal Raceway (N64)Music Park (3DS)Grumble Volcano (Wii)
Toad's Turnpike (N64)DK Jungle (3DS)Yoshi Valley (N64)Rainbow Road (N64)

Drivers

All the Koopa Kids. All of 'em.

Characters are yet again split into three tiers of light, medium and heavy weight classes which affect acceleration, top speed and other driving properties which will affect the performance in combination with the vehicle selection of the player. When choosing Mii characters, their class depends on the weight that was associated with that character during its creation process in the Mii Maker.

LightMediumHeavy
Baby MarioMarioWario
Baby LuigiLuigiWaluigi
Baby PeachPeachNEW: Pink Gold Peach
Baby DaisyDaisyRosalina
NEW: Baby RosalinaYoshiDonkey Kong
ToadNEW: Ludwig von KoopaBowser
ToadetteNEW: Iggy KoopaMetal Mario
LakituMii (Medium Weight)NEW: Roy Koopa
Shy Guy NEW: Morton Koopa
Koopa Troopa Mii (Heavy Weight)
NEW: Larry Koopa
NEW: Lemmy Koopa
NEW: Wendy Koopa
Mii (Light Weight)

Items

Promotions

Nintendo is launching a couple of customer reward promotions alongside the launch of Mario Kart 8 across all territories, all with minor differences.

Retail Bundles

Firstly, there is the Mario Kart 8 console bundle. In North America, players can purchase a Wii U Deluxe Set that comes with a physical copy of Mario Kart 8, a Mario-themed Wii Remote Plus and a red Wii Wheel for $329.99 while Europe gets the Wii U Mario Kart 8 Premium Pack that comes with a physical copy of the game for €299.

Nintendo of Europe also offers a Limited Edition of the game that comes in a big box with a Spiny Shell figurine. A special offer in Nintendo UK's web shop adds a Mario Kart-themed T-Shirt and keychain to the Limited and Standard Edition for £59.99 and £49.99 respectively. Additionally, they split the console bundle into a Team Mario and Team Luigi offer that includes a Mario or Luigi hat, a Mario or Luigi Wii Remote Plus, a Mario or Luigi-themed Wii U GamePad protector and a physical copy of the Mario Kart 8 Game Guide from Prima for £299.99.

Super Mario Kart Promotion

In Europe, players who purchase Super Mario Kart on the Wii U Virtual Console will receive a £5.49/€7.99 discount if they proceed to buy Mario Kart 8 on the Nintendo eShop before June 30, 2014.

Club Nintendo Free Bonus-Game Promotion

Finally, Nintendo announced a Free Bonus Game offer for Club Nintendo members via a Mario Kart 8-focused Nintendo Direct on April 30, 2014. Players who buy Mario Kart 8 either at retail or on the Wii U eShop and register their game on Club Nintendo until July 31, 2014 will be able to choose between various Wii U games and receive a free eShop download code for their game of choice. In Japan, the promotion entitles players to pick two out of six games (full versions with a timer) which they can play for an entire month for free in addition to getting the chance to buy each for 40% off during the trial period.

Europe

North America

  • New Super Mario Bros. U
  • Pikmin 3
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD
  • Wii Party U

Japan

  • Nintendo Land
  • New Super Mario Bros. U
  • Game & Wario
  • Pikmin 3
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD
  • The Wonderful 101

Reception

On top of being the best-reviewed Mario Kart game in franchise history, Mario Kart 8 also managed to snatch up the title of fastest-selling Wii U game and having the second best franchise launch in the UK. The game managed to sell 1.2 million copies worldwide within the first three days on the market, according to a press release by Nintendo.

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