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Mario Kart GP is an arcade kart racer by Namco
, quite popular in Japan
but also came out in the America
, that allows you save your progress, unlock bonus content as you complete races, and a camera that allows you to take a picture of yourself portraying the character of your choice. All the old standards are in there, from question mark blocks to the speed-up-mushroom, to the different speed classes and the ability to drift. Putting it in a racing arcade cabinet, though, makes it just a little bit cooler.
If you've ever played a Mario Kart
game before, you'll know what you're getting into here. Get to the end before your opponents, dodging pipes, hitting jumps, and getting power ups along the way. What sets this version apart from other Mario Kart games and, indeed, from many arcade games, is persistence. For 100 yen, you can register your characters progress, giving yourself a name and noting which cups and classes you have defeated. Beat enough of them and you'll unlock new weapons that will randomly appear in Question Mark blocks for you as you circle the course. You are also able to upgrade your racers vehicle, improving the three critical stats of acceleration, top speed, and turning. Once your done with your game, the arcade machine prints out an encoded card with your progress and name printed onto it. Whenever you feel like coming back, just drop your card back into the machine and it recognizes you and all the goodies you've unlocked.
Characters Mario Luigi Peach Yoshi Toad Wario Donkey Kong Bowser Pac-Man Ms. Pac-Man Blinky