When you’re porting old games onto a new system within one month of launch, warning sirens may start blaring.
But when you take an already fantastic game, which didn’t reach it’s full, deserved and intended audience, and you add to it in meaningful, exciting new ways, it becomes something bigger and better.
And, hey, it’s a Mario Kart within the first month of the Switch’s lifecycle. Arguably the best Mario Kart to date. That is more than a cause for celebration.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is essentially the Wii U original, fully patched up and all the DLC. But there’s also some awesome new features which make it the definitive edition of the game.
Starting with the basics, you have the five different racing tiers, starting with 50cc and ending with the wild, crazy, and insanely unfair 200cc. Once you’ve chosen that, you have a whopping 12 Cups to choose from, each with four different races. Yeah, there’s 48 different races. Way more than any other Mario Kart.
Oh, and there’s 42 possible racers as well. Including some newcomers like Splatoon’s Inkling Girl and Boy, as well as King Boo, Dry Bones and Bowser Jr. The karts can then be customised, switching out the tires, the gliders and the body of the car or bike.
Once you’re on the court, the action gets fast and furious. You can now hold two items at once, something which was absent from Mario Kart 8 and takes us back to the days of Double Dash – previously, my favourite Mario Kart.
The Boo Ghost has also returned, enabling you to steal the item of an opponent and claim it for your own. The feather also returns, which allows the Kart to jump and escape danger. From some items anyway. That damn Blue Shell is going to get you wherever you try to go.
Deluxe also gives us a new Battle Mode, which adds five different modes , such as the Renegade Roundup and the classic balloon battle. There’s even another nod to Double Dash with the Bob-omb Blast.
And that’s what’s so perfect about Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, it’s a marriage of every great Mario Kart game, brought together in one unmissable, tight package. It’s a Mario Kart you can play on the big screen in 1080p and take on the go just as easily for fast, fluid action.
It’s effortlessly addictive and consistently entertaining. You can find yourself diving into it for a few quick laps, or going on a deeper, several hour run. However you choose to play, Mario Kart will accommodate you and ensure your time is well spent.
With a more stable, secure, and populated online arena, more Amiibo support, and everything else you already love from a fantastic game, not only is Mario Kart 8 Deluxe an essential Switch title, you should definitely Double Dip if you’re a Wii U veteran.
I can’t put it down.
+ Tons of content
+ Beautiful look and sound
+ Great online or off
– Difficulty borders on the unfair at higher ranks
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
9.5 out of 10
Tested on Switch