Review by bladedragon234
"One of the Best DS Games Out There"
Mario Kart DS was the first game that I got when I bought my DS. You've most likely heard of it, and if you haven't, you must've been living under a rock for the past year >.> If you haven't bought it yet, you don't know what you're missing out on! If you own a DS go buy this now! If you don't, go buy a DS Lite and Mario Kart DS! I was kind of scared that one game wouldn't keep me occupied until the release date of the next game I wanted to get... But I was wrong!
Single Player- 10/10
This game is wonderful... It has a great amount of modes that will keep you occupied for a long, long time. First it has single player mode. It includes Grand Prix, Time Trials, Vs., Battle, and Missions.
Grand Prix lets you choose from different skill levels and speeds. It has 50cc, 100cc, 150cc, and 150cc Mirror. Once you've chosen the level you wish to play at, you will choose you character and the kart you wish to use. In the beginning of the game, you'll have a certain amount of characters and karts to use. As you progress and beat more levels, you'll unlock more characters and karts. This game has loads of unlockables, from new characters to new karts... Now, once you've decided which character and which kart you are going to compete with, you'll have to choose which cup you're going to compete in. When you first start, you'll only have two cups to choose from, the Nitro Mushroom Cup, and the Retro Shell Cup. But once you beat these cups, you'll unlock more to play. In the Nitro Cup, they have a total of four cups, and in the Retro, they also have four. That makes a total of eight cups. Each cup has four tracks. That makes for a total of 32 tracks for each level, which is a great amount of tracks overall.
In Time Trials, you'll try to get your best time on a track of your time. There won't be any other racers or any items in this mode, it's just driving your best to get your fastest time around the track in three laps (Five for Baby Park). In time trials, there are also staff ghosts. Staff ghosts are the recorded best times of the staff of Mario Kart DS. To unlock a certain staff ghost, you must come within a certain time of their best time. When they are unlocked, you'll be able to race them, and try to beat them. (You won't be able to bump into them or send items at them) Beating them is a bit of a challenge, but still fun to see if you could beat a staff member of MKDS at a race.
Vs. Mode is similar to Grand Prix, only you'll be able to choose the tracks you want to race on, and you can change between different Cups. (I.E., racing in a track that is apart of the Mushroom cup, then racing at a track that is part of the Shell cup). You'll be racing against seven other computers and there will be items. Also, this mode does not end at four races. It goes as long as you wish, or you could just stop at one or two races. I like this mode a lot, and it's probably the mode I play most now. It's great for practicing for a Grand Prix or multiplayer.
In Battle Mode, you'll have balloons attached to the back of your kart, and once all of your balloons are popped, you lose. Your balloons can be popped by being hit with items, such as bob-ombs, red and green shells, and running into bananas and fake item boxes. You can also pop your opponent's balloons, the same way yours can be popped; setting bananas and fake items boxes, sending red and green shells, or dropping bob-ombs. This mode includes tracks that are exclusive to it. They cannot be raced at in Grand Prix or Vs. All the tracks in Battle are unlocked from the beginning. The one downside to this mode is that you can only use the character's standard car, although it's not really much of an issue. I play this mode a lot, either if it's by myself or with a friend. It's a staple of the Mario Kart series, and is still really fun.
Missions are another fun mode in single player. It has you complete certain tasks, such as racing through the rings in a set amount of time, or driving around a whole track in reverse. There are no other racers in this mode. It has six different levels (seven if you are perfect on each level) with nine different missions in each, one being a boss battle after you complete the first eight. This mode is really fun, and has a great replay value, especially if you are trying to get the seventh level.
Overall, the single player is awesome. It'll keep you coming back for a long time.
The graphics in this game are amazing. They are better than what I expected for a handheld. They are better the N64 for sure. The levels are very detailed as are the characters and their karts. The items and their effects (such as the bob-omb explosion) are also pretty well detailed.
The graphics in this game are great for a handheld.
Local Wireless Multiplayer
This is a very fun part of the game. I love racing against my friends and seeing whose best. In local multiplayer, there are two options - Multi-Card play and Single-Card play. Multi-Card is playing with friends that also own MKDS. You and your friend get to choose the character and kart you wish to use and the track. All the tracks are available for you to race at in Local Multi-Card Play. In Single-Card play, you can rave against a friend who does not own the game. In multiplayer, you choose the "Single-Card" option while your friend chooses Download Play at the DS start-up screen. The downfall to this type of multi-player is that you can only choose from the retro and shell cup tracks, and your friend automatically chooses Shy Guy as his character. (Note: Shy Guy is only available in download play).
Ah, wi-fi... In my opinion, it is one of the best parts of the game. To start out, you'll have to be at a hot-spot, or have a wireless router or a Nintendo USB connector at home. (Or be at a friends house, or very close to a friends house with a router or USB connector if you're cheap >.>) Once you're connected, you'll be able to choose from four options: Friends, Rivals, Regional, or Worldwide. Friend's mode is racing with people on your friends list. You can add someone by getting their friend code, and giving your to them. Rivals is racing against people who match your skill level. Regional is racing against people form around where you are. (I'm in New England, so I'll be racing against other New Englanders if I choose Regional). Worldwide is racing against someone from a random part of the world... They could be from England, Mexico, the U.S., basically anywhere... The only setback to wi-fi is that there is only a select amount of tracks available to race at. I'd like to be able to race at Shroom Ridge or Tick-Tock Clock, but the tracks that are available are still fine. The tracks available in wi-fi, although limited, will keep you happy. Wi-Fi is one of my favorite parts of MKDS, and will most likely be one of yours too. You have to play wi-fi at least once.
Multi-player is really fun in MKDS, whether it be Local or Wi-Fi. You'll spend a long time on either, just racing against your friends, or an unknown opponent over Wi-Fi... Oh, and did I mention that you can create your own emblems and have the displayed on your kart when racing? This is another neat feature of MKDS multi-player...
The replay value is great in this game. You can go back and try to get stars added to your name to be displayed when racing (I currently have two and am working on three). You can try to be old time trial records, and you can try to get the seventh level in Missions, by getting at least one star or better on each mission on each level, 1-6.
The replay value is great to this game, and you'll be playing a long time. I've had this game for a few months now, and there has not been a week where I haven't played this game at least once.
Overall- 10/10 (Not an average)
I love this game. It's my favorite DS game so far, and is one of my favorite games of all time... It'll keep you coming back for a long amount of time I've had this game for at least four-five months and it hasn't gotten old.
I hope you like my review, and hope you found it informative, and I also hope you decide to buy this game... It's not worth missing out on! d(^.^d)
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 08/09/06
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