Review by alphablitz

"Oh crap."

You need this game. If you have a DS, you need to buy this game.

When I first heard that the WiFi function only supported a 4 player max and no battle mode, I was extremely disappointed. My best MarioKart memories are duking it out with my buddies in battlemode on N64. Smashing my friend in the face with a green shell to pop his last balloon gives me a feeling for which there is no comparison. So, yes. It sucks that there is no interweb battle mode. A lot.

Fortunately, I haven't had time to brood or shake my fists because I am constantly utilizing them towards other ends (i.e. pwning n00bz0rs on teh Interweb). I don't know what it is about playing a human as opposed to insensate AI, but I swear, in a close race, I can actually taste blood in my mouth. It's intense. I mean, you can't have your win/loss ratio suffer. Then how will you ever get girls?

I really can't stress enough how fun the stupid little 4 player race mode is online. I still wish Nintendo would have given us more, but the game they have condescended to bestow upon us mortals is succulent. Far be it for me to demand a 12 lb. lobster when I am served 10 lbs. of king crab legs.

Graphics
Looks nice. Certainly better than the N64 game, which is the most comparable hardware. Plus (I guess this goes in the graphics section?) you get to design your own logo, like in Halo 2. Only you totally get to design it. The setup to do so is akin to MarioPaint. Pretty nifty. Go ahead, draw a &^*$# for the world to see.

Sound
Sounds nice. Certainly better than the N64 game. The retro levels (a random assortment of courses from MarioKarts past) retain their original music, which is delightful. The new music is solid too. Good old Mario cheese. Catchy and inoffensive.

Gameplay
Yes. The gameplay is nice. The controls feel a tad sharper than previous games. My kart in Double Dash always just felt a bit clunky, probably because of the whole other passenger seat. Not so here! Everything is tight and responsive. This depends upon your character, of course. Driving Bowser is like trying to drive a semi using only your mind, but those who are supposed to have good handling have good handling.

There are new items. A bob-omb which makes your head a splode (not terribly useful, actually because it's hard to aim) and a squid which inks up the other guy's screen (also not a big deal). But hey, it shakes things up a bit.

Another tasty ingredient in the gameplay pie is stellar level design. The original levels, I hereby state with all confidence, are the best ever. I was actually a little disappointed with Double Dash's levels. Bland. But these are awesome.

Replay Value
If I had to assign a number to this category, it would be right around a perfect one hundred out of a possible ten. Internet play makes for longevity. Even aside from that, there's plenty of crap to unlock. Circuits, racers, karts. I forgot to mention that. Each racer has his own selection of carts now. Not like Double Dash where you could select someone else's kart. No. Everyone has his very own garage.

In conclusion, stand up, walk to your car, and purchase this game immediately. It's only $35 new, which is another 100/10. I'll see you online. I'll see you online, and I'll pwn you like n00b. (My handle's Dedalus.)


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 11/16/05


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