Friday, August 8, 2008

Mariokart 6

So how is this newest iteration of Mario hot-selling racing franchise? Not bad, actually. As much as I dreaded the Wii Wheel, it actually works quite nicely. I still prefer the good ol' Gamecube controller, but hey, at least it's decent.

In any case, Mario and friends' latest outing fares pretty well in my book. There are plenty of characters to unlock, and while a couple of them are a pain to get, none of them are near impossible. And that's good.

One of the major additions is the ability to ride motorcycles in addition to karts. The bikes can wheelie on straitaways and get a little bit of a boost. Other than that, I don't find much of a difference.

One thing that has always bothered me abourt Mariokart is the ridiculous 'second place is always right on your tail no matter how fast you go' AI. Like the DS version, if you get 10 seconds ahead of the competition, you can stay there. This is a good thing. Especially since you'll need all the help you can get in the later cups and when playing online.

As always, Mariokart adds a few new items each time to change things up a bit. Included in the Wii version are the Giant Mushroom and the POW block. The Giant Mushroom is great fun, but is quite rare. Your character grows to about 5 times his/her normal size and flattens the people you run into. Very nice. The POW block makes everyone stop and lose their items, but to be honest, is not all that helpful.

As in the tradition of Mariokart DS, Mariokart Wii includes a few tracks from the other versions, such as Delfino Plaza (DS), Ghost Valley 2 (SNES), and Mario Circuit (N64). This is always fun, if nothing else because I am familiar with the tracks and that in and of itself is an advantage.

The one place where Mariokart is not as fun is the battle mode. First of all, they took away the awesome Shine Runners mode from the Gamecube version, which makes absolutely no sense. In its place is a Coin Runners game, where teams compete to collect and steal coins. Not as cool.

Other than that, the title is pretty solid, with great new tracks, easy to learn controls, and decent online play. There are ghosts for every track to learn how to get great times and find secrets, and the number of unlockables is good enough to keep you going for a long time.

All in all, I would recommend it to anyone who loves racing, or anyone who loves Mario. It's a great multiplayer title. And besides, you can finally move the controller to control your character, just like you tried to do when you played the original Mario Bros.

This game has earned a Blatantly Biased

1 comment:

Rachel said...

Hehe, I can never get that extra boost at the beginning of the race. I must be boost impaired, or something :) Luckily when we play together I can usually see your controller and I push when you do, hehe that helps me feel a little less tarded :)