Hello Scorum Friends!
A little while ago I made a post listing out my favorite sports video games of all time. Number 2 on that list right behind my favorite, Punchout, is Mario Kart. Now I want to dive in a bit deeper into the world of Mario Kart and discuss reasons why it is the greatest Driving Game series ever.
Super Mario Kart was the first in the series and came out in 1992 on the Super Nintendo. This game was seemingly a kid’s game, because of the theme of riding around on go-karts and featuring the main characters from the Mario World. You could pick Mario, of course, Luigi, Yoshi (my favorite), Princess Peach, Bowser, Koopa Troopa, and a few others. The game had amazing success selling almost 9 million copies. It became the 4th highest selling game for Nintendo. And the audience and critics a like loved it. It wasn’t just a game for kids, but adults seemed to enjoy the game as well. Let’s be honest, how can you not like this game? I for one always had a fascination with go-karts and I loved Mario games, so when you put the two together into a video game, you got me sold! And then give the user the ability to throw bananas and shells at other racers…oh my.
In Super Mario Kart you could drive in single player mode against the rest of the opponents, or you could also races against another person. The screen would be split. And there would be two human controlled characters and then the computer would control the other 6. You could also drive in 50CC karts or 100CC karts. The 100 CC karts were much faster and harder to control. I will be honest I normally played the 50 CC. But if you were able to beat the Mushroom Cup, the Flower Cup, and the Star Cup on 100 CC, then a new Special Cup was opened. If you happened to beat that, the 150 CC level opened up. The tracks were all based off of various locations that could be found in Super Mario World. I spent quite a few hours racing my friends and of course the computer.
Then in 1996 Mario Kart 64 was released, and oh man was I hooked! It was released with 3D graphics! And this game featured 4 people racing, meaning you could have up to 4 human players at a time. The screen would get split into fourths. I will be honest, playing on one of those 27 inch Tube TVs back in the day, meant for really small screens if you played with 4 people, but it was great fun! It wound up selling close to 10 million copies worldwide. This made it the second highest selling Nintendo 64 game. It wasn’t as praised as much as the first one however, but that didn’t stop me from loving it!
In 2001 the Xbox came out and I wound up buying one of those and playing it almost exclusively. I would still go over to my friend’s house and play Mario Kart once in awhile, but didn’t play it as much as I used to. In 2008 Mario Kart Wii came out, again it was a great game, but since I was no longer a Nintendo owner, I only played it on rare occasions. The graphics were definitely getting much better, as one would expect. Looking back if I had lots of money I probably would have owned one of each of the gaming systems, hahaha. Mario Kart 7 came out in 2011. And would go on to sell 17 million copies worldwide, by the middle of the year of 2018. It was also nominated two times in the favorite video game category at the Kid’s Choice Awards, but didn’t wind up winning either time.
In 2014 on my birthday May 30th, 2014, Mario Kart 8 was released. My good friends and neighbors who lived a few doors down wound up buying it. They would invite me over to come play Mario Kart with them on their Wii U. It was so much fun. The graphics had gotten even better; there were all kinds of different tracks. A variety of projectiles to have fun with and torment other racers with, all around it is so much fun! I loved getting the blue shell and blasting the person in the lead with it, or getting the three red shells, haha. My favorite of all the tracks in this game is the ExciteBike track. My least favorite of the tracks are the rainbow roads ones. Hahaha, I always seem to fall off the edges. My friends moved, but not too far away, and they still invite me over a few times a month to eat good food and play Mario Kart. Another reason why I love this game so much is it is super fun to play with my friends. Their oldest child is almost 6 years old and it is so fun to play with her, and watch her get upset when she comes in 12th place, and cheer her on and celebrate with her when she gets 9th place or even better. My favorite character to be is Blue Yoshi, and I like to drive the Circuit Special Kart with the Cyber Slicks, and the 8 Ball glider, haha. This game got really good reviews and would go on to be one of the best selling Wii U games worldwide. How could it not? It is Mario Kart!! For some reason I just seem to enjoy this series more then the more realistic racing games, but don’t get me wrong, the Forza series is pretty awesome.
Mario Kart in Real Life
Did you ever drive go-karts around as kids? Or maybe you have as adults? Here in Phoenix there are several places where you can go and drive karts. Some are kind of the standard slower karts, meant more for kids, and then there are places where you can drive karts up to like 40 miles an hour. With that said, one of the things on my bucket list is to fly to Japan and while there do real life Mario Kart racing! Yes real life Mario kart racing. You can get dressed up as your favorite character, hop on a go-kart and drive around in the streets of Tokyo! How fun would that be? I mean just take a look at this YouTube video. I am sold! Who is coming with me? Hahaha
There you have it my friends a little look into the world of Mario Karting, and why I liked the game so much, as well as a glimpse at real life Mario Karts!
Drop a comment down below and let me know what your favorite Mario Kart game is ☺.
Your Scorum Friend,
Matt aka @bayareasportsfan