Mario Kart Wii BoxThe game that created a genre just keeps getting better.

Mario Kart is the fast, furious cartoon racing game that spawned a whole new gaming genre– the kart racer.

 

Each new Nintendo machine, whether hand held or home console, gets its own version of Mario Kart. In 2007, it was Wii’s turn.

It’s a simple formula: vehicles + weapons + outrageous tracks = addictive fun. And it’s addictive fun for everyone, never more so than in Mario Kart Wii, and that was a very good thing considering a fair chunk of Wii’s audience were casual players.

There’s a difficulty level and a control scheme to suit all players. Turning the Wii remote on its side or snapping it into the included Wii wheel is a great way for beginners to learn the tracks, while plugging in a nunchuck provides seasoned players with that extra level of tightness in the control. There was also support for Gamecube controllers.

Knowing the tracks and knowing what each weapon and item does (and when to use them) is the key to becoming a decent Mario Kart player, and Mario Kart Wii’s wider than usual tracks made it fairly easy for casual players to jump in and be competitive.

Mario Kart Wii also featured one of Wii’s more robust online components. Playing against up to 11 other people from around the world was a great way to practice and learn not only the tracks and items, but also how other human opponents play the game.

You’d also earn or lose points based on your online performance, and it was kept reasonably fair by automatically pitting you up against players of a similar skill level.

You also got to see what country each of your opponents comes from via a spinning map of Earth.

It was a great touch, and you really got a buzz from knowing you’re out there representing Australia on an international stage. You could also go online with a friend via the two player spit screen option, but unfortunately, (and inexplicably) the second player only appeared as a guest, and didn’t accumulate points. Since the closure of the Nintendo Wi-Fi network in 2014, these online components are no longer functioning.

The real fun in Mario Kart Wii, however, came when you grabbed some friends and played together in the same room. Two or three people wass great, but four player is where the game truly shines- and modern televisions made 4-way split screen so much easier to cope with.

Mario Kart is the some of the best fun you can have on Wii, and no matter what your experience level or what kind of games you enjoy, you had to love Mario Kart Wii.

Did you love Mario Kart Wii, or does one of the previous games in the series own your heart? Leave a comment!

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