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Mario Kart for Wii Gets Spring 08 Release Date

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the probably-be-out-by-summer dept.

Wii 52

Ars Technica notes, from Nintendo's Fall conference earlier this week, the news that Mario Kart for the Wii is slated for Spring of next year. The game is said to involve bikes for the first time: "It is unclear whether the bikes will be mostly an aesthetic effect or if the control mechanics will differ between karts and bikes. Mario Kart: Double Dash featured a collection of different carts with different statistics, but control was more or less the same across the board ... Despite accusations that Nintendo had nothing to offer the hardcore gamer in terms of announcements at the show, the latest incarnation of the classic kart-racing series was looking sharp in its debut."

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52 comments

Nothing for you to see here. Please move along. (1)

Daimanta (1140543) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954233)

I hope that isn't a bad omen. -.-

Re:Nothing for you to see here. Please move along. (1)

NoTheory (580275) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954277)

That's the cache not catching up quickly enough. There's no way nintendo would bail on a MarioKart game.

oblig. (1)

Seakip18 (1106315) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954259)

I for one welcome our new blue-shell throwing overlords!

Damn that shell. I've lost so many times because of that thing. That biking option looks neat, but it kinda defeats the purpose of MarioKart.

Re:oblig. (1)

Phisbut (761268) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955743)

That biking option looks neat, but it kinda defeats the purpose of MarioKart.

MarioScooter could be kind of fun though.

Re:oblig. (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#20957719)

MarioScooter could be kind of fun though.
Since the Wii has lots of old folks playing so don't forget MarioGolfKart, MarioRascal, and MarioBuickInTheLeftLaneGoing20WithRightBlinkerOn.

Mod Parent Up (1)

Vexor (947598) | more than 6 years ago | (#20959789)

Since the Wii has lots of old folks playing so don't forget MarioGolfKart, MarioRascal, and MarioBuickInTheLeftLaneGoing20WithRightBlinkerOn

That's hilarious.

So... (1)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954279)

Despite accusations that Nintendo had nothing to offer the hardcore gamer in terms of announcements at the show, the latest incarnation of the classic kart-racing series was looking sharp in its debut.
Is that intended to mean that Mario Kart appeals to the hardcore crowd?

Beyond snaking (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954463)

Is that intended to mean that Mario Kart appeals to the hardcore crowd?
Yes. Go to YouTube and search for mario kart prb to see why. Prolonged rocket boost (PRBing) is beyond snaking; it's a fscking taipan [wikipedia.org] .

Re:So... (1)

netsavior (627338) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955337)

Is that intended to mean that Mario Kart appeals to the hardcore crowd?

Wow. If I had to pick 1 SNES, 1 N64 and 1 GameCube game that were for the hardcore crowd, the answer to all 3 would be Mario Kart.

The difference between that and other hardcore titles is that Nintendo has actually figured out how to make games appeal to both the hardcore crowd and the mainstream one. If you don't think they are hardcore, you have likely never REALLY played them.

Re:So... (1)

rkanodia (211354) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956367)

The same is true of Smash Brothers. I personally just play it casually with friends, but if you want to play something deep, Smash Bros will let you go all the way down the rabbit hole.

Re:So... (1)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956451)

Wow. If I had to pick 1 SNES, 1 N64 and 1 GameCube game that were for the hardcore crowd, the answer to all 3 would be Mario Kart.
Double Dash sucked ass. No kind of revisionist history will change that. While I won't dispute the awesomeness of Mario Kart on SNES, you need to realize that as this casual market developed, Nintendo is modifying their entire business plan and gaming catalog to appeal to them (mostly). For instance, the Wii Mario Kart is coming bundled with a steering wheel to appeal to the "casual gamers."

My point is.. if this is Nintendo's attempt to reach out to hardcore gamers, then it's a pretty shitty attempt.

Re:So... (2, Insightful)

netsavior (627338) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956877)

Double Dash sucked ass
I guess we weren't playing the same game? Did you bring the blue sparks? 3rd best selling game for gamecube and a high rank even on metacritic.

Re:So... (2, Informative)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 6 years ago | (#20957677)

Hi- I'm, a hard core gamer. I play video games 4 hours a day or more on average. I'm looking forward to Mario Kart, and I think the steering wheel is a great idea. So yes, it appeals to us hardcore gamers.

Re:So... (1)

LKM (227954) | more than 6 years ago | (#21041049)

Double Dash sucked ass.

I lived together with a few other students during the lifespan of the Cube and PS2. We had both a Cube and a PS2. Double Dash was the second most played game in those four years, second only to Super Monkey Ball.

Double Dash is not a bad game. In fact, it's one of the best car racers of all times. It just looks bad if you compare it to the original Mario Kart, or to Mario Kart DS (in fact, I personally think it's better than Mario Kart 64).

For instance, the Wii Mario Kart is coming bundled with a steering wheel to appeal to the "casual gamers."

I'm guessing you've never played GT Pro Series with the steering wheel shell. It's a great attachment, and it makes a huge difference.

Re:So... (1)

jasonditz (597385) | more than 6 years ago | (#20963991)

All-night Battle Mode marathons in MK64 in the block fort... as much as I loved Perfect Dark yeah, no question it was Mario Kart

Re:So... (1)

LKM (227954) | more than 6 years ago | (#21040783)

Is that intended to mean that Mario Kart appeals to the hardcore crowd?

Uh... Yeah? Why, is that indended to mean you disagree???

Balls Out Boys! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20954317)

Its Wii Strokin' time!

Please make battle mode not suck (2, Interesting)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954333)

Mario Kart DS was ten times the game that Double Dash was, because it was basically a MK64 clone and MK64 was a stellar game. Double Dash was WAY worse, with no character balance (if you were Boozar on his big 6-wheeler you had to pray your opponent isn't as good as you or his Koopa team would eat you alive) and the most rubbish battle mode to ever be in a Mario Kart game.

So, as long as Nintendo realizes what went right with MKDS and what went wrong with MKDD, we'll be fine ^^

Oh and let's hope Namco has nothing to do with the game at all; I've played the MK 4-player arcade while in Osaka and it's BAD.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Pxtl (151020) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954615)

Meh, it was too exploitable as an online game. As an offline/friends game, though, I have to agree. Nintendo has to realize that, when taking games online, there is a new standard of play-balance that they have to live up to.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955089)

whaaaa? Does everyone always forget about Super Mario Kart? I always felt that SMK was far superior to MK64 (which I never even enjoyed). The battle, the racing, everything was better. I also feel that Double Dash is much more fun than MK64. The battle maps on MK64 are lousy and the racing isn't that great either (the maps have so many shortcuts and cheats it's ridiculous). The "bomb mode" battle in DD is great, even my friends that have never played DD before like it more than regular battle from MK64.

Regarding balance, Bowser has always been more difficult to drive skillfully than Toad. That's not just DD, that's just the way it's always been.

Just my $.02.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955487)

MK64 had the most balanced characters, the tightest controls, the best music, and while I agree that only Block Fort and Skyscraper were fun to play battle mode on, I found 1v1 matches on those two to be really intense if between skilled players.

I play a hell of a Bowser in MK64 and MKDS (though yeah if I feel like matching up against some Japanese kid I have to go with Dry Bones or something cause Bowser snaking is, well, forget it). I can do reasonably well in MKDD, but if I pick up someone like Koopa it's just sick. Reason is, in MKDD it's not just handling that's different, it's kart size (the road is basically 2x as wide if you're not a big guy like Bowser) and special item (Koopa's triple red shell is easily the best), so there's 3 layers of imbalance there which makes for a really unfulfilling game if you like the Koopa King rawwwrrr

Also wtf is with Bowser's voice in MKDD? I can do a better Bowser impression than that! He sounds like Captain Blubber riding his jet ski from Banjo Kazooie.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

JCSoRocks (1142053) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955985)

Lol @ bowsers voice.

I do agree on the cart size issue. The parade cart has the same problem, what's the point of earning the "best cart" in the game if it's as huge as Bowser's? It ends up being an upgrade for the Bowser drivers and a piece of junk for the Koopa's.

This is more of a random / ai issue, but I hate the frequency with which those blue shells come up. It's always the people in 6, 7, or 8th place and it doesn't even help them because they're so far back. I've been hit three times in a row with those things. It gets ridiculous after a while.

As for the weapon differences... I think the problem there is, once again, frequency. If Koopa only got triple shells as often as Toad got a golden mushroom, or as bowser got his huge ball and chain, it'd be more balanced. It's been my experience though that the three shells come up far more often than any other player's special. And, I'll admit... I won a DD tournament and I played Koopa the whole time! :P I usually play as Toad though, you don't get the triple shells but the mushrooms give you enough of a lead that you never need them (unless you get hit by the three aforementioned blue shells from hell).

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

ZERO1ZERO (948669) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956419)

Indeed

SMK was the best Mario Kart I have played. I have played SMK, MK64, MKDD, and MK on the GBA (but not yet on the DS). MK64 was a great party game, and along with Golden Eye, my friends and I wasted many many hours playing.

SMK required a degree of skill not needed in the later games, and the battle mode was truly awesome. I always wished for a 4 player with a slighty larger Track 4.

The catch up and unfair item distribution in MK64 really took alot away from that game for me, although it did make up for it in accessibility.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956799)

I'm with you. I never enjoyed MK64 near as much as SMK or even MKDD. SMK is the king and could only benefit from a higher framerate. Just to make it act smoother. But for it's day, it's the best. We'll see what they do with MKWii...

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (3, Informative)

Mattintosh (758112) | more than 6 years ago | (#20959721)

Nothing beats the original, no matter how many newbs think MK64 is better. (Note: not n00bs, just newbs. You're not lame if you like MK64, just inexperienced.)

The one thing I loved more about the original than any of the others was the lack of that annoying power slide crap. You could jump and slide, but there was no speed boost from "wiggling your stick". All that got you was some funny looks from the people around you. You jumped, slid, released the turn, and jumped again to stop your sideways momentum (a slight physics glitch that was really helpful). No boosts. No color-changing smoke. No blue sparks. (Jesus brings them, you know. [penny-arcade.com] ) Just a good racing game. With Mario-themed weaponry.

Oh, and the simple-yet-fun battle mode... that ruled. Bring that gameplay up to 4 (or more!) players and I'm in. No timers, bombs, or blowing up your own balloons (I never thought I'd be winded playing video games, but Nintendo has proved me wrong), just head-to-head kart carnage like old times.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#20960309)

I'm sorry, but SMK is, hands-down, the worst in the series. Sure, it was good for its day. It's terrible now, and the only thing, imo, that keeps people attached to it is nostalgia and rose-colored glasses.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) | more than 6 years ago | (#20973463)

when I first played SMK, I found I had to think carefully about items, lines, skidding, characters, shortcuts... and I'd replay levels to shave fractions of a second off my personal best.

when I first played MK64 I found all I had to do was hold accelerate and turn. all the other stuff was there but there was just no need and hence no fun. when losing becomes so difficult, winning feels so boring.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955687)

I disagree, I think Double Dash was a ton better than DS. In the end, though, Nintendo will be hard-pressed to go wrong, no matter what they do. They'd just better let me steer with a Cube controller if I want, I doubt that steering wheel is going to do it for me.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Gogo0 (877020) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955793)

I also played the MK Arcade game in Osaka (with three friends) and i wouldnt say it was bad, just odd.
I couldnt nail down why some things were happening. I think the game balances things out across the players so that no one can really take a lead. It feels wrong, but it keeps everyone more or less together, and as a result there is a lot of action.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955967)

Hehe the only thing I really enjoyed about it was the announcer. "Only one lap left, can Koopa still do it!?" and such; I found that somewhat amusing. Also I couldn't figure out how to powerslide which didn't help :-( (can you even powerslide in that game?)

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Gogo0 (877020) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956609)

I dont think I figured out how to powerslide either (this was about a year ago). Probably another arcadey change to the formula to order the playing field and keep the games tight races.
For crying out loud, i was playing against a guy (who knew what he was doing) and two girls who definitely werent hardcore MK players, and the girls won as many times as I did. Crazy hectic games, but i agree that it wouldnt be a good foundation for a serious console MK game. It could make an interested multiplayer mode, if you were able to turn it on and off.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

edwdig (47888) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956151)

I don't play Mario Kart hardcore, so I can't really comment on the balance too much, other than to say nothing stands out as being really out of line to me. The big thing about Double Dash was it was a far more accessible game. 2 players on one kart is a lot more fun than separate karts when you've got players of different skill levels.

As for the battle mode, the DD stages are at least more interesting than MK64's. I couldn't stand that stage that was just a circle with a lava pit in the middle. The slanted track just didn't work well with the game's camera. Outside of that stage, none of the other MK64 battle tracks stand out to me anymore.

Re:Please make battle mode not suck (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#20957321)

The donut battle level in MK64 was pretty poo, I agree. But DD's cake level with the zipper hill in the middle is dang-near the same thing as far as I'm concerned, gameplay-wise. The donut at least had those big stone structures you could hide behind and do Western-type showdowns with (both guys hide behind opposite sides of the structure and then drive out to shoot at each other with 6 green shells ^^).

Bikes vs Karts (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954349)

I hope one controls more traditionally and uses the nunchuck, and the other just a Wii-mote.

This would allow for 4 way party playing with a more affordable cost for entry, but more what we expect for fans.

Coding Times (0, Troll)

bym051d (980242) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954423)

What's taking so long to get quality Wii titles out? This is pretty much the same system as the Gamecube. Coding for it should be easy by now.

Re:Coding Times (2, Insightful)

mlk (18543) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954507)

My guesses...

Nintendo:
Working out how to use the controller well.

Everyone else:
Did not bother with it until thinking it would fall flat on its face. Now attempting to get games out that use the controller.

Re:Coding Times (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#20954903)

"This is pretty much the same system as the Gamecube. Coding for it should be easy by now."

Coding may be easy, but they still have lots and lots of assets to create. Artwork takes time.

Re:Coding Times (1)

Boogaroo (604901) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956045)

Yes, the content takes time, but I suspect the controls are what the real issue is.
It's nice to have pretty visuals; but if it plays like crap, you get something like Rise of the Robots for SNES.

If they have something like the wiggle turbo boosts from the previous games, it might be hard to get it to feel just right.

Re:Coding Times (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 6 years ago | (#20958207)

"Yes, the content takes time, but I suspect the controls are what the real issue is."

I'd say that's a strong possibility. Playtesting goes on for ages. I'd say that's probably the first thing to get started and the last to get completed. My only real point, though, was the vast majority of man hours in games like this is often in the art/sound creation, not the actual programming. Depending on the game, yadda yadda yadda, you could have 15 guys creating art and 2 guys doing the programming.

Each game's different, though, so there are always exceptions. My generalization shouldn't be taken too seriously.

Missing Info (4, Interesting)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955001)

One thing that's missing TFA is that online play can feature 12 players at the same time [kotaku.com] .

Words simply cannot express how badly I want this. Instead of making 3 people hate me I'll make 11 people hate me. >:)

Re:Missing Info (1)

Malekin (1079147) | more than 6 years ago | (#20962101)

One thing that's missing TFA is that online play can feature 12 players at the same time.

Words simply cannot express how badly I want this. Instead of making 3 people hate me I'll make 11 people hate me. >:)


I already think you're a bit of a prat.

Competition (1)

StDoodle (1041630) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955167)

I loved the original Super Mario Kart. My brother and I played that game nonstop, and we had both built up quite the set of skills and tricks for the vs. battle mode. Near the end, we got to where we could do more damage with the green shells and banana peels than with red shells, since there were tricks to get the red shells to hit walls. Our battles were almost always decided by who pulled off the best moves, not who had the most luck with items.

Though I haven't played the DS version yet, all of the other Kart games seemed more about who got the badass items & when, and not so much about skill. Mostly, it's the "hopping" feature that I miss; without the ability to execute a well-timed "hop," most of the skill is gone.

Please Nintendo, bring back my hopping with the new version, and I'll finally break down and get a Wii.

Re:Competition (0)

Hitto (913085) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955939)

The DS version is ALL about skill. Which is why so many people hate online play, because you have to know how to snake (or "cheaply exploit the game like a two-dollar-whore", will the noobs say) if you want to stand a chance. None of that "Ooops, one blue shell. Whoops Three red shells in a row. Yay, I was first but thanks to the power of shitty luck I come in last! Yay for casual fucking gamers!" bullshit.
As a matter of fact, you can snake out of a blue shell in MKDS.
It's replaced MK64 as my favorite Mario Kart game of all time. I consider the gamecube game to be mario kart in name only.

Re:Competition (1)

pizzach (1011925) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955963)

I agree the original Super Mario Kart was the best [including hopping]. That version intrinsically had a bit of a learning curve for turning the bends, requiring much more skill to win a race than Mario Kart 64. But for those aforementioned reasons I believe 64 received its original changes...to make it more accessible. Things like giving a speed advantage and a higher ratio of good items to the rear racer never quite felt right. You eventually realize that only last 30 seconds of the race matters under those conditions. On the bright side, I do hear that the DS version is bitchin because it's a combination of the best parts of the original and it's 64 version.

PS I have no real grips about the battle modes in 64, although I never especially appreciated the large size of the levels.

Wait, what? (4, Insightful)

Godai (104143) | more than 6 years ago | (#20955773)

Despite accusations that Nintendo had nothing to offer the hardcore gamer in terms of announcements at the show...
What exactly does this mean? I consider myself a pretty 'hardcore' gamer, but I love Mario Kart. Does loving somehow Mario Kart exclude from this '1337' label? I always assumed a 'hardecore gamer' meant someone who played a lot of games & spent a lot of their time playing games. I didn't realize it also carried some sort of implication about what kinds of games they play. I mean, if some kid plays Pokemon ever waking minute of his life, I'd call that pretty hardcore.

Re:Wait, what? (1)

ZERO1ZERO (948669) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956519)

I think 'hardcore gamer' in this case is talking about a gamer that plays a lot, but also one who is skilful.

Compare Super Mario Kart and MarioKart 64, the former actually required the use of skillz and practice to actually play and win the game, the latter all you need to do is drive round the track a few times - the computer gives you good stuff if you're last - it's only the last 30 secs of each game that matters.

This makes the former more suited for 'hardcore gamers'. The latter is accessible for everyone. If you can coordinate left and right with your controller to the kart on screen, you can play MK64 - I.e no skills involved.

It seems this divides a lot of players, and personlly I fall into the former camp, although I'm not hardcore, the 'luck' element in MK64 really ruins it and the skill element in SMK really makes it.

Re:Wait, what? (1)

milamber3 (173273) | more than 6 years ago | (#20956621)

I'm pretty sure you are misunderstanding the meaning of "despite." Generally, what follows is information that refutes something. So basically, the sentence means that the Mario Kart news IS something for the hardcore gamers. At least that is how I read it.

Re:Wait, what? (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 6 years ago | (#20957909)

Hardcore gamer means "anyone who agrees with my opinion on games". Frequently used in this method by MMO players and FPS players to try and prove their point via circular logic. Which is why "hardcore gamers" don't matter- there is no hardcore gamer group, just a lot of small communities.

yes, Yes, YES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20956689)

Only a couple more months until this slips to a Fall release! Wii Hii!
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