GAMES - Review
11:00 - 26th July 2014, by Michael Dodson

Mario Kart 8

From the moment you boot up Mario Kart 8's crisp, modern title screen and are blasted with the punch of the horns that dominate its funky soundtrack, you know that, presentation-wise, Nintendo have finally accelerated into the next-gen era of console games.

The racetracks themselves, so pivotal in the enjoyment of any kart racer, are also gorgeous to look at, from the twisting, techno-inspired Electrodome to the gently setting sun over Moo Moo Meadows. Many of the 32 tracks (16 new, 16 retro) are designed with the new gravity mechanic in mind, which sees the karts gain the ability to scale sharp inclines and even race upside down - a bit of a gimmick, sure, but one that leads to some truly creative moments, such as racing up, then down, a magnificent waterfall.

It's a shame that, single player wise, there's little on offer besides the standard Grand Prix and Time Trials, but multiplayer is likely where you'll spend most of your time anyway, and the online mode works just as you'd expect, with the welcome new option to set up tournaments for other players.

Wii U games may be thin on the ground right now, but of the current titles available, this one definitely gets top of the podium.

A familiar formula that's been brought up to date with some excellent music and visuals, Mario Kart 8 is a real high point for the series.
SCORE: 4.5/5
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