Finally there’s news that the 3DS is actually selling out in some shops before Christmas and that probably has a lot to do with Mario coming to the system in the form of Super Mario 3D Land and Mario Kart 7. I’m a massive fan of the racing series so is it actually worth buying a 3DS for? Well, the short answer is, if I got the console and game for Christmas I’d be very happy indeed.
Once again you can compete in 8 cups across three speed classes, each consisting of four races. Some of these are brand new and some of these are remixed versions of old favourites thanks to some new things you can do in your kart. As well as the usual hopping, skidding and boosting, you can now fly off jumps thanks to some nifty wings and also drive underwater with a propeller. What this means in gameplay is some fun new avenues and shortcuts to try out to try and get an edge over your opponent.
Of course though, there’s the random items you can pick up and once again they can be rather annoying if you’re about to cross the finish line and you’re bombarded by blue and red shells. New to your arsenal is a Tanooki tail you can hit things with, white flower fireball power and a Lucky 7 which gives you seven power-ups at once. Surely the best of the lot! You can also customize your vehicle with different combinations of driver, chassis and wheels to tweak its performance and unlock new items by collecting coins on the track.
With balloon and coin battles thrown in there as well in both single and multiplayer, local and Wi-Fi play and Streetpass functionality this is probably the most comprehensive Mario Kart so far. The same annoyances creep in with predictable winners and harsh bad luck when trying to win in 150 cc class but overall, especially if playing with 8 other people in the same room, it’s in a handheld racing class of its own – it gets a Bowser-bashing 9 out of 10.
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