Mario Kart Wii Review by Gareth Dent
Mario Kart Wii the latest installment to the Mario Kart series and the first installment on the Wii. The game comes with the new Wii Wheel, which is to give a more realistic steering experience. If you prefer not to use that, you may still use the Classic or Gamecube Controller to play.
Mario Kart Wii lets you have up to twelve players race to the finish in a multi-lap race around a given course. Like previous Mario Karts, players may use items and take shortcuts in order to earn first place. A new feature in the game would be the “Stunts” feature. When you perform a stunt, you get a momentary boost of speed which allows your character to do a few different things, such as grabbing item boxes in midair.
The character roster features some surprising characters that you can unlock, which I will not give out here so I do not spoil any one, and as well as classic characters to the series such as Mario, Luigi, Wario, Waluigi, Bowser, Yoshi, Peach, etc. The characters are no longer characterized by weight (Light, Middle, Heavy), but by size now (Small, Medium, and Large). An example of this would be Waluigi, who was always a middle weight before, but is now considered a Large character because of his height.
As with other installments, the game features 16 Brand New courses, and 16 Retro courses from past Mario Kart Games (Excluding only the arcade installments). There will be some courses you love, and as well as “those” courses which you will not be able to stand playing a race on.
The music is the game, like the other installments, is pretty good. The game has its memorable tracks, but I wouldn’t say it’s the best soundtrack in the world. But the game does a great job when it comes to the voices of the characters. The voices make the character in this game. The taunts and voice of the character truly do fit them very well this time around.
The AI may seem all fair at the beginning, but once you get to the later cups (150cc and Mirror) you will be greeted to torture. It seems as though no matter what you do, the AI is right behind you and they always seem to hit you with an item at the best of times (Such as getting hit with a Blue Shell right before the finish line at the final lap or getting struck by lighting while going over a large gap). While this may seem like something that would just happen a few times, it feels as though it happens 50% of the time while racing and really unbalances the game.
My biggest gripe with the game though comes with the graphics. What happened here? The Wii is supposed to be one of the Next-Generation consoles, but the graphics in this game looks as though this game is a Gamecube Game. In this age of gaming, there is no excuse for some characters to still seem like they have blocky hands. Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Mario Galaxy released before this game, and they have superior graphics when comparing the two.
One of the best parts of this game is playing online using the Nintendo Wi-Fi Service. The game features the best online service on the Wii title since its launch. You can get into a quick match easily or if your friends are playing online you can join them in whatever they are doing without a problem. You barely deal with any lag issues while playing. There could be a few gripes here and there depending on connections, but the overall experience is ultra smooth. The only thing I could say is missing are online leader boards and voice chat, but that’s probably it. This is the way Nintendo should of always had the Wi-Fi service.
I would definitely recommend this game to any Wii owner out there, especially if they have access to the Nintendo Wi-Fi service. Whether you are a parent looking to get this for a child, or someone looking for another game to add to there collection, Mario Kart Wii is a game that is truly made for anyone to pick up and play.
- Online is one of the best on a Nintendo system to date.
- The voice overs are pretty well done
- Most of the courses are fun to play on
- Controls are great once you get used to them (depending on what you are using)
- Graphics could be much better
- People may see the AI as cheap
- Wii Wheel could be hard to get used to for some people.
Here is the rundown:
Game play: 8.5
Lasting Appeal: 9.5