The Mario Kart Tour “Kraze”
The launch of the new Mario Kart Tour was highly anticipated by fans of the Mario Kart series. Let’s see what Beckman students have to say about the new app
October 8, 2019
“3, 2, 1, GO!”
Your Toad character speeds down the race track. Using your finger to steer the kart, you try to avoid hitting the wall on that sharp turn. Oh no ‒ phew! Close call, but unfortunately, your competitors are now ahead of you. Thankfully, there are item boxes coming up for you to collect. Please be a mushroom.
Luck is on your side, and you get a mushroom, giving you the speed boost that places you in first. Keeping the lead until the end, you are rewarded with thousands of points for winning, and hopefully, you collected a decent amount of coins as you zoomed through New York City.
Welcome to the world of Mario Kart Tour, the new Nintendo game that was released on Sept. 25, 2019. Transforming the iconic Mario Kart games into a mobile version, Mario Kart Tour keeps the same characters, items, and courses with better graphics while adding in new features. New features include new courses that take players to New York, Tokyo and Paris, a Frenzy mode and new items for users to unlock. Taking the mobile gaming industry by storm, Mario Kart Tour soars to 90 million downloads within the first week after its launch, surpassing Nintendo’s previous Mario Kart mobile app release, Super Mario Run.
Ranking number one in the “Free Apps” chart and number 19 for app revenue in the U.S., the Mario Kart Tour “kraze” also took over Arnold O. Beckman High School. Many students downloaded the highly anticipated app, posting their player ID’s on social media platforms to have their friends add them and constantly on their phones racing against other players.
A survey was conducted to see the student opinion of Mario Kart Tour. The responses were generally positive, with 88.9 percent of the respondents saying that they found Mario Kart Tour fun. “The app is in some ways addicting for me because races are always unlocked after you complete one, it just gets better and you gain new characters, cars, items, [and more],” said a senior.
In addition to being addicting, many respondents felt nostalgic playing Mario Kart Tour. “I like how it took the classic game we all played as kids on our Wii and converted it into a more accessible form for all to enjoy!” commented senior Sanaya Shah. In fact, the leading reason for why students downloaded the app was to see how Nintendo would recreate their classic Mario Kart game for mobile phones.
Respondents also enjoyed the portability of the game. A sophomore stated, “I enjoy the mobile access because it’s far easier and convenient to use because it’s free, unlike the portable switch.” With Mario Kart Tour, players can now race against others on the go. Moreover, anyone with a Nintendo account ‒ which can be easily registered ‒ can download the app.
However, respondents also voiced their concerns about the game. The main complaint was the lack of multiplayer mode. While players can’t compete against their friends yet, they can still add friends and compare their rankings. But, don’t worry! Nintendo has indicated that they will be adding the multiplayer mode later on, but they have yet to announce a specific date.
Another common complaint from respondents was the confusing controls. Since karts automatically accelerate, players can only control the direction of their kart by swiping left and right. “The controls are difficult to use and although control settings can be changed, it’s not intuitive,” stated senior Ishan Sharma.
Compared to the original Mario Kart games, the responses from the respondents were mixed. Sophomore Jacob Song responded, “The main aspects are the same: you race against other characters, get power-ups to try and get first place.” On the other hand, a junior commented, “The design has been modernized (which is super cool), but it lost some of its original character in the process.”
While Mario Kart Tour is reminiscent of the original games, 73.3 percent of the respondents actually preferred the original games. “The original has all the classic locations, like Coconut Mall, Koopa Cape, Rainbow Road, etc., and those are definitely a different kind of fun. The Mario Kart Tour app is more of a game you play when you are bored outside because it’s easy to access on your phone. But, the original Mario Kart games on [the] Wii brings forth a different kind of adrenaline,” said junior Rachel Ker. Respondents who preferred the original game also liked the multiplayer mode and being able to control the game on a console.
Their biggest argument? Nothing beats the original.
However, the respondents who preferred the Mario Kart Tour game argued that the app’s portability and their future expectations gave the app an edge over the original games. Senior Sandra Kim stated, “I like [the] app more than the original game because even though it doesn’t have the same variety of options, the app has frequent updates and lots of prizes. I love that the app also has special edition pipe launches and an option to connect with friends! I feel like the app does a much better job [of] keeping users interested.” Another factor to note is that some respondents hadn’t played the original games before, so they chose the new game as their preference.
According to the survey, most respondents enjoyed playing the game, yet preferred the original games to the mobile version. However, these results aren’t reflective of everyone’s opinions, so how good Mario Kart Tour depends on your own judgment. Regardless, the interest in Mario Kart Tour is still racing to the top, so people will continue downloading and playing the game.
So, now, the big question: did Mario Kart Tour live up to the hype?
More than 60 percent of respondents agree that it did. What do you think?
Some names were removed from the article to preserve the anonymity of the interviewees.