We’re considering some of the coolest and most interesting content Nintendo could add to Mario Kart 8. They’ve opened the floodgates for franchise crossovers, and we want more. These are some of our favourite ideas for vehicles, racers, courses and even items that could make their way from some of Nintendo’s biggest franchises into Mario Kart. If you missed Part 1, be sure to check it out before you look through this one, and give our review of MK8’s first DLC pack a read too.
We’ve got Mute City, we’ve got the Blue Falcon, we need the man himself. But wait, do we? Now we’ve learnt how amiibos interact with MK8 we know there’ll be some pretty nifty Mii costumes to go along with certain figures. The Fox and Kirby costumes don’t replace the desire for those characters, but the Captain Falcon one? Well, it’s pretty sweet. Okay, fine. I’ll settle for a costume on this one.
Let’s face it, there’s a good chance we’ll never see a new F-Zero game. If Mario Kart content is the closest we’re going to get, then give us more than one track. Big Blue would probably be the next most likely course after Mute City, but would that really be the most exciting? I propose Lightning. Extreme air pollution has resulted in incessant lightning storms in the area; hence the name, with a by-product of a pretty sweet atmosphere. There are a few Lightning tracks to take inspiration from, but so long as the F-Zero style of the Mute City DLC carries over, we’re all good. Keep F-Zero alive, Nintendo.
Palutena’s loyal servant has had something of a resurgence recently. After 17 years of dormancy, Smash Bros. brought him back, and a new Kid Icarus game came soon after. I’d say if Link can make sense in the MK universe, Pit can too. He might have to fold up his wings a bit, but I’m sure he’d fit in fine.
The multiple-path Yoshi-Valley-style tracks don’t show up in Mario Kart games as much as I think they deserve to, and Palutena’s Temple could make for an especially curvy one. Racing atop winding walls while your competitors drive past on the track below would super fun, especially considering dropping items down from above. Giving each path distinct advantages and disadvantages rather than a definite shortest route would keep races dynamic and interesting.
Fans finally managed to convince Nintendo to bring Earthbound to the Wii U Virtual Console, and Ness continues to be a fan favourite Smash character. The people love a bit of Ness, so give the people Ness in a kart.
Queen Mary’s haven would make a good looking Mario Kart course. Sure, it might come down to being something of a pink Rainbow Road, but imagine how pretty! It’s always good to have a nice looking track or two, and they don’t all need to be super complicated, right?
Imagine swinging Ness’ Homerun bat into the back of your friends’ karts as you drive past, sending them flying into the horizon. Lakitu would have his hands full getting those suckers back.
What better character to drive through an Excitebike track than Little Mac? An Excitebike racer would be as silly as a Punch-Out course, but I’d say the two fit pretty well together. Little Mac’s appearance in Smash surely indicates some fan interest, and he’d certainly get a warm welcome to the track.
I think Splatoon could be big for Nintendo. It’s a great looking new IP taking a popular genre and making it distinctly Nintendo – what’s not to love? The Inklings are pretty interesting creatures that I’m sure will grow to be among Nintendo’s catalogue of beloved characters, if Splatoon even turns out to be a good game. Assuming it does, I’d love to see an Inkling throwing shells.
One of These?
Splatoon looks to have some pretty cool environments too, and if there’s one thing that looks good in Mario Kart it’s a bunch of colour. We’ve seen ramps, jumps and little traversal puzzles in Splatoon trailers, all of which would make for some awesome MK tracks. Involve the ink in some way and you’ve got your self a nifty little course.
We’ve getting Link and a Hyrule track, but we want more Zelda. We want more tracks, we want more items, so why not throw another racer in too? The Princess would have plenty of royalty on board to compete with, even some babies and humans somehow made entirely of various metals.
The Hyrule Field/Castle Town track of the first DLC pack is perhaps the most suitable first Zelda track for Mario Kart, but there’s still so many obvious picks. One of the most fitting of these is Skyloft. The Hero of the Goddess’ hometown has a lake, a waterfall, some bridges and stuff, everything you need. Not to mention it’s a floating island in the sky. Anti-gravity, underwater sections, hang gliding parts, opportunities for everything in one of the most iconic settings in recent Zelda history.
It might be a bit more obscure, but I would love for this to happen. The desert proper has sink sand and ramps up to the top of walls, but where it gets interesting is the idea of Timeshift Stones. Hitting one of these in Skyward Sword causes a temporal shift within a certain area, essentially sending a certain radius back in time. The coolest part of this is the Sand Sea. Filled with sand in the present, but water in the past. Regardless of whether specific pockets stayed within time-travel-bubbles or if it was up to players to hit the stones and activate the time-shift themselves, this would be an awesome track. Obviously, doing it yourself would be more awesome. Not that all of this isn’t enough already, but there’s also a roller coaster track and a cool pirate ship in the area. Could it get any better? Probably not. A segmented, one-track course through the Lanayru Desert would be a dream come true for me, and I’m sure plenty of other people would like it too.
Wouldn’t it be fantastic if you had Link’s Hookshot, firing it at opponents ahead of you to drag yourself towards them? You could latch onto ledges that lead into shortcuts, or pull down parts of the environment to take out other drivers.
There’s still a lot that Mario Kart 8 could take from its own predecessors too. Where are Diddy Kong and Bowser Jr? Where are some proper Battle Mode maps? As many tracks that could be introduced from other Nintendo franchises, there are so many fantastic Mario Kart tracks from the past. If they’re going to keep adding DLC to MK8, we don’t just want new stuff, we want classics too. Assuming the DLC packs keep coming for a while, we could eventually have a Mario Kart game containing every MK course ever. Would that not be amazing!?
The same goes for the items. We’re not saying that we should be doing away with shells, ‘shrooms and stars altogether; the classics will always have a firm and important place. A little more variety between games, however, would be amazing, and allowing the new crossover territory that Nintendo are gingerly stepping into to overflow to the items would be the way to do it. If you won’t create new items, then give us ALL the items in a single game. It’s not like it hasn’t been done; the latest arcade version of Mario Kart has 100 items. A hundred.
Mario Kart 8 is an awesome MK title, including some of the most innovative and meaningful changes to hit the franchise. With a huge array of new items, karts, courses and racers to use, and an actual battle mode, MK8 could easily become one of the greatest games on the Wii U. We’ve shown how much potential there is for the future of Mario Kart 8, and this is barely scratching the surface. Will the DLC head in this direction? We can only hope.