Mario Kart Tour
© 2019 Nintendo of America, Inc.
Free with IAP up to $70, Optional $5 Monthly Subscription
192.7 MB, Android, iPhone, iPad
Teaches: Racing, reaction time, hand-eye coordination, competitive multiplayer
Laguages: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, Chinese (traditional), Chinese (simplified), Korean
The popular kart racing series featuring Mario and friends now has its own free to play entry on your smart phone (with IAP and a monthly subscription option to access additional features). Race for first against players across the world on tracks from across the Mario Kart serie...
The popular kart racing series featuring Mario and friends now has its own free to play entry on your smart phone (with IAP and a monthly subscription option to access additional features). Race for first against players across the world on tracks from across the Mario Kart series. Requires a Nintendo account to begin playing. While racer names are user-generated, the racers themselves are computer-controlled, an odd deception on Nintendo's part. This mobile iteration manages to capture much of the charm and chagrin of the original: Rocket boost starts, slipstreaming and other advanced tactics to pull ahead of the competition return, and so have bob-ombs, bullet bills, blue shells and all the hazards of your typical Mario Kart circuit to keep the action unpredictable. Mario Kart fans will be immediately familiar with one-to-one recreations of their favorite stages, including their clever shortcuts. Touch controls are rigid -- making players choose between drifting or normal steering when swiping left or right, along with a very unwieldy gyro steering option. Normal steering is easiest to control, and wide turns still result in speed boosts, but drifting is objectively the more skill-based, rewarding option though it's also easier to mess up and lose speed if not utilized properly. In-App Purchases present themselves in none too subtle a fashion. A cheerful cloud-riding turtle named Lakitu guides you through the process of spending Rubies (premium currency) to fire character and kart unlocks out of a pipe (loot boxes) as you've barely even put foot to pedal. Rubies can be purchased with real money, up to $70 for 135 rubies, or roughly 30 pipe launches, which means 30 chances to get random stuff you don't know if you want. You could buy the newest Mario Kart complete with more characters, tracks and modes for $10 less. A $5 monthly subscription promises double rewards from periodic gift unlocks, and grants access to the 200cc mode where the best in-game value can be obtained. The in-game shop updates daily and provides set unlocks using coins earned through racing. Rubies can also be spent on the Coin Rush minigame where you race a golden Mario through bundles of coins (this also seems like an ironic representation of the cash cow Mario Kart Tour views itself as). You'll find rubies are not earned so quickly, and opportunities to actually get content you want are few and far between, if you know the principles of gacha games; essentially digital toy capsule vending machines, you understand what Mario Kart Tour is going for. You can do your best to ignore the digital soliciting, and beyond it there's a decent quality, enjoyable racer here to play on the go. If you own a Nintendo console however, you'll quickly find any mainline Mario Kart title the preferable experience.