Nothing can compare to the excitement of hitting your friend with a red shell before they get to the finish line and zooming past them. When our generation hears someone say Mario Kart, they probably get a huge wave of nostalgia of playing Mario Kart with friends and family. So when the mobile game Mario Kart Tour was released on Sept. 25 people were eager to give it a test drive.

“Being able to play Mario Kart on my phone is great, I’ve always been a fan of the game since I was little. Though I was skeptical, mobile games are usually trash,” 11th grade Gamer Kaleb Burro said. 

The makers of Mario Kart Tour transitioned the gameplay and feel of Mario Kart to a mobile device very nicely. It still feels like console Mario Kart even without a controller. The popularity of the game is also seen in the 10.1 millions downloads on launch day, breaking launch day download records. 

People’s favorite characters like Mario, Princess Peach, and Toad are in the game although players must unlock them. Great maps from previous Mario Karts are also in the new version plus a new variety of maps, with some based on real life locations like New York. 

But for most people that is where the positives end and the elephants in the room begin to become visible. 

“The lack of multiplayer in the game just gets rid of what makes Mario Kart so special,” 11th grade gamer Mike Davis said.

Most people who have played Mario Kart would agree that playing with friends is what makes it exciting and fun, so it is interesting that Nintendo would wait to add multiplayer to Tour. Perhaps they want to add it later in the game’s life when the game is starting to lose its player base.

On top of a lack of multiplayer, another thing that has made some people gripe is the microtransactions and “pay-to-win” aspects that have been included in the game. In order to unlock character, karts, and other things players need to open pipe “loot boxes” that feels awfully like gambling. Although it is a free to play game, this atrocious business model has been expected by gamers. Adding microtransactions into games and mobile apps especially, has become a hated trend as of late in the gaming industry. 

Though people will call this game a blatant cash grab, there is undoubtedly fun to have in this game. Mario Kart on a portable device is something that is a very novel concept and will have a solid fan base even with its flaws. Hopefully Nintendo, a company that has a history of caring about their titles, plans to make Mario Kart Tour develop better and better and not just let it die akin to Super Mario Run that was released 3 years ago.