Mario Kart Wii Preview
Mario Kart Wii box art
System: Wii Review Rating Legend
Dev: Nintendo 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Nintendo 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: April 27, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-4 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

On another note, everyone get your Miis ready! It seems like not only will we be able to play with long-time favorites but we'll also have the option to put our Miis in those cool, cartoonish little cars and motorcycles. But don't get too anxious! You'll have to demonstrate your skills in Grand Prix first and unlock the Mii support. I'm sure it won't be a big deal for most, plus it's good to have some challenge. The 12 standard characters include Mario, Luigi, DK, Bowser, Peach, Yoshi, Wario, Waluigi, Toad, Baby Mario, Baby Peach, and Koopa Troopa. There are also six secret unlockable characters on top of that. There better be a Goomba!

Mario Kart Wii screenshot

If you consider yourself a Mario Kart expert, stop dreaming of effortless victory! Although the game is not that different from old installments, the gameplay has changed in many ways. In addition to the newly added bikes, which can take sharper turns and give you more chances to accelerate, racers will be performing tricks like a Tony Hawk! From jumpsto wheelies, swirls, and turbo jumps, everything is possible. Drafting, which was available on the DS, has been implemented in Mario Kart Wii as well. It allows players to gain speed by positioning themselves right behind another vehicle; if you're a biker or into sports racing, you know exactly what I'm talking about. Those of you who are used to drifting your way to the end line with power slides in order to obtain mini speed bursts, are out of luck this time because it won't work the same way anymore! You'll have to learn the new tricks before you can master the game. Still, I suspect that won't be a very big challenge for pros of the series.

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As if that wasn't enough changes, there's the Wii Wheel. This new peripheral attaches to the Wii remote, and it will make the Mario Kart experience even better. You can also play without it and use the remote and Nunchuk, the GameCube controller or the classic, but everyone that's tried the game claims the Wii Wheel is sweet and makes the gameplay that much more realistic and exciting. After a small period of adjustment, everyone should be racing like a pro, steering, drifting, and dodging their way to the end. What's more, the Wii Wheel feels so natural even new players might be able to pick-up-and-play the game easily.

From what I've seen in videos and screenshots, the look of the game hasn't changed a whole lot. However, it supports full 480p resolution (Progressive Scan) and Widescreen. That should look good enough in our TVs. As most Nintendo first party games, it looks crisp and colorful. The new tracks look unique and interesting, while still resembling the typical Mario Kart style. It seems like our eyes will be pleased with a few more special effects and more attention to detail, as well as better lighting and texturing.

Mario Kart Wii screenshot

I suggest you guys get back to Mario Kart: Double Dash and start practicing a little. Sharpen up those skills because the new Mario Kart challenge is around the corner, and it looks better than ever!

By Maria Montoro
CCC Site Director


Game Features:

  • The new version of Mario Kart features new vehicles and lets players near and far compete using Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, Nintendo's wireless gaming service.
  • Mario Kart launches with the Wii Wheel (name not final), a steering wheel housing for the Wii Remote that brings new controls and challenges for veteran gamers, while making getting into a race easy and intuitive for newcomers.
  • Screen Resolution: Up to 480p (Progressive Scan, Widescreen).


  • Screenshots / Images
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