Review: Mario Kart Tour

Review: Mario Kart Tour

What do you mean this text is different then the excerpt text? How is any different then normal? You noticed? Then you can help me get rid of


Year: 2019

Played on: Mobile (Android)

Also on: iOS

Developer: Nintendo

Publisher: Nintendo


Microtransaction knee-jerk reaction


Date posted: September 30, 2019




So it’s finally come to this. One of Nintendo’s most popular game sub-series of all-time (and arguably, one of the most successful spinoffs of all time) comes to mobile….

I don’t think Mario Kart needs an introduction, but here’s one anyway! Established in 199X as a spin off to the hugely popular series of platformer games starring, you guessed it, Luigi- The series has grown into this huge thing that can’t be toppled. Many have tried, and even had some great attempts at taking down the franchise- Sonic Racing Transformed. Modnation Racers. Crash Team Racing…. All great games in their own right.. but not successful as the king of the kart himself!

Anyway, it was only a matter of time that Nintendo entered the Mobile market once again. They biggest success is actually their Fire Emblem title Heroes, Believe it or not. They also had an Animal Crossing game (that I talked about briefly before) and a meh Dr. Mario puzzle game. They even had an actual Mario “game” called Super Mario Run…. which was… eh. However, now it’s time for something even bigger…. Enter Mario Kart…. on your phone!

“Mario Kart …on my phone… for free?” You may be saying to yourself, because your’re insane like me. “There has to be some kind of catch!”

Well… Yeah… about that.

If you follow the trends now and days, you can see that… yeah. Tour is being blasted by critics. I mean, it’s only been out for a week…. but you can see critics already blasting it for it’s mictrotransactions and possible pay to win nature (that could royally mess up multiplayer, if they’re not careful)

So this is more of a “First impressions” then a review… But I think I can see the bad… and the good…. (but mostly the bad) on what the future holds for this nifty, greedy, unbalanced, fun but jarring little game, and can see why so many are upset… But at the same time, I do see this title’s dim silver lining. So let’s just jump right into it! As Mario would say, “Please get them out of my head. I’m tired of seeing their rotting faces standing above me every morning, reminding of something I’ll never have….” Uh…. I mean….


“Let’s a go!”


Well, first things first…. It’s Mario Kart! If a bit watered down, at the very least. The karts accelerate by themselves, which is both a good and bad thing (see CONS). You can easily turn and even drift by swiping left and right, and can easily use items with a tap of the lower part of the screen. It works…. to a fault (again… see CONS)

But yes- It’s a Mario Kart game! You got items, boost pads, a whole range of crazy characters to unlock (if your lucky enough. Pay up, homestuck!) The whole thing, at it’s heart, is Mario Kart. It feels sounds, and plays like a Mario kart usually does. It even has features from 7, like the ability to go underwater and fly though the air (it seems to be mostly based off of 7 overall). It’s Mario Kart on your phone!

Some tracks have new variations that add a bunch of ramps of junk to the map.

Even better is that there’s new content! Yes, most of the content is just tracks from MK 7, but there is also some new, neat twists. First of all, there are new tracks to play on! Right now, there’s a New York tracks that pretty great, with more tracks coming in future updates. There’s even new track layouts for older tracks, which add a bunch of crazy jumps and ramps everywhere, which really spice things up and keep things interesting. There’s also reverse tracks as well, which really liven up the joint!

New York is one of the new tracks in the game. You can almost hear he NY stereotypes  like “YO! I’M WALKING HERE!”

So yeah… it’s Mario Kart! For free! On your phone! What’s the catch?

Well… Yeah… About that.

Whoa… Deja vu!


I didn’t mention, but MKT also has new characters! Pauline makes her first appearance in a MK game! Well, how do you unlock her? Beat all the current cups in 150cc? No. Place 1st in all the races? Nope. Collect all the grand stars in each cup. Haha no. Okay, how about unlocking her with coins? Can I do that? PFHAHAHA? How about you spend around (and I did the math) $210 to get her, guaranteed (price estimate to open 100 loot boxes, which your are guaranteed to get at least the “spotlight character”)! Or, like a pleb, you can just pull randomly using premium currency dulled out a slow rate and hope the RNG gods are on your side!

Yeah, MKT does what all these other mobile games are doing…. Gacha lootbox bullshit. Now to be fair, the game does give you some premium currency (rubies, in this case. It’s always some kind of gems in these mobile games….) to open a few lootboxes (Pro Tip: Your chances seem to be better by opening 10 at a time, also saving you 5 rubies in the process).

Here’s one of my pulls- all done with currency I got by actually playing the game. Notice the Super Rare Kart and my 2nd Mario pull? Maybe this system is more generous then it let’s on…… PFHAHAHA! YEAH RIGHT!

What really sucks is that another newcomer, Peachette, is also locked behind these lootboxes… but the most outrageous has to be the plumber himself. That’s right… you don’t get Mario in Mario Kart from the onset… He has to be unlocked first!

They made a Mario Kart game… where you potentially don’t play as Mario. Let that sink in…..

Well, that’s not all, folks! Thankfully, this game doesn’t have a stamina system.. could you imagine paying to gas up your kart between races, or being have to wait for your gas to fill up? (Oh god. Nintendo…. DON’T DO IT!) Indeed- you can play the races as many time as your heart desires! Just don’t expect to level up Characters, Karts or Gliders as much as you want…. or make more then 300 coins a day.

Yep- there’s a limit to how much XP and coins you can get each and every day.

The game knows when you have had enough, apparently. When did XP become hard liquor?

And we’re still not done with my complaints! (Unfolds huge list that unfurls outward in a comical fashion). The RNG feels every bit as bad as Mario Kart Wii (for those who haven’t played, it can be pretty awful) So many races could have been run if it weren’t for a random red shell or a bombardment of other racers coming at you. Add the frustration of not having enough points to get 5 grand stars (which are needed to progress and open gifts) and it becomes an unpleasant experience. This is definitely true about the new New York level, which seems to have demanding requirements to get all 5 grand stars (have to have Pauline/Musician Mario and a certain kart and glider) It’s just…. UGHHH!

I swear to god, the game doesn’t give you items you need to Daily Challenges on purpose. Do you know how many races it took just for this item, which I needed to do a daily challenge, to appear?

Finally, there’s the gold pass. For $5 a month (which go to some starving African babies, you greedy son of a-) you too can have access to the fastest race class, 200cc. But that’s not all! You get a bunch of premium loot from gifts, and even some special challenges to complete. It just feels… not good. Sure, it’s only $5 a month, but for a few bucks more, you can get Hulu with ads, or hell, even 1/4 a year of Nintendo Switches Online Service, which has a bunch of NES and SNES game included with it. The worst part is that super rare characters and karts can be obtained though the gold pass (like Metal Mario) but not with normal gifts. Sure, you can still get these though lootboxes, but you still have to pay/grind for it. Just don’t do it. Only good thing is that there’s a free two week trial, so you can use that to get some of those rewards…. and I recommend doing that, and then canceling.

It’s a sad part of mobile games that will never go away… but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, my friends. We can come together and fight this menace… which is why I purpose a pledge….

We going to play Mario Kart Tour alright… but not the way Nintendo wants us to! Were going to play…. without spending a single dime! Yeah! Let’s see how they like them apples! I urge everyone to not give Nintendo one red cent, and instead, buy good Nintendo products. Want a better Mario Kart? Buy MK8 Deluxe! Want more Zelda? Buy Link’s Awakening! Want F-Zero? Buy some anti-depressants, because it ain’t happening!

Also, the controls need some work. Something feels off, and even though I did get used to it, it still needs fine tuning. Controller support would be good- but this is Nintendo. Always behind the times…..

Also no Luigi. That’s like a million points off right there! He’s in the bloody title screen, for christ’s sake!


Despite my laundry list of complaints, I’m actually enjoying MKT… though, yeah, it does feel dirty…. almost like stealing your neighbors cable, or petting someone else’s dog in front of your own dog. I’ll still be playing, and giving updates whenever they become available- especially if there’s some special events where Nintendo gives a bunch of s@#t away, like DBZ Dokkan does (which does this kind of Gacha s@#t right, in my opinion. Shame I don’t play that one anymore.

Anyway, this consensus isn’t final- Instead, ever changing. I’ll post the various different things and events when they happen. Right now, it sits comfortably in the middle, microtranactions and highway robberies in all.

Also, there’s no multiplayer- everyone you race is a CPU with name of a random player, for some reason. I heard it’s ghost data, but I’m not sure.

Real Mutiplayer will make or break this game. Again… if Nintendo messes this up, MKT is as good as dead!

I’d say play it…. just don’t give Nintendo any money!


Agree? Disagree? Good! Leave a comment about how terrible my taste is in the comments below! F.

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