New Mario Kart 8 DLC links up to even greater fun

The Legend of Zelda x Mario Kart 8 DLC

Tanooki Mario and Cat Peach race along Yoshi Circuit, a returning course from Mario Kart: Double Dash. The track and the characters are new with the DLC set.

Tanooki Mario and Cat Peach race along Yoshi Circuit, a returning course from Mario Kart: Double Dash. The track and the characters are new with the DLC set.

Galen Alaks, Staff Reporter

What’s better than a Mario Kart game? The only thing I can think of is more courses, characters, and vehicles to try out in a Mario Kart game, which the Legend of Zelda x Mario Kart 8 downloadable content (DLC) delivered superbly.

What is in this DLC pack? You can see most of it in the below image.

All the goods in the DLC pack. Now you understand why so many Mario fans have been drooling for the last three months.

In short, the DLC pack is absolutely spectacular. All the vehicles are really fun to play with, specifically the B Dasher and Tanooki Kart, and there are enough of them to offer a great variety.

The characters in the DLC pack are also lots of fun to play as. It’s cool to see Link racing along in a big, pink sportscar with giant orange wheels, something we haven’t and probably will never see in a Legend of Zelda game. Tanooki Mario and Cat Peach are both fun to play as as well, although at first I was skeptical as to the addition of Cat Peach. But it only took one lame cat joke (“that was cat-astrophic”) to remind me of Julie Newmar’s portrayal of Catwoman in the ‘60s Batman TV show and to get me to realize she wasn’t all bad. In fact, Cat Peach and Tanooki Mario have stats shared by no other character in the whole game!

The new courses are some of the best around. The Egg Cup kicks off with Mario Kart: Double Dash’s Yoshi Circuit, which is a nice, positive opener, although it does lack some Piranha Plants that were in previous versions. Next up is Excitebike Stadium, a course that changes its layout every time you play and requires jump boosts to get maximum speed. Third is Dragon Driftway, an ancient Japanese-themed course which, while not the best course of them all, has a superb design and setting better than any of the new courses. The Egg Cup ends with the F-Zero inspired course, Mute City. It’s a high-speed, futuristic race requiring you to hit recharge panels to collect coins, offering for a different, original experience.

The Triforce Cup opens with Mario Kart Wii’s very own Wario’s Gold Mine, which features lots of antigravity and replaces its halfpipes with tricks to collect coins. Next up is Super Mario Kart’s, the very first game’s, Rainbow Road which, though not different in layout from its Mario Kart 7 incarnation, offers spectacular graphics and music. Going on we come to my personal favorite, Ice Ice Outpost, which features a drilling expedition by some Toads in the arctic. The course doesn’t seem very difficult at first playthrough, but gets extremely tricky when not one but three extremely dangerous but also helpful shortcuts tempt and trap racers or provide them with the boost they need to pull ahead. Finally, the Legend of Zelda-inspired Hyrule Circuit ends the DLC set with an original race with Deku Babas, Rupees, and a shortcut found only through typical Legend of Zelda puzzle solving.

The main problem with the DLC tracks, however, is that not a single one of them features an underwater section! Besides that, the DLC pack is a great addition to Mario Kart 8. For approximately eight dollars, the DLC set is way worth the price, and it gets even better when you can get both DLC packs preordered for only six dollars each, and you even get multicolored Yoshis and Shy Guys! With great characters, tracks, and vehicles, the only question that remains is this: can the Animal Crossing x Mario Kart 8 DLC pack planned for May live up to the Legend of Zelda x Mario Kart 8 DLC pack? Only time will tell!