Review of Mario Kart 7 for Nintendo 3DS

With a lull in good console games, I decided to pick up a 3DS title. So is this handheld kart racer as good as its other Mario Kart brethren? Read on to find out!

Sound: Lots of classic Mario soundtracks and even some new are all compiled into the game, so the nostalgia factor is high. Sound effects are great too, making you sweat when you hear that blue turtle shell closing in… Sound: 9/10

Presentation: At first glance, the graphics don’t look like anything special. But play long enough, and you’ll start to see that these visuals rival quite a few Wii titles. On top of the impressive graphics, the 3D looks great. Not so great that it’ll be worth using enough to make you sick (read my Nintendo 3DS review for the full scoop) but good enough that it’s worth turning on once in a while. Presentation: 9/10

Gameplay: The gameplay of Mario Kart is identical to its past games, easy to play, hard to master. The controls are basic as can be, but that simplicity adds up to a lot of fun when you throw in the dangerous items and new underwater/sky gameplay elements. The hang glider is a fun new addition that adds a new level of depth to each track, and the underwater segments are always some of the best and most original parts of each course. New items have been added so that things are even more unpredictable during races, and there’s a fair amount of unlockable characters and kart customizations to get. My only gripe with this is that it takes forever to get new customizations/characters, so gameplay becomes a little stale before new unlockables are obtained. Gameplay: 8/10

Multiplayer: Coin battle and balloon battle are just as frantic as ever, especially on the new eight player online multiplayer. I encountered no lag and everything worked perfectly, my only real problem being how long the matchmaking took. But other than that, a great online experience that shows what MK7 is all about. Multiplayer: 8/10

Length: If you’re into grand prix mode, this game will keep you busy for a few hours. The online is great too, being the most addicting part of the package. If you don’t have an internet connection and don’t get a lot of fun out of versing AI through four-track competitions though, this game will be over within the first two hours. Length: 7/10

Overall: Mario Kart 7 gets 8.4 coins out of 10! A great installment to the series, and is a must-buy for any racing fanatics who own a 3DS.

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