Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit

Game title

A bit long

Setup

Don’t know. It was already set up by my 10-year-old son when I got home. Should be easy.

The extra thing is that you need to do, is to create the circuit yourself. This takes a little extra time. But this time is great, because you are not even gaming, but are already playing. My kids used blankets, toilet paper, boxes and Lego. It’s your own imagination.

The setup of my son Noël (7)

Price

Of course too expensive. It’s Nintendo. But because it’s Nintendo, it works flawless. Probably 60 euro (instead of 120) would be fair. At the end it’s only a game, a plastic car with a camera and 4 cardboard pieces.

What I missed is a box with 2 or 3 cars (we have a Switch and a Switch lite for example). Where Nintendo could have make money is to separate the car from the character. Like Amiibo you could have bought new players and who knows use it for another game.

Gameplay

Mario Kart has always been about the gameplay. With the home circuit this is no difference. Generally it’s not different from a normal Mario Kart. All ingredients are there: banana’s, power ups, nasty competitors and ice circuits.

Driving the car works intuitive. When you see the car moving (in 50cc) it seems slow, but on the Switch it’s OK. It takes a little longer to get the hang of it than other Mario Kart games, but that’s part of the fun.

AR Experience

After Pokémon Go, Mario Kart Live is the second AR experience for the masses. I always thought such augmented reality was very natural unlike VR experiences. This was because it blends naturally with the environment.

The opposite is true. I also own an Oculus Quest. There’s a clear distinction between reality and virtual reality. When the virtual reality is done well this feels perfectly well.

In Mario Kart this messes up with your mind. Suddenly you see yourself on the screen, suddenly the cat is chasing my car and suddenly I crash into a table leg.

The cat is a worthy competitor

Conclusion

The AR part really add something to the gameplay and experience. I really hope that more games will follow and also hope (perhaps against our better judgment) that Nintendo introduces multiplayer boxes for a fairer price.

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