Nintendo may have been slow on the uptake when it came to DLC but they aren't messing around now. Following on the heels of costume and character DLC for Hyrule Warriors, they've just announced two enormous content packs for Mario Kart 8. Pack 1 adds Tanooki Mario and Cat Peach from Mario 3D World, and also for the first time Link from Legend of Zelda and four new carts including the Blue Falcon vehicle from F-Zero. Pack 2 adds Dry Bowser and both the Villager and Isabelle from Animal Crossing, with an additional four new carts. Each pack also adds 8 new courses for a whopping 16 tracks spanning retro favorites and new additions, expanding the game's course list by 50%.
The first DLC pack drops later this fall, while the second is coming in spring 2015. Each will cost $7.99 individually, or $11.99 bundled together, and if you pre-purchase both you'll immediately gain access to eight new colors of Yoshi and Shy Guy characters.
Needless to say, I'm pretty psyched about this announcement. Nintendo is finally doing something I've been wanting for years: turning their somewhat stale, Mario-centric racing game into a crazy Smash Bros.-esque "Nintendo Cart" with the addition of their other franchises. This is also a huge step toward crafting the ultimate Mario Kart game, with (hopefully) access to the entire back catalog of courses from previous games and new ones to keep me playing years into the future.
There is no doubt Nintendo is capitalizing on the runaway popularity of Mario Kart 8 and the new IP characters are a clear move toward opening up the game for their Amiibo figure platform. Here's hoping that we see Samus, Star Fox, Kirby and Kid Icarus characters make their Mario Kart debut sometime in 2015.
Link, Isabelle and Animal Crossing Villager All Get Ready to Race
REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Two new downloadable content packs will take the world of Mario Kart 8 in directions the franchise has never seen before, while significantly expanding game-play options. The packs, which launch this fall and in spring of 2015, and are available for advance purchase starting Aug. 27 at $7.99 each (or $11.99 for both), deliver a ton of new content, including first-time crossover characters like Link from The Legend of Zelda franchise and both Isabelle and the Villager from the Animal Crossing series.
Two new downloadble packs, which launch this fall and in spring of 2015, and are available for advance purchase now at $7.99 each (or $11.99 for both), deliver a ton of new content, including first-time crossover characters like Link from The Legend of Zelda franchise. (Photo: Business Wire)
In addition to these two new downloadable content packs, a previously announced game update goes live Aug. 27 that adds a variety of new features, including three free Mercedes-Benz cars that players can race: the modern Mercedes-Benz GLA, the 300 SL Roadster from the 1950s and the legendary Silver Arrow of the 1930s. Go to http://ninten.do/6181WR6B to view a video of the in-game karts in action.
“More than 1 million Wii U owners in the United States alone are already enjoying the fun of Mario Kart 8,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of Sales & Marketing. “Mario Kart 8 already includes the largest number of characters, karts and options of any Mario Kart game to date, and these amazing expansion packs give players even more choices.”
Each pack will contain two new cups, each with four courses, which, in total, increases the number of currently available courses by 50 percent. The DLC packs include classic courses like Wario’s Gold Mine from Mario Kart Wii, as well as new courses, some taking place in the worlds of The Legend of Zelda and Animal Crossing. New vehicles will also arrive with each pack, including the Blue Falcon kart representing the F-Zero franchise in the first DLC pack.
Mario Kart 8 owners who purchase both packs starting Aug. 27 will get access to eight new colors of Yoshi and eight new colors of Shy Guy to race with immediately. To purchase the packs in advance, users with a broadband Internet connection can click the new “Shop” icon in the game or visit the Nintendo eShop on Wii U.
The DLC packs are scheduled to include the following:
Pack 1: The Legend of Zelda X Mario Kart 8 (Release Date: November 2014) - $7.99
Pack 2: Animal Crossing X Mario Kart 8 (Release Date: May 2015) - $7.99
Pack 1 + Pack 2 Bundle - $11.99
For more information about Mario Kart 8, visit http://mariokart8.nintendo.com