Mario Kart 8 has 32 total courses -- 16 are new and 16 are remakes

Nintendo reveals loads of new details about its upcoming Wii U racing game, launching next month.

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Nintendo's upcoming Wii U racing game Mario Kart 8 will have 32 total courses, sixteen of which are brand-new and the other 16 being "remixed classic courses." Nintendo announced this news today, along with a host of other new details about its much-anticipated game. 2008's Mario Kart Wii also had 32 courses.

Mario Kart 8 will also feature two Rainbow Road courses, of one which is brand-new and the other is a remake of the Nintendo 64 course. We also got to speak with the game's director and producer, who explained why Mario Kart 8 won't be all about luck and that the power of the Wii U allowed Nintendo to create a visually impressive game.

We've rounded up some of the biggest Mario Kart 8 news below. Be sure to also check out our extensive hands-on written preview and video preview embedded above. Mario Kart 8 includes:

  • 12-player online competitive play
  • 4-player local multiplayer
  • A new Spin Boost feature for when you're racing upside down or on walls
  • Returning characters like Metal Mario, Lakitu, and Shy Guy
  • New items: Piranha Plant (attaches to your cart and chomps other players; also gives you speed boost), Boomerang Flower (can be thrown forward or backward at opponents to stun).
  • New courses: Remixed classics include Moo Moo Meadows from Mario Kart Wii, Toad's Turnpike from Mario Kart 64, and Donut Plains from Super Mario Kart. The remade tracks include re-designed and re-imagined graphics and layouts.
  • Live recorded music: For the first time in the history of the Mario Kart series, some courses in Mario Kart 8 will feature music recorded by live performers, though we don't know who.
  • Control options: Wii U GamePad, Wii U Pro Controller, the Wii WHeel, and the Wii Remote and Nunchuck. Also supports off-TV mode.

Mario Kart 8 launches May 30 exclusively for Wii U. Nintendo's latest console is struggling at the moment, and Mario Kart 8 could provide a much-needed sales jolt.

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