"Even 2011's effervescent 3DS outing, Mario Kart 7, feels somewhat lifeless by comparison.The new HD visuals are gorgeous, but Nintendo has also built on 7's neatly interlaced mechanics and introduced a nuanced handling model to create the greatest Mario Kart yet."
"The Mario Kart series' battle arenas were designed to funnel players into each other, but now you'll spend long stretches of time without even catching sight of a potential target as you trek round the circuit."
"But even this isn't enough to detract from an otherwise-joyous follow-up to the series' excellent 3DS outing. That it offers as much of its own innovation again speaks volumes; Mario Kart 8 is as essential a purchase as Super Mario 3D World."
The full review is in both the print and digital versions of the magazine, but it's the first review score released.