Mario Kart Impressions

A new system, a new Mario Kart. We get a first look at the latest entry in the long-running franchise.

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Ever since Super Mario Kart wowed the world in 1992, no Nintendo system is truly complete without a Mario Kart title to call its own. Thankfully, the Nintendo 3DS should get its own version soon enough. The demonstration Nintendo had in its booth wasn't playable, but the prerecorded footage looked like a lot of fun, and the 3D visuals were really well done.

The trailer started on a close-up of Mario drifting around a track. The karts look as detailed as the karts you would find in Double Dash, but there isn't an extra seat to slow things down. Instead, the kart designs look like the original in the franchise, which is a welcome return to simplicity. The first track took place outside of Peach's castle, with cherry blossom leaves blowing in the wind. Blue sparks shot off the wheels when we performed a power slide, though it's unclear if you need to quickly wiggle left and right to activate it.

The 3D effects are really well done. While watching Mario and Luigi race toward first place, it looked like a standard Mario Kart game, but items and objects were given the 3D treatment. When Luigi let loose a blooper on Mario, the ink had extra depth. Flying past bats in a cave had the same visual flair, and it was really cool having them fly into our face as we sped past. The newest rendition of Mario Kart looks to continue the franchise's proud tradition. Stay tuned to GameSpot for more coverage of this 3D racing game.

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