Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Booster Course Pass Review: Racing to New Horizons

If you’re a seasoned Nintendo Switch owner, chances are you’ve already indulged in the thrills of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, a game that has etched its name among the highest-selling video games of all time.

Now, with the much-anticipated completion of the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – Booster Course Pass, boasting a whopping 48 new tracks and a handful of additional features, it’s time to explore whether this DLC is a worthy addition to your gaming repertoire.

Visuals and Design

Right out of the gate, critics pointed out disparities in visual quality compared to the base game, especially as some courses were ported from the mobile game Mario Kart Tour. While a side-by-side comparison might reveal some differences, the average player is unlikely to be bothered by these subtleties.

The cartoonish charm of the new courses, coupled with the impressive lighting engine of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, ensures a visually engaging experience.

Gameplay Dynamics

A notable shift in the Booster Course Pass is the reduced emphasis on the anti-gravity mechanic, replaced by a unique twist in Mario Kart Tour courses. Each lap takes you on a slightly different path, mimicking the variants seen in Mario Kart Tour.

This fresh approach introduces a new layer of strategy, allowing racers to take alternative routes and, in some cases, even drive against the flow.

Course Variety and Nostalgia

The 48 new courses are a blend of Mario Kart Tour originals, classic tracks from previous games, and a handful of entirely new creations. The diversity is striking, catering to both nostalgia seekers and those hungry for novel racing challenges.

From Coconut Mall to the Wii version of Rainbow Road, each course seamlessly integrates into Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, even at the breakneck speeds of 200cc.

New Characters and Mii Racer Suits

The Booster Course Pass introduces eight new playable characters, each with their expected weight classes. While some may lament the reuse of assets from Mario Kart Tour, these additions, including Birdo, Kamek, and Funky Kong, bring fresh faces to the racing scene.

The inclusion of 17 new Mii Racer Suits from Mario Kart Tour further expands customization options.

Value for Money and Accessibility

Available both as part of the Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack and as a standalone purchase, the Booster Course Pass offers flexibility to gamers. For those invested in the online experience, the subscription brings added value.

Alternatively, players can opt for the standalone purchase at $24.99/£22.49. Even if online gaming isn’t your primary focus, enjoying the new courses with friends who have access to the DLC remains an option.

As a seasoned Mario Kart 8 Deluxe player with over 300 hours under my belt, the Booster Course Pass feels like a necessary extension. The influx of new challenges, characters, and customization options breathes fresh life into a game that many thought had reached its zenith.

While the DLC may not have addressed all potential wishes, the relatively low cost of entry, coupled with its inclusion in the Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack, makes it an enticing proposition for both casual and dedicated players alike.

Rating: 8/10

Note: Prices and availability mentioned are reflective of the information available up to my last knowledge update in January 2022, and it’s advisable to check for any changes or updates.

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