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The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School

The Breeze

The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School

The Breeze

The Student News Site of Santa Maria High School

The Breeze

One More Race… – A Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Booster Course Pass Review

3…2…1… Go! Join me as I review the Booster Course Pass from Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.
The+Thank+You+image+that+plays+once+youve+completed+the+Booster+Course+Pass.
Nintendo
The ‘Thank You’ image that plays once you’ve completed the Booster Course Pass.

If I’m being honest, the Booster Course Pass is semi-great. The only reason I’m saying this is because of the Tour maps. The Tour maps were the only bad thing about this pass. They feel too big and doesn’t fit well with the aesthetic of the game. As for the other maps, they’re pretty good. 3DS Rainbow Road is back and has that classic feel to it! Coconut Mall is also back as well, even Waluigi Pinball. Kalimari Desert looks pleasant to the eye. And as for the new character, that’s Funky Kong from the Wii. Overall, the pass is good and highly recommend it if you’re a fan of the classic maps!”

— Lucas Becerra

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe comes to an end with its final DLC (Downloadable Content) update on November 9th, 2023. As some of you may know Mario Kart 8 has been around for years since May 29th, 2014, on the Wii U. Years later when the Nintendo Switch released, one of the few games that would be releasing around the same time as the console, would be Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. It’s pretty much just a port of the Wii U game. It maintains the same play style with added characters and more. If you don’t know how this game works, It’s your typical go-kart racing game with famous Super Mario characters and a few non-Super Mario characters. This game was definitely a good way to stay occupied as more games would release soon, and apparently rumors going around that a new Mario Kart game was in the works. Unfortunately, a new Mario Kart game wasn’t the case. People yearning for new Mario Kart content, but nothing came of it until February 2022 during a Nintendo Direct. It was announced that Mario Kart 8 Deluxe would be receiving 48 more tracks. I remember that announcement like if it was just yesterday. The game would slowly get updated. Each update or “wave” would come with two cups, each cup having four tracks, meaning each wave would have a total of eight tracks. Just as a disclaimer, I won’t be ranking each cup or track, but every wave to avoid making the article long.

Wave 1: Starting off with Wave 1, wow, it’s…really bad. You could tell quality was not on their agenda. It has always been speculated that a majority of the tracks from this wave were directly ported from Nintendo’s mobile game, Mario Kart Tour. The graphics of the tracks didn’t really hold up to how the original tracks from the base game looked like. They didn’t really try changing up the textures to make it somewhat fit with how the base game looked. I was honestly disappointed with how this wave turned out. The choice of the tracks chosen felt rather vague. I’m surprised we didn’t get the good tracks since the beginning. None the less, the tracks were fine to play on. This wave just really lacked love and visuals. I’d say the only good part about this wave was the music. I’ll rate this wave, a 3/10.

Wave 2: Ahh…much better. I guess it’s true about what they say, the sequel is better. This wave was a definitely a big improvement from the previous. The tracks were actually appealing to look at unlike the last wave, what an eyesore. These tracks were also way more fun to play on. This wave included an original new track called Sky-High Sundae. This track is basically what you would get if you mixed heaven and Ice cream. This track was pretty fun to play on since you can do a lot of floaty like tricks or short cuts. This racetrack, however, wasn’t visually appealing. Sure, you can say that it’s supposed to be bright and colorful because it’s supposed to be a track with the theme of sweets, but I feel like they could’ve made it look less like something out of a mobile game. Funny enough, this track was featured on Mario Kart Tour soon after the second wave came out. So much for being an original track, huh? One of the returning tracks from Mario Kart DS, Waluigi Pinball, was lacking something important. A new cover of the song. So basically, the song in the racetrack shares it with another racetrack in the game, Wario Stadium. Both those tracks also had the same situation from their original debut in Mario Kart DS. You could forgive them the first time, but I just felt like they could’ve made the song sound different. They have the resources to do it, why not take advantage of those resources?  I’m glad they didn’t change the music too much on Mushroom Gorge. They gave it more depth to it. It’s a similar case to what they did with Grumble Volcano in the base game. The tracks were fun none the less to race on and the music was amazing to listen to. This wave would be a 7/10.

Wave 3: Wow! They just keep getting better and better! I was really amazed by this wave. When this wave came out, I was just playing on it, over and over and over again. This wave just had a lot of fun tracks. Boy, I’ll tell ya, I had a lot of nostalgia playing on these racetracks considering most of these come from the previous Mario Kart games that I had owned. A good example was Rainbow Road from Mario Kart 7. When I saw it, I was just amazed by the visuals on the track, it sure did get an upgrade. What really got me was the song. Once the song began playing, it felt like I got transported into the past, seeing myself playing on that same track years ago on my Aqua Blue Nintendo 3DS. I felt a bit emotional while racing on the track. I mean, who would’ve guessed that this track was going to make a return, I sure didn’t. You could almost say that this track defines a good part of my childhood that I miss. What more could I say? The tracks were fun to play on and the music is better than ever! This wave deserves a 10/10.

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Wave 4: Now this wave is just alright. It’s got decent racetracks. The visuals are pretty neat for this wave. The music is pretty good as well. We were able to get an original racetrack called Yoshi’s Island. If it wasn’t obvious already, this track is based off the first Yoshi’s Island game. I really loved this racetrack. The bright visuals actually worked out for this track because the Yoshi’s Island games have always been cheerful and colorful. I liked all the references they added to the track. I also really loved the song that plays when you get your results after the race. It’s a different song than what usually plays once you complete a track. It’s another nod to Yoshi’s Island. I had a blast playing on this track considering I used to play Yoshi’s Island a lot when I was younger. I also loved playing on Singapore Speedway. It was just so much fun to race on. The visuals on the track were phenomenal. It felt like I was racing on a roller coaster in Vegas. I’ll give this wave a rating of a 9/10.

Wave 5: This was an amazing wave to play on. The visuals stayed roughly the same, up to quality. This wave gave me also gave me loads of nostalgia since a few of these tracks were also from games I previously played on. Out of all the tracks, Daisy’s Cruiser was my favorite. This track certainly improved from its last appearance. The music was also good to hear. It felt more tropical than its previous counterpart. Well, you could say that with all the tracks, the music was very nice. There’s a track called Los Angeles Laps which obviously is a track based on Los Angeles. If you’ve been there, you’d like all the little references in the track. However, a nitpick that I have with this track is that they removed the vocals from it. In Mario Kart Tour, they had vocals playing in the song which made it almost pleasant to listen to. I don’t know why they did this, truly a missed opportunity. This wave also gave us an exclusive track called, Squeaky Clean Sprint. It’s basically a racetrack that takes place in a bathroom. I remember seeing on the internet before Wave 5 was shown to the public, the leaks and rumors going around that a bathroom themed racetrack was set to release. It was a silly thought at first, but wouldn’t you know it, we got the bathroom track. The music on that track was very jazzy and calm. Something that I loved about Mario Kart 8 was how they made the music come to life, especially when they did jazz covers for some of the songs. I’ll give this wave, a 9/10.

Wave 6: We finally made it, the last wave. Wave 6 was certainly an interesting one as the tracks featured in the wave, were ones people weren’t expecting. I know for a fact that people weren’t expecting Rosalina’s Ice World to make a return. The visuals on this wave were amazing. I feel like they did a lot of lighting improvements on this wave, compared to the other ones. The music was also amazing to listen to. This was another wave where I kept replaying it over and over. I just really loved what they did with the visuals here. The tracks were fun to play on, I mean, what more could I say, I had a blast playing on this wave. Rainbow Road from Mario Kart Wii was certainly a good way to end the Booster Course Pass. I’ll give this wave a 10/10.

Other: Besides getting new tracks for the game we also got some other content. With almost every wave coming to the game there’d usually be some kind of update to it. One of the updates that I thought was pretty cool was if you were to choose the VS Race or Battle mode, you’d have the chance to pick which items you want or don’t want on your playthrough. I’m surprised this wasn’t done much earlier but hey, better late than never. Most of these updates just usually fix some bugs that can be easily fixed, so I won’t go into detail on the bug fixes as they’re not really too important for the review, in my opinion. Eventually we’d get new characters to join the roster. We got returning characters like Funky Kong, Diddy Kong and Birdo as well as getting new characters like Kamek, Pauline and Peachette. I’m not the biggest fan of Peachette. I feel like someone better could’ve taken her spot like Dixie Kong or Donkey Kong Jr. Mario Kart 8 had too many clone characters when it first came out. They made about a portion of the roster which was just awful. We also got more Mii costumes. If you had amiibos, you could scan those on your console and get some kind of perk or extra content. If you don’t know what an amiibo is, they’re basically collectible figures on a stand that have some kind of purpose for said game, whether it’s training a character or part of the game, it’s really up to said game. They were a big deal during the Wii U era. So, what did the amiibo’s do for Mario Kart 8. Well, once you’d scan them, you’d get a special racing outfit for your Mii character that’d be based off of Nintendo and non-Nintendo characters. I never had amiibos growing up, so I always had to stick with the basic racing outfit, but I sure am glad the update came with several Mii costumes. I like using the Blooper one, it looks cute. We’d also get the option to listen to all the tracks from the game as seen on the title screen for the game. And lastly, we got a proper credits sequence. People were disappointed that the credits felt underwhelming and vague, compared to the other Mario Kart games. They all had that special charm to them. I’m glad to say they were able to make that up to the fans, and gave the credits that special feel to it, just like how they’ve been doing it in the past with that special thank you image. Truly wonderful!

Conclusion: In conclusion, this DLC was very much needed to bring back new and old fans of the Mario Kart series. I had a great time playing old and new tracks. The nostalgia is real I tell you. It was just so nice playing these tracks. It felt like I was back to my childhood when everything was simple. I think Nintendo knew what they were doing, they were heavily relying on people’s nostalgia for it to sell good. My sister and I had a wonderful time playing together. We usually bond together when it comes gaming, so I’m really glad Mario Kart 8 Deluxe got some new content since that’s her favorite game. Are there other tracks that deserved to be in the Booster Course Pass, absolutely. I feel like Nintendo could’ve done a bit more to make the Booster Course Pass worth buying. Maybe they could’ve heard from their fans, making sure this DLC would be the best one out there. Perhaps adding more battle tracks or battle modes, some more characters. Heck, even adding a settings option would’ve been good too. There are tracks where you could barely here the music on and I just sit there playing, wondering why the music is so low. You end up hearing the voices and other sound effects instead, which is pretty disappointing. If there’s something the I wasn’t a big fan, was the amount of Mario Kart Tour tracks that were present. More original or previous tracks from the console releases would’ve been better. But it makes sense why they brought over so many of the Tour tracks. Nintendo would eventually stop adding new content to the game on October 4th, 2023. However, the Tour tracks were fun to play on none the less. I’ll miss watching all the speculation of what tracks and characters were going to get in the DLC. I had a lot of fun playing it with family and friends over the holidays! I’m glad the hype was there but all good things must come to an end. My final rating for the entirety of the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Booster Course Pass would be… a 9/10.

Racing on 3DS Rainbow Road. The best Rainbow Road out of all of them! (Rodrigo Garcia)
Finished 1st place on 3DS Rainbow Road! (Rodrigo Garcia)

 

 

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Rodrigo Garcia
Rodrigo Garcia, Contributor
My name is Rodrigo Garcia. This will be my first and final year as a Breeze Contributor as I am now a senior. If I would've known about the Journalism class earlier, I definitely would've joined. As I mentioned already, I'm a senior, Class of 2024. Some goals that I have while working on the Breeze is to hopefully release more podcast episodes, get even more articles published than before, and hopefully start doing some video production. I've always been pretty decent with handling video production so once we hopefully start to do videos, I could be a helping hand with it. Some stuff I like to do in my free time is draw. I usually prefer to draw digitally on my computer. Traditional drawing, not so much. I don't mind it, but I usually sketch when it comes to traditional drawing. But in all honesty, I love all things art. I even try to read books to understand the past history of art. I also love to play video games. I've been playing video games for most of my time being alive. I don't play very often because of school and other stuff I prioritize but I still try my best to make time to play a game whether if it's by myself or with my sister, it's all fine with me. I like to do voice acting/voice impressions. As someone who's been watching TV for years there's no doubt that the interest of mimicking voices was something I liked. I'm pretty good with doing voices from cartoons from the 60's to early 2000's. If you know some kind of show, chances are I might have a voice impression for that. I also love to go on walks. I'm not the sporty type of person but I always appreciate a nice walk, especially in the afternoons. I try to take long walks with my dog, but he gets easily distracted by the slightest noise or thing so he's all over the place, making it pretty annoying even to just walk to the other side of the area. I really hope we get a lot of work done this year to keep the staff and students informed of all types of media. As well as getting creative not only here on The Breeze, but on campus as well.
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