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Mario Kart Blitz
Developer(s) Nintendo EPD

Bandai Namco Holdings

Publisher(s) Nintendo
Distributor(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Nintendo Switch
Genre(s) Racing video game
Series Mario Kart
Predecessor Mario Kart 8
Release Date(s) WW: 2018
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer
Mario Kart Blitz is a kart-racing video game developed primarily by Nintendo EPD, with minor assistance from Bandai Namco Holdings, and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch. It is the ninth main series installment in the Mario Kart series and the second installment on the Switch, preceded by Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, with it also being the twelfth overall. Instead of adding massive new features, Blitz improves on the ones found in previous games while also adding new modes, slight adjustments to the gameplay, and plenty of new content.

Gameplay

Blitz retains similar gameplay to its predecessor with up to twelve players choosing from a variety of characters who drive a large assortment of customizable vehicles. Those characters then compete for first place across a multitude of obstacle course-like racetracks while collecting items and coins in order to either help themselves or hinder their competitors. Items are distributed through Item Boxes, which come in both single and double varieties, and the distribution is based primarily on what position and distance from other racers a player is in; for example, higher placing players will often obtain defensive items [e.g. Green Shells and Super Horns] while those falling behind will either receive offensive or speed boost items [e.g. Bullet Bills or Red Shells].

Depending on how players place in a race, they will be rewarded a certain amount of points. These points are added to every racer's total and whether or not a player wins the Grand Prix is based on their final total.

As for the vehicles, all three vehicle classes return from Mario Kart 8 Deluxe being the traditional kart, bikes, and all-terrain vehicles. The trio handles very differently from one another with the bikes having two different drifting styles: inside and outside. Tires and gliders can also be chosen and more parts can either be bought from the shop or unlocked by earning Coins in races. These customization options affect the overall performance of the racer with the maximum total being 21.

Modes

  • Grand Prix - Race against 11 other racers across 4 racetracks in a struggle for first place! 50cc, 100cc, and 150cc are available from the start with Mirror Mode and 200cc available by winning the 150cc Special Cup with three stars and the Mirror Special Cup respectively.
  • Versus - Choose from all 32 of the available tracks, select from a variety of special rules, and then race to the finish either with CPUs or against your friends.
    • Double Dash - Pick a team of two characters and one vehicle to race in as you speed across slightly modified tracks in search of victory.
    • Team Race - Team up with 5 other teammates and collectively score the highest amount of points in order to defeat the opposing team.
  • Battle Mode - Go head to head in a variety of gamemodes on specially dedicated maps! Play with a team or enter a free-for-all to win rewards.
    • Balloon Battle - Use items to pop - or even steal - the other players' five balloons to secure a victory. Whoever has the most popped balloons at the end of the game wins.
    • Bob-omb Blast - Collect Bob-ombs and throw them at opponents to score points. The first player/team to five points wins the battle.
    • Shine Thief - A Shine Sprite has spawned somewhere on the map and you need to find it. If you can keep the Shine in your possession for 30 seconds, you win!
    • Coin Runners - Coins are scattered across the arena and can be collected by any means possible. Whoever has the most coins wins the game.
    • Renegade Roundup - Time for an old fashioned game of "Cops and Robbers"...with a twist! One team must capture the criminals using Potted Piranha Plants while the criminals must free all of their teammates in order to win. Even at the last minute, this game can turn quickly in one team's favor.
    • Shooting Gallery (NEW!) - In a twist on the classic carnival game, players must collect items and then shoot them at enemies who are located along the borders of the stage. The winner is whoever is able to destroy the most enemies and their amount of accuracy when hitting them.
  • Time Trials - Race alone in an attempt to gain the fastest time! Any Time Trial data collected from the Internet appears as ghosts and defeating Staff Ghosts on various courses will earn bountiful rewards. All engine classes are available once unlocked for Grand Prix.
  • Online - Connect to the internet and race or battle against friends or strangers. Customizable communities are also available, returning from Mario Kart 8, and other various options are available. A new addition is voice chat which can be used by purchasing the Nintendo Switch Microphone [released alongside the game].
  • Shop - Purchase downloadable content, vehicle parts, and alternate appearances for in-game characters from this one convenient marketplace.
    • Downloadable Content Shop - Want to expand your game world aside from the basic content? Use some real-world money and buy new characters, tracks, and vehicles in multiple packs released throughout 2018 and 2019.
    • Kart Part Shop (NEW!) - Tired of receiving a random vehicle part after collecting thousands of coins? Trade those coins for a new set of wheels and get in on some exclusive deals. You might even find a few exclusive parts here...
    • Costume Shop (NEW!) - Want Mario to race in his white lab coat and stethoscope or King Boo in his classic appearance? Come here and spend your coins on various looks for you characters! Some are cosmetic and some change entire stats.

New Features

Gameplay Mechanics

  • There is now a day-and-night cycle based primarily on the Nintendo Switch's internal clock. Some courses will have added aesthetic changes or even different hazards depending on the current time; for example, Rustbucket Junkyard has work lights activated at night time, smoke covers the sky of Bowser's Castle in the daytime, and cars on DS Shroom Ridge will have their headlights on at night.
    • Adding to this is a weather cycle shown under the MKTV tab on the main screen. Four types of weather - sunshine, rain, snow, and thunderstorm - will appear randomly on any 150cc or above race/Grand Prix. Rain makes the track slightly more slippery and creates puddles to slip in, snow creates piles which can either slow down racers or possibly distribute an item, and thunderstorms cause lightning bolts to strike the track at random points.
  • Two new Mini-Turbo types have been added being Ultra Mini-Turbos [first seen in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe] and Rocket Mini-Turbos. Rocket Mini-Turbos, denoted by ghostly blue sparks, are akin to the Rocket Start from the beginning of a race in terms of how much longer the boost lasts for and the color of the sparks.
  • A Double Dash mode has been added. Two characters race in one vehicle with one driver and one thrower, similar to the game of the same name.

Courses

Nitro Courses

Cups

MushroomMarioKart8

Mushroom Cup

Blue Shell Bayside Wiggler Railroad Rustbucket Junkyard Cold Storage
FireFlowerSM3DW

Flower Cup

Dry Dry Riverbed Urban Jungle Macro Household Peach's Castle
StarMK8

Star Cup

DK Campgrounds Shiverburn Core Blockstepper Warzone Mario Circuit
Special Cup

Special Cup

Offlimit Badlands Nightmarish Dreamscape Bowser's Castle Rainbow Road

Retro Courses

Cups

200px-GreenShell - MarioPartyStarRush

Shell Cup

Wii
Luigi Circuit
3DS
Daisy Hills
GBA
Sunset Wilds
Wii U
Thwomp Ruins
79px-BananaMK8

Banana Cup

Wii
Toad's Factory
DS
Shroom Ridge
SNES
Mario Circuit 4
3DS
Rock Rock Mountain
SuperLeafSM3DW

Leaf Cup

N64
Wario Stadium
Wii U
Electrodrome
3DS
Maka Wuhu
NGC
Mushroom City
150px-LightningBoltMK8

Lightning Cup

SNES
Vanilla Lake 2
Wii U
Cloudtop Cruise
NGC
Bowser's Castle
GBA
Rainbow Road

Notable changes

  • 3DS Daisy Hills now has several more goats lining the track, anti-gravity sections on both the left-hand shortcut near the end of the hill section and on the rooftops, and a new shortcut where the player can cut behind the spectator stand at the starting line and emerge on the other side with a speed boost waiting for them.
  • GBA Sunset Wilds has gained a gliding section over several tepees and several blocks lining the track can now be raced on. The generic tribal Shy Guys have been replaced with Spear and Chuck Guys and their position on the racer has been moved to the head, removing any potential controversy.
  • Wii Toad's Factory has anti-gravity, gliding, and underwater sections throughout the course.
  • DS Shroom Ridge has a new anti-gravity shortcut near the tunnel.
  • The large jump in N64 Wario Stadium has been replaced with a gliding section. In addition, the course's walls have been lowered slightly, a new anti-gravity section has been added, and the barrier jump glitch from the original has been fixed.
  • The section of road beneath NGC Mushroom City's start line has been changed to a shortcut. New cars have also been added to the track and only interact with players after a race starts.
  • SNES Vanilla Lake 2 takes place almost entirely underwater, with a few sections on land. An anti-gravity shortcut similar to the one in NGC Sherbet Land from Mario Kart 8 has also been added.
  • In NGC Bowser's Castle, the room with the Fire Bars has been expanded slightly and now acts as an anti-gravity section, the jump over the moat is now a gliding section, and Lava Geysers have been added near the start line.
  • GBA Rainbow Road has an anti-gravity section, a gliding section, and has a bit more diverse track layout than its original counterpart.

Battle Arenas

MushroomMarioKart8
Nitro Arenas
Bowser's Airtub Koopa Troopa Coliseum Nintendo Switch Orbital Station Pagoda Peak Starlight Avenue Tangerino Countertop Wario Resort
SMB Supermushroom
Retro Arenas
SNES
Battle Course 2
GBA
Battle Course 4
MK8D
Battle Stadium
N64
Double Deck
Wii
Funky Stadium
NGC
Luigi's Mansion
3DS
Sherbet Rink
DS
Tart Top

Playable Characters

Mario Kart games have had a large variety of characters from different weight classes, genders, races, and even other series and Blitz does not differ from this formula. 12 new characters have joined the roster, which totals out at 48 characters, including forgotten villains Wart and King K. Rool along with Fawful and Ashley from two Mario side series [Mario & Luigi and WarioWare respectively]. Each of these characters is differentiated by their statistics and one of five weight classes. The five classes are Feather, Light, Medium, Cruiser, and Heavy; Feather and Light fall into the category of the Lightweight class, Cruiser and Heavy fall into the category of Heavyweight classes, and Medium is within its own category - the Middleweight class.

New Drivers

Returning Drivers

Items

As with every Mario Kart game, items reappear once more. Most are obtainable from Item Boxes but some are scattered about the track and can be picked up for usage. Four new items - Barrel Cannon, Coin Coffer, Ice Flower, and Magnet - have been added to the roulette while the Coin has been removed.

New Items

Returning Items

Vehicle Parts

Karts

New

Vehicle Speed Acceleration Weight Handling Traction Mini-Turbo
Ground Water Air Anti-Gravity Ground Water Air Anti-Gravity
Standard Kart 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Returning

Vehicle Speed Acceleration Weight Handling Traction Mini-Turbo
Ground Water Air Anti-Gravity Ground Water Air Anti-Gravity

Bikes

New

Vehicle Speed Acceleration Weight Handling Traction Mini-Turbo
Ground Water Air Anti-Gravity Ground Water Air Anti-Gravity
Standard Bike 0 +0.25 +0.25 -0.25 +0.25 -0.25 +0.5 +0.5 +0.5 +0.25 -0.5 +0.25

Trivia

  • Rainbow Road, GBA Rainbow Road, Cold Storage, and Wii U Electrodrome are the only courses not affected by the weather cycle.
  • Blitz can be seen as a remake of AngryLittleYoshi's first page on the wiki - that being Mario Kart 9 - for several reasons.
    • SNES Mario Circuit 4, GBA  Rainbow Road, N64 Wario Stadium, NGC Mushroom City, NGC Bowser's Castle, Wii Toad's Factory, and Wii U Cloudtop Cruise all appear as Retro Courses in both games.
    • Both games' Mushroom Cups contain a course featuring Wigglers as the main gimmick [Wiggler Fields in and Wiggler Railroad in Blitz].
    • The Ice Flower and Magnet appear as new items in both games.
    • Boom Boom, Nabbit, and Professor E. Gadd appear as new drivers in both games.
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