Many high school students can remember playing Mario Kart when they were younger. Unfortunately, with Nintendo consoles being more kid-friendly when compared to other consoles, some teenagers haven’t touched the series in years. This Mario Kart drought is now coming to an end, however; at least for some amount of time. With the release of the mobile game Mario Kart Tour, teens are finding a new, more accessible way to play the racing classic.
Mario Kart Tour was announced by Nintendo on Aug. 26 and was released this past Tuesday. Already, the game is taking students by storm; Klein Cain is no exception. Many students have found the time they’d normally use to text their friends instead of being used to play the new entry into the Mario Kart franchise.
“I don’t love the game or anything but it’s a way to pass the time, and it’s fun to play,” senior Alexander Scanell said. “I see myself playing it long-term.”
Students are finding a lot of enjoyment about how easy the game is to play. Unlike Mario Kart’s console entries, the kart you drive is constantly in motion. You do not control the speed, instead only controlling the car’s motion. Making sharp turns will cause the player to drift, which will result in a boost for the kart once the drifting motion is over. Items from other Mario Kart games will also be found in Tour and can be used just by tapping the screen.
“I haven’t gotten a chance to play it but I can see it’s getting very popular,” senior Francis King said. “I can tell it’s going to become a new trend if it hasn’t already.”
Members of the 2020 and 2021 classes will likely remember how the Fortnite craze of 2017 and 2018 affected Klein Cain, especially the game’s mobile release. Mario Kart Tour’s breakthrough is certainly analogous, however, it has not been seen whether it will be able to maintain the same momentum that Fortnite managed.
“Everyone’s playing the game,” senior Brian Esparza said. “It’s a fun game but it’s distracting to my learning environment.”
While most teachers aren’t too strict about phone usage in class, some faculty members are stringent than others. The science department at Klein Cain issued a policy banning phone usage of any sort in science classrooms during the 2018-2019 school year. This was likely influenced by mobile games’ increased popularity following Fortnite’s mobile release.
After the release of both Pokémon Go and Super Mario Run in 2016, Nintendo definitely has a better hold on the mobile gaming market. Mario Kart Tour is available on both Apple and Android devices. It is free-to-play but also features in-app purchases.