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One of the best aspects of the last two Mario Kart games – Mario Kart DS and Mario Kart Wii – is that they both allowed you to do battle online against friends as well as strangers, and Mario Kart 7 is wisely maintaining that tradition. Below, Nintendo explain a bit more about what you can expect from the online component of their latest Mario Kart title…

The upcoming Mario Kart 7 game for the portable Nintendo 3DS system which launches across Europe on 2nd December 2011, delivers a brand new racing experience by air, land and sea. Longtime fans of the franchise will encounter new features and customisation options, while newcomers will love racing with their favourite Mushroom Kingdom characters against opponents near and far.

At the heart of Mario Kart is multiplayer racing. Using a broadband Internet connection or local wireless built into the Nintendo 3DS, players can race against their own friends or even against opponents worldwide. The new Community feature allows players to create groups with other Mario Kart fans, while setting up specific rules to make customised racing environments. Easy set-up allows players to quickly create a community and share with others via StreetPassfeature. Community leaderboards will also show the most up to date information from recent races. Solo players can race through the Grand Prix and Time Trial modes using either the Circle Pad layout or the motion-sensitive gyro controls of the system to steer their karts. The gyro controls also allows players to control their karts in a first person perspective, a feature never before seen in the Mario Kart franchise.

Mario Kart 7 will also use StreetPass and SpotPass features built into the Nintendo 3DS system. Walking by other Mario Kart 7 players in real life with StreetPass allows users to exchange racing scores, win/loss records, number of collected coins and other game data. With SpotPass enabled, players will be able receive ghost data to race against. Up to seven ghosts can be downloaded at the same time allowing for a full eight player race. Additionally, a Mario Kart channel will be will be a central location for players to view information collected through StreetPass and SpotPass.

Every iteration of the Mario Kart series introduces new twists and turns and this newest Mario Kart game is no different. New playable characters include Metal Mario from the Super Mario 64 characters. New power-ups include the Fire Flower and Super Leaf. The Fire Flower allows players to throw blazing balls of fire at other drivers and the Super Leaf makes the Tanooki Tail appear on the back of karts to knock other drivers and items out of the way. And, of course, the karts come equipped with gliders for manoeuvering through the air and Propellers for underwater propulsion.

The Mushroom Cup and Flower Cup introduce eight new courses, including ones on Wuhu Island and one created by Retro Studios set in the jungles from the Donkey Kong Country Returns game. The Shell Cup and Banana Cup feature eight classic courses, including Luigi’s Mansion from the Nintendo DS and Koopa Beach from the Nintendo 64. There will be 16 new courses and 16 classic courses total.

Mario Kart 7 is due for release on the Nintendo 3DS on Friday, December 2nd 2011.

Watch the Mario Kart 7 trailer below:

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Team Zavvi


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