Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Review: Mario Kart Double Dash!!

Mario Kart Double Dash is the fourth game in the Mario Kart racing series and definitely a good addition to the series. It was released for the Gamecube in 2003. Unlike other games in the series, Double Dash gave us a new way to play the game. Unlike past and future installments, player now drive with two racers instead of one, one driving and the other using items. Speaking of items, each original duo of racers have their own special items, such as Mario and Luigi's Fireballs, Wario and Waluigi's Bob-ombs and Bowser and Bowser Jr.'s Bowser's Shell. The game comes with sixteen new tracks suitable for two people karts. Up to four player can play. The single player is a little dull since there is only Grand Prix and Time Trial modes. Grand Prix is where you race against seven other racers to win 1st place in a certain cup, either Mushroom, Flower, Star, or Special. There is also an unlockable All Cup Tour in which you must race in all sixteen courses. This appears in both single player and multi player. Next is Time Trial, which only appears in single player. The racer lonely races on a single track in order to beat his or her best time. The next mode is Battle mode, in which two to four players can play. There are three different battle modes, the first one being the classic Balloon Battle. Basically,each racer starts out with three balloons. What you must do is throw items and place traps to make opponents lose a balloon. The last racer standing with at least one balloon left is the winner. Next is Shine Thief, which players must battle for a Shine Sprite located on the battlefield. Attacking the racer holding the sprite causes them to lose it. The racer holding the sprite when the clock reaches zero is the winner. The last of the three is Bob-omb Blast, which I highly recommend.

Oh the excitement!

What you do is stock up on Bob-ombs and throw them at your friends. The racers who get caught in three explosions are taken out of the battle and the last duo standing is the winner.

Last, I would like to talk about Versus mode, which is where you race against your friends in any track you choose instead of a whole cup. It's not in single player mode so that's a small disappointment.

Graphics in Double Dash are very good in my opinion. The kart's and racer's appearances on the racetracks are well animated and have good designs. The tracks themselves are all well designed and are wonderful to see. One small thing I noticed being pointed out is that the characters on the character selection screen are a little shiny looking like toys or something. It honestly doesn't bug me, but it may bother some people. Overall, graphics are very good and pass.

Music in Double Dash is very good and catchy. Each piece of music fits its track, from fast paced for Luigi's Circuit, to creepy for Bowser's Castle, to deep and beautiful for Rainbow Road. All the songs are well done and pass. Sounds are well recorded and are rather cartoon-like. Racers scream for almost every occasion in the game, a lot if they are hit by shells, so that may get annoying for some.

Mario Kart Double Dash is a good game for anyone who is a fan of the Mario Kart series. From its different gameplay elements to its familiar fun, this is a must have. If you have a Gamecube laying around or even a Wii and a Gamecube controller and memory card, see if you can find a used copy of this game at a local game store. While I'm still up, I must mention that the controls are a little unpolished, so they require a little getting used to. Overall, Mario Kart Double Dash is a must have.



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