The first wave of the Booster Course Pass for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe was released what feels like decades ago at this point, and after an excruciating amount of radio silence from Nintendo, we finally have eight new tracks to romp around in Wave 2 – launching yesterday, 4th August 2022.
The Turnip and Propeller cups have arrived, with a selection of fan-favourite tracks returning from games past. Notable examples include Mario Circuit 3 from Super Mario Kart, Kalimari Desert from Mario Kart 64, Mushroom Gorge from Mario Kart Wii, and Waluigi Pinball from Mario Kart DS.
That last example is about as fan-favourite as fan-favourite gets, and its inclusion in the second wave represents a positive change in this release, and that is the quality of this particular remake.
Two tracks from Mario Kart Tour still look like mobile assets ported to the Switch (something most, if not all of the tracks in Wave 1 suffered from), but Waluigi Pinball has matched the bar set by the base Mario Kart 8 Deluxe graphical standards.
It’s a positive spin on what was a visually underwhelming first wave, and while not every track in this release match that quality, the fact Waluigi Pinball was given that treatment shows Nintendo looked to be paying attention to the mild disappointment from fans after Wave 1’s release.
Mario Kart Tour continues to have a hold over the Booster Course Pass, as many of these ported tracks are from the mobile game with some mild sprucing up.
The N64’s Kalimari Desert inclusion involves the altered lap through the train tunnel, first featured in Tour, as well as Mushroom Gorge from Wii including the blue parafoil mushroom in the cave section (first introduced in the Mario Kart 7 version of Mushroom Gorge).
Finally, an original track has been added in the form of Sky-High Sundae (a first for the Booster Course Pass), an over-the-top, vibrant romp through a giant freezer box and across a bewildering mess of enlarged sweet treats. Think Sweet Sweet Canyon, and then some.
The wait for these eight new tracks was excruciating, but, thankfully, it has been worth it. Further injecting genuine longevity into the best-selling racing game of all time.
Online lobbies look to be jumping on Waluigi Pinball in swathes if it appears in the voting shortlist (understandably), and soon our attention will turn to what comes next in Wave 3, and the theorising as to when it will release begins right about now.
Which tracks would you like to see next in the Booster Course Pass? Let us know in the comments!