Friday, June 20, 2008

The Best and Worst Levels of: Mario Kart Wii

Some games have memorable levels or stages that defines the game. They're the ones you really remember when you look back on the game or series of games. Then there's the levels that make you want to slap the developer in the face. Utterly repulsive, these stages need to be approached with extreme caution, for they wield an unusual amount of displeasure.

Today I'll be discussing the good and bad Mario Kart Wii racetracks. The game boast's an unusual amount of fun tracks (the most in any Mario Kart for me). For a full review of the game, the link is here. There are more good than bad, so I've posted 7 of my favorite tracks and 4 of my least favorites. Enjoy!

The Good - These raceways are what made the game enjoyable and memorable...

Coconut Mall
This track was one of the few of them that Wii owners first heard of. It was praised for it's originality and it's charm. And boy does it live up to it. Everything about it is cool, from the escalators that give you an advantage/disadvantage, Mii's on various posters and vehicles throughout the course, and the different shortcuts through stores and balconies.

DK Summit
A cool and unique track that focuses on the newest aspect to the game: tricks. It had various points in the level where you had to go up a ramp and pull a trick to get around some sort of obstacles. Just like the Shy Guys on snowboards that populate the track, this slope screams the word "Awesome".

DS Delfino Square
Probably my favorite track on the DS, and it returns on the Wii. Really not to much to say about this one other than it's a pretty sweet track. The weaving in and out of buildings and various shortcuts added onto the fact that it's short but not too short, you then have a stellar level named Delfino Square.

Koopa Cape
This track was one of my favorites from the start and stands true now. I just like the style of the track and the calming waters and sand. And at the end there's a cool pipe that you enter classic Super Mario style and winds you up in a tunnel made of glass. Nice level? Definitely. Short and boring? Definitely not.

Maple Treeway
I'm pretty sure this is based on a galaxy from Super Mario Galaxy, but I could be wrong. Nonetheless, it is a very fun ride. As the name suggests, you are pretty much traveling along the branches and tops of maple trees, driving through piles of leaves and avoiding giant caterpillar enemies.

Moonview Highway
Every Mario Kart to date (excluding the SNES and GBA versions) has had a track that takes place on a busy highway/public road. The one I remember most is the N64 one, but alas that is not in MKWii, and so my second favorite is Moonview Highway. Taking place during the night, this one seemed to have upped the difficulty from previous versions. It had suicidal Bom-ombs on wheels that made it even more dangerous to travel the streets.

N64 Bowser's Castle
As with Moonview Highway and it's predessors, a Bowser Castle has appeared in every Mario Kart. They are notorious for sharp, 90° turns, Thwomps, and the danger of falling in lava. Probably the best of these tracks is the one from the N64, and it has been brought back in Mario Kart Wii.

The Bad - ...While these left a sour taste in my mouth.

Mushroom Gorge
This too was praised by gaming journalists from the start as being unique and fun. I may be with the minority in this, but this track sucked! While the whole bouncing mushrooms seems cool at first, the course was short and it's easy to miscalculate you're angle and fall into the darkness at the bottom.

GBA Shy Guy Beach
I don't even know why Nintendo included this one, it's not fun. A bland style, annoying mortar shells, and water that slows you are all features of this horrible racecourse. And what particularly bugs me is when people choose this in online matches. You can tell they only choose it to piss other people off (I think...).

GCN Waluigi Stadium
Probably the best of these four worst, Waluigi Stadium still bores me. While it has jumps around every corner, the basic feel of it really doesn't keep me playing.

SNES Mario Circuit 3
Another one that has a bleak style. You could argue that it's because it was from the Super Nintendo but it's still that way. Plus, the overall shortness of the track diminishes the fun too.

Worthy of Mention - Just that: worth being mentioned.

The Luigi/Mario/Daisy Circuits
Wario's Gold Mine
Dry Dry Ruins
Bowser's Castle
Rainbow Road

So what did you think? Did I miss any good tracks? Remind me in the comments.


  1. GBA Shy Guy Beach is the shittest thing to ever come into existance.

  2. I believe Mario Circuit was one of the best because it was fast paced, and mushroom gorge was one of the best designed and most fun to play. Just because you suck at something doesn't mean it sucks. Rainbow road was amazing though, and N64 Bowser's castle.

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