Mario Kart 8 is a 2014 kart racing game and the eighth major installment in the Mario Kart series, developed and published by Nintendo for the Wii U. Players control characters from the Mario franchise and participate in kart racing on various race tracks, using a variety of items to hinder opponents or gain advantages in the race. The game features single-player and multiplayer game modes, including online via the Nintendo Network. The game was a critical and commercial success upon release and is the best-selling game on the Wii U. The game continued to receive post-release patches, DLC, and Amiibo support.
The game continues the traditional gameplay of the Mario Kart series. Returning features from previous installments include motorbikes and twelve-player racing from Mario Kart Wii, as well as hang gliders, underwater racing, and vehicle customization from Mario Kart 7. New features include anti-gravity racing, in which certain parts of a track can allow racers to drive on walls and ceilings. The game features 32 tracks in eight cups (Mushroom, Flower, Star, Special, Shell, Banana, Leaf, and Lightning), with an additional 16 later released as DLC in four additional cups: Egg, Triforce, Crossing, and Bell.
An enhanced port for the Nintendo Switch, titled Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, was released worldwide in April 2017. It is both a critical and commercial success, selling over sixteen million copies worldwide by March 2019, ranking it the system's best-selling game.
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