In order to enjoy Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit with your friends, you have to love chaos. And I don’t mean the usual mess associated with the game on Nintendo, like the poorly timed blue snails or the nightmare of the rainbow highway. The clutter here is more materialistic, and you can find a lot of fun in it if you don’t mind scattered things, or the high cost.
The biggest problem with Home Circuit is that it can be difficult to play with more than one player, so you can’t do this once you buy the game that easily. In the game, players control vehicles using Nintendo switches, while driving down an actual obstacle course in the real world, but the price for playing them with friends is very high. Each player is required not only to own an actual cart, at $ 99.99, but also to have their own switch to control it. There is no other way, via the split screen or any other multiplayer solution.
However, if you can collect all the required equipment, the experience is much better with friends. Home Circuit works the same way as the original game. Create a car race track by placing four cardboard hurdles around your house that mark the race path. The game then enhances that realistic road with hurdles, visual effects and strengths you pick up during the race, transforming the living room into a piece of the beloved mushroom kingdom.
One of the strangest things you will experience while playing Home Circuit alone is the absence of the physical factor. While you have to deal with real and virtual obstacles at the same time – you can hit the coffee table and take a hit from the red shell, sometimes at the same moment – your competitors will not face the same challenge. Even if you bond with them, it will not make much difference, as you cannot drop them off the road.
But that changes when you play with another real car that you can crash into and push into obstacles in the real world. This quickly turns into a colossal mess. Imagine building an expensive racing track out of small colorful cubes with your family to learn the boundaries of the road, put everything carefully, then after one lap all this turns into ruin, and the pieces are scattered everywhere, the gates slide from their places, and your pets run in panic behind the cars.
But that made it so much more fun. Mario Kart has always been a game about chaos. Place two remote-controlled cars amid a pile of plastic and cardboard, and you’ll really know the mess. I can only imagine what would happen with three or four cars. Spectators have fun, too, because those not playing watch the little cars roam the race track, and help fix the track mid-race.
And having someone else play with you brings out the frivolous nature of remote-controlled cars in reality. While Mario Kart is focused on racing, Home Circuit has a free roam mode where you can drive around the house without a goal. Some children turned this game into a hide and seek, and used the cameras in the car to find the hiding around the house.
It is no surprise that Home Circuit is better in sharing with others. This is how most games are, and this is the case for Mario Kart in particular. But this makes the difficulty of sharing it stand out more and more, because you feel that you are missing an essential part of the experience if you play it alone. It’s hard to ask a family to own multiple switches and spend $ 99 on each car for some afternoon fun. It cannot be said that it is worth all the costs, for its great pleasure.
- This topic is translated from the site The Verge.