Mario Kart: Double Dash!! Is The Best Mario Kart, Right? Let’s Find Out


Image: Nintendo Life / Zion Grassl

We do not declare to at all times be appropriate right here at Nintendo Life, however we definitely will struggle simply as arduous to defend our horrible opinions as we do the nice ones. Today, due to the current re-release of outdated Mario Kart tracks within the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Booster Course Pass, we’re pondering again to Mario Karts of outdated… and meaning discussing our emotions on Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, the surprisingly strategic double-driver kart racer that flipped the Mario Kart method on its head approach earlier than Mario Kart 8’s gravity gimmick. Spoiler alert: We find it irresistible. Mostly.

Is {that a} good opinion, or a foul one? We’ll by no means inform.

We will, nonetheless, let you know our detailed ideas on why we love Double Dash a lot, nearly 20 years after its preliminary launch. It might not have the sharpest graphics, or the widest vary of playable characters, or an enormous collection of programs (however why would you want something apart from Baby Park, actually?) however it nonetheless stands as a fairly sensible entry into the Mario Kart collection that wasn’t afraid to shake issues up.

So, get your engines revving, as a result of it is time to wave the massive flag that makes races begin. Heeere we go!

Kate Gray, Staff Writer (Baby Mario/Baby Luigi)

Mario Kart: Double Dash!! is maybe the one time {that a} Mario Kart game has had an additional layer of technique, with the addition of double drivers. There’s loads of technique within the video games already, in fact — between the racing, the shortcuts, and the objects (and when to make use of them!) the video games are mainly a three-lap aggressive puzzle.

Double Dash’s drivers will be converted at any time, and so they also can maintain objects, which implies which you could primarily financial institution an merchandise for later. There’s additionally the additional strategic possibility of selecting two drivers from the identical “team” — Baby Mario and Baby Luigi, for instance — to unlock an additional non-compulsory merchandise that is distinctive to every workforce. The Babies Mario, for instance, have entry to a Chain Chomp, which might catapult you into the lead whereas additionally chompin’ on all of your foes.

Which brings me to the opposite purpose I really like Double Dash (apart from Baby Park, the GOAT monitor): More than every other Mario Kart game, it is easy to claw again victory after being unceremoniously shunted to the again of the pack with a well-timed banana-lightning combo. Several of the objects, particularly the distinctive workforce objects, are designed to push you forwards by a number of locations, or at the least to severely injury the possibilities of the opposite drivers. Or each.

This dynamic rubber-banding implies that 1st Place by no means feels locked down, prefer it does typically in Mario Kart 8 — anybody, at any time, can out of the blue find yourself forward of the remaining, solely to drop again all the way down to eighth due to an unlucky late-lap mishap. It’s tense proper up till the top of every race, which is one thing I can not actually say about MK8, the place I’ll typically be in 1st for practically 3 laps with out a lot problem. Is {that a} brag? You bloody wager it’s. (*Toad voice*) I’m the very best.

Ollie Reynolds, Staff Writer (Bowser/Bowser Jr)

Nearly 20 years after its launch, Mario Kart: Double Dash!! continues to be most likely the largest shake-up the franchise has ever seen. Mario Kart Wii launched movement controls and introduced the surprisingly intuitive Wii Wheel into the limelight, however as somebody who as soon as labored in video game retail, you may wager I’ve seen some fairly grubby Wii Wheels in my time – so I may do with out them.

Meanwhile, Mario Kart 8 has its enjoyable anti-grav options, however truthfully, past the pace boosts you could possibly get by slamming into different gamers, it did not actually add something distinctive to the general gameplay. Double Dash, nonetheless, launched an extremely distinctive, strategic aspect with its two-person karts, permitting you a degree of management over merchandise utilization that hasn’t been matched since.

On a extra private be aware, nonetheless, Double Dash accommodates a few of my favorite parts from your entire collection. The mixture of Bowser and Bowser Jr nets you an superior spiked inexperienced shell which, for those who’re lagging behind the remainder of the racers, will wipe out a number of in a single go for those who’re correct sufficient. Not solely that, however the game consists of one in every of my all time favorite tracks with Waluigi Stadium, a course teeming with obstacles and ramps that I’ve replayed extra instances than I’d care to confess (Nintendo, you want to carry this one to the Booster Course Pass!).

Double Dash had its justifiable share of naysayers upon launch; its considerably awkward drifting mechanic took a little bit of getting used to and a number of the programs really feel a tad simplistic by at present’s requirements, however for me, it was the primary Mario Kart that I correctly received into and can stay a agency favorite. Am I blinded by nostalgia? Maybe. But I’m additionally proper.

Gavin Lane, editor (DK/not-DK)

When it involves the ‘greatest’ Mario Kart, I’m of the opinion that it is invariably the one you’ve got performed most with three buddies and maybe a couple of frosty drinks. In that situation, it is powerful to go flawed with any of them, and for me it was Double Dash at college.

I adored MK64 (my first Mario Kart), however the combination of unimaginable new programs and fully-3D characters in Double Dash actually made an impression. DK Mountain and Baby Park stick in my thoughts as traditional tracks: the previous remembered for the race to the barrel, the lovable buck-toothed volcano, and that perilous shortcut earlier than the ultimate bridge (to not point out the unimaginable viral video this monitor produced — see under); the latter for its frenzied item-heavy mania.

Simply switching characters and objects was a pleasure which actually made this entry really feel deeper than the others. Tapping ‘Z’ to vary driver and watch them hop between seats actually made the improve from MK64’s 2D sprites tangible. Slide right into a nook, drop a trailing banana pores and skin to foil somebody in your tail, change characters, activate your saved Starman and increase out of the drift, ploughing via a carefully-laid lure and into some poor soul who was about to cross the road — what a sense! It upped the technique in an extremely satisfying approach that I’ve by no means skilled in any of the opposite entries.

Double Dash may nonetheless be unfair (once more, see under), however it gave you a preventing likelihood to outwit your opponents for those who have been canny via its namesake gimmick.

Alana Hagues, Staff Writer (Toad/Toadette)

Toadsworth

I spent a ridiculous quantity of hours on Double Dash as a child. Really, the GameCube on the entire is the console the place I shaped lots of my most-formative gaming reminiscences, and I cherish that period deeply. And actually, my love for Double Dash has simply bloomed over time.

Double Dash feels just like the final Mario Kart to have a extremely distinctive gimmick. Sure, anti-gravity is enjoyable and permits for artistic course design, and issues like Mirror Mode, customisable autos, and paragliders have all been seen in each game since their inclusion. So why oh why received’t Nintendo carry again having two racers!? You may do your normal versus races with a good friend or three, however why not workforce up with one in every of your buddies and have them sit on the again and throw objects for you? When somebody is controlling the again character, they will additionally swipe at one other kart in the event that they’re shut sufficient and steal their merchandise. Brutal!

I at all times picked Toad and Toadette, who made her debut on this very game! The mushroom-headed duo have been a fairly noisy pair, which at all times used to harass my pals, particularly at any time when I received their signature merchandise the Golden Dash Mushroom. This gilded fungus provides you infinite pace boosts for a set time frame, so these sneaky blue shells that pushed me 4 locations down the ranks felt like nothing.

I nonetheless have my unique copy of Double Dash and a launch-day GameCube, so I booted it up after enjoying via the Booster Course Pass – and geez, am I tough! My outdated save file from 2008 (how is that 14 years in the past?) has each single mode absolutely accomplished, with King Boo and Petey Piranha in addition, and regardless of being twice as outdated, I may solely handle one first place in 150cc within the 12 programs I replayed. Phew. Good factor it wasn’t a LAN occasion, however I didn’t love getting whooped by NPCs for a couple of hours. This is what Mario Kart Wii’s bikes have achieved to me.

If you continue to want convincing that Double Dash is the very best Mario Kart game, I imply, c’mon, it has DK Mountain, Dino Dino Jungle, Baby Park, and the very best Bowser Castle within the collection?

Tom Whitehead, Deputy Editor (erm, see under)

Double Dash
Image: Nintendo

I used to be requested to contribute to this as a result of I’m unusual and did not have a GameCube. No, actually, and I nonetheless do not, I missed that total technology of consoles (PS2 and OG Xbox too) and performed just about completely on a creaky PC again within the day. It’s simply the way it was.

For me, then, Double Dash!! has at all times appeared like an oddity, having solely performed it briefly at some get-togethers a few years in the past. I’ve needed to ask others to elucidate the entire level of getting two characters within the kart; it sounds cool from a single participant perspective, to be honest, with strategic choices including to the racing thrills. In Co-Op although? As the youthful brother I really feel like I’d completely be within the again throwing objects, which has zero attraction to me.

My expertise with the collection has been with its Nintendo 64, Wii, 3DS, Wii U and Switch entries, then, by which I’ve devoted a whole lot (really 1000’s) of hours. In these video games Mario Kart is not only a jolly time, it is a brutal ‘solely the robust survive’ battle. Play a little bit of MK8 Deluxe on-line these days and it is a humbling, bruising expertise that nonetheless retains me coming again. Part of what I really like is the straightforward method at play – it is simply you, your car of selection, and no matter objects the RNG Mario Kart gods provide you with. It’s fundamental and traditional, with anti-grav and all that jazz actually simply making the tracks extra thrilling. The core gameplay loop, and the way objects are used, has been unchanged for me over a long time.

I’m positive Double Dash!! is superior, however possibly there is a purpose Nintendo solely went with that method as soon as and hasn’t returned. Sometimes completely tuned simplicity is healthier.


We’re not all in settlement about whether or not or not Double Dash!! was a fantastic spin on a longtime collection, however there’s at the least one factor we will all agree on: Mario Kart guidelines. Whether or not we’re all aligned on which one guidelines most is unimportant, so long as we will maintain enjoying collectively!

But now could be your time to voice your opinion, and we anticipate it to get spicy within the feedback, too — so tell us your ideas on whether or not or not Double Dash!! was a triumph or a misstep within the ballot under!


Here’s some extra mild Mario Kart studying for you, as effectively:





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