I just played the first 'Mario Kart' game for smartphones, and it's a lot of fun - but there's one major aspect of the game that frustrated me
- The first-ever "Mario Kart" game is headed to smartphones this summer - it's called "Mario Kart Tour," and it's free-to-play.
- The game isn't available just yet, but an early version is available to a select group of people on Android devices.
- After playing the game on Wednesday morning, I have mostly positive things to say about Nintendo's next major smartphone game.
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For the first time ever, "Mario Kart" is headed to smartphones. The game is scheduled to arrive at some point this summer.
And for some people, it's already here - "Mario Kart Tour" entered a period of limited testing on Android phones this week. I was one of those lucky people who got into the early test period, and I've spent the last 24 hours playing the game in bursts.
Here's what it's like:
One caveat up front: As this is a closed beta test, we're not allowed to share images or video from "Mario Kart Tour." All the images in this piece are from other "Mario Kart" games.
So, what is "Mario Kart Tour"? It's very similar to the "Mario Kart" games you already know and love, but adapted to smartphones.
The racing itself is fun, and many of the hooks from the most recent "Mario Kart" games are there.
"Mario Kart Tour" is a free game, which is good and bad.
That last one is particularly unfortunate: A timer starts from the moment you open "Mario Kart Tour," and as time goes forward you lose "hearts." It's one of several different virtual currencies within the game that gave me pause.
"Mario Kart Tour" isn't finished, and it doesn't even have a release date just yet, so I'll reserve judgment until the game's official launch. As it stands, the game is fun and worth playing — with some major caveats.
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