I’m going to start with a personal anecdote. A few months ago, I got my ass handed to me at Mario Kart 64 by an 8-year-old and a 10-year-old. Mario Kart 64 was released in 1996. I’ve been playing it since 1997. I have been playing that game for as long as they have been alive combined and they still beat me. Mario Kart is the great equaliser.
It doesn’t matter how amazing you are at the game, it’s chaotic and random enough that you can never truly know how things are going to play out (surprise blue shell at the end, anyone?). The franchise has managed to master making games that are quick to play, super easy to pick up, and still fun even when you have one asshole friend who is way, way too good at the game.
Now, with Mario Kart 8, we have the game at its shiniest, biggest and most frenetic – seriously, the 200cc mode is so fast it’ll make your eyes bleed. In addition to that, if you’re the kind of person that has 7 friends who also have a Nintendo Switch, you can play 8-player races with your mates over wifi. If you’re not that sort of person, you can do the next best thing: play 8-player races with some strangers over wi-fi at the pub.
Brisbane bar / arcade / barcade Netherworld is hosting a big ol’ Mario Kart party that will allow you to both infuriate strangers with strategically placed bananas in a variety of different Mario Kart 8 cups and to relive your Mario Kart glory days on a host of older consoles.
If you haven’t got a Switch or just want to bathe in nostalgia for a bit, Netherworld will have a host of the older incarnations of Mario Kart, including on Game Cube, 64 and SNES, that you can enjoy while furiously trying to remember where the shortcuts are in Koopa Troopa Beach.
It all kicks off at midday on June 4th and entry is free (you still have to pay for drinks though, that’s how bars work). Keep in mind that because the bar is, in fact, a bar, if you’re under 18, you will need a parent or guardian there to stop you from fucking shit up.
Netherworld is located at 186 Brunswick Street in the Valley, just on the corner of St Pauls Terrace. Details can be found right here.