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Nintendo hopes to reel in fans with  Mario Kart 8  crossover DLC
Nintendo hopes to reel in fans with Mario Kart 8 crossover DLC
August 26, 2014 | By Christian Nutt

Today, Nintendo Europe put up a page advertising two DLC packs for Mario Kart 8, due in November 2014 and May 2015, which each bring 8 new tracks to the game as well as characters from The Legend of Zelda and Animal Crossing franchises, as well as karts and (apparently) a track from its F-Zero racing franchise.

DLC has long been a staple of a game's development strategy at other publishers, but Nintendo, as usual, has only done experiments here and there, in games like New Super Mario Bros. 2 and Mario Golf World Tour.

These Mario Kart 8 packs -- priced at 7.00 ($11.60 U.S.) suggest a more conservative and appealing approach to DLC. Each contains eight courses, four vehicles, and three characters. Players who buy both will additionally unlock Yoshi and Shyguy characters for play in the game.

The move may tie into statements made by president Satoru Iwata that Nintendo would better exploit its IPs and characters moving forward -- its only ongoing crossover franchise is Smash Bros., which has two installments (one for each of its platforms) due this year.

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Alex Kogan
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Interesting. I already wondered how they are going to embed amiibo into Mario Kart, because some characters were missing.
Would be nice if you get the character DLC for free if you bought the amiibo figure.

Chris Hendricks
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Despite Link not fitting in thematically with the Mario Kart franchise in any way, I'm feeling good about this. Nintendo's handling this right:

- test the DLC waters with content from another company (Mercedes), basically getting them to pay for it
- add content from other franchises, exciting the Nintendo fanbase
- provide another major platform for Amiibo (answering at least some of the question of why they'd be useful anywhere besides Smash Bros.)

It even gives a new source for retro tracks, as everything from the F-Zero series is now fair game to be added in (either in this game or a future Mario Kart instalment).

Joe Zachery
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The amount of content you get for the price is prefect! Nintendo knows how to handle DLC!

Bob Johnson
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wake me up when it is out. Sounds great, but way too early to announce it. the may 2015 date is ridiculous. A school year away.

Why not make a big splash with an announcement and release the same day!?!??

You'd get some big excitement. Now it's an annoying why bother me now with this info? I can't do anything with it.

Eric Geer
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Well there is one out in November 2014 and one in May 2015. So the announcement is mainly for the Nov 2014 DLC, while its a nice courtesy to players that there will be more early next year.

Bob Johnson
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Making it worse is there are already placeholders in the game for the extra content. I just think they are getting ahead of themselves.