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Mario Kart 9: What to expect from Nintendo’s next racer

It doesn’t seem likely that Mario Kart 9 will launch anytime soon, as Nintendo has just announced a Booster Course Pass expansion for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which will see players gain 48 extra remastered courses.

The expansion will cost £22.49/$24.99, and will gradually release the remastered courses up until the end of 2023. That means it’s unlikely that Mario Kart 9 will arrive in the next few years.

But that hasn’t stopped the rumour mill suggesting that Mario Kart 9 is in the works.

Nintendo leaker @LeakyPandy claims the next entry in the series will be called Mario Kart Crossroads, and will include playable characters from Nintendo games outside of the Mario universe. These apparently include Advance Wars, Animal Crossing, Arms, F-Zero, Kid Icarus, Splatoon and The Legend of Zelda.

This wouldn’t be a huge surprise, as Nintendo has already added Link and the Inklings to the roster in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. It would make a lot of sense for Nintendo to expand this idea and follow the same route as the Smash Bros. series.

The leaker also claims there will be new items and race courses from these additional Nintendo properties, opening up a mountain of new possibilities for the series.

Nintendo could potentially shake up other core gameplay elements too, with @LeakyPandy suggesting players will only have one item slot, while coins will be removed from the game.

Of course, Nintendo hasn’t confirmed any of these details just yet, so it’s worth taking everything with a pinch of salt. But if you want to check out more rumours for Mario Kart 9, keep reading on.

Release date

Now Nintendo has confirmed it will be launching additional content for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe up until the end of 2023, it seems highly unlikely that Mario Kart 9 will be released in the next few years.

Reports suggest that Mario Kart 9 is in active development, but it’s now more likely to be released on the Switch 2 (or whatever Nintendo decides to name the successor to its hybrid console).

Gameplay and leak

There has been no official information about the Mario Kart 9 gameplay just yet, so everything we know so far is based on rumour and speculation.

Renowned leaker @LeakyPandy claims that Mario Kart 9 will be a huge turning point for the series, as it could include multiple Nintendo IPs outside of the Mushroom Kingdom. That means the likes of Animal Crossing, F-Zero, Splatoon and The Legend of Zelda could all be involved, with their respective characters joining the roster, as well as new items and level designs.

If accurate, Mario Kart would essentially be copying the Smash Bros. format, opening up the number of possibilities to the series rather than just using assets from the Super Mario universe.

Mario Kart 9 is rumoured to feature Zelda and Splatoon.

The leak also claims Mario Kart 9 will be ditching coins and limiting players to one item slot. There will apparently be both small and big item boxes this time round, with the former featuring the likes of single shells and mushrooms, while the latter will offer multiple shells and stars.

Of course, this information is provided by one source on Twitter, so it isn’t exactly reliable. But it does sound plausible, allowing Nintendo to make use of a wider span of content to keep the game active for as long as possible. Nintendo has found a lot of success with Smash Bros. Ultimate, so a similar tactic would make a lot of sense.

For more news and updates on Mario Kart 9, make sure to keep this page bookmarked.

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