MarioMario Kart

Do You Need Nintendo Online for Mario Kart?

As the Nintendo Switch continues to gain popularity, many new players are discovering the joy of Mario Kart for the first time. A common question among these newcomers is whether they need a Nintendo Switch Online subscription to play Mario Kart 8 Deluxe to its fullest.

This article will break down what the subscription offers in relation to the game, aiming to help both new and existing players decide if the service is right for them. Let’s take a closer look.

Do You Need Nintendo Online for Mario Kart?

If you want to play Mario Kart 8 Deluxe online multiplayer with friends or other players around the world, you will need a subscription to the Nintendo Switch Online service. This service provides online multiplayer functionality for many Nintendo Switch games, including Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

However, if you’re just playing local multiplayer or single-player modes, a Nintendo Switch Online subscription is not required. The subscription is solely for online multiplayer, cloud saves, and other online-specific features.

Playing Mario Kart 8 Deluxe: Online vs. Offline

Whether you’re playing online or offline, the game promises tons of fun, but there are distinct differences between the two modes.

Offline Play

  1. Single Player Modes: Players can engage in the traditional Grand Prix, battling AI-controlled racers across various cups and difficulty levels. Time Trials challenge players to set their best times, while VS Race lets them customize the race settings.
  2. Local Multiplayer: Up to 4 players can race on a single console using split-screen. Alternatively, using the local wireless connection, up to 8 players with their own consoles and game copies can compete without any internet connection.
  3. Battle Mode: This mode pits players against each other in specialized arenas, with games like Balloon Battle and Shine Thief. While it can be played online, offline play allows for couch co-op battles and friendly banter.

Online Play

  1. Worldwide & Regional Racing: Players can test their skills against racers from around the globe or focus on competitors from their region. This provides varied challenges as they encounter a myriad of playstyles and tactics.
  2. Online Multiplayer with Friends: By connecting with friends online, players can set up private rooms, choose tracks, and customize race settings to their liking. This mode provides the camaraderie of local multiplayer with the convenience of online connectivity.
  3. Tournaments: Online play offers the ability to participate in or even create custom tournaments. These can be set with specific rules and schedules, allowing players to compete for the top spot on the leaderboards.
  4. Voice Chat: Through the Nintendo Switch Online app on smartphones, players can communicate with friends during online matches, making strategic decisions or just sharing a laugh.
  5. Updates and DLC: Online connectivity also means that players have access to any updates, seasonal events, or downloadable content (DLC) that might be released for the game.

Benefits of a Nintendo Switch Online Subscription

Nintendo Switch Online (NSO) is the official online service for Nintendo’s popular gaming console, the Nintendo Switch. Subscribing to this service unlocks a multitude of features that enhance the gaming experience. Below are some of the notable benefits:

  1. Online Multiplayer Gaming: One of the primary attractions of NSO is the ability to play with friends and other players globally. Games like “Mario Kart 8 Deluxe,” “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate,” and “Splatoon 2” come alive when played online, offering competitive and cooperative gameplay experiences.
  2. NES & Super NES Classic Titles: Subscribers have access to a growing library of classic NES and Super NES games. From iconic titles like “Super Mario Bros.” and “The Legend of Zelda” to lesser-known gems, there’s something for every retro gaming fan.
  3. Cloud Save Data Backup: Worried about losing your game progress? With NSO, game save data is automatically backed up to the cloud. This ensures that even if something happens to your console, your progress isn’t lost.
  4. Exclusive Offers and Content: NSO members often receive exclusive offers not available to non-subscribers. This might include discounts on select titles, in-game bonuses, or early access to demos and betas.
  5. Voice Chat via Smartphone App: While the Nintendo Switch lacks native voice chat functionality, the dedicated NSO smartphone app provides a way for players to communicate during multiplayer sessions.
  6. Special Features for Specific Games: Some games have additional features only available to NSO members. For instance, “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” offers the ability to visit other players’ islands via the Dream Suite, a feature only available to subscribers.
  7. Tetris 99: An exclusive game for NSO members, “Tetris 99” pits you against 98 other players in a battle royale version of the classic puzzle game. It’s a fresh and competitive take on a beloved classic.

Alex Henderson

Alex Henderson, known to the online gaming community as "GameMaster", brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to the world of video games. With over 15 years of experience, Alex has worked as a game tester, programmer, and designer for several top gaming companies before deciding to share his insights and reviews with the gaming community. He specializes in RPGs and adventure games, but his love for gaming knows no genre boundaries. Alex's goal is to help gamers of all levels navigate the exciting and ever-evolving world of gaming.

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