Mario Kart, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Mario, Luigi,

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is still immensely popular. Thanks to the many DLC’s the game keeps being entertaining despite being almost 6 years old. Nintendo recently announced the 4th wave of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Booster Course Pass to be released in Spring of 2023. The announcement of this new release is the perfect time to refine your driving skills to set the fastest times in the game. Here are 10 tips on how to become the best Mario Kart 8 Deluxe player.

Choose the right character and vehicle

With 42 characters and an almost endless list of kart configurations, choosing the ‘perfect configuration’ is hard. But having the right type of player-kart combination for a specific track and engine class will make a big difference. This is the best combination-guide to find some of the fastest configurations for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

Start your race with a ‘Rocket Start’

This is the first tip found in the “Driving Techniques” of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. To launch from the starting grid with a Rocket Start, you should press and hold the A-button the moment you see the number “2” appear during countdown. Timing is very crucial, press and hold the button way to early and your engine will stall and you will lose some precious time.

Become a pro in drifting

Drifting is one of the fundamentals for getting better times in Mario Kart. Most people have the technique to do basic drifting, but to become the fastest you need to master advanced drifting techniques. Drifting will not only make you faster in turns but it will also build up a speed boost. Bayesic released an extensive video on how to drift like a pro that captures all the techniques.

Everything You Need to Know About Drifting in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Jump for joy… euhm, boost

Press the R-button just before jumping off the ramp to perform a trick in mid-air. If you successfully execute the trick, you will receive a brief speed boost. There are many different objects on the course that provide you with an opportunity to initiate these stunts. Next to every ramp or ledge you can also use tree roots, fallen pillars, …

Find the shortcuts

Most of the tracks have shortcuts, these can help you overtake your opponents or shave off a few seconds on your lap time in a time trial. Take a tour of the map in single player to find these shortcuts. Many of these will pass through rough terrain, so make sure you have a speed-boost before taking a shortcut.

Make clever use of power-ups

Power-ups can make or break your race. There are many different power ups each with there own unique power. Here’s a short list of tips on how to make better use of different power-ups.

  • Shoot projectile weapons to your enemies while they are in the air above the abyss. If it takes them out in mid flight they’ll suffer a bigger loss of time. Lakitu will respawn them and the player will suffer a much longer animation.
  • Save those “Super Horn” power ups for clever use. We all know how hateful it is to be hit by a Spiny Shell (and losing 1st place due to a Spiny Shell). The Super Horn has the ability to send nearby vehicles and items flying including the Spiny Shell, keeping us safe from every offence item in the game.
  • Use Offence-items for your defence; holding or dropping bananas or holding or shooting shells backwards can block attacks that come from behind you.

Make sure to check the nintendolife-article to get to know the full list of items and how to use them.

Save up on Coins

You probably already know you can save up coins in a race. You can either collect them by driving over them in a race or you can collect them as an item. Each coin you collect will boost your overall speed until you reach the 10 coins. You will also get a very tiny temporary speed boost after collecting a coin, even after reaching the 10-coin limit. Next to this they will also help you unlock karts and parts.

Make use of the Spin Turbo in antigravity zones

There are multiple antigravity zones on the different maps in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. Colliding with an opponent in these antigravity zones will give you both a speed boost. You can also collide against neon-blue-tinged objects giving you a speed boost.

Make use of other players’ slipstream

Just like in real-life racing you can use slipstream to gain speed. If you trail behind another racer for a certain period, your vehicle will receiver a speed boost similar to a mini turbo. Blue lines will visually appear around your character to visualize that you’re slipstreaming.

Keep practicing

Just like with anything, the more time you put in to doing something, the better you get. Do some research on how to set better times and try it out on the track. You can also download a high-performing player ghost in Time Trial. Use this technique to check out what character and kart the player used and see how (s)he’s driving around the track. You can select View Ghost to see their shortcuts and techniques in action.

Using these ten tips in your gameplay should make you a better Mario Kart 8 Deluxe player. Don’t forget to enjoy the game while you’re playing, not everything has to be a competition. Also let me know in the comments who your favorite MK8 Deluxe character is!

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