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Review: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – Booster Course Pass (wave 6)

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has been the gift that’s kept on giving over the past 18 months. The Booster Course Pass was a welcome surprise when it was first announced; now, at the end of the road, we’re playing the sixth and final wave of DLC goodness.

As with previous waves, this pack features eight tracks taken from a variety of Mario Kart titles. This time around, there are three Wii and three Tour entries, with some older tracks sprinkled in for good measure. In particular, it’s refreshing to find the SNES and GameCube in the mix, with some classic entries that feel right at home. 

The Acorn and Spiny Cups now join the ranks. The Spiny Cup feels like a fitting end to proceedings, labeled with a blue shell that reminds us that, in Mario Kart, no one is ever truly safe.

Without further ado, let’s break down each of the latest DLC for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. 

Acorn Cup

Rome Avanti (Mario Kart Tour)

This glorious track begins with a pass through the famous Colosseum itself. As you dash up the stairs, you’ll notice a giant full moon; when it hits your eye like a big pizza pie – That’s Amore! The rest of the circuit features other Roman inspirations, from fountains to cobblestone streets; it’s a fast and fun journey through one of the oldest and most famous cities in the world, creating a brilliant introduction to this cup.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Rome Avanti

DK Mountain (Mario Kart Double Dash)

Ah, now this is a classic. Many players have a soft spot for the GameCube’s take on the Mario Kart series. We’ve only had a few tracks make their way into the Booster Course Pass, making this a welcome entry. DK Mountain begins with a quick uphill journey followed by a rocket boost toward a grumpy-looking volcano. Then it’s time to dash down the mountainside, full of twists as you avoid tumbling boulders (of course). The best touch? Right at the end, you’ll have to make your way across a rickety bridge made of wooden planks. This narrow path is a great place to leave a banana peel. 

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - DK Mountain

Daisy Circuit (Mario Kart Wii)

Daisy Circuit looks fantastic. Many racers will recognise it from the popular Wii outing, but anything featuring Daisy is an instant hit with this racer. The orange hues show off a low sun, giving off a lovely golden glow. The iconic statue of Luigi and Daisy is a real treat against this gorgeous backdrop. The track takes us through windy streets, a twisty tunnel, and a paved area with two sections; my personal challenge is to try staying on the higher narrow part as long as possible while zipping along.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Daisy Circuit

Piranha Plant Cove (Mario Kart Tour)

Is this a new track? Kinda. It’s actually an amalgamation of several tracks previously featured in Mario Kart Tour. It certainly feels new, with a deep-sea race full of eels and seashells. This simple-yet-fun journey through the water is complemented by a colorful backdrop that leaps off the screen.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Piranha Plant Cove

Spiny Cup

Madrid Drive (Mario Kart Tour)

Tour tracks are among my favorite because they bridge that gap between reality and fantasy – our world and the Mushroom Kingdom. The developers have done a marvelous job converting real-world locations into Mario-centric outings, and Madrid stands out for a few reasons. On the surface, it’s another race through city streets, though if you listen closely, you’ll hear a Spanish theme to the background music. It adds to the fast pace and fits in beautifully. Additionally, the end of the circuit takes us onto a soccer pitch (or football, if you prefer), complete with giant soccer balls and Goombas hopping about in those adorable Goomba’s Shoes. It creates a special ending to another lovely entry.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Piranha Plant Cove

Rosalina’s Ice World (Mario Kart 7)

Ice-themed tracks always look splendid, and this one is no different. This snowy circuit features caves and caverns, with alternate pathways to keep you on your toes. It’s also fitting as winter draws closer in real life (at least, in the Northern Hemisphere). For us southerners, we’ll have to live vicariously!

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Rosalina's Ice World

Bowser’s Castle 3 (Super Mario Kart)

For me, this is the highlight of Wave 6. I’ve been yearning for more Bowser Castle entries for some time, and this one does not disappoint. It’s starkly different from the SNES original, but it looks terrific, with updated graphics providing more depth. The thumping soundtrack helps to place you in this fiery setting, with visual cues like lavafalls (waterfalls made of lava) to further set the scene. Watch for the alternate pathway atop the walls towards the end!

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Bowser's Castle 3

Rainbow Road (Mario Kart Wii)

It has to end like this. Rainbow Road has been the traditional final track in Mario Kart ever since the series began way back in 1992. This classic Wii outing will be familiar to fans, taking us back into space with colorful roads that have no boundaries. I enjoy the thrill of drifting close to the edge, knowing that an imprecise movement could send me flying into the ether. Lakitu will rescue me, of course, but nothing gets the heart pounding quite like Rainbow Road. This one features plenty of ramps, holes to avoid, and some lovely Mario Galaxy-esque star jump points. It’s fast, it’s fun, and it’s a heck of an adrenaline rush.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Booster Course Pass (wave 6) - Rainbow Road

Overall thoughts

It’s bittersweet to welcome this final wave of DLC. On the one hand, we’re saying farewell to 18 months’ worth of content. On the other hand, we’re welcoming eight fresh tracks into the fold, completing the set and helping cement Mario Kart 8 Deluxe as the biggest in the series. 

With circuits spanning new and old entries in the series, Wave 6 marks a well-balanced end to the Booster Course Pass. From humble beginnings on the SNES to the most recent Tour courses, this collection feels like the perfect combination.

If you’ve been sitting on the fence, there’s no better time to jump on board. The Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Booster Course Pass can be purchased for a one-off payment of $24.99. With six waves now available, you’ll be treated to 48 additional tracks. Plus, if you happen to be a Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack subscriber, these courses are included at no extra cost.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has been the gift that’s kept on giving. Who knows what the future holds for the franchise? You can hear some of our speculations in our weekly podcast, but, for now, this is the perfect send off for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

Check out our reviews of each of the DLC for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe:


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