News Article

Mario Kart 8 Drifting In For a May Release

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Aiming for top gear

Satoru Iwata has completed his investor briefing presentation, and one detail that's thankfully beyond the dangers of translation errors is that Mario Kart 8 is set to arrive in May — that window is for the worldwide market.

The importance of the release for Wii U is self-evident, as just today both Mario Kart 7 and — incredibly — Mario Kart Wii have passed one million sales between 1st April and 31st December 2013, adding to their sizeable lifetime figures. Just minutes before Iwata-san's presentation the latest Nintendo release list had the kart-racer down for "Spring", before the Nintendo President opted to confirm May as the month for a worldwide roll-out.

Are you happy to wait until May, or were you hoping to turbo-boost off the grid sooner?


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User Comments (115)



gamr4life said:

I was hoping for a march/april release date, buy may works too. I can get it for my sisters birthday, so actualy perfect timing!



Shirma_Akayaku said:

You gotta delete those automated re-posts. Nintendo Life is experiencing some hiccups right now.
EDIT: Ah, never mind. It's fine now.



NintyMan said:

I was hoping for April or even late March, but I'm fine with May. It will provide great entertainment for after college is over and it's still Spring. The relative lack of new information until now is probably why it's coming later.



Yoshis_VGM said:

NOOOOO!!! Sorry I was really hoping for an April release because my birthday is in April...



rjejr said:

May. Smack dab in the middle of Q2 just like they said. Ye-ha. (serous, not my usual unadulterated sarcasm)

Guess there's really no need for a January Nintendo Direct now, that's pretty much all I wanted to know.

Hey TW, thanks for pulling the all-nighter. 3AM can't be very convenient for you to try and translate Japanese.



AdanVC said:

The box art was revealed as well and it looks AMAZING, even better than the Super Mario 3D World cover IMO! It was posted on the meeting schedule on the Nintendo Japan website in a very low resolution tough, hope it becomes available in high-res soon.



Chomposaur said:

Is nobody picking up that the Wii u has a possible 3 month drought from Feb-may? Can anybody confirm any 1st party and 3rd party games in these 3 months ?



rjejr said:

MK Wii sales were probably helped a tiny bit by being included in the Wii Mini for $99 in the US. I'm sure they counted those and probably sold a couple of hundred.

Just realized DKCTF comes out the Friday my kids week off and MK8 comes out a month after spring break. It's like Nintendo doesn't want my kids to play video games during their school vacations. Good for me as a parent, not so much for them.



Gold said:

@JogurtTheYogurt I did. NeoGAF did too. N64/Genesis on Wii U VC hopefully. Also for the 3DS, Yoshi's New Island, Bravely Default, and Disney Magic Castle thingy majigger.

Also, over a year of "Please Understand."



rjejr said:

@JogurtTheYogurt - April 8 is Lego Hobbit - it's coming out on 8 systems on the same day - PS3, PS4, Vita, X360, X1, Wii U, 3DS, and PC. No love for Wii Mini.

Lego The Movie the Videogame comes out on Feb. 7.

I know these aren't the games you were looking for, but you included 3rd party.

I'm still holding out hope for Bayonetta 2 in March. No reason though, just a long time belief. It's gotta come out eventually.

If it makes you feel any better I think PS4 (inFamous 2nd Son) and X1 are suffering as well. Its winter, it's to be expected.



element187 said:

@rjejr May makes good business sense. They are writing off this fiscal year as a loss, so they will move everything into the next fiscal year to try to pad it.

Just hope they have more software planned from March through April... Only DK? The lack of software hurt them in the first half of 2013, I really hope they aren't planning for another game drought this year... It's time for Iwata to go shopping for some exclusive content from third parties to pad out the schedule



sketchturner said:

I'm debating whether I should buy Mario Kart Wii now or wait until I get a WiiU for MK8. My hype for MK8 is getting out of control...



allav866 said:

May is when everyone starts summer vacation, and this gives me plenty of time to save up. On the downside I was hoping for a March/April release, because Nintendo needs to release the must-have Wii U game as soon as possible.



triforcepower73 said:

@hwrose379 I'm right in there with you, man. Mines April 4. I was hoping to get this game, play for a few hrs with my friends, then go see Captain America 2. Oh well. :,(



rjejr said:

@element187 - Im still hopeing for Bayonetta 2 in March or April, but only b/c I really want that 1, And I think it needs to be out before another E3 as I think it was shown at last years and it annoys me when games shown at E3 don't get released before the next 1. Had to wait forever for Monado. And don't even get me started on The Last Guardian.



Ernest_The_Crab said:

@element187 It could end up being pretty pricey though, especially with how the console's sales are right now. They most likely wouldn't be able to get the games into that period without them being sloppy...which would be pretty dangerous.

Perhaps they intend to take a "big bath" since the year ends in March for them? Though I'm not sure if Nintendo has actually used that kind of accounting tactic before.



LoveSugoi said:

My mind is blown over Mario Kart Wii doing 1 million last year. Guessing it was a big part of those increased Wii software projections. In light of the Wii U's disappointments, it kinda feels like those Wii numbers are mocking Nintendo at this point.

And I agree with elements on the release date. MK8 should be a fresh start going into the new fiscal year. Just sucks that this one will end much like it started.



Falchion said:

Hoping March... While everyone was away on Senior trip, me and my friend were gonna skip school and play this game. O well time to break out Secret of Mana!



goonow said:

Totally thought it would come out sooner. The wii u might not last that long without mario kart lol



kereke12 said:

I wouldn't even mind, thats good that Nintendo will release it sooner. Hopefully the Wii U will fly of the shelves !



Ralizah said:

The Wii U is going to be awesome by the end of this year if a bunch of games aren't delayed.



ThePirateCaptain said:

I would have liked it to be April, but between Bravely Default, Professor Layton, Donkey Kong Country, Yoshi's Island, and the eShop, I think I can manage.



BigH88 said:

So what are we going to get for the Wii U for the months of March and April? DKTF won't be enough for almost 3 months especially if Nintendo wants to turn things around.



HandheldGuru97 said:

Prefect I can wait that long. I'm certain it will pay off (whether or not it boasts the Wii U's sales), but it better have a versus mode........



jreed3842 said:

I was really hoping for a March release, haha... but May seems reasonable enough to me!



Megumi said:

I think I'm pretty much done with Mario Kart...still, I'm pretty sure the Wii u will pick up. Nintendo did say they're going to be throwing out Wii U games every month starting with Tropical Freeze.



rjejr said:

@Williaint - Yeah, they can adn do, but we all played SM3DW for like 4 straight days over Chirstmas break. Winter break adn spring break would be more fun for them w/ new games. Guess I'll start planning a good spring break vacation now.

The other thing is, if DKCTF came out the Friday before heir week off form school I know they would buy it day 1, now they'll probably wait for a sale. They may wait until schools out for summer for MK8. They might have bought it day 1 the week before spring break. I know price doesnt matter for MK8, that won't be on sale for 5 years.



StarDust4Ever said:

Needs to be released ASAP. If the game is ready, by all means release it in the spring if need be. Mario Kart is huge, even bigger seller than Smash Brothers. IMO Nintendo also needs a day one Mario Kart / Wii-U bundle to bolster sales. And give us the physical disc, not some wanna-be digital download.



Matts14 said:

I'm glad they said May if it just stayed at spring after the next nintendo direct I would be worried about them having to delay it.



Nomad said:

So far only Donkey Kong and Mario Kart have release dates. That's two first party games for the first five months of 2014. And Reggie said that we wouldn't see the same slow trickle of releases for this year. Unless there's more to be revealed , it's looking like another software drought this year.



Kicked2TheKirb said:

@JogurtTheYogurt That's what i'm wondering?

I'm a lil over saturated with platforms... so no donkey kong for me.... i guess I'll be in a drought until May. Then Smash Bros. coming out holiday 2014 for sure.. so ?.,., is that it?! seems like a slow year.



RedYoshi999 said:

Hmm, I already got it into my head that this would be out in April, so that's a little annoying. Hopefully there's something to play in between.



Tony_342 said:

That's two months later than it should be. Although, really, it's about a year and a half later than it should be. I was hoping for March, since that's when PS4 and XBOX One will be getting what many consider to potentially be their "Killer Apps" (inFAMOUS: Second Son and Titanfall).

When the 3DS was experiencing its troubles, Iwata considered speedy development of Mario Kart 7 "an act of emergency." I wonder why he didn't feel the same with Wii U and Mario Kart 8.



idork99 said:

I'm feeling really good about this game! I'm actually glad that they've taken their time with this one. I love MK7 but I do feel that they did rush it to get it out on time for the Holiday season of 2011. This will be an EPIC MARIO KART! I can feel it! 10/10!!!



I-U said:

They want to create as much drama around the Wii U as possible don't they? Had their holiday went better, maybe I could have understood why they continue to push back a critical title but right now I'm just kind of getting fed up.



Prof_Elvin_Gadd said:

This is certainly what got the gamer part of me excited from everything that was said at the Nintendo Investors Conference earlier.



SphericalCrusher said:

Great month. Can't wait! I will be hosting tournaments for this at my house, along with Smash Bros 4. I can't wait to play more of this game!



Williaint said:

Well, for DKCTF: a friday is better than, say, a middle of the week, where they'd have less time to play consecutively. I actually thought, for a while, that TF was being released on the 12th, but it was the 21st. An earlier release would have been better... Even if Tropical Freeze is a phenomenal game, it will most likely suffer from "cookie-cutter-itis" — the same general overlook SM3DW got. This is something that, no matter how bad Mario Kart 8 is, it's going to sell (I'm not expecting it to be a bad game, there is just a lot of ignorance towards the title). April would have been a better time to release it, in my opinion. May isn't too far away, and I'd just like to say I totally agree a Wii U MK 8 bundle would be a BAD IDEA TO NOT HAVE.



Peach64 said:

I'm surprised so many people still expected it in Q1. The fact Nintendo said 2 weeks ago that they only expect too sell 400,000 Wii Us in January, February and March, pretty much confirmed it was not Q1.

A skeptical person might even said they delayed it because of the financial report. Why 'waste' Mario Kart in a financial year that is going to look bad no matter what, when you can instead use it to get your fresh new financial hear off to a good start.



ScorpionMG said:

aw, it's when my exams start -.- I hope it's at the end of may so i can finish up and start playing!!



Lord said:

With Easter just as big as Christmas for gifting and alternate egg presents I thought mk8 might have gone for that window....
Looks like the drought is back ;
January nothing first party
Feb donkey,
March nothing,
April nothing,
May kart8,
June nothing,



LoBo said:

May the what ? , I just read the briefing , and May is unconfirmed , there is no concrete date officially !!



Nintenjoe64 said:

@Peach64 I've been shocked at the number of fans that thought we'd get it in March. There are many in denial of a Q1 game drought for Wii U. I think MK8 will sort the console out a bit but the weeks before it are going to be pretty bad for Wii U. Even if we get Hyrule Warriors, SNES remix, Dr Peach and a couple of Lego games, I would still consider that a drought.

Maybe we will get an early February Nintendo Direct with some nice surprises but I get the feeling the best they could offer us is a decent virtual console library and that doesn't even look likely.



Sinister said:

This game is now pretty much 6 months late to save the WiiU.
I doubt it will have the effect on system sales we wish it could have.



MikeLove said:

So between November-May (6 months) we will only get SM3DW, DKC and MK8?? Is this a joke? Hey Nintendo, I thought 2014 was supposed to be different? I can't imagine all of Yarn Yoshi, Bayonetta 2, Smash Bros, Hyrule Warriors, Zelda-U (some people expect it this year), or Fire Emblem X will be seeing the light of day this year either based on this current release schedule.



Rafie said:

Sweet! It's in my birthday month. I will definitely be heading to Gamestop for a full preorder of this game. One of my favorite games of all time. This game will be played for YEARS!! Haha I'm excited for this. To be honest, I expect this to do better than InFamous and Titanfall. Can't wait!



Platypus101 said:

@hwrose379 then you will just have to have very happy un-birthday! woo-hoo May!! If they don't have stoopid friend codes, I think it would be awesome that they create "groups" so let's say everyone on the NL site can sign up and we can all play together, regardless of what time zone you're in!



Kirk said:

You know, that''s still basically half way through the year

What else is coming from Nintendo before Mario Kart arrives?

Donkey Kong and what else?

Genuine question.



Platypus101 said:

@Lance168 or simply well timed...nintendo just bought back a bunch of stock. That means less to payout to shareholders, thus keeping more money for nintendo. Also, I wonder what the competing consoles will be releasing at that time?



Platypus101 said:

@Lord looks like a lot of nothing!
on another note: wow! How times have changed... Back in my day, Easter was all about church and eggs!



Gerbwmu said:

Probably makes sense to push it into the new fiscal year. The boys will be excited when this comes out and since they love Mario Kart Wii I guess I'll have to buy it......ya know......for the children.....who are 2 & 4



Gerbwmu said:

@Kirk - that we know of.......nothing, at least from Nintendo. Lego Movie game comes out which should be fun for me and the boys. I'm thinking a Direct has to be coming with a release date for March or April for something (Bayonetta 2 maybe) and probably a eshop release (NES remix 2?) as well? I can't imagine. A 2 month disappearance for Wii U......



suburban_sensei said:

May is good, and actually sooner than I thought we would get it...I expected mid-late summer. I feel like with DK Tropical Freeze and a few DS titles coming out, I am set on waiting a few more months, we all know the wait will be worth it!



Shambo said:

Since they always politely thank us for our patience, I'm happy to wait for it. After all, 'a rushed game is forever bad', or something like that. And they're often right!



SigourneyBeaver said:

I honestly thought it would be sooner than that. This is pathetic. In fact, that's the correct word for Nintendo at the moment according to the Oxford dictionary.

1 • Arousing pity, especially through vulnerability or sadness
2 • informal miserably inadequate



UtopiaXD said:

Nintendo is banking too hard on releases like Mario Kart and Smash Bros.
These games are amazing titles but if they are just trail us along with small details of these titles and never get any real new projects stirring then they should stop scratching their heads and start realizing what the fans want and simply work their hardest to create new projects that would bring the WiiU to life and pay homage to the fans.



MrGawain said:

It does seem to be de ja vu of last year, doesn't it?

Can't see Bayonetta/Hyrule/Smash/Anything new until after E3. Badly run business Nintendo. Unless you have an early Feb direct to prove me wrong?

Saying that, it's about the same for the PS4/Xbone, and I'm not gonna rush out and buy one of those instead, so maybe I'll revisit one of those games I abandoned?

Assassin Creed 3?

Actually maybe I'll just sit in front of a blank screen until May.



Nintonic said:

@Aqueous Wow, I was kind of disappointed by it arriving in May but you sure made it seem better. Although by birthday is in March so that would have been better but who am I kidding? A March release? Impossible.



bobbypaycheque said:

Sweet, Mario Kart should definitely sell some consoles, and the attach rate should be outstanding. Can't wait. Luckily Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze is just around the corner to hold me over.



10000mario said:

Yes! May is great if it can stay that way, I hope it doesn't get the "please understand" and "please stay tuned" delay that DKCTF got.



Kuksenkov said:

Why are most people reacting in this way: "So nothing in March and April?"

Firts of all, i'm pretty sure most of those people are not even buying DKCTF, second...There's actually more games out there, not only the first party ones. Why not give it a chance to the third party offerings that are way cheaper now than what they were before? Why do you guys have to wait for Nintendo to release a game every single month (bi weekly if it was up to you) just to "dust off" a console, when there's a catalog of games out there for the WII U, there's the E-Shop, Virtual Console and Backwards compatibility as well!!

Sometimes I just wonder if most of these so called gamers actually think before typing.



JaxonH said:


Hey bud, today is a good day. We've got Zelda Link to the Past. We got May release for Mario Kart 8. We've got DS games coming to Wii U VC. We've been put on official notice for network based accounts... yeah, today is a good day my man.

I hate to see Nintendo with their backs against the wall, but I must admit, these are exciting times. It's been said before, but Nintendo REALLY IS at their best when the odds are stacked against them. Celebrate, this is a victory for the fans!



JaxonH said:


Or play video games at all for that matter. We've got so many great games- pick one.

New Super Mario Bros U
Pikmin 3
Wii Sports Club (Golf, Bowling, Tennis)
Wonderful 101
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate
Zelda Windwaker HD
Rayman Legends
Super Mario 3D World
Deus Ex Human Revolution
Splinter Cell Blacklist
Assassin's Creed 3/4
Call of Duty BO2/Ghosts
Darksiders 2
Sonic Racing Transformed
Injustice Gods Among Us
Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge
Batman Arkham City/Origins
Resident Evil Revelations HD
Lego City Undercover
New Super Luigi U
Dr Luigi
VC GAMES (Zelda LttP/Super Mario World/Mega Man 1-4 and X-X2/Super Metroid)

And best of all, the big mac daddy DKC is crashing the party 3 weeks from tomorrow. I'm calling it now- Tropical Freeze is going to end up being one of the best games on the Wii U this generation. And it's not like Mario Kart 8 in May is all we're getting. We still have Hyrule Warriors slated for Spring, and Watch Dogs in June. And Bayonetta 2 has a May release date on Gamestop and Newegg websites.



rjejr said:

@JaxonH - Yeah all things considered I think the day went well. I'm happy for the MK8 date, and I'm even looking forward to DK. Nintendo owes you a commission if we pick that one up at MSRP. And we're getting Spin the Bottle for $3.60. Could have been much worse. Onward and upward.



banacheck said:


Infamous Second Son & Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes both come out 21st March, both good games.

I just want release dates for Bayonetta2 & X.



Luigi789 said:

u guys do realize that a nintendo direct might be in early February that can announce new games that can fill those gaps :/

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