News Article

Mario Kart 8 Accelerates to Number One on Amazon Japan

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Top 10 in the UK

After confirming a May release in late January, Nintendo used its latest Direct broadcasts to announce that Mario Kart 8 will arrive on 30th May in North America and Europe, with it arriving one day earlier in Japan. That official date has seen retailers start to open pre-orders, and Nintendo is no doubt watching to see whether the latest home console entry in the series can prompt the same buzz as its Wii predecessor.

Some very early signs are positive, with an eye-catching result in Japan. At the time of writing the pre-order product on Amazon Japan has stormed to number one in its video game best sellers chart, seeing off a mix of other pre-orders and current releases. There's no current listing on, but the UK equivalent chart currently has the kart racer in ninth place, which is reasonable for a game not due for three and a half months.

There seems to be some buzz in the early days of pre-orders, then, which can only be a good thing for its launch prospects. You can check out the latest trailer below, once again; let us know whether you're hyped for Mario Kart 8's arrival.

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Many thanks to Benedict for the tip.

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User Comments (96)



enderboy221 said:

Well, that's good. I REALLY want this game, but unfortunatly there is a 3 month wait...



unrandomsam said:

Pre orders don't mean much with Amazon you can cancel at any time. (And you get the best price usually lots earlier and e.g ebay sellers will always do it to then sell at a higher amount).

Amazon JP's most preordered game ever was Doki Doki Majo Shinpan. Make of that what you will.



DanMan82 said:

As I said in the forum thread about this, if this is anything like what happened with Pokémon X & Y on Amazon, this could potentially be great news! I definitely can't wait to get my hands on this along with Smash Bros. 4



Warbeard said:

Wish they'd tried for some double-dash evolution of the game - isnt this essentially just Mario Kart 7 where you can ride upside down?



Peach64 said:

While I'm sure it's going to be the best selling Wii U game so far, I'm not sure Amazon pre-orders are the best way to judge stuff. How many times did we have articles last year about the Wii U jumping up into the best selling items on Amazon UK, without it actually making any difference to the sales figures?



AdanVC said:

So great to finally see a Wii U game on the top of pre-orders at least in Japan considering there's still more than 3 months left for release. Let's hope as we come closer to May 30 the game can reach critical levels of hype so both the game and Wii U console can sell like pancakes. Then a week later is E3 and there let's hope Nintendo can now really bring the all-mighty bombs so Wii U can finally gain momentum until the big 2014 holiday release: Smash Bros.



LittleIrves said:

Best news of this article: The headline image confirming that Music Park is a retro track holdover from MK7. Which HOPEFULLY means an update/sequel of Wii Music could be coming. With Miiverse, innovative GamePad controls, and HD visuals, that would instantly be my most-wanted game.



sinalefa said:

Interesting to hear this with the PS4 releasing in Japan around a week from now. And considering Mario Kart games usually keep selling for months or even years, it is a positive thing.



rjejr said:

I've posted this a few other times elsewhere but it actually seems relevant here:

Target has $1 pre-order cards that get you a $5 Gift card when you pick up the game. The photo on it looks pretty good to if anybody wants to keep it for a souvenir.



Grumblevolcano said:

@LittleIrves That logic is reasonable. DK Jungle was in the trailer and that's obviously promoting DKCTF (though the track was based on DKCR). Tick Tock Clock could mean SM64 on Wii U VC soon or HD remake and Grumble Volcano possibly meaning NSMB being one of the first DS games on Wii U VC.



MrWalkieTalkie said:

While the new Direct didn't show any exciting new games for Wii U, it certainly did build up hype for what we already know is coming soon! Those trailers to Mario Kart, Bayonetta, Donkey Kong, Smash Bros, and X really got me pumped!



PerezBro99 said:

Every mario kart has a small improvement over the last one. I can easily say "Double-Dash is just mario kart with 2 people/car" or "mario kart wii is just mario kart with bikes"
By the way, I'm a HUGE mario kart fan I'm so hyped for this game!!!



rjejr said:

@Shpongled_Mario - I guess it's permanent until they run out of cards They only had a few last time I was there - I didn't look today, I was in the PS section looking at the W_D cards - but they usually have them until the games release. Though I think they ran out of Pokemon X but they still had a bunch of Pokemon Y when those games came out. Target is weird like that. Here's this weeks ad:

They usually have sales where you save money on 1 game when you buy a pre-order card. This sale had 8 games, none of which were on the Wii U. Target is weird like that as well. Good luck.



Shpongled_Mario said:

@Grumblevolcano I am SOOOO hoping for Super Mario 64 HD. I would pay $100 to have it no lie! I'll still settle for Wii U virtual console of course, but that's one game I would pay top dollar for in HD.



JaxonH said:


I like Mario Kart 7. It was a fun game, and personally the best handheld Mario Kart I've ever played. But this is something else. All Mario Karts have the same premise- you race. So you could arguably say "well isn't this just the same game" about any of them. They have small differences, but they're all Mario Kart. The reason people buy it each generation, aside from the fact they want to play on their newest consoles/handhelds, is the improvements, new tracks, new characters, and new Mario Kart Experience.

Judging from what we've seen thus far, this game is no more Mario Kart 7 than Super Mario 3D World was 3D Land. Same basic premise, WORLD of difference.



Shpongled_Mario said:

@rjejr Saw that add but I only buy physical copies especially since the game case is red instead of blue but I appreciate you trying to help. I may get one of those for VC games and stuff only on the eShop though. Do you know if Dr.Luigi is gonna be made into a physical copy or if it's gonna be download only permanently? If it's permanent I may use it for that.



JaxonH said:

Jaxon's Plan of Action Until Mario Kart 8

Now: Finish last hr of Tomb Raider, then finish House of Cards Season 2
Feb 21: Take off work for DKC Tropical Freeze release- play all weekend
Then: Finish Zelda Link Between Worlds and start Bravely Default
Mid-March: Check out Yoshi's New Island and FFX/X-2
April- Try out Infamous Second Son and see if it's any good or
May 2- Start playing Kirby Triple Deluxe, then start Mario Golf World Tour
May 30- you know what time it is



Wolfgabe said:

Now if they could announce a Mario Kart bundle that would be guaranteed to move systems



rjejr said:

@Shpongled_Mario - I can't imagine Dr. Luigi ever getting a disc version. I also can't imagine anybody paying $30 for a disc version of Angry Birds so who knows.



NintyMan said:

I wish it was at least mid-May and not the end of it, but at least I have Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, upcoming 3DS games, and a couple of other Wii U games from Christmas to tide me over. I've already watched the new trailer several times. The remastered DK Jungle from 7 makes me hope for a Tropical Freeze track. Probably not, but it would be really cool.



sadsack777 said:

I hope the online will be brill love to play all over the world so I can beat them uk win lol



CaptOlimar30 said:

With so many playable characters I'm guessing this game will be my favorite since Double Dash. The game also happens to look amazing (level design and graphics) and zero-gravity is just a great idea! I can't wait til (the end of) May.



Caryslan said:

Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros 4 are the two games that will make or break the Wii U. If both prove to be highly successful games, than the Wii U may finally get the big system sellers that its needed since it launched.

On the other hand, if they flop, then I doubt Nintendo would have anything else that could potentally push the Wii U's numbers.

This is great news about Mario Kart 8! I hope it proves to be a very successful game! Mario Kart is probally Nintendo's killer app for their consoles, with Smash being a close second.



CapeSmash said:

@JaxonH #31 I agree 100%! Racing games are kind of hard to innovate, so I'm sick of people saying "It's just Mario Kart 7, but upside-down."

I personally thought Mario Kart 7 was the worst Mario Kart ever made, but MK8 looks really good!



JaxonH said:


Please refer to my previous post.

Of course it resembles it- it's a Mario Kart game. But hey, if you or anyone else is content just sticking with Mario Kart 7 thinking it's the same thing, by all means go right ahead. But don't be surprised if the rest of us don't share that sentiment



Ootfan98 said:

l hope they include previous Mario Kart tracks. They could also do extra tracks as add on content. I would love to get all N64 tracks in HD



JaxonH said:


Ya. Some Mario Kart games have been better than others. My personal favorite of all time is, of course, Mario Kart 64.

I've been playing Mario Kart since the Super Nintendo. I was playing this game BEFORE it blew up into a mega-franchise, and I've played every last one of them to date. I know my Mario Kart, and I know it pretty well. And as a long time fan, I can personally attest that I haven't been this excited about a Mario Kart game since the N64 days.

I hated Double Dash when it released, though I have come to appreciate it more in recent years. And Mario Kart Wii had awkward controls. They adjusted turning and sliding due to motion controls, and I never quite adjusted. Though again, I have come to appreciate the game more as of late. Mario Kart 7 was a return to form imo, though it was limited by being a handheld game. Mario Kart 8 though? It appears they've FINALLY nailed it on the head. This is the Mario Kart game I've been waiting for. This is it.



LoveSugoi said:


Point made about Doki Doki Shinpan but Amazon JP is still a pretty big retailer there (at least from what I gather making J-pop purchases as they usually get the exclusives and special bonuses reserved for other big Japanese retailers) so I doubt they have like only 50 copies of the game. I'd still take it as something meaningful even though we hardly need the affirmation that this game will be a big seller.

The Doki Doki situation is quite strange though. It seems what killed sales was being universally critically panned but what even got people hyped for that game in the first place...?



Caryslan said:

@babyguess Zelda sells good, but its been pretty hit or miss in recent years. Skyward Sword did not do very well in Japan from what I recall, and it sold below what Twilight Princess did on the Wii alone(not counting Gamecube version sales)

So, while I consider Zelda a soild seller, and something Nintendo needs to help push the Wii U, I don't think it is a series that pushes hardware the way Mario Kart or Smash Bros does.

About the only Zelda that I recall being a true system seller(Meaning people went out and bought a system for that single game) was OOT on the N64, and argubly, Twilight Princess on the Wii. Maybe A Link To the Past might be in that group as well, because it did push SNES sales and it came out pretty early.

Most Zelda games do sell well, but most of them come out late or in the middle of a system's lifespan. Look at Zelda U, it will likely come out in 2015, at the earilest, which means the Wii U will have been on the market for three years.

As I said before, I do think Zelda can sell and get people onto a system, but the series simply lacks that mass appeal that Mario Kart, Wii Sports, or a Smash Bros have.



TwilightOniAngel said:

damn a 3 month wait thats going to take forever at least i have donkey kong country tropical freeze and a bunch of indie games coming out soon will help me wait.



idork99 said:

To say that I'm hyped is an understatement. I'm already counting the days!

Something that would be nice (like the big number of character selection) to see, but most likely won't happen, is to attempt to have more than 32 courses! Go for 40+!



Sean_Aaron said:

Definitely hyped as I've never owned a Mario Kart game and haven't played one since Super Mario Kart on a friend's SNES back in the day. Shame we can't pre-order from the eShop!

@LittleIrves: seconded. Wii Music was such a missed opportunity. The improved network features of the Wii U along with the ability to provide DLC and the social network aspect are simply begging to a follow-up. Whilst I'm sure more mini-games would be required in order to placate those who are looking for more than a musical toy, I'd just love to have a more fully-realised version of that original concept.



MAB said:

It would be in everyones best interest to get the D4L version of MK8 because there will no doubt be framerate issues and other problems using the disc



unrandomsam said:

@JaxonH I don't think they will have the AI like I want it. (Arcade GP was ok). The AI should be more like All Stars Racing Transformed or F-Zero GX make it worthwhile actually learning the tracks and how to play the game. Have some characters that are a little bit better but much harder to use. First time I ever played the Wii version I won against somebody who had been playing it for a quite a while just by a lucky bullet bill that just makes it a waste of time for me.



KryptoKrunch said:

Dang, didn't take long for the usual suspects to come in with their negativity.

Either way, really excited for this.



JaxonH said:


Ya I know your stance on this game, but personally I like it for that. Imo, that's what makes Mario Kart stand out above the rest. You're not gonna be lapping the AI and you've always got a slight chance of catching up when in last place. But it's not completely random. Sure, you might get lucky and beat a veteran. That's because all it takes is one lucky shot at the right time to put someone out of the race. But I think that's what makes it fun.

Mario Kart is unpredictable in many ways- you and anyone else can get taken out on the 3rd lap, so it can work for or against you. Nonetheless, skill is required. If you play often, you'll realize just how much it really does play a factor.

I, as a veteran, can play 150cc Grand Prix and there's a pretty good chance I'll nab a gold trophy, although that randomness can, every now and then, cost me the cup (as can my own mistakes). And a rookie can play 150cc Grand Prix, and there's a pretty good chance they won't be able to win the cup. Skill bleeds through in the results. It's just not the ONLY factor is all.

But ya, it's all about personal preference. I mean, to me the game is exceptionally fun because of the fact you're never safe, no matter how good you are. But to you, maybe you just like knowing the only obstacle you face is your own limits of skill. That's cool, whatever floats your boat.

***Off the record, I do agree about Sonic Transformed and F-Zero GX. AI was perfect for those games. I just think this is a slightly different breed of game, and what makes Mario Kart, well, Mario Kart. I would be ok with them toning it down a little bit, but not too much> I mean, there was nothing wrong with Sonic Transformed AI- it worked great for that game. I just think Mario Kart is a game that's a little more chaotic and unpredictable- staples of the franchise. I love Transformed exactly how it is, but I like Mario Kart exactly how it is too.




I may have to wait a bit after release to get it. My wallet needs all the help it can get so I can buy both versions of SSB4.



unrandomsam said:

@JaxonH You are never really safe in Transformed either you can go first to last in 10 seconds on the last lap. I don't remember the way rubberbanding was being such an issue in the SNES (50hz version running at 60hz at the time I didn't realise it was PAL optimised) or N64 versions (Which I played 4 player with 4 people living in the same house who all played it quite a bit). The Namco Arcade versions are the same basic game just with minor changes. (Don't see why the choice isn't available).



hcfwesker said:

@MAB D4L (Digital for life) in Nintendo translation means ... Digital 4 as long as your system doesn't break or get stolen.

I'd LOVE to go digital only, but until the account system is fixed it's all retail for me, except eShop only stuffz.



unrandomsam said:

@PrincessSugoi I don't know much about it other than it was made by SNK (That is how I found out about it in the first place).

It always end up costing an absolute fortune when I get something from Japan also. (I got the Wii Neo Geo stick from



Blast said:

Wii U sales are gonna shoot up like crazy when this game releases



Senario said:

@JaxonH To be fair, it is possible to Lap AI chars in some of the games due to snaking. Though the last mario kart game I played where I could do that was DS. I don't dislike it though, competitive racing mechanics and not that easy to do.



sinalefa said:


From what I have read, the game had a lot of fan service (similar to Senran Kagura Burst) so I guess that was the reason. Crazy, I know.



Luna-Harmony said:

Cool i am going to pre-order now ... does any thing there will be a limited edition of this game ?



tedko said:

@unrandomsam @JaxonH I don't have a problem with the bullet. It just lets people in last place catch up a bit. And you definitely will not win consistently without skill. You can win occasionally by getting lucky. All I ask for MK8 is they tone down the blue shells, or at least give some reasonable way to defend against them. I thought they were way too frequent in MK7.

Anyway I'm excited for this. Mario Kart is the funnest multiplayer series IMO



JaxonH said:


I can agree to that. Some way to defend, or some chance of not getting hit. Currently, my strategy is to fall behind into second place for much of the race, and break out on the final stretch. That or fall behind once you hear the shell approaching so that it targets the one who passes you. There is strategy to this game, more than people realize sometimes...



XavandSo said:

So. Hyped. For. Mario. Kart. 8. That. I. Even. Pre-ordered. In. January. 2013.
I honest to the Goddesses of the Triforce, I have dreams about Mario Kart 8. I did last night. It shot the Wii U's sales so high, it beat the PS2 by 20 million. I musta' been trippin' on LSD or somethin'.



MJKOP said:

Dreams can come true... Lol, on the blue shell, I hit the breaks when I hear it coming and if I gotta get hit, try to take out those behind me too in its blast



Inkling said:

Well, since boxing day last year I've seen, in the same area, about 12 (Two of them couples, one of them a four man group and the rest are kids) people enjoying Wii U with SM3DW and Lego City Undercover. One of them was saving up, the rest thinking about it. So, good news awaits!



LoBo said:

I preordered MK8 from Amazon UK back in October 2013
The game has been available to preorder for along time over here.




The wii u is getting itself a decent game selection, so I do believe things are gonna pick up.

The only people that will never buy a wii u are the pure haters that would never buy one no matter what. But proper gamers that enjoy great games no matter where they are found will buy a wii u.



Nintenjoe64 said:

@MAB retail for show, digital for a pro

Anyone worried about the lack of games between now and MK should buy Uncharted Waters: New Horizons. I reckon it will be 2016 before I fully understand the game.



faustcoolio said:

If Nintendo does not plan to release additional levels as add-ons they should include level building editor. I had so much fun with community levels on Wii.



Silent said:

@Warbeard Visually and Gameplay wise they look stunning. The new track designs are engaging and with the anti-gravity, I literally got an adrenaline rush when I saw the airport and night club tracks. You have to understand that, even with these changes, they won't change whats good about Mario Kart and what people like about the games. Obviously, the similarities are there but there are many new things. Its like saying Bayonetta 2 is just Bayonetta with a new haircut or Animal Crossing NL is just Wild World better graphics.



drumsandperc92 said:

man i'm so very tempted to pick up a Wii U soon. I bought a PS4 instead this holiday (it had more games at launch/coming soon that I wanted to play than the Wii U) but you always want what you can't have, right?
The more I see of MK8, and after going back and comparing it to MK Wii, it really does look phenomenal.
Smash has yet to impress me as much, but I'd also love to play Mario 3d World & Wind Waker HD.
Still, $350 for the Wind Waker bundle is still too steep for me after shelling out for PS4. But i refuse to buy a Wii U on ebay, I want to support Nintendo!
Guess i gotta start saving up...I feel like by the end of 2014 (hopefully with a Zelda U and maybe something else announced) there will be no reason NOT to own a Wii U anymore.



Shpongled_Mario said:

@rjejr never heard of Tru is it in the U.S.? And I used the money from returning my water damaged 3ds xl to pay for dk in full as well as picked up Pokémon x back in November lol. Got $90 for it.



Kirk said:

This is one of the most polished and all-round well realized Nintendo games for Wii U and if Nintendo just had say 6 first party games a year of this all-round near perfect looking standard (along with all their other games), which even though many of it's games are very high quality they simply don't look close to this level of all-round polish and realization, then it might help the Wii U just a bit more.

Nintendo really needs to be releasing at least one arguably top-of-the-genre first party game every couple of months because without the third party support it desperately needs this is all the Wii U really has to go on for the most part.

Unfortunately Nintendo isn't even managing that.



Warbeard said:

@Silent I agree in part with what you say - the graphics and the gameplay look phenomenal as always, but stagnation is never a good thing - I hope I am wrong and that the side-ways/upside-down driving will bring something unexpected to the gameplay-table, but the game shouldnt resemble the previous game too much



Action51 said:

@Warbeard It IS a racing game...

But to your point, it's got anti-grav tracks, customizable vehicles (to what degree, we don't fully know yet), expanded roster, new tracks(that airport looked sweet!), and a whole hell of a lot more innovation then your typical racing game gets from installment to installment.

If anything, it looks much more innovative over recent installments then other popular racing franchises...for some reason games like Gran Turismo, Need for Speed, and Forza get a pass when they are extremely similar and launch closer together. For the record, I think all of the racing series I mentioned are top notch, with a few bad installments here and there.

That's the curse of being Nintendo...high expectations.

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