Mario Kart 8 Deluxe DLC Characters
Image: Nintendo Life

The February Nintendo Direct Showcase gave us our first look at Wave 4 of the upcoming Mario Kart 8 Deluxe DLC, which will not only bring the all-new Yoshi's Island course our way but will also add Birdo to the roster of playable characters.

This Wave will be the first of its kind to being a new character into the mix and we'd be lying if we said that we weren't excited to see it. Yeah, drivers might not make all the difference to a race, but we do love trying out all those little guys nonetheless.

What went unmentioned in the Direct Showcase itself, however, is that Birdo will not be the last character to be added to the game. In fact, if you take a look through Nintendo's official summary of the Direct's contents, then you will notice one specific line that reads, "Returning characters from the Mario Kart series will be added in future waves." Characters. Plural.

Armed with the knowledge that there are more returning racers to come, we immediately started going through the back catalogue of Mario Kart games gone by, reminding ourselves which familiar faces are yet to make an appearance in MK8D. To our surprise and delight, there's actually a whole bunch of them, including a family of Kongs (Diddy, Funky, Jr., Dixie), Honey Queen, Pauline, and a bunch more.

Now, we don't know whether these drivers are going to be added on a Wave-by-Wave basis, with only one new face appearing each time around, but that isn't going to stop us from picking out the ones we'd most like to see — and we thought you might like to do the same.

Below we have assembled a list of every character who has appeared in a Mario Kart game but isn't in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. We have skipped over all of the outfit variants from Mario Kart Tour to just focus on the characters themselves, so don't expect to see the likes of Musician Mario — though leave a comment if there's a specific outfit you want to see.

So, have a look through the potential newcomers and vote for which one you most want to see added...

Which character would you like to see added to Mario Kart 8 Deluxe? (3,889 votes)

  1. Boomerang Bro
    Boomerang Bro  0.2%
  2. Captain Toad
    Captain Toad5%
  3. Chargin' Chuck
    Chargin' Chuck  0.9%
  4. Diddy Kong
    Diddy Kong20%
  5. Dixie Kong
    Dixie Kong3%
  6. Donkey Kong Jr.
    Donkey Kong Jr.4%
  7. Fire Bro
    Fire Bro  0.1%
  8. Funky Kong
    Funky Kong13%
  9. Hammer Bro
    Hammer Bro  0.7%
  10. Honey Queen
    Honey Queen1%
  11. Ice Bro
    Ice Bro  0.1%
  12. Kamek
  13. King Bob-omb
    King Bob-omb4%
  14. Monty Mole
    Monty Mole2%
  15. Nabbit
  16. Paratroopa
  17. Pauline
  18. Peachette
    Peachette  0.8%
  19. Petey Piranha
    Petey Piranha6%
  20. R.O.B
  21. Wiggler

Outside of your top choice, who else would you like to see make the cut? Build your team of dream additions in the comments below, and let us know if — heaven forbid — we've missed one. 3, 2, 1, GO!