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There have been comments bouncing around online in the past day or so regarding Mario Kart 8 being sold early by some retailers. It brings to mind the early arrival of Pokémon X & Y in October 2013, though that was far more contentious due to the desire of Nintendo and Game Freak that some surprises would remain unspoiled until the global release date. There aren't the same concerns with a kart racer, naturally, though envy is inevitable.

Reports of some Sears stores in the U.S. being rather confused and selling stock as early as 26th May have been doing the rounds, but it seems a host of others are receiving their copies early, likely from online retailers in particular. The Mario Kart 8 Miiverse community, which is quietly live if not displayed on the front page of the service, is positively bursting with fresh posts. The clear signs of those posting from the game are those with stamps and, more obviously, screenshots and videos. Some gamers are clearly already enjoying the pleasures of Mario Kart TV and, evidently, successfully using the in-game YouTube export tool.

You can visit the page for yourself, while we jumped online with our review copy and were placed in a race within a couple of seconds of trying. For the vast majority awaiting copies, envy is the only option.