Nintendo DS: Day 11 (Punk MarioKart DS Players)

   21 November 2005, mid-morning

Toys “R” Us had a sale last week; all the Nintendo DS games they sold were selling for $10 dollars off. I bought two games, AdvanceWars DS, which Ju-lian had recommended, and MarioKart DS, which most everyone on the planet had recommended. I hadn’t planned on getting MarioKart DS so soon, but $10 off a $45 game is a pretty big discount. I played a few rounds of the game on the subway ride home. The game plays pretty much like all the other MarioKart games that have come before it. MarioKart is like Grand Turismo, but without the spinning out all the time.

The single player game was fun enough, but I really wanted to try and play a multiplayer game online. Getting online is easy. The Nintendo DS will find any active hot spots around you, which it can then connect to. (The hot spot doesn’t have to be unsecured, but the DS only supports WEP. The Wi-Fi connection at my new place is open, if you can believe that, so I didn’t have to bother with setting up a WEP key or anything like that.) You can associate your game with your account at the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, which I did. Right now this doesn’t earn you much. It would be cool if you could look other people up on the website, which you can’t do right now.

Playing online with strangers is a lot of fun. I was playing well into the night against random people from around the world over the past weekend. I’m not sure where the people I was playing against actually are from mind you. I picture exotic locales, but they may have been down the road for all I know. In a multiplayer Wi-Fi connection game, you play 4 rounds of races, the person who gets the most points winning the series. (You are award 10 points for coming in first, 8 for second, etc.) If you win the series, the number of wins associated with your account is bumped up; if you lose, the number of losses is bumped up. When you play against other people, their record will show up on your screen.

The problem with tracking these sorts of statistics is that people have a bad habit of trying to game such systems. One thing I’ve noticed is that a lot of the people that play MarioKart DS are punks. After the first round of racing, the loser for the round will usually disconnect. This means their record will be unaffected; for all intents and purposes the race never happened. I’ve had everyone drop out of a game just before I am declared the winner because they don’t want their record tarnished. Sometimes I feel like I’m the only person stupid enough to play a series of races to the end. Nintendo should really track how many times a person disconnects or gets disconnected, in addition to wins and looses. It might stop people from frivolously quiting a race prematurely. Despite the annoying people, the game is a lot of fun. I can see why the reviews have been so stellar.

Mario Kart Friend Code
124613 – 689838

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Comments

  1. I hope you don’t plan on playing with your little new toy when I am anywhere near you. It’s bad enough you go right to my computer when you come visit so you can check on your site, now this?! 8o|

  2. Is Ram’s website the most effective way of communicating your grievances to him? If so, that’s pretty funny.

  3. He should be so lucky! There’s also the occasional bitchy emails, phone calls, and visits. He’s such a lucky boy. :P

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