Mario Kart VR is a Japan-only Arcade game, first Nintendo property to enter VR platform

VR is here and it’s here to stay. With many indie developers using its dynamic controls and environment, the platform has gained widespread popularity among major labels as well. This time video game publisher Bandai Namco have taken a liking to VR and have decided to make a Mario Kart game based on the VR platform.

Mario Kart Arcade GP VR is what the studio has come up with and the game is compatible with Valve’s HTC Vive headset. Users will be able to control their kart using a steering wheel and instead of traditional controls, items can be activated just by the players raising their hand. Since the game is not made by Nintendo but Bandai Namco, the entire approach to the game is slightly different than players will be used to. But the changes are more interactive, with items now hanging from balloons as well as the addition of a new hammer weapon.

The game is currently going to be exclusive only to Japanese arcades. To create hype, the makers released a 30-second trailer which shows a first-person account of gameplay. The game was first spoken about in the public last month with talk spreading about its development. While the game’s existence does show the possibilities of a lot Nintendo games making their way to VR, until Nintendo themselves do that for their own franchises, other third-party gaming developers such as Bandai Namco will have to take the lead with the licensed franchises. Considering Nintendo has not been too big on the VR seen hardware wise, it seems unlikely that they will be releasing VR versions of their own games any time soon.

The game itself will feature popular tracks including new ones as well such as Princess Peach’s castle as well as a track that winds all the way down between Bowser’s airships. While there has not been any word on availability of the game outside Japanese shores, it is not impossible to have the game ported to international arcades as well. With Mario Kart VR, games will now be able to be completely immersed into their favorite tracks and be submersed in the game’s wacky mechanics. In the meantime, we can still hope and pray that Nintendo does warm up to VR and release a VR version of The Legend of Zelda already. One can hope.