Mario Kart Tour’s beta test is currently underway to give Nintendo’s many fans a first look at the mobile port of the Mario Kart series. Users in the United States and in Japan have gotten the first shot at the game, and while they’re prohibited from sharing screenshots or footage from the beta, that’s hardly ever enough to dissuade everyone from doing so. Inside peeks at the game’s features and gameplay have surfaced to show a simplified set of mechanics combined with a monetization system mobile players will be familiar with.
In the video above, we see some of the gameplay from Mario Kart Tour that shows how players will drive around and race against others. It looks a whole lot like the Mario Kart experience players have become accustomed to except for the fact that users only need a single finger to play. By lifting your finger off the screen, you’ll move in a straight line while following the course. You’ll angle your character to the left and right and can pick up slide boosts this way, and you’ll also be able to pick up items still and toss them at your opponents.
People on ResetEra and Twitter (via Eurogamer) have shared additional details on the game’s monetization system, and it looks like it employs some gacha elements. Gems serve as the game’s premium currency, and they’re used to get random items from green pipes that could be anything from another driver to a new glider. These items and characters have unique bonuses depending on what stage they’re used on, Kotaku reports. Certain characters are indeed rarer than others, and rarer ones appear to have better bonuses. Coins exist as another currency to buy things from a store with rotating items.
Good to see some Mario Kart Tour screenshots, at last! Looks like characters will be unlocked with a gacha mechanic, just like in Fire Emblem Heroes, and a few retro courses will be coming back! Each character has an special item and many of them can be carried at the same time. pic.twitter.com/zlbLuTZ8ba— TodoNintendoS (@TodoNintendoS) May 22, 2019
There’s also a stamina system in place that limits playtime and requires players to wait until their hearts refill to keep playing. Of course, there’s always the option to purchase more yourself with the gems.
Everything that’s seen and described here is currently still in the beta stage, so there’s always the chance that it could change before the full game is released.