2003 Award Winners, Part Ten!

Mario Kart – Double Dash!
Developer: Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo
Release Date: 11/17/2003
AWARD WON: Best Driving Game -2003

Chris Bowen
I’m historically not much for the Mario sports games. I’m a sports gamer, tried and true, and I like my sports like I like my sex; with a minimum amount of toys and whirly things. It can be imagined how frustrating it is for someone as good as I am at sports like baseball, football and tennis to be defeated by his 7 year old brother based on nothing but special moves. For that reason, I tend to stay away from the Mario sports titles for the sake of my sanity and my controllers.

But Mario Kart is different. I don’t quite know why; maybe it’s because I’m not as good at racing games, and therefore, not as serious about them. But while I could dropkick my poor controller after losing a tennis set to a plumber with a vacumn cleaner, losing a race because I got nailed with a blue turtle shell is A-OK with me, and actually makes me laugh. The only problem I’ve ever had with Mario Kart is that every two-bit announcer has a genre to throw their shitty liscenses into; did anyone under the age of 20 even HEAR of Woddy Woodpecker before it had a f*cking racing game dedicated to it?

Mario Kart: Double Dash is probably my favourite game in the entire series. A good mix of characters, weapons, and the addition of a new mechanic (Blue sparks) kept a genre that has every opportunity to go stale fresh. It still sells well today (as evidenced by the fact that four years later, a new copy still commands a $30 price tag at EB Gestapo), and is still a popular play whenever I go to see my family in Stratford, as my smallest brother – now 9 – practically demands we play as soon as I step in the door.

Naturally, the little shit still kicks my ass almost every race. Naturally, I still laugh as my Yoshi/Daisy combo gets blown sky-high by yet another damned blue shell.