Mario Kart Tour lets you join friends in Team Races mode

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Mario Kart Tour multiplayer mode
You can play with and against strangers, too.
Photo: Nintendo

Mario Kart Tour version 2.1.0 has arrived in the App Store, bringing a slew of new features to Nintendo’s popular kart-racing title.

The update went live on Thursday. Its biggest new addition is the presence of a Team Races mode, allowing players to form into four separate teams for races. This adds an extra bit of zip to the game’s multiplayer mode, which went live for players everywhere in March.

Team Races can be carried out either with friends nearby, friends online, or even strangers online, Nintendo Life explains in a report Friday. That means that, even if you don’t know anyone in the real world who wants to join in with a bit of kart racing during lockdown, you’re virtually guaranteed to be able to find team mates. There is a special team podium, along with the opportunity to unlock an assortment of in-game prizes.

The other big update is the introduction of a multiplayer Room Code. This allows you to create a private game for only the people you want to participate. Using the Room Code you can create, well, a special room code to pass to up to eight players. They can then log in so that you can all race against one another.

The v2.1.0 update also mentions a couple of other upgrades. These include:

  • Support for “Expert Challenges.” According to Nintendo, these will become available in future tours.
  • Support for the “Coins Aplenty” event. This, too, will be made available in future tours.
  • Addressing an issue that stopped players from receiving a level-up reward when they advance to the next player level.

Mario Kart Tour arrived on iPhone and iPad in September last year. Since then, it’s been a big hit for Nintendo — both in terms of downloads and spending on in-app purchases. According to Apple it was the most downloaded App Store game of 2019. Nintendo has done a great job of keeping the game fresh by introducing new tours (series of tracks) along the way. Now, with this latest update, it should get another boost.

You can download Mario Kart Tour for free from the App Store. If you’ve already got it, make sure that you’ve updated to the latest version to try out the new features.