Mario Kart Tour launches with subscription option priced the same as Apple Arcade

Mario Kart Tour is finally available to download on iOS and Android today, marking the long-awaited debut of Nintendo’s kart racer on mobile devices. The release date was revealed a month ago, but what wasn’t known until now was that the game has an optional “Gold Pass” subscription.

The Gold Pass gives you various in-game items and badges as you play, and also unlocks the faster 200cc mode. It’s not really clear from the game’s website what any of these items are for. There’s a two-week free trial, after which you’ll have to pay $4.99 a month.

$4.99 a month is also, you may have noticed, the price for a month of Apple Arcade, Apple’s excellent new service specifically designed to fix the microtransaction-riddled hellhole that mobile gaming has descended into. Maybe Mario Kart Tour is an incredible experience that will be worth subscribing to, but my bet is that you’ll be better off spending your five bucks on Sonic Racing and, um, every other game on Apple Arcade.

We’d let you know how Mario Kart Tour is, but opening the app right now returns an error message stating that the servers are full and that our “login request will be processed in the order it was received,” which is definitely what you want to hear when opening a mobile game. Stay tuned for our eventual review.

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