Well, this isn't exactly the news Mario Kart 8 fans were probably expecting on the eve of the launch of the Wii U karting game. Nevertheless, Mercedes of Japan has revealed plans to release a piece of free DLC for the as yet unreleased game. A rather startling piece of DLC that may cause some people's skin to crawl a bit -- but free DLC is free DLC. A playable Mercedes kart will be available for Mario Kart 8 this summer, at least in Japan.
As part of the DLC announcement very Japanese... commercial of sorts was also released. It shows gameplay from a sort of mini-game playable on a Japanese website, it's the original Super Mario Bros. only Mario is riding in a Mercedes. The commercial then transitions to a live-action clip of a realistic Mario stepping out of a car, only to get nudged by a CG goomba and cringe. It's all very surreal and uncomfortable. And weird. Ridiculously weird.
I understand that Nintendo may be having certain financial issues, but a Mercedes? In Mario Kart? Here's a community already frustrated with the character selection in the game, and apparently a marketing promotion for launch day's much more of a priority. I've got to be straight forward, everyone. This is pretty gross. I feel gross even writing about this, but I think it's something important to share with everyone. Nintendo was once a company that said they weren't interested in DLC, and now we have Mercedes karts.
Mario Kart 8 will be launching exclusively on Wii U tomorrow. Whether or not this, erm, DLC will be released anywhere other than Japan is yet unclear. I'm sure if there's enough excitement, god forbid, then Nintendo and Mercedes will do what they can to make it happen.