Whether it’s “Grand Theft Auto,” “Rad Racer” or “Pole Position,” at some point, most people have wished their favorite driving video game could come to life. For fans of “Mario Kart,” that wish was granted at South By Southwest.
Pennzoil and Nintendo teamed up to sponsor “Mario Kart Reimagined,” where drivers raced karts equipped with radio frequency identification (RFID) scanners. Racers attempted to drive over (or avoid) icon decals embedded with RFID tags. Doing so improved the performance of the kart with a burst of speed or caused the kart to slow down, just like the video game.
GoPro cameras were mounted to the karts to stream video of the race, to which a graphic effects from the “Mario Kart” game were added. There was even an anti-gravity effect where racers appeared to be driving upside down, which of course was only viewable on the video.
You may enjoy throwing back a few Lone Stars while playing the video game with your buds, but before participants could even sit in the driver’s seat of “Mario Kart Reimagined,” they needed to blow a 0.0 on a breathalyzer. Hopefully, before getting in line, they sobered up with some barbecue brisket and didn’t forget the side of pickles. Check out the action in the following video.
Credit: Screengrab, Austin360