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You can play Mario Kart 8 on your PC now

The age-old problem of slinging our controls at the TV when we get blue-shelled on the finish line could end, if only we could play Mario Kart 8 — one of the greatest racing games of all time — with a keyboard instead. Or at least play at a PC desk where everything is that bit more civilized. Well now you can and it’s the latest version of the game, too. Someone actually managed to emulate Mario Kart 8 on the PC.

It’s a work in progress, so don’t expect it to be perfect, but considering just two months ago the menu was barely working, the Cemu Wii U emulator is coming on in leaps and bounds. It’s now able to play Mario Kart 8 levels on the PC. There’s missing effects and you need a pretty powerful rig to get it running smoothly, but hey, look at it. It’s Mario Kart 8 on the PC.

The most obvious problems are all to do with lighting, but the tracks are there at a decent resolution. The racers are there and they move around the track pretty smoothly. There’s even a skybox with clouds and firework effects.

And look at how far this has come on in just 0.0.1 version changes. Cemu 1.1.1 had no track or wall textures and now the game doesn’t look that different from the real deal.

For reference this was running on a PC fitted with an Intel Core-i7 4790K and a GTX 980 graphics card, so something a little more powerful than your average machine. Lower-end systems have struggled to produce the same sort of playable frame rates, but as Kotaku points out, this is all a work in progress.

The Dolphin emulator that makes playing Gamecube and Wii games on the PC possible is still being developed and worked on — it was recently made playable in VR — and improved many years after its initial release. It may be a few more years before Cemu can give us a perfect representation of what Wii U games are like on the PC, but it’s coming.

If you could play any one Wii U game on the PC, what would it be?

Jon Martindale
Jon Martindale is the Evergreen Coordinator for Computing, overseeing a team of writers addressing all the latest how to…
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