Ars Technica's Reviews
All in all, these missing features and changes for the worse are disappointing blemishes on what is still an incredibly enjoyable game. Mario Kart 8 isn't the best game in the series, but it adds enough new visual, gameplay, and track design flourishes to its well-trodden core kart-racing gameplay to be worth a look.
Overall, the campaign is solid, if uninspiring. It didn't have any of the jawdropping moments of the first Modern Warfare, nor any spectacular set pieces. The shooting works well, you'll blast through it in about 6-8 hours, and then you'll put it away forever. On the single-player front, I'm still waiting for a new Call of Duty 4. Maybe I'm just too old and jaded.
Ultimately, there's more meat on the second act's puzzle bones, especially due to a memorable final-blast puzzle, and while the game's ending was more of a whimper than a bang—and it included some cockamamie ways to tie up the plot's loose ends—I appreciated the restraint on the writers' part to not force melodrama or melancholy on what eventually transpired. This game is the story of two young people who face the ups and downs of throwing off the shackles of youth—and it's also about their family and loved ones being there the whole way through.