Today, the world learned of a magical company in Tokyo that rents go-carts and Mario costumes for Mario Kart-inspired tours around the city. Unfortunately, that newfound publicity only comes because Nintendo has announced it is suing the company, known as MariCar, for copyright infringement. According to its Facebook page, which as of this writing is the only one of MariCar’s websites that hasn’t been nuked out of existence, the company has been offering these tours since 2015, describing them as “only one and the best! There’s no doubt that you will stand out in such vivid, unique Go-Kart!!” And all the geeky gaijin who’ve put up YouTube videos of their MariCar tours seem like they would agree.
There’s no word on MariCar’s current status or how much money Nintendo wants, just that the game-maker is seeking “compensation for unfair competition and copyright infringement.” This legally dubious upstart is probably doomed, but at least Nintendo itself might be on the verge of opening up its own real-life Mario Kart courses in Universal theme parks around the world.