Bowser's Castle (Mario Kart 8)
|Appears in||Mario Kart 8 (2014)|
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (2017)
|Based on||World 8|
|Online play||Available (Wii U until early April 2024, Switch)|
Bowser's Castle is the third course of the Special Cup in Mario Kart 8 and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. This incarnation is heavily based off the Bowser's Castle levels from recent Super Mario platformers, particularly those seen in Super Mario 3D Land, New Super Mario Bros. 2, and Super Mario 3D World. It appears to be themed after a steel foundry, particularly the inside of the castle and the lava that merely resembles a hot molten iron. It also contains more obstacles, such as Bowser Statues that shoot lasers (similar to Super Mario Bros. 3), swinging spiked balls, large rolling boulders, and Lava Geysers. One of the most notable features is the giant, fiery moving statue in a shape of Bowser himself that constantly punches the forked road to create ripples on the track.
Several minions of Bowser, such as Hammer Bros., Fire Bros., Boomerang Bros. and Dry Bones, are seen patrolling inside the castle, sometimes cheering for the drivers, while a number of Bowser's Airships, taking their design from the Super Mario Galaxy games, are seen floating around its exterior. The castle seems larger than most of its previous incarnations and has a more upbeat rock theme for its music, like the ones in Mario Kart: Super Circuit.
The course starts in the entrance of the castle. As soon as the drivers enter the castle, they see a statue of Bowser pointing to the right (signaling where to turn), along with several Bowser Statues that shoot lasers at the drivers on laps 2 and 3. After a left turn and a right turn, drivers enter an anti-gravity section. Along the way lies the ramps that the drivers can perform Tricks on, but with extreme caution, as there lie sets of Fire Bars and a Spinner. After these sections lies the square U-turn that leads to the forked road where the large Bowser Monument is. Each road curves down and around into a cavernous space with a Glide Ramp leading out of the castle. Lava Geysers gush out from the lava pit and hit drivers that collide with them. There is a slight turn left and then another U-turn, where incoming boulders launched from one of the castle's cannons will attempt to knock over any racers. After these turns lies a split path, one part of which has a ramp, and the finish line. The starting banner on the top features a fiery Mario Kart logo with a pair of Burners going out from above.
This is the only Bowser's Castle that has a giant Bowser statue that does not breathe fire. Instead, it just punches the two paths of the main road.
During the countdown to the race, the castle's portcullis is seen being raised. This is one of six courses (the others being Twisted Mansion, Electrodrome, Mount Wario, Excitebike Arena, and Piranha Plant Cove) to have an opening animation during the countdown.
- Players can use a Mushroom to boost through the black grass before the finish line.
Mario Kart 8 Original Soundtrack liner notes
"In this title, this is actually more like an fortress than a castle - it has a really aggressive feel. For the background music we went for a very direct approach, and you might even think it's a bit too in-your-face. We wanted the music to clearly signal that there is a big bad boss lurking here."
Bowser racing outside of his castle in Mario Kart 8
Lasers from the Bowser Statues, which start firing lasers when players usually enter the second lap
The Spinner jump
The giant flaming Bowser Monument
The stamp obtained for beating the staff ghost of this course
Names in other languages
|Dutch||Bowsers Kasteel||Bowser's Castle|
|French||Château de Bowser||Bowser's Castle|
|German||Bowsers Festung||Bowser's Fortress|
|Italian||Castello di Bowser||Bowser's Castle|
|Portuguese||Castelo do Bowser||Bowser's Castle|
|Spanish||Castillo de Bowser||Bowser's Castle|
- This is the only Bowser's Castle course that does not feature any Thwomps, excluding the Mario Kart: Super Circuit appearance of the Super Mario Kart Bowser Castle courses, as all hazards were removed.
- It is also the first nitro Bowser's Castle course since Mario Kart: Double Dash!! to not have a giant stone version of Bowser's mouth as the castle entrance, instead having a giant shield above the drawbridge with Bowser's emblem on it.