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Shave seconds off your time in Mario Kart Wii

Cut corners

Why stick to the track when it’s faster to cut a corner or two? In Mario Kart Wii, there are plenty of ways to shave a couple of seconds off your time or sneak into first place before your rivals even notice you’ve taken a shortcut. Check out these hints and tips to get a head-start as you try to rocket your way to the winner’s podium on the game’s Grand Prix tracks.


Coconut Mall


As you would expect in a sprawling shopping mall, there’s plenty of alternative routes you can take to cut your time. First of all, make sure you always pick an escalator that is moving in the right direction when the time comes to take the stairs. Immediately after the first escalator, you can veer right for a handy shortcut - sticking to the walkway if you don’t have a Dash Mushroom, or cutting even more of the track out by heading through the open shop door if you do.


DK’s Snowboard Cross


A tricky shortcut that requires a Dash Mushroom, this one is only for the bravest of drivers. As you descend the mountain and pass over the bumpy stretch of snow littered with ramps, you’ll see a sharp corner up ahead. Although the corner gives you the option of grabbing an item and performing a speed-boosting stunt, you can claw back a couple of vital seconds by cutting it all together. Veer right immediately after the protective barrier stops and use a Dash Mushroom to leap across the gorge below. Don’t forget to jump – and don’t look down!


Daisy Circuit


This well-concealed shortcut will definitely put some distance between you and your closest challengers. As you come round the first big right-hand turn, keep veering right towards the building on the corner. You’ll see a little gap. Drive through it, up the stairs, over the speed boost and hopefully into first place.


Koopa Cape


Winding your way round the mountain trails and river rapids of Koopa Cape is full-throttle fun from start to finish, but to make things even speedier keep these little tips in mind. As long as you are in the flowing water that runs through the course (both above ground and in the glass tunnel section) you’ll pick up extra speed courtesy of the current. If you have a Dash Mushroom, veer out of the river just before you descend down into the underwater tunnel, using the mushroom to speed you across the stretch of ground behind the huge Red Shell. This will put you in pole position for a final victory charge.


Dry Dry Ruins

This expansive track is a corner-cutter’s dream! With a supply of Dash Mushrooms, you can avoid wasting time on the track and just head off-road instead. One excellent example is the stretch of sand behind the huge Yoshi statue – but there are plenty more. Another good tip is to use the sand that piles up in the ruined temple over the course of the race as a ramp for performing stunts. As with every track, there are lots of other parts of the scenery that can be used as impromptu ramps – in this case, the pillars which fall in your path as you race are ideal for initiating stunts.


Moonview Highway

Anything that gets you away from the chaos of the busy Moonview Highway for a couple of seconds has to be good! This shortcut is found by heading to the left on the first corner of the track. You’ll see a couple of items against the wall, but if you go a little beyond them and avoid the barrier at the top of the embankment you’ll find yourself on a little platform that cuts out a section of the road and houses another item. Then it’s back down to the open road.


Wario’s Gold Mine


Just staying on the track is a huge challenge in Wario’s Gold Mine, so anything that gives you the edge over the opposition is more than welcome. When you come to the stretch of track with meandering mine carts, follow the track as far to the left as you can to discover a secret cave adorned with items and speed boosts. And if you really want to shave as many seconds as possible off your time, performing a trick on the track’s first half-pipe-style ramp will give you the boost you need to cut out a little of the corner below. It’s not much, but every second counts.


Maple Treeway


The off-road trails of Maple Treeway might make you think about the various kart and bike options open to you. For the first time, the variety of vehicles on offer includes off-road karts designed to last the pace when things get messy. No matter what kart you choose, the sweeping turns in Maple Treeway are ideal for drifting and building up full-speed boosts that you can’t achieve with bikes. Of course, the option of pulling off wheelies at will with bikes makes them a tempting option, too.

Regardless of what you choose as your ride, a handy tip in Maple Treeway is to head for the far left or right of the track as soon as you get over the bouncing net in the final straight. When you do, you’ll find hollowed out trees with speed boosts designed to give you in edge in the home stretch. It’s also worth bearing in mind that those leaf piles scattered about conceal items, so driving through could unearth a Dash Mushroom to help you along.


The speed you need

Dash Mushrooms always help in getting that speed-boost edge on the competition, but knowing where to use them, that’s the most important part of being a championship driver.