Best Mario Kart DS Cups

The Top Ten
1 Special Cup

I agree with you darthvadern. A lot of the special cups are not that good for a finale of the game, and this one is no exceptions. Wario Stadium is probably my favorite stadium in the series (besides its remake), because of the way the places of the obstacles make it stands out. Peach Gardens has a very good concept, and dodging the chain chomps is a blast. Bowser Castle is cool, with a few good obstacles here and there, especially the rolling cylinder. It's probably the best Bowser Castle, that doesn't have a giant bowser statue. The rainbow road on the other hand is probably the weakest in the series besides the one on N64. It does have a sick loop, but that's pretty much it.

This Special Cup unfortunately wasn't very special at all. Well then again I'm not always too fond of the special cups unfortauntely, depsite how they're the finale of the games (in nitro courses). The main stars in these cups are a new Bowser's Castle and a Rainbow Road, but unfortunately, this game has among the weakest courses in those series' of tracks. They're still decent but they're nothing too good. Wario Stadium and Peach Gardens are fairly good tracks though which places the Special Cup in the middle of the list.

2 Star Cup

The Star Cup has a tendency of being one of the highlights of a Mario Kart Game, quite often actually. Most of the courses tend to be relatively hard and/or intermediate and the course designs quite often get original, and so is the case with this game's Star Cup, even if time has seen more powerwful ones. DK Pass and Tick Tock Clock are alright courses although they feel very quiet and mono. Mario Circuit is one of the best Mario Circuits (and Circuit tracks in general) in my opinion with a fair amount of originality and places. The main star (no pun intended) though is Airship Fortress, one of my all-time favourite Mario Kart courses with its amazing music, setting and course design high up in the sky. Overall it gets 4th place.

Best cup in Mario Kart DS, without a doubt. Mario circuit is very boring, even for a Mario Circuit, but all the others are very good. Tick Tock Clock has an amazing clock theme, that makes a lot of great obstacles. DK Pass has great music, cool snow balls and snowman to dodge, and the jump at the end is simple but effective. Airship Fortress is a great reference to the airship levels, with amazing obstacles based on those airship levels.

Tick Tock Clock is a great track. Airship Fortress is simply epic.

3 Flower Cup

The best cup in this game is without a doubt the Flower Cup. Every course in this cup was at least good in my opinion, even Desert Hills, one of the most hated Mario Kart courses ever. I thought it was decent because I liked the music. The other three courses are spectacular though. Delfino Plaza is among the best courses of all time with its bridge and Super Mario Sunshine theme, Waluigi Pinball is among the most original courses ever stepping foot on this game and Shroom Ridge is a beautiful mountainside highway waking lots of nostalgia from my trips to Norway. Easily my favourite cup of the bunch.

This cup is pretty cool, but not the best. Desert Hills is pretty empty for me despite the fire balls. Delfino Square is honestly one of the most overrated track, because the only things that stands out is the bridge, and some shortcuts. If it didn't have the word Delfino in it, I bet it would be not as popular. Shroom Ridge just have cars, but at least it looks decent I guess. Waluigi Pinball however is amazing for reasons that many people already covered up.

4 Leaf Cup

Leaf Cup is the second best retro cup in my opinion, which doesn't say a lot. Koopa Beach 2 is the best remake of the SNES in DS, which also doesn't say a lot, but is still a cool thing. Choco Mountain is a little bit overrated, because it's just a mountain with chocolate, and it doesn't even look very good, however it does have an avalanche of chocolate chunks to shake things up. Luigi Circuit is pretty much like most of the boring circuit tracks, but at least it has rain, and water puddles, as well as a Luigi air balloon. Mushroom Bridge is probably the most butchered of the Double Dash remakes, since the limitation of the DS, forced the developpers to take out all the interesting thing in the track. The shortcut at the side of the track? Gone. The boost panels on the walls of the bridge? Gone. The bomb, and mushroom cars? Gone. It is excusable since like I said, it's because of the limitation of the DS, but it doesn't change the fact that the track is now just a track with cars on ...more

The Leaf Cup was the only cup out of the retro ones this time to recieve a good score from me. Maybe it was the track selection..., yeah it was. SNES Koopa Beach 2 is the best SNES remake in the game because it has challenge but it's not overboard, but it's not empty either luckily, as say Donut Plains 1. N64 Choco Mountain is one of the best courses here, with GBA Luigi Circuit and GCN Mushroom Bridge being enjoyable courses.

5 Lightning Cup

Probably my favorite retro cup in the game. Sure it has the remake of Yoshi Circuit, which I already found the original to be overrated since despite the Yoshi shape, it has a serious lack of obstacles related to the theme of the course, so imagine how I find the remake that has the limitation of the DS that prevents it to have the same pirhana plants, and doesn't have one of the shortcuts. However, the others are very decent. Choco Island 2 is one of those tracks that I find to be very overhated, since people hate it for being annoying, yet they say Toad's Turnpike is good for its challenge. That doesn't make any sense, and I think the chocolate ponds, and ramps are actually a thing that makes it stand out from the other SNES tracks since a lot of them are empty. Banshee Boardwalk has a sick ambiance, however I do think the track is slightly worst now that we can see the water. The cherry on top of the cake though is definitely Sky Garden, which is my favorite retro track in the ...more

This Lightning Cup is very underwhelming unfortauntely, contrary to the other ones we've seen throughout the series. As a last cup in the game you'd expect to have one heck of a ride but the order of courses and choices are so terrible. SNES Choco Island 2 is one of the worst Mario Kart tracks ever and it sure didn't get improved, rather the opposite because now the ramps are such an annoyance. The last course in the cup, GCN Yoshi Circuit not only was a terrible choice for last course because it's nothing close to epic, but it was so butchered and is so bland. What saves the cup slightly are N64 Banshee Boardwalk and GBA Sky Garden, which were fairly epic and great courses.

6 Mushroom Cup

Pretty much the worst nitro cup of the game in my opinion(let's be honest, the retro cups in Mario Kart DS are far from amazing, but it's cool that they exist). Figure 8 circuit gets my vote for the worst Mario Kart track of all time. No, the fact it's the first track is not a good excuse for being that empty. Yoshi Falls, is honestly very overhated, since it looks very good, and has great risk versus reward situations with the waterfalls that are a faster path but can make you fall off the track. I still think that it could have more though. Cheep Cheep Beach is just a beach, and a jungle which is pretty boring. At least Luigi's Mansion has an amazing atmosphere, and I especially love the moving trees.

This is a very unpopular opinion because most of the courses here are viewed as bad by the community with the other course being either really liked or not cared about. Figure 8-Circuit was flat out terrible but the rest of the cup is pretty excellent. Yoshi Falls is a calm but gorgeous oval with waterfalls, Cheep Cheep Beach is a very original beach track and Luigi's Mansion..., man that's one of my favourite tracks of all time. The athmosphere and course design are spectacular and the music is legendary. It got edged out by #1 though, the Flower Cup which had all courses great.

Unpopular opinion, Figure 8-Circuit is a cool track.

7 Banana Cup

Banana Cup is slightly better than the shell cup, but not by much. Frappe Snowland is cool (no pun intended) with all its snowmans. Bowser Castle 2 has a music that was clearly butchered from the original, but other than that it's intact, and it's okay overall. Sadly, Donut Plains 1 is very empty, and Baby Park is ridiculously short because of the shorter lap count from the original, and while in the original the craziness of the items made it fun, MK DS's less crazy item selection make it incredibly boring.

The Banana Cup is slightly better than its predecessor, the Shell Cup, but not by a very long shot. It starts off with two pretty good tracks. Well, SNES Donut Plains 1 is alright, while N64 Frappe Snowland is one of my favourite snow tracks in the series. But then it's followed by two abominations, GBA Bowser's Castle 2 and GCN Baby Park which are just so terrible. One has butchered music while the other barely has anything to offer. So #7 on my list.

Probably my least favorite cup of the game. Baby Park especially is painfully repetitive. The other tracks are kinda boring in my opinion.

8 Shell Cup

The Shell Cup for this game was probably one of the worst Mario Kart cups I've ever played through, right up there with SNES Flower Cup and GBA Mushroom Cup. It's such an underwhelming collection of tracks that are very poorly placed and makes this whole cup repetitive. Three of the courses are circuit tracks while the other is N64 Moo Moo Farm, which is one of my least favourite tracks ever. The Circuit tracks are SNES Mario Circuit 1, GBA Peach Circuit and GCN Luigi Circuit. The first two of these absolutely suck in my opinion, while the latter was a good track on the GCN, but it was butchererd so much in this game. Overall the worst cup in this game, at least.

So, in the shell cup we have two very empty track, and one track, being overrated for me because of how much people say it's better than Moo Moo Meadows, even though it only have some monty moles on the side of the track, while Moo Moo meadows has much more than that. At least they brought back Luigi Circuit from GCN, which is my favorite first track of any Mario Kart games, and unlike the other GCN track, it wasn't nerfed because of the limitation of the DS (besides graphics, but common!).

Some of the tracks are poor designed and bland.

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