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The sequel to ''VideoGame/MarioKartDoubleDash'', ''Mario Kart DS'' is a racing game for the NintendoDS, released in 2005. It is the second handheld ''VideoGame/MarioKart'' game following ''Mario Kart: Super Circuit''. It introduced online multiplayer features via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. This game features a mission mode and introduces two new items in the form of Bullet Bill (capable of turning the user into said mook going maximum throttle on autopilot) and Blooper (capable of blocking opponents' views with black ink). Plus, the "two characters per kart" feature from ''Double Dash!!'' has been dropped, returning it to one driver per vehicle system as with every installment before ''Double Dash!!''.
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!!The game features examples of these tropes:

* AlwaysNight
** Luigi's Mansion, which returned in ''Mario Kart 7''.
** Wario Stadium, which has been set in the daytime when it reappeared in ''Mario Kart 8''.
** Frappe Snowland and Banshee Boardwalk from ''VideoGame/MarioKart64''.
* ArtificialBrilliance: In this game's Rainbow Road, the AI actually seems to know that if it puts a banana peel or fake item box on the loop-the-loop or the corkscrew, there's no chance to survive.
* {{Ascended Extra}}s: Shy Guy was promoted from a character used only in this game's Download Play Mode to a fully-playable character in ''Mario Kart 7'' and ''8''. Wiggler was originally one of this game's bosses and has been an obstacle on Maple Treeway in ''Mario Kart Wii'' before [[YourSizeMayVary he finally shrunk down and become playable]] in ''Mario Kart 7''.
* BubblyClouds: Sky Garden, returning from ''Super Circuit''.
* CarFu: The battle modes as usual. Boss battles in this game also qualify.
* ChestInsignia: From this game onwards, the ''Mario Kart'' series itself does a vehicle variant of this, with each kart having two or three places on it for the driver's personal emblem. Each playable character has their own icon (for instance, Mario's trademark red "M").
** Just for this game, players can also design their own custom symbol, although the custom icons were removed in all later games due to the staggering number of crude and/or offensive images people created.
* ConsoleCameo: One of the battle courses take place on a huge Nintendo DS system floating in space.
* CoolBike: Waluigi's Zipper is the only motorcycle of this game. However, ''Wii'' and ''8'' has a full dosage on that type of vehicle.
* DemotedToExtra: Baby Park returned from ''Double Dash!!'' despite no baby characters being playable.
* DummiedOut: This game had several unused tracks. Some were merely for testing, such as ones that actually have "test" in the filename and one that is simply an early version of Wario Stadium, but others include Double Dash!!'s Mario Circuit, a Koopa Troopa track, a variant of DK Pass without snow, and an unused pinball track.
* DumpStat: Drift and weight can be affected by this trope. Due to the exploit of snaking, it was actually beneficial to have LESS drift since if you had more, you'd be turning too sharply while power sliding on straightaways. The same is said for weight since it's combined with the "offroad" stat. The less weight you had, the faster you could go off road such as in grass or dirt. Plus, bumping into other players had no effect online. The item stat was also pretty useless, especially online where you couldn't get triple items. It was good for some courses during time trials though, as you got more mushrooms to take shortcuts.
* EmbeddedPrecursor: The retro grand prix, which is a recurring tradition from this game onwards. Besides the four Nitro cups (Mushroom, Flower, Star, and Special) are the four Retro cups (Shell, Banana, Leaf, and Lightning). In ''DS'', each retro cup features a ''VideoGame/SuperMarioKart'' track, a ''VideoGame/MarioKart64 track'', a ''VideoGame/MarioKartSuperCircuit'' track, and ending with a ''VideoGame/MarioKartDoubleDash'' track in that order.
** Lightning Cup, on the other hand, once have four out of 20 courses introduced in ''Super Circuit'' [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome before it got absent in]] ''Double Dash!!'' [[TheBusCameBack When said cup returned in this game]], its skill level bumped from medium (Flower/Star Cup wise) to traditionally "Special high".[[note]]Special, in this sense, as in Special Cup[[/note]]
* EternalEngine: Tick Tock Clock, which returned in ''8''.
* EverythingsBetterWithCows: [=N64=] Moo Moo Farm.
* FinalBoss: Chief Chilly. [[spoiler:Although he's TheDragon to the [[TrueFinalBoss Wiggler]] himself.]]
* [[GuestFighter Guest Driver]]: R.O.B.
* InterfaceScrew: Blooper, the ''Mario''-universe squid, has been an item since this game, covering your opponents' screens in black ink, obscuring their forward view (this is also visible by painting the entire vehicle/driver black). It even has an effect on the AI, causing them to swerve and slow down a notch when it's in effect. The ink can be removed early by hitting a booster while it's in effect. There's also the cake frosting when you bump into giant whipped toppings at Tart Top.
* KidAppealCharacter: The only one here is Toad, like he did in the first three ''Mario Kart'' games.
* LevelMapDisplay: Look at the bottom screen.
* LimitedAnimation: Only your character with full animations while everyone else on your screen are stiff (and they're even rendered with less polygons to boot). This was most likely done to prevent the system from being taxed and keep things running smoothly. This strategy repeated in ''7''.
* {{Musical Nod}}s:
** This game's title theme contains part of that from ''Double Dash!!''. ''Wii'' did the same thing ''DS'' did before.
** The game's nitro Bowser Castle had an OminousPipeOrgan like the one ''Double Dash!!'' Bowser's Castle had.
* {{Mythology Gag}}s:
** The nitro Mario Circuit of this game isn't the only Mario Circuit to be part of the Star Cup. [[VideoGame/SuperMarioKart Remember Mario Circuit 4?]]
** Before it became the third course of this game's Lightning Cup, Sky Garden was originally the second course of the same cup in ''Super Circuit''.
* {{Nerf}}:
** The map feature of this game can show active course hazards like Bullet Bills or Goombas so the Blooper item could be less dangerous if you had relied on reading the map in this game.
** Baby Park's lap count has been reduced from 7 to 5.
* NoFairCheating: If you use a cheating device to unlock all the characters and vehicles, [[spoiler:you will unlock everything... except R.O.B. (Though strangely, you unlock his karts)]]
* NostalgiaLevel: This game and all Mario Kart games thereafter traditionally featured retro courses, whether race tracks or battle tracks.
* OneStatToRuleThemAll: Acceleration, like it did in ''Double Dash!!''
* [[OutrunTheFireball Outrun the Spiny Shell]]: It's possible to do so.
* PinballZone: Waluigi Pinball, which returned in ''7''. This track is also notable for its unique feature of having sound effects replaced with 8-bit pinball-sounding ones.
* RankInflation: If an A rank is not enough for you, try to get 1, 2, or 3 stars.
* {{Retcon}}: Peach and Yoshi returned to light weight from their middle weight status in ''Double Dash!!''[[note]] since this game's default roster was based on ''Mario Kart 64'''s, where Peach and Yoshi were lightweights[[/note]] before becoming middle weight again in ''Wii''. Waluigi is a JackOfAllStats here like he was in ''Double Dash!!'', before he was made heavy in ''Wii'' and ''8''.
* SlippySlideyIceWorld: DK Pass as well as [=N64=] Frappe Snowland.
* SpritePolygonMix: All items apart from the Fake Item Box and Shiny Blue Shell are sprites. In addition, a few course hazards are also sprites.
* SuperTitle64Advance: The game itself plays straight.
** An aversion exists in the form of having the Nintendo systems' initials at the beginning of the retro course names (for instance, Mario Circuit 1 from ''Super Mario Kart'' being called [=SNES=] Mario Circuit 1).