A bunch of engineers at Austin's Park in Texas wanted to figure out if they could put their nerd knowledge to good use and jury-rig an ordinary go-kart game to follow the rules of Mario Kart, complete with power-ups. That meant they had to alter the kart mechanics so that, for example, the brakes would fail if someone lobbed a turtle shell at your face. And you know what? They pulled it off.
If this isn't the new national sport inside a decade, we don't know America.
By installing RFID (radio frequency identification) chips into a bunch of plush power-ups and some ordinary go-karts, they managed to program the karts to respond to making contact with certain items. So, just like the game, you collect a power-up from a floating box ...
... and drop a banana peel to watch your opponent's brakes fail ...
The digital version of those yellow bastards ruined more fraternal relationships than the American Civil War.
... fire a turtle shell out of a built-in cannon to lock the steering and brakes of an opponent ...
Or their head. Probably their head.
... or pick up a golden star to give your kart a boost of speed:
"Ow! Was that ... a syringe full of meth?"
Unfortunately, this was a one-time project, and they haven't put their gadgetry into use in the form of a real-life Mario Kart park we can all enjoy (because they have something against becoming instant billionaires, we guess?). Still, we're holding out hope.
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