Clash of Karts, a new TV program focused as a one-off competition in Mario Kart 8, will premiere on Disney XD this week on December 5, 8pm local time.
Lasting one hour and numerous races, the competition will feature eight of “America’s best young gamers” racing amongst various YouTube stars like Andre, Strawburry 17 and SethBling in front of a live audience. The announcement by Nintendo surprised many, despite the company’s efforts to expand beyond home and handheld systems. Disney XD is a natural choice as a venue given their airing of the Nintendo World Championships earlier this year at E3.
The eSports scene continues to grow and more are wanting a slice of the pie. An interview between Fortune Magazine and Disney XD senior vice president Mark Buhaj brought to light the popularity of the championship and how it has encouraged Disney and Nintendo to get their feet wet in this still-young market.
According to Buhaj, “eSports is something that’s blossoming, but it’s still early days. How it’ll be covered for the kids’ audience is still something that remains to be seen.” He also added that Mario Kart 8 was chosen due to its wide, generational appeal, ease of use yet requiring skill and an element of comedy and lightheartedness that tempers the usual drama that comes with eSports.
He isn’t wrong; the game resides as the top-selling Wii U game with a record 5.87 million units sold.
Alongside Clash of Karts, Disney XD has other various video gaming media such as The Gamer’s Guide to Almost Anything and Gaming Show (In My Parents’ Garage). TBS has joined in by establishing a weekly gaming league with the focus being on Counter-Strike. For fans and participants of eSports, it’s an exciting time to be alive.