Well, Kart Rider, the wildly successful Korean MMOG, has arrived in the USA. The game is usually held up as THE micropayment success story. I don’t have any idea how well it’ll work in the US, but I just played for an hour or so, and there were plenty of opponents with plenty of upgrades.
The game is very simple, and the tutorial has the flattest learning curve I’ve seen in a while, so I’m sure I was playing against 9yo opponents (that kicked my ass, thank you very much).
The racing aspect…is most interesting to me, ’cause I’m working on a racing game of my own right now. Kart Racer’s game is usually about tight, technical racing; the line and the apex win races.
Unless you play an item race. THEN it’s chaos, as rockets, banana peels, and other colorful things continually rearrange the order.
Of course, you can pay real money for boosts, which don’t really count in the chaos of an item race, but totally tip the balance of a "speed race" (no items on the track).