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Video Games

Nintendo to close Mario Kart TV website

Players will no longer be able to watch Mario Kart 8 races on the website, but YouTube functionality remains.

Mario Kart TV, a website that serves as an online portal for Mario Kart 8 players to upload and watch their races, will be closed. Nintendo announced on the website that it will cease to operate on April 4, but notes that replays can still be viewed in-game and via YouTube uploads.

"The Mario Kart TV website, which lets you watch highlight videos posted from Mario Kart 8, will be closing down as of 11:00 PM PT on Monday, April 4th 2016," it explained. "We are very thankful to the many people who have used this website since it launched in 2014.

"Even after the website shuts down, it will still be possible to watch Mario Kart TV and upload highlights from within Mario Kart 8 itself. Highlight videos uploaded to YouTube from the game will not be deleted after the website shuts down."

Mario Kart 8 was released in May 2014 and sold 2 million units worldwide in under a month. The game was cited as a key driver of Wii U console sales and represented Nintendo's efforts to adopt a number of features that it had traditionally been considered as falling behind on.

These include supporting games with post-launch content (Mario Kart 8 has been updated with new tracks and racers), a more reliable online multiplayer infrastructure and gameplay archiving through services such as YouTube and Mario Kart TV.

Nintendo's next console, codenamed NX, was first announced in March. Nintendo plans to talk more about its mysterious NX console ater in 2016. It's rumored to be a console/mobile hybrid that uses "industry-leading" tech.

In the meantime, Nintendo is preparing to launch a new online account service in Japan. Registration has opened and, as announced previously, this cross-platform service will tie together Nintendo's console, PC and mobile efforts.

It uses "a cloud-based data service to transfer game data between mobile games and console games."

The first of Nintendo's smartphone games, Miitomo, will arrive in March 2016 and make use of the Nintendo Account. Previously, the Miitomo game was expected to launch before the end of the year, but Nintendo delayed this to better market the game.