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Teens play Mario Kart 64 and prove Nintendo is forever

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The React YouTube Channel likes to pit teenagers of today against the games many of us old farts grew up with, and this episode features the still-amazing Mario Kart 64.

It's also really fascinating to see how much Nintendo does right to make sure its games successfully cut across the generation lines. "How do you not know what a star does?" one of the participants asks another, and it's a good point.

The star power-up does basically the same thing in every Nintendo game; if you've played any of the Mario games or their spin-offs on any of these systems you have likely already learned much of the vocabulary needed to play Mario Kart. Almost all the teens have played some flavor of Mario Kart before, even if they may have started on the GameCube version of the game.

That being said, it's still frustrating to watch one of the kids complain about not receiving any mushrooms when his kart is being circled by three red shells. C'mon!

There's no thrill here in watching younger folk become completely lost during a game we know well, because Mario Kart has been around for so long and has appeared on so many systems it would be nearly impossible to find anyone in the United States who doesn't at least have a passing familiarity with it.

Heck, you can see the teens having fun, despite a few complaints about the oddly-shaped controllers and the now-clunky graphics. You could throw this game into a sleepover filled with young children and they would have a good time, and I expect you would get the same reaction leaving Mario Kart 64 hooked up in a college dorm.

This may not be as funny as past videos in the series, but it does help teach us why Nintendo has stuck around for so long. Consistency of design, familiar characters and mechanics and a business-like focus on making sure the games are enjoyable for anyone who picks them up. Even teenagers.