Tie-up with Nintendo’s racing hit has T-shirt and power-up hoodies.

As Japan’s most popular casual clothing brand, Uniqlo has had plenty of tie-ups with popular anime properties, partnering with both Sailor Moon and Your Name/Weathering with You director Makoto Shinkai. But Uniqlo’s love for Japanese pop culture goes beyond animation and into the world of video games too, and its newest collaboration is with Nintendo.

Of course, considering that Nintendo has created enough iconic characters to fill an entire store of its own with merchandise, Uniqlo had to narrow the list down a bit for this new T-shirt and hoodie line, so the focus for the collection is specifically the Mario Kart franchise.

Officially called Mario Kart Friendship, the complete lineup consists of six short-sleeved tees and four long-sleeved hooded sweatshirts. While the Mario Kart roster has ballooned over the past two decades with an expanding number of new additions and guest racers, the spotlight primarily shines on the eight motorsports competitors from the original 1992 Super NES game: Mario, Toad, Yoshio, Bowser, Peach, Donkey Kong, Koopa Troopa, and Luigi.

▼ The ever-crafty Wario does manage to sneak onto this hoodie, though.

As always, Uniqlo’s designers have gone the extra mile, adding little quirks that go beyond just slapping some character art about willy-nilly. Especially clever is this design, with Mario getting hoisted out of a pool of water

…by cloud-riding Lakitu!

▼ The original game’s bad-guy trio race across the wearer’s chest.

▼ Overseas fans might be a little confused by the text declaring “Kinopio runs to win!”, but Toad is just one of many Mario characters who has a completely different name in Japan.

And finally, since putting a hood on a sweatshirt is pretty much giving it a power-up, most of the hoodies feature the games’ weapon items.

▼ Mario and red shells

▼ Yoshi and banana peels

▼ Bowser and a whole world of hurt

The Mairo Kart Friendship lineup pulls into Uniqlo stores on December 23, with the T-shirts priced at just 790 yen (US$7.30) and the sweatshirts 1,990 yen. Unfortunately, they’re only being offered in kids’ sizes, but they still offer you the chance to bask in the glory of being a hero to your son, daughter, niece, or nephew with some last-minute Christmas shopping, and if you need something for your adult self as well, there’s always Uniqlo’s grown-up-size Dragon Ball line, as well as its surprisingly sexy thermal one-piece.

Source, images: Uniqlo
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