It seems like a childhood dream come true. When you open Mario Kart Home Circuit, you can finally play Mario Kart in real life, or at least in your home with an RC car.
The box promises that you can translate the Mario Kart experience almost flawlessly to your living room; so long as you avoid carpets, rugs, mud, and other uneven surfaces. However, when you turn it on, you might find that the experience is quite ...choppy. The feed on your Switch is stuttering, it's skipping frames and the kart´s response is sluggish.
It´s almost as if you were experiencing lag, but Home Circuit is not an online title, but an Augmented Reality game, so you aren´t online. But if you aren´t online, why is it happening?
Why is Mario Kart Home Circuit choppy or laggy?
While Mario Kart Home Circuit uses your Wi-Fi, it doesn´t use the internet. The RC car is connected to your Switch by the wireless network, but it doesn´t access any external servers to do so. So what´s happening here?
Well, if you a Nintendo Switch Lite and are worried that this is a hardware issue, don´t be. It's a common problem regardless of which version of the Switch you own.
The simple explanation is range. The Kart only works when it´s closer than 15 feet (or 5 meters) to the Nintendo Switch. Play further than that, the connection will become unstable and the experience will suffer. The little kart simply doesn´t have much "power" to broadcast its signal, to begin with.
If you are sure that you are playing in the recommended distance, but the problem persists, you might also be getting wireless interference. We already touched on the topic in our two articles about input lag and how to improve mic sound quality, but your connection might be getting interference from other wi-fi signals and even other wireless broadcasts.
This is typical for people living in a cluttered home, surrounded by Smart TVs, computers, and the such. Same if everyone is trying to use the Wi-fi at the same time, regardless of how much "internet" they are consuming. The RC kart wireless signal might be getting drowned in the wireless noise.
However, there is one last explanation, and that´s that the signal is getting blocked by solid objects. Playing behind walls and heavy furniture might cause the connection to become choppy. It´s recommended to at least maintain a line of sight with the real kart while you play so that nothing comes in between the signal.
How do I fix the connection in Mario Kart Live Home Circuit?
The easiest way to try and improve your choppy connection is to try and play in near proximity to the kart.
If you are playing on TV mode, unplug your Switch from the dock and move closer to the circuit. Make sure that even at its farthest points, the track is no more than five meters (fifteen feet) away from the Nintendo Switch.
Don´t try to build circuits around large obstacles like water tanks, TVs, and generally any large, metallic object. You want to make sure that there is nothing between your Switch and the Kart that can block the signal.
Also, avoid building circuits outside the room or behind walls. If that´s not possible, then try to follow the kart around so that it´s always within your line of sight.
If you still have a rocky connection with your kart, then it might be a Wi-fi problem. Don´t play near other wifi devices, wireless speakers, or wireless access points, put your phone (along with any laptop or tablet) away from both the Switch and the Kart.
Additionally, if you live with a lot of other people, try to play when they aren´t using the wi-fi so that your Switch doesn´t have to compete with them for the routers' attention.
And that´s it! Hopefully, this article has been helpful to you. You can check out more accessories for the Switch over here. Do you also own a Nintendo Labo? then learn which games work with the Toy-cons on this article.