Mario Kart 64

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Mario Kart 64
MK64 Cover.png
Developer(s) Nintendo EAD
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Nintendo 64, Virtual Console (Wii)
Release date Nintendo 64:
Japan December 14, 1996
USA February 10, 1997
Europe June 24, 1997
Australia June 24, 1997
China December 25, 2003 (iQue Player)
Virtual Console (Wii):
Europe January 26, 2007
Australia January 26, 2007
USA January 29, 2007
Japan January 30, 2007
South Korea April 26, 2008
Genre Racing
Rating(s)
ESRB:ESRB E.svg - Everyone
PEGI:PEGI 3.svg - Three years and older
CERO:CERO A.png - All ages
ACB:ACB G.svg - General
USK:USK 0.svg - All ages
Mode(s) 1-4 players simultaneous
Media
Nintendo 64:
Media N64 icon.png Cartridge
Wii:
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Input
Nintendo 64:
Wii:

Mario Kart 64 is the second installment of the Mario Kart series. This is also the first in the series to use three-dimensional graphics. It was released for the Nintendo 64, and later became available for the Wii's Virtual Console. It featured changes in playable characters, new courses, and was placed 4th in the 100th issue of Nintendo Power's "100 best Nintendo games of all time" in 1997.[1] Mario Kart 64 has set many trends which have continued on in the Mario Kart series and introduced courses such as Sherbet Land and Toad's Turnpike that were used again in future Mario Kart installments.

Gameplay[edit]

The game's title screen.
Luigi racing in Toad's Turnpike, after obtaining a Star.

Players must steer with the Nintendo 64's controller's control stick, holding A Button down to accelerate. B Button is used for braking, and also allows the players to reverse by pointing the control stick down. Items can be used by simply pressing the Z Button trigger. When players press the R Button trigger, they jump, allowing the kart to turn around tight corners. Turning too much or quickly, or turning side to side, results in a spinout, making the Kart stop for several seconds. If a Banana is hit while the player is driving straight, the character will skid for a while before spinning out. If the player presses the B Button button, a music note will appear over the character's head, nullifying the effect of the item (this effect is also included in Mario Kart: Super Circuit). This does not work all the time, however, because sometimes, the player can skid out immediately after driving into a banana if the banana is hit while turning.

As opposed to the previous game in the series, Super Mario Kart, a standard race now has three laps rather than five due to the much-longer raceways compared to those found in Super Mario Kart. Additionally, the race tracks have elevation and feature different forms of terrain. To get items, the character must get an Item Box. Once the character gets an Item Box, an item-roulette will appear with medium sound, and, when it stops, "dings". Players can press the item button during the roulette to stop the roulette early. Also unlike Super Mario Kart, Players have Infinitie Chances and can now try again as many times as they wish after they finish in 5th or below. This was removed in later games for unknown reasons.

There are four cups, designated as Mushroom Cup, Flower Cup, Star Cup, and Special Cup. These cups are further divided into three different difficulty settings of 50cc, 100cc, or 150cc. An unlockable Extra, known as Mirror Mode, allows players to race courses flipped vertically, which sometimes increases difficulty. In order to unlock this feature, players must win the Gold Cup on all the cups in 150cc. When the title screen changes, it means that the player has unlocked Extra. A Time Trial mode and a Battle Mode are also available, which pit players in different Kart scenarios that do not necessarily require racing.

In the Time Trial mode, players must race against their own previous times, represented by a Ghost of their player-of-choice.

Mario and Luigi battling each other in Battle Mode.

In Battle Mode, each player starts with three balloons and loses a balloon when hit by any item. It is also possible to lose a Balloon if a heavier player such as Bowser hits a lighter player like Toad or Yoshi with great enough speed (more details here). When a player has lost all Balloons, the player loses and becomes a Bomb Kart. The last surviving player wins the round.

The rival system in this game is the more common 2 Rival system seen in most similar games, whereupon two randomly selected rivals will fight with the player, and will use the "Handicap" feature to situate themselves on level with the player. They will always stay on the same, no matter what the championship standings are.

On a side note, when the player plays the 150cc and Extra mode, two random CPU racers may receive a huge handicap, and even when hit with an item such as a Red Shell, they will recover rapidly. Sometimes there is also one player that receives an even larger handicap and when ahead, it is almost impossible to stop the player without cheating.

Button controls[edit]

Nintendo 64[edit]

  • A Button - Accelerate, Rocket Start
  • B Button - Brake
  • Camera up Button - Zoom In/Out
  • Camera left Button/Camera right Button - Switch screen positions
  • Camera down Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • START Button - Select option during the Menus/Pause or resume during gameplay
  • Z Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • R Button - Drift
  • L Button - Lower music volume
  • Control Stick - Steer
  • +Control Pad - change option during the Menus

Wii Virtual Console[edit]

Classic controller[edit]
  • Classic Controller a Button - Accelerate, Rocket Start
  • Classic Controller b Button - Brake
  • Classic Controller y Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • Classic Controller x Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • +Control Pad - change options during the Menus
  • Classic Controller Left Control Stick - Steer
  • Classic Controller Right Control Stick up - Zoom In/Out
  • Classic Controller Right Control Stick left/right - switch screen positions
  • Classic Controller Right Control Stick down - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • Classic Controller L Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • Classic Controller R Button - Drift
  • Plus Button - Pause/Resume during gameplay
  • Classic Controller ZL Button - Lower music volume
GameCube controller[edit]
  • A Button - Accelerate, Rocket Start
  • B Button - Brake
  • Camera stick up - Zoom In/Out
  • Camera stick left/right - Switch screen positions
  • Camera stick down - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • START/PAUSE Button - Pause/Resume during game play
  • X Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • Y Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • Z Button - Lower music volume
  • R Button - Drift
  • L Button - Use items, stop Item Roulette
  • Control Stick - Steer
  • +Control Pad - Change options during the Menus.

Technical[edit]

The original release of this game on the Nintendo 64 used 123 pages of the Controller Pak to record Ghost Data, which would occupy all the space in the Controller Pak. However, later versions of the game used 121 pages on the Controller Pak, leaving only 2 pages free.

Because none of the available controllers have a Controller Pak Slot, it is impossible to record Ghost Data on the Virtual Console version of the game.

Drivers[edit]

Characters are divided into three classes depending on their weight: Light, Medium, and Heavy.

* indicates that the character is a New Driver for the Mario Kart installments overall.

Lightweight drivers have the highest acceleration and highest top speed. Additionally, only Lightweights (and the heavyweight character Bowser) can use the triple-gas acceleration recovery technique (tapping the gas button three times and then holding to accelerate more quickly). The single downside to lightweight characters is that they can spin out from contact with heavier characters.

Middleweight drivers actually have the slowest acceleration of all the weight classes and have the same top speed as the heavyweights.

Heavyweight drivers have a slower acceleration than the lightweights, but faster acceleration than the middleweights and share the same top speed as the middleweights. Unlike Wario and Luigi, Bowser (in addition to the lightweight characters) can use the triple-gas recovery technique. Heavyweight characters can make lighter drivers spin out through contact.

Analysis and Tiering of the above weight categories is demonstrated in the this video.

  • Additionally, players can drive a Mini Bomb Kart when all their balloons disappear in battle mode. The Mini Bomb Kart can drive around and explode on other players, but it only has one use for exploding before completely disappearing.

Enemies[edit]

Non-Playable[edit]

Obstacles[edit]

Courses[edit]

Race courses[edit]

Battle stages[edit]

Items[edit]

* - Can be used multiple times.
X - Do not appear in the Battle Mode.

References to other games[edit]

  • Super Mario 64 - In the track Royal Raceway, there is a part where the racer can turn off the road and arrive at Princess Peach's Castle exactly as it appeared in this game. It is also where the award ceremony is held.
  • Donkey Kong Country - This is the first appearance of the Donkey Kong Country version of Donkey Kong in the main Mario franchise.

References in later games[edit]

Awards[edit]

  • Longest Track in the Mario Kart Series - Rainbow Road - Guinness Book of World Records Gamers Edition 2009 - 2013

Media[edit]

For a complete list of media for this subject, see List of Mario Kart 64 media.
Audio.png Circuits & Wario Stadium - The music for Luigi Raceway, Mario Raceway, Wario Stadium and Royal Raceway
N64 Luigi Raceway.ogg
2:49
File info
Audio.png Choco Mountain - The music for Choco Mountain, Block Fort and Double Deck
N64 Choco Mountain.ogg
3:12
File info
Audio.png Staff Roll - The music for the credits
Staff Roll Mario Kart 64.ogg
2:47
File info
Having trouble playing?

Staff[edit]

Main article: List of Mario Kart 64 staff

Executive Producer[edit]

Producer[edit]

Director[edit]

  • Hideki Konno

Music Composer[edit]

Beta elements[edit]

Main article: List of Mario Kart 64 beta elements

Kamek was originally intended to be one of the playable characters, but ended up being replaced by Donkey Kong. The Character Select screen was also different, the characters faced the player, and Kamek can be seen in Donkey Kong's space. The working title of this game was Super Mario Kart R. Boos from Banshee Boardwalk also had a different look, the HUD was different from the final version, and item boxes were also completely black with colored question marks on them. The Cape Feather, which was in Super Mario Kart, was also intended to be included, as seen in a certain screenshot of Super Mario Kart R. This particular screenshot can been seen on the back of the packaging of the Nintendo 64 system.

Glitches[edit]

Main article: List of glitches in Mario Kart 64

Bounce Over the Wall[edit]

This glitch works in any mode with any player on Wario Stadium. On the first hill after the start of the race, the player should drive into the wall, they should be able to bounce over it. Next, they should do a 180 degree turn and aim for the starting pole (the player is over the wall so it may be hard to see it depending on how well the Nintendo 64 or Wii works). The player should hop over the wall again and make sure to land to the right of the starting line. Once the player crosses the starting line after they regain control of their kart, Lakitu should hold the second or Final lap sign, depending on which lap the player was on previously, or he will wave the checkered flag, if the race is finished.


Freeze Glitch[edit]

To perform this glitch start a battle on Double Deck. The player must then park one of the characters over an Item Box and make sure that the character doesn't receive a Boo or Star. Then have the other character(s) loose their balloons. On the Battle Ranking screen, keep pressing Z on the controller for the character that is on the item box. Eventually the game will freeze with the music still playing.

Gallery[edit]

For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Mario Kart 64.

Name in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese マリオカート64
Mario Kāto 64
Mario Kart 64
Korean 마리오 카트 64
Mario Kateu 64
Mario Kart 64
Chinese 马力欧卡丁车
Mǎlìōu Kǎdīngchē
Mario Karting Car

Trivia[edit]

  • The lightning effect was changed in the release on the Virtual Console to a less intense flash, most likely to prevent seizures.
  • In the English version of Mario Kart 64, "Circuits" were renamed "Raceways". The exception is Royal Raceway, which was known as Peach Circuit in Japan instead of Royal Circuit.
  • In the Japanese version, Luigi, Toad, Peach, and Wario have different voice overs than their American counterparts, while other characters do not. The Japanese voice overs were used in the first two Mario Party games and Mario Kart: Super Circuit. Also, Toad, Donkey Kong, and Bowser are referred to as Kinopio, D. Kong, and Koopa.
  • When playing VS or Battle Mode with 3 or more players, the selected track will not play the music of it.
  • Unlike the North American release, Mario is not the announcer in the Japanese release. Instead, a group of Japanese children's voices shout "Mario-Kato!" in the title screen and during the end credits while an American sounding announcer is used for the main menu, the selection screens, and the winning ceremony. However, when the end credits conclude, Mario announces "Hey! You're very good! See you next time!" just like in the North American release.
  • If the results screen is left on for 50 minutes (64 loops), a hidden section of the tune starts playing twice, before reverting to the original tune.[2]
  • In the Animal Crossing series, there is an unlockable item called "star man" which plays the Mario Kart 64 star theme when placed in a room.
  • This is one of the two games that marks the first time, Luigi, Yoshi, Donkey Kong, and Wario receive a revamped appearance from the original hand-drawn era to the N64 3-D art direction of the Mario franchise, the other being Super Mario 64.
  • This game currently has the most featured tracks in Retro Courses (15), the only to not appear in any other game is Wario Stadium.
  • Mario Kart 64 is the only Mario Kart game outside of Japan to not have at least one track named 'Mario Circuit'.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.gamekult.com/communaute/forum/voirmessage.html?foid=13000909, retrieved 6/4/2009
  2. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iqqsewbj5Qw