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Kalimari Desert is a race course in Mario Kart 64. It is the fourth and final race of the Mushroom Cup. The name of the course is a pun of the real life desert, Kalahari, in Southern Africa, as well as Calamari.
The race starts out next to a large cliff formation, upon the first turn racers see how empty the desert really is. At the end of the turn the racers encounter the train for the first time. After passing the tracks the players race alongside the track of the train (though it is in a cave and not visible) eventually running into it a second time. After this encounter the racers race along the edge of the map and eventually advance back to the finish line.
If the player drives over the sand, their kart will move slower, and if they enter the darker portion of the sand, Lakitu will pull them out, as it is an out-of-bounds area.
Mario Kart 64
The course's most notable feature is the two trains that go through a mesa. The trains constantly move around the track, often crossing through the racers' path. Depending on what mode is being played, the trains may or may not have coaches attached to it. If the player runs into one of them, the player will be thrown in the air. It is possible to drive on the train's track, however this costs the racer time. It is possible, but very difficult, to cross the train track while the train is there by driving through the gap between the coaches. If a player travels through the train tunnel, the player typically bypasses the finish line, not moving on to the next lap as the other racers. However, if the player has a Star and activates it just before entering the tunnel, the player moves on to the next lap, effectively shortcutting ahead of the others. This trick only works during the first two laps.
Instruction manual description
The trick is to time it so that the steam locomotive that crosses the course won't block you. If the train is crossing in front of you, you should temporarily stop. It's very dangerous to enter the train tunnel, even if it is a shortcut...
Mario Kart 7
Kalimari Desert returns as the first course of the Leaf Cup of Mario Kart 7. There are now two shortcut ramps near the end of the first corner and before the third corner of the track to accommodate the new gliding feature, allowing racers to glide over the trains. The players can also use mushrooms to gain easy access to these ramps. Several wooden ramps also litter the inside and outside of the track, and as always, can be tricked to gain a small boost. However, the train tunnel can no longer be entered because it is now an out-of-bounds area, making the lap glitch impossible in this game. The trains are also shorter: they have three wagons while they had five in the original version of the track, and they now seem to ride more slowly.
Much like in Mario Kart 64, two trains are present, but only one train is present when doing online multiplayer races.
In this game, the mini-map of this course does not show the path of the train track while in Mario Kart 64, it did.
Mario Kart 64
Mario Kart 7
Names in other languages