Rival

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It has been requested that this article be rewritten and expanded to include more information.

The rival[1] system is a recurring mechanic in the Mario Kart series where one or more computer-controlled opponents are given a massive advantage to ensure the point standings in the tournament grid are always close. Some implementations of the system may also dictate the rank order of the entire grid and not just the CPU closest to the player. It is usually enforced through rubber band AI, a racing game convention where opponents get a speed boost (often beyond what the ingame statistics for the character would allow) when they fall too far behind the player. Rival characters may be given other advantages such as recovering faster from hits and getting better item probability.

History[edit]

Super Mario Kart[edit]

The rivals always finish in a particular order. In this case, though, Princess got a lower spot than normal.

In Super Mario Kart, rivals contain one very fast driver, one fast driver, one medium driver, one slow driver and three very slow drivers. It is notable that when one of the three slowest drivers gets hit, that kart will keep its place, while when one of the faster cars gets shot, it will usually resume its previous place very quickly unless unable to catch up fast enough before the race ends. For this reason, the drivers (except the human racer) will (if unaffected) always finish in the exact same order. Also, if the player tries to hit an opponent, the opponent jumps over the item a majority of the time. Also, the rivals are not determined in pairs, so that even if Donkey Kong Jr. is Mario's rival, Mario will not be Donkey Kong Jr.'s rival, as shown in the table below.

The rivals for each driver are always the same, the list will be in the order the line up for the first race. It is possible to change the order if the rivals can't recover their place at the end (for example, if someone is playing as Luigi and Yoshi finishes last, Yoshi will then become one of the three slower drivers while everybody takes the next position up). It happens mostly on 100cc and 150cc.

The rivals are determined by the current points standing, meaning that if Yoshi was still only second to the player, he will boost back to first position from the start.

Character Rival Order
Very Fast Fast Medium Slow Very Slow
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
BowserSMK.png
Bowser
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
SMKToadSprite.png
Toad
SMKPrincessSprite.png
Princess
SMK Donkey Kong Jr Sprite.png
Donkey Kong Jr.
SMKMarioSprite.png
Mario
SMKYoshiSprite.png
Yoshi
SMKLuigiSprite.png
Luigi
SMKKoopaTroopaSprite.png
Koopa Troopa
BowserSMK.png
Bowser

Mario Kart 64[edit]

Mario head smaller.png This section is a stub. You can help the Super Mario Wiki by expanding it.

Mario Kart 64 and most of the subsequent installments (beside Mario Kart: Super Circuit) until Mario Kart 7 employ a simpler variation where one or two random opponents are selected at the start of a tournament to be of much greater skill than the other racers. Rival racers have strong rubberband AI.

Mario Kart: Super Circuit[edit]

Mario Kart: Super Circuit features a preset order of CPU opponents from slowest to fastest exists for each character in Grand Prix mode. In Quick Run mode, the orders are reversed, except in the first track of each cup. When playing Grand Prix in multiplayer, the rival order depends on the first player's character.

Player Fastest CPU 2nd Fastest 3rd Fastest 4th Fastest 3rd Slowest 2nd Slowest Slowest CPU
Mario Donkey Kong Bowser Luigi Yoshi Peach Toad Wario
Luigi Wario Toad Yoshi Mario Peach Donkey Kong Bowser
Peach Luigi Bowser Donkey Kong Yoshi Mario Toad Wario
Toad Peach Luigi Yoshi Mario Wario Donkey Kong Bowser
Yoshi Peach Luigi Toad Mario Wario Donkey Kong Bowser
Donkey Kong Yoshi Bowser Toad Luigi Peach Mario Wario
Wario Bowser Donkey Kong Yoshi Mario Luigi Peach Toad
Bowser Donkey Kong Peach Mario Yoshi Toad Luigi Wario

Mario Kart 7[edit]

Mario Kart 7 returns to a system similar to Super Mario Kart, although more simple as two characters are set instead of single characters followed by another single character, etc..

Each character's rivals will never change; for example, Bowser will always appear in a Grand Prix if the player is playing as Mario. However, if a set character is supposed to be unlockable, the set character is replaced by a default character until the unlockable character can be used. That will make the default character a third rival that occasionally appears in the race. The only exception to this is Wario, who does not have a third rival due to both of his main rivals being starting characters.

Character Rivals Third Rival
MarioMKW.png MetalMarioIcon-MK7.pngBowserMKW.png PeachMKW.png
LuigiMKW.png DaisyMKW.png MarioMKW.png MKW Yoshi Icon.png
PeachMKW.png LakituIcon-MK7.png DonkeyKongMKW.png ToadMKW.png
MKW Yoshi Icon.png WigglerIcon-MK7.png ToadMKW.png DonkeyKongMKW.png
BowserMKW.png MarioMKW.png RosalinaMKW.png LuigiMKW.png
DonkeyKongMKW.png WarioMKW.png KoopaTroopa-MKWii-Icon.png BowserMKW.png
ToadMKW.png RosalinaMKW.png PeachMKW.png KoopaTroopa-MKWii-Icon.png
KoopaTroopa-MKWii-Icon.png MKW Yoshi Icon.png ShyGuyIcon-MK7.png LuigiMKW.png
DaisyMKW.png PeachMKW.png WarioMKW.png LuigiMKW.png
WarioMKW.png LuigiMKW.png MarioMKW.png None
RosalinaMKW.png QueenBeeIcon-MK7.png PeachMKW.png ToadMKW.png
MetalMarioIcon-MK7.png BowserMKW.png RosalinaMKW.png MarioMKW.png
ShyGuyIcon-MK7.png ToadMKW.png LakituIcon-MK7.png KoopaTroopa-MKWii-Icon.png
QueenBeeIcon-MK7.png KoopaTroopa-MKWii-Icon.png MetalMarioIcon-MK7.png MKW Yoshi Icon.png
WigglerIcon-MK7.png ShyGuyIcon-MK7.png MKW Yoshi Icon.png BowserMKW.png
LakituIcon-MK7.png DonkeyKongMKW.png QueenBeeIcon-MK7.png MarioMKW.png
Mii MK8.png BowserMKW.pngMetalMarioIcon-MK7.png MarioMKW.png

Mario Kart 8 / Mario Kart 8 Deluxe[edit]

Mario Kart 8 uses a Rival system similar to its predecessor, with several alterations. A set rival system is present only in the Grand Prix mode of the game; all other modes, including single player VS and battle are not affected and have randomized CPU opponents. Furthermore, only the original characters from the E3 build of the game receive a set system of rivals (Mario, Luigi, Peach, Daisy, Yoshi, Wario, Donkey Kong, Bowser, Koopa Troopa, Waluigi, Toad, and Toadette). The rest of the playable characters do not have a rival system of any sort, and all of their opponents in any modes are randomized. If there is more than one player participating in a Grand Prix, the first player's character determines whether there is a rival system or not, and what specific rivals the game gives the character. If other players choose the rival characters, the rivals are replaced by another, random character.

Player Opponent(s) Player Opponent(s) Player Opponent(s)
MK8 Mario Icon.png PeachMK8 Bowser Icon.png MK8 Yoshi Icon.png MK8 Toad Icon.pngMK8 DKong Icon.png MK8 Bowser Icon.png MK8 Mario Icon.pngMK8 Luigi Icon.png
MK8 Luigi Icon.png MK8 Mario Icon.pngDaisy MK8 Toad Icon.png MK8 Koopa Icon.pngMK8 Waluigi Icon.png MK8 DKong Icon.png MK8 Bowser Icon.pngMK8 Wario Icon.png
Peach MK8 Toad Icon.pngMK8 DKong Icon.png MK8 Koopa Icon.png MK8 Yoshi Icon.pngMK8 Toad Icon.png MK8 Wario Icon.png MK8 Mario Icon.pngDaisy
Daisy PeachMK8 Waluigi Icon.png MK8 Toadette Icon.png MK8 Yoshi Icon.pngMK8 Wario Icon.png MK8 Waluigi Icon.png MK8 Luigi Icon.pngMK8 Toadette Icon.png

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe uses the same system, although more characters have been given rivals.

Rival Order
Player Opponent(s) Player Opponent(s) Player Opponent(s)
MK8 Mario Icon.png PeachMK8 Bowser Icon.png MK8 BabyMario Icon.png MK8 Bowser Jr Icon.pngMK8 BabyPeach Icon.png Lemmy Larry
MK8 Luigi Icon.png MK8 Mario Icon.pngDaisy MK8 BabyLuigi Icon.png MK8 BabyMario Icon.pngMK8 BabyDaisy Icon.png Larry Lemmy
Peach MK8 Toad Icon.pngMK8 DKong Icon.png MK8 BabyPeach Icon.png MK8 BabyMario Icon.pngMK8 BabyDaisy Icon.png Wendy DaisyPeach
Daisy PeachMK8 Waluigi Icon.png MK8 BabyDaisy Icon.png MK8 BabyPeach Icon.pngMK8 BabyLuigi Icon.png Ludwig Iggy
MK8 Rosalina Icon.png MK8 Toad Icon.png MK8 BabyRosalina Icon.png MK8 Toadette Icon.png Iggy Ludwig
MK8 Tanooki Mario Icon.png Cat Peach MK8 MMario Icon.png MK8 PGPeach Icon.png Roy Morton
Cat Peach MK8 Tanooki Mario Icon.png MK8 PGPeach Icon.png MK8 MMario Icon.png Morton Roy
MK8 Yoshi Icon.png MK8 Toad Icon.pngMK8 DKong Icon.png MK8 Wario Icon.png MK8 Mario Icon.pngDaisy Inkling Girl Inkling Boy
MK8 Toad Icon.png MK8 Koopa Icon.pngMK8 Waluigi Icon.png MK8 Waluigi Icon.png MK8 Luigi Icon.pngMK8 Toadette Icon.png Inkling Boy Inkling Girl
MK8 Koopa Icon.png MK8 Yoshi Icon.pngMK8 Toad Icon.png MK8 DKong Icon.png MK8 Bowser Icon.pngMK8 Wario Icon.png MK8 Link Icon.png None
MK8 ShyGuy Icon.png MK8 Yoshi Icon.png MK8 Bowser Icon.png MK8 Mario Icon.pngMK8 Luigi Icon.png VillagerMale-Icon-MK8.png MK8 Isabelle Icon.png
MK8 Lakitu Icon.png None MK8DX Dry Bones Icon.png MK8 Koopa Icon.pngMK8 Dry Bowser Icon.png VillagerFemale-Icon-MK8.png VillagerMale-Icon-MK8.png
MK8 Toadette Icon.png MK8 Yoshi Icon.pngMK8 Wario Icon.png MK8 Bowser Jr Icon.png Peach MK8 Isabelle Icon.png VillagerFemale-Icon-MK8.png
MK8DX King Boo Icon.png None MK8 Dry Bowser Icon.png MK8DX Dry Bones Icon.png Mii amiibo MK8.png None

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Tip #2: Watch the Computer Rival": "During the Grand Prix, you'll see after two races that a computer rival is consistently in first place or second place behind you (assuming you're first!). This rival is the one to gun for in future races to make sure he doesn't steal your lead.". Mario Kart: Double Dash!! Prima strategy guide, page 11