Friday, May 8, 2009


Tonight's challenge is Super Mario Cart on Super Nintendo. The video game tournament will start at 7pm.


Bill Morton said...
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Bill Morton said...

Super Mario Kart was produced by Shigeru Miyamoto and directed by Tadashi Sugiyama and Hideki Konno.

In an interview Miyamoto has said that development team originally set out to produce a game capable of displaying two players on the same game screen simultaneously.

In the same interview Konno stated that development started with a desire to create a two player racing game in contrast to the single player gameplay of SNES launch title F-Zero.

Computer and Video Games suggest that this initial emphasis on creating a two player experience is the reason why even in the single player modes, a horizontal split-screen is utilised during gameplay.

The intention to create the racing modes of the game had been present from the start of the project and Battle Mode was developed from the desire to create a one-on-one mode where victory was not determined simply by competing for rank.

The game did not start out as a Mario series game and the first prototype featured a generic man in overalls in the kart; the team decided that characters three heads tall would best suit the design of the karts.

The decision to incorporate Mario series characters into the game didn't come until two or three months after the start of development.

The choice was made after the development team, when observing how one kart looked to another driving past it, decided to see what it would look like with Mario in the kart.

Thinking that having Mario in the kart looked better than previous designs, the idea of a Mario themed racing game was born.

Notable in the development of Super Mario Kart was its use of Mode 7 graphics.

First seen in F-Zero, Mode 7 is a form of texture mapping available on the SNES which allows a plane to be rotated and scaled freely, achieving a pseudo three-dimensional appearance. have credited the use of Mode 7 with giving the game graphics which at the time of release were considered to be "breathtaking".

Retrospective reflection on the Mode 7 visuals has been mixed with IGN stating that the once revolutionary technology now looks "crude and flickery" whilst the Video Game Bible describes them as "beautiful" and adding to the game.

Super Mario Kart was also the first game on the SNES to use a DSP-1 chip.

DSP (Digital Signal Processor) chips were used in SNES games as they provided a better handling of floating-point calculations to assist with three-dimensional maths.

The DSP-1 chip that was used in Super Mario Kart went on to be the most popular DSP chip to be used in SNES games.