Lakitu is the referee that has appeared in every Mario Kart game since the series inception. In the instruction guide for Super Mario Kart, Lakitu introduced players to the world of Mario Kart, showing them different features of the game.
Lakitu is a kind soul, and in the races, Lakitu will perform various helpful duties; most importantly, he will start the race or battle by using his Start Signal. If the player is driving in the wrong direction, he will appear holding a "Wrong Way" or a U-Turn sign until he/she turns around. After crossing the finish line, he will appear to indicate the lap the player is on with his lap sign or wave a checkered flag to indicate the race is finished. And, of course, if the player falls off the track or goes out of bounds, he will use his fishing pole to get them back onto the track. In Super Mario Kart, Mario Kart: Super Circuit, Mario Kart 7, and Mario Kart 8, Lakitu charged the player Coins to drop them back onto the track.
If the player taps the Acceleration button just as they hit the ground after Lakitu drops them onto the track, they can perform a recovery boost.
In the latest three games, Lakitu has managed to become a playable racer as well.
Lakitu is a Koopa who floats in a cloud. He looks like a Koopa Troopa, but his shell has a different design. He is a little bit chubbier than a regular Koopa, but he is still a yellow shade. He has three black strands of hair on his head. When he is a referee in Mario Kart, his shell is green, but when he is a driver, he has a red shell.
In the other Mario games, Lakitu just has regular goggles, but in Mario Kart, a headset is attached to his goggles. That way, he can talk to other Koopas if he gets bored of the race. And instead of dropping deadly Spiny Shells onto the track to damage you, he gets a cool starter light and a fishing pole that helps you out from holes and pits.
Mario Kart 7
Mario Kart 7 is the first time that Lakitu is made available as a racer. As in all other Mario Kart games, he resembles a turtle on a cloud. His stats match those of Toad, Koopa Troopa, and Shy Guy, which makes him a featherweight racer. He is the staff ghost racer for Piranha Plant Slide and SNES Rainbow Road.
Mario Kart 8/Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
The red-shelled Lakitu racer returns in Mario Kart 8 as well as the green-shelled referee. His stats match those of Toad, Koopa Troopa, Shy Guy, Toadette, Larry, and Wendy. He is the staff ghost racer for SNES Donut Plains 3.
- Piranha Plant Slide (3DS)
- SNES Rainbow Road (3DS*)
- Donut Plains 3 (Wii U*,Switch)
- Dragon Driftway (Wii U, Switch)
- For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Lakitu.
|Mario Kart 7 racers|
|Feather||Toad • Koopa Troopa • Shy Guy • Lakitu|
|Light||Peach • Daisy • Yoshi|
|Medium||Mario • Luigi • Mii|
|Cruiser||Donkey Kong • Rosalina • Wiggler|
|Heavy||Wario • Bowser • Metal Mario • Honey Queen|
|Mario Kart 8 / Deluxe racers|
|Light||Baby Mario • Baby Luigi • Baby Peach • Baby Daisy • Baby Rosalina • Toad • Toadette • Koopa Troopa • Shy Guy • Lakitu • Larry Koopa • Wendy O. Koopa • Lemmy Koopa • Isabelle+ • Villager+ • Dry Bones* • Bowser Jr.*|
|Medium||Mario • Luigi • Peach • Daisy • Yoshi • Ludwig von Koopa • Iggy Koopa • Tanooki Mario+ • Cat Peach+ • Inklings*|
|Heavy||Wario • Waluigi • Donkey Kong • Rosalina • Bowser • Roy Koopa • Morton Koopa Jr. • Metal Mario • Pink Gold Peach • Link+ • Dry Bowser+ • King Boo* • Gold Mario*|
|+ - denotes DLC. • * - denotes exclusivity to Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.|