|First appearance||Super Mario Bros. (1985)|
Lakitu are bespectacled Koopas who ride clouds through the skies. They are the best known for tossing Spiny Eggs to Mario or Luigi below. However, they seem to be taking on less evil tasks in other games, such as refereeing races, umpiring tennis and baseball games, and even filming Mario's adventures. Many of the sports game manuals referred to Lakitu in the singular, indicating that there may have only been a specific individual Lakitu involved (who is named for his species, like Toad or Yoshi), and Mario Kart 7 introduced a unique, playable Lakitu character. After being asked what video game character would represent him the best, Shigeru Miyamoto replied that Lakitu would, as he "seems to be very free, floating in the air, going anywhere", a type of personality Miyamoto can apparently relate to. Even though they throw Spinies, they can also throw coins if Mario passes through a Gold Ring. When they are defeated, their clouds can be ridden for a short amount of time in some games.
Creation and DevelopmentEdit
Lakitus are Koopas who employ clouds as vehicles. However, Lakitus themselves have a rather different appearance than the normal Koopa Troopas; Lakitus have very different heads with much smaller, circular noses, all generic Lakitus wear thick goggles, and Lakitus have a ring pattern on their shells rather than the hexagon pattern featured on those of Koopas. Also, while most Koopas (other than the Dry Bones of certain Paper Mario games) have no hair at all, Lakitus are usually depicted with three small strands of hair, or (as seen in Mario Superstar Baseball) a small clump of black hair.
However, Lakitus are most differentiatable from Koopa Troopas in that they simply ride clouds. These clouds have changed over the years perhaps even more than Lakitus themselves; although 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System games depicted Lakitu as riding a cloud identical to certain block-like cloud platforms (except with a green outline rather than black due to graphical limitations), Super Mario World (which still included these small platforms of old) gave Lakitus more realistic, larger clouds to commandeer.
Mario Kart seriesEdit
Lakitu takes the prominent role of a race referee, guiding the racers in almost every circumstance. The most notable is Lakitu holding the traffic lights in front of the participants at the start of every race or battle. He also tells the racers the current lap they are in the race after crossing the checkered line and tell when they are going in the wrong way of the track. In these circumstances, Lakitu shows a sign with a U-turn arrow, indicating that the player is going in the opposite way of the road and must turn back to take the right way.
Lakitu also helps the racers when they are in a bad predicament. Whether the racers fall into a void, a body of water, lava or get stuck in an inaccessible place for the vehicles, Lakitu takes the racers using his fishing pole back to the racetrack.
|The Video Games Fanon Image Database contains renders of this subject. For all available renders of this character, see here.|
|Mario Kart Ultimate Characters|
|Default Characters (Small):||Toad • Lakitu • Baby Mario • Koopa Troopa|
|Default Characters (Medium):||Mii • Mario • Luigi • Yoshi • Peach|
|Default Characters (Large):||Bowser • Donkey Kong • Wario • Waluigi|
|Unlockable Characters (Small):||Toadette • Baby Luigi • Paratroopa • Shy Guy • Penguin|
|Unlockable Characters (Medium):||Daisy • Birdo • Bowser Jr. • Kamek • Hammer Bro.|
|Unlockable Characters (Large):||King Boo • Wiggler • Petey Piranha • Boom Boom • Pianta|
|Purchasable Characters (Small):||Dry Bones • Goomba • Baby Peach • Baby Daisy • Whittle|
|Purchasable Characters (Medium):||Diddy Kong • Fawful • Professor E. Gadd • Chargin' Chuck • Rex|
|Purchasable Characters (Large):||Rosalina • Midbus • Funky Kong • Pom Pom • Wart|