Countdown Mode

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Preview of Countdown Mode showing altered user interface.
Countdown Mode race in progress.

Countdown Mode is a custom game mode created by MrBean35000vr. Due to how clocks are manipulated, it will only ever be available in single player online play and will not be playable offline.


Explanation of Countdown with example Races

The defining feature of Countdown Mode is that the clock that normally times races counts down rather than up. The race starts with a certain amount of time on each player's clock, typically around 2 minutes 30 seconds. When the time runs out, the player's engine cuts out and they roll to a stop. When all players have run out of time the players are given first, second, third, etc based on how far round the track they are. For example, a player half way round lap 3 would place above someone earlier in lap 3 or on a previous lap.

The other key feature of Countdown Mode is that player's can increase their clock by scoring hits with items. For every other player that you hit with an item, you get 1 point. Each point gives you 3 additional seconds to race. A player cannot earn more than 10 points giving a maximum of 30 seconds extra racing time. 10 points is represented by an axe in the score. This means that players must balance getting a good lead against hitting other players to get more time.


To make the game more suited to Countdown Mode, some items have been altered.


A player is capable of scoring a point from any item. Hitting a player with a red or green shell, a banana or a fake item box scores a point. This even works for trailed items. Items dropped by a player because he/she got hit by another item or obstacle, or got bumped do not score points. Global items like POW Blocks and Bloopers score one point provided at least if one player is affected. A POW Block scores a point even if all players "dodge" it. Points can be scored by hitting players who have run out of time. A point is scored if you drive into a player while being boosted by a mushroom. If you score a point with a golden mushroom (by driving into a player), it immediately disappears so you cannot score further points. There are no thunderclouds.

Item Replacement

Certain items have been replaced with alternate items to improve game balance in Countdown Mode.

Item Replacement
Race Mode Countdown Mode
Single Green Shell Single Green Shell
Triple Green Shell Triple Fake Item Box
Single Red Shell Single Red Shell
Triple Red Shell Triple Green Shell
Blue Shell Blue Shell
Single Banana Single Banana
Triple Banana Triple Banana
Fake Item Box Single Fake Item Box
Single Mushroom 'Shroom Green' (Single Mushroom & Single Green Shell)
Triple Mushroom Triple Red Shell
Golden Mushroom Golden Mushroom
Star Star
Bomb Bomb
Blooper Blooper
Thundercloud Mega Mushroom
Mega Mushroom 'Shroom Bomb' (Single Mushroom & Bomb)
Bullet Bill Bullet Bill
POW Block POW Block
Lightning Lightning

Custom Track Distributions

This mode is part of the following Custom Track Distributions:

A Riivolution version of Countdown Mode is promised. A beta version is available at

aplumafreak500 also has released a proof of concept patch that (pending further tests) should allow Countdown Mode to be played on Worldwide and Nintendo's regions.

A modified version was created by Kazuki that allows the time limit to be set for each track by a course.lex file.