Jump to content


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Original author(s)Steve and Oliver Baker
  • "Benau"
  • "Alayan"
  • Marianne Gagnon "Auria"
  • Jean-Manuel Clemençon "Samuncle"
Initial release6 August 2007 (16 years ago) (2007-08-06)
Stable release
1.4[1] Edit this on Wikidata / 1 November 2022 (19 months ago) (1 November 2022)
Written inC++, GLSL,[2] AngelScript[3]
  • Antarctica
Edit this at Wikidata
PlatformLinux, macOS, Microsoft Windows, Android, iOS (in beta), Nintendo Switch[4]
LicenseGPLv3 (code)
GPL, CC BY-SA or more permissive (assets)

SuperTuxKart (STK) is a free and open-source kart racing game, distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License, version 3. It features mascots of various open-source projects. SuperTuxKart is cross-platform, running on Linux, macOS, Windows, iOS (beta), Android systems and Nintendo Switch (homebrew).[5]

SuperTuxKart started as a fork of TuxKart, originally developed by Steve and Oliver Baker in 2000. When TuxKart's development ended around March 2004, a fork as SuperTuxKart was conducted by other developers in 2006. SuperTuxKart is under active development by the game's community.


GNU and Nolok in the beginning story of Story Mode in STK
Split-screen 4-player multiplayer in SuperTuxKart (2017, 0.9.3)

SuperTuxKart's gameplay is similar to that of the Mario Kart series, but also has distinct elements, such as collecting and using cans of Nitro. The game features the mascots of several open source projects. For example, Mozilla Thunderbird plays the referee, flagging the start of the race and saving players when they drive off the course. The game supports single player, local multiplayer, WAN multiplayer, and LAN multiplayer modes. Networking modes were introduced in version 1.0.[6][7]


The official playable characters of SuperTuxKart are the mascots of free and open-source projects. The character Nolok[8] does not represent a particular open source project, but was created by the SuperTux project as the antagonist of Tux. The mascots for many other projects are available as add-ons from SuperTuxKart's add-ons website.


Unlike Mario Kart, STK has a story associated with gameplay, similar to Crash Team Racing. Story mode is used to unlock tracks and characters for single and multi-player modes. At the beginning of story mode, Gnu, the leader of the free/libre and open-source world, is captured by Nolok, the villain in STK, with his spaceship. Nolok then visits Tux and tells him that he has kidnapped Gnu; unless Tux and his friends can defeat Nolok, the 'King of the Karts', Gnu would become his supper. After the player defeats Nolok in Fort Magma, the final track of STK, Tux rescues Gnu from his prison.


SuperTuxKart kart selection screen
Screenshot showing character selection screen (2018)
TuxKart - Tux Tollway, from version 0.4
SuperTuxKart 0.7, the first version to use the Irrlicht Engine
A game session with custom characters from games such as Pizza Tower, Bomberman and Touhou Project.

SuperTuxKart is based on TuxKart, a project initiated by Steve Baker in April 2000. Due to internal disagreements in the TuxKart project, development stalled. The project ultimately collapsed and was cancelled in March 2004. The project was forked as SuperTuxKart,[9] but remained in an unplayable and unmaintained state. In 2006 Joerg "Hiker" Henrichs[10] resurrected the project and, with the help of Eduardo "Coz" Hernandez Munoz,[10] released the game in a playable state.[6] In 2008, Marianne Gagnon (aka. "Auria") joined the project and eventually replaced Coz as one of the project leaders after his retirement.

Historically licensed under version 2 of the GPL, in 2008 the game's source code was relicensed to the GPLv3.[11] The game's assets (textures, models, sounds, music, etc.) are licensed under a mixture of free content and DFSG conforming licenses: GPL, CC BY, CC BY-SA, and Public Domain.[12]

In 2010, SuperTuxKart switched away from using SDL and PLIB libraries (used through version 0.6.2) for graphics and started using the Irrlicht Engine. This change was released in version 0.7.[6] In 2013 and 2014, the game participated in Google Summer of Code as a mentoring organization.[13] The migration of the code repository from SourceForge to GitHub was officially announced in January 2014,[14] though the assets repository and downloads remain on SourceForge.[15] In April 2015, version 0.9 was released which used a highly modified version of Irrlicht,[16] including an entirely new graphics renderer dubbed Antarctica.[17] This enabled much better graphics with features such as dynamic lighting, ambient occlusion, depth of field, real-time shadow mapping, and more. In early 2018, Antarctica switched to using PBR in the git version of the game.[18] Antarctica Rendering Engine uses OpenGL 3.3+ (or OpenGL ES on suitable platforms) and GLSL for most of the graphical work.

In March 2017, SuperTuxKart was greenlit on digital distributor Steam,[19] but as of July 2023, SuperTuxKart is not yet downloadable on Steam.[20] In May 2019, Joerg "Hiker" Henrichs stepped down as a lead developer of SuperTuxkart, with "Benau" and "Alayan" taking over as the new project leaders.[21]

In September 2021, SuperTuxKart 1.3 was released, and has support for force feedback.[22] Force feedback is extremely uncommon for free software games.[citation needed]


In 2004, TuxKart was selected by The Linux Game Tome to be their "Game of the Month" project. In 2007 Full Circle Magazine named SuperTuxKart as one of the top five racing games available for Linux, describing it as a game for gamers who are tired of realistic driving.[23] Linux Journal also praised the game, saying that the courses in SuperTuxKart are "fun", "colorful" and "imaginative".[24] Although it did not make it into the APC Mag top five free games, it received an honorable mention in 2008.[25] In 2009, TechRadar cited it as one of the best games to put on a Linux netbook.[26] In 2016, OMG! Ubuntu! called SuperTuxKart "the best kart racing game to not feature Mario, Toad or Diddy Kong".[27]

Since August 2007 SuperTuxKart has been downloaded over 3.2 million times from SourceForge.net[28] and has over 500 thousand downloads on the Google Play store.[29]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "SuperTuxKart 1.4 release". November 1, 2022. Retrieved June 12, 2023.
  2. ^ "supertuxkart/stk-code on GitHub". GitHub. Retrieved September 5, 2021.
  3. ^ "Scripting Dev - SuperTuxKart". Archived from the original on September 5, 2021. Retrieved September 5, 2021.
  4. ^ @supertuxkart (March 4, 2021). "SuperTuxKart on Switch coming soon thanks to Mary!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  5. ^ "SuperTuxKart Downloads". SuperTuxKart. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  6. ^ a b c "FAQ – SuperTuxKart". SuperTuxKart. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  7. ^ "Talk:Lobby implementation - SuperTuxKart". supertuxkart.net. Archived from the original on May 20, 2019. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  8. ^ "Nolok - SuperTux". supertux.lethargik.org. Archived from the original on January 29, 2022. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  9. ^ "Re: Still alive?". Linux Game Tome (archived). June 6, 2012. Archived from the original on June 6, 2012.
  10. ^ a b "CREDITS". Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  11. ^ "Updated the GPL version to GPLv3". GitHub. June 13, 2008. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  12. ^ "supertuxkart/stk-code". GitHub. January 20, 2022.
  13. ^ "SuperTuxKart participating in GSoC 2013". blog.supertuxkart.net. April 12, 2013. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  14. ^ Henrichs, Joerg (January 17, 2014). "Migrating to GitHub". Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  15. ^ "Source control". SuperTuxKart. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  16. ^ "Antarctica: Overview". SuperTuxKart. Archived from the original on March 28, 2019. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  17. ^ "Antarctica: Technical Details". SuperTuxKart. Archived from the original on August 29, 2019. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  18. ^ "Everything is Shiny". SuperTuxKart. April 19, 2018. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  19. ^ "We are Greenlit!!!". blog.supertuxkart.net. March 1, 2017. Retrieved July 26, 2019.
  20. ^ "Search on the Steam store". Retrieved October 10, 2021.
  21. ^ Joerg "Hiker" Henrichs (May 16, 2019). "My Departure from SuperTuxKart". Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  22. ^ "SuperTuxKart". SuperTuxKart. September 3, 2022.
  23. ^ Min, Andrew (October 2007). "Top Five Racing Games" (PDF). Full Circle Magazine (6). Retrieved July 4, 2013.
  24. ^ Gagné, Marcel (November 1, 2007). "Cooking with Linux – Because Nothing Says High Performance Like a Good Race". Linux Journal. Retrieved July 4, 2013.
  25. ^ Sbarski, Peter (January 21, 2008). "Top 5 best (free) open source games". APC. Retrieved July 5, 2012.
  26. ^ Oxford, Adam (February 12, 2009). "12 of the best games for your Linux netbook". TechRadar. Retrieved July 4, 2013.
  27. ^ "SuperTuxKart 0.9.2 Released With New Tracks, Single-Player Modes". OMG! Ubuntu!. July 3, 2016. Retrieved August 29, 2019.
  28. ^ "Download Statistics". SourceForge. Retrieved June 18, 2019.
  29. ^ "SuperTuxKart". Google Play. Retrieved August 29, 2019.

External links[edit]