Kirby Air Ride game

Kirby Air Ride

Kirby Air Ride is a high-speed, simple racing game starring HAL's flagship pink puffball.


Kirby's Air Ride is a kart racer starring the puffy, pink hero, Kirby. The game is notable for its simplistic control scheme that only uses the analog stick for direction and one button on the GameCube controller for decelerating and using power ups. Unlike most other driving games, acceleration occurs regardless of player input. The game is primarily intended to be played with multiple people, as there are no dedicated career mode

Game Modes

Air Ride

Race to the Finish on one of several courses. Kirby can utilize boost pads, triggers, copy abilities and more to gain an advantage. Free Run mode also acts as a Time Trial mode that allows to set records.

Top Ride

This mode plays the most differently compared to the other two which the various tracks only fill a single screen (reminiscent of Super Off Road) Kirby has access to only two vehicles in this mode; the free star (where Kirby can be pointed in the direction the player wants him to go) and the steer star (which has relative controls).

City Trial

Players have a limited time to traverse a city, collecting stat-building power-ups to be used against other players in various mini-games after the allotted time limit expires. Kirby starts in the Compact Star which has lower stats. By holding the action button and down on the control stick, Kirby can dismount his Air Ride in order to board another one. However he won't be able to obtain any power-ups while not riding a vehicle. Playing in Free Run mode allows Kirby to use any unlocked vehicle.

LAN Play

This game is one of the few titles compatible with the Broadband Adapter. Up to four systems can be linked together. When two systems are linked, up to two players can play on one system, however when playing with three or more systems, only one player per console can play. Any unlocked content located on the memory card can be used for LAN play. Only Air Ride and City Trial modes are playable with most of the customizable options available.


The game also features several unlockables that become available via an achievement system labeled as the Checklist. This consists of a board with several panels that turn around only when certain conditions have been met. Some challenges will also reward additional vehicles, characters, songs in the Sound Test and more. Revealing purple spaces also allows Kirby to clear a challenge without actually having to fulfill its normal requirements. Not all challenges can be unlocked through this method however. This system would later appear in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Kid Icarus Uprising.

Air Ride Machines

Machine NameDescriptorGame Modes
Free StarMachine will steer based on the control stick's direction.Top
Steer StarMachine can be steered left or right.Top
Compact StarSlower, but easy to control. Starter for City TrialCity
WarpstarAll-round type of vehicleAir, City
Rocket StarGrants a strong speed boost after 100% chargeAir, City
Winged StarGoes faster in the airAir, City
Shadow StarAttacks the strongestAir, City
Wagon StarUnable to charge for boosts.Air, City
Swerve StarCan only steer while charging (Which immediately stops the vehicle)Air, City
Slick StarHas slippery handlingAir, City
Turbo StarVery fast, tough steeringAir, City
Formula StarBest top speedAir, City
Bulk StarMoves after charging, very strong.Air, City
Jet StarMoves faster while in the airAir, City
Wheelie BikeControl is unorthodox.Air, City
Rex WheelieVery fast if it can be kept under control.Air, City
Wheelie ScooterHigh jumper, can quick turnAir, City
King DeDeDeAlways has hammer ability, great power.Air, City
Meta KnightAlways has sword ability, great at flyingAir, City
Flight WarpstarHas upgraded gliding capabilitiesAir, City
HydraLegendary machine, has extra battle power. Must be assembled in City mode.City
DragoonCan stay in the air for as long as possible. Must be assembled in City mode.City


Course NameDescriptionGame Modes
Fantasy MeadowsAir, City
Celestial ValleyAir, City
Sky SandsAir, City
Frozen HillsideAir, City
Magma FlowsAir, City
Beanstalk ParkAir, City
Machine PassageAir, City
Checker KnightsAir, City
Nebula BeltAir, City

Copy Abilities

Defeating enemies with the different copy abilities allows Kirby to gain a speed boost. He can attack rival racers to slow them down.

SwordRun into enemies to attack
PlasmaTap the control stick to charge, press Action to fire
WingGain a speed boost
WheelObtain better flying abilities
SleepWiggle the control stick to regain control.
BombHold the action button to throw a bomb farther. This also causes Kirby to break however.
NeedleAttack enemies around Kirby.
MicrophoneImmediate use, has greater area of damage