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Featured Image Credit: Nintendo
Science has many uses for our society. We entrust our best and brightest folks in white coats to think about it so that we don't have to.
It's nice to know that the boffins are doing their jobs. One such battler for the fate of human knowledge is Henry Hinnefeld, a data scientist at the University of Illinois.
He's put his not inconsiderable intellect towards answering one of the great questions of our time, a quandary that has been debated and discussed to death in children's bedrooms the world over: just which character out of Mario Kart is the best?
Being a data scientist, Hinnefeld has used all of his professional knowhow to answer this question and now, the results are in.
"One thing that always vexed our little group of would-be speedsters was the question of which character was best," he wrote in a post on Medium.
"Some people swore by zippy Yoshi, others argued that big, heavy Bowser was the best option."
Using pure science, Hinnefeld got to work. He wrote on the site: "The concept of Pareto efficiency applies to situations where there is a finite pool of resources and multiple competing outcomes that depend on how those resources are allocated."
"The 'Pareto efficient' allocations are those in which it's impossible to improve one outcome without worsening another outcome."
So, if you weren't keeping up - the most 'Pareto efficient' character is the one that increases their own performance while limiting their own weaknesses.
According to Hinnefeld: "Unless you're going all-in on acceleration, it looks like a heavy character is the way to go; the two heaviest character classes (Wario and Donkey Kong) account for 11/15 of the Pareto-optimal configurations."
"Heavy characters are more versatile than light characters. While Wario's possible configurations can achieve about 77 percent of the max acceleration, Baby Mario can only get up to 50 percent of the max speed."
"Metal Mario/Pink Gold Peach are the only characters that have no configurations on the Pareto frontier," he adds - so you know which ones to avoid.
Of course, the main reasoning behind anything is the user, and in a world as complicated and with so many variables as Mario Kart, it will ultimately always come down to the fool with the controller in hand.
Now, though, you can at least set yourself up to succeed: Wario all the way.