Author Topic: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2  (Read 6909 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline NWR_pap64

  • You are not the boss of me
  • Score: 25
    • View Profile
    • Nintendo World Report
My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« on: May 31, 2010, 03:33:20 PM »
http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/blogArt.cfm?artid=23168

  NOTE: This is part 2 of my Favorite Nintendo Character feature. If you haven't read the first part, click here.    


 
Donkey Kong 64Â… So much anticipation, so much disappointment
   


My last story ended with the disappointing release of Donkey Kong 64 on the Nintendo 64. Even if there was some enjoyment during sparse moments the game felt more like a Banjo-Kazooie game with a Donkey Kong skin. But the bitterness over the game's existence was short lived. In 2000, Nintendo unveiled the GameCube, and with it came the possibilities of exciting new games starring Donkey Kong. And soon enough, in 2001 one of the first games Rare announced for the GC was Donkey Kong Racing. The early footage had me frothing at the mouth. Even if it wasn't a platforming game, Donkey Kong Racing looked to have all the elements that made the Donkey Kong Country games so exciting, including graphics.    


 
This would be one of the only images we would get of the ill-fated GameCube game
   


But alas, life can be a bitch. The next year, Microsoft announced that they purchased Rare, making them exclusive developers. Nintendo, and Donkey Kong, had lost their star developers, along with the possibilities of new Donkey Kong games on the GameCube.    


This had a significant impact on Donkey Kong, both as a character and as a videogame property. Right after Rare became a Microsoft developer, Nintendo didn't do much with the character, except putting him in spin-off games unrelated to the character, done by several second and third parties. Even if deep down I wanted a true adventure game I would take the spin-offs as long as it meant that there would be Donkey Kong for a long time.    


 
To this day, Donkey Konga remains one of my all time favorite rhythm games
   


My two favorite spin-off titles were Mario vs. Donkey Kong on the Game Boy Advance, and Donkey Konga on the GameCube. Donkey Konga was developed by Namco-Bandai, and featured music based gameplay inspired by the company's own Taiko Drum Master series. The game even featured a funky bongo controller! The gameplay and the music were addicting. Even the children's songs were captivating when played in Donkey Konga. I also have many great multiplayer memories with this title. Seriously, four players banging their drums and clapping in rhythm is pretty damn epic in my book! Unfortunately, only two of the three Donkey Konga titles made it to North America. The third, and final, title stayed in Japan.    


 
This game has some of the best Donkey Kong moments in a Nintendo game yet
   


Mario vs. Donkey Kong was a very fun puzzle/platforming game, one that ignited Donkey Kong's old rivalry. It gave Donkey Kong some character and story. Even Mario got to shine thanks to some amazing vocals by Charles Martinet.    


   


Donkey Kong would also become a major player in Nintendo's multiplayer franchises. He was a playable character in the Mario Party games until Mario Party 5 on the GameCube. Afterwards he became a support character that would help players gain victory in the perilous party boards, a decision I felt was unnecessary, especially since Donkey Kong would be replaced by generic Mario enemies like Hammer Bros. In the Mario Kart series Donkey Kong made his presence felt. Technically, however, Donkey Kong first appeared as DK Jr. in the first Mario Kart title on the SNES. But it wasn't till Mario Kart 64 that Donkey Kong first appeared as his DKC self in a Mario title. Finally, Donkey Kong and his whole universe were represented in the Super Smash Bros. series.    


   


So with spin-off after spin-off, it looked as if Donkey Kong would forever remain a support character, used only when Nintendo needed a character to show off their roster. But this would change in 2005. In that year, Nintendo released Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat for the GameCube. The first Donkey Kong adventure since Donkey Kong 64 on the N64! Despite being a Donkey Kong adventure title, it would be very different from the Rare series. Developed by Nintendo Tokyo (who would later on create Super Mario Galaxy 1 and 2 on the Wii), Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat was a very unique game in that it was controlled completely by the Donkey Konga controller! You tapped the bongos left or right in order to move DK around, and clapping near the bongos would cause DK to attack enemies. Despite how gimmicky this sounded the game was an absolute blast, thanks to some very clever and addicting gameplay, great implementation of controls, a stunning soundtrack and graphics that truly pushed the GameCube's hardware to the limit. And yes, Donkey Kong became even more awesome.    


   


Unfortunately, despite its star, gameplay, and critical acclaim from both the media and fans, Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat was a commercial disappointment. The first Donkey Kong game in years, and it flops! Since then, Donkey Kong went back to being a supporting character. No new Donkey Kong game has been announced since. As a fan, this breaks my heart. Donkey Kong is a character that has heart and a rich history. Sure, Mario might be the mascot, Link the popular hero, and Pokemon the cash cow, but if it wasn't for Donkey Kong none of these series would exist today, so the big ape deserves more respect!    


Now that I spoke about my gaming history with Donkey KongÂ…why do I like him so much? Like Bowser and Wario, Donkey Kong started out as Mario's nemesis. But unlike Bowser, who is truly evil and desires power, and Wario, a money loving, greedy jerk, Donkey Kong isn't evil or malicious. In the first game, he just fell in love with Pauline, causing his animal instincts to go wild. The "evil" things he does aren't truly bad; Donkey Kong just desires what everyone else has, but goes about it the wrong way. In Mario vs. Donkey Kong, all he wanted was a Mario toy. He did the wrong thing by stealing them, of course, but by the end of the game he was truly sorry. This gave Mario enough of a reason to give him a Mario toy. In the sequel, all Donkey Kong wanted was for Pauline to accept his toy. When Pauline ignores him, he feels betrayed, and becomes an animal once more. But like in the GBA game, he realizes that what he did was wrong.    


And that's why I like the character so much. He is very lovable, despite being an 800 pound gorilla. There's an innocence and humanity to this character. In all the games he's been he always wants to help, even when in reality he is making it impossible for the main character to shine in some games. He wants to be accepted, be part of the group. He is also very loyal to his friends and family, going through many lengths just to save them. So it's this combination of lovable qualities and heroism aspects that make Donkey Kong a very compelling character. Long story short, he's a big, hairy lug.    


   


The other thing that makes this character so interesting is the history behind him. In the first Donkey Kong Country game, Cranky Kong, an ill-tempered character that both gave advice and scolded Donkey Kong, is believed to have been the Donkey Kong Mario faced in the original Donkey Kong arcade game, making our current Donkey Kong either a distant relative or Cranky Kong's son. This has spawned many theories in the Nintendo community. Cranky is known for telling many tall tales, making himself look like a great hero, so it is likely that he is lying about him being the original Kong. But, the intro to Donkey Kong Country has Funky sitting on the original arcade stage playing the original Donkey Kong theme, and then Donkey Kong comes along with a boom box, sends Cranky flying and takes over the game, implying that Cranky was indeed the first Kong and this new Donkey Kong would be the successor. Also, if Cranky Kong was the original Donkey Kong, how come he is so old while Mario looks young? Has the power of the Mushroom Kingdom been keeping Mario forever young? It's a silly conspiracy theory, but it's what makes the character so fascinating.    


   


Speaking of family, Donkey Kong also has a very expansive family. Like I already mentioned, Cranky Kong is mainly his tutor, with his relationship to Donkey Kong being a mystery. His sidekick is the fun Diddy Kong, a monkey (note to readersÂ… Diddy Kong is a monkey, not an ape. Monkeys have tails, apes do not.). Then we have Dixie Kong, Diddy Kong's best friend and possible love interest. Oh now that I mentioned love interest, Candy Kong is Donkey Kong's main squeezeÂ… and she is rather disturbing. When Rare created this character they weren't afraid to show her sexy side, meaning that every time you met her she was flirty, a tease, scantily clad, and very suggestive. It makes you wonder why Donkey Kong bothers with Pauline when he has a blonde bombshell of the same species!    


Funky Kong looks like Donkey Kong, but stands up straight, wears sunglasses, ripped shorts, a wife beater, and a bandana. In other words, he's the bad ass of the family. He is also useful, providing vehicles and weapons to Donkey Kong and friends. Introduced in Donkey Kong Country 2 Wrinkly Kong was Cranky's wife (and alleged mother of Donkey Kong). She was humorously killed off by Rare in Donkey Kong 64. Because of that, she now appears as a ghost, offering advice from beyond the grave. There's also Tiny Kong, Lanky Kong, Kiddy Kong, Swanky KongÂ…    


But enough with the good guys! Like all good heroes Donkey Kong has a villain in the form of King K. Rool, an overweight alligator that wears a crown and a red cape, and has a bulging, bloody red eye. While he isn't as charming or as fun as Bowser K. Rool and DK's rivalry is a very interesting one. K. Rool is the leader of the Kremling clan, an army that consists of reptiles (alligators, snakes, etc.).  The rivalry between the Kongs and the Kremlins could even be seen as a parody of the battle between mammals and reptiles for dominance in the planet.    


   


PHEW! There's so much to talk about here, but I hope you understand why this character is so beloved. Like Mario, Donkey Kong is closely tied to Nintendo's history. His first game was the one that launched Nintendo into success in the videogame world. While it's unfortunate that Nintendo hasn't done much with the character in the last few years it is clear that Donkey Kong's fame has already been cemented into the videogame world as an iconic videogame character, formidable foe, and all around lovable lug.    


Next time on My Favorite Nintendo Character: This character has no super powers, isn't a hero in the traditional sense, has strength but is very small, his story recalls that of David and Goliath, and HAS faced off against Donkey Kong at one point in his careerÂ…

Pedro Hernandez
NWR Staff Writer

Offline Caterkiller

  • Not too big for Smash Bros. after all
  • Score: 74
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2010, 01:40:44 AM »
You know I am absolutely certain that Cranky was the Original DK, while DK Jr grew up to be the Donkey Kong we play with today. Boy oh boy do I long for a new adventure of Kong.
Nintendo players and One Piece readers, just better people.

RomanceDawn

Offline MegaByte

  • NWR Staff... Can't win trivia
  • NWR Staff Pro
  • Score: 31337
    • View Profile
    • Konfiskated Teknologies Network
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2010, 02:22:50 AM »
I broke down the relationships here if you're interested: http://themushroomkingdom.net/kongtroversy.shtml
Aaron Kaluszka
Contributing Editor, Nintendo World Report

Offline Caterkiller

  • Not too big for Smash Bros. after all
  • Score: 74
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2010, 11:03:21 AM »
Very good read Megabyte.
Nintendo players and One Piece readers, just better people.

RomanceDawn

Offline Stratos

  • Stale lazy meme pirate
  • Score: 69
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2010, 05:09:17 AM »
I don't see it as mattering. Cranky is the original Donkey Kong in my mind and DK's senior, either granddad or papa is fine.

Wonder who the next one is...

Toad? He's small and not really a hero in the traditional sense even thought he has played the role from time to time.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2010, 05:11:03 AM by Stratos »
My Game Collection
NNID: Chronocast
Switch: SW-6786-5514-9978
3DS Friend Code: 0447-5723-6467
XBL Gamertag: Chronocast

Offline OliverJefferds

  • Score: 0
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2011, 11:45:29 AM »
I don't see it as mattering. Cranky is the original Donkey Kong in my mind and DK's senior, either granddad or papa is fine.

Wonder who noticed my spam and who didn't...

Toad? He's small and not really a hero in the traditional sense even thought he has played the role from time to time.

Nice work Mega byte. It really does sum it all up.  The relationships have been broken down very clearly.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2020, 10:17:53 AM by Khushrenada »

Offline oldtim3r

  • Score: 0
    • View Profile
    • over the counter phentermine sale
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2020, 04:59:19 AM »
You know I am absolutely certain that Cranky was the Original DK, while DK Jr grew up to be the Donkey Kong we play with today. Boy oh boy do I long for a new adventure of Kong.

I agree Cranky was indeed the OG.

Offline Khushrenada

  • The Rockin' Dog
  • NWR Junior Ranger
  • Score: 33
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2020, 10:56:47 AM »
Must be an oldtimer if it took him 10 years to respond to this thread.

Offline Stratos

  • Stale lazy meme pirate
  • Score: 69
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2020, 12:29:10 PM »
Talk about a blast from the past!
My Game Collection
NNID: Chronocast
Switch: SW-6786-5514-9978
3DS Friend Code: 0447-5723-6467
XBL Gamertag: Chronocast

Offline MASB

  • Jason Ricci and the New Blood! Coming soon to a town near you!
  • Score: 13
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2020, 10:37:32 PM »
Pedro and Aaron gave us the closest thing this site is ever going to get to Donkey Kong Historia, it seems.

Offline GaryHernandez

  • Score: 0
    • View Profile
    • this is why testogen works
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2020, 09:40:04 AM »
I don't see it as mattering. Cranky is the original Donkey Kong in my mind and DK's senior, either granddad or papa is fine.

Wonder who the next one is...

Toad? He's small and not really a hero in the traditional sense even thought he has played the role from time to time.
I am a big Nintendo fan. When I was a kid I used to play these games every day. Donkey Kong was my favorite. Can anyone suggest me where I can get the game because I want to play it and I can't wait.

Offline pokepal148

  • The Greatest Kirby Helper
  • *
  • Score: -9968
    • View Profile
Re: My Favorite Nintendo Character: Donkey Kong Part 2
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2020, 02:53:29 PM »
Man this thread seems to keep getting action these days.
Forum Retrospective - Come play games with us. It'll be fun.