Before his return, reminisce over his past


In just a few hours, Donkey Kong Country returns. Excited yet?

I am. Like, a lot.

I’ve had bananas and barrels on the brain for days. In fact, for the last week over at my day job, I’ve been revisiting some of the ape’s biggest games:

His timeless debut, his son’s rescue mission, his Super NES resurrection and his polygonal disappointment.

Click through the links to watch my video reviews of Donkey Kong’s classics, the games that made the gorilla one of the industry’s most celebrated and influential characters. It’s quite a résumé, folks.

On the dawn of his return, what’s your favorite banana of the bunch?


  1. Of the ones you reviewed here? I guess I’d go with the NES version of the original. It’s better than the Colecovision one I spent so many hours playing, at least.

    But I’d take the original arcade version, its sadistic latter-day “expansion pack” D2K (play it at Funspot in New Hampshire), the Super Game Boy version and even bootlegs like Congorilla and Crazy Kong over any of these 4. And no Donkey Kong game I’ve tried since the Game Boy one, with either polygons or simulated polygons, has deserved the Donkey Kong name, in my book.

  2. As for me, the 1994 puzzle game Donkey Kong (not mentioned here) is the best (among puzzle games). I recommend it to everyone who can get access to it. Many hours of excellent gameplay! Check it out:

  3. Donkey Kong Country. I’ll never forget the first time I heard the underwater theme; It was one of my top three all-time favorite game moments.

  4. Donkey Kong Country 3. The music had such a driving force for every level, the graphics were beautifully bright and characteristic of the game, and because it was released so late in the SNES’s lifetime, it took full advantage of all of the console’s capabilities.

  5. yeah its donkey kong country for me, i was just blown away by the graphics at the time and while i didnt like the gameplay quite as much as mario ive been waiting for DK to make his return to 2d since E3, it looks like my wii game of the year will come down to this or other m

  6. Never been a huge fan of the series, but I like DK Jungle Beat with the bongos. This is getting great reviews, and my wife says she liked playing the games on the SNES, so for that reason alone it might be worth picking it up.

  7. Just a heads-up for anyone needing an extra nudge: Target’s giving away $10 gift cards with the purchase of DKCR today.

  8. I loved Donkey Kong 64 when I was a kid. I literally begged my parents to get it for Christmas. Banjo Kazooie/Tooie were one of my all time favorites in the N64, and DK64 was more or less the same formula. Heck, I even liked the DK rap.

  9. I really enjoyed the first two DKCs, but the third one was over-done and I couldn’t get attached to the characters. I thought DK64 was nice, but it ended up feeling like a reskinned Banjo Kazooie most of the time (just wasn’t as creative or inventive as the SNES titles). I still love the original arcade game, too. Funny enough, I actually liked Jungle Beat (Gamecube), as well; I thought it had fantastic game design and great visuals. I seem to remember playing a lot of Donkey Kong Junior on the NES, too…

  10. Man, I miss the days when DK was the bad guy. I loved going into the arcade and feeling the machine rumble with that opening music. You could feel it in your gut.

  11. My fav? The original old first thing- jumpman, was it? Ahh, the old version of all the modern games are simply classic.

  12. Why do you guys keep ragging on DK64? That game is awesome! Sure it isn’t the best Donkey Kong game, but come on! But it’s not a total disappointment.

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