Donkey Kong Country (game)

From the Nintendo Wiki, a wiki covering all things Nintendo
Jump to navigationJump to search

It has been requested that this article be rewritten. Reason: remove uses of the world "you" and fill in missing details in general

This article is about the original Super Nintendo Entertainment System game. For the Game Boy Color remake, see Donkey Kong Country (Game Boy Color). For the Game Boy Advance remake, see Donkey Kong Country (Game Boy Advance).
Donkey Kong Country (game)
Developer Rare Ltd.
Publisher Nintendo
Platform(s) Super Famicom/Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Virtual Console (Wii, Wii U, New 3DS), Super NES Classic Edition, Super Nintendo Entertainment System - Nintendo Switch Online
Release date SNES:
UK November 18, 1994[1]
USA November 21, 1994[2]
Japan November 26, 1994[3]
Europe 1994
Virtual Console (Wii):
Australia December 7, 2006
Europe December 8, 2006
Japan December 12, 2006
USA February 19, 2007
South Korea May 26, 2008
Virtual Console (Wii U):
Europe October 16, 2014
Australia October 17, 2014
Japan November 26, 2014
USA February 26, 2015
Virtual Console (New 3DS):
Japan March 4, 2016
USA March 24, 2016
Europe March 24, 2016
Australia March 25, 2016
Super NES Classic Edition:
USA September 29, 2017
Europe September 29, 2017
Australia September 30, 2017
Japan October 5, 2017
Super Nintendo Entertainment System - Nintendo Switch Online:
Japan July 15, 2020[4]
USA July 15, 2020[5]
Europe July 15, 2020[6]
Australia July 15, 2020[7]
HK July 15, 2020[8]
South Korea July 15, 2020[9]
Genre Platformer
ESRB:File:ESRB KA 1996.svg - Kids to Adults
(original release)
ESRB: - Everyone
(Virtual Console release)
PEGI: - Three years and older
CERO: - All ages
Mode(s) 1–2 players
Super NES:
Game Pak
Digital download
Wii U:
Digital download
Nintendo Switch:
Digital download
Nintendo 3DS:
Digital download
Super NES Classic Edition:
Super NES:
Wii U:
Nintendo Switch:
Nintendo 3DS:
SNES Classic Edition:
Next title Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest

Donkey Kong Country (titled Super Donkey Kong in Japan) is a Super Nintendo Entertainment System video game which was developed by Rare Ltd. and published by Nintendo. It was originally released in 1994. The game revived the Donkey Kong franchise, and it was both the first and titular installment of the Donkey Kong Country series. The game follows Donkey Kong and his nephew Diddy Kong as they go on a journey throughout Donkey Kong Island to reclaim their bananas from the Kremlings and their leader, King K. Rool.

In 1995, a complimentary Game Boy game was released, Donkey Kong Land. Shortly after, Donkey Kong Country also received two sequels for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest and Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!, released in 1995 and 1996 respectively. Several years later, in 2010, another sequel was released for the Wii, titled Donkey Kong Country Returns, which took heavy inspiration from Donkey Kong Country.

The game received a remake for the Game Boy Color and the Game Boy Advance, released in 2000 and in 2003 respectively.

Donkey Kong Country was first ported on the Virtual Console for the Wii in late 2006 and early 2007. It was also ported to the Wii U Virtual Console in 2014 (2015 in North America) and for the New Nintendo 3DS's Virtual Console in 2016. Donkey Kong Country was also included as one of the 21 titles on the Super NES Classic Edition. On July 15, 2020, Donkey Kong Country was ported to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System - Nintendo Switch Online.


Instruction booklet[edit]

Pages 4–7 of the instruction booklet detail the game's backstory.

One dark and stormy night, Donkey Kong had assigned Diddy with the task of watching over the Banana Hoard beneath his tree house. Diddy was all alone and waited for Donkey Kong to relieve him of his duties by midnight. The thoughts of Donkey Kong's instructions cycled through his head. Meanwhile, the Kremlings were outside, eyeing the banana stockpile within the Banana Hoard, and they desired to take all of the bananas, which they found to be the perfect snack food. The rustling sound in the undergrowth and the sound of several snapping twigs made by the Kremlings caught Diddy's notice. Diddy saw several Kremlings and proceeded to cartwheel into some of them, only to be overpowered and knocked out by a Klump, who then trapped Diddy inside of a DK Barrel and kicked it outside. The Kremlings proceeded to load up their karts with the bananas and wheeled them through Donkey Kong Island. A long trail of bananas was left behind from the path that the Kremlings took.

The following morning, Donkey Kong was awoken by the sound of his name. Donkey Kong took notice of the time and proceeded to fall out of bed and slide down the ladder outside of his tree house. Donkey Kong rolled over and saw his grandfather, Cranky Kong (the original Donkey Kong from the 1980s arcade games within the franchise). Cranky cackled as he told Donkey Kong to look in the Banana Hoard, where he would be in for a "big surprise." In doing so, Donkey Kong found that his entire stash of bananas had gone missing, with only a few discarded peels remaining on the ground. Cranky pointed out to Donkey Kong that Diddy is also missing and that these are the consequences for his irresponsibility. At first, Donkey Kong was in disbelief, and knowing that the Kremlings were behind the operation, Donkey Kong furiously stated that he will hunt down the Kremlings until he has reclaimed every stolen banana.

As Donkey Kong prepared to start his journey, Cranky showed a lack of support by complaining about the game's premise, the lack of a damsel-in-distress, and boasting about how popular the arcade games were. Cranky also tells Donkey Kong that he will never be as successful and, breaking the fourth wall, also tells Donkey Kong that he would be lucky if Donkey Kong Country sold even ten copies. Cranky's rambling angers Donkey Kong, who insists that he is going to rescue Diddy and reclaim his stolen bananas. Donkey Kong then leaves to follow after the trail of bananas left behind by the Kremlings. Shortly after, Cranky decides to follow after Donkey Kong, whom he suspects will need his help along the way, and mumbles that kids lack respect toward their elders.


You progress as you normally would when playing a side-scrolling game. However, Donkey Kong Country has a tag-team system that was unique when it first came out. Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong could be switched at any time in the game. When one Kong was hit, he "died" and the other took over. Once they are both gone, a life is lost. The two have different abilities and strengths; Donkey Kong could slap the ground and unveil secrets and defeat stronger enemies, while Diddy is faster and can jump higher.

There are six worlds in the game. Each world has a different look with different terrain, along with different levels in each world. Donkey and Diddy have to reach the end of the level and can collect bananas (100 would give an extra life), extra life balloons, collect the KONG Letters which gives you an extra life when all four letters are found, or obtain animal tokens which would send them to an animal partner themed bonus level along the way. The Kongs can defeat enemies simply by jumping on them. The Kongs can also throw barrels, slap the ground to turn enemies into a banana, or roll/cartwheel to knock them out.

Supporting characters[edit]


  • Cranky Kong: the grumpy grandfather of Donkey Kong who offers advice amidst his ranting about the glory days of video gaming. He is the original Donkey Kong from the game of the same name.
  • Funky Kong: a surfer who offers the Kongs a ride in his Jumbo Barrel, allowing them to travel between worlds that they have already visited.
  • Candy Kong: the girlfriend of Donkey Kong; her Save Barrel allows Donkey and Diddy to save their game progress.

Animal Friends[edit]

Throughout their adventure, Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong encounter Animal Friends who can help them in their adventure. Each Animal Friend is found in an Animal Crate depicting a silhouette of their head. They help the Kongs defeat enemies and find bonus rooms. An Animal Friend can possibly use a strong attack that the Kongs are incapable of doing themselves.

  • Rambi: A powerful rhino who can charge enemies and break through fragile walls, leading to a Bonus Level in most cases.
  • Expresso: An ostrich who could hover and run very fast, but could not jump on enemies.
  • Enguarde: A swordfish (obviously only in water areas) who could charge and skewer enemies with his nose.
  • Winky: A frog who could jump very high, and kill Zingers by jumping on them.
  • Squawks: A parrot who only appeared in one level and could not be ridden. He holds a flashlight to help the Kongs explore the dark cavern.


  • Army: An armadillo enemy who is invulnerable to Diddy's jumping attack but can be defeated by Donkey Kong jumping on it.
  • Bitesize: A green fish who swims around underwater.
  • Chomps: A large, light green shark enemy who act essentially the same way as Bitesizes aside from being larger in size.
  • Chomps Jr.: A smaller, light blue variant of Chomps. They behave similarly to Bitesizes and Chomps.
  • Clambo: A clam enemy who attacks by spitting out pearls. They cannot be defeated, even by Enguarde.
  • Croctopus: A purple octopus who swims in a set pattern, often in tight spaces. There are also blue Croctopuses who chase the Kongs up to a certain point. Like Clambo, they cannot be defeated by Enguarde.
  • Gnawty: A green beaver which only walks in a straight line, similar to how Goombas act in the Super Mario series. In the temple levels, there are red Gnawtys who ride on a millstone.
  • Klaptrap: A light blue, quadrupedal crocodile enemy with a pair of sharp teeth. Klaptraps have a rare purple counterpart that jumps whenever the Kongs do.
  • Klump: A large, bulky Kremling who wears a green military hat, which protects it from Diddy's jumping attack, but Donkey Kong can still damage Klump this way.
  • Kritter: The most basic type of Kremling and the main troops of the Kremling Krew. The standard green Kritters only move in a line, but they also have brown, blue, and gray counterparts, each having a difference in their jumping behavior; brown Kritters jump from side to side, blue Kritters jump after every few steps that they take, and gray Kritters only jump in a single spot.
  • Krash: A variant of Kritter who rides in a Mine Cart.
  • Krusha: A muscular, dark blue enemy that is more sturdy than Klump. Diddy cannot defeat it by himself, even from his Cartwheel Attack. There are gray Krushas who can only be defeated by throwing a barrel at them.
  • Manky Kong: Traitorous members of the Kong Family who attack by throwing barrels in Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong's direction.
  • Mini-Necky: Small counterparts of Necky who attack by spitting out nuts at the Kongs.
  • Necky: They are large, brown-feathered vultures. There are two types of Neckys, including those who fly in a straight direction and those who throw nuts while perched.
  • Rockkroc: One of the toughest enemies, Rockkrocs have skin that is made out of rock, and they run back and forth very fast. A Rockkroc's movement is controlled by Stop & Go Barrels, which are set to "GO" by default, but setting it to "STOP" causes every Rockkroc to curl into a ball up until the Stop & Go Barrels reactivate. Rockkrocs cannot be defeated, but in the Japanese version, Donkey Kong can defeat them using his Hand Slap.
  • Slippa: Red coral snake-like enemies who slither along the ground.
  • Squidge: They are light blue squid-like enemies who often move in zigzag patterns.
  • Zinger: Yellow wasp enemies who can only be defeated by either throwing a barrel at it, by attacking it with Rambi, or by jumping on it with Winky. Zingers have several color variants, including green, orange, and red, each having a different flight pattern.


  • Very Gnawty: A large Gnawty who is fought as the boss of Kongo Jungle.
  • Master Necky: A large pink Mini-Necky who is only ever seen by his head. He is fought as the boss of Monkey Mines.
  • Queen B.: A large Zinger who is fought as the boss of Vine Valley.
  • Really Gnawty: A large, red Gnawty who can jump higher than his earlier counterpart, Very Gnawty. He is the boss of Gorilla Glacier.
  • Dumb Drum: A large black drum who releases two enemies of a certain type for the Kongs to defeat. It is the boss of Kremkroc Industries Inc..
  • Master Necky Snr.: He is similar to Master Necky but is purple in color. He is fought as the boss of Chimp Caverns.
  • King K. Rool: He is the main antagonist and the leader of the Kremling Krew. King K. Rool is fought on his pirate ship, the Gangplank Galleon.


These barrels can be used as objects:

  • Barrel: Regular barrels that can be picked up and thrown at enemies.
  • DK Barrel: If Donkey or Diddy is the only Kong active, they can break a DK Barrel to free the missing Kong. Aside from this, a DK Barrel is used in the same fashion as a regular barrel.
  • Steel Barrel: These can roll along the ground and do not break upon hitting an enemy. Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong can jump on to a rolling Steel Barrel to travel quickly through the level.
  • TNT Barrel: A barrel that explodes if thrown on the ground. These are capable of destroying some of the stronger enemies.

There are two types of barrels that cannot be carried but assist the Kongs through other means:

  • Barrel Cannon: The Kongs can climb into one of the these to blast in the direction that the Barrel Cannon is facing. Barrel Cannons are usually found over wide pits, and in such cases, Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong must blast through a series of them to travel across. Some Barrel Cannons move back and forth vertically or horizontally when climbed into, some at a faster speed than others, and some Barrel Cannons can change the direction that they are facing.
  • Continue Barrel: Breaking one open allows Donkey and Diddy to continue the level from where they left off if they lose an extra life. A Continue Barrel is usually found halfway through a level.


As with most platforming titles, Donkey Kong Country is divided into areas called worlds, which contain a set of levels with a variety of settings. The game has six worlds, which are each accessed from the Donkey Kong Island map.

  1. Kongo Jungle: The first world of the game and the location of Donkey Kong's treehouse and banana hoard. The world is a tropical rainforest. Donkey and Diddy progress through a jungle, a rainy jungle, a cave, a pond, a cliff, and finally reach the boss. The world's boss is Very Gnawty. He jumps back and forth. You must jump on him to defeat him whilst avoiding him. Four hits kill him.
  2. Monkey Mines: This world looks like the outside of a mine. The kongs progress through a mine, caves, an ancient ruin, and finally reach the boss. The world's boss is Necky, who spits out nuts. You must use a tire to jump on his head after he finishes spitting out nuts.
  3. Vine Valley: This world is a dense forest in the middle of the island. The Kongs progress through forests, a tree civilization, another ancient ruin, a pond, and a jungle before reaching the boss. The boss of this world is Queen B. You must throw barrels at hewr, causing him to turn red and become invincible. Repeat this a few times to defeat Queen B.
  4. Gorilla Glacier: An icy themed world. The kongs progress through snowy landscapes, icy caves, dry caves, and another tree civilization before reaching the boss. The boss of this world is Really Gnawty, who is fought the same way as Very Gnawty in Kongo Jungle.
  5. Kremkroc Industries Inc.: An industrial area at the northern end of the island. The land looks polluted and contains factories. The kongs progress through factories, caves, and a polluted pond. The boss of this world is Dumb Drum. Dumb Drum pours out enemies which Donkey and Diddy must defeat until the boss self-destructs.
  6. Chimp Caverns: This world is a cave area on the northern-most tip of the island. The duo progress through caves before reaching the boss. The boss of this world is Master Necky Snr., who is fought in a similar fashion as Master Necky.

The seventh area on the Donkey Kong Island map, titled Gang-Plank Galleon, is not a world but rather a pirate ship where the final battle against King K. Rool takes place. Defeating him completes the game.


50 Lives

At the game select screen, move down so that the text "Erase Game" is highlighted. Press B, A, R, R, A, L. The player will get a confirmation noise and the next game that the player starts will automatically have 50 lives.

Stop and Go Station Shortcut

At the beginning of the level Stop & Go Station, go into the door where the player's character entered. The player will be transported to a spot near the end of the level.

Mine Cart Carnage Shortcut

At the beginning of the level Mine Cart Carnage, instead of jumping into the barrel at the beginning, jump over it and curve back around to the wall. The player will be shot across most of the level. This shortcut, however, has a nasty tendency to fail if the player does not fall in just the right place.


Donkey Kong Country has a popular soundtrack which was released on CD under the title DK Jamz. Composers Robin Beanland, Eveline Fischer, and Dave Wise contributed to the music of the video game.

Differences between versions[edit]

There are several versions of the game available for the Super Nintendo.

Version 1.0

This was the first version. There were many glitches in the game, though they did not affect the gameplay.

Versions 1.1 and 1.2

Some bugs have been fixed in these revisions and more in version 1.2.

Donkey Kong Country Competition Cartridge

  • A timer and point meter were added to the top of the screen, showing how much play time and how many points the player has, respectively. The time limit is 5 minutes.
  • All maps have been removed; exiting a level will immediately lead into the next one. So the first thing the player sees after the SNES boots up is the beginning of the first level, with no title screen.
  • The level order is different, and some were omitted entirely.
  • When the timer reaches zero, the game "crashes". The screen freezes, but the level's background music will continue playing. The purpose being that nothing about the game would change, but the official had plenty of time to take note of the player's score. A reset (or power cycle) was required in order to allow the game to be played again.


The game was renowned for its use of pre-rendered 3D graphics, especially on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Many later 3D video games would also use pre-rendered 3D together with fully 3D objects. Rare took significant financial risks in purchasing the expensive Silicon Graphics equipment used to render the graphics. Both Nintendo and Rare refer to the technique for creating the game's graphics as "ACM" (Advanced Computer Modeling).

Shigeru Miyamoto once criticized Donkey Kong Country, stating that "Donkey Kong Country proves that players will put up with mediocre gameplay as long as the art is good." Miyamoto later apologized, saying he had been too harsh due to Nintendo's pressuring him at the time to make Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island more like Donkey Kong Country.[10]


Donkey Kong Country is one of Nintendo's most successful games and was available as a pack-in game in the Super Nintendo "Donkey Kong Set" which contained the console, a controller, and the game.

The title also received Game of the Year honors from EGM for 1994 although it is now considered by the magazine to be one of the most overrated games of all time.

Donkey Kong Country has also sold over 8.5 million copies, making it the second best-selling video game for the Super Nintendo.


  1. ^ Rare. Donkey Kong Country. Rarewhere (Internet Archive: Wayback Machine). Retrieved August 2, 2020.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ Nintendo 公式チャンネル (July 8, 2020). ファミリーコンピュータ & スーパーファミコン Nintendo Switch Online 追加タイトル [2020年7月]. YouTube. Retrieved July 8, 2020.
  5. ^ Nintendo (July 8, 2020). NES & Super NES - July Game Updates - Nintendo Switch Online. YouTube. Retrieved July 8, 2020.
  6. ^ @NintendoEurope (July 8, 2020). "More #SuperNES and #NES games will arrive on 15/07 for #NintendoSwitchOnline members, including the 1994 classic #DonkeyKong Country!" Twitter. Retrieved July 8, 2020.
  7. ^ @NintendoAUNZ (July 12, 2020). "More #SuperNES and #NES games will arrive on 15/07 for #NintendoSwitchOnline members, including the 1994 classic #DonkeyKong Country!" Twitter. Retrieved July 12, 2020.
  8. ^ Nintendo. Family Computer & Super Famicom - Nintendo Switch Online Nintendo HK. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
  9. ^ Nintendo. NES & Super NES - Nintendo Switch Online (Shown in Copyrights) Nintendo Korea. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
  10. ^ Steven L. Kent. The Ultimate History of Video Games: From Pong to Pokémon--The Story Behind the Craze That Touched Our Lives and Changed the World

Template:DK stub