Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D

Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D is a wonderful port of a great game from the Wii.

By Grayshadow, Posted 25 May 2013

Donkey Kong Country Returns has found new life on the Nintendo 3DS in Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D. The difficult, but fair, platformer showcased that if a core concept is strong enough then new mechanics were unnecessary. This port is held back by the 3DS’s limitations, but adds new levels and lessens the difficulty. Joining DK and Diddy as they travel throughout this varied land in search of their stolen bananas is an amazing adventure for those seeking challenge and wonder.

The story of Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D is simple and only provides a reason for Donkey Kong’s adventure. DK and Diddy’s precious banana supply has been stolen and their animal allies are hypnotized by creatures known as Tikis. Their objective is simply to travel across the world to get back their precious fruits and defeat all the Tikis leaders.

The Wii motion controls have been removed and altered to accommodate the 3DS. The analog stick and button placement made it feel like I was playing on Donkey Kong Country on my SNES, but you have the option of the control pad if you want. Donkey Kong has a simple array of moves that include running, jumping, and throwing barrels. Breaking a specially labeled barrel will allow DK to team with his partner Diddy, who can use his barrel pack to hover in mid-air for a small duration to reach new areas. But sometimes Diddy isn’t enough and DK may require help from his animal buddy Rambi the Rhino to aid in his adventure. The title does host local cooperative play where one player can control either Diddy or DK, but it’s more prudent to play the game alone since a partner usually complicates things.

Donkey Kong Country Returns, 3D, Review, Trailer, Nintendo, Platformer

The stages are wonderfully designed and rearrange layouts keep each stage fresh. You’ll run eight twisted levels ranging from dense forests, loud factories, and boiling volcanos while attempting to master each level to collect every banana and each letter to spell out KONG. Every stage is littered with hazards from enemies impeding your path to large waves surging in the background. The unpredictable level design and hidden secrets create a delicate balance of caution and wonder as you attempt to make it through each stage while looking for every secret hidden away in the dark corners.

The soundtrack is just as amazing as the original title. The music complements each stage, igniting feelings of nostalgia and excitement, as DK ventures through each area with his signature grunts and chest pounding animations. The soothing melody as you run through the sandy beaches and the stirring beat when you board a flying barrel sets the mode and motivates you into completing each level. It’s the perfect balance of classic music and new additions that make the sound stand out on its own.

Donkey Kong Country Returns, 3D, Review, Trailer, Nintendo, Platformer

As you might suspect in order to get a Wii title to work on the 3DS sacrifices had to be made. The frame rate of Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D is reduced from the Wii’s 60 frames per second to 30, which in certain situations can cause hitches that lead to annoying deaths, especially when precision is paramount. In addition, the lush colors and crisp environmental are absent in this version. While those unfamiliar with the original title won’t take notice to the visuals it is an understandable downgrade.

Unlike the original game, the Nintendo 3DS version’s difficultly can be altered. The optional “New Mode” allows the player to access certain handicaps such as extra health and balloons to save you from falling. These can be purchased from Cranky Kong’s shop in exchange for coins that you collect throughout the game. If you die enough times an auto-play function will take control and run through the course for you. But those looking to play the challenging original game can choose “Original Mode,” which is the Wii version of the game.

Donkey Kong Country Returns, 3D, Review, Trailer, Nintendo, Platformer

Nintendo didn’t downgrade the frame rate and graphics of the game without offering something in exchange. The 3D version host an extra world called the Golden Temple that includes eight new levels that will challenge even the most seasoned Donkey Kong player. These weren’t added to extend the already lengthy adventure, but feel like they belong in the title. In addition, a series of time trials, a local cooperative option, a large amount of collectables, and the Mirror mode will keep you busy in DK’s latest adventure.

Of course this is a Nintendo 3DS title and if you choose to do so you can play the game using the 3D function. While the game does demonstrate an excellent depth-of-field it isn’t as impressive of other titles in the Nintendo 3DS library like Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon or Star Fox 64 3D. But certain events, like shooting through the air into multiple barrels, is a visual treat with the 3D function on.

Donkey Kong Country Returns, 3D, Review, Trailer, Nintendo, Platformer

Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D is a wonderful port of a great game from the Wii. While the game doesn’t have the same visual and frame rate quality as the original the title the extra content and easy mode makes up for these issues. If you’re looking something to quell your nostalgia while being challenge by some intense gameplay for on the go than look no further than Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
Twitter | YouTube | Facebook

comments powered by Disqus


General Information

Platform(s): WII, 3DS
Publisher(s): Nintendo
Developer(s): Retro Studios, Nintendo, Monster Games
Genres: Platformer
Themes: Action
Release Date: 2010-11-21

View All

Popular Articles