Donkey Kong (NES) Retro Review

Donkey Kong is a 1986 arcade game for the NES developed and published by Nintendo. The goal is for mario to get to where Donkey Kong is while dodging the things he throws (e.g. barrels) by either climbing and letting them pass underneath, hitting them with the hammer power up or jumping over them (the latter 2 gets you points).


Loading the game you are met with the simplistic title screen alot of old Nintendo games had and a small but pretty nice tune (which I’m convinced reappeared in Donkey Kong Country as part of another tune). Like pinball the difference between A and B was merely difficulty which some might find a bit disappointing. In fact in 2 player both seemingly take turns with Mario with no Luigi aka ‘Green Mario’ in sight which seemed a bit weird but it was ultimately part of the plot.

This screenshot is 1/4 of the game...

Getting into the game i felt the graphics and music were both ok but the sound effects for moving (walking, climbing, jumping etc) were actually very annoying. The gameplay itself was actually quite fun though even if there was only 4 stages in the game. In terms of the first level it was highly satisfying when you managed to jump over barrels and even when you destroyed them. You could also dodge barrels by staying near the top of ladders but you then had to look out for barrels rolling above you making it a very intense situation. Either way i really enjoyed what little there was.

Overall its an ok game and i would at least recommend people that haven’t played it before to give it a try. However its replayability isn’t that great unless you’re aiming for a high score.


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