Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze | Game Review

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Originally released for the Wii U back in 2014, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze was an almost perfect platformer, that received top marks across the board! However due to the console’s poor sales, it’s likely a lot of people got to play it. Well now the simian with a knack for stylish neckwear has swung his way onto the Switch with this re-release of the great ape’s chillest adventure yet! Did it get cold in here? The story begins with DK and the rest of the Kong clan celebrating the big guy’s birthday, before rudely being interrupted by a shipload of frosty looking fiends, who put a freeze on the festivities and send the family flying… Those poor primates, there’s always someone crashing their party! I know right?! So DK must now leap, dive, roll, slide and blast his way back home across a total of 6 island stages. Luckily he’s not alone with the rest of the gang here to help – Diddy has his jetpack that helps you glide across large gaps, Dixie can spin her ponytail for some extra lift, and Cranky has his pogo walking stick to bounce over obstacles and through spike pits! Each extra Kong also ups your heart total, so best look after your barrel buddies! Speaking of buddies, the new addition in this Switch version is a new playable Kong… Funky Kong. I take it your not a fan? Well here’s the thing Gem, Funky Kong is basically just an easy mode with an insane list of extra abilities, He can double jump, roll and spin underwater forever, hold his breath forever, he has THREE extra hearts, can hover on his surfboard and he can even use it to stand on spikes without taking damage! It takes almost all the challenge out of the game… Yeah, he is particularly overpowered, but I think he’s there for newcomers to the series who might find it a bit difficult. No, see that’s my point, Gem, is that one of the best things about this game IS the difficulty. Everything from the enemy design to the clever layout of the levels is done with a focus on perfecting your platforming skills to make you better at the game, and without that difficulty the game loses so much of its charm. Well this is known as a particularly tough game, so I didn’t mind the addition of Funky mode too much,
because that’s just what it is: an extra mode. it’s still bugging you isn’t it? I mean, he’s just such a crappy Kong! And that radical surfer dude look is SO out of date and just trying too hard! I mean you can’t just slap a pair of sunglasses on a classic character and expect them to suddenly be COOL Yo yo dudes! -NOT NOW DARREN!
-Catch you on the flip side. Ok ok I think you’ve made your point. Aside from Funky mode, the rest of the game remains largely untouched which is good news! The levels are all just as creative and inventive, adding interesting mechanics and gameplay twists with each new stage, and the changing design to each new island brings with it a fresh set of foes and some unforgettable boss battles! Co-op mode is also available if you want to monkey around with a mate, plus you can go back to completed stages to compete in a time attack once you’ve really mastered that momentum! It is still some of the best level design I’ve ever played in a platformer, even after sinking some serious hours into the WiiU version I was surprised at how fresh this felt to playthrough again. However, the problem with any good re-release is that lurking feeling that I’d much rather be playing a wholly new game rather than replaying this one. Ah now that’s where we differ because I never played this so it was ALL new for me and I’m glad to say I had a blast! And we can only hope that Nintendo are planning a new DK adventure and this is just to keep the fans happy in the meantime. Fingers (and opposable thumbs crossed) But what are you rating this one Goose? Well Gem if you can’t tell by now, I have a particular soft spot for the Donkey Kong Country series ever since I played the original on Super Nintendo 14 years ago! So of course I was excited to have a version to play on my Switch, but in this case, I do feel the addition of an easy mode like Funky kind of spoils it a bit for me, and I really hope he doesn’t become a permanent feature going forward. Still, I’m gonna give this 4 out of 5 rubber chickens. Well I’m not as fussed about Funky as you are, and I think this adventure is the perfect example of everything the DK series has to offer. I’m just really excited more people get to go visit Kong country! I’m giving it 4.5 out of 5 rubber chickens! -What was Darren wearing?
-I have no idea. -That was not a good look.
-Don’t do it again, ever.


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