Review by IceQueenZer0

"An epic return welcomed with mixed feelings"

Overview
It's been a while since I last wrote a review. I figured I'd make a comeback with DKCR for the Nintendo Wii. I'll tell you now that this game is not for beginners. The plotline here is that the Tikis have hypnotized Donkey Kong's animals buddies and forced them to steal all of his bananas and Diddy takes off to stop them. Meanwhile, one Tiki tries to hypnotize Donkey Kong but alas, such tricks don't work on him and he ends up getting a beatdown from Donkey Kong with a little help from you of course. Now Donkey Kong is on the loose to retrieve his stolen bananas.

Graphics 10/10
Nintendo really outdid themselves with the graphics. It is so easy to get distracted by level design and the physics involved in the game. A good example is the use of the blow function where you can blow away dandelions to reveal hidden items. Then you can also slap the ground to knock away loose gravel beneath you or reveal hidden items. Although there is no swimming levels in the game, the levels with aquatic backgrounds (you are still above water), are truly interactive. Such as the Beach levels where the waves causes the bridge to do the "wave" itself and the mine cart levels are extremely challenging especially the one where you roll on the inside of a ball and have to avoid the spike when the crack in the ball rolls over it. Rambi the Rhino whom has been with the Kongs with the first game kicks major tail. Nothing can stand in his way. The end of level sequence is very odd but I'll let it slide since it still looks so cool.

Gameplay/Controls 8/10
You can either use a Wiimote by itself or use the Nunchuck. For realtime effects, I say use the nunchuck since its cooler to use the bongo motion than the "Rah Rah" motion of the Wiimote. Much like Sonic 4, Donkey Kong Country Returns used a lot of innovation in its newest game. That is, it takes advantage of stuff that memory restraints would've made impossible in the previous games. At least that the truth unlike Donkey Kong for the NES where they used that excuse to put 3 levels in the game instead of 4. But anyway, some pure examples of innovation is the blow function where you duck and drum/shake the controller. The drum function is an extension of Donkey's ground slap in DKC1. Players must be on there toes at all times because in some cases the controls can get real tricky to learn such as pressing 1 to grab things and drumming/shaking the remote while running to roll.

As stated before, this game is not really for beginners because even the first world (Jungle) will have you pulling your hair out. It took me a while to figure out how to beat the first boss. How was I to know to jump on its backside after leaping over it. After avoiding it for a few rounds, I finally got a hint to "bop now" which I didn't utilize until my next life. I just happened to jump on its back after it jumped past me and it still took me a few more lives to beat it since it simply would not die. Another thing I have to gripe about is the lack of Diddy's usefulness in this game. All he does is ride on Donkey's back. (Ride the donkey! JAJAJA!). The only thing he does is give Donkey and extra boost in jumping support and two more hits to take and that's it for him.

Sound/Music 10/10
Now the music is totally off the chain. You can't get any better than that in a game. Well maybe you can but you get my drift. The remix of the Jungle Theme had me jamming and I definitely loved the tune in 1-4 which is almost of a reprisal of the Jungle Theme. As always,
the Mine Cart level music gives the feeling of suspense like you can't tell what is coming next. In general, Nintendo did a good job of keeping the music jazzy. I definitely would buy a sound track for this game.

Replay Value 10/10
With many collectibles in the game like KONG letters and puzzle pieces, as well as gallery mode and time attack mode, it's worth playing again and again just for the fun. Even though I said this game is not for beginners, you can get through this game with lots of practice through trial and error.

Overall 9/10
I gave this game a 9 because it is totally awesome to play. I only had a beef with a few things: Diddy's virtual uselessness, bland power-ups, and most of all... Lack of Kremlings. How can you have a Donkey Kong Country game without Kremlings (especially K. Rool)? I hope they weren't property of RARE. But that's only minor. Donkey Kong Country Returns is a game well-suited for someone looking for a challenge. Hope you enjoy it.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 11/24/10

Game Release: Donkey Kong Country Returns (US, 11/21/10)


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