Donkey Kong: King of Swing
The ape is back with a swing in his step!
Preview by Chris Bahn (Email)
September 17th 2004
Donkey Kong has definitely made his presence known this year, appearing in a several titles spanning both the GameCube and Game Boy Advance systems. In his latest handheld action title, Donkey Kong and friends take the platforming engine and transformed the conventional concept of platform games into a new, unique and challenging spin that’s bound to intrigue fans and newcomers alike.
In DK: King of Swing, players must guide Donkey Kong and family through several challenging levels in an heroic effort to retrieve a special medallion stolen by King K. Rool. Naturally, Rool isn’t planning to give up his new treasure without a fight.
Those who are familiar with the classic puzzle game, Clu Clu Land will pick up on certain similiarities. Basically you’ll start from the bottom of the level and must successfully reach the top by lunging from branch to branch. DK is deceptively simple as you’ll need to strategically figure out which gears to spin in order to access other areas of the level, while grabbing bananas along the way and eluding King K. Rool’s minions attempting to impeded your progress. Using the L and R buttons correspond to Donkey Kong’s left and right hands respectively in order to grab pegs and then letting go to ascend to another peg. DK: King of Swing features many elements that take advantage of this unique game mechanic: Spinning left or right on a crank opens or closes doors, and spinning on bolts slowly loosens them until they pop out, making Donkey Kong lose his grip. Don’t let him fall, or you’ll need to start again.
Thankfully, DK’s got a few tricks up his fur such as the ability to use a charge tackle (temporary name) that will allow him to attack enemies by leaping and charging into them. In addition, players will want to master the art of building up momentum, allowing them to reach higher pegs located throughout the level. Better get used to those L and R buttons, they’re essential to every aspect of the game.
Like Mario vs. Donkey Kong, this is yet another handheld title that I missed out on during E3 due to time constraints. And although it’s not scheduled for release until sometime next year, this will be one GBA title I’ll be definitely keeping a close eye on when it swings into retail.