The Mezunian

Die Positivität ist das Opium des Volkes, aber der Spott ist das Opium der Verrückten

Worst to Best Levels – Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest, Part 1

There are generally 2 popular opinions regarding Donkey Kong Country: those who only really know the 1st game ( which seems to have included Retro Studios when they made the 1st Donkey Kong Country Returns, as it only e’er referenced that game, but includes many other people as well ) & those who recognize Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest as the magnum opus o’ the trilogy ( there are, ’course, a minority who vouch for the other games, & I myself am a minority in preferring the contentious 3 o’er 1 ). While the 1st Donkey Kong Country had visuals so good it killed 64-bit consoles & began to build the general level design principles for the series, with its strange gimmick levels & fast-paced precisely-timed challenges, in many ways it felt like a warmup, being mostly traditional platforming in traditional video game settings like forests & caves. With Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest the developers clearly took advantage o’ the time not spent creating the whole engine wholly this time by perfecting these elements: graphics became e’en mo’ detailed & mo’ colorful; music became mo’ varied & mo’ memorable; traditional settings were replaced with pirate ships, rollercoaster rides, &, most iconically, bramble nests; & mo’ surreal gimmicks were implemented, such as seals that can turn lava into water by hitting them or honey that makes you stick to it. Mechanics that returned were developed with further gameplay twists: mine carts were turned into rollercoaster cars & you weren’t just avoiding obstacles, but also hitting switches to open doors or winning races. Fewer levels were linear left-to-right, with mo’ vertical levels & levels that go in mo’ complex paths.

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Posted in Video Games, Worst to Best Levels