Electronic Theatre Preview: Donkey Kong Country Returns

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            Undoubtedly one of the highlights of Nintendo’s Pre-E3 2010 Press Conference, Retro Studios’ revisit to RARE’s captivating 16-bit Platform series marks the next stage of Nintendo’s bridge building between markets. A traditional 2D Platform title which features a recognisable gaming mascot and a simple interface, in marketing terms Donkey Kong Country Returns is New Super Mario Bros.’ successor in all but name, but in play it’s a return to RARE’s classic Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) formula.

            Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong are back as a team as Donkey Kong Country Returns most certainly reflects the very first Donkey Kong Country. Jungle Hijinx, the opening stage, was available Electronic Theatre Imageat E3 along with a number of other familiar feeling levels, and the basic mechanics of the game are almost exactly that of the original title, though Donkey Kong’s abilities are based on performing various gestures with the Wii Remote. The same hidden bonus areas, KONG pieces and barrels are featured, along with many returning enemies. Donkey Kong Country Returns is the fourth title in the home console Donkey Kong Country series, and it’s really as simple as that.

            A new ability brought with this title is that of Diddy Kong’s hovering. Grabbing Donkey Kong, Diddy take’s to the air briefly transporting them both across pits and onto enemies. The best estimated guess would be that in two-player, the Electronic Theatre Imagesecond Wii Remote would be granted control at the point of take-off, though this is not confirmed at present. Diddy also has a ground pound move available this time around.

            One of the most surprising elements of Donkey Kong Country Returns is just how good it looks. Easily one of the most attractive Wii games at the show, Donkey Kong Country Returns further proves Retro Studios’ mastery of Nintendo’s hardware, and validates the publisher’s confidence in the Texas based developer’s abilities. Donkey Kong Country Returns is currently expected to launch late in 2010, and Electronic Theatre will be certain keep you updated on the game’s progress.



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