With the Year of Luigi coming to an end in March and the yearly nomination up for grabs, it is time we choose our next candidate. By all means, who would be worthy of such a title? I know of a giant ape that can smash and lift lots of things, perhaps he would be strong enough to uphold such a title?
Throughout the start of 2014, Donkey Kong has received arguably more attention than any character from the Donkey Kong franchise has gotten in close to ten years. With the release of Donky Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Donkey Kong has been jolted back to stardom. There’s many reasons why DK should be nominated for the next yearly title. Let’s discuss some of these.
Bad ape gone good.
If we rummage through old boxes full of gray cartridges to find an old copy of the original Donkey Kong, blow the dust out of the cartridge, and fire up that old musty-smelling Nintendo we can get back to DK’s roots. The game revolves around a giant ape, who stole a damsel in distress, throwing giant barrels down at a mustached man trying to get to the top of platforms to save the damsel. When compared to today’s conception of DK, he’s less angry (he’s probably living the lavish life of a famous banana junkie after all the money he made for that first game). He’s a good ape these days. Any more, the guy is just trying to save his friends and DK Island. If this were some cheap sports awarding ceremony, Donkey Kong would probably get most improved.
Woven into heart of Nintendo
Of many things that Nintendo is good at, one cannot forget their ability to compile all of their characters together for one heck of a party. From Mario Kart to Super Smash Brothers, Donkey Kong has been right in the middle of things, ready to rock and roll. For someone who started out as a bad guy and turned good, gaining his own franchise, and being the hero of his dystopian world that he’s always trying to protect or save, Donkey has cast some pretty deep roots into the world of Nintendo. Mario should probably write DK a letter thanking him for making Mario even more of the famous good guy than he already was. Nearly every Nintendo console has had a game that DK can be played as. Many have the misconception that Mario is Nintendo, and they are not wrong… totally. All characters are representative of Nintendo… some bigger than others, but Donkey Kong is definitely a big part of Nintendo. He’s always lived in Mario and others’ shadow, so let’s bring him to the spotlight!
Breathing life back into the WiiU
The release of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze has put Nintendo back into minds of gamers around the world, and for much more positive reasons than what has been circulating lately. Many have talked and discussed what may be a shaky fate of Nintendo, but Tropical Freeze has reassured people that Nintendo is playing for keeps. Donkey Kong and his latest installment have sparked quite a bit of interest for mixing things up a bit, yet bringing back an old favorite of multiple generations.
So, Donkey Kong has made leaps and bounds of progress as an Nintendo character, finding his way into the house hold of so many people, been woven into the many fibers of what represents Nintendo as a whole, and brought a flair of life back to a struggling Nintendo Console. He sounds like a pretty credible character to have a year named after him. “Year of the Ape”… I like that. Besides, do you want to be the one to tell a giant ape who has a history of kidnapping, anger issues, and reckless driving that he can’t have a year named after him?
Don't let cyber attacks kill your game! Join GamesBeat's Dean Takahashi for a free webinar on April 18 that will explore the DDoS risks facing the game industry. Sign up here.