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Good game unless you've played the originals, or Tropical Freeze
on September 30, 2014
I grew up on the Super Nintendo, so I have a soft spot for the Donkey Kong Country trilogy. So I was excited to play this for both the Wii and 3DS.
Overall, the general spirit of the series is here. Donkey and Diddy are here along with some familiar supporting characters. Sadly, no Dixie. Kiddie Kong however is an acceptable omission, heh.
The game is pretty fun, especially hunting down all the secret rooms. But I have to admit I was disappointed in this game. As a veteran of the originals, this was hard to play. The controls were not as tight and smooth as I was accustomed to in previous games, the characters weren't as interesting, and the level design was significantly better in the originals.
If you've never played the original DKC trilogy, however, I could probably recommend this game as you would be more likely to enjoy it. Without the perfect controls and great atmosphere, story, and environments of the originals to compare to, this could be a fun and enjoyable game. But for me, it was frustrating. I'm a pretty experienced gamer, but often found the simplest jumps very frustrating to make, leading to many lost lives and level do-overs. And the game is not very forgiving to mistakes. A little bit more forgiving than the Wii version (easy mode was added here), but still very difficult at times. I enjoy intelligently difficult games, but this one is difficult in a more frustrating way (controls). The original DKC games were very difficult as well in parts, especially as you get towards the end of the game, but it was a fun difficult, where when you messed up you would think "Ah man, I screwed up." In this game though, the difficulty is more due to terrible controls and poor responsiveness.
The 3D effect is more extreme on this game, by far, than any other 3DS game I've tried. Since the 3DS has an adjustable 3D function to adjust this, that's not a problem, but it's something to be aware of. I love the heavy 3D personally, but sometimes when the slider is at max 3D, it can be a little straining, so I can see certain people not liking that.
My bottom line on this, is if you have a Wii U, skip this and get DKC Tropical Freeze, which is significantly more fun. Otherwise, this can be a good game for most, especially if you've never played the original trilogy. With how good Tropical Freeze is though, I fully expect future DKC games to continue with a high level of quality.