Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

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Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze
DKC-TF box.jpeg
Developer(s) Retro Studios
Monster Games[1]
Nintendo SPD Group No. 3
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Wii U
Release date Japan February 13, 2014
USA February 21, 2014[2]
Europe February 21, 2014[3]
Australia February 22, 2014[4]
Brazil March 20, 2014 [5]
Genre Platformer
ESRB:ESRB E.svg - Everyone
PEGI:PEGI 3.svg - Three years and older
CERO:CERO A.png - All ages
ACB:ACB G.svg - General
USK:USK 0.svg - All ages
Mode(s) Single player, Multiplayer
Wii U:
Media CD icon.png Optical disc
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Wii U:
Wiimote Sideways.png Wii Remote (Sideways)

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, known in Japan as Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze (ドンキーコングトロピカルフリーズ), is a side-scrolling 2.5D platform game developed by Retro Studios for the Wii U. It is the fifth game in the Donkey Kong Country series and the direct sequel to the Wii game Donkey Kong Country Returns. Dixie Kong and Cranky Kong appear as playable characters, similar to Diddy Kong's role in Donkey Kong Country Returns, while the main antagonists, the Snowmads, are based on stereotypical Vikings, and appear as animals such as penguins, walruses, and owls.

The game was originally slated for release during November 2013 before being pushed back to December 6; it was later pushed back again to February 2014.[6] It can be purchased at retail stores, or digitally from the Nintendo eShop, with the digital version requiring 11.3 GB of memory to be installed. Some models of the Wii U can't have this game downloaded due to the big amount of space.


The Kongs together celebrating Donkey Kong's Birthday.

The story begins at Donkey Kong's hut, where the Kongs are celebrating his birthday. Suddenly, one of the balloons flies off the Kong house and over the sea, where Snowmad ships are stationed. Far away from the island, a Pointy Tuck watches over them, locating the Kong house and relaying info to their leader, shrouded in a dark silhouette. Upon the leader nodding their approval, the Pointy Tucks bring him a horn which he blows, creating a large amount of wind, as well as an ice dragon.

DKCTF story2.png
Donkey Kong Island now a frozen wasteland.

Just as he is about to blow the candle out, Donkey Kong notices a mysterious snowflake appear and put out the candle on his birthday cake. He turns away with a frustrated look on his face as he hears an uproar, and he and the other Kongs exit the house. The ice dragon from earlier flies toward Donkey Kong Island, turning the sea under it to ice. The Kongs are then blown away from the island by the ice dragon's intense winds, landing on the Lost Mangroves island. Afterwards, a large ship stations itself where the Volcano from Donkey Kong Country Returns used to be, and the Snowmads seize Donkey Kong Island for their own, turning it into a frosty area with continuous snowfall.[7]

After traversing across 5 islands with each posing its own threats, the Kongs finally arrive at Donkey Kong Island under control of the Snowmads. The Kongs make their way through the frozen fortress until they encounter the leader of the Snowmads, Lord Fredrik, who challenges the Kongs to a final battle deep in the depths of the volcano. After a long battle, Donkey Kong delivers the final punch to Lord Fredrik, which sends him flying out through the roof of the Snowmad's ship, destroying it in the process. The Kongs wander out of the remains of the ship and look out from the mountainside to see the end of Lord Fredrik's fall. Lord Fredrik crashes into the remainder of the Snowmad ships out in the seas of the island, defeating the entire Snowmad clan and freeing the island from their control. Donkey Kong then notices the horn that was used to freeze their island fell out of Lord Fredrik's hands during his fall, which he catches and blows into, producing a breeze of flowers that carries the Kongs to the bottom of the island. The Kongs watch and rejoice as the breeze of the flowers flutter around the island, melting all of the ice and snow, returning Donkey Kong Island to its former glory.


The gameplay of the title is very similar to that of its predecessor, Donkey Kong Country Returns, but features more playable characters, including Dixie Kong who can use her ponytail to go up in midair and glide, and Cranky Kong who can use his cane to destroy some obstacles, such as Spikes. The game also presents ice and underwater levels, which were absent in Returns. The Kong's ability to swim has been restored, though it is much altered from the Mario-styled swimming controls present in the original trilogy. The Kongs are now given limited air while underwater, requiring them to seek out air bubbles to survive.

For the first time in the series, the camera angle can change dynamically in some levels where Blast Barrels or minecarts are found, showing more areas and perspectives of the scenery. A new feature in this game is the Kong POW attack, which turns all enemies on-screen into items. This move can only be performed when 100 bananas have been collected, and when there is another character on Donkey Kong's back.[8]

When the player has completed every level in the game, an additional game mode, Hard Mode, is unlocked. In Hard Mode, the player can use any of Donkey Kong's partners, but they will only get one heart, and can't use any items. Also, checkpoints are removed, and only one player can play.


Playable characters

Character Description Kong POW Ability
Donkey Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
  • The character the single or first player always controls, and also the heaviest.
  • He is shown to be able to water skip when rolling with another Kong on top of him.
  • Underwater, Donkey Kong is able to charge at enemies to defeat them.
Donkey Kong
Diddy Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
  • His jetpack returns, allowing him to hover in midair and get speed boosts underwater (this cannot defeat enemies).
  • His Peanut Popgun returns as well, working just like it did in the previous game.
Turns enemies into Red Balloons, which add lives.
Diddy Kong
Dixie Kong - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
  • Her ponytail allows her to get a short lift and fall slowly in midair.
  • Can be controlled more easily underwater using her hair as a propeller (this cannot defeat enemies). Secret exits can be found with her hair as well by going through currents.
  • Her new Bubble Gum Popgun can shoot bubble gums at enemies.
Turns enemies into Gold Hearts, which allow extra hits from enemies.
Dixie Kong
Cranky Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
  • His cane can be used to whack enemies, and as a pogo stick in order to jump higher and on spikes.
  • Can whack enemies underwater with his cane.
  • His new Denture Popgun shoots dentures at enemies.
Turns enemies into Banana Coins, which can be used to purchase items in Funky's Fly 'n' Buy.
Cranky Kong

Supporting characters

Character Role
Funky Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
Funky Kong
Runs the Funky's Fly 'n' Buy shop, which sells various items in exchange for Banana Coins, similarly to Cranky Kong's Shop from the previous installment.
Professor Chops[9]
Runs the checkpoint booths in each level as he did in Donkey Kong Country Returns.
Rambi DKCR.png
Rambi the Rhino
Rambi retains his role as the sole ridable Animal Friend. He can bash into enemies easier than the Kongs and can break some walls or other big objects that the Kongs cannot normally break. He can also defeat enemies by just walking into them. He is effective to lightning and runs away as he bumps into enemies.
Squawks DKCTF.png
Squawks the Parrot
Squawks retains his role as a purchasable item, and will warn the player if Puzzle Pieces are nearby during a stage.[10]



Worlds and levels

This article is under construction. Therefore, please excuse its informal appearance while it's being worked on. We hope to have it completed as soon as possible.

The game has seven total islands, consisting of six "main" islands and one secret island (Secret Seclusion), which serve as the game's worlds. Though the course of each world, the Kongs can visit Funky's Fly 'n' Buy item shop, where Funky Kong sells life balloons and other balloons, portable partner barrels, banana juice, hearts, crash guards, and figurines of characters in the game that a player can get at random through a capsule toy machine.

Lost Mangroves
Autumn Heights
Bright Savannah
Sea Breeze Cove
Juicy Jungle
Donkey Kong Island
Secret Seclusion


For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.


Main article: List of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze staff

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze notably marks the return of long-time Donkey Kong Country composer David Wise, whose last soundtrack for the series was for the Game Boy Advance version of Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! in 2005. Wise was specifically brought on board by Retro Studios president Michael Kelbaugh.[11]


Schnautzel Falls Into Background

When a player finds a Schnautzel near a Tuff Fluff in Horn Top Hop they need to make sure they that it's slightly facing the background and keep rolling into it. If done correctly, the Schnautzel will be knocked out falling into the background instead of the foreground.

References to other games

  • Donkey Kong: Donkey Kong's 8-bit sprite, holding a Wii U GamePad, appears at the end of Aqueduct Assault stage.
  • Donkey Kong Jr.: The levels in Secret Seclusion feature music that originated from this game.
  • Donkey Kong 3: At the second checkpoint of Fruity Factory, the background features a replica of the first stage.
  • Donkey Kong Country: The music theme "Aquatic Ambience"[12] is covered. In the Canopy Chaos level, Cranky's record player from this game can be found and when ground pounded in front of it, it plays this games' title theme.[13] The music theme "Jungle Groove" has two covers: one during the loading screens between levels and another during some levels. Part of the music in the level Frozen Frenzy contains a cover version of the music theme "Fear Factory". Part of the music in the Crumble Cavern level contains a cover version of "Cave Dweller Concert" from this game.
  • Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest: Dixie Kong returns from this game which marked her first appearance. Bramble levels, swamp levels and beehive levels return. The music theme Lockjaw Saga is covered.[14] Part of the music in the Frosty Fruit level contains a cover version of "In a Snowbound Land" music from this game. The music theme Stickerbush Symphony is covered. Part of the music in the level Frantic Fields contains a cover version of "Run, Rambi! Run!" from this game. One of Dixie Kong's idle animations in multiplayer involves her playing some air guitar could be a possible reference to her playing her electric guitar from this game. [15]
  • Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble: Water skipping returns. Part of the music in some secret levels contains a cover on Wrinkly's Save Cave (the one where she's sleeping) in this game.
  • Donkey Kong Country Returns: Being a direct sequel to this game, the levels in Secret Seclusion have a remix of the music from the single Golden Temple stage in this game (which itself was remixed from Donkey Kong Jr.). Also, the design of Donkey Kong Island is based off its appearance in this game; all of the worlds from this game can be seen. Finally, a number of sound effects from this game are used. In the level Blurry Flurry, Mega Squeekly has a cameo still alive in the background while frozen solid in an iceberg.[16] The giant Eyeball from Handy Hazards makes a cameo in the background of the level "Frozen Frenzy" frozen in place.[17] Mugly makes a cameo in the diorama of Donkey Kong Island frozen under the ground. In the level Rocking Relics, a part of the music has a cover of the Boombox beat from Donkey Kong's hut. Also, one of the logos seen in the cockpit of the plane Donkey Kong crashes into in the beginning of the game has the logo for this game. Snaps, an enemy from this game, makes a cameo in title screen like in the prequel.
  • Super Mario 3D Land: One of the games Donkey Kong plays on his Nintendo 3DS during his idle animation is this game. During the animation, he can be heard passing a Goomba and collecting a coin.
  • Mario Kart 7: Donkey Kong sometimes plays it during his idle animation. He is heard playing as himself, picking up a Super Leaf item, and avoiding a Green Shell.
  • Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D: The Crash Guard, Green Balloon, and Portable DK Barrels originated in this game. Also, this is one of the games Donkey Kong plays on his Nintendo 3DS during his idle animation. He is heard in Cranky Kong's Shop, as well as activating a secret path in a level.

References in later games

  • Super Smash Bros. for Wii U: A number of Snowmads appear as Trophies. Additionally, the music that plays in Mangrove Cove and in every second temple level are playable in the Jungle Hijinxs stage under the names "Mangrove Cove" and "Swinger Flinger" respectively, despite the latter originally playing in the level Bopopolis and every second level after that.


External links


  1. ^ GameInformer: Nintendo Answers Our Burning Questions
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  6. ^ Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze delayed - GameSpot
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  11. ^ Terry, Stefan (March 05 2014). David Wise Explains How He Got His Job on Tropical Freeze. Gamnesia. Retrieved December 20, 2014)
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