Donkey Kong Island

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Donkey Kong Island
DKCRisland.png
Donkey Kong Island as seen in Donkey Kong Country Returns.
Ruler Donkey Kong
Inhabitants Kongs, Animal Friends
First Appearance Donkey Kong Country (1994)
Latest Appearance Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (2014)

Donkey Kong Island (also known as Kong Isle,[1] DK Island,[2] or Donkey Kong Country[3]) is the home of Donkey Kong and the rest of the Kong Family. It is a key location from the Donkey Kong franchise. Much as the Mushroom Kingdom, the normally peaceful island has been invaded frequently, often due to King K. Rool and his Kremling Krew who once made their home on the nearby Crocodile Isle.

The island was originally depicted as being shaped like Donkey Kong's head, complete with features such as ears and Donkey Kong's signature hair swirl. From Donkey Kong Country Returns onwards, however, the frozen mountaintops and the visage of the great ape have been replaced by a huge volcano. The island itself is extremely large and has drastically different climates in various areas, some areas being jungle, frozen wasteland, and desert. There are several mysterious ruins on the island primarily resembling ancient South American architecture. Many of these ruins depict visages of Kremlings who are thought to have built some of these temples, and the world of Kremlantis. Despite this, Kong-themed architecture is extremely common, perhaps even more so, in other ruins found on the island.

History[edit]

Donkey Kong Country series[edit]

Donkey Kong Country[edit]

Donkey Kong Island as seen in Donkey Kong Country

Donkey Kong Island is first seen in the game Donkey Kong Country, for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. While guarding the Banana Hoard one night, King K. Rool and his Kremling Krew appear and steal all of the bananas to menace the Kong Family. Setting off at once, Donkey and his little buddy Diddy Kong begin a long quest to take back Donkey Kong's Golden Banana hoard from the thieves, leading them through the island's many areas. The journey sends them through jungles, caves, glaciers and a large factory operated by the Kremlings before the two heroes finally locate the source of the problem. Finding a ship docked in the waters near Donkey Kong Island, the duo boards the vessel and defeats King K. Rool, allowing them to take back the Banana Hoard while driving the Kremling Krew from the island.

Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest[edit]

Donkey Kong Island appears only sparingly in Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest. Following their first adventure, Donkey Kong tries to kick back and relax on the beach, but unbeknownst to him, King K. Rool in his new pirate getup as Kaptain K. Rool was actively planning revenge. Piloting his crocodile-shaped airship, the Flying Croc, the villain sends down several of his Kremling servants onto the island and ambushes the unfortunate ape, taking Donkey Kong hostage on board his craft. The other Kongs quickly assess the situation before Diddy and his girlfriend Dixie Kong agree to chase the flying ship to Crocodile Isle and rescue Donkey Kong.

Although Donkey Kong Island is not visited for the rest of the game, it appears in the opening sequence of the game and can be seen in the background of the areas Gangplank Galleon and K. Rool's Keep. In the Game Boy Advance remake of Donkey Kong Country 2, these cameo appearances were removed for unknown reasons.

Donkey Kong 64[edit]

Donkey Kong Island as it appeared in Donkey Kong 64.

Donkey Kong 64 featured a return of Kong Isle as the primary location of the game’s levels, also featuring several different environments similar to its portrayal in previous games. The island is revealed to be part of an archipelago consisting of smaller islands known collectively as the DK Isles, several of which are accessible as a part of the story. At the beginning of the game which King K. Rool appears in a mechanized version of Crocodile Isle with a plan to destroy the homeland of the Kongs.

Tired of his constant defeats at the hands of the Kong Family, King K. Rool pilots his metal monstrosity into the archipelago with his new secret weapon, a giant, island-destroying laser cannon named the Blast-o-Matic. He plans to use the device immediately, but a malfunction caused by his incompetent underlings short-circuits his plans and delays the machine’s activation. In a bid to distract Donkey Kong while they repair the Blast-o-Matic, the Kremlings invade the island in force and kidnap Donkey Kong’s friends, stealing his Golden Bananas and blocking off several locations on the island in order to further impede the hero’s progress. After another quest, Donkey Kong frees his friends and reclaims the Banana Hoard. With the help of the Blast-o-Matic’s inventor, a crafty weasel named Snide, the Kong Family deactivates the doomsday weapon and saves their home from destruction.

It is worth noting that the island was smaller in size in this game than in previous installments, although this is likely due to technical issues, such as making it easier to roam the island. The vast locations accessible through portals on the island are different areas of Donkey Kong Island, and what is seen on the surface is not the entire landmass. Since the events of this game, Donkey Kong Island has been missing a boulder in its right ear, as it had been blown off by K. Lumsy.

Donkey Kong Country Returns[edit]

Donkey Kong Island as seen in Donkey Kong Country Returns.

The island makes yet another appearance in Donkey Kong Country Returns and Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D, once again acting as the main location. In its most recent appearance, the Kong Family is featured much less prominently as the main population of the island, with only DK, Diddy, and Cranky making full appearances in the game. Several new creatures are also shown to make their home on Donkey Kong Island in this game which were previously unseen in the series. When seen, the island is also under attack by a new antagonist group known as the Tiki Tak Tribe, who attach themselves to other creatures to take control of their hosts. Much like the Kremling Krew before them, these new enemies are eventually defeated by Kong Family and removed from the island.

Strangely, the mountains of Donkey Kong Island do not resemble Donkey Kong's head in this game, but are instead ordinary mountains. However, the worlds and their locations are mostly the same as in Donkey Kong Country.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze[edit]

The snow-covered island as seen in Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.

Donkey Kong Island appears in the fifth installment of the Donkey Kong Country series: Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze. The game features seven islands, which serve as the game's worlds. Donkey Kong Island is the sixth and final "main" island of the game (the seventh island, Secret Seclusion, is a bonus world). During the game's intro, Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Dixie Kong, and Cranky Kong are celebrating Donkey Kong's birthday. The view then moves far from the island to a large ship, which is being controlled by the Snowmads. A Pointy Tuck watches over the island, locates the Kong house, and gives the info to Lord Fredrik; the leader of the Snowmads. Upon the leader nodding their approval, several Pointy Tucks blow horns, as six more carry a large white horn covered with mist. Lord Fredrik laughs as he blows the horn, creating a large amount of wind, as well as a strange ice dragon. The ice dragon then flies toward the island, turning the sea into ice. After this, the Kongs are blown away by the intense winds, and the large ship stations itself where the Volcano from Donkey Kong Country Returns used to be. Finally, the Snowmads seize the island for their own, turning it into a frosty area with continuous snowfall.

The Kongs eventually get back to Donkey Kong Island and defeat Lord Fredrik at the top. After this, he falls into one of the ships around the island, and the Snowmads leave. Using the horn that the Snowmads left behind, Donkey Kong blows into it, melting all of the snow and ice, and returning Donkey Kong Island back to normal.

Other[edit]

Games[edit]

Donkey Kong Island is also where the events of DK: King of Swing and the Donkey Konga trilogy take place. The jungle portion of the island appears as a setting in several Mario sports games, such as Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour, Mario Power Tennis, as well as Mario Strikers, and in the Super Smash Bros. series it is parted into three playable stages: Kongo Jungle, Jungle Japes, and Jungle Hijinxs.

Television[edit]

An illustration of Kongo Bongo Island.

In several episodes of Captain N: The Game Master a world named "Kongo Land" was mentioned as the homeworld of Donkey Kong. Whether Kongo Land was an early version of Donkey Kong Island is unknown.

Donkey Kong Island was also the main setting of the Donkey Kong Country television series. On the show Donkey Kong Island was renamed "Kongo Bongo Island" and the island was also shaped differently, similar in appearance to a banana rather than DK's head. Like in the games, Kongo Bongo Island was home to the Kongs, among other creatures.

Basic information[edit]

Government[edit]

The denizens of Donkey Kong Island usually live peacefully together. While there does not appear to be an official government in place, Donkey Kong acts as the leader of the Kong Family, and the clan typically turns to him for leadership. Despite no longer having the strength to acts as the island's protector, Cranky Kong appears to have retained his role as patriarch of the family, and is often seen giving orders to the others while advising the younger generation during difficult times. In comparison, the events of the animated television series indicate that DK is slated to be future ruler of the island, implying that in the show, he has not yet earned the title.

Demographics[edit]

Donkey Kong Island is home to a number of different creatures, the most notable being the Kongs, a group of monkeys who make up the primary cast of the Donkey Kong series. In addition to the apes, many other animals on the island are known to be intelligent, with most possessing the ability to speak. Several species such as the Gnawties, Zingers, and Neckies are affiliated with the Kremling Krew, one of the Kongs enemies.

The Kremlings are also a prevalent race inhabiting the island, having established an industrial plant known as Kremkroc Industries, Inc., in addition to several outposts. The ancient temples found in Angry Aztec and several other locations are also heavily occupied by the Kremlings, although whether or not they built them is never specifically mentioned.

With the island's appearance having been redesigned in Donkey Kong Country Returns, its fauna has also received a retcon which departed it completely from the previous species that could be found on the island. While universal fauna, comprising Gnawties, Neckies, and Zingers, would have covered every corner of the island in the past, recent stances depict more variety in wildlife, as groups of animals might only be encountered within select habitats. In other words, birds like Awks and Rawks populate the Jungle area in large numbers, whilst Snaps and Pinchlies are generally Beach inhabitants. Many fossil creatures live in the Cliff portion. The Factory is mainly made of robots, whilst the Volcano typically has fire creatures.

Fossils inlaid within the rocks in the Cliff area hint at previous inhabitants of the island, consisting of enormous trilobite lookalikes, gastropods, placoderm fish, and eurypterids as well. These suggest that Donkey Kong Island was once underwater from the Cliff beneath.

After the Kremlings' invasion and their supposed retreat, several other groups have taken over Donkey Kong Island, and altering the island. During the events of Donkey Kong Country Returns and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, the Tiki Tak Tribe and the Snowmads respectively have represented significant parts of the population. The Kongs eventually exiled both the Tiki Tak Tribe and the Snowmads from the island.

Species of Donkey Kong Island[edit]

Areas[edit]

Donkey Kong Country[edit]

Donkey Kong Land[edit]

Donkey Kong 64[edit]

Donkey Kong Country Returns / 3D[edit]

Golden Banana locations in Donkey Kong 64[edit]

Kong Banana 1 Banana 2 Banana 3 Banana 4 Blueprint Bonus Banana
Donkey Kong Once talking to K. Lumsy, Lumsy will destroy a boulder, revealing the passageway to Jungle Japes and a Golden Banana. On DK's way up to the Frantic Factory lobby, DK can swing on the vines to the platform with the encased Golden banana. DK can then shoot the Target Switch with his coconut shooter to retrieve the Banana. Once DK has learned the Gorilla grab Move, he can pull the lever in the Frantic Factory lobby. Once pulled, DK's bongo Music Pad will appear and once he plays his bongos on it Squawks will hand over the Golden Banana. After Chunky destroys the ice barrier in the Crystal Caves lobby revealing a lake of lava and a Golden Banana across the lake way, Chunky can use the Tag Barrel to switch to DK and DK can become invincible to retrieve the Golden Banana by using his barrel move: "Strong Kong". DK must get his blueprint from a Kasplat in the Hideout Helm lobby. After that he can cash it in to Snide for a Golden Banana. N/A
Diddy Kong After Lanky preforms his Trombone Tremor and a Diddy Barrel appears in front of the Fungi Forest cabin, Diddy can get his jetpack and fly to the top of the isle to play a Bonus Game for the Golden Banana. The Diddy Barrel serves Diddy again and once he can fly, he can fly to the back of the Isle's head to get the Banana trapped inside a cage. He can use his Peanut Popguns on the Target Switch. While on his way up to Frantic factory, Diddy can swing over to an alcove to Snide's H.Q. Outside the H.Q. is a Diddy Pad which he can use to spring into another Bonus Game. Once beat he can receive a Golden Banana. In the Crystal Caves lobby, Diddy can use the Diddy Barrel inside to blast to the highest ledge. Once there he can play his guitar and receive a Banana from Squawks after the tune. After DK blasts the Coconut switch, Diddy can go in and attack the Kasplat in the Creepy castle lobby to get his blueprint. He can give it to Snide for a Golden Banana. N/A
Lanky Kong After Chunky rids the Jungle Japes bolder off the trombone Music Pad, Lanky can play his trombone on the pad and receive his Golden Banana from Squawks. Lanky can use his grape shooter to release the Golden Banana from the barred alcove around the entrance of K. Lumsy's catacomb. After Lanky has learned the OrangSprint, he can Simian Slam his switch in K. Lumsy's cell space and race the clock to retrieve the temporarily freed Golden Banana. Once Chunky demolishes another bolder off of a Lanky Pad in the Creepy Castle lobby, Lanky can float to the top of the loby's center prison stacks to play a Bonus Game for a Golden Banana. After Chunky brakes the various ice barriers in the Crystal caves lobby, Lanky can go and take his blueprint piece from Kasplat. N/A
Tiny Kong Behind Banana Fairy Island, Tiny can free a Golden Banana from a barred alcove by shooting the feather switch. In the Angry Aztec lobby, after "Chimpy Charging" Diddy on the two gongs, Tiny can ponytail twirl to her Bonus Game. After Chunky Super Simian Slams his switch in the Gloomy Galleon lobby, Tiny can shrink and swim through a tiny hole underwater to a Golden banana. After Tiny has Monkeyport (by using a Tiny Pad), she can transport to the tip of Crocodile Isle and play her sax for a Golden Banana from Squawks After Chunky demolishes the big "?" box in the Frantic Factory lobby, Tiny came come and get her blueprint from Kasplat. After acquiring 20 Banana Fairies and heading back into Big Fairy Island, the Big Fairy will open a door revealing a hidden giant Golden Banana with the Rareware logo on it. If the player has collected all of Tiny's previous DK Isle Golden Bananas, the totals screen will show "6/5".
Chunky Kong Chunky can use his Pineapple launcher to blast a switch near the waterfall at Kong Isle to retrieve a trapped Golden banana. After lifting a rock off a triangle Music Pad near the top of Kong isle, Chunky can play his triangle to receive a Golden Banana from Squawks. After Tiny does her sax solo on top of Crocodile Isle, a Chunky Barrel will appear near Fairy Island. Chunky can then go and become big to slam on the giant "X" to blast a rock containing a Golden Banana. In the Hideout Helm lobby, Chunky can turn invisible by landing on the Chunky Pad and swing over to a Bonus Game to receive a Golden Banana. Chunky can eradicate the Kasplat in the entrance of the Gloomy Galleon Lobby to get his blueprint. N/A

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese DKアイランド
DK Airando
DK Island

Trivia[edit]

  • In Donkey Kong Country Returns, if one were to move from an earlier world to a later world using the map, Donkey Kong will be positioned at the first level of the later world. However, if one were to move from a later world to an earlier world DK will be position at the Boss Level of the earlier world. The only world that breaks this rule is the Jungle, being the first world it does not have an earlier world. In order for DK to be placed at the first Jungle level, he will have to move from the final world (Golden Temple) to the Jungle.
  • In Donkey Kong 64, the main theme of DK Island was composed to be a theme in Banjo-Kazooie, while it was still known as Project Dream. The theme was titled "Lost" by the composer of both Banjo-Kazooie and Donkey Kong 64, Grant Kirkhope.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Donkey Kong 64 instruction booklet
  2. ^ Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble instruction booklet
  3. ^ Donkey Kong Country instruction booklet, used interchangeably with "Donkey Kong Island"