Mario vs. Donkey Kong

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This article is about the first game in the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series. For information about the series itself, see here.
Mario vs. Donkey Kong
Mvd.jpg
American boxart
Developer(s) Nintendo Software Technology Corporation
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Game Boy Advance, Virtual Console (3DS, Wii U)
Release date Game Boy Advance
USA May 24, 2004
Japan June 1, 2004
Australia June 4, 2004
Europe November 19, 2004[1]
Virtual Console (3DS) (Ambassador Program Release)
Australia December 15, 2011
Japan December 16, 2011
USA December 16, 2011
Europe December 16, 2011
Virtual Console (Wii U)
Japan July 23, 2014
Genre Puzzle/Action
Rating(s)
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
Media
Wii U:
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Game Boy Advance:
Media GBA icon.png Cartridge
Nintendo 3DS:
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Input
Wii U:
Wiimote Sideways.png Wii Remote (Sideways)
Game Boy Advance:
Nintendo 3DS:

Mario vs. Donkey Kong is a game for the Game Boy Advance. It brings back Mario and Donkey Kong's rivalry from the Mario series' first game, Donkey Kong. The game is more or less a spiritual successor to Donkey Kong '94, as it features the return of many elements from the original Donkey Kong game, such as the construction site setting, Mario's being vulnerable from heights, and using the hammer, and borrows elements from Super Mario Bros. 2, especially with picking up enemies and items. Despite bringing elements from previous platformers, Mario vs. Donkey Kong is more of a puzzle platformer; Mario must find the best route to complete the level by hitting switches and interacting with other objects, often in a specific order. This game spawned multiple sequels and became its own series; this is the only game in the series, however, to feature Mario himself as a playable character since the later games have the player control Mini-Marios. Mario vs. Donkey Kong was re-released as a free downloadable title for the 3DS on December 16, 2011. However, it was only available to people who purchased a 3DS prior to the August 12, 2011 price drop, meaning they had to be a part of the Nintendo 3DS Ambassador Program. Mario vs. Donkey Kong was re-released again on the Wii U's Virtual Console in Japan on July 23, 2014.

Story[edit]

Mario confronting Donkey Kong.

Mario has become so famous and popular in the Mushroom Kingdom that he has decided to establish the Mario Toy Company, which has developed a new toy called the Mini-Mario. As Donkey Kong surfs through the channels of his television set, he sees a commercial for the Mini-Marios. Donkey Kong instantly adores the toys and heads to the Toy Store, but finds that they are sold out. Donkey Kong turns around and sees the Mario Toy Company, deciding to loot the store. The store is managed by Toads, but they do nothing to stop Donkey Kong from stealing the toys. Mario then notices Donkey Kong and starts chasing him.

After Mario chases Donkey Kong for a while, he eventually checks his bag, only to see all the Mini-Marios he stole have dropped, with Mario, the toys, and the three Toad employees laughing at him. Enraged, he grabs the three Toads, climbs the building, and Mario rescues the three Toads while fighting Donkey Kong. Upon his defeat, he falls off onto a truck full of Mini-Marios and steals thirty-six more, now with keys attached. Mario gives chase once again, until a similar cutscene occurs in which he checks the bag again. Only Mario laughs until six Mini-Marios come out. Donkey Kong then grabs the Minis with a giant robot, to which Mario promptly frees while fighting Donkey Kong, eventually wrecking the machine and electrocuting Donkey Kong in the process. After that, Mario is about to scold Donkey Kong for what he did, but finds that Donkey Kong is crying in pity and shame. Mario cheers him up by giving him a free Mini-Mario. Donkey Kong gets what he has wanted all along while Mario and the remaining Mini-Marios celebrate.

Gameplay[edit]

Mvdk2.png

Each of the games six worlds is divided into eight levels. For the first six levels within each world, Mario must find a key and open up a door to the second half of the level, which is a checkpoint. There, Mario will find the toy that Donkey Kong dropped. If Mario is defeated in the second half of the level, his points reset to zero. At the beginning of each level, there is short sequence showing what Mario needs to do or what he may face before playing the level. This short sequence also explains what moves Mario needs to use to complete the level, showing some button combinations.

Unlike other Mario games, when Mario takes a hit, he loses a life. He can also lose a life from getting squished and falling on from a great height and landing on his head. If the fall is not big enough, Mario may get stunned on his back instead. There is also a time limit, which is similar to the traditional Super Mario Bros. games; if the time limit is low, an alarm plays and Mario panics. If the time limit runs out, Mario loses a life. Also unlike other Mario games, however, Mario has more moves he can use, such as jump, handstand, and and even higher jump. To defeat enemies, Mario must pick up objects and throw them at enemies, reminiscent of Super Mario Bros. 2. Throughout the level, there are some collectibles Mario can collect. Three are pivotal in earning a high score, which are different colored presents. Earning a high enough score, beating the default socre, earns a star for that level. The stars later are used to unlock Expert levels.

Once Mario completes a level and collects enough presents, he can play a short minigame to earn extra lives. One present may have a 1-up, one may have a 3-up or 5-up, and one present may have nothing; this is shown at the beginning of the minigame. One minigame is stopping a scrolling arrow on top of the desired present while the other has Mario swapping presents so Donkey Kong's fist squashes an undesired present.

The seventh level in each world is a Mini-Mario level. Mario leads the six Mini-Mario toys he collected back to their toy chest; however, he must make sure they avoid obstacles along the way. This leads into a battle with Donkey Kong, with each Mini-Mario saved becoming a "hit point". For example, if Mario saves all six of the Mini-Mario toys, he'll be able to be hit six times by Donkey Kong before losing a life. If the player fails to defeat Donkey Kong and chooses to replay the fight without doing the Mini-Mario level, Mario will start the fight with four hit points.

After Mario has beaten the six worlds and defeated Donkey Kong, six "Plus" Worlds are unlocked, numbered 1+, 2+, and so on. There are seven stages in each Plus Worlds, and there are no Mini-Mario levels. Mario must get to a Mini-Mario holding a key and lead it to the exit doorway. There is only one part per level in the Plus Worlds, and they are designed to be more difficult than the main worlds. There are still Donkey Kong boss levels in the Plus Worlds.

After beating all of the Plus Worlds, Mario fights Donkey Kong for the final time. If the player found all of the remaining presents in replay mode, the "Expert" levels will unlock; instead of completing them one at a time, the player must beat the game's default high scores (from the "Main" and "Plus" levels) to progressively unlock the levels.

The Japanese version of the game features e-Reader support and had space for 12 levels, but only 6 cards were released[2][3].

Double handstand jump

Controls[edit]

  • A Button - Jumps
  • B Button - Picks up item
  • +Control Pad - Moves Mario
  • L Button/R Button - Selects between worlds
  • Start Button - Pauses and continues game.

Mario's moves[edit]

  • Jump (A Button)
  • Handstand (Down +Control Pad + A Button)
  • Handstand jump (A Button while handstanding)
  • Double handstand jump (A Button after touching the ground from handstand jump)
  • Backflip (while facing right) (Left +Control Pad + A Button)

Worlds[edit]

Mario Toy Company is the first world, where Donkey Kong stole the Mini-Mario toys. This world features trash cans, Mini Shy Guys, and a few other gimmicks.
Donkey Kong Jungle Donkey Kong's next stop, where Mario must navigate through to collect the toys. This world features ropes, Venus Fire Traps, and RamRams.
Fire Mountain is a fiery mountain, possibly a volcano. This world features Podoboos, fiery Nitpickers, and lava.
Spooky House is a haunted mansion, featuring Boos, Polterguys, Thwomps, and others.
Mystic Forest is a world featuring Bob-ombs, Conveyor Belts, and many other gimmicks.
Twilight City is a city featuring robotic Monchees, lasers, and a "final" battle with Donkey Kong.

Plus Worlds[edit]

  1. Mario Toy Factory
  2. Donkey Kong Jungle Plus
  3. Fire Mountain Plus
  4. Spooky House Plus
  5. Mystic Forest Plus
  6. Twilight City Plus

After clearing Twilight City Plus, Mario faces Donkey Kong for the final time.

Items and features[edit]

Item About
MvsDK Key.png
Key
Keys are found in the first half of every regular level of the game. They must be taken to locked doors in order to open the second half.
MarioVsDK MiniMario Sprite.png
Mini Mario
Mini Marios are the objective of the second half of the normal levels, where they must be rescued from orbs. They follow Mario in Mini Mario levels.
MvsDK 1-UP.gif
1-Up Mushroom
1-Up Mushrooms give Mario an extra life.
MvsDK Switch.png
Switch
Switches are found in three versions: red, yellow and blue. As the main effect, the switch that is active makes platforms, blocks and ladders of the same color available to use.
MvsDK Spring.png
Spring
Springs help Mario to jump higher.
MvsDK ConveyorBelt.png
Conveyor Belt
Conveyor Belts appear in mass in some levels. They are used to transport keys and to help Mario through narrow areas. Their direction can be changed with a switch.
MvsDK DonutLift.png
Donut Lift
Donut Lifts are platforms that fall down if Mario stays too long on them.
MvsDK Elevator.png
Elevator
Elevators are found moving on lines. Their directions can be changed with a switch.
MvsDK TrashCanitem.png
Trash Can
Trash Cans can be carried and thrown by Mario.
MvsDK Hammer.png
Hammer
Hammers are found floating on platforms. Mario can use them to defeat enemies, such as the Oil. The can be thrown upwards and grabbed again while in the air.
MvsDK Presents.png
Present
Presents are found in red, yellow and blue variations. They are used to a bonus game in the end of a level, as well as opening the Plus Worlds.
MvsDK TOY.png
Letter
The letters T-O-Y are found in Mini Mario levels. They must be collected by Mini Marios to open the Toy Box.
MvsDK ToyChest.png
Toy Box
Toy Boxes are the goal of the Mini Mario levels. If the letters T-O-Y are collected, it opens and allows Mario to drop off his Mini-Marios.

Enemies[edit]

Enemy About
MvsDK Bat.png
Bat
Bats are enemies that, once released, fly horizontally through the stage. If they touch Mario, they latch on to him, causing him to fall from the rope he is climbing.
MvsDK BlackShyGuy.png
Black Shy Guy
Black Shy Guys appear in Twilight City. They attack by throwing wrenches at Mario.
MvsDK Blowtorch Guy.png
Blowtorch Guy
Blowtorch Guys are found in Fire Mountain. Besides walking from side to side, they also blow fire that can harm Mario.
MvsDK Bob-omb.png
Bob-omb
Bob-Ombs are dropped by some dispensers. They fuse up when Mario is near and explode moments later.
MvsDK Boo.png
Boo
Boos appear in Spooky House. They chase Mario while he is not looking at them, and cower while being watched.
Brickman.PNG
Brick Monster
Brick Monsters are placed on platforms. They throw three lines of bricks under them, forcing Mario to handstand to avoid being hit.
MvsDK Candle.png
Candle
Candles appear in Spooky House, where they have the ability float up and down. If Mario touches one, he gets burnt and loses an extra life.
MvsDK Cannon.png
Cannon and Cannonball
Cannons tilt up and down, shooting cannonballs.
MvsDK FallingSpike.png
Falling Spike
Falling Spikes fall from ceilings when Mario gets near them. They can also get stuck on the ground, and turn into platforms to the player.
FireMvsDK.png
Fire
Fires walk from side to side on an area. They burn Mario once they touch him.
MvsDK MiniNinji.png
Mini Ninji
Mini Ninjis jump up and down, similarly to regular Ninjis. This can help Mario to reach higher areas.
MvsDK MiniShyGuy.png
Mini Shy Guy
Simple enemies that move side to side continuously.
MvsDK Moncheesprite.png
Monchee
Monchees are mechanical monkeys with long tails that hang below the platforms they are on. Mario can use these tails as ropes without getting harmed. However, he still loses an extra life if he touches a Monchee's body.
MvsDK Nitpicker.png
Nitpicker
Nitpickers are small birds that float horizontally once they leave their nests. They also drop polka-dotted eggs at Mario.
MvsDK OilDrum.png
Oil
Oil is found in cans with "OIL" written on their sides and fire coming out of them. They move up and down and burn Mario if he touches them.
MvsDK Podoboo.png
Podoboo
Podoboos are found jumping out from lava.
MvsDK ShyGuyGhost.png
Polterguy
Polterguys move from side to side. There are three variations of this species: blue, red and yellow. If a switch of their respective color is pressed, they turn into stationary blocks.
MvsDK RamRam.png
RamRam
RamRams are found in jungle levels. Despite being enemies, they are used as platforms a few times. They can only be defeated by fruit.
MvsDK SirShovalot.png
Sir Shovalot
Sir Shovalots are firstly seen walking on platforms. But once they spot Mario, they use their front surfaces to shove him. This can be harmful when Mario touches a wall, but it also helps him to go through narrow places.
MvsDK SpearGuy.png
Sleeping Spear Guy
Sleeping Spear Guys are firstly seen sleeping, hence their name. Once Mario gets near them, they wake up and start running after him. The back to sleep if they touch a platform edge.
MvsDK Snapjaw.png
Snapjaw
Snapjaws are seen climbing ropes in forest levels. They can be defeated by fruit only.
MvsDK Thwimp.png
Thwimp
Thwimps jump from side to side, trying to crush Mario. They are invincible.
MvsDK Thwomp.png
Thwomp
Thwomps watch the ground and try to crush Mario if he walks under them. Switch-controlled blocks can be used to prevent them from reaching the player. If Mario touches them in any kind, including standing on top of them, he will lose a life.
MvsDK ThwompBlock.png
Thwomp Block
Thwomp Blocks fall from the ceiling, just like Thwomps. However, they keep falling even if Mario is not near. They can be used as platforms.
MvsDK TrashCan.png
Trash Can
Trash Cans look exactly like the items of the same name. They reveal themselves if Mario gets near and start walking. Mario can grab and throw them as normal Trash Cans.
MvsDK VenusFireTrap.png
Venus Fire Trap
Venus Fire Traps are found stationary on platforms, usually near ropes. They spit fireballs to harm Mario.
MarioVsDK DonkeyKong Sprite.png
Donkey Kong
Donkey Kong is the only boss of the game, fought in every world. In each of his fights, he attacks Mario in a different manner.

Development[edit]

The game was initially planned as Donkey Kong Plus, an updated version of the Game Boy Donkey Kong game. The only known difference between the original and Plus, aside from the graphics, was the addition of a level designer to be used through the Nintendo GameCube. However, the game vanished the following year, and was replaced by Mario vs. Donkey Kong, with the level editor gone and the graphics replaced with pre-rendered graphics. However, the game's sequel, Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis had this feature and took advantage of Wi-Fi Connection.

Staff[edit]

Main article: List of Mario vs. Donkey Kong staff

Mario vs. Donkey Kong is one of the few Mario games to be developed by an American team, Nintendo Software Technology Corporation (NST). In NST's team, Shigeki Yamashiro is the producer while Yukimi Shimura is the director. Wing S. Cho designed the game and Yoonjoon Lee is the engineering director.

Reception[edit]

Mario vs. Donkey Kong is generally well-received by critics, aggregating an average of 81/100 on Metacritic[4] and 79.07% on GameRankings.[5] Craig Harris of IGN gave the game an 8.5/10, "Great".[6]. Harris praised the game for having "faithfully retained the Donkey Kong arcade game's look and feel". His reaction is mild about the Donkey Kong boss levels, calling them "the ones with the least amount of creativity". He criticized the presentation, calling the sprites "awkward but admittedly well-animated 3D rendered" while the voice-overs from Mario and Donkey Kong are unnecessary, although not distracting. Despite these, he praises the game's faithfulness of the Gameboy Advance Donkey Kong games, with its fantastic level design and lasting appeal.

Marcel van Duyn of Nintendolife has echoed some of IGN's statements, deeming the game to be "a worthy successor", giving the game an 8/10.[7] As in the IGN review, Duyn criticized the game's pre-rendered sprites, saying that it "although it actually looks pretty good, it's a bit strange to see this style in a Nintendo title again after all this time." Duyn is disappointed that "the series has only had Lemmings-esque instalments since", believing "the original formula is perfectly worthy of another day in the limelight."

In a more critical review, Stephen Carvell of VideoGamer praises the game's visuals, but criticizes the game's level design, calling the reliance on the color-coded switches "tedious" and the later levels for using the same puzzles. He also criticized the Mini Mario levels for having "appalling level design that smacks of a lack of ideas." He gave the game a 6/10.[8]

Gallery[edit]

For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Mario vs. Donkey Kong.


[edit]

Artworks[edit]

Glitches[edit]

Freeze Glitch[edit]

In Spooky House on the 3rd level, in the next room, Mario should go near the far right spring. Then, he should press the red button to have the Polterguy transform into a block, once the Polterguy is almost by the wall. If Mario jumps on the spring between the block and the wall, Mario may go off stage and lose a life. The music then stops and the game freezes, but the enemies are still moving.[citation needed]

Media[edit]

Audio.png Mario vs. Donkey Kong - Title screen theme
MVDK-Title Screen Theme.OGG
0:53
File info
Video.svg Mario vs. Donkey Kong - Opening cut-scene
0:50
File info
Audio.png Mario vs. Donkey Kong - Mario: Ah, that Charles Martinet! Nice Italian boy.
MvsDK Mario CharlesMartinet.ogg

File info
Audio.png Mario vs. Donkey Kong - Mario: Oh yeah, don't forget to thank Mr. Miyamoto.
MvsDK Mario Miyamoto.ogg

File info
Having trouble playing?

Quotes[edit]

Main article: List of quotes in Mario vs. Donkey Kong

Mario[edit]

  • "Come back here, you big monkey!"
  • "Ah, that Charles Martinet! Nice Italian boy."
  • "Oh yeah, don't forget to thank Mr. Miyamoto!"
  • ""Let's-a go, little guys!"

References to other games[edit]

  • Super Mario Bros. 2: Picking up items serve a similar function. Shy Guys and Ninjis also make an appearance.
  • Donkey Kong (Game Boy): The game was originally planned to be a Game Boy Advance remake of this game, but ended up being a semi-sequel. As such, it uses all gameplay elements from this game, although it has a very different story. Even the final battle is a recreation of that in Donkey Kong.
  • Super Mario 64: Several of Mario's voice clips are recycled.
  • Donkey Kong 64: Several of Donkey Kong's voice clips are recycled.
  • Luigi's Mansion: Several of the Toads' voice clips are recycled.
  • Super Mario Sunshine: Several of the Toads' voice clips are recycled.

References[edit]

  1. ^ TMK: Release date info, retrieved 9-20-2008
  2. ^ http://www.a-suma.com/game/gba/card-e/mvsd_e1/mvsd_e1.htm
  3. ^ http://www.a-suma.com/game/gba/card-e/mvsd_e2/mvsd_e2.htm
  4. ^ Metacritic average
  5. ^ Gamerankings average
  6. ^ http://www.ign.com/articles/2004/05/24/mario-vs-donkey-kong
  7. ^ http://www.nintendolife.com/reviews/gba/mario_vs_donkey_kong
  8. ^ http://www.videogamer.com/gba/mario_dk/review.html