Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

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Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze
DKC-TF box.jpeg
Wii U boxart
DKCTF Switch cover art.png
Nintendo Switch boxart
Developer(s) Retro Studios
Monster Games[1]
Nintendo SPD Group No. 3
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Wii U, Nintendo Switch
Release date Wii U (original release)
Japan February 13, 2014
USA February 21, 2014[2]
Europe February 21, 2014[3]
Australia February 22, 2014[4]
Brazil March 20, 2014 [5]
Wii U (Nintendo Selects)
USA March 11, 2016
Europe April 15, 2016
Australia December 1, 2016[6]
Nintendo Switch
Japan May 3, 2018[7]
South Korea May 3, 2018
HK May 3, 2018
ROC May 3, 2018
USA May 4, 2018[8]
Europe May 4, 2018[9]
Australia May 4, 2018[10]
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
Nintendo Switch:
Media NS icon.png Cartridge
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Wii U:
Wiimote Sideways.png Wii Remote (Sideways)
Nintendo Switch:

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is a side-scrolling 2.5D platform game developed by Retro Studios and Monster Games for the Wii U and Nintendo Switch. It is the sixth game in the Donkey Kong Country series and a successor to Donkey Kong Country Returns. It follows the adventure of Donkey, Diddy, Dixie, and Cranky Kong as they are flung from their homeland and attempt to come back and reclaim it from the Snowmads, an organization of Viking-like seafarers. Throughout their journey, the Kongs must overcome six islands that have been seized by the Snowmads, dealing with one of their commanders at the end of each island. Most levels feature classic platforming where the Kongs need to jump, roll, climb and swing to get to the end of an area, but some levels are traversed in a vehicle such as a Mine Cart or a Rocket Barrel. The name "Tropical Freeze" is a pun on the term "tropical breeze".

The Wii U version was originally slated for release during November 2013 before being pushed back to December 6. It was later pushed back again to February 2014.[11] The Nintendo Switch version was released on May 2018, featuring Funky Kong as a playable character. In North America, the Wii U downloadable version, which requires approximatively 11.3 GB of free space on the console, was taken down from the Nintendo eShop without notice, shortly before the release of the Nintendo Switch version.[12] However, the game is still available digitally in other regions.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze was praised for its visuals and sprawling environments. The variety in gameplay, as well as the difficulty, were also noted in numerous critic reviews.


The Kongs together celebrating Donkey Kong's Birthday

The story begins at Donkey Kong's hut, where the Kongs are celebrating his birthday. One of the balloons flies out the Kong house and over the sea, where Snowmad ships are stationed. Far away from the island, a Pointy Tucks 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 frozen over

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.

After traversing across 5 islands with each posing its own threats, the Kongs finally arrive at Donkey Kong Island, which is 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 slip 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.


Returning elements[edit]

Basic gameplay[edit]

Donkey Kong uses a ground pound action to break a Cracked Block.

The gameplay of the title is very similar to that of its predecessor, Donkey Kong Country Returns. The Kongs are able to walk, run, jump, roll, pound the ground, as well as climb vines and ropes. By jumping, the Kongs can stomp on various enemies and defeat them; however, some enemies cover their top sides with shields or sharp objects, making them troublesome or dangerous to stomp on. Stomping on at least three enemies in a row grants the player one Banana Coin for each enemy stomped thereafter. The players start earning Red Balloons if they achieve a combo of eight or more enemy stomps.

The Kongs can perform Ground Pounds in various places to break unsound structures (such as crates and cracked blocks), revealing items or secret paths underground. The move can also be executed near some enemies to stun and neutralize them temporarily. Likewise, ground pounding can be used to empty Item Containers, which are found in the immediate background.

The Kongs can also roll to knock out enemies. Donkey Kong can perform this move on a short distance. Rolling confers high momentum, and if Donkey Kong jumps while rolling, he will gain longer distance than usual. If he rolls off the edge of a platform, he can quickly hop in mid-air, providing extra distance.

Diddy Kong returns as a playable partner for Donkey Kong and is the first Kong partner to be encountered in the game. Using his Barrel Jet, he can help Donkey Kong hover across pits and other obstacles for a short time. Diddy wields two popguns which can fire peanuts. Upon getting shot out of the weapon, the peanuts bounce on the ground swiftly until smashing into a wall or an enemy, bearing a minimal effect on the latter. If hit by a peanut, some enemies become stunned for a brief moment, although tougher enemies, like bosses, are not affected at all. The popguns can only be used in multiplayer or on Hard Mode. If controlled independently, Diddy will cause small tremors on the ground by firing his popguns, forming an ability called the Popgun Pound that is equivalent to the other Kongs' ground pound.

The health meter of the Kongs is measured in hearts which can be lost upon getting touched by an enemy and the like. In order to restore them, the Kongs have to collect Heart items found along the way. Red Balloons add more tries to the game. If all lives are lost, the players receive a game over and are prompted to restart the game from where their progress was last saved.


In specific levels of the game, Donkey Kong and co. are able to ride different vehicles. One such vehicle is the Mine Cart, which carries the characters along railtracks that cannot be trod by foot. As the Mine Cart moves automatically, the Kongs can duck inside the vehicle or jump with it in order to dodge obstacles. Another is the Rocket Barrel, which is necessary to fly across wide chasms and normally has to be navigated through a series of hazards and enemies. It can be risen up or let to fall down. Lastly, there is Rambi the Rhino (who is categorized as a "vehicle" in the game's instruction manual[13]), a powerful Animal Friend who can charge into enemies and defeat them. Otherwise invincible to most enemies even when standing still, he is vulnerable to lightnings, fire enemies, or any other object protected by flames.

Level map and bonuses[edit]

The Kongs progress through an island map. They head towards an incomplete level, marked by a red pad. On the bottom left lies a blue pad, the level of which has had its goal reached.

The game features a total of 63 levels (including boss and Hidden Kong Temple stages and excluding Funky's Fly 'n' Buy stations), grouped in seven island maps. Every island map is displayed from an aerial viewpoint and connects a system of paths, allowing players to take on different routes in order to reach a certain level. Once players complete a level, they open a new path or crossroad. Paths are normally navigated on foot, but Blast Barrels are sometimes used for taking shortcuts; Donkey Kong Island's map navigation, on the other hand, is entirely provided by Barrel Cannons. Warping from an island to another is always released via Blast Barrels.

On the map, non-boss levels are marked with circular pads, whilst boss stages are associated with star-shaped pads. Level pads light in several colors on different conditions: red pads mean their levels have not been completed yet; blue pads mean their levels have been finished at least once. Additionally, green pads relate to levels which have been completed on Hard Mode. Unlit/black pads are inaccessible, and switch to red when the paths that lead to them are unlocked.

On each island, the Kongs eventually encounter a shop run by Funky Kong, which is always marked with white pads. The shop, Funky's Fly 'n' Buy, offers items that can turn helpful for the Kongs, in exchange for Banana Coins. The price for each item stays the same on the course of the game. Alongside items, which include balloons of all sorts, Kong Barrels, and Heart Boosts, the shop also displays a Capsule Toy Machine, which contains collectable toy figures representing characters from the game. Each of them costs five Banana Coins and can be obtained by chance. As the players progress through the game, more toy figures become available in the shop.

An odd number of Puzzle Pieces (5, 7, or 9), as well as four K-O-N-G Letters, are spread in each level, excluding boss levels for both and Hidden Kong Temple levels for the latter. Puzzle Pieces unlock various concept artworks in a select Image Gallery, while K-O-N-G Letters are compulsory for unlocking Hidden Kong Temple stages; each world aside from the last one contains one of these stages. While some Puzzle Pieces are scattered throughout a level in different areas, some appear only after collecting a certain group of items. Bonus Stages dedicated to collecting these items are often featured within levels, and yield Puzzle Pieces after completion. These bonus stages can usually be accessed through hidden Blast Barrels or passages blocked by Snowflake Shields.

Finishing all levels of the game (including the Hidden Kong Temple ones) and collecting all of the K-O-N-G letters in the non-boss/temple levels are amongst the mandatory requirements for full, 200% completion of the game.


The map menu

On the map, the player can access a menu where they can select several items from a list. These items and their corresponding actions are presented in the following table.

Summary Allows the player to view a summary of their progress on the island where they are currently located. The summary lists all unlocked levels on that island and shows whether the KONG letters and Puzzle Pieces have been collected, as well as the best medal obtained in Time Attack mode for each level.
Options Allows the player to configure settings such as sound volume and button mapping. They can also use the "Add/Drop Players" function to establish the number of players and their controllers.
Main article: List of extras in Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

Allows the player to view a group of galleries where extra content can be unlocked. The Image Gallery is composed of artwork showing various concepts and ideas considered during the development of the game. Each piece of artwork is unlocked after all Puzzle Pieces are collected in a certain stage. The Music Gallery contains music used in the game. Each set of music pertains to one of the six main islands of the game and can be unlocked by beating the boss of its corresponding island. Dioramas that represent the six main islands of the game are unlocked the same way.

Quit Game Quits the game. A message window is displayed beforehand, asking the player to confirm they want to leave.

New features[edit]

Kong partners[edit]

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze features more playable characters than Donkey Kong Country Returns. The additional characters are Dixie Kong and Cranky Kong.

Dixie Kong can execute the Helicopter Spin with her ponytail and propel herself upward in midair. Using her ponytail, she is also able to swim against strong currents, accessing potentially secret areas. Cranky harnesses the Cane Bounce by using his iconic rigid cane to combat or overcome some obstacles that could be dangerous to stomp on, such as urchins and thorns. The Cane Bounce can be seen as a substitute to Dixie Kong's Helicopter Twirl, as Cranky can bounce off the ground with his cane and take off to increased heights. With the inclusion of more than two playable characters in the game, a premiere feature in the series, the variety of Kong Barrels has been invigorated. Players can stumble upon Diddy, Dixie, or Cranky barrels, each displaying their name abbreviations – DD, DX, and CK respectively. These barrels usually appear to contain only one character, whereas other spin like a roulette and constantly switch the partner inside, each time indicated by the before-mentioned abbreviations. In the standard mode of play, Donkey Kong can only carry one partner at the time; a partner freed from a Kong Barrel will replace the one that is currently on Donkey Kong's back. If the character in the chosen barrel is already seated on Donkey Kong, the characters can regenerate their health bar upon destroying the barrel.

Underwater mechanics[edit]

Donkey Kong is low on air and rushes towards a column of rising air bubbles. Air bubbles gush out of various stage decorations and replenish the Kongs' air supply.

The game also presents ice and underwater levels, which were absent in Returns. The Kongs' ability to swim has been restored, though it is altered from the Mario-styled swimming controls present in the original trilogy. In effect, the swimming mechanics are similar to those of the New Play Control! version of Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, where instead of pressing the jump button to gain momentum, the player has to move the Control Stick stick / +Control Pad buttons. The Kongs are now given a gauge with limited air while underwater, requiring them to seek out air bubbles to fill it and survive. Their air gauge will also fill up if the Kongs enter an underwater Barrel Cannon, and will remain filled for as long as they stay inside the barrel. A Corkscrew attack has been added, which can be used to defeat certain enemies or collapse less durable structures while underwater.

Plucking ability[edit]

The Kongs try to pluck an Item Handle out of the ground. Item Handles hide not only items, as their name suggests, but also Barrel Cannons. In some cases, they even affect the environment upon getting pulled.

In a vast number of areas in the game, players will encounter orange handles fixed on the surface of platforms. By standing atop these handles, the Kongs can grip and pull them to uncover hidden objects, which can be either bonuses or Barrel Cannons that launch them to other spots. Upon plucking some of these objects, the Kongs are bound to assist to certain phenomenons that manipulate the environment in some way or another.

The plucking function is used transport objects, such as barrels, DK Barrels, and Watermelon Fuse Bombs, the most common in the game. Some can be found directly on the ground and can be picked up, but other are located under handles. The player can also haul enemies, specifically those that are relatively small and wear orange helmets, like Tuff Fluffs and Tuff Tucks. Portable items and enemies are sometimes necessary to destroy hinderances, bags with precious content, and tough foes.

Producer Kensuke Tanabe stated that the ability to pick up enemies and throw them, and overall the plucking capability, was inspired from Super Mario Bros. 2, which he directed.[14]

Camera movement and Kong POW[edit]

For the first time in the series, the camera angle can change dynamically in some levels where Blast Barrels or mine carts 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, as well as when there is a partner by Donkey Kong's side.[15]

Single-player modes[edit]

Time Attack[edit]

TimeAttack 2 DKCTF.jpg

A mode originating in Returns, Time Attack of any level can be accessed only after the player has beaten the level in question at least once. It is available on single player and is a completely optional mode, meaning it does not unlock extra content in the game, nor contribute to its completion percentage.

The Kongs achieve a shiny gold medal and a new best time after playing in Time Attack mode.

Before entering Time Attack, players are given the option to select a type of Kong Barrel for the course of the chosen stage. During Time Attack, players have to guide the Kongs to the level's finish barrel in the fastest time possible. Three time limits are set during the course, each corresponding to one of the gold, silver, and bronze medals. Should the Kongs reach their destination before one of these time limits is struck, they are rewarded with the medal accordingly. A special shiny gold medal can be obtained if the Kongs finish the level at a particular time within the standard gold medal time limit. The milestone times for shiny gold medals are never displayed nor made clear.

TimeAttack 1 DKCTF.jpg

It is to be noted that, unlike in other modes of the game, the Kongs do not lose a life after their health bar has been drained completely during Time Attack, further proving that exploring the game this way has no virtual effect on general gameplay.

Checkpoint booths are not present during Time Attack. As such, everytime they fail progressing, players are prompted to restart the stage with the count reset to zero.

Additionally, if the Kongs finish a level in Time Attack mode without taking damage, their achieved medal will be accompanied by a heart icon. This icon is permanent until they achieve a better time.

Despite Checkpoint Booths being unavailable during Time Attack, Professor Chops makes an appearance as a referee. During every race, he first shows up at the beginning, waving a small green flag in the rhythm of the countdown. After the Kongs break the finish barrel, he springs on the scene with a chequered flag, indicating the race has been terminated.

Time Attack Leaderboards[edit]

If connected to the Internet and signed into Nintendo Network, players are granted the possibility to upload their Time Attack records on a worldwide leaderboard. These records are associated to their Nintendo Network IDs. The global Time Attack rank of any level in the game can be accessed by selecting the "LEADERBOARDS" section on the Time Attack menu. The rank displays other player's time records on the said levels, as well as the Kong partner used and, occasionally, a replay of their progress to be observed.

Hard Mode[edit]

Cranky Kong travels alone on Hard Mode. Note the single heart in his health meter.

When players have collected all the K-O-N-G Letters in the game and have subsequently completed every level, an additional game mode, Hard Mode, is unlocked. Hard Mode can only be played with one Kong, marking the only occasion in the game aside from multiplayer sessions when one can take full control of Diddy, Dixie, or Cranky. Nevertheless, the characters are given a single heart to go along the selected level, and have to reach their destination without taking damage at all in order to complete the stage. Layout differences during Hard Mode are established by the removal of checkpoints. In order to complete the game 200%, every level in the game has to be finished in Hard Mode. During Hard Mode, the K-O-N-G Letters of each level are recolored from red to blue. Collecting them again in this mode replaces the red star icon next to a chosen level's name (marking that all letters have been previously obtained there) with a blue one, although it is not necessary for 200% completion. Upon completing Hard Mode, a message appears saying, "You've achieved 200%! Hard mode? That wasn't so hard!" and new images are unlocked in the Extras menu.


The game features a co-operative two-player mode, where the first player is always Donkey Kong whilst the other can choose to play as Diddy, Dixie, or Cranky. Second players are able to control the Kong partner independently, but may choose to climb on Donkey Kong's back and perform joint actions, allowing player one to move both Kongs at once like in single-player mode while the other player makes use of their character's abilities. This includes the ability to use the popgun as Dixie and Cranky and perform ranged attacks. During multi-player, Kong Barrels are displayed as generic DK Barrels, akin to previous iterations. Should one player lose a life, the other can take the lead; however, the former can be found and redeemed inside the nearest DK Barrel.


It has been requested that this article be rewritten and expanded to include Nintendo Switch information.

Note: moves marked with the color blue are only utilised while the characters are underwater.

Wii U[edit]

The game can be played with either the Wii U GamePad, the Wii Remote alone and held horizontally, or the Wii Remote held vertically and connected to a Nunchuk.

Solo and co-op modes
Action(s) GamePad Wii U GamePad
(primary controls)
GamePad Wii U GamePad
(secondary controls)
Wii Remote Wii Remote
(held horizontally)
Wii Remote Wii Remote (held vertically) and
Nunchuk Nunchuk
Walk Classic Controller Left Control Stick +Control Pad +Control Pad Nunchuk Control Stick
Jump A Button / B Button A Button / B Button Two Button A Button
Barrel Jet hover (playing as/having Diddy)
Helicopter Spin (playing as/having Dixie)
Cane Bounce (playing as/having Cranky)
Swim Boost
Jet Blast (playing as/having Diddy)
Ponytail Propeller (playing as/having Dixie)
Cane attack (playing as/having Cranky)
Ground Pound (while standing) X Button / Y Button ZL Button / ZR Button Shaking Wii Remote Shaking Wii Remote and Nunchuk
Roll Attack (while moving)
Kong Roll (while moving and having a partner)
Shoot popgun
Grab ZL Button / ZR Button X Button / Y Button One Button B Button / Nunchuk Z Button
Kong POW L Button / R Button L Button / R Button A Button Nunchuk C Button
Enter pause menu Plus Button / Minus Button Plus Button / Minus Button Plus Button / Minus Button Plus Button / Minus Button
Enter HOME Menu HOME Button HOME Button HOME Button HOME Button
Co-op mode only
Pick up partner (for player 1) ZL Button / ZR Button X Button / Y Button One Button B Button / Nunchuk Z Button
Mount/dismount Donkey Kong (for player 2)
Professor Chops appears from behind a rock to teach the player how to perform a Corkscrew attack. This is the button combination for the Wii U GamePad primary control scheme.
Water Skip DKCTF.jpg
The Kongs can skip water by performing a continuous Kong Roll on its surface.


Playable characters[edit]

Character Description Kong POW Ability
Donkey Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
Donkey Kong

Donkey Kong is the character the single or first player always controls (except when playing in Hard Mode and/or as Funky Kong in Funky Mode of the Nintendo Switch version). He is 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.

Diddy Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
Diddy Kong

His jetpack allows him to hover in midair and get speed boosts underwater, though he cannot defeat enemies this way. His Peanut Popgun can be used to shoot and stun or distract enemies for a brief moment.

Turns enemies into Red Balloons, which add lives.
Dixie Kong - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
Dixie Kong

Her ponytail allows her to get a short lift or fall slowly in midair. Underwater, her hair can also be used as a propeller, confering more agility in her swimming; secret exits can be found with her hair as well, by going through currents. Her Gumball Popgun can shoot bubble gums at enemies.

Turns enemies into Gold Hearts, which allow extra hits from enemies.
Cranky Kong Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
Cranky Kong

His cane can be used to defeat hard-to-stomp enemies, and as a pogo stick in order to jump higher and on spikes. Also with his cane, he can whack enemies underwater. His Popgun shoots dentures at enemies.

Turns enemies into Banana Coins, which can be used to purchase items in Funky's Fly 'n' Buy.
DKCTF Funky Kong Artwork.jpg
Funky Kong

The single or first player can play as Funky Kong exclusively in Funky Mode of the Nintendo Switch version. He can double jump and hover through the use of his surfboard, can perform infinite rolls and underwater corkscrews, have infinite time underwater, and stand on spikes without taking damage. When playing as Funky Kong in single player, DD, DX, and CK barrels are absent and replaced by FK Barrels, which restore Funky Kong's health. Diddy, Dixie, and Cranky are also unable to mount Funky Kong like they can Donkey Kong.


Supporting characters[edit]

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. He becomes playable in the Nintendo Switch version (see details above and below).
Professor Chops
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 fiery enemies.
Squawks DKCTF.png
Squawks the Parrot
Squawks is once again a hireable character, who will sit in the corner of the screen and warn the player if Puzzle Pieces are nearby during a stage if placed in the inventory for a level.[16]
A character that appears exclusively in the Funky Mode of the Nintendo Switch version. He operates Funky's Fly 'n' Buy when Funky Kong is played as and offers him an employee discount on items.


Each boss of this game is faced at the end of one of the six main worlds. The Kongs have to deliver nine hits to a boss enemy in order to defeat him; after every three hits, the boss will anger and morph into another phase, usually changing color to reflect this. As the final blow is struck, the player is given the chance to punch the boss and knock him out violently by repeatedly pressing the buttons shown on screen.

Image Name Description Level appearance
DKCTF Pompy.png Pompy, the Presumptuous An enormous circus sea lion and the first boss of the game. The enemy repeatedly skates down a half-pipe arena, attempting different stunts to attack the Kongs. These include jumping high up in the air and diving back down onto the arena, as well as doing barrel rolls on the scene. During his first and third attack phases, Pompy would retreat in the foreground pond and start throwing aquatic enemies, such as Green Finleys, Sea Urchins, and Gordos, onto the arena. Ocassionally, he employs several Big Sphens as extra obstacles during the course of the battle. Big Top Bop
Skowl1.jpg Skowl, the Startling A giant owl and the leader of the Hootz platoon. His main attack set includes scattering sharp feather missiles, charging onto the Kongs with his sharp talons, creating strong gusts with his wings, and spawning small owl minions, some of which can be thrown back at the enemy to damage him. As the battlefield ascends into the sky, Skowl attempts new attack techniques. Mountaintop Tussle
Ba-boom kong 02 595.png Ba-Boom, the Boisterous A trio of mischievous baboon brothers. Their repertoire of attacks consists of throwing Watermelon Fuse Bombs, as well as swinging on a rope towards the Kongs, usually spinning a hammer in an attempt to hurt them. Ba-Boom will also try a rolling dash attack, changing direction as they collide with the arena margins. After two members of the trio are defeated, the third will summon specters of them and attack in the same manner as before. Triple Trouble
Fugu 01.png Fugu, the Frightening A spiky blowfish, capable of growing in size. He attempts to suck in the Kongs by inhaling large quantities of water, then push them onto the hermit crabs on the walls by puffing the water back. He usually also exhales Green Fish, which can be bounced back at the boss to deal damage. Likewise, his rear side is exposed and can be occasionally rammed into with a corkscrew. During his third phase, Fugu will swell enough to cover half of the battle area. Fugu Face-Off
Bashmaster.jpg Bashmaster, the Unbreakable An aggressive bipedal polar bear that wields a strong mallet. His most basic attack is a powerful blow with his weapon, which momentarily gets stuck on the ground, allowing the Kongs to use it as platform and stomp on the boss's head. Bashmaster is able to leap from the scene and crash back on the arena, tilting it abruptly while also sending icy shock waves. Often, Bashmaster creates columns of icy blocks which he sends sliding on the battlefield. These blocks can be pounded and destroyed, and some contain Banana Coins and Watermelon Fuse Bombs, the latter having to be thrown at the boss to damage him. Punch Bowl
SnowmadLeader.jpg Lord Fredrik, the Snowmad King The final boss, titled the king of all Snowmads. He is fought on a basalt field surrounded by lava. Lord Fredrik uses his horn to summon ice dragons and icy balls, some of them hosting Tuff Tucks and Tuff Fluffs that can be thrown back at the boss. Likewise, Lord Fredrik faces the Kongs directly by charging and attempting to ram his viking horns into the protagonists; while running, his back is exposed to stomp attacks, needed to damage the boss. He will also pound the ground and temporarily sink patches of basalt in the lava. Volcano Dome



Below is a table containing all the minion sub-species enrolled in the Snowmad army, classified into categories. They are followed by a brief description on their behavior and combat. The first and final in-game level appearances of each enemy are also mentioned.

Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Tucks DKCTF.png Tucks A short, hunched penguin enemy that simply roams on ground areas. It can be defeated by any signs of attack, including stomping and rolling. However, it can deal damage to the Kongs with a flipper smack. Mangrove Cove Crazy Clouds
Speedy tucks.png Speedy Tucks A variant of Tucks that tries to attack the Kongs by charging into them. Speedy Tuckses can be knocked down with any attack. Twilight Terror (seen in the background, loading fish with a Tucks)
Shoal Atoll (encountered as an obstacle)
Slippy Spikes
Tuff tucks.png Tuff Tucks A hunched penguin enemy wearing a helmet on its head. Should the Kongs jump on its helmet, the enemy will turn dizzy and flip over. It can then be picked up, carried, and hurled by the Kongs when necessary. This way, they become weapons against other enemies; they can also be used to break fragile walls that hide secrets. Mangrove Cove Rocket Rails
Tuff speedy tucks.png Tenacious Tucks A combination of Tuff Tucks and Speedy Tucks. As such, the enemy actively tries to attack the Kongs while being protected by an orange helmet. Volcano Dome Volcano Dome
Viking Art2 - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Pointy Tucks A penguin Snowmad that wears a viking helmet. Its sharp horns are pointed upwards, making jump attacks on the enemy impossible and dangerous. However, Pointy Tucks can be rolled into, hit with a thrown object, or crushed with Rambi. Shipwreck Shore Icicle Arsenal
Trench tuck.png Trench Tucks A Pointy Tucks that carries a sturdy, viking-esque shield. This shield prevents rolling into the penguin's front side, and since its helmet's spikes also prevent them from stomping the penguin, its only vulnerable place is the back side. Frantic Fields Meltdown Mayhem
Viking Art4 - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Archy A penguin archer that transports fish in a quiver. It uses the fish as projectiles, shooting them with a bow and using them against the Kongs. The fish follow a straight line in the air and can be stomped on. The Archy can be also stomped on, as well as rolled into. Canopy Chaos Icicle Arsenal
Fire archy.png Archy (fire) A variety of the regular Archy. It shoots flaming fishbones instead of carnal fish, which cannot be jumped on. Nonetheless, fire Archies can be defeated the same as normal Archies. Scorch 'n' Torch Icicle Arsenal
Boom bird.png Boom Bird A red-colored penguin that carries a Watermelon Fuse Bomb on its back. It can be defeated by any means of attack. However, as soon as the bomb drops on the ground, its fuse starts to burn and will explode after a short time. Cannon Canyon Icicle Arsenal
Painguin Tucks.png Painguin Tucks A penguin-like enemy that tries to stab the Kongs with the spear it holds. The spear is, in fact, a long stick decorated with the sharp bones of a dead fish. The only unprotected places of a Painguin Tucks are its head and back side. Mangrove Cove Rocket Rails
Papa Painguin closeup.png Papa Painguin A Painguin Tucks wearing a thorny helmet. Both ends of its spear are sharp and dangerous, making the enemy devoid of any vulnerable spots. However, the Kongs can stun the Papa Painguin and make it drop its spear with a nearby ground pound. This leaves the enemy's front and back sides unprotected and ready to be rolled into. Deep Keep Rocket Rails
Soary DKCTF.png Soary A penguin enemy wearing aviator goggles. It is capable of flying. Soaries are gathered in groups and soar towards the Kongs in a straight line. They can be simply defeated with a stomp. Alpine Incline Slippy Spikes
Bouncy Tucks.png Bouncy Tucks Bare Tucks that bounce on springy surfaces. They can be defeated with a stomp. Windmill Hills Jelly Jamboree
Big sphen.png Big Sphen A massive penguin Snowmad which carries a blowing horn, and uses it to shoot icy fish at the Kongs. These fish slide down their paths and can be stomped on. Likewise, Big Sphens can be defeated with three stomps or three roll attacks. Big Top Bop Slippy Spikes
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Viking Art7 - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Fluff Fluffs are hare Snowmads, pertaining to the most generic soldiers along with Tucks. They constantly leap from side to side. Fluffs can be defeated with any attack technique. Mangrove Cove Dynamite Dash
Tuff fluff.png Tuff Fluff A Fluff enemy that wears an orange helmet, identical to that of a Tuff Tucks. It can be distinguished from the common Fluff due to its lighter fur coloration. If the Kongs stomp on a Tuff Fluff, it will fall on the ground, ready to get picked up and tossed into other hazards. Horn Top Hop Volcano Dome
Harey.png Harey A white-furred, overweight Fluff that pounds the ground and creates sharp ice waves, dangerous to the Kongs. Hareys will perish if the player stomps on them three times. Reckless Ride Homecoming Hijinxs
Harold.png Harold Similarly to Hareys, Harold is an overweight hare enemy, but its attack method is different. It continuously attacks the characters with Watermelon Fuse Bombs. Before they detonate, the bombs can be passed back to the Harold, exploding on the enemy and defeating it. Sea Stack Attack Rocket Rails
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Owl Snowmad Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Hootz Owl-like enemies that fly around in set patterns and can be defeated in any way, the most efficient one being stomping. By stomping on a row of Hootzes, the player can advance over large chasms. Trunk Twister Crazy Clouds
Hot hootz.png Hot Hootz An orange Hootz that engulfs itself periodically with fire, and conveys it in a fireball, sending it towards the Kongs' current position. Except when they are shrouded in flames, Hot Hootzes can be knocked down with any attack method. Swinger Flinger Crazy Clouds
Puffton enemy.png Puffton An overweight Hootz that occupies more space than a regular Hootz. It can be defeated with three normal stomps on its head, but a single stomp from Rambi can be decisive for it. Windmill Hills Crazy Clouds
Tuffton DKCTF.png Tuffton Tufftons are Pufftons wearing plate orange helmets. These helmets protect them from stomps, but can be used by the Kongs as platforms. One of the few attacks that is effective to them is Cranky Kong's Cane Bounce, which, performed three times on their helmets, defeats them. Windmill Hills (seen in the level's introduction)
Horn Top Hop (encountered as an obstacle)
Slippy Spikes
Blue hootz.png Blue Hootz A tiny owl creature covered in blue flames at all times. It can only be defeated with a throwable object. Zip-Line Shrine Crazy Clouds
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Viking Art8 - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Waldough A large, strutting walrus enemy. It can be jumped on (or rolled into) three times before its defeat. Waldoughs can also be directly crushed with Rambi, or downed with a barrel or another carriable object. Mangrove Cove Meltdown Mayhem
Walnut dkctf.png Walnut A Waldough that wears a solid orange helmet on its head. The helmet protects the enemy from stomp attacks, except Cranky's Cane Bounce. Walnuts can be defeated with three roll attacks onto its front or back side. Mountain Mania Meltdown Mayhem
Viking Artwork - DKC Tropical Freeze.png Walbrick An armored walrus warrior. The enemy protects itself from jump attacks by wearing a helmet, as well as from roll attacks with a large, round wooden shield. Athough its back is not covered, the Walbrick immediately turns around if the Kongs attempt to attack it from behind. Stomping a Walbrick makes it dizzy and still, allowing the Kongs to attack its back side with a roll attack. Big Top Bop Blurry Flurry
Viking Art5 - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Chum Chucker Charlie A walrus holding a basket with fish. It takes fish one by one and tosses them at the Kongs in an attempt to harm them. A Chum Chucker Charlie can be destroyed with three jump attacks on its head. Fruity Factory Icicle Arsenal
Viking Art1 - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Fish Poker Pops The only horned helmet-wearing member of the Waldoughs, Fish Poker Pops is dangerous to be jumped on. It carries and uses a large stick weapon, with spiky pufferfish tucked into its ends. While it raises the powerful weapon in the air, the Snowmad enemy can be roll attacked three times to inflict damage. Spinning Spines Rocket Rails
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Lemmington dkctf.png Lemmington Lemmingtons resemble hamsters and possess spiky wheels which they roll along various surfaces. The only way to defeat a Lemmington is by pounding its surface, which makes it drop on the ground or into a pit. Horn Top Hop Icicle Arsenal
Ice dragon.png Ice dragon A powerful and rabid monster made of ice. Ice dragons are released through Lord Fredrik's horn and fly out, but plummet on the ground shortly after. As they crash, they freeze the patch of ground they fell onto, creating a slippery surface. Volcano Dome Volcano Dome

Domestic enemies and other obstacles[edit]

Along with the Snowmads, there are also many other foes, as well as obstacles, the Kongs have to fight or avoid throughout their adventure. Some enemy species, which otherwise act the same, change in appearance. Below is a table with all of the enemies and obstacles not related to the Snowmads.

General enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Blue finley.png
Red finley.png
Green finley.png
Finley Finleys are regular fish enemies that follow set patterns when swimming. They are harmful if touched, but vulnerable to Corkscrew attacks or Cranky Kong's cane swipes. Finleys are divided into Blue and Red Finleys, with the former moving more slowly. A distinct Green type also exists, though it behaves differently by leaping out of the water. Mangrove Cove Rocket Rails
Gargantuan Gills.png Gargantuan Gills A family of enormous fish predators that can only be encountered in vehicle-riding sequences of the game. Most of them roam around savannah waters while keeping their dorsal sides over the surface, potentially crashing their upper appendages into the Kongs. Other actively seek to attack the characters by jumping out of the water. A few of them remove part of the railtrack in High Tide Ride. Twilight Terror High Tide Ride
Gordo DKCTF.png Gordo A considerably larger and tougher fish than a Finley, but one that otherwise behaves the same. It can only be destroyed with three consequent Corkscrew moves, or three cane attacks from Cranky. Shipwreck Shore Rocket Rails
Snaggles.png Snaggles Snaggles resemble great white sharks and are aggressive, despite their goofy look. They are capable of leaping high above the water as they try to snatch the Kongs. Under the water, Snaggles chase the characters, trying to attack them. They can be defeated with throwable objects or with Cranky's cane. Shipwreck Shore Rockin' Relics
DKCTF Super Snaggles.png Yellow Snaggles An ochre-colored variation of Snaggles that is not able to leap from the water. Nonetheless, it behaves the same underwater, as it tries to bite the Kongs. Yellow Snaggles can only be taken out using Cranky's cane. Shoal Atoll Panicky Paddles
Lost Mangroves enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Dozy.png Dozy A bird foe that walks from side to side. The Kongs can get damage from this enemy if they simply head into it. Dozies can be brought down using any means of attack. Mangrove Cove Busted Bayou
Mimic dkctf.png Mimic A mysterious enemy hiding inside a bush and waiting to surprise attack the Kongs. Upon spotting them, Mimics walk in their direction, but soon turn out to stroll aimlessly. They can be defeated by any attack method. Busted Bayou Busted Bayou
Big mimic.png Large Mimic A mere bigger variation of Mimic. It can be defeated by any means of attack. Busted Bayou Busted Bayou
Monocle.PNG Monocle Monica A pink dragonfly-looking enemy wearing a monocle. It is very similar to Hot Hootz, in that it also flies by following set routes. Monocle Monicas can be knocked down by stomps and thrown objects. Shipwreck Shore Busted Bayou
Punchy Paddy dkctf.png Punchy Paddy A grasshopper enemy that comports by hopping up and down. It can be defeated using any attack, but can be dangerous if it lands on the Kongs. Mangrove Cove Busted Bayou
Sour dodo.png Sour Dodo A blue-feathered variant of Dozy, which deliberately runs into the Kongs upon spotting them. It is vulnerable to any attacks. Mangrove Cove Busted Bayou
DKCTF Thug Slug.png Thug Slug A slug enemy. It sticks to any platform, crawling on all of its sides. Thug Slugs can be defeated anyhow. Canopy Chaos Trunk Twister
Wild Wendell.png Wild Wendell A turtle-resembling foe that wears aviator goggles. When on dry land, should the player stomp this enemy, it retracts within its shell, which can afterwards be transported and hurled into other foes. Wild Wendells can also be found floating on water; in this stance, they can be defeated with a Corkscrew move from the beneath the surface of the water. Mangrove Cove Canopy Chaos
Autumn Heights enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
CheekyChesterDKCTF.png Cheesy Chester A rat enemy, first seen strolling on its back feet, then walking on all fours as it spots the Kongs, moving considerably faster. Cheesy Chesters grant damage to the Kongs when bumping into them, but are also vulnerable to any attack. Windmill Hills Rodent Ruckus
Schnautzel.png Schnautzel A fiery wild boar. After setting their aim for the Kongs, Schnautzels shoot fireballs from their large snouts at them. Three stomps (or, alternatively, three roll attacks), as well as a barrel, can knock them out. Windmill Hills Horn Top Hop
Bright Savannah enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Buffaloafer.png Buffaloafer A massive and strong buffalo that rams its large horns into the characters in an attempt to harm them. It will fling the Kongs up in the air if they simply hop on its back. Despite this, there are several ways to defeat a Buffaloafer: it can be lured into an abyss and fall, or it can accidentally hit a wall (or collide with the Kongs' roll attacks) and turn upside down, leaving its vulnerable spot, the belly, unprotected. Buffaloafers can also be quickly defeated with three Cane Bounces from Cranky. Baobab Bonanza Bramble Scramble
Carnivorous plant.png Chompette A steadfast creature with a thorny stem. It grows above pits and continuously chomps air. Only its fangs are dangerous, but the plant can be bounced on safely when its mouth is closed. Carnivorous plants can be defeated with three roll attacks, three Cane Bounces, or a thrown object. Bramble Scramble Bramble Scramble
Flaming falling pole.png Flaming Falling Totem Pole A dormant stone pillar that becomes awake as soon as it senses the Kongs being close. Afterwards, it topples on the ground and passes out, crushing the Kongs or any other creature if they remain where the pillar falls. The primates can mount on the back of the collapsed obstacle and pound it three times to break it. Scorch 'n' Torch Scorch 'n' Torch
Giant Spiked Nuts.png Giant Spiked Nut Large thorny fruits falling from baobabs and rolling on the ground. They are dangerous to touch and completely indestructible, although Cranky Kong can bounce on them with his cane without getting hurt. Baobab Bonanza Baobab Bonanza
Hanging TNT.png Hanging TNT Explosive clusters suspended with a rope. They detonate when touched by the Kongs or a throwable object. Cannon Canyon Cannon Canyon
Porcupal dkctf.png Porcupal A fiery porcupine enemy that engulfs itself in flames and startles its bristles to defend itself from the Kongs. Porcupal's flames eventually go out, and its bristles settle down its back, becoming vulnerable to any sign of attack. Even while under the fire, Porcupals can be knocked out with Water Sacks. Frantic Fields Bramble Scramble
Swooper Dooper.png Swooper Dooper A peculiar flamingo enemy that swoops continuously, trying to attack the Kongs. It can be destroyed by any attack. Grassland Groove Bramble Scramble
Whoosh.png Tornado Unbeatable natural hazards that traverse a patch of ground. When facing the Kongs, they block their path, but when facing the opposite direction, they fling them forward. Frantic Fields Frantic Fields
Sea Breeze Cove enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Electrified anemone.png Electrified Anemone Colonies of electrically charged anemones coat underwater surfaces in dark areas. They usually hide items, but are harmful and indestructible. However, Electrified Anemones are sensible to light and will retract whenever their area is floodlit by luminescent fish. Amiss Abyss Amiss Abyss
Fritz grin.png Fritz An underwater enemy that resembles an eel. Fritz releases shock waves around itself, and then swiftly teleports to another close area. When not electrically charged, it can be destroyed by any attack method that can be approached underwater, including a Corkscrew move. Deep Keep Shoal Atoll
Greenfish DKCTF.png Green Fish The spikeless blowfish that Fugu summons during his battle. Green Fish are exhaled by the boss enemy and used to attack the primates. However, they can be deflected with Corkscrew moves or cane swings and sent back to their master, who gets hit and subsequently damaged. Fugu Face-Off Fugu Face-Off
Jellyfish DKCTF.png Jellyfish Almost invulnerable enemies that can be found swimming either vertically or around stones. They are not affected by any of the Kongs' direct attacks, and will shock them with electricity upon contact. Jellyfish only perish if the heroes perform a Kong POW nearby. Deep Keep (seen in the level's introduction)
Amiss Abyss (encountered as an obstacle)
Amiss Abyss
Mama saw.png Mama Saw A small, chubby sawfish enemy that swims from side to side. Its spiky frontal saw is harmful for the Kongs, but its rear is not. A Corkscrew attack can be performed on that spot to defeat the enemy. Irate Eight Shoal Atoll
Proximity mine.png Proximity Mine Objects found afloat in the water. They will start to flash as they are approached, and will eventually explode. Their shrapnel can injure any character, such as the Kongs and enemies. Irate Eight Shoal Atoll
Pufftup DKCTF.png Pufftup A pufferfish that inflates itself periodically. In this state, the spikes on its body are revealed and can injure the Kongs. While inflated, the Pufftups are only vulnerable against Cranky's crane. They eventually deflate themselves, becoming exposed to any sign of attack. Amiss Abyss Shoal Atoll
SeaUrchin DKCTF.png Sea Urchin Sea Urchins usually get driven by underwater currents, but they are sedentary most of the time. Due to their thorns, they can only be defeated with Cranky's cane swing. Big Top Bop Fugu Face-Off
Watcha.png Squiddicus An enormous kraken-like cephalopod that impedes the Kongs in the level, Irate Eight. The Kongs would have to dodge his spike-covered arms, which the monster tries to slip through tight gaps and tunnels. The creature also leaves a deadly cloud of ink that the Kongs would have to survive. Irate Eight Irate Eight
Juicy Jungle enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Bouncelisk.png Bouncelisk A lizard foe that slithers on its path while transporting a bouncy round fruit with its tail. The Kongs can use this fruit as improvised trampoline, in order to reach high areas or items. Nonetheless, Bouncelisk are still dangerous. A roll attack can defeat them. Harvest Hazards Jammin' Jams
Bucky dkctf.png Bucky A yellow caterpillar enemy that clings to any surface, in the manner of Thug Slugs. Buckies leave trails of toxic gas behind, and when hanging down the ceiling, they release big, dangerous bubbles that descend slowly. Any attack method is effective against these enemies, but only when they are encountered normally; only barrels are apt to defeat upside down Buckies. Harvest Hazards Harvest Hazards
Buzzy in-game.png Buzzy A grouchy bee that flies towards the Kongs when tempted to do so. It is a potentially dangerous enemy indeed, but it can be jumped on. Spinning Spines Beehive Brawl
Chompy1.png Chompasaurus A flytrap beast that is able to crawl on the ground. Chompasauruses can also be found sticked to ceilings. They can use their long and stretchy tongues to hunt for prey. The Kongs can also get stuck to the tongue and end up inside the mouth of the beast. However, the Kongs can punch the Chompasaurus from inside repeatedly and destroy the enemy, freeing themselves. A Chompasaurus can also be defeated with three stomps on its head, or with a single barrel tossed at it. Reckless Ride (seen in the background)
Fruity Factory (encountered as an obstacle)
Beehive Brawl
Punch Piranhas.png Punch Piranhas Small predator fish encountered in the jungle's punch ponds. They quickly hunt anything dropped in their waters, including the Kongs. Punch Piranhas cannot be defeated. Punch Bowl Punch Bowl
Toucan't.png Toucan't A small toucan-like foe that constantly rolls a thorny and seemingly pungent berry down a path. At set intervals, the berry releases a substance that launches the Toucan't upward, letting the Kongs pass beneath it while heeding the berry. A single stomp can defeat a Toucan't. Harvest Hazards (seen in the level's introduction)
Panicky Paddles (encountered as an obstacle)
Jammin' Jams
Donkey Kong Island enemies
Image Name Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Electroid.png Electroid A small, electric enemy. Electroids follow conductible wires, but can also often be found standing underneath metallic pressure platforms, waiting to electrocute the Kongs. Electroids are invincible. Frozen Frenzy Frozen Frenzy
Snowball DKCTF.png Snowballs Hazards usually encountered in mid-air, as they are shot by bombards. They also spring in the air when their platforms get flipped by large objects. They are dangerous and have to be dodged. Blurry Flurry Blurry Flurry
Snowflake.png Snowflake Icy obstacles cluttered in rows. They drop down from the sky and float along a set path in the air. While dangerous to touch, they can be destroyed with any projectile or with a Cane Bounce. Forest Folly Forest Folly


Below is a table containing notable objects found in the game. A collectable is a gameplay element which can be collected and stored to a specific counter. Usually, when this counter reaches a certain number or magnitude, a special gameplay-related event will take place. A projectile represents an item which can be picked up and thrown at enemies or other elements. Vehicles refer to certain apparatuses that are used as mandatory ways of locomotion during select levels of the game.


Image Item Description
BananaDKCR.png Banana Bananas are the most profuse items in the game. They are usually found floating in the air and arranged in straight or circular patterns. However, a smaller amount of them can be revealed upon snatching Item Handles. It is sometimes mandatory to collect bananas, specifically those placed in more complex arrays and in more difficult level segments (as well as in the trail of a Flying Banana), in order to unlock Puzzle Pieces and other items, provided the player aims to fully complete the game. Bananas are simultaneously used in two ways: when a total of one hundred is acquired, the player earns an extra life; also after collecting one hundred bananas, the Kongs become eligible to perform a Kong POW. The main target of Bonus Areas is collecting items, including mostly bananas.
Banana Bunch DKCTF.jpeg10bananabunch.png Banana Bunch A cluster of bananas, sometimes worth five bananas, other times worth ten. Although common, they are more rare than singular bananas.
Banana Coin - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Banana Coin Banana Coins represent the currency in the game. They are rather frequent and can be obtained either by usual ways, or by performing a task such as collecting a set of bananas. Likewise, stomping three or more enemies in a row also grants the players Banana Coins. Using Banana Coins, the player can purchase goodies from Funky Kong's shop.
Heart DKCTF.png Heart Hearts compose the Kongs' health meter. If they get damaged once and therefore lose one point from their meter, they can replenish it with one heart found along the way.
Red Balloon - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Red Balloon Red Balloons grant supplementary tries for the player. A few can be found floating in the air, but they can mostly be acquired by performing tasks. After the character stomps on eight enemies in a row, he stops receiving Banana Coins and gets rewarded Red Balloons instead.
Letter K Artwork - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png K-O-N-G Letters These are precious square pieces, each having one of the letters "K", "O", "N" and "G" printed on them. In conclusion, there are four of these items in each level of the game (excluding bonus and boss levels), and are placed orderly in each stage to spell the word "KONG". Their sole role in the game is to unlock the bonus levels of each world, given that all the K-O-N-G Letters of the respective world are collected.
Puzzle Piece DKCTF.png Puzzle Piece Puzzle Pieces, as items, do not affect gameplay in any way, and only unlock concept artwork available by accessing the "Extras" menu. As challenge creators, they are a great factor of gameplay, as they are usually placed in the most secretive zones - for example, behind walls that stand between the player and actual paths; they also appear after completing a bonus stage, or after collecting occasional sets of bananas.
Air bubble.png Air Bubble Air Bubbles are generated by sunken diving helmets. While underwater, the Kongs have an air gauge that gradually depletes. They should pop Air Bubbles to gain and restore air.
Slot machine barrel.png Slot Machine Barrel The main objective of most levels is to hit the Slot Machine Barrel. It contains a roulette that decides what prize will the barrel reveal upon getting destroyed. The roulette only activates when the Kongs are very close to the Slot Machine Barrel.
Relic DKCTF.png Mysterious Relic Mysterious Relics are similar to Rare Orbs from the previous game; they are required to access a secret world, Secret Seclusion. Six of them are obtained by completing the temple levels in the game, while the seventh and final one is obtained after beating the game.


Image Item Description
Barrel dkctf.png Barrel Donkey Kong's signature object is present in this game. It can be heaved and carried by any Kong until the player decides to let it loose, which means to make the Kong throw it. After being thrown, the barrel rolls on the ground and knocks out every foe in its path until it smashes into a wall.
Partners Barrels - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png Kong Barrel Kong Barrels are more common than regular barrels. In the standard game mode and Time Trial mode, Kong Barrels contain either Diddy, Dixie, or Cranky Kong, each character having unique powers. If Donkey Kong lacks a partner, he can redeem him by throwing and breaking such barrels (otherwise, these barrels are empty) if he encounters them. As weapons, Kong Barrels function differently from regular barrels, in that they break instantly upon contact with any platform, without rolling. In Hard Mode, since the player can only make use of one character, all Kong Barrels are empty and useful only as weapons.
Watermelon fuse bomb.png Watermelon Fuse Bomb Bombs that take the form of spherical melons are called Watermelon Fuse Bombs. After pulling certain Item Handles, the Kong extracts such explosives from the ground; enemies called Boom Birds, as well as Harolds, wield these bombs and can be considered sources of explosives too. Watermelon Fuse Bombs can be carried and hurled just like barrels, but they detonate after several moments of fuse burning. Their explosions can take out groups of enemies and/or cracked surfaces and blocks.
Water Sacks.png Water Sack Water Sacks are found in stacks on the ground. They can be picked up and thrown one at a time. As such, they hurt any enemy that gets hit, but they also extinguish fiery enemies or spots due to being water holders.


Image Item Description
Barrel Cannon - Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze.png
Skull barrel cannon.png
Barrel Cannon A levitating cannon, shaped like a barrel. Barrel Cannons fire the Kongs across long distances, doing so at the player's signal. Common Barrel Cannons feature a white arrow imprinted on them. A type of Barrel Cannon that self-destructs as it blasts the Kongs features a skull and crossbones symbol instead.
Blast barrel.png
Skull blast barrel.png
Blast Barrel A floating barrel-shaped cannon. It will automatically shoot the Kongs shortly after they mount it, without the player's input. The barrel is marked by the white outline of an explosion; Blast Barrels that self-destruct also display a skull inside the outline.
Bell.png Bells Bells come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. Usually, they are used to produce items. This can be done by ground pounding or performing a similar action in front of one, or by knocking it with Rambi, depending on the situation. However, only the silver bells found in Wing Ding are mandatory to use, as they act as switches that reveal part of the path ahead.
Burlap hanging sack.png Burlap Hanging Sack A heavy sack made of cloth that lies hanged with a long rope. The rope's upper end is never seen. Hanging sacks can be broken open with projectiles to reveal treasures.
Climbing grass.png Climbing Grass Vegetation wrapped on walls, ceilings, and platforms. It can be grasped and used to escalate said surfaces.
Collapsible Underwater Grass.png Collapsible Underwater Grass Underwater grassy plants that retract their stems to reveal items when approached.
Cracked block.png Cracked Block Cracked Blocks are fragile, blocky objects that usually contain items. The Kongs can mount these blocks and break them with three consecutive ground pounds in order to obtain the items inside, if any.
Flying banana.png Flying Banana Entities conducting long trails of bananas. They hide under Item Handles, and once pulled out of the ground, they quickly start flying above the Kongs. They hold prizes, which they will reveal only after all bananas from their trails are collected. Flying Bananas leave the screen after a few moments.
Item Containers Objects that come in many different shapes and sizes. If pounded, they collapse and reveal collectables of great diversity (Banana Bunches, Red Balloons, Puzzle Pieces etc.)
Item handle.png Item Handle Item Handles are levers that are always stuck to the ground. They can be pulled upwards, but not all of them have the same role. Most of them keep items of all sorts underground, and after the Kongs exert a force on them, they reveal the items. Nevertheless, other handles are essential to the gameplay, since they bring about events such as the creation of platforms.
Jelly block.png Jelly Block Jelly Blocks are large and highly elastic objects on which the Kongs can bounce. When they are encountered in rows, they usually contain items. To get them out of a Jelly Block, the Kongs have to bounce on any other adjacent Jelly Block. These bouncy mold objects come in three colors: purple (regular), green (with a higher elasticity, thus offering better bouncing capabilities), and blue (causing a moving structure to work as soon as they are pressed).
Portal.jpg Portal Portals are found in a few levels, in areas which are accessible only with the use of one character's powers, such as Dixie Kong's ponytail twirl or Cranky's cane bounce. They are formed by glowing rune stones arranged in a circular pattern, and lead to hidden Slot Barrel Machines, opening the path to secret levels.
Purple flower platforms.png Purple Flower Platform A large plant grown high above the ground. Its flower faces the sky above and can be stepped on, but will tilt under the Kongs' weight. It would soon wither and let the characters slip off, reverting to its initial state after a while.
Rambi box.png Rambi the Rhinoceros Box A small crate identified by the rhino head clipped onto it. It can be hopped on and pounded to break it, revealing Rambi the Rhino.
Wooden spinning platform.png
Stone spinning platform.png
Spinning Platform A rotatable surface hidden amongst usual ground. Spinning Platforms hide pits that transport the heroes either into bonus areas or merely into hidden areas that contain loot. They can be rotated with a ground pound.
Snowflakeshield.jpg Snowflake Shield An object that is usually found blocking access to hidden areas and, sometimes, even the main path. They can be destroyed with a throwable object or with Rambi.
Spring platform.png Spring Platform A wooden contraption floating on water. It has two springs underneath. When pounded, this platform will press the springs and launch the Kongs up.
DKCTF VenusTrapPlatform.jpg Venus Trap Platform An upside-down carnivorous plant with a leaf crown serving as a platform. When the Kongs or an enemy walk under the plant, it drops down in an attempt to attack them. While down, the Kongs can jump on the plant's platform and rise along with it as the plant retreats to its initial position.
Vine.png Vine A long and narrow plant hanging from the ceiling. Vines are encountered motionless or swinging, and can be climbed to reach higher areas, or jumped from one to another to pass wide pits.
Vine-triggered platform.png Vine-Triggered Platform A platform that normally stays in a vertical position, but drops horizontally whenever the Kongs tension its vine connected underneath. The platform reveals collectables whenever it drops down. It is timed, however, and will go back to its vertical position after a while.
Zip-line vine.png Zip-Line Vine A straight, slightly inclined vine traced across the screen. The Kongs can grab the vine and slide along it, being able to jump or drop from it at any time.


Image Item Description
DKCTF Mine Cart.png Mine Cart Mine Carts make up the main gameplay gimmick in a few levels, as they transport the Kongs on railtracks. Players can jump over dangerous gaps or other obstacles while their character is in the Mine Cart. It moves forward automatically, requiring the player to dodge every hazard on the way in time. In Sawmill Thrill, the Mine Cart is temporarily replaced with a Log Canoe; in addition to having the properties of the Mine Cart, the object can also float on water and be used as a boat.
Rocket Barrel DKCTF.png Rocket Barrel An aerodynamic machine very similar in concept with the mine cart, the rocket barrel moves forward at a constant velocity. It transports the Kongs throughout very steep tunnels or over wide chasms, using its fuel power. It can only be controlled to ascend or descend.

Worlds and levels[edit]

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, Heart Boosts, Crash Guards, and figurines of characters in the game that can be obtained through a capsule toy machine.

The table below lists all of the worlds and levels in the game, including their respective music theme(s) and number of Puzzle Pieces. Since not every musical composition in the game has been given an official name, several of the ones shown are either described as arrangements from past Donkey Kong games, or merely marked as conjectural with a pointy line.

Note: tracks succeeded by an asterisk (*) in the following table are given their titles in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.

Worlds and levels
Lost Mangroves
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme(s)
1-1 Mangrove Cove 9 "Mangrove Cove"
"Mangrove Cove Underwater"
1-2 Shipwreck Shore 9 "Shipwreck Shore"
1-3 Canopy Chaos 7 "Mangrove Swing"
1-4 Trunk Twister 5 Trunk Twister theme
1-A Zip-Line Shrine 5 A cover of "Jungle Hijinxs" from Donkey Kong Country Returns, very similar in tone to "Jungle Jitter" from the Game Boy Advance version of Donkey Kong Country 3
1-B Busted Bayou 9 Busted Bayou theme
1-K Swinger Flinger 5 A rearrangement of "King of Cling" from Donkey Kong Country Returns
1-BOSS BOSS LEVEL: Big Top Bop 0 Big Top Bop theme
Autumn Heights
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme
2-1 Windmill Hills 9 "Windmill Hills"
2-2 Mountain Mania 7 Mountain Mania theme
2-3 Horn Top Hop 5 Horn Top Hop theme, with several variations depending on the location of the player in the level
2-4 Sawmill Thrill 5 "Sawmill Thrill"
2-5 Alpine Incline 5 "Alpine Incline"
2-6 Wing Ding 5 Wing Ding theme
2-A Crumble Cavern 7 "Cave Dweller Concert Returns"
2-B Rodent Ruckus 5 "Rodent Ruckus"
2-K Bopopolis 5 "Swinger Flinger" *
2-BOSS BOSS LEVEL: Mountaintop Tussle 0 Mountaintop Tussle theme
Bright Savannah
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme(s)
3-1 Grassland Groove 9 Grassland Groove theme
3-2 Baobab Bonanza 7 "Baobab Bonanza"
3-3 Frantic Fields 5 "Run, Rambi! Run! Returns"
3-4 Scorch 'n' Torch 7 "Scorch 'n' Torch"
3-5 Twilight Terror 5 A cover of "Stickerbush Symphony" from Donkey Kong Country 2
"Twilight Terror"
3-6 Cannon Canyon 5 "Savannah Pop"
3-A Rickety Rafters 5 "Savannah Pop"
3-B Bramble Scramble 7 "Savannah Pop"
3-K Precarious Pendulums 5 A rearrangement of "King of Cling" from Donkey Kong Country Returns
3-BOSS BOSS LEVEL: Triple Trouble 0 Triple Trouble theme
Sea Breeze Cove
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme(s)
4-1 Deep Keep 7 "Deep Keep"
"Funky Waters"
"Aquatic Ambiance Returns" (DKC:TF version)
4-2 High Tide Ride 5 A remixed version of the title screen theme
4-3 Amiss Abyss 9 "Cave Dweller Concert Returns"
"Funky Waters"
4-4 Irate Eight 5 A cover of "Lockjaw's Saga" from Donkey Kong Country 2
"Irate Eight"
4-5 Sea Stack Attack 7 "Mangrove Swing"
4-6 Current Capers 5 "Aquatic Ambiance Returns" (DKC:TF version)
4-A Rockin' Relics 9 A cover of "Lockjaw's Saga" from Donkey Kong Country 2
4-B Shoal Atoll 5 "Aquatic Ambiance Returns" (DKC:TF version)
4-K Spinning Spines 5 "Swinger Flinger" *
4-BOSS BOSS LEVEL: Fugu Face-Off 0 Fugu Face-Off theme
Juicy Jungle
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme(s)
5-1 Harvest Hazards 7 "Swing Juice"
5-2 Reckless Ride 5 "Swing Juice"
A cover of "Mine Menace" from Donkey Kong Country Returns
5-3 Fruity Factory 5 "Juicy Groove"
5-4 Panicky Paddles 9 "Swing Juice"
An underwater cover of "Swing Juice"
5-5 Jelly Jamboree 7 "Fruit Bounce"
5-6 Frosty Fruits 5 "Frosty Fruits"
A cover of "In a Snowbound Land" from Donkey Kong Country 2
5-A Beehive Brawl 7 "Fruit Bounce"
5-B Jammin' Jams 5 Jammin' Jams theme
5-K Platform Problems 5 A rearrangement of "King of Cling" from Donkey Kong Country Returns
5-BOSS BOSS LEVEL: Punch Bowl 0 Punch Bowl theme
Donkey Kong Island
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme
6-1 Homecoming Hijinxs 9 "Snowmads Theme"
6-2 Seashore War 5 "Seashore War"
6-3 Aqueduct Assault 5 Aqueduct Assault theme
6-4 Blurry Flurry 7 A cover of "Mine Menace" from Donkey Kong Country Returns
6-5 Forest Folly 5 "Freezie Breezie"
6-6 Cliffside Slide 9 "Snowmads Theme"
6-7 Frozen Frenzy 5 "Frozen Frenzy"
6-8 Meltdown Mayhem 5 "Snowmads Theme"
6-A Dynamite Dash 5 A remix of "Run, Rambi! Run! Returns"
6-B Icicle Arsenal 5 "Freezie Breezie"
6-K Slippy Spikes 5 "Swinger Flinger" *
6-BOSS BOSS LEVEL: Volcano Dome 0 Volcano Dome theme
Secret Seclusion
Level number Level name Number of Puzzle Pieces in the level Music theme
7-1 Levitation Station 5 An extended cover of the ending theme from Donkey Kong Jr.
7-2 Rocket Rails 5 An extended cover of the ending theme from Donkey Kong Jr.
7-3 Crazy Clouds 5 An extended cover of the ending theme from Donkey Kong Jr.

Mangrove Cove.png
Lost Mangroves
Autumn Heights
Grassland Groove.png
Bright Savannah
Deep Keep DKCTF 2.png
Sea Breeze Cove
Harvest Hazards.png
Juicy Jungle

Representative pictures of each world in the game
Donkey Kong Island
Representative pictures of each world in the game
Secret Seclusion
Representative pictures of each world in the game


It has been requested that additional images be uploaded for this article. Remove this only when the image(s) have been uploaded for this article.

One of the eleven Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze Valentine's Day greeting cards shared by Nintendo on their Facebook page
One of Cranky Kong's image macros posted by Nintendo of America on their Twitter

On February 7, 2014, Nintendo launched the Banana Mania Contest for residents of Canada. In a video posted on YouTube and presented by Canadian actor Ajay Fry, they were challenged to guess how many bananas are in a solid block of ice for a chance to win a four day trip to the Whistler Blackcomb ski resort, as well as a Wii U Deluxe Set system bundled with Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, a Wii Remote controller and a Nunchuck.[17][18]

One week before the game's initial lauch, on February 13, 2014, Nintendo celebrated Valentine's Day on their official Facebook page by posting various Donkey Kong-themed greeting cards. The photographs contain affectionate captions with word plays, and are accompanied by artwork for the game.[19]

On the day of the game's initial release, Nintendo of America pretended to make a deal with Cranky Kong to let him lead their Twitter account and post tweets. Over the course of the day, the character would interact with fans by answering questions, as well as using image macros of himself, parodying similar Internet memes in an attempt to approach the youth culture.[20] However, the marketing campaign was mostly met with negativity from the fans. The final tweet attributed to Cranky Kong is the game's launch trailer.[21]


The game was primarily praised by critics for its graphics, with Thomas Whitehead of Nintendo Life describing the series' upgrade to HD visuals as "impressive" and the game, a "visual achievement". He found the game to have engaging stages as well as fresh and eccentric environments, distinctly bringing out Autumn Heights and Bright Savannah as examples. He also found the game to have personality and overall attention to detail, confered by character design and humorous animation, and opined that the game has charm, partially attributed to David Wise's soundtrack, whom he described as an "expert ear".[22]

Jose Otero from IGN distinguished the game from other two-dimensional platformers for a sense of scale and journey, accomplished by what Otero opines as a brisk variety in level design. He liked what he saw as a realistic sense of weight in the playable characters, commenting that it affects their movements. The game was once again praised for attention to detail, and he opined Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze to have tantalizing backgrounds and a dynamic camera enhancing the player's perspective. He also believed that the game's issue of being very difficult is softened by the large amount of extra lives that can be collected. Otero likewise praised the boss fights as unique, and considered the punching segment at the end of each one as a "cool-payoff" and an homage to Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Conversely, he criticized the use of the GamePad, which he felt was underused.[23]

Chris Carter of Destructoid complimented the HD visuals and regarded the game as one of the best-looking games in the Wii U library. He opined that David Wise's contribution is a step-up from the soundtrack of Donkey Kong Country Returns. He also lauded the game's swimming mechanics and large amount of what he believed to be painstakingly-crafted levels.[24]

Danielle Riendeau of Polygon appreciated the game as a rewarding experience, in spite of its difficulty. In effect, Riendeau likened the reward to playing the game itself, believing it to have "imaginative layouts" and perfect balance between new enemies and energetic platforming. The co-op play was praised as a fun and chaotic experience.[25]

Lastly, Mark Walton of GameSpot came in opposition to other critics with a differing opinion, as he preferred to stray from praising the game's visuals and instead emphasized on the level design. He implied that the game is a downgrade from its predecessors for staying too close to the formula without maintaining the same quality ("your journey gets very familiar, very quickly"). He commented on what he opined as a lack of flow and inventiveness, which he claims to define the best 2D platformers. In particular, Walton was displeased by the game's difficulty, naming it a frustrating and cheap experience based on trial and error. However, he complimented the bosses and vehicle-riding sections, which in his view were unique and unusual and contrasted with the "monotonous" levels.[26]

Reviewer, Publication Score Comment
Thomas Whitehead, Nintendo Life 9/10 "Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze utilises the Wii U’s graphical capabilities beautifully, with levels both stunning in design and looks, and impressive set-pieces that never skip a frame and can test any gamer’s skills. As a single player experience it is near flawless, but the precision of the level design can lead the often fun multiplayer into moments of chaos."
Jose Otero, IGN 9.0/10 "Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze is a fun and challenging platformer that isn’t afraid to make you work hard."
Chris Carter, Destructoid 10/10 "It isn't perfect, since nothing is, but came come as close as you could get in a given genre. The new leader to beat in its sector, we're talking pure ecstasy here."
Danielle Riendeau, Polygon 8.5/10 "Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze could've easily been a me-too sequel. Its much-loved predecessor reinvigorated the series and did so much with the 2D framework that Retro could've released a bunch of new stages and called it a day. But Tropical Freeze adds intelligently to the formula, with new characters that imbue subtle nuance to the gameplay, a better-tuned challenge level and an increased emphasis on replay value. These features make Tropical Freeze consistently worth coming back to, and mark it as a high point for the series."
Mark Walton, GameSpot 6/10 "If the regular levels were as inventive as the boss battles, then Tropical Freeze would be a surefire hit, or at least a game that demands more of your attention. […] As it stands, this a sometimes fun[sic] but mostly uninspired and unimaginative entry in the Donkey Kong series."
Compiler Platform / Score
Metacritic 83%
GameRankings 84.46%


In the U.S, Tropical Freeze sold more than 130,000 units (both digital and packaged copies) in its first 8 days on the market according to Nintendo and the U.S sales analysis firm NPD[27]. In Japan, the Wii U version sold 43,301 for its first week and went on to sell a total of 120,086 copies according to Media Create data[28].

The Nintendo Switch version of the game debuted at the #2 spot in the UK. It was noted that the Nintendo Switch version debuted 53.7% higher than the original release and that its sales already accounted for 17% of all physical copies of the game in the country[29]. In Japan, the Nintendo Switch version was the top-selling game for its week of release, doing more than double the launch of the Wii U version with 96.754 copies sold[30]. In the United States, the Nintendo Switch version debuted at #5 for April 2018 and was the 2nd best-selling game for the Nintendo Switch according to NPD data[31].

By June 30 2018, the Nintendo Switch version of the game had sold 1.40 million units worldwide[32].

Differences in the Nintendo Switch version[edit]

Funky as a playable character

A Nintendo Switch port of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze was released on May 2018.[8] It features several additions and changes over the Wii U version:

  • The port introduces a beginner-friendly mode, the Funky Mode, which centers on Funky Kong. Here, the player can select the main playable character to be either Funky Kong or Donkey Kong. The Original Mode, which is set apart from the Funky Mode, represents the default mode of gameplay, with Donkey Kong as the main playable character.[8]
    The following are the exclusive features of the Funky Mode.
    • Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Dixie Kong, and Cranky Kong receive an extra heart, increasing their heart amount to three.
    • As a new playable character, Funky Kong has five hearts, and can perform continuous roll attacks and underwater corkscrew attacks.[8] His surfboard grants him a number of additional abilities as well, such as a Double Jump, a slower descent, an immunity to most kinds of Spike Traps and the ability to jump on most enemies that the other Kongs cannot safely jump on.[8] He can also breathe indefinitely while underwater.[8]
    • A parrot named Tawks appears in the Funky's Fly 'n' Buy shop. When playing as Funky Kong, Tawks replaces him as the shopkeeper. He impersonates Funky and gives him an employee discount.[33]
    • While playing as Funky Kong, Kong Barrels only display the FK initial. This prevents Diddy Kong, Dixie Kong, and Cranky Kong from joining Funky Kong outside of two-player mode, but Funky Kong can still heal himself by breaking them.
      • Likewise, Diddy Kong, Dixie Kong and Cranky Kong cannot hop on Funky Kong. On the map screen in two-player mode, Funky Kong holds onto one of the three Kongs on his surfboard.
    • The player is allowed to select and use items purchased from the shop while in a level. In the Original Mode, this is only possible on the map screen.
    • K-O-N-G Letters do not have to be collected again should the player lose a life before reaching the next checkpoint or the end of the level. In addition, they appear permanently translucent when the player re-visits the level where they were collected previously, similarly to the Puzzle Pieces.[34]
    • A figurine of Tawks can be obtained from the Capsule Toy Machine. It is listed under the "Kong Family" section.
    • The arrangement of "Stickerbush Symphony" that plays halfway through the game's credits is replaced with an original melody, featuring voice clips of Funky Kong. During that part of the credits, in-game pictures of Funky Kong are preponderantly shown.
  • Donkey Kong's nose in his in-game model is now more emphasized and defined.[35]
  • Donkey Kong gets a new idle animation in which he pulls out and plays a Nintendo Switch. Also, if Diddy or Dixie are with Donkey Kong when he pulls out his Switch, they play along with him, whereas Cranky expresses contempt for the console when offered a chance to play.[36]
  • The Crash Guard has changed from blue to green for unknown reasons, and the star on the Banana Juice has changed from red to green.
  • Funky Kong's toy in the Figurines Gallery shows him holding the red surfboard he uses in Funky Mode instead of the blue stylized one from the Wii U version. However, the icon that appears when the figurine is obtained from the Capsule Toy Machine still displays the original blue surfboard.
  • The physical version comes with a reversible cover featuring Funky Kong.[37]


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


For a complete list of media for this subject, see List of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze media.
Audio.svg Title theme

File infoMedia:DKCTFTitleMusic.oga
Audio.svg Credits theme. Contains arrangements of the tracks that play in Wing Ding and Jammin' Jams, and of "Stickerbush Symphony" as well

File infoMedia:DKCTF Credits.oga
Help:MediaHaving trouble playing?


Main article: List of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze staff
Main article: List of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (Nintendo Switch) staff

The game's producers were Michael Kelbaugh from Retro Studios and Satoru Iwata, Kensuke Tanabe and Risa Tabata from Nintendo of Japan, all of whom were previoulsy involved in the production of Donkey Kong Country Returns. Shigeru Miyamoto's involvement as the game's supervisor was less significant than during the development of the previous game.[38] The game's art direction was lead by Vince Joly like its predecessor, and Stephen Dupree was the lead game designer.

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.[39]

Pre-release and unused content[edit]

The steamboat, next to a screenshot of Trunk Twister, where part of it can be seen in the backdrop.

Early build[edit]

The HUD in E3 2013 footage of the game was slightly different from the final version. The health counter lacked the wooden plank icon behind the hearts. There was also no possibility to see whether the player can perform the Kong POW move, as the banana bar was missing.[40]

Additionally, in the E3 2013 demo, the level Cannon Canyon was known as "Cannon Canyons" and belonged in the second world instead of the third.

Level template[edit]

A steamboat model was built to serve as the basis for all mechanical structures present in Lost Mangroves. The steamboat itself is not fully used in the game, but a few instances appear in Trunk Twister.[41]

Concept artwork[edit]

Many of the game's concept artworks give out ideas that would have been used in the game but were ultimately rejected. Most of them are available in the game itself as rewards for collecting Puzzle Pieces; for a full list of concept artworks, complete with indications on what concepts were or were not used, see here.

Below is a list of notable artworks with concepts that did not make the cut.

AutumnHeights art5.png
Beavers posted between the paddles of a mill wheel. They would have been featured in Autumn Heights.
BrightSavannah art6.png
Donkey Kong using a kiwi bird to carefully go down a bramble-filled descent in Bright Savannah.
JuicyJungle art3.png
Numerous artworks, including this one, show that antropomorphic pigs would have lived and worked in Juicy Jungle. In the game, the factory of the jungle is entirely automatic.
SecretSeclusion art2.png
Donkey Kong traversing a moon world, which was likely intended to be a bonus level.
SecretSeclusion art8.png
DK facing an immense caterpillar cook inside a kitchen stow.


Levitating Monkey[edit]

DK being pushed against the reforming blocks

In Levitation Station, if DK jumps towards a block as it is forming, he may hang in the air beside it until it is ready to return to the background.[42]

Glitch done on the Switch

Schnautzel Falls Into Background[edit]

When a player finds a Schnautzel near a Tuff Fluff in Horn Top Hop they need to make sure they that it is slightly facing the background and keep rolling into it or throw another enemy at it. If done correctly, the Schnautzel is knocked out falling into the background instead of the foreground. This glitch can be done in both versions of the game.

Inaccessible Level[edit]

Prior to update "Ver. 1.1.0", the level 3-4: Scorch 'n' Torch would have a chance to not open after the completion of 3-3 Frantic Fields. On April 3, 2014, an update was released to fix this issue.[43]

References to other media[edit]

  • 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.
  • Super Mario Bros. 3: A tank resembling those from Bowser's military forces, originating in the said game, can be seen in the background of Frosty Fruits.
  • Donkey Kong Country: The music theme "Aquatic Ambience"[44] 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.[45] 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. A small section of the bonus theme, "Bonus Room Blitz", plays when clearing a stage.
  • Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest: Dixie Kong returns from this game which marked her first appearance. A bramble level, a swamp level and a beehive level return. The music theme Lockjaw Saga is covered.[46] 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. [47]
  • Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!: Water skipping and lightning from Lightning Lookout return.
  • Donkey Kong Country television series: Exclusively in the Nintendo Switch version's Funky mode, upon leaving the shop every once in a while, Tawks will utter "Give 'em the old banana slamma, dude!", referencing Donkey Kong's catchphrase from the animated series.[48]
  • Mario Kart Wii: Funky Kong's logo from this game reappears on a plane in the background of Big Top Bop.
  • Donkey Kong Country Returns: 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.[49] The giant Eyeball from Handy Hazards makes a cameo in the background of the level "Frozen Frenzy" frozen in place.[50] Mugly makes a cameo in the diorama of Donkey Kong Island frozen under the ground. 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 on the title screen.
  • 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[edit]

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ドンキーコングトロピカルフリーズ
Donkī Kongu Toropikaru Furīzu
Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze


External links[edit]


  1. ^ GameInformer: Nintendo Answers Our Burning Questions
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Nintendo Australia. (November 14, 2016). Wii U Christmas bundle announcement. Retrieved November 14, 2016.
  7. ^ Nintendo 公式チャンネル (January 11, 2018). Nintendo Direct mini 2018.1.11. YouTube. Retrieved January 11, 2018.
  8. ^ a b c d e f Nintendo (January 11, 2018). Nintendo Direct Mini 1.11.2018. YouTube. Retrieved January 11, 2018.
  9. ^ Nintendo UK (January 11, 2018). Nintendo Direct Mini - 11.01.2018. YouTube. Retrieved January 11, 2018.
  10. ^ Nintendo. (January 11, 2018). Nintendo continues momentum into 2018: Dark Souls, Donkey Kong, Kirby, Mario Tennis coming to Nintendo Switch. Nintendo AU. Retrieved January 11, 2018.
  11. ^ Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze delayed - GameSpot
  12. ^ Kim, Matt (April 30, 2018). Tropical Freeze Abruptly Disappears From Wii U eShop Ahead of Switch Release. USGamer. Retrieved April 30, 2018.
  13. ^ Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze instruction manual (PDF). Rambi is listed as a vehicle at file 15.
  14. ^ Wii U Developer Direct - Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze @E3 2013. YouTube. Retrieved August 6, 2015
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ Nintendo. Canada's Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze Banana Mania Contest. YouTube. Retrieved September 13, 2017
  18. ^ Banana Mania Contest ( Retrieved September 13, 2017
  19. ^ Nintendo (February 13, 2014). Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze Valentines (photo album). Facebook. Retrieved April 14, 2018
  20. ^ Feature: When Cranky Kong Took On Twitter. Nintendo Life. Retrieved September 13, 2017
  21. ^ NintendoAmerica (February 20, 2014). "I need a nap. Go do something useful like watching the new trailer for #DKCTF!" Twitter. Retrieved September 13, 2017.
  22. ^ Whitehead, Thomas (February 17, 2014). Review of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  23. ^ Otero, Jose (February 17, 2014). Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze review. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  24. ^ Carter, Chris (February 17, 2014). Review: Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  25. ^ Riendeau, Danielle (February 17, 2014). Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze Review: Summer Boy. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  26. ^ Walton, Mark (February 17, 2014). Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze review—Frozen in Time. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  27. ^ Xav De Matos (March 13, 2014). Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze sales reach 130K in eight days. Engadget. Retrieved May 09 2018.
  28. ^ Games Data Library (Retrieved May 09, 2018.)
  29. ^ Brian (May 08, 2018). Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze’s debut sales on Switch in the UK were 53.7% higher than Wii U. Nintendo Everything. Retrieved May 11, 2018.
  30. ^
  31. ^ rawmeatcowboy (May 22, 2018). APRIL 2018 NPD - NINTENDO LABO, DONKEY KONG COUNTRY: TROPICAL FREEZE, MARIO KART 8 DELUXE, SUPER MARIO ODYSSEY MAKE TOP 10. Go Nintendo. Retrived May 23, 2018.
  32. ^ Nintendo's IR Information Website (July 31, 2018). Top Selling Sales Unit. Nintendo Co. LTD. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
  33. ^ GameXplain (April 5, 2018). Who Replaces Funky Kong When Shopping in DKC: Tropical Freeze for Switch? + World 1-2 Gameplay (PAX). YouTube. Retrieved April 5, 2018.
  34. ^ GameXplain. (April 12, 2018). Some Funky Hoverboard Action in DKC: Tropical Freeze DIRECT FEED Gameplay (Alpine Incline - Switch). YouTube. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  35. ^ GameXplain (April 6, 2018). DK Got a Nose Job for DKC: Tropical Freeze on Nintendo Switch (Character Model Change). YouTube. Retrieved April 7, 2018.
  36. ^
  37. ^
  38. ^ Parish, Jeremy. Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze Full E3 Interview. USgamer. Retrieved September 17, 2017
  39. ^ Terry, Stefan (March 05 2014). David Wise Explains How He Got His Job on Tropical Freeze. Gamnesia. Retrieved December 20, 2014)
  40. ^ E3 trailer. Notice the different HUD for the health counter.
  41. ^ "This is one of the very first assets I made for Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze. It became the basis for all of the structures in the Mangrove Island […] I'm pretty happy with this piece and even though it is an early one and not fully featured in the game (you can see it in a few instances in Trunk Twister). I am happy its pieces got so much use throughout the game!" — Eric Kozlowsky, former artist at Retro Studios, on his blog
  42. ^ Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze - Part 42: "BONUS 1: Above the Clouds". YouTube. Retrieved September 13, 2017.
  43. ^
  44. ^
  45. ^
  46. ^
  47. ^
  48. ^ Nintendo Life (April 25, 2018). Weird Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze Switch TV Show Easter Egg. YouTube. Retrieved April 29, 2018.
  49. ^
  50. ^