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Donkey Kong Jungle Beat

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Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
For alternate box art, see the game's gallery.
Developer Nintendo EAD Tokyo
Publisher Nintendo
Platform(s) Nintendo GameCube
Release date Japan December 16, 2004
Europe February 4, 2005
USA March 14, 2005
Australia March 17, 2005
Language(s) Deutsch
English (United States)
Español (España)
Français (France)
Genre Platformer
ESRB:E10+ - Everyone 10+
PEGI:3 - Three years and older
CERO:A - All ages
Mode(s) Single-player
Nintendo GameCube:
Optical disc
Nintendo GameCube:

Donkey Kong Jungle Beat is a 2.5D platformer in the Donkey Kong franchise for the Nintendo GameCube. The game's main gimmick stems from the use of the DK Bongos Controller, previously affiliated with Donkey Konga, as the recommended controller, though a standard Nintendo GameCube Controller may still be used.

Donkey Kong Jungle Beat is the first console Donkey Kong platformer since the release of Donkey Kong Country to not be developed by Rare, since the company, which lost the rights to the Donkey Kong series due to the fact that it was trademarked by Nintendo, was bought out by Microsoft. Due to the change in developers, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat was very different than the Donkey Kong Country games in gameplay, characters, and, perhaps most notably, the personality of Donkey Kong, who is shown to be more aggressive than in past titles. This was also the first game to be given the "E10+" rating by the ESRB.

The game received a re-release port to the Wii in 2009 (2008 in Japan) titled New Play Control! Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.


Story from the instruction booklet (GameCube):

Pound anything that gets in DK's way as he conquers the kingdoms and becomes the king of the jungle lands!!!

It was stated by game director Yoshiaki Koizumi in an interview in response to the game's minimal story that "The only thing Donkey Kong needs is to be the best, and to become the king of the jungle."[1]

An expanded storyline was added in the Wii re-release.

Story from the instruction booklet (Wii):

One day, the peace of the jungle was disrupted by a rampaging pack of wild baddies who wreaked havoc on the residents of the jungle.

Not only that, but they laid claim to every kingdom and stole each one's precious bananas!

"This calls for the one and only Donkey Kong!"

Join forces with your jungle buddies to face an army of powerful enemies and restore peace to the jungle!


The main goal throughout most of the game is to get to the end of a stage while also trying to earn as many beats as possible. At the beginning of each kingdom, the player starts with twenty beats (two hundred in the final levels) and may obtain more by collecting the bananas scattered throughout the stage and defeating enemies. These beats act as not only a score but also as the player's health throughout a kingdom. Taking damage after the beat total is reduced to zero results in a Game Over, and the player must restart from the beginning of the kingdom. At the end of each level is a fruit, which Donkey Kong must bite into to complete a level. The player can then play a minigame involving attempting to eat as many bananas as possible in a few seconds, giving them extra beats equal to the number of bananas eaten.

In this game, Donkey Kong is given a new move called the Sound Wave Attack. The Sound Wave Attack consists of an outer green ring mostly used to stun enemies and an inner red ring generally used to defeat enemies and grab beats. The Sound Wave Attack can also be used for various other purposes depending on the situation.

Donkey Kong about to fight Dread Kong, the boss of the Banana Kingdom.

Using the Sound Wave Attack, the player can collect all the bananas in a general area with one move, referred to as a clap grab, which increases the beat count by a greater number than by simply collecting each one individually. In addition, combos, which are obtained by performing special actions (backflips, ground pounds, riding a Jungle Buddy, etc.), also give the player more beats than normal. When one such move is performed, a counter starts at "Combo 2", and performing additional moves increases the counter by one for each action; the counter does not increase, however, for actions performed twice during one combo. Combos increase the amount of beats earned from bananas by the combo number; in the case of banana bunches, this number is also multiplied by three. A combo continues as long as Donkey Kong is airborne and ends when he lands on the ground again; the number of beats collected during the combo is then added to the total. However, if the player is damaged while a combo is active, the player loses all the beats accumulated during the combo.


Most of the Kingdoms in the game contain three stages: two standard levels to earn beats, followed by a boss battle in which the player must deplete the boss' health bar to zero. At the end of each kingdom, the player's total remaining beat count is tallied at the Sacred Tree. By earning a certain number of beats, the player can earn up to four crests from the tree. These crests are used to unlock new kingdoms, as each one can only be unlocked when a certain number of crests have been obtained. By default, the player earns a Bronze Crest no matter how many beats they have, though the others can only be earned by collecting the following amounts of beats:

  • 400 - Silver Crest
  • 800 - Gold Crest
  • 1200+ - Platinum Crest


Donkey Kong Jungle Beat can be played using either the DK Bongos Controller or a standard Nintendo GameCube Controller. When using the bongos, hitting one of the drums repeatedly sends Donkey Kong running in that direction, while holding down on the bongo causes him to walk. To jump, the player must hit both bongos simultaneously, and can use the bongos to move in midair. To jump diagonally, the player must hit the bongo in the direction they want to jump while using the other bongo to run. Hitting both drums in midair causes Donkey Kong to perform a ground pound. The Sound Wave Attack is used by clapping into the microphone. The Jungle Buddies are also controlled by using the drums.

With a Nintendo GameCube Controller, the actions performed by the bongos are mostly incorporated into the Control Stick. To move, the player must tap the Control Stick in the desired direction in order to move Donkey Kong; holding it causes Donkey Kong to walk, and repeatedly tapping it causes him to run. To jump, the player must press A Button or tap the Control Stick upwards, and to move in midair, the player must tap the Control Stick in the desired direction. The Sound Wave Attack is used by tapping the C Stick. To punch when necessary, the player must tap the Control Stick back and forth repeatedly. Moving any of the Jungle Buddies is done once again by tapping the Control Stick.


The selection screen, allowing the option to play any of the 16 kingdoms.

Donkey Kong Jungle Beat contains a total of 16 kingdoms, all of which are named after a fruit. Each kingdom features two normal levels followed by a boss battle, with the only exceptions being Opening Ceremony and the moon barrel levels (all one level each), making 51 total stages and 19 total kingdoms. The settings between the three levels in the main kingdoms rarely have any cohesion with each other, unlike the worlds in most games. Kingdoms are unlocked by clearing each barrel (and in the D Barrel's case, by clearing Opening Ceremony and the Banana Kingdom), but may not be accessed until the number of crests shown on each plaque is obtained.

Each kingdom is contained within one of six "barrels", with each barrel containing four kingdoms, while the moon barrel only has two kingdoms and Opening Ceremony is in its own sun barrel. The four barrels containing the game's sixteen main kingdoms are the "D", "K", "J", and "B" barrels, the letters composing the abbreviation for Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.

Barrel Kingdom Levels Boss To Unlock
Sun Barrel Opening Opening Ceremony
D Barrel Banana Kingdom Dawn Savanna Dread Kong Clear Opening Ceremony
Jungle Deeps
VS. Dread Kong
Orange Kingdom Silver Snow Peak Scruff Roc 1 Crest
Sky Garden
VS. Scruff Roc
Watermelon Kingdom Monkey Fest Rogue-Hog 2 Crests
Desert Oasis
VS. Rogue-Hog
Apple Kingdom Massive Canyon Turret Tusk 3 Crests
Ice Warren
VS. Turret Tusk
K Barrel Strawberry Kingdom Helibird Nest Mo-Hog 6 Crests
Spirit Tree
VS. Mo-Hog
Pineapple Kingdom Rumble Falls Karate Kong 7 Crests
Pristine Sea
VS. Karate Kong
Lemon Kingdom Chopperbird Race Fleet Roc 8 Crests
Cactus Mine
VS. Fleet Roc
Grape Kingdom Sweet Paradise Grave Tusk 9 Crests
Primeval Ruins
VS. Grave Tusk
J Barrel Cherry Kingdom Aurora Glacier Hard Roc 12 Crests
Grim Volcano
VS. Hard Roc
Peach Kingdom Arctic Plunge Torch Tusk 14 Crests
Ancient Foundry
VS. Torch Tusk
Melon Kingdom Iguanagon's Realm Bloat-Hog 16 Crests
Banshee Swamp
VS. Bloat-Hog
Durian Kingdom Battle for Storm Hill Ninja Kong 18 Crests
Aerie Fortress
VS. Ninja Kong
B Barrel Pear Kingdom Deep Sea Sprint Gloat-Hog 25 Crests
Clock Tower
VS. Gloat-Hog
Lychee Kingdom Helibird Dash Thunder Roc 29 Crests
Lava Cavern
VS. Thunder Roc
Chili Pepper Kingdom Cloudy Heights Double Tusk 34 Crests
Magma Coliseum
VS. Double Tusk
Star Fruit Kingdom Ninjape Rally Sumo Kong 41 Crests
Asteroid Belt
VS. Sumo Kong
Moon Barrel VS. Cactus King Cactus King 22 Crests
Clear D-J Barrels
VS. Ghastly King Ghastly King 51 Crests
Clear B Barrel



Character Image Description
Donkey Kong Donkey Kong in Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. The heroic ape.
Helper Monkeys Helper Monkey Small monkeys who assist Donkey Kong in various ways throughout the game.

Jungle Buddies[edit]

Like the Donkey Kong Country games, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat features four animals to assist Donkey Kong.

Animal Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Flurl from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.
Flurl the squirrel acts like a parachute, causing the player to slowly float downward when encountered. Flurl is controlled by pounding the drums to make him move in that direction; this also causes him to slow down. Jungle Deeps Ninjape Rally
Concept artwork of Hoofer, from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Hoofer the wildebeest is only found in ice-based levels. When controlling Hoofer, he continuously moves forward; the player must pound the right drum to run faster, and both to jump, like Donkey Kong. Hoofer is either found at the end of a level, or at the beginning of one, and depending on which determines what minigame is played at the end of the stage. If Hoofer is ridden from the beginning, the player must make as far a jump as possible. If Hoofer is at the end, the minigame involves jumping across as many gaps as possible. Both games earn the player additional beats. Silver Snow Peak Asteroid Belt
Helibirds are first encountered in the Strawberry Kingdom and are common afterward. They are controlled by pounding the bongos in either direction to make them fly upward in that direction. Helibird Nest VS. Ghastly King
Orco the killer whale is only encountered in Pristine Sea. Orco moves along a set path, and the player can only use the Sound Wave Attack when riding him; pounding the drums causes Donkey Kong to dismount Orco. Pristine Sea

The Evil Kings[edit]

Donkey Kong Jungle Beat features a total of eighteen bosses, together known as the Evil Kings.[2] There are four basic types of bosses, one of each occupying each of the main kingdoms in one barrel, while the other two occupy the last levels. The four different types of bosses are:

  • Kongs - New Kongs which fight Donkey Kong one-on-one with different fighting styles.
  • Rocs - Birds which carry massive eggs that must be attacked.
  • Hogs - Pigs which throw electric coconuts that must be knocked back at them.
  • Tusks - Tusked elephant machines that shoot cannonballs which are defeated by throwing Blood Pines at them.

In addition, the bosses in later barrels gain the attacks used by that type of boss in the previous barrel, and depleting a boss's HP to below half causes them to start attacking with their own additional attack.

Promotional artwork showing off the game's four Kong bosses.
D Barrel K Barrel J Barrel B Barrel
Donkey Kong prepares to fight Dread Kong
Dread Kong
Dread Kong
King of the Banana Kingdom
Karate Kong
Karate Kong
King of the Pineapple Kingdom
Ninja Kong
Ninja Kong
King of the Durian Kingdom
Sumo Kong
Sumo Kong
King of the Star Fruit Kingdom
Donkey Kong prepares to fight a Roc
Artwork of Scruff Roc from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Scruff Roc
King of the Orange Kingdom
Artwork of Fleet Roc from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Fleet Roc
King of the Lemon Kingdom
Artwork of Hard Roc from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Hard Roc
King of the Cherry Kingdom
Artwork of Thunder Roc from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Thunder Roc
King of the Lychee Kingdom
Donkey Kong prepares to fight a Hog
Artwork of Rogue-Hog from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
King of the Watermelon Kingdom
Artwork of Mo-Hog from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
King of the Strawberry Kingdom
Artwork of Bloat-Hog from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
King of the Melon Kingdom
Artwork of Gloat-Hog from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
King of the Pear Kingdom
Donkey Kong prepares to fight a Tusk
Artwork of Turret Tusk from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Turret Tusk
King of the Apple Kingdom
Artwork of Grave Tusk from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Grave Tusk
King of the Grape Kingdom
Artwork of Torch Tusk from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Torch Tusk
King of the Peach Kingdom
Artwork of Double Tusk from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Double Tusk
Kings of the Chili Pepper Kingdom
Moon Barrel
Boss Pig Poppo
Boss Pig Poppo
Mount of the final king
Artwork of Cactus King/Ghastly King from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Cactus King
The supreme king
Artwork of Cactus King/Ghastly King from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
Ghastly King
The supreme king refought


Other Image Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Bloom Fairy Used in case of images missing from a section gallery, table, bestiary box, or certain infoboxes. Fairies that drop a trail of blooms. Jungle Deeps Asteroid Belt
Combo fairies A screenshot from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat showcasing combo fairies Fairies that surround Donkey Kong when a combo is active. All stages
Dragon Pipes SpaceDragonDKJB.png Two-ended tubes that transport Donkey Kong. Ice Warren Asteroid Belt
Banana Heli Birds Artwork of a Banana Heli Bird from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Birds that appear in flight-based areas and leave a trail of bananas as they fly away. Helibird Nest Banshee Swamp
Banana Squids Artwork of a Banana Squid from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Squids that infrequently appear in underwater levels and leave a trail of bananas as they swim away. Pristine Sea Arctic Plunge


Enemy Image Description First level appearance Last level appearance
Bakky Artwork of a Bakky from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Bat enemies that swoop in to attack. Massive Canyon Primeval Ruins
Fire Bakky Fire Bakky Flaming bats that fly down and can burn Donkey Kong. Grim Volcano Magma Coliseum
Ice Bakky Ice Bakky Frozen bats that swoop down to attack and freeze Donkey Kong when touched. Ice Warren Aurora Glacier
Sea Bat Sea Bat Aquatic Bakkies that swim toward Donkey Kong. Pristine Sea Arctic Plunge
Bee A Bee from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Bee enemies that can be attacked with the Sound Wave attack, making them smaller. Sky Garden Aerie Fortress
Big Bee A Big Bee from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Large Bees that take several hits to defeat. Helibird Nest Clock Tower
Black Fairy Artwork of a Black Fairy swarm from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Fairy projectiles that merge into harmful Black Fairy Attacks. Grim Volcano Magma Coliseum
Black Fairy Attack Black Fairy Attack Horned creatures that can be deflected into their source. Grim Volcano Magma Coliseum
Blood Pine Artwork of a Blood Pine from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Explosive bouncy pineapples used as projectiles. VS. Turret Tusk Asteroid Belt
Chopperbird Chopperbird.png A man in a bird costume who races Donkey Kong in Chopperbird Race in the Lemon Kingdom. Chopperbird Race
Coco Pig Coco Pig Bipedal pigs that sit in a tree and throw coconuts at Donkey Kong. Desert Oasis Asteroid Belt
Dan Spider A Dan Spider from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Large spiders that move back and forth and take several hits to defeat. Cactus Mine Asteroid Belt
Gōrumondo Gōrumondo Armadillo enemies that take several hits to beat. Massive Canyon Magma Coliseum
Iguanagon Iguanagon A massive lizard that chases Donkey Kong in Hoofer's stages. Silver Snow Peak Asteroid Belt
Jelly Fish Jelly Fish Jellyfish that are immune to any attacks. Pristine Sea Asteroid Belt
Pea Jelly Fish Pea Jelly Fish Petit jellyfish that can be defeated with the Sound Wave Attack. Pristine Sea Arctic Plunge
Karikari Karikari Small rodents that latch on to Donkey Kong. Dawn Savanna Spirit Tree
Kamikami Kamikami Poisonous rodents that latch on to Donkey Kong and deplete his beat total. Desert Oasis Asteroid Belt
Kobu Kokko A sleeping Kobu Kokko from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Drowsy, large chicken-like plants that take several hits to defeat. Sky Garden Ice Warren
An angered Kobu Kokko from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Irate, large chicken-like plants that are more aggressive than their sleepy counterparts. Cactus Mine Magma Coliseum
Mini Elephant Cannon Mini Elephant Cannon Miniature Tusks that fire singular cannonballs. Battle for Storm Hill VS. Ghastly King
Mini-Iga Mini-Iga Round enemies that float toward Donkey Kong. Jungle Deeps Cloudy Heights
Fire Mini-Iga Fire Mini-Iga Flaming Mini-Igas that burn Donkey Kong on contact. Grim Volcano Magma Coliseum
Ice Mini-Iga Ice Mini-Iga Frozen Mini-Igas that can freeze Donkey Kong. Ice Warren Asteroid Belt
Mini Panda Mini Panda A miniature panda that dances around and has its own Sound Wave Attack. Grim Volcano Asteroid Belt
Mini Slump Birds Mini Slump Bird Red, smaller Rocs that drop Blood Pines and other fruit. Banshee Swamp Asteroid Belt
Brown Mini Slump Bird Brown, smaller Rocs that fly above in Hoofer levels; in Iguanagon's Realm they sometimes attack by dropping chestnuts. Iguanagon's Realm Asteroid Belt
Gold Mini Slump Bird Artwork of a Gold Mini Slump Bird from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Gold Rocs that only appear in Iguanagon's Realm and do not attack. Iguanagon's Realm
Spined Puffer Spined Puffer Fish that swim around a given area and defend themselves with retractable spikes. Pristine Sea Aerie Fortress
Ninjape A black Ninjape Black-clothed ninja monkeys that attack with swords. Battle for Storm Hill VS. Ghastly King
Red-clothed ninja monkeys that attack with mounts. Spirit Tree VS. Ghastly King
Green-clothed ninja monkeys that attack with shuriken and can run away. Battle for Storm Hill Ninjape Rally
Blue-clothed ninja monkeys that attack with shuriken and can jump, stand on ceilings, and disappear. Battle for Storm Hill VS. Ghastly King
Pig Poppo Gale Hawg Red pigs that blow Donkey Kong away when he gets close. Jungle Deeps Asteroid Belt
Fire Pig Poppo Artwork of a Fire Pig Poppo from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Black pigs that breathe fire. Banshee Swamp Aerie Fortress
Kiba Pig Poppo Artwork of a Kiba Pig Poppo from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Green pigs ridden by Ninjapes that charge across a certain area. Spirit Tree VS. Ghastly King
Mini Pig Poppo Mini Pig Poppo (black) Small black pigs that can be defeated with a single punch. Dawn Savanna Magma Coliseum
Mini Pig Poppo (white) Small white pigs that can be knocked into the air and punched into other enemies. Desert Oasis Ancient Foundry
Sleep Pig Poppo Artwork of a Sleep Pig Poppo from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Blue pigs that only sleep in place. Dawn Savanna Magma Coliseum
Rolling Frog Rolling Frog A round frog enemy that rolls around in a set area and can be stunned by attacking its front with the Sound Wave Attack. Primeval Ruins Asteroid Belt
Pea Frog Pea Frog Petit frogs that inflate whenever the Sound Wave Attack is used on them. Jungle Deeps Clock Tower
Sea Turtles Artwork of a Sea Turtle from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat Three marine turtles that race Donkey Kong in Deep Sea Sprint in the Pear Kingdom. Deep Sea Sprint
Snow Man Snow Man Snowmen that can be defeated in a single hit. Ice Warren Arctic Plunge
Snow Mole A Snow Mole from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Furry, spiked enemies that act as obstructions. Silver Snow Peak Iguanagon's Realm
Stinga Stingas from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Wasp enemies that fly after Donkey Kong and can be defeated with the Sound Wave Attack. Monkey Fest Asteroid Belt
Armored Stinga Armored Stingas from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Stingas in metal armor that cannot be defeated with a single attack; using the Sound Wave Attack turns them into unarmored Stingas. Aerie Fortress
Tar Man Tar Man A large, tar-like enemy that spits projectiles back and forth. Grim Volcano Magma Coliseum
Tar Fish Tar Fish A very large piranha similar to the Tar Man that spits a projectile back and forth. Arctic Plunge Aerie Fortress

New Play Control! series[edit]

A Sleep Pig Poppo being defeated by Donkey Kong in New Play Control! Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.
Donkey Kong fighting a Sleep Pig Poppo in the New Play Control! version.
Main article: New Play Control! Donkey Kong Jungle Beat

In 2008/2009, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat was ported to the Wii as part of the New Play Control! series of games, a series of GameCube games remade to take advantage of the Wii's motion controls. In addition to the new control style, the port also features new levels, additions and changes to the existing stages, and some gameplay mechanics having been altered from the original version to accommodate the change in controls.


In Japan, two Donkey Kong Jungle Beat-themed medal games were developed by Capcom and released on Sega's Triforce line of arcade machines:


“Our manual writer had an easy job on this one.[1]
Takao Shimizu

Development on the game started after director Yoshiaki Koizumi and producer Takao Shimizu attended a meeting featuring the bongo controller developed for Donkey Konga.[3] The team spent some time thinking of mechanics that would fit the controller.

After working on several titles using a traditional controller, Koizumi wanted to make something a different input method. He also heard various complaints that controls in contemporary games were becoming too complex[3] and thus desired to develop a simpler game. As such, he was pleased when the game's E3 2004 demo was well-received by female and "casual" players.[3]

The development team wanted to keep the game's mechanics and presentation as simple as possible to appeal to players intimidated by the complexity of modern games.[1] Elements from previous Donkey Kong games except Donkey Kong himself and the bananas were not featured as the game's development team thought Jungle Beat was too different in tone from previous Donkey Kong titles and that they hoped the game would showcase the style of the newly-formed EAD Tokyo[4] (a statement that would be notoriously mistranslated as Koizumi saying the Donkey Kong Country cast was not "fresh enough"[1]).


Main article: List of Donkey Kong Jungle Beat staff

Donkey Kong Jungle Beat was the first game developed by Nintendo EAD's Tokyo division, which would later go on to develop every 3D Super Mario game starting with Super Mario Galaxy. The game's producer was Takao Shimizu, the manager of EAD Tokyo Group No. 1, and it was directed by Yoshiaki Koizumi, the manager of Group No. 2, both of whom had been a part of development of several previous Super Mario games. The music was composed by Mahito Yokota, who later collaborated with other Nintendo staff to compose the soundtracks for various other Nintendo games. Donkey Kong's voice clips were provided by his current voice actor Takashi Nagasako.


Nintendo sent out fifty people dressed in gorilla costumes to compete in the Los Angeles Marathon on March 6, 2005, to promote Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Several of said runners were wearing Donkey Kong Jungle Beat-themed t-shirts and sweatbands, and some were also carrying DK Bongos.[5]

In volume 190 of Nintendo Power, a sweepstakes was held to promote the game. The grand prize was given to one entrant and consisted of a trip for two to Australia, New Zealand, and the Vanuatu islands, 5000 USD in spending money, and a copy of the game with a set of DK Bongos. The second prize was given to 20 entrants and consisted of the game and a set of DK Bongos. The third prize was given to 50 entrants and consisted of Nintendo Power's official 2005 T-shirt. The sweepstakes ended on March 1, 2005.[6]

Reception and legacy[edit]

At release, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat was received well by critics. The most prominent criticisms of the game were its short length and departure from the classic Donkey Kong Country gameplay, as well as a lack of replay value. Donkey Kong Jungle Beat mainly received praise for its advanced graphics, as well as its unique use of the DK Bongos controller, which many critics called innovative. The game was rated the 95th best game made on a Nintendo system in the Top 200 Games List by Nintendo Power in its February 2006 issue, and in the final issue the game was rated 130th in the 285 best Nintendo games of all time list.[7] EAD Tokyo would also use the experience from developing this game when they went on to develop Super Mario Galaxy.[8]

Release Reviewer, Publication Score Comment
Nintendo GameCube Matt Casamassina, IGN 8.8/10 "Jungle Beat is a surprisingly addictive and well-made platformer with a unique control twist. Anybody who says differently either didn't take the time to really play it or has no business playing games."
Nintendo GameCube Jeff Gerstmann, GameSpot 7/10 "Overall, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat is a scream...for the first eight levels. Once you've seen what the game has to offer, though, there's not a lot to come back to. Anyone with moderately developed action game skills will finish this game in one day, probably without actually dying once. That makes this a rental, at best, but if you're shopping for young children that like to smack stuff, or if you already picked up the bongo drums and are desperate for anything else that uses them, you could make a case for adding this one to your permanent collection."
Nintendo GameCube Brett Elston, GamesRadar 4/5 "Nintendo’s Revolution is promising something crazy unique, but for now the bongo controllers offer enough gameplay diversity to show that the innovator has its heart in the right place: making games accessible and exciting for everyone. Jungle Beat may be the only game to make good use of the bongos, but it does one hell of a job."
Nintendo GameCube Tom Bramwell, Eurogamer 8/10 "But, as we glance around for a cymbal to cap things off, it would be cruel to hold these things against Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Nintendo's burgeoning Revolution means it's barely even the most innovative 2D platform game we've played this month, but compared to the last two decades' output it's gloriously refreshing, and it's only the lack of longevity that leads us to hesitate in recommending it. If you can stomach the cost though, you'll soon see that it's far more than a gimmiEEEEOWWW. A suitable drumroll for the Revolution, then."
Nintendo GameCube Game Informer 7.5/10 "A gorgeous game with a couple examples of spectacular level design, but it doesn't have any tricks up its sleeve once the novelty wears off."
Compiler Platform / Score
Metacritic 80
GameRankings 81.74%


Infinite wall clap/clap momentum[edit]

By clapping on every frame while on a wall, the player can slide up the wall. Additionally, the player's momentum increases for every clap, causing them to speed away if the player reaches the top of the wall or jumps off of it, similar to the backwards long jump in Super Mario 64.[9]

Defeating both Double Tusks[edit]

By defeating one of the two Double Tusks with an attack that brings the total HP of both down to zero, both Tusks are destroyed, but the "enraged" animation (when a boss' HP is below half) for the one that is destroyed second plays instead of the "victory" animation (though the music and sound effects still play).[10]

Pre-release and unused content[edit]

Main article: List of Donkey Kong Jungle Beat pre-release and unused content

In the E3 2004 demo, the Party Monkeys are shown to be normal brown monkeys, similar in appearance to Donkey Kong. The Dread Kong boss did not exist, the stand-in boss being a gray clone of Donkey Kong. Most of Donkey Kong's voice clips for the demo were also reused from Donkey Kong 64.


For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.


Audio.svg Cartoon, Boing - Space Boing - Low - Used for Fairy Trampolines.
File infoMedia:Cartoon, Boing - Space Boing - Low.oga
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References to other games[edit]

  • Donkey Kong: At the very beginning of the Cactus/Ghastly King battles, part of the music that plays is a remix of the tune that plays when Donkey Kong climbs atop the Construction Site with Pauline.
  • Donkey Kong Country: The entire concept of collecting bananas and riding Jungle Buddies originated from this game. Additionally, the background music that plays in Dawn Savanna, after clearing any boss stage, and the ending are remixes of the Jungle Hijinxs theme. Lastly, voice clips from Funky Kong's theme can be heard towards the end of the Opening Ceremony.

References in later games[edit]

  • Mario Kart DS: Many of Donkey Kong's voice clips from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat are reused for this game.
  • DK: Jungle Climber: Many voice clips from this game are reused. Also, the pose that Donkey Kong strikes after completing the bonus stage (where the player has to catch bananas with a barrel) is identical to the pose that he strikes in Jungle Beat after completing the banana-eating bonus at the end of each stage.
  • Super Mario Galaxy: Several gameplay mechanics and elements from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat are reused in this game, including sound effects. Several assets from this game have also been found that go unused in the final game.
  • Super Smash Bros. Brawl: Rumble Falls is a default stage that can be selected in the game, and the background also changes rapidly, with one of them being the background that was used in the Sky Garden stage. Also, the song, "Battle For Storm Hill", in its original form, may be selected as background music for that stage and custom stages. Lastly, the Party Monkey, Gale Hawg, Hoofer, Karate Kong, and Donkey Kong's appearance in this game appear as Stickers, and Helibird and Turret Tusk appear as trophies.
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: Donkey Kong's Final Smash in this game is based on his combo punch attacks in Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. Additionally, Karate Kong and Ninja Kong both appear as Spirits.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ドンキーコングジャングルビート
Donkī Kongu Janguru Bīto
Donkey Kong Jungle Beat



  1. ^ a b c d NSider translation of an interview (original Japanese interview available here)
  2. ^ Nintendo UK NEW PLAY CONTROL! Donkey Kong Jungle Beat official webpage
  3. ^ a b c IGN: Donkey Kong Jungle Beat
  4. ^ Hyle (April 26, 2019), "Guess Who's Certified Fresh?", DK Vine. Retrieved October 20, 2019
  5. ^ Casamassina, Matt (March 8, 2005.) Apes Run Rampant. IGN. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  6. ^ Nintendo Power Volume 190, page 75.
  7. ^ Brain (December 12, 2012). Nintendo Power ranks the top 285 Nintendo games of all time. Nintendo Everything. Retrieved October 13, 2014.
  8. ^ Iwata Asks: Super Mario Galaxy (accessed March 07 2012)
  9. ^ Donkey Kong Jungle Beat TAS Banana Kingdom. Posted to YouTube by BlunderstabTAS (February 3, 2013). Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  10. ^ Donkey Kong Jungle Beat TAS Chili Pepper Kingdom. Posted to YouTube by BlunderstabTAS (August 11, 2014). Retrieved November 1, 2014.

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