Warp Barrels are uncommon types of barrels that appear in the original Donkey Kong Country trilogy and the latter two Donkey Kong Land games. They are usually distinguishable from the "W" painted on them. As their name suggests, Warp Barrels warp the Kongs to the stage's goal. Warp Barrels are usually hidden off-screen or in out of reach areas. A Warp Barrel is invisible until the Kongs enter into it. Warp Barrels are optional and the Kongs are not required to enter them to finish a level.
In Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest and Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!, a Warp Barrel appears in every level of each game's first two worlds (Gangplank Galleon and Crocodile Cauldron in the second game and Lake Orangatanga and Kremwood Forest in the third game). In the Game Boy Advance version of Donkey Kong Country, a Warp Barrel appears in more levels, and there is also a Warp Barrel per every level.
Donkey Kong Country
Warp Barrels first appear in Donkey Kong Country with the appearance of an Auto-Fire Barrel. When entered, Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong are directly sent near the end of the level. Unlike other levels, Stop & Go Station has a Warp Barrel that can easily be found by walking into the entrance to the left at the very start.
In the Game Boy Advance version, the Warp Barrels were redesigned with the 'W' on a red explosive effect; this design also appears in the other two Game Boy Advance sequels. By entering a Warp Barrel, the Kongs are taken to an ice walkway in a black void, with pictures of some levels, each showing a different environment, hovering across in the background. On the icy path there are bananas that spell out "WARP".
Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest / Donkey Kong Land 2
In Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest, by entering a Warp Barrel, Diddy and Dixie are sent into a warp room. The warp room usually only takes up a single screen, and in the center is a group of bananas in the shape of a large exclamation mark. The Kongs can exit out of the warp room to their right.
In Donkey Kong Land 2, Warp Barrels have the same sprite as Bonus Barrels. Unlike Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest, the warp rooms do not have bananas shaped like an exclamation mark. Warp Barrels only appear in levels from the first world, Gangplank Galleon.
Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! / Donkey Kong Land III
In Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!, Warp Barrels have a "W" and white stars painted on them. Unlike the previous game, Dixie and Kiddy are not sent into a warp room, so by entering the Warp Barrel, the Kongs are instantly warped in front of the Level Flag.
In Donkey Kong Land III, unlike Donkey Kong Land 2, the Warp Barrels are marked with a "W". Unlike Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!, the Warp Barrels take the Kongs to a small warp room, which they can exit from the right to reach the Level Flag.