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->''"He's coming out of hibernation. It's the '''''BODACIOUS BEAST''''', the '''''PRIME PRIMATE''''', '''''DONKEY KONG'''''. Introducing '''DONKEY KONG COUNTRY''', the first fully rendered video game '''''EVER'''''. Featuring his sidekick '''''DIDDY KONG'''''."''
-->-- [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SbHL8-XkXMA The original commercial for the game]]

->''"Where '''''YOU''''' gonna find it? '''''NOT''''' on 32 bit. '''''NOT''''' on 32X adaptors. '''''NOT''''' on CD-ROM. '''''NOT''''' on UsefulNotes/{{Sega|Genesis}}. It's '''16 BIT''', and it's only on '''''[[UsefulNotes/SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem SUPER NES]]'''''."''
-->-- The end of ''Magazine/NintendoPower'''s [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufQVpg5nrqA&feature=player_detailpage#t=696s promotional VHS for the game]], giving Nintendo the chance to [[TakeThat take a well aimed shot]] at their rivals.

Introduced in 1994 for the UsefulNotes/SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem, and ported to the UsefulNotes/GameBoyColor four years later and to the UsefulNotes/GameBoyAdvance six years after that, ''Donkey Kong Country'' introduced the groundbreaking technique of using pre-rendered 3D graphics in a 2D console game and marked the final decisive milestone in the early-to-mid '90s UsefulNotes/{{console war|s}} between the UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis and UsefulNotes/SuperNintendo, with the latter emerging in the lead in the west. It also brought the star of ''Franchise/DonkeyKong'' back into the limelight (though the game makes it clear that [[LegacyCharacter the Donkey Kong you play as is different from the original]], and that the original Donkey Kong is the older and aptly named SelfDemonstrating/CrankyKong).

In the first game in the series, the original ''Donkey Kong Country,'' Donkey Kong and his sidekick Diddy Kong travel across Donkey Kong Island to get back their stolen banana hoard from the Kremlings, an army of [[LizardFolk anthropomorphic crocodiles]] led by King K. Rool. In ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry2DiddysKongQuest,'' released a year later, King K. Rool kidnaps Donkey Kong and takes him to the Kremlings' homeland, Crocodile Isle, forcing Diddy Kong and his girlfriend Dixie Kong to travel into enemy territory and rescue their friend. A year after that, ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry3DixieKongsDoubleTrouble'' has Dixie and her baby cousin Kiddy Kong search for Donkey and Diddy, who have mysteriously gone missing while on vacation in the Northern Kremisphere, and battling the Kremling cyborg (and [[TheAhnold Arnold lookalike]]) Kaos.

''VideoGame/DonkeyKong64'', from 1999, brought the series onto the third dimension. In it, King K. Rool returns with a vengeance. Figuring that if he and his people can't have Donkey Kong's island, nobody can, so he steers an enormous high-tech warship next to it and plans to blast it right off the face of the Earth with his secret weapon, the [[{{BFG}} Blast-O-Matic]]. This game unites a team of Kongs (Donkey, Diddy, Dixie's sister Tiny, Kiddy's brother Chunky, and odd-man-out Lanky, although other familiar faces such as Cranky and Funky lend a hand along the way) who set out to find a series of 200 solid-gold giant bananas and the missing blueprints to the Blast-O-Matic in an effort to trounce the Kremlings for the final time.

Supporting [=NPCs=] in the series include:
* Cranky Kong, who [[NostalgiaFilter reminisces about the old days of video games]] and gives advice in the first and second games.
* Funky Kong, whose jet barrels allow the Kongs to exit the current world and travel to different ones without beating it's boss.
* Candy Kong, who acted as a save point in the first game.
* Wrinkly Kong, Cranky's wife, who in the second game ran a school called Kong College which gave players tips about how to play the game, and where players could also save their game in the second and third installments.
* Swanky Kong, who hosted a quiz game and a carnival attraction in the second and third games respectively, allowing players to earn additional lives.

Also of note is that during the first game's heydey, the ''Blockbuster World Video Game Championships II'' were given an authorized romhack of the game called ''Donkey Kong Country Competition Cartridge'', which basically turned the game into a competition to grab as many bananas as possible within a time limit of five minutes, with only a few levels available and several tweaks to encourage scoring. After the competition ended, Nintendo took back the carts and sold them to subscribers of ''Magazine/NintendoPower''. Only 2,500 copies of the game are known to exist, and it has since become a highly valued collectors item.

The UsefulNotes/GameBoyColor port of ''Donkey Kong Country'' has two extra mini-games: Funky Kong's FishingMiniGame and Candy's Challenge, where you perform in luck-based tasks similar to the various {{Bonus Stage}}s. Funky's Fishing Game is also seen in the UsefulNotes/GameBoyAdvance port, though Candy's Challenge is replaced by [[RhythmGame Candy's Dance Studio]]. Also in the GBA port, the player can fill the Kongs' scrapbook by finding cameras and performing in-game feats of varying difficulty. The GBA port of ''Donkey Kong Country 2'' contains the mini-games [[RacingMinigame Expresso Racing]] and Funky's Flight Challenges, in addition to bringing back the scrapbook feature. There is also a new boss, Kerozene, to fight. In both games, all the mini-games must be won each time they're encountered and the scrapbook must be completely filled in order to achieve the highest completion percentage. (In the port of 2, there is an additional mini-game at Klubba's Kiosk called Bag a Bug, but playing it is completely optional.) The GBA port of ''Donkey Kong Country 3'' contains the mini-games Funky's Rentals, Cranky's Dojo, and Swanky's Dash. There is no scrapbook feature this time around. All of Funky's challenges must be completed to achieve the highest percentage, but Cranky and Swanky's games need only to be won once. The game also adds a new boss, Kroctopus, and a new area, Pacifica, containing six additional levels.

Each installment had a UsefulNotes/GameBoy counterpart under the name ''Donkey Kong Land''. ''Land'' translated the pre-rendered graphics of its sister series as well as it could to the Game Boy's small, monochrome screen and usually featured new levels.

A RacingGame SpinOff appeared as ''VideoGame/DiddyKongRacing''. There was to be a sequel to ''Diddy Kong Racing'' called ''Donkey Kong Racing'' (go figure), but Rare's contract with Nintendo for usage of the Donkey Kong franchise ran out. Then Rare got bought out by Microsoft, demolishing any remaining hope that the contract might be renewed. However, Nintendo did toy with the franchise for a while, producing the ''VideoGame/DonkeyKonga'' trilogy of rhythm games with {{Namco}} as well as ''Videogame/DonkeyKongJungleBeat'', an action-platformer that is not set in the DKC continuity, but is nevertheless very reminiscent of its style. Following this, they handed the character over to Paon, a company that produced Donkey Kong King Of Swing for the Game Boy advance, Barrel Blast for the Wii and Jungle Climber for the DS.

''Donkey Kong Country'' also had a short-lived French CGI-animated series based off it; several elements from this show ended up in ''Donkey Kong 64''. Information on the series can be found [[WesternAnimation/DonkeyKongCountry here]].

In 2010, Creator/{{Nintendo}} and RetroStudios of ''Videogame/MetroidPrime'' fame released ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns'', a revival of the series with 2.5D graphics for the UsefulNotes/{{Wii}}. A sequel called ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryTropicalFreeze'' was released in early 2014 on the WiiU.

The characters in this series can be found [[Characters/DonkeyKong here]].
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!!'''Game-Specific Pages:'''
* The Original Trilogy
** ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry1''
** ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry2DiddysKongQuest''
** ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry3DixieKongsDoubleTrouble''
* ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong64''
* ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns''
** ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryTropicalFreeze''

----
!!'''Other tropes used:'''

* TwoAndAHalfD: Most notably ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns'', but the other three games were pioneers of this style, having prerendered 3D models to make the sprites and things in the background affecting the foreground.
** ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryTropicalFreeze'' expands on what ''Returns'' did by adding curving paths and CameraPerspectiveSwitch during segments like [[AutoScrollingLevel rocket barrel sequences]].
* AbandonedMine: Presumably, where the MinecartMadness takes place...
** The entire second world, considering that it's named "Monkey Mines".
* AbnormalAmmo: The speckled eggs that Squawks the parrot fires from its mouth. And in ''64'', four out of six Kongs use ''[[EdibleAmmunition food]]'' as ammo, another uses feathers, and one uses an almighty boot.
* AddedAlliterativeAppeal: Almost all the levels in the ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry'' series use either this trope or SublimeRhyme for the level names ("Hot-head Hop" "Gusty Glades," etc) Most of the rest rely on JustForPun; see ViewersAreGeniuses below.
* AdiposeRex: King K. Rool.
* AdvertisingCampaigns: Besides the many TV commercials, Nintendo sent a 15-minute behind the scenes VHS tape to most Magazine/NintendoPower subscribers. It featured interviews with the people who tested the game (in Redmond, Washington), a few game tips, and a teaser for ''VideoGame/KillerInstinct Gold'' for the Nintendo 64.
* AgitatedItemStomping: Diddy stomps on his hat whenever he loses a bonus game in the original game.
* AllThereInTheManual: The level and world names in ''Donkey Kong Land'', mostly because of limitations.
* AnimatedAdaptation: The French CGI cartoon ''WesternAnimation/DonkeyKongCountry''.
* AnimalsNotToScale: Nobody really cares since the games aren't meant to be taken seriously, but there are countless cases of animals that are much bigger than their real life counterparts, most notably giant insects, beavers and birds, and many that are much smaller, probably the most notable case being Rambi, who is about the same size as Donkey Kong, where real rhinos are the size of cars.
* ArtisticLicenseBiology:
** Ellie the Elephant in [=DKC3=]. Able to make truly impressive leaps and bounds, but real life elephants, famously, ''are not able to jump''.
** Apes can't swim, either. Especially not in icy or polluted water.
** Wasps and Hornets don't make honey.
* AscendedExtra: In an unusual non-character example, the GangplankGalleon. In the first game, it was briefly seen as the setting of the final boss battle. In ''[[VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry2DiddysKongQuest Diddy's Kong Quest]]'', not only has it been expanded into an full 5-level world, but the ''entire game'' is pirate themed, meaning lots of pirate outfits for the Kremlings and scattered pirate ship themed levels.
* AwesomeButImpractical: Funky's Barrel Plane in ''[=DKC1=]'', the lack of DK Coins or Kremlins in order to beat the game makes revisiting past areas absolutely useless. Unless, of course, you want to achieve 100%, but even that doesn't give you a special ending.
* BadassInDistress: Donkey Kong in ''[=DKC2=]'' and ''3''; Diddy Kong in ''3''.
* BashBrothers: Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong.
* BattleThemeMusic: Each game in the series has one score used for normal boss battles and another for K. Rool.
** Except for GBA DKC3, which has a separate theme for Arich, [[ObviousBeta but NOT for K. Rool!]] It seems they ran out of time when making the game's completely new soundtrack.
* BehindTheBlack: This concept's used in force to make HundredPercentCompletion [[NintendoHard damn near impossible]], especially given how [[GottaCatchThemAll many collectible items]] are in the [[UpdatedRerelease GBA remakes]]. Fortunately, Rare was merciful enough to give occasional hints of secrets: [[FollowTheMoney that banana is visible through those tree leaves / half-off-screen / in that "bottomless" pit for a reason]], and [[CameraScrew the field of view might gradually pan down / up / ahead]], in preparation for a LeapOfFaith. Slow down a bit and watch for it carefully.
* {{BFS}}: Kleever from ''[=DKC2=]''. Kutlasses from the same game [[DualWielding carries two cutlasses]] larger than himself.
* BigBad: King K. Rool
* BigBoosHaunt: ''[=DKC2's=]'' [[TheLostWoods Gloomy Gulch]]. A spooky and depressing region with dead forests, wailing ghost ropes, and even a haunted house filled with Kremling ghosts. You even fight the ghost of a previous boss at the end of it.
* BlackoutBasement: The first game has Stop & Go Station, Torchlight Trouble, the TropeNamer, and Loopy Lights in that order.
* BleakLevel: The caverns.
* BonusStage: The 2D games are absolutely loaded with hidden bonus areas of varying kinds. Finding them (and in [[=DKC2=] and 3, ''winning them'') is often necessary for achieving HundredPercentCompletion. [[spoiler:In order to do this for DKC or [=DKC2=], you'll have to find a bonus stage hidden ''[[GuideDangIt inside another bonus stage]]''. Not funny, Rare!]]
* BossArenaIdiocy:
** The first game:
*** You have to twice fight Necky, a boss that only can be hurt by jumping on its head. Unfortunately, its head is too high to Donkey or even Diddy reach. Good luck that someone unexplainably left a tire wheel lying around, right?
*** Boss Dumb Drum. He is an animated iron barrel that floats around and spits {{Mook}} relentlessly. Once on a while he descends to try to squash Donkey and Diddy down. All what they have to do to win is move out of the way when Drum does that, because he eventually breaks down. If he only spats enemies out and kept himself on air, they would be unable to win. In the Game Boy Advance version, Drum cannot damage himself this way. TNT barrels appear after you defeat a wave of mooks, which you must pick up and throw at him.
*** King K. Rool himself. You can only hurt him by jumping on his head. But he wears a spiked crown, so you can not jump on his head without hurting yourself. What does he do? Take off his crown and hurl it far away.
** In ''Donkey Kong Country 2'' you would be unable to pass beyond the first Boss - Krow - if he did not throw at you his own eggs - that you can pick and throw back at him.
** Baron K. Roolenstein in ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry 3''. If he hadn't installed levers in the ceiling that drop barrels, the kongs would have no way to hurt him.
** Most of the boss battles in ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong64'' have a random, convenient, COMPLETELY unnecessary exploding barrel in the middle of the room that, if removed, would make even the first boss impossible to defeat.
** The bosses in ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns'' were generally good about choosing locations that weren't potentially lethal towards them if utilized properly by Donkey and Diddy. The one glaringly obvious exception was Mangoruby, whose boss chamber contained three wheels with switches on them that, when pounded, would de-electrify Mangoruby's body and allow Donkey to GoombaStomp her.
* BossOnlyLevel: ''Every'' boss.
* BootstrappedTheme:
** JungleJapes is without a doubt the most popular music from the series, and is essentially used as the series' theme.
** [=DKC1=]'s bonus theme was remixed and made into [=DKC3=]'s main theme.
* BreakoutCharacter: When Diddy proved more popular than Donkey Kong in [=DKC1=], he was promoted to main character status in [=DKC2=], only to see ''his'' sidekick Dixie overshadow him and get promoted to main character in [=DKC3=].
* BrutalBonusLevel: The Lost World levels in [=DKC2=] and [=DKC3=], along with the boss fights at the end.
* BubblegloopSwamp: This series was the previous TropeNamer. Granted, "Krem Quay" wasn't [[Administrivia/NamingATrope the most understandable choice]].
* TheCaligula: King K. Rool.
* CanonForeigner: Bluster Kong, Eddie the Mean Old Yeti, and Polly Roger in the CGI cartoon.
* ChestMonster: In ''Donkey Kong Country 2'', "Klobbers" are Kremlings disguised as barrels until you come close. Ordinary Klobbers merely knock you around non-lethally, but yellow Klobbers knock bananas off of you, and black Klobbers (with their RedEyesTakeWarning) knock ''extra life balloons'' off of you (still non-lethally). And then there's the [[ActionBomb TNT Klobbers]].
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome:
** Chunky and Kiddy Kong haven't been showing up in any subsequent games, not even a [[SuperMarioBros Mario]] game. This is despite Kiddy Kong being announced to return in Donkey Kong Racing (which never came to be in the end).
** Rattly the Rattlesnake. Winky and Expresso at least got a ShoutOut here and there...
* CirclingBirdies: The player death animations in the SNES trilogy. Donkey Kong scratches his head, Diddy Kong gets circling stars, Dixie Kong covers her eyes and sobs, and Kiddy Kong(being a toddler) [[MostAnnoyingSound cries]].
* CompletionMeter: The game keeps track of bonus rooms and K-O-N-G letters the player finds in each level. The GameBoyAdvance port also has a virtual scrapbook for special pictures found in-game.
* ConvenientWeaknessPlacement: Many of the bosses in the Donkey Kong Country series have barrels or cannonballs that appear in the BossRoom for no reason, which you then use to damage the otherwise invincible boss. Some of the bosses may even [[TennisBoss hand you a barrel or cannonball]], usually at their end of their attack cycle (after which they would just stand there and wait for you to hit them with it).
* ContinuityNod: The fourth world in the first Land game is in fact the city that the very first DonkeyKong took place in, the one where the original Kong held Pauline hostage on top of a skyscraper.
* CoolOldGuy: Cranky Kong. He makes potions that help you in [=DK64=].
* CoolOldLady: Wrinkly Kong. She saves your game in [=DKC2=] and [=DKC3=].
* CrutchCharacter: When you get really good at [=DKC2=], Dixie turns into this. Diddy is just plain faster and navigates through tighter spaces.
* CutsceneIncompetence: [[AvertedTrope Averted]], narrowly. The GBA remake of [=DKC1=] adds an opening cutscene where Diddy's captured by a [[EliteMook Krusha]] and stuffed into a barrel. Diddy can't hurt Krushas on his own.
* DamnYouMuscleMemory:
** Haven't played the game in a decade or so? Just for fun, try replaying some of the bonus levels, especially the ones in the treetop worlds that involve the Kongs having to aim for a moving barrel offscreen. That's right. ''You can still do it.'' ... Now try messing up on purpose in these levels, say, to avoid the annoying animal bonus runs. You ''can't''.
** In the original trilogy, rolling/cartwheeling/ponytail spinning into an enemy would give you a burst of momentum, allowing you to easily take out whole rows of enemies with just one attack. In ''Donkey Kong Country Returns'', the roll goes farther and faster, but does not have this property. In the very first level, almost right away, you'll encounter three basic enemies in a row. If you try to roll through them all like in the old days, your roll will end ''just'' in time for you to slam into the third enemy and get hurt.
** That damned rocket barrel from Rocket Rush! Left fires the left rocket, which pushes you right, and vice versa...
* DarkerAndEdgier: ''Donkey Kong Country 2'' in comparison to the original. The Kremlings are pirates and are carrying weapons like cannons and cutlasses around, Donkey Kong has been kidnapped, and in comparison to the friendly jungles and temples of the original island, you're fighting on the home turf of the Kremlings this time, an island full of swamps, sunken ships, ghost-infested structures, and a castle. The game in general also has a darker and more foreboding visual and audio aesthetic.
* DeathThrows
* DigitizedSprites
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: The first game is starkly pared down compared to the latter two. In addition to having the animal-buddy-token bonuses unseen in any other installments, the first DKC game lacked hero coins and a secret world. Also, unlike the latter two games (and ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong64''), which forced you to win each bonus challenge to win every bonus prize, the first game simply expected you to ''find'' all the bonuses in order to get OneHundredPercentCompletion.
* EveryoneLovesBlondes: Donkey Kong for Candy Kong, and Diddy Kong for Dixie Kong. It's a [[TertiarySexualCharacteristics Tertiary Sexual Characteristic]], though there are exceptions too.
* EverythingTryingToKillYou: Subverted in a rather interesting fashion. There are enemies trying to kill you for no obvious reason (Zingers, Armys), but there are also numerous small animals that can be seen crawling, hopping, flying, or swimming around the levels. The latter have no effect on you; they're just scenery.
* ExplodingBarrels
* {{Faceship}}: The GangplankGalleon has K. Rool's head built at the front. The Flying Crock in ''[=DKC2=]'' has a Kremling head-shaped front.
* FatBastard: K. Rool.
* FlunkyBoss: Dumb Drum. Notably, you don't even harm the boss itself in the original SNES version and its Game Boy Color port. Just kill all the enemies it produces and it'll destroy itself.
* FollowTheLeader: It was obviously based on ''VideoGame/SuperMarioWorld'', but it does have its own original elements, like a frontal rolling attack, minecart rides, and secrets hidden in the walls. Though some still slam it for being a ''Mario'' clone.
* FollowTheMoney: Aside from the usual hints of bonuses, the bananas remind players how or when to use advanced moves in the early levels, and can be a last-second warning on how to avoid a death. It's subverted in a couple of {{Bonus Stage}}s in [=DKC2=] -- they're mazes, and the bananas indicate dead ends.
* ForTheEvulz: It seems the only reason K. Rool had his troops steal DK's banana hoard, aside from possibly food, was simply to steal it.
* GangplankGalleon: The TropeNamer is where you fight King K. Rool in the first game. It is also the first world in the second game.
* GenreSavvy: After a short while of playing any of these games, an observant player will be able to ''correctly'' guess where some of the secret areas and items are hidden, even without (entirely) relying on [[TrialAndErrorGameplay checking every possible wall or pit]].
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Literally. A few potential answers to Swanky's quizzes in [=DKC2=] are "Kaptain K. Rapp" and "K. Rapp's Keep".
** Even worse, in the GBA port of [=DKC=], Funky has been known to greet DK and Diddy with "Dude, tell Candy she can [[DoubleEntendre ride my wave]] anytime!"
** Watching the Klobbers bash into Dixie for too long in DKC2 is rumored to be bad for your sanity.
* GimmickLevel: lots of them, especially in the later games. Apparently, adding new enemies along with the obviously different level maps just wasn't enough. At least half the levels in the SNES series had [[TheOneWith unique or very rare gimmicks]]. A few examples:
** RiseToTheChallenge: [[GrimyWater Toxic Tower]] and [[InvincibleMinorMinion Slime Climb]] in #2; [[GreenAesop Ripsaw Rage]] and [[KillItWithFire Kong-Fused Cliffs]] in #3
** GravityScrew: Low-G Labyrinth
** InterfaceScrew: [[DamnYouMuscleMemory Poisonous Pipeline]]
** TimedMission: Haunted Hall and Riverside Race (and Doorstop Dash, to a lesser extent)
* GottaCatchEmAll: In [=DKC1=], you don't have to collect a darn thing if you don't want, and the only difference in the ending is that a single line of dialogue from Cranky will be changed very slightly if you found everything. In [=DKC2=], you have to collect all the Kremcoins in order to access all the levels, but the DK Coins are merely an extra challenge for the player, not necessary in any way. Things started getting out of hand with [=DKC3=], where you really did have to collect all of the Bonus Coins and DK coins to get the best ending, including finding all of the Banana Birds in the overworld. And then [=DK64=] took things UpToEleven, with 500 bananas, 25 golden bananas, five blueprints, and two banana fairies in each level, including the overworld[[note]]The overworld doesn't have any non-golden bananas to collect, but makes up for it by having an unaccounted-for sixth banana for Tiny Kong to find.[[/note]].
* GreenAesop: Done in a subtle fashion. The Kremlings own grim and polluted factory areas like Kremkroc Industries and Mekanos, and have ruined Crocodile Isle with oil, toxic waste and trash, while the Kongs live happily on Donkey Kong Isle, in harmony with nature. In addition, Frantic Factory is shown as being a dreary and depressing place, with spooky music and a dark atmosphere.
* GrumpyBear: Cranky Kong, obviously.
* GuideDangIt: The locations of some of the bonus rooms.
** One memorable example: In [=DKC1=], the entrance to one of the bonus rooms is hidden ''[[UpToEleven within ANOTHER bonus room!]]'' AND you are required to [[ViolationOfCommonSense go against your own common sense]] to get to it, with [[MoonLogicPuzzle virtually no hints to do so!]] [[note]]To elaborate, the first level of Kremkroc Industries Inc. (Oil Drum Alley) has a bonus room with a slot-machine style mini-game with prize choices of a 1up, an animal token and a banana. Choosing the banana in a normal bonus room of this type gives you exactly that; a single banana worth exactly 1/100th of a 1up, normally intended as a booby prize. Choosing it ''here'', however, gives you a barrel instead. Why? So you can use that barrel to break the wall opposite the way you came in, of course! It doesn't help that the only hints to do this are that the aforementioned wall normally has a completely cosmetic exit that is easily ignored, and two arrow signs pointing to the right, towards the wall, which are ALSO easily overlooked, as they are part of the normal stage background. But there's one final screw-you from all this. Even if you figure all that out, if you simply ''throw'' the barrel at the wall, the barrel will break and the mini-game you are ''currently'' in will end without going into the second one since you just "spent" your "prize". Rather, you have to ''lunge yourself'' at the wall, while holding the barrel, so that when the wall breaks, your momentum will carry you into bonus room #2 before bonus room #1 ends. Whew![[/note]]
* HailfirePeaks: Sunken Spruce from the GBA port of [=DKC3=] combines a tree level with UnderTheSea.
** Demolition Drain-Pipe, also from 3, combines DownTheDrain with MineCartMadness.
** Donkey Kong Land 2, due to cartridge space reasons, combined both [[LethalLavaLand Crocodile Cauldron]] and [[BubblegloopSwamp Krem Quay]] into Krem Cauldron.
* HardLevelsEasyBosses: The first game, for the most part, with the exception of [[BigBad K. Rool]] himself. And even he can be pretty easy if you're careful.
* HeliCritter[=/=]HelicopterHair: Dixie Kong, who uses her ponytail as a propeller.
* HooksAndCrooks: The Krook enemy throws [[PrecisionGuidedBoomerang boomeranging]] hooks at you.
* HugeRiderTinyMount: Donkey Kong and Winky and Expresso, later Kiddy and Squawks and Squitter. Rattly and Ellie got off easy...
* HumanoidFemaleAnimal: Of the Kongs from [=DKC=], Candy is the most human looking; the next Kong to get this treatment is Tiny [[SheIsAllGrownUp after her age up]].
* HundredPercentCompletion: Played with. [=DKC=] 1 actually goes up to 101%, [=DKC=] 2 goes up to 102%, and [=DKC3=] goes up to 103%. You can even take the last one up to 105% by using a special cheat code which makes the game harder.
** Strangely, ''Donkey Kong Land III'' also goes up to 103%, but the first two [=DKL=] games only went up to 100%.
* HyperactiveSprite: Whichever Kong's following you in ''[=DKC3=]''. Probably the code to make them stand still got removed to make space in a 32 megabit cartridge.
* IdleAnimation: In the first game, Donkey Kong will beat his chest and whoop, Diddy will take off his cap and scratch his head. In the second game, Diddy will start juggling, and Dixie will blow bubblegum and drink a soda as she does in the third game, while Kiddy will pull at a loose thread in his romper suit and eventually pull too hard and fall over. In the hive levels, Dixie will eat the honey off the walls she can cling on to.
* ImprovisedPlatform: Squitter can create spiderwebs in the air as platforms.
** One level of 3 requires throwing barrels in the water as platforms as the water is infested with [[InvincibleMinorMinion a Nibbla]].
* InfiniteFlashlight: Squawks in the first game and Glimmer in the second.
* InsectQueen: Queen B., queen of the Zingers. The [[VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry2DiddysKongQuest sequel]] introduced her apparent mate, King Zing, boss of an area full of [[HornetHole Hornet Holes]].
* InvincibilityPowerUp: The exclamation point barrel.
* InvincibleMinorMinion: Croctopus and Clambos in [=DKC1=], Red Zingers in [=DKC2=], and Red Buzzes, Kopters and Kuchukas in [=DKC3=] to name a few.
* ItsAWonderfulFailure: In [=DKC1=], you are treated to a depressing screen of Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong in bandages when you get a game over. In [=DKC2=], Diddy and Dixie are locked away in a prison cell and then the screen turns red... suggesting that a terrible fate was brought about [[TakeThatAudience by your failure]]. In [=DKC3=], players are treated to a [[NightmareFuel somewhat disturbing]] scene of Dixie and Kiddy locked away [[FateWorseThanDeath in a baby's crib inside a dark room]].
* JustifiedExtraLives: In the original trilogy, the Extra Life Balloons are just there for you to collect. In ''Returns'', they play a more involving role by carrying Donkey and/or Diddy back into the stage after dying, and during co-op, if one player dies but the other is still active, one of your balloons will eventually carry in a new DK Barrel for you to break and get the other player back in the game.
* KaizoTrap:
** King K.Rool loves this. There's [[CreditsGag fake credits]] in the middle of the final fight in the first game, and his last attack can kill you after you beat him in the second game.
** In the GBA version of ''[=DKC2=]'', it is possible to [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3EaVcRyDSM die right as you beat Kerozene]].
* KingMook:
** Every boss in ''[=DKC1=]'' including K. Rool; Krow and King Zing in ''[=DKC2=]'', Barbos in ''[=DKC3=]''.
** Lampshaded in [=DK64=] in the [[AllThereInTheManual manual]] by Cranky Kong. As well, there's a giant beaver near the end of the first level, but it's not the boss.
* KooshBomb: Used as an impact effect whenever any character gets hit.
* LampshadeHanging: Cranky Kong does this a lot by complaining about the generally silly tone amongst other things. See also MetaGuy below.
* LastNoteNightmare: The series' Nightmare Fuel page cites the death-against-K-Rool music [[DummiedOut to have been cut]] (from a game with so much Nightmare Fuel, no less) because it was ''too scary''. The Last Note Nightmare trope is the exact reason behind that.
* LeadTheTarget: It's not done by a gunman, but rather, bolts of lightning in the Lightning Lookout level of ''[=DKC3=]''. The bolts of lightning will always hit you if you constantly hold forward.
* LegacyCharacter: Cranky Kong is the DK from the early 1980s arcade games. Along those lines, it's mentioned in various sources that the main character of these games was Donkey Kong, Jr. from the game of the same name.
* LighterAndSofter: ''Donkey Kong Country 3'' in comparison to the second game, and perhaps even the first game. After the very gloomy setting in ''Donkey Kong Country 2'' (Which was [[DarkerAndEdgier darker and edgier]] than it's ''own'' predecessor as mentioned above), the Kremlings have dropped the whole Pirate Motif, they don't carry weapons anymore, the enemy lineup is much goofier (Kremlings slipping on ice? Cannon Wielding Owls? A ''crosshair''?), and you spend much of the game exploring beautiful lakesides, lush green forests, clear waterfalls and swimming in beautiful blue waters. The game in general has a brighter and much more friendly and ambient visual and audio aesthetic this time around.
* LiveItem: The Banana Birds.
* TheLostWoods: Vine Valley in [=DKC1=], Gloomy Gulch in [=DKC2=], and Kremwood Forest in [=DKC3=].
* MadScientist: K. Rool(enstein) in [=DKC3=]''. Cranky is depicted this way in Donkey Kong 64, providing powerups in the form of potions.
* MakeMyMonsterGrow: King K. Rool at the end of Jungle Climber.
* MascotMook: While many would be tempted to just say the Kremlings, the enemy who's the most qualified are the Zingers. Not just because they appear in so many games, but they tend to have the most minimal changes between games compared to the other enemies.
* MascotWithAttitude: Donkey Kong.
* MeaningfulName:
** K. Rool (pronounced as "Cruel").
** Also Diddy, whose name means "short".
* MediumAwareness: Cranky Kong is constantly complaining about the game's graphics, [[NostalgiaFilter recalling the "good old days"]] (he was the original ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong'' from the arcade games).
* MetaGuy: Cranky Kong is aware that he is in a game and complains of the newer superior graphics as opposed to the single screen gameplay of back in his day.
* MineCartMadness: In the first game, there is Mine Cart Carnage and the TropeNamer. In the second game there is Target Terror, Rickety Race, and Haunted Hall (see RuleofThree below).
* MonogenderMonsters: The Kremlings, though finally subverted in ''Donkey Kong: Barrel Blast/Jet Race''.
* MookMaker: Dumb Drums in [=DKC1=], and the little holes that spawn Bazzas and Lemguins in [=DKC3=].
* MoreTeethThanTheOsmondFamily: Many enemies qualify, but Klaptrap, Klampon, Krimp, Lockjaw, and Snapjaw in particular.
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: King K. Rool (Cruel AND a Hard K sound in the name), and every single villain in the entire series. It helps that K. Rool is kind of a bumbler, though. With homicidal - er, apecidal intent, but still a bumbler.
%%* NintendoHard: The whole series is pretty challenging, but ''especially'' [=DKC2=].
* NoFourthWall: The original series derived a lot of humor from this, although it was toned down as the series progressed. Perhaps the most extreme example was Donkey Kong Land's instruction manual story, where Cranky argued with DK and Diddy that Donkey Kong Country was only successful because of its graphics, and dared them to defeat K. Rool again on the inferior Game Boy. Most game manuals back then had a "notes" page for players to scribble in. Cranky lampshades "Does anyone actually use these pages? Waste of paper if you ask me."
* NonIndicativeName: Poison Pond. An underwater level where you swim around in water that is colored green but, strangely enough, does not harm you at all.
* NonLethalKO: Any time you lose a life, they go flying, followed by a short animation of them getting knocked out before being sent back to the map screen.
* NonMammalMammaries: Kalypso.
* NonStandardGameOver: In the first DKC game, there are certain mine levels where you had to ride a moving platform. Destroying this platform (i.e. no fuel left) caused Donkey Kong/Diddy Kong to go through the animation when they lose a bonus round (balloon pop at the end), and you return to the Overworld map.
* OfficialCouple: Diddy and Dixie are canonically boyfriend and girlfriend. As are DK and Candy.
* OneHitPointWonder: In all three DKC games. In ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong64'', the characters start off with four hit points, with Candy Kong giving them an extra four on two occasions. ''DKC Returns'' allows the characters to take two hits before going down.
* OrphanedSeries: After Rare went to {{Microsoft}}, the series had to live with its "absentee uncle" Creator/{{Nintendo}}[[note]]Who owns the rights to the characters and franchise since it was a Nintendo creation to begin with.[[/note]] for a while and was eventually adopted by Paon, then later Retro Studios. Rare lost custody, but still gets to visit the series on handhelds as Microsoft doesn't have its own.
* PaletteSwap: Klubba and Kudgel in [=DKC2=], as well as numerous minor enemies. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] by Cranky Kong in the GBA port of [=DKC1=].
-->'''Cranky:''' It's just like the old days, reusing the boss, changing its color and pretending it's completely new.
* PeripheryDemographic: Invoked with Wrinkly playing on a cutting-edge game system.
* PiranhaProblem: Lockjaw and Snapjaw from [=DKC2=], Nibbla from [=DKC3=].
* {{Pirates}}: The Kremlings become pirates for no particular reason (besides the RuleOfCool) in ''Donkey Kong Country 2''.
* ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything: They do lots of evil things, but no actual pirating other than stealing bananas.
* PowerupMount: Most of the Animal Buddies you meet throughout the games; Rambi the Rhino is particularly iconic of the series. Enguarde and Squawks are the only Animal Buddies to appear in ALL of the first three games, though Enguarde is the only one who's rideable in every appearance.
* PrehensileHair: Dixie Kong uses her ponytail to pick up barrels, and as a helicopter blade, which makes her a GameBreaker. The player's guide flat out tells you to use her in "Parrot Chute Panic" as opposed to the Purple Squacks who can only slow your fall.
* PreviousPlayerCharacterCameo: Cranky Kong.
* ThePsychoRangers: Except for one secret character, ''Barrel Blast'' paired a Kremling with identical stats against each Kong; some of them were [[AscendedExtra Ascended]] {{Mooks}}, while others were completely new characters.
* RecurringBoss: Obviously K. Rool, but Krow from the second game is fought twice. Once at its nest, [[spoiler:and once as a ghost.]]
* RecycledSoundtrack: The Game Boy Color port of [=DKC=] lifted songs from ''Donkey Kong Land'' and ''[=DKL=] III''.
* RedEyesTakeWarning: Kloak and Kackle from the second game.
* RegionalBonus: The Japanese version of ''Donkey Kong Land III'' was for the Game Boy Color. Unfortunately, it was missing animation frames and your last time displayed at the bottom of the screen during time trials over the Game Boy version.
* RememberTheNewGuy: Cranky Kong's wife Wrinkly appeared out of nowhere in [=DKC2=].
* ReptilesAreAbhorrent: Kremlings are both the main reptiles and the main villains in most of the series, and most of them are evil.
* RetiredBadass: It's easy to forget that Cranky was the ''original'' Donkey Kong.
* RhinoRampage: Rambi
* RollingAttack: Donkey Kong and Kiddy Kong have a rolling attack, while Diddy Kong has a cartwheel attack. Armies also do this.
* RuleofThree: In Donkey Kong Country 2, each "habitat" has three levels dedicated to it (not counting boss stages). For instance, Lockjaw's Locker, Lava Lagoon, Glimmer's Galleon are the three sunken ships levels, while Target Terror, Rickety Race, and (the admittedly background-swapped) Haunted Hall make up the roller coaster triad.
* SaveGameLimits: The first game suffers from a major dearth of save points, with a save point popping up every four or five levels on average. That doesn't sound too bad, but keep in mind, this game is NintendoHard. You didn't necessarily have to reach a save point before you could save; technically you could use Funky Kong to fly back to save points in previous levels, but it still made saving more of a hassle than it should have been.
* SceneryPorn: The Rare games are chock full of it.
* SchmuckBait: Yes, some of those bunches of bananas can be grabbed... if you don't mind [[BottomlessPits redoing]] the level. Inverted with lone bananas, invariably [[ViolationOfCommonSense a bottomless pit with a single banana (or sometimes no bananas!) will leads to a]] BonusStage or something. However, in ''[=DKC2=]'' and ''[=DKC3=]'', you can have your partner mount your shoulders by tapping the A button and throw him/her at the banana hovering at the bottomless pit. Don't worry. He/she'll come back.
* SealedGoodInACan
* SequelSnark: In the GBA remake, after the Kongs jump overboard and King K. Rool sails off, [[MetaGuy Cranky]] remarks, "Call that an ending? Looks like a cheap stunt setting up the story for the sequel!" In the Hero Mode ending, he tells Diddy, "You have really surpassed yourself! Who knows? Maybe you'll make the sequel."
* SequenceBreaking: Not so much in ''[=DKC3=]'', but in ''[=DKC2=]'' several jumping puzzles can be avoided by using Dixie's helicopter spin to glide over them.
* SeriousBusiness: The Donkey Kong Universe, originally. Though nowadays they just poke fun at their [[FanWank crazy theories]] and attempts to expain discrepancies, such as the Kongs having extra fingers in Mario sports titles, two Enguardes in Coral Capers, and changes to the story in the remakes.
* ShoutOut: Some of the levels were named after music references. "Vulture Culture" is also the name of an album by Music/TheAlanParsonsProject, and "FearFactory" is the same name of a metal band that popped up at the time of the game's release.
** In [=DKC2=], Cranky mentions wanting to play ''VideoGame/KillerInstinct'', yet also gripes that it must be a bad game simply because he is not in it. ''Donkey Kong Land III'' also features a mill level called "[[{{Pun}} Miller Instinct]]".
** [=DKC3=] has Wrinkly occasionally playing her {{Nintendo 64}} when you go to save... when that's the case, you can clearly hear a rearrangement of the ''VideoGame/SuperMario64'' castle theme.
** Also, when you start a bonus stage in [=DKC3=], the music starts by going "BAH-BAH doo, BAH-BAH doo"... quite similar to the main theme to a popular spy movie series, the latest of which was being [[VideoGame/GoldenEye1997 adapted to a video game]] by Rare at the time [=DKC3=] came out...
** After you destroy KAOS in 3, K. Rool says "He was my ticket to world domination... and I would have gotten away with it too, [[Franchise/ScoobyDoo if it wasn't for you meddling kids]]!"
* SlippySlideyIceWorld: There's one of these in practically every game. In [=DKC3=], there are enemies in these areas called Slippa, who literally slip and slide around the area trying to run into you (though you yourself do not slide).
* TheSmurfettePrinciple: Candy Kong is the only female Kong in the first game, and the closest thing to a female enemy being Queen B. Later games included a few more female characters, such as Dixie and Wrinkly in the second and third games (with Candy not appearing in those) and Tiny Kong in 64. Even bird characters who could lay/spit eggs were male, if gender was specified at all. Ellie is the only female [[PowerupMount animal buddy]] in the whole series, if ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongJungleBeat'' is ignored.
* SoundtrackDissonance: Ripsaw Rage from [=DKC3=] contains a giant saw slowly creeping up a treehouse level as calm music plays. The new happy-go-lucky music in the GBA version is even more dissonant.
* SpellingBonus: Though what they do varies form game to game, every game in the series grants some sort of bonus if you collect trinkets labeled K-O-N-G.
* TheSpiny: Zingers. Beating them typically requires a thrown barrel, an animal ally, or invincibility.
** Red Zingers take it UpToEleven, being completely invulnerable except to TNT barrels.
** [=DKC2=] has an enemy actually called Spiny, and it fits the trope, while [=DKC3=] has an enemy called Bristles. The only way to kill them is to roll into them head on or just throw a barrel at them.
* StrangeSecretEntrance: Some secret levels are accessed by unintuitively jumping down "bottomless" pits into off-screen barrel cannons.
* SuperDrowningSkills: In ''Donkey Kong Land 3'', there is at least one section where the Kongs transform into Squitter and must travel through water-filled caves. Touching the water causes Squitter to lose one of his two hit points.
* SuperNotDrowningSkills: Played straight in the N64 and in the Country/Land trilogy. The Kongs can stay underwater indefinitely without needing air. Averted in ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountryReturns'', where both Donkey and Diddy Kong [[SuperDrowningSkills drown the moment they fall into water]]. Also averted in the Gyrocopter missions in the GBA version of [=DKC2=], which have an air meter.
* SuperTitle64Advance: In Japan, the series is called ''Super Donkey Kong''.
* SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute: Most enemies introduced in the original game don't appear in the two sequels, but have obvious analogues. In ''Donkey Kong 64'', most of the original enemies from the first game returned, leaving their substitutes high and dry (Klobber and Kablam from [=DKC2=] also appeared, but they had no analogue in the first game).
* TagTeam: the Kongs can switch out if both are out. Averted in the ''Land'' trilogy due to limitations.
* TakeThat:
** "Where '''''YOU''''' gonna find it? '''''NOT''''' on {{Sega}}. '''''NOT''''' on [[SegaGenesis 32X adaptors]]. '''''NOT''''' on CD-ROM. It's [[KillerApp only for]] '''''SUPER NES.'''''"
** The whole plot of ''Donkey Kong Land'' is a response to Shigeru Miyamoto verbally trashing DKC in an interview.
** In ''Donkey Kong Country 2'', Cranky Kong opens a museum for (Nintendo) Video Game Heroes. VideoGame/EarthwormJim's gun and ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog's shoes can be seen tossed next to a trash can with a sign that says "NO HOPERS" on it.
* TenSecondFlashlight: Gleamin' Bream in the third game. Poking him with Enguarde will get him to light the area around him for a few seconds. Also applies to the barrels that temporarily lights up the screen in Glimmer's Galleon in Donkey Kong Land 2.
** There's also both Stop And Go Station and Loopy Lights in the first, both featuring the [[InvincibleMinorMinion Rock]] [[DemonicSpiders Krocs]].
* TertiarySexualCharacteristics: The female Kongs have long blonde hair. And Dixie has pink toenails.
** Of course you'd be forgetting that Candy has, and always had, a decent pair of, ahem, secondaries.
* ThemeNaming: Damn near every species of Kremling has [[XtremeKoolLetterz a name which includes "K", usually as the initial.]] The name sums up either its appearance or its behavior. Just a few of [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters dozens of examples]]:
** Kutlass wildly swings 2 long blades
** Klasp hangs from horizontal ropes and vines; Klinger climbs vertical ropes and chains
** Kloak wears a huge jacket that conceals his face when he attacks.
** Kackle makes an evil laugh when one of your characters dies in his level.
** Kopter drifts high and low with his blade-spinning
** Rekoil bounces very high, and very quickly
** Bazuka fires barrels across chasms; some as stepping stones, others as lethal obstacles
** Both Klobber and Knocka [[FoeTossingCharge are strong enough to bump the Kongs off ledges]]!
** Krackshot is (apparently) the enemy who shoots from offscreen in [=DKC3's=] level bearing his name.
** [[EliteMooks Krusha, Kruncha, and Krumple]] are far too brawny to be harmed by certain basic attacks. If you forget, Krusha and Krumple will remind you with a [[LampshadeHanging mocking chuckle]], while Kruncha will [[TurnsRed turn red]] with anger, roaring as he does.
* TitleConfusion: Between the official soundtrack and the GBA version. Which one's "DK Island Swing" and which one's "Simian Segue"?
* TotallyRadical: Funky, natch.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: What else? Bananas!
* TreeTopTown: Two such levels in the first game, one of which is the TropeNamer.
* TurnsRed: Some of the bosses. Also the Kruncha enemies in ''[=DKC2=]'', if you jump on them. They also get faster, but after a while they get back to their usual blue tone.
* UndergroundMonkey: The GBA port of the first game was particularly plagued with them, although they do show up elsewhere.
* UnderTheSea: The coral reef levels in the first and third games, the ship hold and melting ice cavern levels in the second.
* UniqueEnemy: Numerous times, especially in [=DKC3=]; see trope article for examples.
* UpdatedRerelease:
** The trilogy for the SNES was remade for the GameBoyAdvance with some additional content and some improved sound effects. The first one also was remade on the gameboy color with one new level.
** Donkey Kong Country Returns received a update (new easy mode and more levels) for the Nintendo3DS.
* VideoGameFlight: Squawks the Parrot lends wings to the Kongs in certain levels, which tend to be aerial mazes. Also, in ''Donkey Kong 64'', Diddy Kong can fly with Rocketbarrels--a jetpack made out of barrels fueled by magical coconut-shaped crystals.
* WakeUpCallBoss: Queen B from the first game, Kudgel from the second game, and Barbos from the third game. Kleever from the second game as the second boss in both Country and Land (where his name is misspelled as [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Kleaver]]) also fits.
* WhenIWasYourAge: Cranky Kong, in spades. A typical criticism:
-->'''Cranky:''' We never had any of this fancy 3D stuff in my day. Oh no, we had to survive on what we had! And what little we did have, we were happy with!
* AWinnerIsYou: Conquering Donkey Kong Land nets you a single word of congratulations as the plain-text credits roll.
* XtremeKoolLetterz: Everything related to the Kremlings replaces any hard C with a K, la ''MortalKombat''. Also appears in the form of including "krem" in other words, such as in the name of [[spoiler: [=DKC3's=] [[BonusDungeon hidden final area]], the inactive volcano Krematoa. Completing its 5 levels forces the appearance of the BonusBoss in his docked submarine, the Knautilus!]].
* YouWouldntHitAGuyWithGlasses: In the standard ending of ''3'', Cranky insults the protagonists' performance, and they surround him, apparently to beat him up. As they close in, Cranky puts on a pair of glasses and says the line.
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->'''SelfDemonstrating/CrankyKong:''' You kids have it easy with all these wikis and trope catalogs! Back in my day, if you wanted to find out information about your favorite video games, you'd have to wait every month for gaming magazines to come in the mail to read developer interviews and trivia collections. And by golly, we'd never develop any of these silly [[TVTropesWillRuinYourLife editing addictions]] back then!
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