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Video Game / Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest

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Diddy: What about me? I went with Donkey on his last adventure! Why can't I do?!
Cranky: You? You've only been in one game, and you didn't even get your name in the title! You think that makes you a hero?
DKC2 Manual

The second game in Rare's Donkey Kong Country trilogy for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, released in 1995. A port was released for the Game Boy Advance in 2004.

While relaxing at the beach, Donkey Kong is kidnapped by Kaptain K. Rool (an alter ego of the first game's villain, King K. Rool) and held for ransom for the Kongs' banana hoard. Instead, Diddy, accompanied by his girlfriend Dixie, decides to go after K. Rool and rescue DK themselves, starting by invading the Kremlings' ship and venturing through Crocodile Isle to get him back.

Diddy's Kong Quest significantly adds to the mechanics introduced in the first game. Bonuses are no longer simply free ways to gain bananas and lives, but challenges in and of themselves, offering Kremcoins as rewards, used for another introduced mechanic: A secret world. In addition, this is the game that first introduces "hero coins," giant coins with the word "DK" on them, one of which is found in each level.


The best-selling standalone game for the SNES, with over five million copies sold, good for sixth-best-selling overallnote . Like its predecessor, Diddy's Kong Quest received a follow-up on the Game Boy in the form of Donkey Kong Land 2, the second game in the Land series. This game is unique in that it kept the names of all but two of the worlds in Diddy's Kong Quest (the two worlds in question instead had their names combined), but otherwise the levels were completely different from its SNES counterpart.

Followed a year later by Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!.


Tropes featured:

  • Absurdly Short Level: Stronghold Showdown is around two screens long. Diddy and Dixie enter the room, see Donkey Kong, and then exit. Averted in the GBA remake, which adds a boss battle to the level.
  • Action Girl: Dixie Kong. Diddy is slightly more agile, but her hair spin makes her just as capable.
  • Advancing Boss of Doom: King Zing in Rambi Rumble. Haunted Hall combines this with Stalked by the Bell, where the player is chased by a slowly advancing Kackle and has to collect plus sign barrels to add to the time limit and push him back.
  • Airborne Mook: Zingers, Flitters, Mini Neckies, and Kloak.
  • Alluring Anglerfish: Glimmer.
  • Ash Face: Happens to Kaptain K. Rool in the final boss battle when his blunderbuss explodes. Multiple times.
  • Autobots, Rock Out!: The Final Boss theme "Crocodile Cacophony" features an electric guitar for a portion of its melody, providing some intense rock music for the battle.
  • Back from the Dead: In Gloomy Gulch, the fifth world, you fight the ghost of Krow, the first world's boss.
  • Background Boss: Kerozene, the K. Rool's Keep boss added in the GBA version.
  • Badass in Distress: Donkey Kong.
  • Bait-and-Switch Boss: Considering its name and level theme, K. Rool's Keep leads one to believe its boss will be K. Rool. Instead, the player gets just a cutscene in the SNES version and a different boss for the GBA version, while K. Rool waits in a secret world afterward.
  • Battle Couple: Diddy and Dixie Kong.
  • Benevolent Architecture: In many of the boss battles, weapons you need in order to hurt the boss conveniently fall near you after a certain amount of time has passed.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Gloomy Gulch mixes this with The Lost Woods.
  • Big Damn Heroes: During the first boss fight with K. Rool, when he gets up for the third time and it's clear that Diddy and Dixie can't quite close out the fight, Donkey Kong struggles loose and uppercuts K. Rool to deal a finishing blow.
  • Blackout Basement: An underwater version in Glimmer's Galleon.
  • Boss Remix:
  • Brutal Bonus Level: The Lost World. Access to a level can be bought for each world at 15 Kremkoins each from Klubba's Kiosk. They are much harder than the regular levels, which is saying much. Specific levels of note:
    • "Animal Antics" because of the infamous area forcing you to fly through tight bramble passages as Squawks while the constantly shifting wind keeps blowing you forward and back.
    • "Klobber Karnage," which forces you to move over large pits of spikes in barrels, trying to time the tilting of the barrel and when to shoot into another barrel to avoid hitting bees, requiring tight timing.
  • Bubblegloop Swamp: Krem Quay (former Trope Namer)
  • The Cameo: Cranky's Video Game Heroes Hall of Fame (if the player doesn't collect enough DK Coins to bump any of them out of the top three) includes Mario, Yoshi and Link. Sonic the Hedgehog's shoes and Earthworm Jim's blaster can be seen next to a trashcan in the corner marked "No Hopers".
  • Cash Gate: To access the Lost World, Klubba needs to be paid in Kremcoins. Otherwise, trying to fight him will just shove Diddy and Dixie off the screen.
  • Challenge Run: Inputting B, A, RIGHT, RIGHT, A, LEFT, A, X (BARRAL AX) in the cheats menu makes all DK barrels disappear.
  • Chest Monster: In addition to the regular ones that bump you around and the TNT versions that explode on contact, this game also has yellow Klobbers that knock bananas out of you and black Klobbers with red eyes that can even bump lives out of you.
  • Circus Synths: Target Terror and Rickety Race, the skullcart-riding levels in Krazy Kremland - half-circus, half Amusement Park of Doom - are accompanied by Disco Train, a catchy techno/disco fusion, that nicely reflects the frantic nature of the levels themselves. Unfortunately it can't really be appreciated in-game, as it's obscured by the sound of grinding rails, signals and fireworks, and it doesn't help that both levels aren't exempt from the game's legendary difficulty. The ending music for both Diddy and Dixie also gets a techno treatment.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: During the first fight against Kaptain K. Rool in the Flying Krock, K. Rool is seen beating a tied-up Donkey Kong with the butt of his blunderbuss, followed by shooting three (comically large) cannonballs point-blank.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Crocodile Cauldron, to the extent that some crocodiles can apparently lie in the lava with only their heads above the surface while Diddy and Dixie have no problem hopping on their heads, inches away from the lava. Hell, in Redhot Ride, hot air balloons can sink halfway under the lava.
  • Cool Airship: The Flying Krock.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Donkey Kong takes out K. Rool in a single punch.
  • Darker and Edgier: 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.
  • Deader Than Dead: Kreepy Krow, already dead after his previous defeat as Warm-Up Boss Krow, goes poof — presumably into the afterlife for good — after being defeated again.
  • Degraded Boss: The GBA-exclusive boss Kerosene fights you with Kleevers. Unlike the Kleever fought in Crocodile Cauldron, the ones used by Kerosene can be defeated in one hit.
  • Difficulty Spike:
    • Worlds 3 and 4 are often viewed as the time the game starts getting tough, most notably with Slime Climb in the former and Bramble Scramble in the latter.
    • The Lost World levels are also notably difficult. The K. Rool boss fight, on the other hand... not so much, since he only requires one hit (though landing that one hit does require the player to dodge some tricky projectile patterns).
  • Disney Villain Death: After K. Rool is defeated, he falls off his ship into the lake below, where he is devoured by sharks. Also doubles as Black Comedy due to the cartoonish chomping noises heard.note  It also counts as a Disney Death, since he survives.
  • Dreadful Dragonfly: The Flitters, big blue dragonflies from the Kremling Krew that patrol definite paths and hurt Diddy and Dixie should they touch the darners. Thankfully, they are quite weak.
  • Dummied Out: Diddy and Dixie's mourning sprites, as well as death and victory themes made especially for the final bosses.
  • E = MC Hammer: Parodied; a chalkboard at the Kong Kollege reads "9÷3=6", "8×1=9", and "4+2=5" under the title "Exam". The joke, of course, is that the Kremlings that attend the school are dumb.
  • Elevator Action Sequence: Castle Crush is this — except, as the name indicates, the player fights more against the various walls and ceilings trying to squish the player against the rising floor.
  • Evil Weapon: Kleaver, the boss of Crocodile Cauldron, is a living variety of this.
  • Excited Title! Two-Part Episode Name!: The boss levels are given this treatment in the Japanese localization.
  • Eye Pop: Comically done by Diddy and Dixie at the start of a boss fight.
  • Feathered Fiend: Krow and Screech.
  • Five-Man Band: The Kongs form one again, like in the previous game. Diddy is now The Leader with Dixie as The Lancer, Cranky and Funky reprise their role as The Smart Guy and The Big Guy respectively, and Wrinkly replaces Candy as The Chick. Donkey Kong himself is the Sixth Ranger as he gets to Megaton Punch K. Rool in the end. Swanky doesn't count as he's not exactly helping you.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: There's a bug in Castle Crush that crashes the game, and from there can generally end in three ways: option one is nothing important happens, option two is all of your saves getting deleted, and the third option, if luck isn't on your side, can render the game cartridge itself pretty much screwed over beyond repair — thus being a literal game-breaking bug. People experimenting with the bug have reported it's capable of corrupting emulators — it's not outside the realm of possibility it could have bricked an entire SNES if it did something to the ROM chips. The Virtual Console release, which stores ROM information as read-only, seems immune to this effect (though not the save file corruption/erasure).
  • Gangplank Galleon: The first world and Trope Namer, continuing the theme of the previous game.
  • Ghost Pirate: Kloak and Kackle are Kremling Ghost Pirates, as well as Kreepy Krow, the ghost of the first boss in the game. As you may expect, you'll encounter them within Gloomy Gulch.
  • Giant Hands of Doom: Kerozene in the GBA remake.
  • Golden Ending: The true ending, only accessible by completing the Lost World, sees Crocodile Isle sinking and K. Rool escaping in a fit of Evil Laughter, with Donkey, Diddy and Dixie watching from a cliff.
  • The Goomba: Neek, the rat enemy and first enemy you encounter.
  • Grimy Water: The water in the swamp levels is extremely murky and is entirely non-swimmable unlike other instances of water throughout the SNES games. Falling into it has the same effect as a Bottomless Pit.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • The hero coin in Bramble Scramble, which expects you to jump through a fake wall of brambles. Only a stray banana and the subtle movement of the camera tips the player off.
      • You'll find the exit to this secret area later in the level, blocked by a one-way barrel. It's possible to enter between the barrel and the bramble, but you'll likely sacrifice a Kong in the process.
    • The second bonus in Chain Link Chamber, in the door behind the Kannons. Not only does it seem just like a background element, even if you see it, you have to find a certain walk-through wall in order to reach it.
    • The cheat to unlock all 75 Kremcoins is so obtuse it wasn't discovered until several years after the fact. Somewhat justified in that it seems to be a leftover debug tool.
    • The hero coin in Kannon's Klaim, which is hidden not in the main level, but a bonus level (and is the only coin hidden like this).
  • Gusty Glade: In addition to the Trope Namer itself, there's the vertical-based Windy Well (which arguably also counts as Gravity Screw) and Animal Antics, which mixes this with Squawks and brambles. Also K. Rool's Keep.
  • Hailfire Peaks: Krem Cauldron, a mix of Crocodile Cauldron and Krem Quay, from Donkey Kong Land 2.
  • Haunted House: Haunted Hall is a coaster level that takes place in a haunted library.
  • The Hedge of Thorns: The Bramble levels: Bramble Blast, Bramble Scramble, and Screech's Sprint.
  • Hints Are for Losers: The manual has a section called "Cranky's Hints." There, Cranky just berates you for being so naive and tell you to buy the upcoming Nintendo Power guide instead. It also didn't help that the credits show that the manual was made by Nintendo Power as well.
  • Hornet Hole: Krazy Kremland has a stage that is the Trope Namer.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • You ultimately beat K. Rool by clogging his gun with his own cannonballs. This can happen to you immediately afterwards, too, since the ensuing explosions launch said cannonballs back at you.
    • Krow is first beaten by the very eggs he tries to throw at you.
  • Interface Screw: One of the ghost types Kaptain K. Rool fires from his blunderbuss reverses the controls if touched. Other weapons will freeze the Kongs, and a third type puts the Kongs into slow motion.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Klubba will be mean and threatening towards you, but if you manage to pay his toll, he will suddenly change his tune and be really nice to you.
  • Jungle Japes: Though no world proper, Jungle Jinx and Klobber Karnage from the Lost World are these. Some parts of Animal Antics have this, as well.
  • Lava is Boiling Kool-Aid: The red hot water in Lava Lagoon, which you must cool before taking a swim.
  • Left Stuck After Attack: Kutlass will sometimes get his cutlasses stuck in the ground after attacking, giving you a brief period of time in which he can be Goomba Stomped. Green Kutlasses recover almost immediately, though.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Crocodile Cauldron.
  • Lighter and Softer: The port for Game Boy Advance used brighter colors and more cartoonish qualities. The ending was also slightly altered. In the original version, K. Rool falls from his ship after defeat and gets eaten by sharks, but in the GameBoy Advance port, he falls into the Lost World and vows for revenge, which hints at getting the Golden Ending. The Golden Ending is changed, too. In the original version, K. Rool rides away in Evil Laughter as Crocodile Isle collapses, whereas in the GameBoy Advance port, additional dialogue was added and Funky drops a bomb on K. Rool.
  • The Lost Woods: Gloomy Gulch.
  • Megaton Punch: After Donkey Kong breaks free of his restraints, he delivers the final blow as K. Rool is knocked through the roof of his airship and falls into shark-infested waters.
  • Mini-Game: Swanky's Bonus Bonanza, where successfully beating quiz games can gain you lives.
  • Minecart Madness: Carnival versions in Target Terror and Rickety Race and a haunted version in Haunted Hall.
  • Mook Maker: Kloak is a temporary example, who sometimes throws Spinies.
  • Musical Nod: "Snakey Chantey", heard in Rattle Battle (and the SNES version of Glimmer's Galleon), starts out with a re-orchestrated portion of "Gang-Plank Galleon" from the first game.
  • Never Say "Die": Klubba says, "Try that again an' it's Davey Jones Locker f' ye! A-harrh!" if you choose to fight him at any Klubba's Kiosk.
  • Nintendo Hard: Often considered the hardest of the trilogy, which says a lot. Even the commercial boasts, "it's even tougher than the original one."
  • Obvious Beta: Not a huge example, but you can tell very easily that the hitboxes and physics are off in the GBA version compared to the original, such as stars in Collect the Stars bonuses being easier to get (not so bad) and some cannons in Bramble Scramble not firing you where they're supposed to (a little more overt, but still not as bad as it could have been).
  • Oh, Crap!: Diddy and Dixie's reaction to the appearance of bosses is having their eyes cartoonishly bug out of their head. Donkey Kong does it too during the final battle when K. Rool appears defeated only to get back up. (At least the first two times...)
  • Off-Model: The DK Coins. They look fine at a glance, but if you pay attention, you'll notice that you never see them from the back. While this works for the completely solid Kremkoins, the DK Coin's build (The letters "DK" in a hollow ring) make this stick out once you notice it. Notably, this was corrected in DKC3, where it actually does do a complete rotation and lets you see the back of it.
  • One-Hit Point Wonder: A notable example happens with the rematch with Kaptain K. Rool, who is defeated with only one cannonball into his blunderbuss, but has a very long sequence of attacks before you can finally attack.
  • Pirate Pegleg: Klomps hobble around on one. There's also Kaboings, who jump around on a pair of pogo-stick peg legs.
  • Proj-egg-tile: Krow's main form of attack (and also the Kongs' main form of counterattack, since they can pick up his eggs and throw them back). In his rematch as a ghost, he still launches eggs, although from offscreen this time. This is also how Squawks attacks.
  • Promoted to Playable: There are now sections where the various Animal Buddies outright replace the Kongs as player characters, as opposed to being Power Up Mounts (or, in Squawks's case, not even that).
  • Pun-Based Title: Diddy's Kong Quest — i.e. "conquest."
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Klubba is only threatening until you pay his toll, and then he's polite as can be. He will also comment that he hopes you take down K. Rool because he doesn't treat his crew well.
  • Rise to the Challenge: Slime Climb and Toxic Tower.
  • The Ruins I Caused: The 102% ending shows Diddy, DK, and Dixie watching Crocodile Isle sink into the ocean as K.Rool escapes with an Evil Laugh.
  • Rule of Three: Each level setting is used exactly three times.
  • Save-Game Limits: In the original SNES version only. You can only save in Kong Kolleges, and while the first save in any given location is free, every save in the same location after that costs two coins. In the remake, saving can be done at any time on the map; and in the Wii U and New 3DS Virtual Console releases of the original version, technically any time at all thanks to the restore point feature.
  • Schmuck Bait: At the end of Glimmer's Galleon, there are a few puffer fish enemies, which usually swell up and move around or explode into shrapnel. There is also one that isn't swollen and doesn't seem to react to you, and right above it is a Banana Coin. If you go for the coin, the fish will immediately swell up and float upward, causing you to take a hit.
  • Seadog Peg Leg: The basic Kremling enemies have these, fitting the general pirate motif of the game. Some even have two peg legs, meaning they can only move by leaping.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike: This game is considered to be harder than both its predecessor and its sequel.
  • Shout-Out: On the "Cranky's Video Game Heroes" screen, you can see that Mario, Yoshi, and Link ranked in respectively 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. In the original SNES version, you can also notice Sonic the Hedgehog's shoes and Earthworm Jim's gun, laying next to a trash can labeled as "No Hopers."
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Most official sources (such as the soundtrack album and Super Smash Bros.) name the Brambles music as "Stickerbush Symphony", but the GBA remake's sound test calls it "Stickerbrush Symphony" instead.
  • The Spiny:
    • Literally named "Spiny." Can still be defeated, however, by rolling into them from the front.
    • Kutlasses are also immune to the Goomba Stomp unless they get their swords stuck in the ground.
    • Don't roll into a Klampon. Ever. They will turn around immediately to prevent back attacks, too. Some levels deviously place Klampons (Immune to Frontal Attacks) and Spinies (Immune To Jumps) together in a row, forcing the player to alternate their attacks carefully.
    • Zingers take it up a notch, being unable to be injured by any of the Kongs' usual means of attack, meaning the player has to instead rely on objects like barrels and cannonballs to kill them. Red Zingers are even worse, since they don't even allow that.
  • Stealth Pun: Swanky Kong is an entrepreneur, making any business he starts monkey business.
  • Take That, Audience!: The code to start a new file with 50 lives is Y, A, Select, A, Down, Left, A, Down (YA SAD LAD).
  • "Test Your Strength" Game: The goal posts at the end of each non-boss level are a variation of this. Jumping on the target normally completes the level as usual, but jumping on it from a high-enough height will send the barrel up the pole and win you a prize. The prizes include a single banana, a bunch of bananas, an extra life, the "G" letter of the word "KONG", a banana coin, or a DK coin. The key to getting the prize you want is to jump from the right height at the right time.
  • Timed Mission: The second half of Screech's Sprint, which kills you instantly if you don't make it to the end before Screech.
  • True Final Boss: Krocodile Kore, which is unlocked after completing every level in the Lost World.
  • Underground Level: The various mine levels: Kannon's Klaim, Squawks' Shaft, and Windy Well.
  • Under the Sea: Interestingly, Glimmer's Galleon is probably the closest this game gets to a full example, almost every other water level being a mix of land and water gameplay.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Exactly how did K. Rool manage to come back from being munched on by sharks?
  • Unique Enemy: Quite a few — usually to serve as the particular level's gimmick:
    • The invincible Snapjaw, who serves as the enemy who hurts you if you fall in the water of Slime Climb and Clapper's Cavern.
    • Kackle, who hurts you if you mess up too much in Haunted Hall.
    • Klank, the rollercoaster enemy in the only two coaster levels, Target Terror and Rickety Race.
    • Ghostly Mini-Neckies, found only in the boss fight against Krow's ghost.
    • Faster pink Krushas in Castle Crush and Clapper's Cavern.
    • The extra-life-stealing black Klobbers in Chain Link Chamber and Black Ice Battle.
  • Warp Zone: Every level in the first two worlds has a hidden barrel that warps you to the end of the level, making pretty much the entire first and second worlds skippable.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: When you arrive at Stronghold Showdown, you'd be expecting a grand battle. However, all you see is Donkey Kong tied up, and you'll get a Kremkoin as if you've already won. Donkey Kong is quickly taken away by Kaptain K. Rool and you're forced to go through one more level until you can take on the Kaptain himself. By the way, the free Kremkoin is only for the original SNES version. In the GBA re-release, you will have to defeat Kerozene before earning that Kremkoin.

Cranky Kong: "Now, go ahead and switch that cartridge off, so I could get some sleep! I reckon I've earned it!"

Video Example(s):


Krem Quay

Being a swamp, a fraction of Krem Quay's levels take place in a swamp environment, with dirty swamp pits occupying a fraction of the stages, and a bramble field deep into the world. The main landmark of Krem Quay is a large shipwreck of a ship that originally belonged to King K. Rool. The ship is broken in two halves, and each half appears on either side of the world map. The remaining levels take place on either half of the shipwreck.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

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Media sources:

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