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Classic Games (Games) Nintendo Games

30th Anniversary of Donkey Kong 47

An anonymous reader writes "30 years ago this month, Nintendo released Donkey Kong — an iconic arcade machine that put the company on the video game map and introduced Mario. Technologizer's Benj Edwards celebrated the anniversary by rounding up some of the game's odder sidelights. For instance, it was originally going to be a game about Popeye, Bluto, and Olive Oyl — and among its stranger offshoots was a pocket-sized game in which Donkey Kong and Mario faced off in hockey." Gamasutra has a more detailed article about the game's development.
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30th Anniversary of Donkey Kong

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  • ...a barrel full of monkeys. Congrats, Nintendo!
  • Videos (part 1 [], part 2 []).

    Made by Build Your Own Arcade Controls Forum member Bender.

  • I was just explaining to my young kids how I played this growing up. The kept asking me why I only got to play as Mario when the game was called Donkey Kong. It reminded me of Patrick Stewart explaining that he thought "Star Trek" was the name of the ship when he auditioned for ST:TNG.

    • At my college we had a Crazy Kong [] machine in 1982. It was another year before I saw a "real" Donkey Kong, and I thought the real one was the knock-off because of the gaudier (to me) color scheme. According to the Wikipedia article it was licensed outside the U.S., but this was definitely in the U.S. As I recall Atari games were still much bigger than Donkey Kong, at least with my age group. The big hits were Tempest [] and Centipede [].
  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Monday July 11, 2011 @04:35PM (#36726182)

    Damned ape took more lives than a serial killer at a hitchhiker convention.

  • I think Slashdot should jsut be banned from posting links to Technologizer.
    I generally don't complain about article formats, but this is the worst I've ever seen. The article is 15 pages long, with 2 paragraphs of text on each page, and a picture of Donkey Kong that is bigger than the article text. At first, I couldn't even find the article because the page layout is so dumb I had to scroll to the right to see it.

  • No thanks. Made it all the way to page 2.

    • by msobkow ( 48369 )

      Install AdBlock Plus and quit whining about ads. You only put up with ads 'cause you choose to.

      • Install AdBlock Plus and quit whining about ads. You only put up with ads 'cause you choose to.

        You are part of the problem. Just because you don't see the ads doesn't mean their resources are not loaded. Lots of trickery goes into making sure the site doesn't ban you for blocking the ads (not that I agree with either practice).

        The solution is to simply not view those heavily ad-laden pages with articles designed to increase ad impression counts. Vote with your feet (or hits), else you are perpetuating the problem, not solving it. (Wouldn't you like to not have to use an ad blocker?)


        • Install AdBlock Plus and quit whining about ads. You only put up with ads 'cause you choose to.

          You are part of the problem. Just because you don't see the ads doesn't mean their resources are not loaded.

          If you use ABP, that's exactly what it means.

  • Anyone know? Do I have buy a Wii or something?
  • ...and it's still on like Donkey Kong.

    • I highly recommend The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters. []

      This is a must-see. Everyone in this film is fascinating. Billy Mitchell and Brian Kuh are hilarious!

    • Its also viewable on [] - definitely check it out - its awesome. I think Billy Mitchell rates as one of the worlds all time greatest douches and Steve Wiebe is one of the best underdogs of all time. You just can't help but root for the guy all the way throug the the film. Its great. Beware though it is a descent into the pure geekiness of reto competitieve gaming and the twin galaxies universe - shouldn't be a problem to the average slashdotter though i guess :) Read

  • by Red_Chaos1 ( 95148 ) on Monday July 11, 2011 @05:30PM (#36726848)

    "For instance, it was originally going to be a game about Popeye, Bluto, and Olive Oyl."

    Actually, Nintendo *did* make a Popeye video game: [] It was both in the Arcade and on the NES.

  • Horsecrap (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Osgeld ( 1900440 )

    The man who made up zelda based on childhood memories of exploring the countryside sure as hell did not base donkey kong on an American cartoon, go on youtube search for "history of video games" there is a g-4 show where he shows the original storyboards, including killing kong at the end.

    • Re:Horsecrap (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 11, 2011 @05:56PM (#36727084)

      Iwata Asks: New Super Mario Bros Wii []:

      Iwata: Yes, the company was releasing Popeye playing cards and Popeye Game & Watch titles.

      Miyamoto: That's why at first I asked if I could make a game using Popeye. The basic concept of Popeye is that there is the hero and his rival who he manages to turn the tables on with the aid of spinach.

      Iwata: When you put it like that, it's the same as Pac-Man, isn't it? (laughs)

      Miyamoto: Yes, it's identical to Pac-Man! (laughs) So I sketched out a few ideas for games using Popeye. At that point, Yokoi-san was good enough to bring these ideas to the President's attention and in the end one of the ideas received official approval. Yokoi-san thought that designers would become necessary members of development teams in order to make games in the future. And that's how Donkey Kong came about.

      Straight from the mouth of "the man who made up zelda based on childhood memories" ;)

  • Doo, doo, doo dee dee doo, doo, doo dee dee doo, doo...
    You hear that Mr. Mario? That is the sound of inevitability... It is the sound of your death...

  • The movie, if you have not seen it, is a complete waste of time. The game though, it still rules.
  • So, was the name Donkey Kong a classic translation error or not?
    • From Wikipedia:

      Yamauchi wanted to primarily target the North American market, so he mandated that the game be given an English title. Miyamoto decided to name the game for the ape, whom he felt to be the strongest character The story of how Miyamoto came up with the name "Donkey Kong" varies. A popular urban myth says that the name was originally meant to be "Monkey Kong", but was misspelled or misinterpreted due to a blurred fax or bad telephone connection. Another story claims Miyamoto looked in a Japanese-English dictionary for something that would mean "stubborn gorilla," or that "Donkey" was meant to convey "silly" or "stubborn"; "Kong" was common Japanese slang for "gorilla". A rival claim is that he worked with Nintendo's export manager to come up with the title, and that "Donkey" was meant to represent "stupid and goofy".

      So the answer is... maybe?

  • Really?? One whole web page full of advertisements, and 2 paragraphs of actual content? And there's 15 total pages?

    Closed tab at page 2.

    But hey, Happy Birthday Donkey Kong!

  • by pgn674 ( 995941 ) on Monday July 11, 2011 @11:13PM (#36729556) Homepage
    They missed one of the more interesting facts. One that I didn't know about until I played on an original Donkey Kong arcade that had been embedded into a table [] in a burrito restaurant in Orono, Maine, and read the instructions []. The character's original name was Jumpman.
  • There was also the Super Game Boy game, that wasn't much like the original but it was fucking awesome. It's on the 3DS's virtual console if it's too hard to find a cartridge.

  • I've still got my copy of Donkey Kong from 1983 in cassette form for my Acorn Electron (BBC Micro clone) buried in my parents attic, wonder if it still works?

I've noticed several design suggestions in your code.