Donkey Kong Country Returns Wii

User Score
8.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 369 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 19 out of 369
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  1. May 1, 2016
    9
    This game builds up a solid gameplay with solid graphics, bringing back the old days with a solid experience. Donkey Kong Country Returns is worth a play and another one at it.
  2. Aug 2, 2016
    10
    This game is super fun and a great welcoming back to the game series we MUST love. If anyone hates this game you probably don't know what a great game is.
  3. Nov 19, 2011
    9
    Donkey Kong Country Returns is the first OFFICIAL Donkey Kong game based on the main franchise since DK64 from early 2000s. The game goes back to its original 2D roots from the SNES era, this time bringing back the original duo Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong. Fans will reminiscence throughout the game as they go through similar stages, hear familiar music, and see many familiar and old enemiesDonkey Kong Country Returns is the first OFFICIAL Donkey Kong game based on the main franchise since DK64 from early 2000s. The game goes back to its original 2D roots from the SNES era, this time bringing back the original duo Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong. Fans will reminiscence throughout the game as they go through similar stages, hear familiar music, and see many familiar and old enemies from the past game as they travel through this nostaglic game. Many of the theme songs are remix versions of several tracks from several games and players will enjoy listening to the incredible orchestrated music to the lush environment that they are thrown into playing. Storyline wise, its not as top as the old games however the same formula is there, DK lost his banana horde and needs to get back it from the enemies. Although one thing that some fans might not like is the sheer difficulty of the game that will come mid way through the game and the apparent lack of Kremlings. Expand
  4. Feb 17, 2016
    9
    Donkey Kong Country Returns is one of those classic 2D platformer so dear to Nintendo with an emblematic character of the brand, then of course you'll expect a very good platformer, now lets talk about why the game isn't a disappointment at all.

    First technically the game looks good for the Wii, it's not gorgeous but will definitely not hurt your eyes. Solid framerate and 0 bug during
    Donkey Kong Country Returns is one of those classic 2D platformer so dear to Nintendo with an emblematic character of the brand, then of course you'll expect a very good platformer, now lets talk about why the game isn't a disappointment at all.

    First technically the game looks good for the Wii, it's not gorgeous but will definitely not hurt your eyes. Solid framerate and 0 bug during all the playthrough, precise hit-box for all the characters, responsive controls, etc. The game is perfect on this ground.

    Now about the gameplay it's basically genuine for the 2D platformer genre, with very few new ideas, but the formula didn't need to change so I'll not consider this as a con for the game, there is a good curve of difficulty in the game between the super easy first world to the hardcore last world where the game is almost a Die & Retry, specially the levels on rails or rocket. Concerning the wiimote controls there is a slight problem here, all the skills are based on the same movement and a particular tilt of the joystick in the nunchuck and therefore many times I died rolling over a platform when I only wanted to breeze the flower at the edge, this could have been change during testing. But globally the game is very fun with some challenge that will frustrate you just enough to give you a good feeling of accomplishment.

    Like all good platformers the game is full of collectible and bonus stages and if you look for everything the game should last about 20 hours, which is very good, unfortunately I will have the same criticism that I have for almost all Nintendo games, where is the story ? The little there is could have been written by a 6 year old, in my opinion they should really change that and give more importance to the characters and purpose, even more when the universe of the game is very rich like in Donkey Kong.

    All in all Donkey Kong Country Returns is a great 2D platformer with a handful of content, challenging levels, good bosses, fun gameplay (with one minor default on the mapping of the controls) that I'll definitively advice to old-school players looking for a retro platformer, but not to story oriented players.
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  5. Apr 9, 2012
    9
    A high quality platformer, Donkey Kong Country Returns is a must-have for fans of the genre. It is not a perfect game, but it is a very good one. It is also the most difficult full-retail 2D platformer to come out since the 16 bit era, so if you don't LIKE hard games, you really won't like this game past the first few worlds - the difficulty increases significantly.

    The game's graphics
    A high quality platformer, Donkey Kong Country Returns is a must-have for fans of the genre. It is not a perfect game, but it is a very good one. It is also the most difficult full-retail 2D platformer to come out since the 16 bit era, so if you don't LIKE hard games, you really won't like this game past the first few worlds - the difficulty increases significantly.

    The game's graphics are very pretty and it makes excellent use of color; the game feels very vibrant and the levels have flavorful and attractive graphical design. The enemies too look cool and you are never left feeling confused - the enemies' appearances are very intuitive.

    In addition to the standard rolling that is present in all Donkey Kong Country games, as well as the ground pound move from the very first Donkey Kong Country game, this game also incorporates a new blowing mechanic; while ostensibly very similar to pounding the ground, it allows for a few interesting interactions with the environment as well as a few enemies who are on fire who you can blow out in order to attack (or even to kill them outright in the case of a few enemies). Unlike previous Donkey Kong Country games, in DKCR you are always DK and you have two hit points, with Diddy coming out of barrels to give you another 2 hit points and cling to your back, giving you a rocket boost hover and allowing you to move around stages more quickly while rolling.

    As with all DKC games there are two kinds of collectables; in this game, there are puzzle pieces and KONG letters, and unlike in previous games the KONG letters are for unlocking stages rather than mere extra lives.

    The game has a time trial mode built into it as well, so if you enjoy that sort of thing it is available, and if you don't, you don't miss out on any content for ignoring the mode.

    It does have its flaws, however:

    1) In time trial mode, when you die before the first checkpoint, rather than resetting the level automatically it restarts you at the start of the level with elapsed time on the clock. This is pointless and stupid, as you might as well restart the level at 0:00 at that point - and you do. Repeatedly.

    2) Using the waggle to roll and pound is annoying. You get used to it after a while, but every once in a while the controls will kill you and it will annoy you considerably.

    3) A few of the levels have frustrating elements in their level design which create "fake difficulty". A good example is the final boss; there is a long rocket section prior to the final boss, but once you reach him, if you die, you do not have Diddy Kong, your fathful sidekick (and two extra hit points, and hover jumps). You want him again? You have to replay the rocket level (which is tedious). You can beat him without Diddy, but it is unnecessarily made harder to do.

    4) There are still lives in this game, but they are incredibly pointless. You can easily max out your lives, and you can buy more lives if you really feel like you need to. Oftentimes, dying before some areas will actually increase your stock count due to collecting extra life balloons plus bananas, making gaining infinite lives trivial. Like New Super Mario Bros. Wii, there is absolutely no reason for lives to still be in the game.
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  6. Jul 5, 2013
    8
    Definitely one of, if not the best 2D platformer on the Wii. The levels are creative, the visuals stunning, and the soundtrack classic donkey kong. This is a truly great game, however it has one issue. Motion control. In order to roll, you have to waggle the Wii-mote. While this sounds like a minor issue, it's actually quite a problem. The levels are very difficult (which is great. I loveDefinitely one of, if not the best 2D platformer on the Wii. The levels are creative, the visuals stunning, and the soundtrack classic donkey kong. This is a truly great game, however it has one issue. Motion control. In order to roll, you have to waggle the Wii-mote. While this sounds like a minor issue, it's actually quite a problem. The levels are very difficult (which is great. I love challenge) and the motion control just makes them ridiculous some times. Really that's the only thing holding this game back. It is definitely worth your time, though. Expand
  7. Sep 30, 2012
    9
    Retro Studios has proven its mettle in making good games, such as Metroid Prime. This game, however, is their greatest achievement. Reviving the classic Donkey Kong Country games was probably no easy task, but they pulled it off spectacularly. Not only does it look and sound great, it retains the challenge too (I'm looking at you, minecart levels).
  8. Jan 9, 2011
    10
    Other companies can keep making fancy 3D shoot-em-ups all they want. I will stick to the great 2D versions of Nintendo's best. And Donkey Kong Country Returns uses the best technology has to offer and keeps is 2D-real! The levels are fast, funny and goofy. Just pure Donkey Kong fun! Could it have been made to accommodate a 360-degree world, sure, but why? The characters moveOther companies can keep making fancy 3D shoot-em-ups all they want. I will stick to the great 2D versions of Nintendo's best. And Donkey Kong Country Returns uses the best technology has to offer and keeps is 2D-real! The levels are fast, funny and goofy. Just pure Donkey Kong fun! Could it have been made to accommodate a 360-degree world, sure, but why? The characters move fluidly, the levels are accomplish able without being too simple and it's not so frustrating that you just want to turn it off and stop playing. If you have any childhood memory of lifelong of Donkey's world, this game is not to be missed! Expand
  9. Oct 23, 2013
    8
    I find it stupid for someone to give this game a negative score just because it's hard, that's what makes a game fun. It's been so long since a Donkey Kong Country game came out and boy did they do a good job the only thing i'm wondering is where are the kremlins.
  10. Jun 11, 2014
    9
    I remember the day this game was first announced, a little before around that time I was just already getting into the Donkey Kong Country series and around that time of hearing all about when Rare left Nintendo back in 2002, it made me really sad because It made me think that there almost was no hope for the return of Donkey Kong, especially after also hearing how disappointed fans wereI remember the day this game was first announced, a little before around that time I was just already getting into the Donkey Kong Country series and around that time of hearing all about when Rare left Nintendo back in 2002, it made me really sad because It made me think that there almost was no hope for the return of Donkey Kong, especially after also hearing how disappointed fans were when they played Jungle Beat on the GameCube and how much that game didn't give tribute to DKC; so I lost hope, I thought to myself "Man, they will never make a new game following the old Donkey Kong Country formula again." So when I saw Nintendo post the first trailer for Donkey Kong Country Returns, I freaked out! I got so excited, and when I got it I definitely enjoyed it.

    Pros:
    -Excellent gameplay and controls!
    -Wonderful atmospheres.
    -Nostalgic Music at it's finest.
    -Rambi is a fun to play.
    -Cool bosses.
    -Fun secrets to discover.
    -Cranky's shop is cool with neat items and Cranky being "cranky" as usual.
    -Nice long adventure that never feels boring after a while.

    Cons:
    -Can get very difficult after a while to where a lot of deaths would occur.
    -No underwater levels.
    -I would've liked to have seen more Animal Buddies and Kong members.
    -The Rocket Barrel levels had some frustrating controls.
    -The Tiki enemies felt very lacking in characteristics.

    So I do think that DKCR is a great game, but nothing that I am super enthusiastic about. When I get myself a Wii U, I really hope to get myself Tropical Freeze soon after.
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  11. Apr 12, 2015
    8
    This is a great game! The DK country series is back! The graphics are great for Wii. The controls are good. The level designs are awesome. This game also has a Mario Kart track based on it called DK Jungle. DKC Returns is a great game and you should definitely buy it.
  12. Dec 3, 2015
    9
    This is truly an amazing and at times for challenging 2D platform and if you have a Wii or plan on getting one, this is a game you need to own. It's a lot of fun and definitely worth playing, every island is more beautiful than the last and defeating the final boss feels great, also when you beat the game there's more challenges to do afterwards which can be frustrating but you feel likeThis is truly an amazing and at times for challenging 2D platform and if you have a Wii or plan on getting one, this is a game you need to own. It's a lot of fun and definitely worth playing, every island is more beautiful than the last and defeating the final boss feels great, also when you beat the game there's more challenges to do afterwards which can be frustrating but you feel like you accomplished something when you beat them. Expand
  13. Jun 1, 2012
    9
    What sets me apart from the general crowd of brainless retards on metacritic is the fact that my reviews are actually subjective ratings of games relative to each other. And even to this standard, DKCR is one of the best games. On Wii, it is the second best game, after Mario Galaxy. Why is it great? Similarly to the genius SNES series, every platforming level feels like a brand newWhat sets me apart from the general crowd of brainless retards on metacritic is the fact that my reviews are actually subjective ratings of games relative to each other. And even to this standard, DKCR is one of the best games. On Wii, it is the second best game, after Mario Galaxy. Why is it great? Similarly to the genius SNES series, every platforming level feels like a brand new experience. The level ideas are immensely ambitious and creative. The gameplay is as good as the original, including the legendary "roll jump". The controls aren't perfect, the motion controls are a poor idea for this game, I don't want to shake my wii to roll. There is no option to change the controls either. This was a rather stupid idea. But that is probably the only downside to this brilliant game, after its HUGE number of levels, speed runs, bonuses, unlockable secret worlds and the like I hadn't been bored once. The difficulty - it's equally hard to the original donkey kongs, although the fact that you have virtually infinite lives is strange. The speed runs are EXTREMELY challenging, only a few elite players will get the shiny gold medal, which are impossible for a casual gamer to get even after days of play. So, enjoy, this game has 95% positive reviews for a reason. Expand
  14. Aug 26, 2013
    9
    The donkey kong series has been revived in the best possible way. The latest installment borrows ideas from other 2D platformers, but makes them all its own through unique twists and punishing difficulty.
    It's pure platforming bliss, and will especially impress hardcore gamers. The wii's motion sensing is put to subtle use- mainly for hammering the ground, one of Donkey Kong's many
    The donkey kong series has been revived in the best possible way. The latest installment borrows ideas from other 2D platformers, but makes them all its own through unique twists and punishing difficulty.
    It's pure platforming bliss, and will especially impress hardcore gamers. The wii's motion sensing is put to subtle use- mainly for hammering the ground, one of Donkey Kong's many actions. There are eight worlds to explore, each with their own nine or so levels. There's a jungle world, a cave, and more. These may not seem original, but the many original mechanics, objects and bossses you come across certainly are. The settings are brought to life by lush graphics full-of-life scenery, charming music and great sound effects. Enemies are creatively designed and levels are expertly crafted. The difficulty is especially high, and will even challenge hardcore players. Seriously, Country Returns has a brutal difficulty level that will delight fans of the series. Many a time I got a game over, but it's never unfair- every time you die, it's due to your own mistakes rather than dodgy level design.
    One of my favourite elements of Country Returns is the barrel blasting. This mehanic has you time your exit out of a barrel/cannon thing. It propels you quite some distance. It's all about the timing to blast out of the cannons and land safely in the next one. This idea is used a lot in Country Returns.
    The bosses are excellent too, and they take many hits to kill. The bosses are all very challenging, even the very first one, because the more you hit them, the harder they get. Of course, this isn't a new concept to videogames. But Country Returns uses it a huge amount in boss battles, which makes them very hard and satisfying.
    Hidden in each level are various collectibles- four KONG letters and seven to nine puzzle pieces are to be found in each level. They are so difficult to get, even the best of the best will be challenged by these. Often these collectibkes introduce an element of puzzle into the platforming.
    There's also a addition called Rambi- a bit like Yoshi, except he's a rhinoceros. It's fun using him, but he only actually appears in three or four levels, which is slightly strange.
    Other than that, Country Returns is perfect in every way.
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  15. Nov 25, 2010
    8
    For the most part, Retro's take on Donkey Kong is a joy to play. Any fans of the original SNES titles will be able to jump in from the get-go. The game looks and feels like its classic predecessors and serves as a reminder of how classic game design is timeless. Unfortunately, there are some instances when the motion controls feel a little forced. This affects the experience, but in no wayFor the most part, Retro's take on Donkey Kong is a joy to play. Any fans of the original SNES titles will be able to jump in from the get-go. The game looks and feels like its classic predecessors and serves as a reminder of how classic game design is timeless. Unfortunately, there are some instances when the motion controls feel a little forced. This affects the experience, but in no way renders DKCR unplayable. Expand
  16. Jul 1, 2014
    8
    I felt the difficulty was a bit much with it getting genuinely frustrating at times and all the jigsaw collecting felt a little like a chore but other than that this is a great game that every Wii owner ought to have tried. Great visuals, gameplay very true to the originals and plenty of content as well as a cool soundtrack and co-op mode make it highly recommended.
  17. Dec 8, 2015
    9
    I played Tropical Freeze before Returns, but I found that Returns is just a charming and innovative. The level design is fantastic and the environments are just as lively as they are in the sequel. Retro really did a great job breathing new life into this franchise. Donkey Kong Country Returns is one of the Wii's best games and I definitely recommend it for both casual and veteran platformer fans.
  18. Jan 1, 2012
    8
    Great to see a return to form for gaming's best ape. The motion controls can be slightly problematic and the co-op can be a bit of a pain if you're playing with someone of different abilities to you. The game itself is extremely good in single player. This is how 2d platforming should be and in my opinion this is a lot better than NSMBW.
  19. Dec 15, 2011
    9
    Donkey Kong Country Returns is the best revival title of the Donkey Kong franchise since the DKC trilogy on the SNES. Retro Studios has done an incredible job taking the same kind of game platforming that Rare developed in the original DKC, but added some new and original twists within the gameplay. The game is visually stunning, the controls are responsively good (for the most part), andDonkey Kong Country Returns is the best revival title of the Donkey Kong franchise since the DKC trilogy on the SNES. Retro Studios has done an incredible job taking the same kind of game platforming that Rare developed in the original DKC, but added some new and original twists within the gameplay. The game is visually stunning, the controls are responsively good (for the most part), and there are many side scrolling levels to play through that has a great challenge to each one of them. This almost beats the original DKC, but there are tiny little things that doesn't make the game as superior as Rare's DKC, i.e. Switching DK or Diddy in one player. For gamers who wants a challenging game for their Nintendo Wii's, then DKC Returns is the game for you. Hopefully it doesn't make you go completely bananas for its difficulty. Expand
  20. Dec 25, 2011
    10
    This is a one of a kind return that is a must buy for Wii. Visually stunning and beautiful. Game mechanics are in sync with the player. The difficulty is unmatched on the Wii. There are levels where heading in with multiple lives will prevent you from seeing the dreaded game over screen more times than you would like.
  21. Sep 27, 2015
    9
    When it comes to the difficulty of the top platformers for the Wii, I'd say Epic Yarn is the easiest, Mario is medium, and this is the hardest. It's a fun game with lots of fresh gimmicks and variety, and the story cutscenes are cute. DK at his best.
  22. Jan 8, 2011
    9
    I loved the original Donkey Kong Country series of games. Donkey Kong Country is the first video game I ever played, and this was in 2003. Don't **** You know it's awesome. Donkey Kong Country Returns is everything I loved about the original trilogy, fixing up its errors and pushing it much further. It has the original Jungle levels, mine carts, barrels, Rambi, hidden bonus levels and theI loved the original Donkey Kong Country series of games. Donkey Kong Country is the first video game I ever played, and this was in 2003. Don't **** You know it's awesome. Donkey Kong Country Returns is everything I loved about the original trilogy, fixing up its errors and pushing it much further. It has the original Jungle levels, mine carts, barrels, Rambi, hidden bonus levels and the classic music which has luckily not been messed around with and there's more than that. However, it pushes the game even further like one level where you have to take cover behind rocks and shipwrecks to avoid a big tidal wave crashing through, there's two (ore more) levels which take place in jazzy silhouette mode, which is utterly gorgeous, there's a few levels where you have to complete the level in a jet powered barrel and you can blast into the background in this game, adding to the variety in this game. The game is as hard as hell but very rewarding. The graphics are some of the best in gaming history. Just amazing. Of course, nobody's perfect. The enemies In DKCR are not as cool as the kremlings but are still cool. There are no water levels in this game, which I dearly miss. Normally water levels are absolutely hairy bollocks and I hate them, but DCKR is one of those sole game where they're actually good. Lastly, the controls are still a waggle-fest. To roll, you waggle. To blow out fire, you waggle. To ground pound, you waggle, which you will be doing a lot of. Also, there are lag in the controls and Donkey Kong sometimes doesn't jump when you want him to, or sometime he won't jump at all. Apart from those niggles, you will love this game. If you're heavily nostalgic or just want a platforming game, this won't let you down. Oh, and here's a 9. Expand
  23. Feb 12, 2012
    8
    DK Returns?...Not a bad game at all. I'm about 3/4 through this game and it is pretty difficult. My favorite DK game ever is DK on the SNES the original but this has updated graphics, fantastic visuals, great game play mechanics, and fun levels. I recommend this game for anybody who is looking for a challenge.â
  24. Sep 11, 2013
    9
    To be honest, I thought that Nintendo just forgot about the Donkey Kong Country series, but when Donkey Kong Country Returns came out this is the first DK Country game not to be made with Rare but with Retro Studios. I wish Rare would come back to Nintendo to make good games again like they did before. Score: 4/5.
  25. Jul 15, 2011
    10
    Donkey Kong Country Returns is an absolute perfect game. The controls work great, the graphics are top-notch, the levels are beautifully designed, the support characters are fun to use, the levels are very hard, there are a lot of levels, there is tons of replayability, and the game is fun as hell! everything about the game is perfect. I honestly can't tell you how much you are missing outDonkey Kong Country Returns is an absolute perfect game. The controls work great, the graphics are top-notch, the levels are beautifully designed, the support characters are fun to use, the levels are very hard, there are a lot of levels, there is tons of replayability, and the game is fun as hell! everything about the game is perfect. I honestly can't tell you how much you are missing out on. Seriously. Get this game. Expand
  26. Jul 26, 2013
    9
    This game is gorgeous, by Wii standards among the best-looking on the platform. The soundtrack is magnificent. The level design is tremendous. The variety is outstanding. The game is enormous fun. So Why won't I give it a 10? The difficulty. The absurdly punishing difficulty. This game is very, very HARD. You will die over and over again. Only determined players will finish the entireThis game is gorgeous, by Wii standards among the best-looking on the platform. The soundtrack is magnificent. The level design is tremendous. The variety is outstanding. The game is enormous fun. So Why won't I give it a 10? The difficulty. The absurdly punishing difficulty. This game is very, very HARD. You will die over and over again. Only determined players will finish the entire game, and completionists will also be sadomasochists as this game will KILL YOU. Yes, the Super Guide is present to help get you through extremely tough levels, but where's the fun in that? Expand
  27. Nov 21, 2010
    10
    Retro Studios did a great job, they knew what fan wanted. The game is simply fantastic. Taking back 2d style is just beautiful, easy to control, the music make you feel the pleasure of the other DKC game. A new coop mode to play with your friend, lot of level to complete many thing to collect many hour of fun to spend. Perfect.
  28. May 3, 2013
    9
    This game has really good levels, nearly as good as Super Mario 3D Land on the 3DS. I really hate the levels where you get the jet-pack because is steering to really hard to master. Two player mode is really good but but it is hard to get new lives.
  29. Nov 22, 2010
    10
    Retro Studios has delivered an awesome title with DKCR. The level of polish is outstanding. This game is fun and challenging. It is worth buying a Wii for. I simply love it and I can't find any flaws. Fans of this series: It's On Like Donkey Kong AGAIN!!
  30. Jan 19, 2011
    9
    It is a very fun game. It is a very difficult game. I don't think there is any way I am going to complete this game 100%. There are a few levels in which I think I lost like 40 or 50 lives trying to beat a level. It requires some patience but the reward is satisfying. Not as good as the first installments on Super, but it comes very close. A very similar game to New Super Mario Bros.It is a very fun game. It is a very difficult game. I don't think there is any way I am going to complete this game 100%. There are a few levels in which I think I lost like 40 or 50 lives trying to beat a level. It requires some patience but the reward is satisfying. Not as good as the first installments on Super, but it comes very close. A very similar game to New Super Mario Bros. for Wii. Solid. Expand

Awards & Rankings

#4 Most Discussed Wii Game of 2010
#5 Most Shared Wii Game of 2010
Metascore
87

Generally favorable reviews - based on 77 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 73 out of 77
  2. Negative: 0 out of 77
  1. Mar 17, 2011
    90
    It looks and sounds wonderful, it feels great when you play it, it's tons of fun and full of surprises.
  2. Feb 25, 2011
    90
    Fans of classic 2D games, or the original DKC games, owe it to themselves to pick up this amazing return to the franchise. The difficulty is the one area that may throw some gamers for a loop, but with the ability to let the game play itself it becomes a non-issue.
  3. Feb 16, 2011
    84
    In the end Donkey Kong Country Returns is, in my opinion, a long awaited return to a franchise that needed updating. Fear not, DK fans, this title is for you.