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TEST: Donkey Kong Tropical Country Freeze will give Banana to your Switch

The famous monkey of Nintendo, Donkey Kong, is back on Nintendo Switch, in a game of platforms among the most beautiful of the console … But close to the Wii-U version.

Exclusively on Nintendo Switch . Released four years ago on the Nintendo Wii-U console,  Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze  is back with some new features. Yes, but … Is it enough to justify going back to the cash register?

Indeed, besides the fact that you can now play anywhere with your tablet, a new mode is added to the adventure: Funky Kong mode.

To the four basic characters (Dixie, Donkey, Diddy and Cranky), this mode adds a fifth playable character. Funky Kong leaves his store to go on an adventure, with his surfboard and his sunglasses.

This mode is easier (to be reserved for beginners, therefore), with a hero who jumps higher, can breathe under water, can hover with his board … And resists peaks.

The party is ruined!

The game, developed by Retro Studios on behalf of Nintendo, takes us to the island of Kong. All are gathered to celebrate the birthday of Donkey Kong, around a cake (banana, of course).

But the party is quickly ruined by the arrival of Frigoths, animals-Vikings from the cold. Their leader sets off a storm that covers the tropical island with a large white coat.

It does not take Donkey Kong and his friends any more to embark on a great journey around the island, to knock the invaders out of the island. And warm up the atmosphere.

The player therefore embarks on a platform game divided into six worlds made up of many levels (some of which are hidden).

A lesson in “game-design”

Donkey Kong Country tropical freeze screenshot
The aquatic environments are beautiful. (© Nintendo)

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze  is beautifully done, and the first thing that will jump you in the eyes, are its beautiful graphics that flatter the retina: tropical island, azure lagoon, mangrove filled with sharks and other hostile creatures … The player remains admiring in front of such panoramas.

The game runs smoothly, without bug … And this despite a slight difference between the display on the tablet (720p) and on the TV screen (1080p). The game is among the most beautiful games of the console.

The soundtrack is not left behind, with its jazz music, composed by David Wise, who was already the superb compositions of the very first Donkey Kong Country , in 1994 on Super-Nintendo.

A game to do with family

In terms of playability, the title once again plays first in the class, with maneuverability that responds to quarter-turn. Orders are accessible instantly.

We can only blame him for some peaks of difficulty, in some levels more devious. These will ask you good reflexes, and act quickly! At the risk of quickly understanding the meaning of ”  die and retry  ” (dies and retries).

Fortunately, the developers have planned a multiplayer mode. And if the difficulty is felt, dad or mom can seize the second joycon (the controller of the Switch) to come in support.

Designed for a wide audience, Donkey Kong Tropical Country Freeze offers levels designed to please the greatest number. Exploration fans can take their time to find 100% of hidden objects. While “speedrunners” (those who try to finish the levels as quickly as possible) will find an architecture allowing speeding.


Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze Screenshot
Scour the levels to find all the secrets. (© Nintendo)

Should we fall for this Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze? The answer is obviously “yes” if you do not know the adventure, if you are a fan of Donkey Kong, or if you are looking for a good platform game on Switch. The game is one of the most beautiful of the console, and probably one of the richest, behind Super Mario Odyssey .

Read also:  Test video games. Ultra-Sun and Ultra-Moon Pokemon: an ultra-captivating adventure on 3DS

On the other hand, the reflection is necessary if you already know the version Wii-U, released four years ago. The game is almost the same. The only difference being the “Funky Kong” mode (which facilitates the adventure). As well as the fact that the game becomes nomadic thanks to the screen of the Switch.

An excellent game full of surprises if you discover it … An excellent game without real big news if you already know it! 

We liked :

  • Graphically pretty
  • Funky-Kong mode that makes it easy to spot
  • The music
  • Long life

We did not like :

  • Some difficult passages
  • Boss fights without much madness
  • Almost the same game as on Wii-U

Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze, by Retro Studios for Nintendo , exclusive to Switch. From 3 years old . Price: € 59.99.

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