Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze: Everything you need to know!

He's back again, and performing for you — Donkey Kong and his pals are making their debut on the Nintendo Switch with one of the Wii U's coolest titles: Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze. Donkey, Diddy, Dixie, and Cranky are joined by a fifth pal, the ever-suave Funky, as they make their way across their island home to stop a frozen menace from taking over. It's all the same platforming hijinks we loved in the Wii U version, but with a few added features, some extra detail, and a brand new mode to ease in new or younger players.

Already beat the Wii U version? Joining Donkey and pals for the first time? Here's everything you need to know before embarking on this tropical journey.

A frigid tale

donkey kong country tropical freeze

Poor Donkey Kong. He just wanted to celebrate his birthday with his pals when a chill wind blows into DK Isle from across the sea. It's the Snowmads! These icy, viking-like creatures take over DK Isle and turn it into an arctic paradise, kicking Donkey and his buds out in the process. They must make their way back across a chain of islands and stop the Snowmads to regain their home and get a piece of delicious birthday cake.

To do this, Donkey can play solo or with a co-op friend through six different island worlds, each with multiple platforming levels. Alone, Donkey's abilities are sufficient to reconquer his home, but he's better off with a friend in tow. Diddy, Dixie, and Cranky can each join him through a friend in the Player 2 seat, lending their unique skills to access hidden collectibles, secret levels, and more bananas than you can stuff into a banana horde.

More friendly with two

donkey kong country tropical freeze

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is fun on your own, especially now that you can take it outside with you and play it in literal snow or tropical climates if you have them. But it's even better if you bring a friend along. Your co-op pal can play as Diddy, Dixie, or Cranky. To help them make their choice, here's a run-down of each Kong's unique abilities:

  • Diddy Kong sports his iconic jetpack, which helps him float over gaps and stay alive in situations where he otherwise might tumble into a pit and lose a precious balloon life.
  • Dixie Kong 'has a fabulous ponytail that she can spin, gaining a burst of height and a gentle descent. She can lend this help to her friend Donkey, too!
  • Cranky Kong isn't happy about being brought along, but he'll keep up the pace with his trusty cane, which lets him bounce across spikes and other hazards unharmed.

On the Nintendo Switch, co-op mode can be played anywhere. Take your Switch on the go, bust out your Joy-Cons, and each player can use one as a controller. You'll never lack the ability to bring a friend on an island adventure!

We're gonna get Funky!

donkey kong country tropical freeze

The biggest difference between Tropical Freeze on the Wii U and the Switch is the addition of a Funky new easy mode. In this mode, Funky takes Donkey's place, and can surf levels alone or bring along one of the other three Kongs, just as Donkey can. Funky is here to prove he's not just good at selling balloons. He makes the game far more accessible for anyone who just wants a breezy tropical adventure without the headache of death after death.

Funky brings with him a little extra bulk. He has more hearts, and can take more hits before he has to crash. He also has a speedy surfboard he can cruise through levels on, allowing him to bypass many enemies or obstacles that would otherwise halt Donkey and friends in their tracks. Finally, don't forget, he owns the game's store! He still has to keep the books balanced, but with Funky in charge, you can get items at a discount.

I dig it! Is there anything else?

donkey kong country tropical freeze

Sure! Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is more than just a handful of worlds and levels. There are numerous secret levels unlocked by collecting Secret Exits, and if you can finish these and collect all the K O N G letters, you'll unlock a Hard Mode that puts you in the furry feet of any Kong you choose: even sidekicks like Diddy, Dixie, or Cranky! There's also a Time Attack mode with global leaderboards that will let you test your speedy swingin' skills against other players. How fast can you beat a level?

Sounds a-peel-ing. How many bananas will it cost?

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze will cost $59.99 when it launches on May 4, 2018.

I had a brain freeze and I need to know more!

If you have any questions about Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, let me know in the comments! Funky and I have got your back.

Reb Valentine