Does Sakurai dislike/not care about the Donkey Kong franchise?

Mccdbz5

Smash Journeyman
Premium
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
367
Location
Atlanta, Georgia
#1
To preface what I'm about to say, this isn't coming from a place of hate, but more of frustration. And this is just my personal opinion. Not saying this is by any means how he actually feels. What I feel is just based on my observations over time.

So now that that's out of the way, I wanted to pose the question; does Sakurai dislike/not care for the Donkey Kong franchise? I feel compelled to ask this question to get other perspectives, as I'm interested to see if others have ever felt this way. I'm a huge fan of the Donkey Kong Country franchise. It's my favorite video game franchise along with Super Smash Bros., so I'm obviously biased to the series. But with that said, my reasons for feeling this way are mostly attributed to the amount of content that has been included in each entry of the series. Donkey Kong has never gotten much representation. If you look at each game, the amount of content Donkey Kong has gotten pales in comparison to other franchises with similar popularity, if you look at things such as playable characters, stages, assist trophies, items, etc. I don't really count the content included from the original Donkey Kong arcade game, as I find that to be more of a Mario game than anything, as that game is not associated with the Country franchise, so I'll be leaving that content out (and even with that content, there still isn't much).

Melee - One playable character, three stages (two new, one from 64), one item.

Brawl - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from Melee), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Smash 4 Wii U - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from 64), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Ultimate - Three playable characters, three stages (none new), one assist trophy, zero items.

This is just a basic breakdown I made to better illustrate the lack of content Donkey Kong has had over the years. Donkey Kong is Nintendo's fourth best selling franchise (not including the Wii Fit series) behind Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda. When you look at the content Donkey Kong has received compared to these franchises, it doesn't even compare. Not to mention that smaller franchises such as Fire Emblem and Kid Icarus seem to get much more representation. The thing I find even more egregious about this is that even if you look at Ultimate with King K. Rool's inclusion, let's be honest; he was only added due to his immense popularity from the ballot. If not for the ballot, I don't think he would've been added even still, which means we still wouldn't have gotten any new Donkey Kong characters, even though Dixie Kong could've easily been added because of her inclusion in Tropical Freeze. And there are many other examples of lack of content outside of what I've listed (for example, only two music tracks from Tropical Freeze, both of which were already included in Smash 4). I say all this to say that I truly feel Sakurai either dislikes or has very little interest in the franchise, and it's frustrating as a fan. It's frustrating that such a big franchise is treated like such an irrelevant one. It's frustrating that with every entry in the series, we're expecting a new Fire Emblem character, but we're never realistically expecting a Donkey Kong character when one franchise is oversaturated and the other is almost entirely neglected. It's frustrating knowing that a very deserving character had to wait five games to get in and needed to help of a poll just to even be considered in the first place. Hell, I even thought it was crazy that it took Diddy Kong until Brawl to get in, as I felt he should've been a character in Melee, or at least should've at least been considered, which to my knowledge, he was never considered to be a character in Melee. And even in Brawl, I think it was originally planned that him and Dixie Kong would be a team character like Ice Climbers, as if Diddy Kong wasn't important enough to be a stand alone character.

To be clear, this isn't me calling for a boycott on Fire Emblem characters or anything like that. I just feel that the Donkey Kong franchise doesn't get the representation it deserves. It's just the lack of characters, the lack of stages and variety in them (every Donkey Kong stage is just a jungle...), etc. It even took until Ultimate for music tracks other than Jungle Hijinx being remixed like seven times to be included. It's just severely disappointing for me because I feel like there's so much great material they could take from the Country franchise, as it's a franchise that has so much to offer. I don't know if it's because the Country franchise is more popular in the West and has always been developed by foreign studios, and so maybe there's a lack of interest or familiarity there. Who knows. But any who, I didn't write this to rant or make anyone upset. I just wanted to open up the conversation, as I feel like it's an interesting one to have, given Donkey Kong's popularity compared to the amount of content included in the series.
 
Last edited:

Opossum

Thread Title Changer
GRimer
Joined
Aug 10, 2011
Messages
28,724
Location
This Thread
3DS FC
4742-4911-3431
NNID
OpossumGuy
Switch FC
SW 2859 6322 5208
#2
To preface what I'm about to say, this isn't coming from a place of hate, but more of frustration. And this is just my personal opinion. Not saying this is by any means how he actually feels. What I feel is just based on my observations over time.

So now that that's out of the way, I wanted to pose the question; does Sakurai dislike/not care for the Donkey Kong franchise? I feel compelled to ask this question to get other perspectives, as I'm interested to see if others have ever felt this way. I'm a huge fan of the Donkey Kong Country franchise. It's my favorite video game franchise along with Super Smash Bros., so I'm obviously biased to the series. But with that said, my reasons for feeling this way are mostly attributed to the amount of content that has been included in each entry of the series. Donkey Kong has never gotten much representation. If you look at each game, the amount of content Donkey Kong has gotten pales in comparison to other franchises with similar popularity, if you look at things such as playable characters, stages, assist trophies, items, etc. I don't really count the content included from the original Donkey Kong arcade game, as I find that to be more of a Mario game than anything, as that game is not associated with the Country franchise, so I'll be leaving that content out (and even with that content, there still isn't much).

Melee - One playable character, three stages (two new, one from 64), one item.

Brawl - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from Melee), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Smash 4 Wii U - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from 64), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Ultimate - Three playable characters, three stages (none new), one assist trophy, zero items.

This is just a basic breakdown I made to better illustrate the lack of content Donkey Kong has had over the years. Donkey Kong is Nintendo's fourth best selling franchise (not including the Wii Fit series) behind Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda. When you look at the content Donkey Kong has received compared to these franchises, it doesn't even compare. Not to mention that smaller franchises such as Fire Emblem and Kid Icarus seem to get much more representation. The thing I find even more egregious about this is that even if you look at Ultimate with King K. Rool's inclusion, let's be honest; he was only added due to his immense popularity from the ballot. If not for the ballot, I don't think he would've been added even still, which means we still wouldn't have gotten any new Donkey Kong characters, even though Dixie Kong could've easily been added because of her inclusion in Tropical Freeze. And there are many other examples of lack of content outside of what I've listed (for example, only two music tracks from Tropical Freeze, both of which were already included in Smash 4). I say all this to say that I truly feel Sakurai either dislikes or has very little interest in the franchise, and it's frustrating as a fan. It's frustrating that such a big franchise is treated like such an irrelevant one. It's frustrating that with every entry in the series, we're expecting a new Fire Emblem character, but we're never realistically expecting a Donkey Kong character when one franchise is oversaturated and the other is almost entirely neglected. It's frustrating knowing that a very deserving character had to wait five games to get in and needed to help of a poll just to even be considered in the first place. Hell, I even thought it was crazy that it took Diddy Kong until Brawl to get in, as I felt he should've been a character in Melee, or at least should've at least been considered, which to my knowledge, he was never considered to be a character in Melee. And even in Brawl, I think it was originally planned that him and Dixie Kong would be a team character like Ice Climbers, as if Diddy Kong wasn't important enough to be a stand alone character.

To be clear, this isn't me calling for a boycott on Fire Emblem characters or anything like that. I just feel that the Donkey Kong franchise doesn't get the representation it deserves. It's just the lack of characters, the lack of stages and variety in them (every Donkey Kong stage is just a jungle...), etc. It even took until Ultimate for music tracks other than Jungle Hijinx being remixed like seven times to be included. It's just severely disappointing for me because I feel like there's so much great material they could take from the Country franchise, as it's a franchise that has so much to offer. I don't know if it's because the Country franchise is more popular in the West and has always been developed by foreign studios, and so maybe there's a lack of interest or familiarity there. Who knows. But any who, I didn't write this to rant or make anyone upset. I just wanted to open up the conversation, as I feel like it's an interesting one to have, given Donkey Kong's popularity compared to the amount of content included in the series.
I see why you'd be frustrated, but I felt I'd offer my perspective.

First off, I'll also be ignoring the DK Arcade stuff for this, mainly because I see it as its own thing, personally. A common point of origin for both Mario and DK, which divided into Super Mario and Donkey Kong Country later on. So basically we'll ignore the Spring, 75m, and the Hammer (especially since the Hammer was always more of Mario's thing anyway).

I think the main thing that made DKC get delayed representation was the Rare debacle. There was likely some stuff going on behind the scenes that may have, theoretically, prevented Diddy from being added to Melee during the planning stages (or at least, that's my theory). Of note, in Melee, most franchises only had one character. Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda were the only ones with more than one unique character, and Star Fox and Fire Emblem only got their second characters due to being last minute clones of Fox and Marth. From this perspective, I think Melee did okay by DK when it came to series representation, keeping the Rare situation in mind.

Brawl, I think, actually gave it quite a bit of love. Diddy finally got in, and even ignoring 75m, it got a new stage with Rumble Falls. DK and Diddy also got to play big parts in the SSE, and going by the Forbidden Seven, Dixie was likely considered as well at some point, attached to Diddy or otherwise. The one big glaring omission in Brawl, to me, was the lack of an Assist Trophy, which we'll come back to later.

Smash 4, I think, was the biggest DKC misstep, though. It got, for the Wii U, Jungle Hijinxs, and tons of remixes...of the same song. On 3DS, it only got a ported Melee stage. Despite being a platformer rife with enemy variety, DKC only had two Kritters who were basically color swaps, and a floating Tiki Buzz. Most egregiously, it still didn't have an Assist.

Part of it may have been due to the slump in DKC content pre-Returns...but Returns came out well before the project plan finished. DKC was in its revival. The lack of Tropical Freeze content can be justified as poor timing, as the project plan was completed before its release, and it wasn't really a timely thing for DLC brand synergy. Honestly, the lack of a newcomer likely stemmed from the fact that only DK, Diddy, and Cranky were brought back in Returns. But still, only one new stage, the lack of an Assist, and small amount of Smash Run enemies definitely sticks out.

With Ultimate, K. Rool got in due to fan demand, of course, and I think the series was given a lot of love, all things considered. The lack of a new stage is much more justified by the fact that there are over one hundred stages, mostly from past games. The only new stages were for new-to-Smash series like Splatoon and Castlevania, or from major Switch releases with portable assets, like Breath of the Wild and Odyssey. DKC got a lot more songs this time, had an entire themed sub area in World of Light, and finally got an Assist with Klaptrap, which was admittedly LONG overdue (Rambi when?), in addition to the corpulent croc himself, who even has a fully remodeled Blast-o-Matic.

Smash 4 was the one game where I feel that the dearth of DKC content can't be as easily explained, but I definitely don't think it was out of apathy. Perhaps it was just out-prioritized. We know things like Alph being his own character, a Dr. Mario stage, and very likely the Chorus Kids were left on the cutting room floor, after all. There could've always been a lot more we didn't know about.

But honestly, even franchises you pointed out as getting favorable treatment as of late are fairly easy to explain. Kid Icarus, for example, just had Uprising completed before Smash 4 started development. As such, Sakurai had a ton of assets left over that could be used for Smash Run enemies, as well as Reset Bomb Forest. Dark Pit was a right place, right time situation like Lucina and Doc, while Palutena was an incredibly highly requested fighter back in the pre-Smash 4, post-Uprising days. It also had a lot of potential for item reuse. Uprising really was a case of fortunate timing, but even then, most of Kid Icarus's extra content in Smash 4 was only on the 3DS. The lack of Smash Run and a lot of high quality trophy models made the Kid Icarus content for Wii U much more scarce, and now in Ultimate it actually has significantly LESS content. No new remixes, no new fighters, Magnus is no longer an Assist, no new stage, no Smash Run.

And honestly, characters are pretty much the only things Fire Emblem gets a lot of. It didn't get a character until Melee since Marth was dropped from 64, didn't get a stage until Brawl, and only has three stages across the series, which is less than even EarthBound. And not only that, only Arena Ferox is based on an actual location from the games, with Castle Siege not being from any game in particular and Coliseum being an abstract representation of Arenas in general (and the localization even got the stage name wrong...). Awakening also got no new remixes in Smash 4 despite most of the new content coming from there. Despite the wealth of potential items Fire Emblem has, it took until the Killing Edge in Ultimate for it to get any at all. And in Brawl and 4, despite the hundreds of potential options, Lyn remained the only Assist. Thankfully, this at least has been rectified with the additions of Tiki and Black Knight, plus we got some nice remixes this time. No themed area in World of Light though, sadly. And even with the character count, there are only four and a half unique characters, plus two echo fighters who take considerably less development time.



Most of the time, it just comes down to circumstance when it comes to which franchises get what content in whichever game. I don't think it has anything to do with preference or ill will, necessarily, though I do admit 4 had a bit less DKC representation than I'd have hoped. But with Ultimate, I'm definitely more content with its content.

Just my perspective, anyway.
 
Last edited:

Ryu Myuutsu

Smash Champion
Joined
Mar 24, 2013
Messages
2,141
Location
Niigata, Japan
3DS FC
3668-9945-1996
NNID
BahamurShin
#3
Not to mention that smaller franchises such as Fire Emblem and Kid Icarus seem to get much more representation.
One thing; Fire Emblem is no longer a small franchise. At least Nintendo doesn't consider it small anymore. It doesn't matter if DK Country moved units over 20 years, we are looking at the present now. And to Nintendo, Fire Emblem has become a big selling franchise.
 

Zeke The Zekenator

Something something Stratospheric Thunder
Premium
Joined
Dec 19, 2018
Messages
1,912
#4
To preface what I'm about to say, this isn't coming from a place of hate, but more of frustration. And this is just my personal opinion. Not saying this is by any means how he actually feels. What I feel is just based on my observations over time.

So now that that's out of the way, I wanted to pose the question; does Sakurai dislike/not care for the Donkey Kong franchise? I feel compelled to ask this question to get other perspectives, as I'm interested to see if others have ever felt this way. I'm a huge fan of the Donkey Kong Country franchise. It's my favorite video game franchise along with Super Smash Bros., so I'm obviously biased to the series. But with that said, my reasons for feeling this way are mostly attributed to the amount of content that has been included in each entry of the series. Donkey Kong has never gotten much representation. If you look at each game, the amount of content Donkey Kong has gotten pales in comparison to other franchises with similar popularity, if you look at things such as playable characters, stages, assist trophies, items, etc. I don't really count the content included from the original Donkey Kong arcade game, as I find that to be more of a Mario game than anything, as that game is not associated with the Country franchise, so I'll be leaving that content out (and even with that content, there still isn't much).

Melee - One playable character, three stages (two new, one from 64), one item.

Brawl - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from Melee), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Smash 4 Wii U - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from 64), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Ultimate - Three playable characters, three stages (none new), one assist trophy, zero items.

This is just a basic breakdown I made to better illustrate the lack of content Donkey Kong has had over the years. Donkey Kong is Nintendo's fourth best selling franchise (not including the Wii Fit series) behind Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda. When you look at the content Donkey Kong has received compared to these franchises, it doesn't even compare. Not to mention that smaller franchises such as Fire Emblem and Kid Icarus seem to get much more representation. The thing I find even more egregious about this is that even if you look at Ultimate with King K. Rool's inclusion, let's be honest; he was only added due to his immense popularity from the ballot. If not for the ballot, I don't think he would've been added even still, which means we still wouldn't have gotten any new Donkey Kong characters, even though Dixie Kong could've easily been added because of her inclusion in Tropical Freeze. And there are many other examples of lack of content outside of what I've listed (for example, only two music tracks from Tropical Freeze, both of which were already included in Smash 4). I say all this to say that I truly feel Sakurai either dislikes or has very little interest in the franchise, and it's frustrating as a fan. It's frustrating that such a big franchise is treated like such an irrelevant one. It's frustrating that with every entry in the series, we're expecting a new Fire Emblem character, but we're never realistically expecting a Donkey Kong character when one franchise is oversaturated and the other is almost entirely neglected. It's frustrating knowing that a very deserving character had to wait five games to get in and needed to help of a poll just to even be considered in the first place. Hell, I even thought it was crazy that it took Diddy Kong until Brawl to get in, as I felt he should've been a character in Melee, or at least should've at least been considered, which to my knowledge, he was never considered to be a character in Melee. And even in Brawl, I think it was originally planned that him and Dixie Kong would be a team character like Ice Climbers, as if Diddy Kong wasn't important enough to be a stand alone character.

To be clear, this isn't me calling for a boycott on Fire Emblem characters or anything like that. I just feel that the Donkey Kong franchise doesn't get the representation it deserves. It's just the lack of characters, the lack of stages and variety in them (every Donkey Kong stage is just a jungle...), etc. It even took until Ultimate for music tracks other than Jungle Hijinx being remixed like seven times to be included. It's just severely disappointing for me because I feel like there's so much great material they could take from the Country franchise, as it's a franchise that has so much to offer. I don't know if it's because the Country franchise is more popular in the West and has always been developed by foreign studios, and so maybe there's a lack of interest or familiarity there. Who knows. But any who, I didn't write this to rant or make anyone upset. I just wanted to open up the conversation, as I feel like it's an interesting one to have, given Donkey Kong's popularity compared to the amount of content included in the series.
I have a question for you, what would you like represented from the DK series in regards of items, stages, characters, AT? (Omitting music due to having a lot of good choices)

I think that is something that could help your argument, especially since representation from all the franchises is all over the place.
 
Joined
Aug 27, 2018
Messages
976
Location
Into Sandy's City
#7
You could say that he has something against the Donkey Kong franchise, seeing as even to this very day, none of the Donkey Kong characters sound like their canon selves.
Most of the characters are not like their canonical versions so that's a moot point.

Also I believe Wario has it way worse than DK does.

Honestly has a huge fan of Dkc I'm pretty content with the represention, the only things I wish was some more Tropical Freeze music and Dixie as a unique or semi clone (not an echo) then I think it would be perfect for me at least.
 
Last edited:

Wyoming

Connery, Sean
Writing Team
Joined
Jun 27, 2013
Messages
2,896
Switch FC
7748-5364-3982
#8
One thing; Fire Emblem is no longer a small franchise. At least Nintendo doesn't consider it small anymore. It doesn't matter if DK Country moved units over 20 years, we are looking at the present now. And to Nintendo, Fire Emblem has become a big selling franchise.
Donkey Kong sells more than Fire Emblem to this day.
 

KatKit

Smash Ace
Joined
May 7, 2014
Messages
633
#9
There could be more representation, sure... but I think the DK series still gets love.

For instance, in Smash 4, the DK stage was the first updated N64 level; that's quite the honor. As for the other stage, Jungle Hijinks is currently the only level in Smash history that allows players to fight in the foreground and background with its "two planes" mechanic.

Although there aren't any new DK stages in Ultimate, they added more songs/remixes than most series. Again, there could be more, but Donkey Kong isn't lacking in the new songs department this time around. And aside from finally getting its antagonist as a playable rep (who had A LOT of care put into both his reveal trailer and moveset), I think its World of Light area and Funky Kong shop were nice treats (and don't get me started on how cool DK's classic mode was with Diddy tagging along for the journey after sparring in the first level).

There's more, but you get the point; the love for DK seems to get bigger with each installment. Unlike, say... Pikmin lol.
 
Last edited:

Xelrog

Smash Journeyman
Joined
Feb 24, 2019
Messages
488
Location
Battle Ground, WA
Switch FC
SW 2367 4933 3404
#10
The DK series doesn't have a lot of relevant characters. Cranky only recently got a playable appearance, Dixie has had maybe two, Funky had one, and... that's all. The early games in the series shot themselves in the foot by replacing most of the cast every single game.

Other Nintendo characters make it in the game because other Nintendo characters are more relevant not only to Nintendo, but to their own series. The number of games Dedede and Meta Knight have been in by now is... probably close to a dozen?
 

Wyoming

Connery, Sean
Writing Team
Joined
Jun 27, 2013
Messages
2,896
Switch FC
7748-5364-3982
#12
The DK series doesn't have a lot of relevant characters. Cranky only recently got a playable appearance, Dixie has had maybe two, Funky had one, and... that's all. The early games in the series shot themselves in the foot by replacing most of the cast every single game.

Other Nintendo characters make it in the game because other Nintendo characters are more relevant not only to Nintendo, but to their own series. The number of games Dedede and Meta Knight have been in by now is... probably close to a dozen?
Dixie is part of a beloved pair of games of the past and has been playable in Tropical Freeze, both Mario Baseball games, Barrel Blast, Diddy Kong Racing's remake, Donkey Konga (once or twice?), and Mario Hoops since the change of the millennium alone from the top of my head.

As for Funky, he was playable and well-known in Mario Kart Wii - a game that sold what, 40m?
 
Last edited:

Xelrog

Smash Journeyman
Joined
Feb 24, 2019
Messages
488
Location
Battle Ground, WA
Switch FC
SW 2367 4933 3404
#13
I'm just saying there are far more relevant Nintendo characters yet to make it than grasping at straws for more representation of a series that already has three characters and several levels in the game.
 

Wunderwaft

Smash Journeyman
Joined
Mar 21, 2019
Messages
344
#14
To preface what I'm about to say, this isn't coming from a place of hate, but more of frustration. And this is just my personal opinion. Not saying this is by any means how he actually feels. What I feel is just based on my observations over time.

So now that that's out of the way, I wanted to pose the question; does Sakurai dislike/not care for the Donkey Kong franchise? I feel compelled to ask this question to get other perspectives, as I'm interested to see if others have ever felt this way. I'm a huge fan of the Donkey Kong Country franchise. It's my favorite video game franchise along with Super Smash Bros., so I'm obviously biased to the series. But with that said, my reasons for feeling this way are mostly attributed to the amount of content that has been included in each entry of the series. Donkey Kong has never gotten much representation. If you look at each game, the amount of content Donkey Kong has gotten pales in comparison to other franchises with similar popularity, if you look at things such as playable characters, stages, assist trophies, items, etc. I don't really count the content included from the original Donkey Kong arcade game, as I find that to be more of a Mario game than anything, as that game is not associated with the Country franchise, so I'll be leaving that content out (and even with that content, there still isn't much).

Melee - One playable character, three stages (two new, one from 64), one item.

Brawl - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from Melee), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Smash 4 Wii U - Two playable characters, two stages (one new, one from 64), zero assist trophies, zero items.

Ultimate - Three playable characters, three stages (none new), one assist trophy, zero items.

This is just a basic breakdown I made to better illustrate the lack of content Donkey Kong has had over the years. Donkey Kong is Nintendo's fourth best selling franchise (not including the Wii Fit series) behind Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda. When you look at the content Donkey Kong has received compared to these franchises, it doesn't even compare. Not to mention that smaller franchises such as Fire Emblem and Kid Icarus seem to get much more representation. The thing I find even more egregious about this is that even if you look at Ultimate with King K. Rool's inclusion, let's be honest; he was only added due to his immense popularity from the ballot. If not for the ballot, I don't think he would've been added even still, which means we still wouldn't have gotten any new Donkey Kong characters, even though Dixie Kong could've easily been added because of her inclusion in Tropical Freeze. And there are many other examples of lack of content outside of what I've listed (for example, only two music tracks from Tropical Freeze, both of which were already included in Smash 4). I say all this to say that I truly feel Sakurai either dislikes or has very little interest in the franchise, and it's frustrating as a fan. It's frustrating that such a big franchise is treated like such an irrelevant one. It's frustrating that with every entry in the series, we're expecting a new Fire Emblem character, but we're never realistically expecting a Donkey Kong character when one franchise is oversaturated and the other is almost entirely neglected. It's frustrating knowing that a very deserving character had to wait five games to get in and needed to help of a poll just to even be considered in the first place. Hell, I even thought it was crazy that it took Diddy Kong until Brawl to get in, as I felt he should've been a character in Melee, or at least should've at least been considered, which to my knowledge, he was never considered to be a character in Melee. And even in Brawl, I think it was originally planned that him and Dixie Kong would be a team character like Ice Climbers, as if Diddy Kong wasn't important enough to be a stand alone character.

To be clear, this isn't me calling for a boycott on Fire Emblem characters or anything like that. I just feel that the Donkey Kong franchise doesn't get the representation it deserves. It's just the lack of characters, the lack of stages and variety in them (every Donkey Kong stage is just a jungle...), etc. It even took until Ultimate for music tracks other than Jungle Hijinx being remixed like seven times to be included. It's just severely disappointing for me because I feel like there's so much great material they could take from the Country franchise, as it's a franchise that has so much to offer. I don't know if it's because the Country franchise is more popular in the West and has always been developed by foreign studios, and so maybe there's a lack of interest or familiarity there. Who knows. But any who, I didn't write this to rant or make anyone upset. I just wanted to open up the conversation, as I feel like it's an interesting one to have, given Donkey Kong's popularity compared to the amount of content included in the series.
I get what you mean, but Ultimate gave a lot of love to the DK series that was long overdue. They added K. Rool, remixed a lot of songs, added a lot of spirits, had a small section in World of Light dedicated to the DK series, and they even finally added an assist trophy for the series. The lack of a new stage is because almost every past stage was bought back. We didn't get a lot of new stages because of this, the number of new stages is 4 and they're from Super Mario Odyssey, Zelda Breath of the Wild, Splatoon, and Castlevania, and these four stages are more needed than a DK stage imo. The only time I felt like DK was ignored and not treated right was in 4, but I feel like Ultimate fixed all of that and treated the series right once more.
 

Mccdbz5

Smash Journeyman
Premium
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
367
Location
Atlanta, Georgia
#15
I think the main thing that made DKC get delayed representation was the Rare debacle. There was likely some stuff going on behind the scenes that may have, theoretically, prevented Diddy from being added to Melee during the planning stages (or at least, that's my theory). Of note, in Melee, most franchises only had one character. Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda were the only ones with more than one unique character, and Star Fox and Fire Emblem only got their second characters due to being last minute clones of Fox and Marth. From this perspective, I think Melee did okay by DK when it came to series representation, keeping the Rare situation in mind.
That's definitely a possibility. My thought behind this was that I felt it was odd that Diddy Kong wasn't even considered in the first place, which I believe the Rare fallout didn't happen until 2001, which was the year Melee came out, so they would've already had their characters planned. I always heard that characters like Wario and King Dedede were planned, but not Diddy Kong. Although, it is curious that Diddy Kong doesn't have a trophy in Melee.

Brawl, I think, actually gave it quite a bit of love. Diddy finally got in, and even ignoring 75m, it got a new stage with Rumble Falls. DK and Diddy also got to play big parts in the SSE, and going by the Forbidden Seven, Dixie was likely considered as well at some point, attached to Diddy or otherwise. The one big glaring omission in Brawl, to me, was the lack of an Assist Trophy, which we'll come back to later.
This I respectfully disagree with. In Brawl, just about every existing franchise got a new stage. Most of the top franchises like Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda, all got multiple new stages. And Donkey Kong was barely involved in Subspace. He got turned into a trophy after his first level. Besides Diddy Kong being added, who was such a popular and obvious choice as a newcomer, there wasn't much else.

Smash 4, I think, was the biggest DKC misstep, though. It got, for the Wii U, Jungle Hijinxs, and tons of remixes...of the same song. On 3DS, it only got a ported Melee stage. Despite being a platformer rife with enemy variety, DKC only had two Kritters who were basically color swaps, and a floating Tiki Buzz. Most egregiously, it still didn't have an Assist.

Part of it may have been due to the slump in DKC content pre-Returns...but Returns came out well before the project plan finished. DKC was in its revival. The lack of Tropical Freeze content can be justified as poor timing, as the project plan was completed before its release, and it wasn't really a timely thing for DLC brand synergy. Honestly, the lack of a newcomer likely stemmed from the fact that only DK, Diddy, and Cranky were brought back in Returns. But still, only one new stage, the lack of an Assist, and small amount of Smash Run enemies definitely sticks out.

With Ultimate, K. Rool got in due to fan demand, of course, and I think the series was given a lot of love, all things considered. The lack of a new stage is much more justified by the fact that there are over one hundred stages, mostly from past games. The only new stages were for new-to-Smash series like Splatoon and Castlevania, or from major Switch releases with portable assets, like Breath of the Wild and Odyssey. DKC got a lot more songs this time, had an entire themed sub area in World of Light, and finally got an Assist with Klaptrap, which was admittedly LONG overdue (Rambi when?), in addition to the corpulent croc himself, who even has a fully remodeled Blast-o-Matic.
I absolutely agree that Smash 4 was the biggest misstep. There was so much content they could've taken from Returns alone, and all they did was make a stage based off the very first level, coupled with more Jungle Hijinx remixes than you could ever want...but see, that's why Ultimate even slightly bothers me. Because Tropical Freeze had been released before the project plan for Ultimate began. They could've easily added Dixie Kong and it would make total sense, being that she just appeared in a recent title. But they didn't. We got King K. Rool (who I'm incredibly grateful for, as he's been my most wanted newcomer since Diddy Kong was added), who only got in due to immense popularity from the Smash ballot. So when you think about it, if not for the ballot, we would still have gotten no DK newcomers. I suppose that's not 100% a fact, but I just can't see them adding King K. Rool after all this time without the ballot.

Smash 4 was the one game where I feel that the dearth of DKC content can't be as easily explained, but I definitely don't think it was out of apathy. Perhaps it was just out-prioritized. We know things like Alph being his own character, a Dr. Mario stage, and very likely the Chorus Kids were left on the cutting room floor, after all. There could've always been a lot more we didn't know about.

But honestly, even franchises you pointed out as getting favorable treatment as of late are fairly easy to explain. Kid Icarus, for example, just had Uprising completed before Smash 4 started development. As such, Sakurai had a ton of assets left over that could be used for Smash Run enemies, as well as Reset Bomb Forest. Dark Pit was a right place, right time situation like Lucina and Doc, while Palutena was an incredibly highly requested fighter back in the pre-Smash 4, post-Uprising days. It also had a lot of potential for item reuse. Uprising really was a case of fortunate timing, but even then, most of Kid Icarus's extra content in Smash 4 was only on the 3DS. The lack of Smash Run and a lot of high quality trophy models made the Kid Icarus content for Wii U much more scarce, and now in Ultimate it actually has significantly LESS content. No new remixes, no new fighters, Magnus is no longer an Assist, no new stage, no Smash Run.

And honestly, characters are pretty much the only things Fire Emblem gets a lot of. It didn't get a character until Melee since Marth was dropped from 64, didn't get a stage until Brawl, and only has three stages across the series, which is less than even EarthBound. And not only that, only Arena Ferox is based on an actual location from the games, with Castle Siege not being from any game in particular and Coliseum being an abstract representation of Arenas in general (and the localization even got the stage name wrong...). Awakening also got no new remixes in Smash 4 despite most of the new content coming from there. Despite the wealth of potential items Fire Emblem has, it took until the Killing Edge in Ultimate for it to get any at all. And in Brawl and 4, despite the hundreds of potential options, Lyn remained the only Assist. Thankfully, this at least has been rectified with the additions of Tiki and Black Knight, plus we got some nice remixes this time. No themed area in World of Light though, sadly. And even with the character count, there are only four and a half unique characters, plus two echo fighters who take considerably less development time.



Most of the time, it just comes down to circumstance when it comes to which franchises get what content in whichever game. I don't think it has anything to do with preference or ill will, necessarily, though I do admit 4 had a bit less DKC representation than I'd have hoped. But with Ultimate, I'm definitely more content with its content.

Just my perspective, anyway.
These are all valid points. I get the Kid Icarus and Fire Emblem stuff, which is why I'm not saying they should have less. I just think DK should have more like those franchises. It always really bothered me that both of those franchises surpassed DK in newcomers in Smash 4 when people have been wanting characters like King K. Rool since the days of Melee. But you offer a very good and fair perspective. You would just think at some point, Sakurai would notice that Donkey Kong is a big franchise that has a lot to offer, but has only three characters and has only been delegated to jungle stages.

One thing; Fire Emblem is no longer a small franchise. At least Nintendo doesn't consider it small anymore. It doesn't matter if DK Country moved units over 20 years, we are looking at the present now. And to Nintendo, Fire Emblem has become a big selling franchise.
I understand that. It's still nowhere close to DK, and it's more of a case of Nintendo choosing to produce a ton of Fire Emblem games, and not a lot of main-line series Donkey Kong games (probably because they're much cheaper to develop). The last time a new, unique Donkey Kong title was released on a successful platform, it outsold the entire Metroid Prime trilogy. And let's be honest; Fire Emblem is nowhere near as iconic and recognizable as Donkey Kong is. Most people outside of Nintendo fandom don't even know what Fire Emblem is. Most of my friends are not gamers, and every time we would have people over to hang out and play games like Smash, no one ever knew what Fire Emblem was or who the characters were. Everyone knows what Donkey Kong is and who the characters are. Even King K. Rool, who a lot people on here theorized would not be recognizable to the newer generation, proved that wasn't the case with the ballot and the popularity of the character. I'm not saying Fire Emblem is a small franchise, but if as many main-line series Donkey Kong games were made as Fire Emblem games, I think DK would be far superior in sold units. I believe Tropical Freeze on the Wii U has still sold better than most Fire Emblem games, which I feel only did poorly due to the Wii U. It's done much better on the Switch. I don't know why Nintendo never wants to make DK games. They've always treated the series like the step child they never wanted, and never want to use anything from the Rare days.

I have a question for you, what would you like represented from the DK series in regards of items, stages, characters, AT? (Omitting music due to having a lot of good choices)

I think that is something that could help your argument, especially since representation from all the franchises is all over the place.
I feel like there's so much that can be taken from the series. For characters, I think if Dixie Kong was in you wouldn't necessarily need any other characters, but Funky Kong could be a decent addition as well from his Tropical Freeze iteration (using things like the surf board in his move set). For stages, I've always felt these are the biggest omissions from the series. There's such a variety of environments that they could take from. I was really hoping they cut the Pirate Ship stage from Wind Waker and added Gang-Plank Galleon. But what about a mine-cart level? An ice level from Tropical Freeze? An industrial level from the first game in Kremkroc Industries Inc.? A pirate themed level from DKC 2? There's so much they could do there. For items and assist trophies, how about Rambi as an assist trophy? He seems like an obvious candidate for that to me. Or any of the animal buddies. And for items, they could bring back the arrow barrel from Melee, and they could add things like the crystal coconut, the explosive oranges, the coconut gun, things like that (there's plenty more I have that I can't remember off the top of my head haha).
 
Last edited:

Mushroomguy12

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
108
#16
I just want Dixie and the character representation would be perfect for me. I wouldn't mind a Tropical Freeze stage and a couple more songs from that game, if she was part of a fighter pass, but the character at the bare minimum would satisfy me.

I'm just saying there are far more relevant Nintendo characters yet to make it than grasping at straws for more representation of a series that already has three characters and several levels in the game.
Is there? I know there are a lot of 3rd parties that people want to focus their priorities on, but in terms of 1st party characters, I feel that Dixie is really the only one left that hasn't been deconfirmed as an AT. If Isaac, Waluigi, and Spring Man were still on the table I might agree with you, but aside from Rex (who is even more damaged by having his Mii Costume as part of the DLC rather than in the base game), there's not much competition left (aside from easy echoes like the Octolings). And if Metroid can get four characters I don't know why DK can't get at least one more.

Now if DK had Dixie already and someone was asking for Cranky and Funky on top of that, I could understand saying DK has enough representation at four characters, but most of the relevant characters in other series have already been added at this point, aside from Toad.
 
Last edited:

Mogisthelioma

Smash Champion
Joined
Aug 24, 2018
Messages
2,953
Location
The Lor Starcutter
#17
One thing; Fire Emblem is no longer a small franchise. At least Nintendo doesn't consider it small anymore. It doesn't matter if DK Country moved units over 20 years, we are looking at the present now. And to Nintendo, Fire Emblem has become a big selling franchise.
Smaller by comparison. DK outsells FE by a huge margin.

Mccdbz5 Mccdbz5 I totally understand your frustration. As a Kirby fan I understand how annoying it is to see so many other series get adequate representation but to see one of your own favorites seemingly singled out. Kirby and Donkey Kong are in really similar spots in terms of content in Smash: they both deserve so much more.

I'm not totally sure if Sakurai has a personal disliking or vendetta against DK, but I'm sure there's something in the way. DK himself has a very small resemblance to his canonical form in the DKC games, to begin with.
 

UserKev

Smash Ace
Joined
May 10, 2017
Messages
936
#18
I get what you mean, but Ultimate gave a lot of love to the DK series that was long overdue. They added K. Rool, remixed a lot of songs, added a lot of spirits, had a small section in World of Light dedicated to the DK series, and they even finally added an assist trophy for the series. The lack of a new stage is because almost every past stage was bought back. We didn't get a lot of new stages because of this, the number of new stages is 4 and they're from Super Mario Odyssey, Zelda Breath of the Wild, Splatoon, and Castlevania, and these four stages are more needed than a DK stage imo. The only time I felt like DK was ignored and not treated right was in 4, but I feel like Ultimate fixed all of that and treated the series right once more.
Its not simple while that is a positive way to look at it. Its like saying "DK. We don't want the rest of your friends but you can have stickers of them to take with you." DK should be able to just have more literal representation, which is really a more great and necessary honor.

I mean, why not DK have received 2 new highly requested reps Smash Ultimate's release? If you think about it, DK is being treated shadily.
 

Wyoming

Connery, Sean
Writing Team
Joined
Jun 27, 2013
Messages
2,896
Switch FC
7748-5364-3982
#19
I'm just saying there are far more relevant Nintendo characters yet to make it than grasping at straws for more representation of a series that already has three characters and several levels in the game.
It's all jungle levels. DK has many worlds and landscapes to use besides that. Not to mention most of the music was the same track remixed 40 times before K. Rool joined the fray.

And Donkey Kong is one of their best selling franchises to this day. You don't get more relevant than that.

It may have "numbers", but they are poorly used.
 
Last edited:

Mccdbz5

Smash Journeyman
Premium
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
367
Location
Atlanta, Georgia
#20
There could be more representation, sure... but I think the DK series still gets love.

For instance, in Smash 4, the DK stage was the first updated N64 level; that's quite the honor. As for the other stage, Jungle Hijinks is currently the only level in Smash history that allows players to fight in the foreground and background with its "two planes" mechanic.

Although there aren't any new DK stages in Ultimate, they added more songs/remixes than most series. Again, there could be more, but Donkey Kong isn't lacking in the new songs department this time around. And aside from finally getting its antagonist as a playable rep (who had A LOT of care put into both his reveal trailer and moveset), I think its World of Light area and Funky Kong shop were nice treats (and don't get me started on how cool DK's classic mode was with Diddy tagging along for the journey after sparring in the first level).

There's more, but you get the point; the love for DK seems to get bigger with each installment. Unlike, say... Pikmin lol.
I definitely appreciated Jungle Hijinx in Smash 4. It was nice to see them implement a unique mechanic for a DK stage. And while I loved that stage, I would've preferred that they make a stage based off of something other than a jungle, especially since there's way more in the DKC games than just jungles. And I feel like the music this time around got some pretty good treatment. I feel like it's more a result of adding King K. Rool, as three of the tracks are attributed to him (I include Snakey Chantey since it includes Gang-Plank Galleon). And they did an amazing job with King K. Rool. I absolutely love the treatment they gave him. It's just a shame that it took five games and a ballot for him to finally be included. There's been so much positive reception around him and all the great music tracks that were included, and again, while I appreciate it, I just wish it didn't take so long. But better late than never!

And the World of Light area and Funky Kong shop are awesome. That was certainly a pleasant surprise.

The DK series doesn't have a lot of relevant characters. Cranky only recently got a playable appearance, Dixie has had maybe two, Funky had one, and... that's all. The early games in the series shot themselves in the foot by replacing most of the cast every single game.

Other Nintendo characters make it in the game because other Nintendo characters are more relevant not only to Nintendo, but to their own series. The number of games Dedede and Meta Knight have been in by now is... probably close to a dozen?
Really? Dixie Kong has been playable in a number of games. And even then, there's so many characters in Smash who are never playable or are almost never playable. Rosalina? Bowser Jr.? Piranha Plant? Ganondorf? Wolf? I could go on. I don't think that's a very good way to gauge if a character should be playable or not. There's a reason why Dixie Kong is considered a snub by most people, being that she's one of the only relevant/popular first party Nintendo characters left.

And these characters are still relevant to their franchises. Nintendo just chooses either not to use them or doesn't produce the games. Everyone's been wanting King K. Rool to return to the Donkey Kong Country games.

I get what you mean, but Ultimate gave a lot of love to the DK series that was long overdue. They added K. Rool, remixed a lot of songs, added a lot of spirits, had a small section in World of Light dedicated to the DK series, and they even finally added an assist trophy for the series. The lack of a new stage is because almost every past stage was bought back. We didn't get a lot of new stages because of this, the number of new stages is 4 and they're from Super Mario Odyssey, Zelda Breath of the Wild, Splatoon, and Castlevania, and these four stages are more needed than a DK stage imo. The only time I felt like DK was ignored and not treated right was in 4, but I feel like Ultimate fixed all of that and treated the series right once more.
I definitely appreciate the attention they gave to DK in Ultimate. I'm just looking at it with context. Would King K. Rool have honestly been added if it wasn't for the ballot? I'm assuming not. So that means we potentially could've gone another game with no newcomers. Even then, we finally got ONE assist trophy, still no items, still much fewer songs compared to a lot of franchises (even though it got some great remixes), but come on, they didn't even include any music from Tropical Freeze except for the two tracks that were already in Smash 4! I feel like most of the new music that was added was just due to the inclusion of King K. Rool. All in all, I feel like Ultimate did some good things for the franchise. I just don't think it's a stretch to say that DK of all franchises could get a little more. Even if it's just one stage or a character.

I just want Dixie and the character representation would be perfect for me. I wouldn't mind a Tropical Freeze stage and a couple more songs from that game, if she was part of a fighter pass, but the character at the bare minimum would satisfy me.


Is there? I know there are a lot of 3rd parties that people want to focus their priorities on, but in terms of 1st party characters, I feel that Dixie is really the only one left that hasn't been deconfirmed as an AT. If Isaac, Waluigi, and Spring Man were still on the table I might agree with you, but aside from Rex (who is even more damaged by having his Mii Costume as part of the DLC rather than in the base game), there's not much competition left (aside from easy echoes like the Octolings). And if Metroid can get four characters I don't know why DK can't get at least one more.

Now if DK had Dixie already and someone was asking for Cranky and Funky on top of that, I could understand saying DK has enough representation at four characters, but most of the relevant characters in other series have already been added at this point, aside from Toad.
If Dixie Kong was included, I would certainly feel much different. Again, I just look at the fact that King K. Rool was only added because of the ballot, which if not for that, we still would have no new characters. Which is just insane to me. I would like to see Dixie Kong and at least one stage that isn't a jungle, like Gang-Plank Galleon, a Tropical Freeze stage, something.

Smaller by comparison. DK outsells FE by a huge margin.

Mccdbz5 Mccdbz5 I totally understand your frustration. As a Kirby fan I understand how annoying it is to see so many other series get adequate representation but to see one of your own favorites seemingly singled out. Kirby and Donkey Kong are in really similar spots in terms of content in Smash: they both deserve so much more.

I'm not totally sure if Sakurai has a personal disliking or vendetta against DK, but I'm sure there's something in the way. DK himself has a very small resemblance to his canonical form in the DKC games, to begin with.
I agree. Kirby's always been an odd case to me, as I feel like it gets a decent amount of love through character additions, stages, items, etc., but it's all only content from the old Kirby games that Sakurai was a part of. It's like they pretend that the new Kirby games don't exist. I felt like it was weird when in Smash 4, we got Great Cave Offensive as a stage, instead of choosing something from a new Kirby game.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jul 1, 2018
Messages
629
#21
Interesting thread, I may not be the biggest DK fan out there, though I absolutely love the Retro series with DKCTF being my favorite 2D platformer and being what I consider to be the perfect example of a modern 2D platformer as most just try to emulate the NES. (new Super Mario Bros.) Other than Rayman, DK is really the only one pushing the 2D platforming genre forward in an impactful way.

I want to say that I don't believe Sakurai hates DK, but rather is just neglectful of the series, which I feel is more Nintendo's fault than his. I rember one comment from Sakurai being that he was surprised by the demand for K Rool, and while this may seem odd, you have to remember that K Rool hadn't been in a game for 10 years going into Ultimate, so of course Sakurai would forget.

I feel Sakurai mainly looks at trends in Nintendo for Smash content as he obviously bases many characters and stages on new titles, especially since Brawl. The issue with this for DK is that DK laid dormant for roughly a decade during the 2000s, so there wasn't much to pull from. While it has been said that K Rool and Dixie should have been in Brawl, I think the main issue was that DK was a relatively dead and mismanaged franchise, so Dixie and K Rool's appearances were very scarce around the time of Brawl, either being Mario Sports characters (which means nothing to Sakurai as we've seen from Waluigi) or they appear very rarely to the point where they don't matter anymore. Diddy got in, but that was probably because even in the crazy era, Diddy remained a consistent character, being in all games from Donkey Kong to Mario sports and Kart. I think when it comes to characters, the main issue was DK's inconsistent usage of the cast in the 2000s after Rare's departure, so Sakurai probably didn't want to invest time in characters that didn't even seem important to their own franchise going forwards. (I should also clarify that Wii U had the same problem as they probably only really had Returns to look at, which was a Donkey and Diddy exclusive adventure with not much of a cast. Again, it's hard to pick characters from a franchise that are important when the franchise itself has shifted and neglected many.)

As for assists, they fall into the same boat. What is there to do as DK doesn't have any consistent baddies at the time of Brawl or Smash 4. Saddly, DK isn't Zelda in the fact that 1 offs can make for recognizable assists going forward. (sorry but Dark monkey from Jungle Beat will not be as remembered going into Ultimate, when compared to a character like Midna.)

As for stages all being jungles, this has been explained by me on a Kirby thread. The explanation being that Sakurai chooses first stages and heavily marketed locations due to not wanting any spoilers in Smash. Most stages are based on newer titles, so he wouldn't want Smash to give away the best parts of a game.

Honestly, I think DK is more of a victim of circumstance rather than a Sakurai bias. Had Nintendo's handling of the series been better in the 2000s, I bet that content would be higher for the franchise, but due to much uncertainty and DK's image being reduced to the @$$ of the Mario series, I see why the franchise wasn't a priority to Sakurai at the time.
 

Quillion

Smash Master
Joined
Sep 17, 2014
Messages
3,128
#22
I think some people just need to accept that Donkey Kong is little more than a subset of the Mario franchise at this point. One that has quite a bit of its own identity, but hey, even the Wario series has its own identity, and while Wario is the only necessary Wario character, they ignore anything not from WarioWare. I'd even say Yoshi has its own identity, but no other Yoshi characters are necessary.

This is probably the reason why DK doesn't get much more than DK, Diddy, and Jungle Levels. Haven't you noticed that this is generally what DK also gets in Mario Kart? Jungles, DK, and Diddy are considered the most iconic part of DK's part of the Mario franchise. And that's that; DK is just a part of the Mario franchise, not an entirely different beast that deserves to be extensively represented as Zelda, or even the Game and Watches.

Oh well, I'm still hoping for the third DKCR game where the Kremlings come back. Smash may give K. Rool some love, but he needs to return to his own game.
 

Mccdbz5

Smash Journeyman
Premium
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
367
Location
Atlanta, Georgia
#24
I think some people just need to accept that Donkey Kong is little more than a subset of the Mario franchise at this point. One that has quite a bit of its own identity, but hey, even the Wario series has its own identity, and while Wario is the only necessary Wario character, they ignore anything not from WarioWare. I'd even say Yoshi has its own identity, but no other Yoshi characters are necessary.

This is probably the reason why DK doesn't get much more than DK, Diddy, and Jungle Levels. Haven't you noticed that this is generally what DK also gets in Mario Kart? Jungles, DK, and Diddy are considered the most iconic part of DK's part of the Mario franchise. And that's that; DK is just a part of the Mario franchise, not an entirely different beast that deserves to be extensively represented as Zelda, or even the Game and Watches.

Oh well, I'm still hoping for the third DKCR game where the Kremlings come back. Smash may give K. Rool some love, but he needs to return to his own game.
What are you talking about? Donkey Kong has literally never appeared in a core Mario game other than the original Donkey Kong, if you even consider that a core Mario game. Yoshi and Wario actually make appearances in core Mario games, and there's so many elements in Yoshi and Wario games that also exist in Mario games, like coins, some of the enemies, etc. Core Donkey Kong games share NOTHING in common with Mario. None of the same collectibles. None of the same enemies. None of the same environments. Absolutely nothing. People forget, Miyamoto helped Rare create Donkey Kong Country. He wanted it to be its own thing. I remember even reading something about why Donkey Kong didn't make an appearance in Super Mario Odyssey, despite all the streets in New Donk City being named after characters from DKC, with Miyamoto saying something to the effect of wanting to keep Donkey Kong out because he feels they should be separate things (currently looking for the source again). Aside from spinoff Mario games, Donkey Kong and Mario virtually have nothing in common. And remember, if spinoffs matter, then what happens if Link continues to make appearances in games like Mario Kart 8? Will we start looking at the Zelda franchise differently?
 

JaiTheGuy

Smash Lord
Joined
Nov 25, 2018
Messages
1,606
#25
What are you talking about? Donkey Kong has literally never appeared in a core Mario game other than the original Donkey Kong, if you even consider that a core Mario game. Yoshi and Wario actually make appearances in core Mario games, and there's so many elements in Yoshi and Wario games that also exist in Mario games, like coins, some of the enemies, etc. Core Donkey Kong games share NOTHING in common with Mario. None of the same collectibles. None of the same enemies. None of the same environments. Absolutely nothing. People forget, Miyamoto helped Rare create Donkey Kong Country. He wanted it to be its own thing. I remember even reading something about why Donkey Kong didn't make an appearance in Super Mario Odyssey, despite all the streets in New Donk City being named after characters from DKC, with Miyamoto saying something to the effect of wanting to keep Donkey Kong out because he feels they should be separate things (currently looking for the source again). Aside from spinoff Mario games, Donkey Kong and Mario virtually have nothing in common. And remember, if spinoffs matter, then what happens if Link continues to make appearances in games like Mario Kart 8? Will we start looking at the Zelda franchise differently?
The only reason DK (and sometimes his supporting cast) appears in Mario spin-offs is for homage to the OG Donkey Kong. The DKC series and mainline Mario series are not related in any way.
 
Joined
Jul 1, 2018
Messages
629
#26
The only reason DK (and sometimes his supporting cast) appears in Mario spin-offs is for homage to the OG Donkey Kong. The DKC series and mainline Mario series are not related in any way.
I mean, DK did appear in Yoshi’s Island as one of the Star Babies, so this isn’t completely correct. Plus, Mario vs/& Donkey Kong titles do exist.

In my opinion, all of these titles are connected to Mario wether it be Yoshi or Wario, but that doesn’t discredit them in any way. Each have their own identity separate from Mario, DK more so than others.

Ultimately these franchises are there own, and should be viewed as their own franchises separate to Mario even if they are technically connected. DK should get treated well even if that means more “Mario characters” on the roster, since DK is separate enough from Mario. It’s like having the cast of Batman and Superman, sure they are connected within the larger DC Universe, but both are so distinct that they are their own properties.
 

Ryu Myuutsu

Smash Champion
Joined
Mar 24, 2013
Messages
2,141
Location
Niigata, Japan
3DS FC
3668-9945-1996
NNID
BahamurShin
#27
Yep, I would say that they share the same universe and timeline. This doesn't mean that DK isn't its own thing.
 

Quillion

Smash Master
Joined
Sep 17, 2014
Messages
3,128
#29
What are you talking about? Donkey Kong has literally never appeared in a core Mario game other than the original Donkey Kong, if you even consider that a core Mario game. Yoshi and Wario actually make appearances in core Mario games, and there's so many elements in Yoshi and Wario games that also exist in Mario games, like coins, some of the enemies, etc. Core Donkey Kong games share NOTHING in common with Mario. None of the same collectibles. None of the same enemies. None of the same environments. Absolutely nothing. People forget, Miyamoto helped Rare create Donkey Kong Country. He wanted it to be its own thing. I remember even reading something about why Donkey Kong didn't make an appearance in Super Mario Odyssey, despite all the streets in New Donk City being named after characters from DKC, with Miyamoto saying something to the effect of wanting to keep Donkey Kong out because he feels they should be separate things (currently looking for the source again). Aside from spinoff Mario games, Donkey Kong and Mario virtually have nothing in common. And remember, if spinoffs matter, then what happens if Link continues to make appearances in games like Mario Kart 8? Will we start looking at the Zelda franchise differently?
Wario has never appeared in the main series since SML2, and yes, I consider arcade DK a Mario game, albeit part of the proto Mario series. You also fail to notice that Wario Land and WarioWare share no characters with the main Mario series. Yet you seem satisfied with Wario Land being near-ignored.

And if you think DK has nothing to do with Mario, tell me where they got the idea for Collect 100 of something for a 1-up and jumping on enemies to kill them.
 

Mushroomguy12

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
108
#30
Wario has never appeared in the main series since SML2, and yes, I consider arcade DK a Mario game, albeit part of the proto Mario series. You also fail to notice that Wario Land and WarioWare share no characters with the main Mario series. Yet you seem satisfied with Wario Land being near-ignored.

And if you think DK has nothing to do with Mario, tell me where they got the idea for Collect 100 of something for a 1-up and jumping on enemies to kill them.
Wario was in Super Mario 64 DS.
And going off what Captain Shades said, Wario also appeared in Yoshi's Island DS, if we count that for DK.
 
Last edited:

Swamp Sensei

Today is always the most enjoyable day!
GRimer
Joined
Jan 4, 2013
Messages
33,173
Location
Um....Lost?
3DS FC
4141-2776-0914
NNID
Swampasaur
Switch FC
SW-6476-1588-8392
#31
To explain the DK moveset not resembling his canon self.


That's just because its grandfathered in. 64 move sets are super simple ( due to the tech at the time) and Sakurai doesn't like changing a whole lot due to a fear of alienating fans of how someone plays.

When they had more tech to work with, Diddy and K.Rool had much more cannon stuff they could feasibly use.


And no, I dont think Sakurai has a negative opinion of DK at all. I think he likes the series a lot actually. Just the amount of care put into personalities and animations shows a lot of love.



I think one thing is that Sakurai is afraid of people assuming Yoshi, Wario and DK are just Mario characters. A surprising amount of people treat them as such. He may be afraid to overload the roster with Mario characters in a way.
 
Last edited:

Quillion

Smash Master
Joined
Sep 17, 2014
Messages
3,128
#32
I think one thing is that Sakurai is afraid of people assuming Yoshi, Wario and DK are just Mario characters. A surprising amount of people treat them as such. He may be afraid to overload the roster with Mario characters in a way.
My point exactly. This is also probably why DK's jungle levels are selected over anything else, since it is the best iconography of the DK series. Going beyond that would seem a bit too much.
 
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,124
#33
I don't think Sakurai really dislikes any franchise or really has all that much of a bias. Almost every franchise has limited representation in some way. From Fire Emblem having nothing but sword users to Kirby not really having a lot of modern content to Metroid also getting forced into having almost exclusively lava themed stages. It's just a part of Smash for a lot of series.

We got King K. Rool this game, which is the best we could have really asked for given how lovingly his moveset seems to have been designed. Really, we just need Dixie Kong as playable and we'd be all set for DK I feel like.
 

Ze Diglett

Smash Lord
Joined
Dec 7, 2014
Messages
1,649
Location
Castle Dedede
NNID
ZeDiglett
#34
Honestly, the relative lack of DK content over the years can probably be explained by the fact that the DK series just wasn't very relevant for most of Smash's history. For the entire decade+ gap between DK64 and DKCR (1999-2010, to be exact), all DK really had going for him were a couple of niche platformers and a bunch of gimmicky side titles, which largely flew under the radar. Not to downplay the importance of his series, but for a while, DK himself had basically been relegated to the role of Mario spinoff fodder on the level of Waluigi (along with his partner Diddy, if he was so lucky) to the point that he was mostly recognizable for his role in games like Mario Party and Mario Kart during that time. While I agree that the big ape deserves better now that his series has been pushed back to the forefront by Retro, his lack of Smash rep almost certainly has nothing to do with any sort of bias on Sakurai's part.
 
Last edited:

Mushroomguy12

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
108
#35
I think one thing is that Sakurai is afraid of people assuming Yoshi, Wario and DK are just Mario characters. A surprising amount of people treat them as such. He may be afraid to overload the roster with Mario characters in a way.
Then why did he put a Piranha Plant in?
 
Last edited:

Sean²

Smash Capitalist
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
1,386
Switch FC
SW-7479-8539-5283
#37
I'm going to be honest here about my opinion on something like this.

It's probably a lot easier to design an FE character as a fighter than it is any DK series character that isn't already present. Just saying.
 
Joined
May 5, 2018
Messages
849
#39
Then why did he put a Piranha Plant in?
Given that he said that he included Plant because he wanted to include a character that’s not a typical protagonist, he probably went with something that he’d be sure would be easily recognized by everyone, hence it being an extremely iconic Mario enemy. (How many other series are there that have common enemies that are that iconic?) Plus, unique moveset potential is a thing that exists that tends to get forgotten about when people talk about representation, relevancy, ect.
 

Mccdbz5

Smash Journeyman
Premium
Joined
Feb 15, 2007
Messages
367
Location
Atlanta, Georgia
#40
If he didn't care for the Donkey Kong franchise he wouldn't had given us:ultkrool:given the fan demand over the years.
We got King K. Rool because of the ballot...not sure how the addition of the character validates anything. Had it not been for the ballot, he wouldn't have been included.

Wario has never appeared in the main series since SML2, and yes, I consider arcade DK a Mario game, albeit part of the proto Mario series. You also fail to notice that Wario Land and WarioWare share no characters with the main Mario series. Yet you seem satisfied with Wario Land being near-ignored.
Who said I was satisfied with Wario Land's lack of content? All I'm arguing is that the Donkey Kong Country series is not a spin-off of the Mario franchise. Other than the original arcade game, Mario and Donkey Kong have never coexisted in a core game. From the get go, Donkey Kong has essentially been his own character with his own franchise. The man who created him wanted it to be this way. Yoshi was created to be a Mario character. Wario was created to be a Mario character. That's why his lore states that he was a "childhood rival of Mario and Luigi", alluding to the fact that they coexist. And even aside from that, are we seriously suggesting that the Wario franchise has distinguished itself so much, that we no longer look at Wario as a Mario character the way Donkey Kong has? Wario is more known for his appearances in games like Mario Tennis, Mario Party, etc. among the casual gamer. I guarantee it, especially since he's tied to Waluigi, who's exclusively a Mario character. Most people don't look at Donkey Kong as a Mario character. There's a reason why it's Nintendo's fourth best selling franchise (not including Wii Fit) behind the likes of Mario, Pokémon, and Zelda. Wario's not even close. And there's also a reason why characters like King K. Rool are so insanely popular, who have almost never taken part in anything Mario related (does anyone even remember Mario Super Sluggers?). Also, if you even research the Wario series, it's always dubbed as a "spin-off of the Mario franchise." Donkey Kong is never listed this way.

And if you think DK has nothing to do with Mario, tell me where they got the idea for Collect 100 of something for a 1-up and jumping on enemies to kill them.
You confuse inspiration with being a spin-off. So, because the games have similar concepts, it means the entire franchise is a spin-off? So just about every 2D platformer is a spin-off of Mario. Got it. And personally, I don't even look at Wario as a Mario franchise. I think the franchise has distinguished itself from Mario. I just think Wario was created and used in a Mario game at a time when the Mario franchise had started to flesh itself out, which is why I look at him like like a Mario character, coupled with his name and appearance being that of a Mario character. He also appeared in Mario 64 DS, which is a core Mario game. Donkey Kong and Mario appeared in an ancient core game when the Mario franchise didn't even exist yet. But even then, I'm all for more Wario Land content. I'm even all for more Yoshi content. I always thought Kamek or Poochy could make cool playable characters or Poochy as an assist trophy. Part of the reason I think Donkey Kong is neglected though is because it's a very successful franchise with not a lot to show for it compared to some of the other top franchises. Not just because it is its own thing.

I don't think Sakurai really dislikes any franchise or really has all that much of a bias. Almost every franchise has limited representation in some way. From Fire Emblem having nothing but sword users to Kirby not really having a lot of modern content to Metroid also getting forced into having almost exclusively lava themed stages. It's just a part of Smash for a lot of series.

We got King K. Rool this game, which is the best we could have really asked for given how lovingly his moveset seems to have been designed. Really, we just need Dixie Kong as playable and we'd be all set for DK I feel like.
What you just described is bias though...why is all the Kirby content only from Kirby games Sakurai was a part of? Why is there a ridiculous amount of Fire Emblem characters when you could probably take out half of them and no one would notice the difference? Why does a series like Kid Icarus, that has a total of three games, have AS MANY characters as DK, with way more assets like assist trophies, items, etc. Kid Icarus was even one of the franchises highlighted in the Smash 4 reveal trailer instead of Yoshi, who was part of the original eight...come on. Sakurai has done some blatantly biased things. And the example about how Metroid always get lava stages isn't true. For Metroid, it absolutely is, but there's plenty of other franchises that have stages that are very diverse. Mario, Zelda, Yoshi, Kirby, and Pokémon all have a healthy amount of diversity in their stages. Hell, even F-Zero at least uses different tracks for all of its stages. DK's lack of diversity in stages would be the equivalent of if every Pokémon stage was Pokémon Stadium. Sure, that would make sense and would accurately represent Pokémon, but there's so much more that represents Pokémon.

Honestly, the relative lack of DK content over the years can probably be explained by the fact that the DK series just wasn't very relevant for most of Smash's history. For the entire decade+ gap between DK64 and DKCR (1999-2010, to be exact), all DK really had going for him were a couple of niche platformers and a bunch of gimmicky side titles, which largely flew under the radar. Not to downplay the importance of his series, but for a while, DK himself had basically been relegated to the role of Mario spinoff fodder on the level of Waluigi (along with his partner Diddy, if he was so lucky) to the point that he was mostly recognizable for his role in games like Mario Party and Mario Kart during that time. While I agree that the big ape deserves better now that his series has been pushed back to the forefront by Retro, his lack of Smash rep almost certainly has nothing to do with any sort of bias on Sakurai's part.
While I agree with this statement to an extent, I would argue that even excluding Melee (I feel like Melee should've had Diddy Kong given how big the franchise was at the time, but it could go either way), Brawl even had a lot of DK content they could've used, and even though DK was in the middle of hiatus during that period of time, Brawl's development started in 2005. Donkey Kong was still somewhat relevant in that time period. Donkey Kong Jungle Beat and the Donkey Konga series were both released before Brawl, and both did pretty well. Even then, we got Diddy Kong, who was basically a given at that point, and Rumble Falls, no assist trophies, no items. They could've easily used content from the Country series or from DK 64 (especially given how Ultimate is loaded with content from Ultimate). When Smash 4 came out, we had Returns. No new characters, Jungle Hijinx, no assist trophies, no items. When Ultimate came out, we had Tropical Freeze. We got King K. Rool, who had nothing to do with the release of that game of relevant content, no new stages (which obviously most franchises didn't get new stages), one assist trophy that also had nothing to do with any relevant content, no items. My point is, even when they had relevant content to pull from, they still for the most part, didn't.

Piranha Plants are main series, so he feels that main series Mario deserves the lion's share over its offshoots.
If Sakurai was truly worried about overloading the roster with Mario characters, the last thing he would do is add a character that is undeniably a Mario character.
 
Last edited:
Top