By trial and error, I found out Super Mario 3D Word’s Fort Fire Bros. theme goes surprisingly well with the Donkey 64 DK Rap . . . once it has been sped up a little. I always felt like the Fort Fire Bros. beat was pretty good to go with some lyrics back when I first played 3D World around a decade ago now? (Wow!) The beginning of Fort Fire Bros. reminds me slightly of Donkey Kong Country's (Super Donkey Kong's) "Island Swing," which is played in the first level of the game. Just like “Island Swing”, Fort Fire Bros, slowly builds as more instruments join into the song and eventually reaches a strong climax where the instruments all break loose. Fort Fire Bros also has some similar rhythms to "Island Swing" making it also feel fitting to mix it with. On top of Fort Fire Bros and the rap tracks, I ended up also mixing Piranha Creeper Creek on top of it as well for some extra "jungle" groove - which may be slightly overkill!
Besides the soundtrack for this animation, I had attempted to animate the more "current" generation of the DK Crew. DKC: Tropical Freeze also came out over a decade ago? (What!? Where is DK?) The other Kong in DK64 have sadly been out of the spotlight since Rare was bought in the early 2000s, likely due to them being characters they created :( Sad enough to say, I felt like it made sense to replace them with the most recent recurring characters, Dixie & Funky. Although Tiny, Lanky, and Chunky will not be forgotten!
I consider the designs of the DK Crew, Kremlings, and other minor characters to be a more simple, stylized version from their gaming representations. DK in particular, I honed more in on the 1981 Donkey Kong arcade's design for some of DK's face while the rest is most similar to DKC's design.
As far as the style of the animation goes, I tried to stress fluid transitions between scenes - if you watch the whole animation through (or even loop it), you will notice there are no cuts. Furthermore, I incorporated a lot of DKC’s platforming design elements in the animation - silhouettes, platforming layers, and vibrant jungle backgrounds full of life.
Despite the Super Mario Bros. Movie coming out this year and having the DK Rap song in it was not directly inspired from that - as I had already been working on this prior. However it may have motivated me to complete this a little sooner, believe it or not, haha. Diddy Kong and Funky Kong also released in the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Course Pack Wave 6 a week prior to this animation being completed, but all in all the DK series has been pretty quiet.
Completionists/scavenger hunt seekers: Because DK64 is one of the biggest Collect-a-Thon games, if not the largest out of any game, I decided to hide a bunch of DK themed collectables / items / animals from the games. Here is a list of what you can find if you want to “101% this animation”:
‣ KONG letters (in order of the animation)
‣ 9 puzzle pieces + one extra puzzle-looking item from some other special Rare game
‣ All of the animal buddies in “Donkey Kong Country” titled games
‣ DK Coin
‣ Banana Coin
Good luck hunting for them all!
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0:01 - DK Rap (Vocals) mixed with Fort Fire Bros. & Piranha Creeper Creek ~ Donkey Kong 64 & Super Mario 3D World
0:46 - Current Capers (aka "Neo Aquatic Ambiance") ~ Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze
All music and sound effects are owned by Nintendo.