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TroyFullbuster's blog

Kingdom Hearts 3: Do we know the Seven Lights?
1:10 PM on 08.10.2014
Mario Kart 8 Review
8:10 PM on 06.14.2014
Is a New Super Mario 64 in the works? A prediction based from Mario Kart 8
1:21 PM on 06.13.2014
Super Smash Bros Wii U and 3DS Video and Impressions!
1:44 PM on 06.12.2014
DuckTales Remastered Review
5:13 PM on 04.17.2014
Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze (Wii U) Review
6:14 PM on 04.02.2014





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About
Hey what's up guys my name is Michael Troina. Future GameInformer or IGN editor
I am a hardcore avid video game player, I love watching anime and reading manga.
My full walkthrough/playthrough's are found on my youtube account here
Youtube page
I am also an athlete I play baseball, basketball, and football; I appear sometimes on my friends college sports radio show
I also blog a LOT (I'll put the links below) ranging from myIGN video game blog to my just Kingdom Hearts blog.
The systems I own are: SNES, N64, Gameboy-GBA, DS lite, PSP, Wii, Xbox 360, Dreamcast, GameGear, SEGA Genesis, PS1-3, Gamecube.
My favorite series/games are: Legend of Zelda, Super Mario (Bros 3 is the best but all the games), Sonic the Hedgehog, Final Fantasy IX, Uncharted, Marvel vs Capcom 2, Banjo-Tooie, Phoenix Wright, and Kingdom Hearts
Favorite animes: Code Geass, Gundam SEED, Durarara!!, Fairy Tail, Bleach, DragonBall Z
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At the end of Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance, for those who beat it on Critical Mode (a great critical mode that game had), or collected everything on the other modes (who did that?) you would be granted the bonus ending. SPOILER*** The ending was brief, but impactful; with Mickey and Master Yen Sid discussing Xehanort's plan about the x-Blade, what they should do to counter Master Xehanhort's plan, and of course the biggest part is the end where Riku brings Kairi to the Mysterious Tower in order to be trained as a Keyblade Wielder ***END OF SPOILER.

Before I continue on, and this may count as somewhat of a spoiler for those who did not play Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep or Kingdom Hearts 2, Kairi has had the power of the keyblade, bestowed from (ugh) Aqua and the power was first revealed in Kingdom Hearts 2 at/by the end. Although, it was rarely used and has been pretty low-key (pun), it has shaped somewhat of the question impending this blog.



Now, throughout the entire plot of Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance, which chronologically is the most recent, you hear about the Seven Lights v. The Thirteen Darknesses. All in all, a short-version point of the game is actually figuring out Master Xehanort's (if you didn't play or don't know that's the bold old-one) plan, where he tries to make Sora the 13th vessel, rather than Riku and how he plans to create the true X-blade rather than the psuedo-version he made with his experiment. This experiment for those that do not know was where Xehanort used Vanitas and Ventus aka pure light and pure darkness (Birth By Sleep) to forge his own blade. In order for Master Xehanort to do this he will need to capture the Seven Princesses of Light (Kingdom Hearts 1 people, stay with me), so in turn he can gain access to Kingdom Hearts and start another Keyblade War (BBS).

[if you need a refreshing or don't believe me here is the secret ending]

As mentioned in the previous paragraph, the Seven Lights v. Thirteen Darknesses is the central figure of the upcoming Kingdom Hearts 3. However, this is not clearly answered or defined which is pretty much why I made this blog. Here's some direct information  "The resurrected Master Xehanort reforms Organization XIII, only consisting of several incarnations of himself from many alternate timelines. So far only known members are Master Xehanort himself, Xemnas, Ansem, Seeker of Darkness, Young Xehanort, Braig, and Isa. There are also six others whose identities are not yet revealed. Sora was supposed to be a member, but Lea (Axel for people who don't know anything) saved him from being possessed by Xehanort. Master Xehanort says that someday a new Organization, which he calls 13 Seekers of Darkness, is supposed to battle against the 7 lights. The Organization soon vanished into darkness after Sora was saved."



During Riku's story in KH3D, Young Xehanort explains to Riku that they originally wanted him to be their 13th Vessel but because he has built an immunity against the darkness, like the Keyblade, they chose Sora instead, henceforth Lea and Riku saving Sora etc.

Now this is the most IMPORTANT PART AND THE REASON BEHIND MY QUESTIONING, "Master Xehanort mentioned that 1 of the 7 lights was in his possession - this, given that he merged with Terra, is presumably his heart, as Ventus's remains in Sora and Aqua is trapped in the Realm of Darkness."

With Terra under his control, that brings up the question is Terra on what side of this impending war? Even Master Xehanort mentions that he (Terra) is 1 of the 7 lights, so in order to figure the team out we must include him, as the all-knowing Xehanort knows this to be true. Including Terra, if we list the Seven Keys of Light we get:

1-Sora
2-Riku
3-King Mickey
4-Terra
5-Ventus
6-Aqua
7-Lea
8-Kairi

Clearly, there is a contradiction here as I listed 8 including Terra. However, we all know the Birth By Sleep trio is out of commission and maybe Kingdom Hearts 3 will focus on their rescue. The real concerning problem is Lea or Kairi not a true Keyblade Warrior of Light? There is a better argument in the case of Kairi because she was bestowed the power in her heart by Aqua in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep by Aqua in Radiant Garden. However, you can also mention that Kairi is one of the Princesses of Heart/Light and those seven must be protected (because they are needed to make the true X-Blade).

But, there's another twist, what if it is actually Sora who is not a Key of Light? He was never truly blessed with the power like Riku (through Terra) and Kairi, and he was only given the Keyblade due to Riku's descent into darkness in Kingdom Hearts. Though the Kingdom Hearts 3 trailer when Sora picks up Master Eraqus' keyblade (THE HYPE ON THAT PART) could be a sign he is destined to be the best of them all. A counter/the same could be said for Lea/Axel in a way that he even surprised Master Yen Sid when he summoned a keyblade himself.



That curious look cause he doesn't know gjlgjdflikg

We won't know until we get Kingdom Hearts 3, or whenever the issue will be truly addressed. However, this is food for thought and I would love to hear fellow Kingdom Hearts fans (not those who only "play the main games" because EVERY DAMN GAME IS IMPORTANT) on what they think of the situation of the 7 vs 13. In addition, who do you the remaining six darknesses will be? Will they be old Organization XIII members? All new faces? Let me know down below!

those sources on my own gifs doe

-

Michael Troina plays games for his Twitch Channel EVERYDAY @ Troyfullbuster and his Youtube Channel: SNB Gaming that is only if you want to watch awesome and funny gaming videos with full walkthroughs, unboxings, and laughs! You can also find Mike and SNB on Facebook by liking the page! Thanks guys!







TroyFullbuster
8:10 PM on 06.14.2014

It's finally here! Every new console release we get from Nintendo we can expect a Mario Kart and this time is no different with Mario Kart 8 launching for the Nintendo Wii U. Following its predecessor from the 3DS (Mario Kart 7), Mario Kart 8 goes for the follow up title in sequential order rather than having a name (Super Circuit, Double Dash) or implying the name of the system it is on (Super Mario Kart, Mario Kart DS). Like every new Mario Kart, new items, along with new characters, and of course new tracks are introduced, as well as the remake of some of the "classics" spanning from previous Mario Kart generations.

Considering Mario Kart is not really the most normal of games I'm gonna change up my style for this review as I include my impressions as well.

The Good

Mario Kart 8 has plenty good and this game will definitely keep you addicted for a long time and I'm not even talking about the legendary couch co-op/friends over play! From the once again flawless online play (hello Mario Kart Wii and 7), unlockable new characters, vehicle customization's, and the new highlights system, Mario Kart 8 provides more fun than just racing in a prix by yourself. The real joy from this comes from the Mario Kart TV/highlights system because it brings the best moments of each race to life and let's you constantly relive them. Mario Kart TV is broken down into your last 12 races and your 6 favorite highlights and span from 30, 45, 60 seconds, or if you want the entire race! You can also focus on other players besides yourself and change what you want the "action" of each highlight to be; with examples on awesome drifts rather than you destroying someone with shells. Nintendo also decided to up their game on the sharing factor as not only Miiverse can receive the video highlights you decide to share, but you can upload them directly to YouTube for everyone!



For those of you worried about the gameplay of Mario Kart 8 because of its anti-gravity than don't! MK8 transitions to the anti-gravity segments perfectly, making it seem like it's been part of Mario Kart all along. The anti-gravity areas also bring an emphasis on drifting as well as hidden boosts to add to the fun!

If you haven't even seen a screenshot of Mario Kart 8 then you certainly are missing out on one of its best points and that's it graphics and its music. Mario Kart 8 is just gorgeous to look out and each level is a stunning beauty that just makes you look at the Mario universe in glamor. Worlds we've seen growing up in full HD just go on to show how amazing the Mario universe is. Music once again has that same Mario Kart flair; making playing the game on mute almost a crime in itself. Tracks you are almost bound to fall instantaneously in love with are: The Electrodome, Thwomp Ruins, CloudTop Cruise, and Toad Harbor.

The Bad

As much good as there is in Mario Kart 8, there is just as much bad. First off, the characters/roster is bit underwhelming in that the only new characters we get our the Bowser Kids (excluding Bowser Jr) and a very unwanted new character Metal Pink Peach (or whatever she is called). The diversity we saw in Mario Kart Wii with Diddy and Funky are gone and we are left with characters who don't have as big an image in the Mario/Nintendo Universe. Next up, would have to be the underwhelming tracks and bad remake tracks.  While I did mention a few great tracks, the number of great tracks doesn't match the number of good or even alright tracks. Many of the tracks in Mario Kart 8 feel a bit...too monotonous; being that most areas just feel the same with different backgrounds. It makes the tracks become a bit predictable, though I still think it takes some time to learn each track individually.

The remakes is where I have the most hate because of Mario Kart 8 and its infatuation with Mario Kart 64, one of the series worsts. In addition, the courses chose couldn't have been more boring as we have Sherbet Land, Toad's Turnpike, and Grumble Volcano. But my problem with the remakes comes in the fact that some of the courses have changed a bit, to adapt to the new anti-gravity and: A- I don't believe they were designed well and B- changing a retro course doesn't make it the same, it makes itself an entirely new course! Few courses did the change right (like the DKCR Mario Kart 7 level as it didn't change it that much) but if you look at a level like Rainbow Road Mario Kart 64 (or Sherbet Land) you can see the change and it really doesn't make it feel the same.

The last things I wanted to talk about, for the bad, in Mario Kart 8 is the difficulty of the game and a bit of about the Mario Kart TV. Apparently, once again Nintendo did a Skyward Sword and ruined a part of the game listening to outside fans or the internet forums and decided to nerf the Blue Shell and classic Mario Kart punishments. The Blue Shell, doesn't appear as much (it did appear a lot in MK7 I do agree but I didn't mind) and the damage/punishment time it has is gone as you have the same effect as getting hit by a Red Shell, rather than being blown upwards and having to recover your speed. In addition, falling off the track, could not be more user-friendly as Lakitu comes to save you in no-time flat, ridding the Black Screen, as well as the free boost Lakitu gives you from the drop (if timed correctly). In one point, I feel off only to be saved right away and maintain my position in a race, that's not what Mario Kart is about! Falling off usually means losing a lot of time and your position, but apparently MK8 doesn't think so. Lastly, apparently Nintendo wants everyone to get a 3-star ranking because the only requirements for it are to come in 1st place in all your races, compared to the old games where that wasn't merely enough.



The gripe I had with Mario Kart TV is just that you cannot control the camera angles for the replays, sometimes giving off awkward camera positions, or the not the greatest of angles for your highlights. Another problem with this is the fact you can Slo-mo while looking at highlights yet when you upload something, it is just the straight highlight, with no option to slow-mo the best parts of your highlight!

EDIT: Deraj reminded me of getting rid of the two item hold which really changes the game. I honestly don't like it and it takes away the advantage the lead racers have especially in the 12-man races we have because being in fist or second we only get one banana or 2 coins (which doesn't protect) and leaves you more vulnerable to more attacks! This stupid ode to Dobule Dash way of holding items is a reason why we can only hold one item but guess what THERE AREN'T TWO DRIVERS FOR TWO ITEMS!

Overall

Score: 8.5/10

Mario Kart 8 is an awesome game, though it doesn't reach the level of Mario Kart DS, Mario Kart Wii or Mario Kart 7. The game is a gorgeous game to look at and once again brings friends and family together for an awesome experience, but it is missing that secret touch. It may come to me months after writing this review, like it did for me in my "I can't stop playing Mario Kart 7 online" but for now, it is one of the more basic entries in the franchise. Needless to say this still is a must-buy game for any Wii U owner.

-
Michael Troina plays games on his Twitch channel Troyfullbuster or his Youtube Channel: LegendofMikeandBill that is only if you want to watch awesome gaming videos with full walkthroughs, unboxings, and news-updates! You can also catch TLMB on Facebook so make sure you like us or on WordPress!
Read more at http://www.destructoid.com/blogs/TroyFullbuster#z9D6pXM3euH3aIkv.99








Mario Kart 8 review [tomorrow]

What if I told you Super Mario 64 2, or Super Mario 128 (good ol' rumors), or even Super Mario Universe! Well, of course you'd be just as excited as I am (not more though) because Super Mario 64 is one of the greatest games to ever exist. But, of course a direct sequel to it, is one of the things many true gamers dream of; even to this day. So, why am I mentioning all this Super Mario 64? Simple, it's just one of crazy old Troy's predictions that just may so happen at E3 or sometime in the future!

1st- The Castle

What really made me come to this conclusion though is Nintendo's latest release, the underwhelming or overrated Mario Kart 8. Playing through Mario Kart 8 over the past two weekends, I've come to see some stuff that has led me to believe that a new Super Mario 64 is in the works. The first piece of evidence is that of Peach's Castle, also known as the entire hub world for Super Mario 64. Peach's Castle can be seen for the first time in glorious 1080p HD graphics not only once, in the good track bad game N64 Royal Raceway (Super Mario Kart 64 [boo]) but also in Mario Circuit (Mario Kart 8 track)! Seeing the castle multiple times, means Nintendo had to make the castle twice, and the fact it appears in multiple tracks, especially the N64 version piques my curiosity!








NOT A COINCIDENCE!

2nd- Unagi the Eel

My second piece of evidence has to do with a more "an actual true fan of Mario to notice" kind of thing. The level is Dolphin Shoals and its connection to Super Mario 64 and/or a sequel? The eel! Unagi the Eel, is the eel from Super Mario 64's Jolly Roger Bay. If you don't believe me that the eel is Unagi, I think the maroon/red and yellow stripes give it away. But, the better question is why is Unagi featured in HD and in a brand level for Mario Kart 8? Well, according to my crazy theories the reason they would remake this character model is because they are looking to use him again in, either a Super Mario 64 HD remake or Super Mario 64 2!







Lastly, because it is owed!

My last reason? Well, even though Super Mario 3D World is AMAZING [my GoTY last year], at first many fans, not just Nintendo fans, felt burned when Nintendo announced it rather than a Super Mario Universe game and the Wii U has been starving for a full on 3D Mario game. EAD Tokyo Mario team hasn't done anything yet and while Super Mario Galaxy 2 was an extreme disappointment and underwhelming, it still left a lasting impression on all gamers, and left us hungry for what new things Mario will bring to another new console generation. All the stars point (ha pun) to Nintendo bringing us our favorite plumber in an epic all new 3D adventure, hopefully it will come true!

-
Michael Troina plays games on his Twitch channel Troyfullbuster or his Youtube Channel: LegendofMikeandBill that is only if you want to watch awesome gaming videos with full walkthroughs, unboxings, and news-updates! You can also catch TLMB on Facebook so make sure you like us or on WordPress!








Guess who played Super Smash Bros Wii U and the 3DS version! Spoiler Captain Falcon...I mean me. Super Smash Bros Wii U and 3DS were available at the Best Buy E3 Event, in which Nintendo once again partnered up with the electronics store as they did last year for the Year of Luigi to provide a great away E3 experience for their fans. The event consisted of us waiting on line (3 hours!) and Best Buy would bring you to a Wii U where you would play a 2 minute 4-player match with Items on. Each player uses a Wii U Pro Controller so forget the GCN adapters and forget knowing how to play right away unless you own one (still don't bank on it). Here's the best part/bonus part you also get to play the 3DS version as well!



Wii U Version

The Wii U version is what you got to see if you watched the Smash Bros Invitational; 20 characters, items on, and a limited 6-8 choices of stage that you and your competitors/friends/strangers agree on. The match is a free-for-all, that is 2 minutes long, and seemed to me that the items were on low, in fact my match didn't receive one Smash Ball! Each player plays with a Pro Controller, Nintendo's controller for the Wii U and the supposed-to-be controller for Smash until Nintendo made the good and bad decision of the GCN Adapter. Honestly, although it felt weird playing the Pro Controller (I mainly use the GamePad for Wii U games and of course a GCN controller for Smash), I thought the controller felt fantastic, controls well, and definitely convinced me to get one for future titles. I vowed I would learn Smash 4 with the GamePad and the well I am adding the Pro Controller to that list (though the button mapping is different).

Onto the actual game, being a pretty good Brawl (won that official tournament last week!) and Project M player I saw a definite in-between mix of speed, closer to that of PM and Melee rather than Brawl. The game is more combo orientated, as you can continue punishments through a grab and keeps most of the basics from every Smash Bros. game we have come to love. Some characters are faster, some are slower, but in essence it is very hard to fully judge a game based off a 2-minute demo, especially when the first 30 seconds are learning the controller! Everything happened so quickly, I really feel I didn't get a taste of Smash, but Nintendo did it right, making me even more anticipated than I ever have been before!



note for real players: I tec at 1:40 in the video, so obviously they come back since smash 64, there is no L-canceling or WaveDashing, but I do believe there is WaveBouncing.

3DS

The 3DS version has two differences compared to the Wii U version, and no you do not get to play the exclusive Smash Run, it is a change in the roster and they actually let you go to training mode right before you fight! The roster changes are that Luigi and Toon Link, are available in the form of taking out Zero Suit Samus and Olimar. The 3DS version played fantastically and since the control mapping is so similar to the Pro Controller, I knew right away what to do. The first thing to do is select your character, as I chose Sonic, and like Brawl online waiting room you beat the crap out of SandBag waiting for the other players to get ready.



[MAKE YOUR OWN GIFS DONT STEAL]

Unfortunately, Sonic has no new taunts (YES THIS IS IMPORTANT TO ME) but the 3DS version played smoothly for me. It was a bit harder to do charged Smash Attacks vs. Tilts on the 3DS with the Slider, but like I said the game ran smoothly and looks fantastic. One of the first things I tried was the aiming feature, when you select the character you want to kill on the bottom touch screen and a red lock-on cursor follows their character to keep your eye on them. The black details help the characters become more visible, though the smaller camera on the 3DS makes the stages seem huge. Last but not least, was with the items on the game lags a bit, as when I got Gordo from F-Zero, the game FPS dropped considerably, but quickly restored itself.

I just wanted to say I am super excited for this and I cannot wait. Smash 4 is going to be great....well when they announce good characters like Ness, Falcon, Jiggly, and Ganon of course.

-
Michael Troina plays games on his Twitch channel Troyfullbuster or his Youtube Channel: LegendofMikeandBill that is only if you want to watch awesome gaming videos with full walkthroughs, unboxings, and news-updates! You can also catch TLMB on Facebook so make sure you like us or on WordPress!











Life is like a hurricane here in Duckburg!

DuckTales, originally for the NES, which launched in 1989, has decided to comeback from out nowhere more than 20 years later, when WayForward announced they were doing a full HD-remake of the classic Capcom Disney platformer. DuckTales has always been a cult classic and one of the memorable old-school classic Capcom and Disney games that many of the older gamers grew up remembering; so it's only right to see it released so gamers of today can experience a true classic. This old-school platform not only combined everyone's favorite Disney cartoon-TV program and brought it to their hands, but was actually Capcom's best selling game on the NES and GameBoy!



DuckTales Remastered story is like that of the original, only with a bit more details (clearing up things from the NES version for those who wanted valid reasons). The player takes control as Scrooge McDuck who searches the world for five hidden treasures, in order to add onto his title of being the "richest duck in the world". Scrooge's quest begins after finding a secret message in a painting, that the Beagle Boys were trying to steal. Along with the Beagle Boys, you run into classic DuckTales villlains such as Magica de Spell and Flintheart; as well as Scrooge's friends like Launchpad. Now with a list of items and where to find, Scrooge and the boys set off to start a riveting adventure!

DuckTales Remastered gameplay is 2D platforming with some exploring aspects. In DuckTales you control Scrooge McDuck and use his cane for all assortments of exploration; such as attacking enemies or using it to bounce to higher places. The cane can be set for an Easy Pogo for newer players, where they only have to press one button to bounce continuously, or if you play Hard or Expert, the Hard Pogo/original way is of mandatory use; meaning you have to press down and whatever your cane button is set to, so you can use it. The exploration aspect of DuckTales comes in from the fact that this 2D platformer allows a player to go "back" in the game; meaning the area left of the player is still a reachable and not out of the game, like in Super Mario Bros or Mega Man platformers.

The main differences from the original DuckTales, besides the obvious remastered graphics and soundtrack, is the added levels. In the original DuckTales, you would travel five levels (same as DuckTales Remastered) only to return to Transylvania for the final boss fight. In the Remastered edition, you got a tutorial level in Scrooge's Money Bank and the final boss got moved to entire new level called Mount Vesuvius. In addition, to the two new levels; added story was created in-between levels to clarify things, such as Scrooge McDuck breathing in space, etc.



Other added features to the game were new boss-move patterns, the expansion of levels, and of course the ability to dive into the legendary Scrooge McDuck bin! Collecting money in the game also led for the player to purchase in-game collectibles, such as artwork or even unlocking the 8-bit OST of the game. For newer players/players who play on easier settings, DuckTales Remastered also included a map, so they could locate puzzle pieces, or needed where to go next.

DuckTales Remastered boasts a beautiful soundtrack both in the remastered or the 8-bit version, so in turn the music boasts a very high score. The graphics are fantastic in every way. I honestly felt like I was playing the DuckTales cartoon, while I ran through my playthroughs in DuckTales Remastered. The game features a 2.5D presentation, with 2D hand-drawn character sprites and 3D modeled levels. Backgrounds and layouts were created by Disney Television artists Mike Peraza and Rick Evans. Finally, the replay-value of the game is moderate-high. The reason, besides trophies, is because of the four difficulty (Easy to Extreme) settings the game has and of course the ability to collect more money to buy collectibles to view.


Overall: 7.5/10


DuckTales Remastered is a good, albeit short game. The chance to replay this NES classic and some true 2D platforming is a pleasure, especially today and I was glad it was done. One point that bothered me was most reviewers complained about the game being hard, or how come on Expert mode you could not save your progress...well it was a classic NES game with NO SAVES! Most games were one beat and done and the feeling of accomplishment when beating a game like this is what makes gaming great. I loved the 8-bit soundtrack and the graphics of the game, although it was just an alright experience overall.

-
Michael Troina plays games on his Twitch channel Troyfullbuster or his Youtube Channel: LegendofMikeandBill that is only if you want to watch awesome gaming videos with full walkthroughs, unboxings, and news-updates! You can also catch TLMB on Facebook so make sure you like us or on WordPress!








Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, is the 5th installment of the Donkey Kong Country series and the second done by Retro Studios, following the massive hit of its 2010 Donkey Kong Country Returns. It is the first DK game in high definition, as well as the first for the Big Ape on the Nintendo Wii U. The game focuses once again on mainly its platforming levels, spanning 6 worlds with different themes. Some changes from DKCR are made to DKCTF, such that Diddy Kong is not the only character you can team up with; as Dixie Kong makes a triumphant return as well as making the legendary Cranky Kong playable for the first time ever! In addition, the blowing mechanic is gone from DKCR and the game allows you to play with either the GamePad, Wiimote [and Nunchuk], or Pro Controller.

Tropical Freeze actually has a story, like DKCR, though it obviously take a huge backseat to gameplay, not meaning as much as this element means to other games. As the Kong's are celebrating Donkey Kong's birthday, the Pointy Tucks (the enemies) and their mysterious shaded figure, notice Donkey Kong Island and intend to inhabit the home. Using a magic horn, an Ice Dragon appears and freezes all of DK Island, allowing the Pointy Tucks to invade the area, and in turn blowing Donkey Kong away. Now, with his homeland taken, it is up to Donkey Kong and his friends to get back his island!



Mentioned before the gameplay of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is a platformer, meaning you play as DK and a partner of your choosing, and you travel to the end of each level, avoiding baddies, making jumps, and of course completing each course. The first thing to notice about the gameplay is Diddy Kong, Dixie Kong, and Cranky Kong; be it you are playing co-op or single player. The Kong's are not balanced like they are in the DKC SNES series, as each now has his/her own special trademark ability, making them more of power-ups for the player's choosing. Diddy has a jetpack (though this returns from the DKCR game) to keep the player floating for a time period, Dixie has a the ability to increase the players jump (rather than her old float mechanic), and Cranky Kong is a rip from the infamous DuckTales video game, using his crane in Scrooge McDuck fashion. Overall, you will find Cranky Kong to be the most useless of the three, which is a bit of a shame because Cranky Kong is a legend among true DKC players; always remembering his rants and crapping on the player how he was so good. The next change that is more noticeable to veterans rather than newcomers, as the underwater mechanics took a full change in this game compared to the former games. The first thing is, Donkey Kong and friends can no longer breathe underwater for however long they like, instead you must use Sonic-esque bubbles to regenerate your oxygen bar so you do not die. The second thing is you can now attack underwater and "swim"; meaning your roll exists underwater as well as the Kong's help you swim faster in their unique ways.

Making a return is the collection of the KONG letters, as well as Puzzle Pieces, and the Temple Artifacts. Throughout each level their are 4 KONG letters to find, as well scattered puzzle pieces that require you to fulfill a task (like collecting all bananas in a certain area), do a special bonus game, or just find in the open! Collecting all the KONG letters in every level of the world will open up the Temple or K-Levels in DKCTF, which are suppose to represent the "hardest levels" for the player. Upon their completion, you are rewarded a Artifact and by collecting all 7 artifacts you are rewarded a secret bonus world. Though the Puzzle Pieces lead to cool things such as a in game OST and concept art, they are unfortunately hidden by tedious tasks or repetitive bonus games. The Bonus Games in past entries, though had similar goals, were always different and represented a challenge, but in this Donkey Kong every single one is the same, so they just become habit by the 3rd world. The tasks in the game for Puzzle Pieces in the game are more annoying than they are skillful, as most of the time it will be something like get all the Banana Coins in this area or destroy every enemy in the area, though it really is up to the player to know when to do this. This kind of works against the 200% people because it makes you stay longer in a level because you are constantly straining yourself to collect basically every single banana. How would you feel trying to collect every coin in a Super Mario Bros. level? While this idea works in the vehicle levels for the Barrel Rocket and Mine Cart, it doesn't work on land platforming. If the idea of this was to make the game hard, then it clearly derives from that point. Another point that derives from the game's overrated sense of difficulty from the community is the fact that you constantly have 999 Banana Coins and 99 lives; so don't worry about ever being short of lives like it's Donkey Kong Country 1-3.

Speaking of vehicle levels, they of course make a triumphant return to the game with no major changes at all! The idea is the same, where you get two hearts, and basically have to survive. On the topic of things that return is Banana Coins and the shop. Though largely forgettable and unimportant compared to the first DKCR, where it was important to visit Cranky Kong to unlock the key to get the other level; this time Funky Kong is running the shop and has items which I really don't know what they do. I believe they are close to the Mega Man shop system we see in MegaMan 9 & 10. Mentioned just before, hidden levels, are now actually hidden as there are multiples of them in each world and require the player to really keep his eye out. Most of the time it requires you to have a partnered specific Kong with you, to find these Jak & Daxter like portals. The last bit about gameplay has to do with the return of DK's animal friends, or I should just say Rambi because none of his animal pals make a return AGAIN. Rambi plays largely the same, though it is disappointing to not see Squawk come back.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze hits a very high note in its term of replay-value, music, and graphics. Honestly, all three parts are astonishing and provide the player with gorgeous visuals with amazing levels themes composed by the legendary David Wise. Though Hard Mode provides the player a new and obviously a harder way to play the game; it is a bit disappointing in the fact that it just turns into a Diddy-fest (well Dixie for most). It would have been better for the Hard Mode to feature classic SNES rules so you can still play as the multiple Kong's except only have 1 heart, rather than just choosing one Kong for every mission.

Overall: 8.8/10

To tell you the truth the score would have been better, but everyone I've heard played the game overrated it to the extreme for me and it didn't match up any of those expectations. The music is good not great, the game is moderate not hard and honestly it's fun but short. I enjoyed my entire time with DKCTF, which spanned about 10-12 days before I hit 200%, the game is good and definitely frustrates a player. I think the best levels were the K-levels and the secret Temple World at the end, 2-K, 5-K, 6-K, and the temples are how a game should be made! When it came to hard mode I just used Diddy for everything and I did feel like I was cheating a bit, but it kind of went away because that is how this game is designed versus it's past games. Once I realized that this game was not DKC2, I moved on and enjoyed it for what it was and a damn fine game at that.
The best thing about my two week adventure with DK was beating that hidden level and putting it up on the Miiverse and getting some kid to say "You are a gaming god"



watch the part at 1:25 for the hidden temple Hard mode
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Michael Troina plays games on his Twitch channel Troyfullbuster or his Youtube Channel: LegendofMikeandBill that is only if you want to watch awesome gaming videos with full walkthroughs, unboxings, and news-updates! You can also catch TLMB on Facebook so make sure you like us or on WordPress!