| One of my favorite games of all time is Donkey Kong Country for the SNES. Growing up my dad and I have played all the retro games and this is the one that stuck most with me because of its music, gameplay, and non-apparent narrative. |
The game doesnít have a narrative in a very "narrated" sense, but itís hidden through the character's journey, their body movements, and other indicators throughout the levels. However, the games narrative itself isnít all that difficult to pick apart to begin withó an ape and his monkey nephew go take their huge bananas back from a pirate kingó basically killing and ravaging through lands to do so. Morally speaking all parties are at an egregious fault, but I though it would be interesting to talk about the narrative from a metaphorical standpoint about people who at the same ends do something to avenge the means by which theyíve been encouraged to act. That being said, the choices the players are encountered with are very interesting mechanically.
Sometimes the player is free to not kill or knock out the enemies in their way, but at the same time itís so much easier and rewarding at times to do so. I feel this can speak to many instances in the gaming and real world where people take the more rewarding route despite their morally-fragile nature. The way this is resolved isnít really implemented in the game, as it is an action platformer where jumping on things deemed as enemies is the main mechanic to reach a goal. Because of this, and the fact that the game was made in the early 90ís without much philosophical or narrative thought, its hard to say what values are trying to be conveyed. But, this is why I thought it would be interesting, and funny even, to read into a game that maybe has nothing to read into, and thatís the fun part of it.
I always have a blast and have tried to play the game in different ways to create a different experienceó playing the game hitting all the enemies I can, taking a pacifist mode (impossible in this game btw), and have even learned to speed run it. This game offers a lot to both how games can be played as well as what we can take out of it. One just has to know what to look for.
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