Jul 8th, 2015


Modern Nintendo fans have former Rare dev Kev Bayliss to thank for Nintendo’s modern interpretation of Donkey Kong, a character that transitioned from the 8-bit arcade days to the fully 3D version we have now in the newer Donkey Kong Country and Super Smash Bros. games. In a portion of an internal Playtonic interview, Bayliss discusses how he worked on redesigning Donkey Kong to fit the modern era.

When working on his re-design I was just given a brief to make him look a little more modern than how he looked when he appeared in his own ‘Donkey Kong’ Arcade game. Nintendo were happy with the direction I took him in, and although he’s been tweaked a little over the years since, he’s pretty much the same now as he was when I modified him.

Bayliss mentions that he never met Shigeru Miyamoto until years after the Donkey Kong redesign and Miyamoto never shared his opinion on the re-design, but given that Donkey Kong’s design hasn’t changed too drastically over the course of the past several years, it’s obvious that Nintendo is pleased with the original redesign.

Today it makes me smile to see so many products with DK on the front, and that he’s pretty much still the same as he looked when I gave him a once-over. So that’s good enough for me – I must have done something right!

If you’re interested in reading the rest of the interview where Bayliss discusses his work on other Rare titles like Killer Instinct all the way up to his current project with Playtonic, Yooka-Laylee, be sure to check it out here. It’s an interesting read for anyone who appreciates the history of the games industry and Nintendo characters in general.

local_offer    donkey kong  Nintendo  playtonic games  rare  wii u