Are your bongos taking up space in your living room and collecting dust? Well if so, then Nintendo has finally come out with another game that makes use of those bongos with their latest game staring our favorite furry ape, Donkey Kong. But instead of grooving to the music like in Donkey Konga, this game is a 2D side-scrolling game that has you using the bongos to get through the game. Does this game use the bongos to their advantage or is this one big gimmick? Read our full review to find out!
To be honest I must admit the whole idea of the bongos seemed a bit gimmicky and ludicrous to me. Frankly, after the first game, I really didn’t know if I was ever going to have any uses for the bongos again. But to my surprise, Nintendo has come out with another game featuring these bongos, but this one is totally different. Is different a good thing?
It’s been a long time since we have seen a Donkey Kong game, and this is probably the closest we will get to another for a while. Donkey Kong Jungle Beat is a game that basically takes a 2D version of Donkey Kong and makes you use the bongos to progress through the game. At first glance, you would actually think it would be a full-on Donkey Kong game, but to be honest your abilities in the game are rather limited. The left bongo makes Mr. Kong go left and you probably guessed it the right bongo makes Mr. Kong go right. To make Donkey Kong do a jump well you need to hit both the bongos as the same time. Also by clapping this is basically your "do everything" button. I think on paper this may sound more intimidating then it actually is, because after about five minutes of playing you should have the formula down pretty good.
So we got the controls, now what? Well now you take part in a pretty basic 2D side scrolling Donkey Kong adventure, that to be honest, doesn’t have a whole lot of meat on its bones. The game consists of a few worlds and each of these words has stages and a nice boss fight as well. One of the keys to success in Jungle Beat is to collect the bananas as they help to gain your health and also increase your score.
The gameplay itself in the game is pretty well done, but don’t be expecting anything new or spectacular because it is pretty limited. The game does try to use a lot of variety to keep you interested, but it doesn’t succeed as the game can be completed in a very short time. You could easily get through the game in a couple of hours, and the reason for this is first off the game itself isn’t that long and it’s just not that challenging. Even the bosses in the game are not overly difficult, just give it sometime and you should be able to take out the boss without breaking a sweat.
Overall the gameplay is good while it lasts, but unfortunately you’re just not given all that much depth for a game that could have been much better then it is. Also disappointing in the game is the lack of challenge that really becomes apparent right away.
The one thing that I did like about Jungle Beat is the fact that it really just looks great from start to finish. Right when you start the game, you will most likely be impressed with how good Donkey Kong looks and the world around him. For the most part I think the character models were great they all contained quite a bit of detail. The environments will remind you of a typical Nintendo style game using bright colors and just an overall fun looking game.
Overall the graphics of Jungle Beat were solid. They were not anything out of the ordinary but instead just made everything look nice and neat and gave off a great graphical experience.
This section was really hard for me to assess because I did have a lot of fun playing Jungle Beat, mainly because you got to use the Bongos. With that being said, I must take into account how disappointed I was when the game ended so quickly and that really ruins the overall fun for me. I mean it’s really a blast to play, but it just doesn’t last long enough.
Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat is just a good game that allows you to really take advantage of your bongos to play a platforming game. However the game lacks depth, and is just too short to be enjoyed. If you really want to hit those bongos, then this game may be a good purchase for you. Otherwise I would say there are better games to spend your money on.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.