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The many missable details of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

Nintendo and Retro managed to add so many tiny touches

Russ Frushtick is the director of special projects, and he has been covering the world of video games and technology for over 15 years. He co-founded Polygon in 2012.

Back in 2014, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze launched on the Wii U. I’m pretty sure it did, at least. Like many people, I had never played it, because it was on the Wii U. But Nintendo has been slowly re-releasing all of the Wii U games on Switch, and Tropical Freeze is the most recent to get that treatment.

Thank god it did, because holy damn, this is a great game.

There’s plenty to wax poetic on, from the music to the level design, but I wanted to draw your eye to one thing in particular: the innumerable tiny details that make the game world so lively. For example: There’s a unique idle animation for each potential Donkey Kong pairing.

And that’s really just the beginning of them. While playing, I kept a close eye out for these touches and was astounded by how many there were. I pulled some of my favorites into a video, but there are probably dozens more that I missed.

The magical thing? None of them need to be in there. The game would technically play the same without these details. But Nintendo always seems to add that special spark to bring a game to that next level.