Way back in 1997 when Nintendo racing fans were going ape over Mario Kart on their N64 console, I was playing Diddy Kong Racing — a challenger to the karting crown programmed by Rare in Twycross in North Warwickshire.
Visually DKR is vibrant, with cutesy graphics and simple, but beautifully realised tracks. The catchy tunes that play add immensely to the overall atmosphere that the game just oozes.
The idea is to explore through a number of worlds that surround an idyllic hub world with one of the 10 characters available — it is here that you can also change your racing craft from the standard kart to either a plane or hovercraft, each handling superbly on the tracks that they are required to perform on. It’s the standard formula here where collecting balloons by winning races opens up new tracks to be raced on allowing you explore deeper into the Donkey Kong Universe within which the game ‘lives’.
In typical Nintendo style, DKR soon introduces tracks where there are coins to collect — getting them all adds a layer of difficulty and frustration and I am sure only die-hard players will succeed in this particular quest.
DKR is a gem, a Rare gem of old that retro fans will lap up and go gooey eyed over and we love it.
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