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Cart #dinkykong-0 | 2023-03-07 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | License: CC4-BY-NC-SA

Welcome to the Pico-verse - a pixelated land of tiny horizons and even tinier characters. In the Little Apple, a bustling town on the seaside, something terrible has happened! An oversized simian sprite has escaped and taken a citizen in its cruel clutches! Making its way through town, it has climbed up the construction site of the town’s tallest building. But one brave soul stands forth, determined to rescue their fellow citizen from the dreaded… Dinky Kong!

How to Play

Select your hero - choose from Minio or Smalline.
Press ⭕️ to start.
Move with ⬆️⬇️⬅️➡️
Jump with ⭕️.
If you reach the top, Dinky Kong takes the Captive higher up and structure changes shape.
When certain structures are cleared, you save the Captive.


Jump over barrels and enemies for points
Get the hammer to destroy barrels and fiery enemies
Collect the pick-ups for extra points
Bonus points awarded based on time remaining
Extra life at 7000 points

Gameplay preview

On the Demake:

A group effort, the demake began as a simple reimagining of the original done as a series of Pico-8-sized pixel drawings and quickly grew into a full-fledged game. Read all about it here in the February edition of Pico View. The creators make no claim over the original game nor it’s characters - we simply sought to use our skills to humbly follow in the footsteps of true giants. No profit is made off of this game - it is quite simply a Pico-8 hobby project. We sincerely hope you enjoy playing it and, if you like it, we highly encourage you to purchase the original game or one of its many official ports - there’s nothing quite like the original Donkey Kong!

On Minio:

Well, he’s a courageous bundle of pixels with a knack for jumping. Seize a nearby hammer and he’ll pummel flaming enemies and barrels alike. It’s kinda difficult to get 64 colored squares to look like anything much less a whole person, but we’ve managed to squeeze as much character as possible into this tiny hero. It was delightful to see him first come to life inside Pico-8 and we hope you enjoy playing him (or rescuing him)!

On Smalline:

In researching the game, we read on an Atari modders forum about a dad who had introduced his little daughter to one of his favorite games as a kid - Donkey Kong on the Atari 2600. She loved the game but after playing it she innocently asked her dad if she could pick the Pauline character instead. She could not, and seemed dejected at discovering this. Wishing only to keep the love of playing the game in her heart, her father carefully modded the game to make her wish come true. Inspired by this, other modders followed suit, creating versions of their own. We are proud to follow in their footsteps with our own tiny version - Smalline!

On Dinky Kong:

Well, if our heroes are miniscule, then our “huge” villain, Dinky Kong, is merely small. Playing on this idea, the sprite in the menu depicts Dinky Kong wearing a tiny fez. A cap similar to ones worn by small monkeys rattling tin cups with coins in them next to a man playing a hurdy gurdy as seen in old cartoons. Maybe our “big” threat is simply an under-sized street performer loose in a strange tiny world!

Pro Tricks

If you're a DK Pro gamer, a few of the original arcade tricks have been implemented (like wall jump escape and points gained by jump proximity), other tricks like barrel-steering are not (yet?) in this remake, some other mechanisms have been simplified and other dirty tricks and exploits (like jumping next to Kong on Rivets stage) have been purposely removed or fixed.


Programmed by @Heracleum
Graphics & sound effects by @Trog
Music & sound effects by Trog's son

P#126683 2023-03-07 01:11 ( Edited 2023-03-07 23:40)


I thought I had seen this sometime before, a shrunken Donkey Kong with these pixels - but I think I am mistaken.

The animation timing and movement in this game is flawless and correct with the original - no easy feat.

Gold star definitely earned + 💗 Favorited !

Well done to all involved:

@Heracleum + @Trog

P#126691 2023-03-07 01:27 ( Edited 2023-03-07 01:28)

... slight problem guys, @Heracleum and @Trog.

If you force the level to be say "Elevators" when you lose a life it does not return to elevators, it returns to the slanted girders, the 1st level.

P#126698 2023-03-07 05:11

Excellent demake!

P#126730 2023-03-07 19:41

@dw817 yes, let's say that stage selection here is just for quick testing, or simply curiosity, to let you immediately see what that stage is like and how tough is at the specified difficulty level; it even skips both intro and 'how high can you get' screen and you can imagine how useful it's been for me during the development.
But as soon as you die -or finish that stage- you'll be back at the usual flow and particular sequence of stages, which in "Donkey Kong US set" is not even a simple sequence like 12341234..(as it was for the Japan set) everything depends on the Level you're at or the starting difficulty level you've set in the main menu. So yes that selection is valid for the first life only. For instance, if you set starting stage Rivets at difficulty Level 1, and you successfully finish the stage, curiously enough the next one you'll get is.. Rivets stage again because that's the second stage in the sequence for Level 1.

P#126746 2023-03-07 22:45

May I suggest, @Heracleum. And this is up to you.

When doing a stage selection, have only that stage appear. So if you choose Stage Selection and Rivets and defeat the Rivets level in stage 1, level 2 is also the Rivets but at the next higher difficulty, level 3 would be Rivets at the 3rd difficulty level, etc - possibly even keeping a set of unique high-score for this special selection.

This would give players a chance to "bone" up on their skills for levels they find particular difficult - or if they are especially fond of one of the stages and don't want to go through the other ones each time.

P#126749 2023-03-07 23:57

@dw817 sounds like an excellent solution 👌

P#126755 2023-03-08 01:33

Guess this could not have been done any better. Kudos to the dev. Great port!

P#126805 2023-03-08 21:27

Wow! My favorite arcade game ever! Awesome job! Congratulations!

P#126982 2023-03-11 16:22

Totally awesome i so love the art and flawless gameplay the movement is great😉👍
Do you guys think you’ll be doing DK Junior that would be so cool.

P#127151 2023-03-14 23:52

@Jessica8D Thanks! ^_^ No “Dinky Kong Jr.” plans at the moment, though I did once draw this mock-up of that game, for fun, like I had done initially for this game.

P#127169 2023-03-15 12:17

Oh wow that one looks so so 😍good
Maybe one day you’ll put it all together to play. I will keep an eye out
But I would have to say excellent work on DK . Your artwork is really good.
How long did it take you to make DK?

P#127174 2023-03-15 13:41

@Jessica8D The coding took, I want to say, a couple of months - though that was all Heracleum’s doing so I’m not sure the total amount of time - I’m certain that was the bulk of the invested time overall. The drawing didn’t take much time at all - 7 hours active drawing time (maybe twice these total in actual total time because one has to pause and examine the work as it progresses) for the initial mock-ups of the four boards. Creation of a proper sprite sheet with all animations, plus all menu and larger sprites was 11 hours active drawing time (again, twice that total). The banner image at the top of the page took 2 hours 45 min. All this was spread out over the project’s timeline but mostly concentrated at the beginning. So grand total looks like 20 hours 45 min active drawing or 41.5 hours total - about a single work week I guess. The art did also get refined over time by myself and by Heracleum as things progressed so all told there’s more hours in there, but that was my contribution. Music/sfx had me keying in my son’s interpretation of the sounds into pico-8 and was easily another 10 hours or more of both of our time as we entered and tweaked things. A good many sfx we’re created by both Heracleum and myself and my son so we picked the best fit of the bunch there. Sfx are super difficult to get right I found. I had also spent a good deal of time researching and info gathering as well - maybe another 15 hours there? I didn’t keep track of that real closely. Maybe a few hours for the post write up above. It flew by rather fast it seemed - time flies when you’re having fun! ^_^

P#127193 2023-03-15 21:47

@Jessica8D Yep, personally I've spent most of the time in the span of 3 months (from mockup to finished game) playing the original game or watching gameplay videos on YT recorded by the pro gamers. It's one of the top titles in arcade gaming history so it deserved a demake as faithful to the original as possible, within the limitations of Pico-8.
It'd be fun watching a DK pro play this version 😆

P#127201 2023-03-15 23:22

Nice you got that time down to the T😉
I know you can get lost when on pico8 and having fun.
I can see the time put in to your game and it shows great effort
bravo to the team for you hard work now every one can enjoy this classic even on pico8.
I would love to see a little pro tournament👌😎🕹

P#127233 2023-03-16 17:50

Hi @Heracleum:

I just wanted to check to see if you were still working on the ability to choose a level and stick with it whether you succeed it or not ?

P#127239 2023-03-16 18:47

Nice little game

P#127264 2023-03-17 18:56

Wow! What an awesome game!!

And I am delighted that you included the gender reversal. Representation makes such a difference. My 8 year old daughter wouldn't have given this a second look if she had to be the boy, but she's now determined to win the game.

P#127453 2023-03-22 11:29

@Ampa yes that was @Trog 's brilliant idea! And not only the idea: Smalline, the female character, was already present in the spritesheet Trog provided me since day one 👌

P#127484 2023-03-22 19:11

@Ampa Hearing about your daughter wanting to play the game in part because of the inclusion of an alternate female hero character was easily the best part of my day. Very heartwarming to hear that it makes a difference. 🥹 I hope she enjoys playing Smalline!

P#127491 2023-03-23 00:03

i'm learning how to code with pico, so i'm a noob. so i dont know how you do it, but its cool.
I'm reffering to the text. at first i was gonna comment on how i liked how you had dithered the edges to make everything softer. then i paused and notice all the writing is flickering between two different fonts and colours to create the look. i really like the idea of flickering between the two colours to kinda make a new colour using persistence of vision. thats clever as hell, and its got me curious how many different colours can be made just flickering between different colours to ''create'' new colours. i've seen stuff that creates a new pallette for you to use. but simply overlapping two sprites of different colours to make new colours is mind blowing to me with how new i am to this.
ive played games for, lets just say a loooong time. now learning how to make them, makes all the old stuff from when i was younger new again as i see what it actually takes to make them do what they do. even for games now.
seriously cool stuff.
the monkeys cool too. but man those colours.

P#131777 2023-07-09 16:47

@D0S81 thanks yes flickering offer a series of extra fx like colour blending (I mainly needed the cyan/teal for ladders), semi-transparency and font antialias. Only downside: it's kinda painful to watch recordings/streams of the gameplay -at less than 60fps- 🤪

P#132159 2023-07-20 09:53

Thanks for a great demake! One tiny thing - when I pick "reset cart" option here, in the web player, high score doesn't reset.

P#132255 2023-07-22 13:53

@lastofavari the "Reser cart" option is present in every cart and simply restarts the cart (shortcut Ctrl+R), it's not supposed to erase anything actually.
Glad you liked our game! 👍

P#132270 2023-07-22 23:17

Amazing DK!

Dinky Kong Jr pleeeeease. YOU ALREADY HAVE A GREAT MOCKUP, GOSH! :D Hope you find time for one somedaaayyyyyyyy

P#133241 2023-08-18 22:20

@Trog Still hoping for a Dinky Kong Jr. <3

P#134136 2023-09-10 15:02

@thattomhall I have put together a full sprite sheet for it, as well as mock-ups of the other three stages, but after some soul-searching I don’t think I’m the best person to pull this project off from a code standpoint. While I know I have a long way to grow as a coder, and people on and offline have been encouraging regarding my potential ability to do it (great community, Pico-8), I think the amount of learning still needed to accomplish Dinky Kong Jr. would result in the game being very, very, under par. Heracleum’s code is clearly amazing, as it always is for his excellent games and projects, but I confess to only partially understanding it, heh. I got very lucky that he wanted to tackle Dinky Kong because I absolutely could not have pulled it off. I did love playing Junior in the arcades back when and seeing it done in pico-8 would be very cool. I’d be very happy to pass on the sprite assets that I have created for it so far to another dev who is more capable of making it into the game that it should be, if anyone would be interested in creating it. ^_^

P#134138 2023-09-10 16:38

@Trog Yeah I thought you'd just do it with @Heracleum as most of the Dinky Kong code would be really close to Dinky Kong Jr. Maybe you all will align dev schedules in the future.

I would but getting it JUST right like Dinky Kong takes tons of polish work. Also, don't know how jammed you folks were for tokens and such.

P#134150 2023-09-10 21:00 ( Edited 2023-09-10 21:01)

I cant even play the game in order like you can do in the official arcade version. I need to manually choose which one I play because when i choose the first stage and play that then I expect it to go to the second one and then the third and then the fourth but after I finish stage one it just keeps to the last one. You need to fix that this sucks...

P#134736 2023-09-21 21:11

> in order like you can do in the official arcade version

You're probably used to the Japan set having the simple sequence of stages like 12341234...
while this remake is based on the "Donkey Kong US set" which follows the sequence:
Lvl 1 – 1, 4. Bonus 5000
Lvl 2 – 1, 3, 4. Bonus 6000
Lvl 3 – 1, 2, 3, 4. Bonus 7000
Lvl 4 – 1, 2, 1, 3, 4. Bonus 8000
Lvl 5 on – 1, 2, 1, 3, 1, 4. Bonus 8000

Then you could try selecting 3 as starting Level, to have the initial 1234 sequence in the expected order?

P#134743 2023-09-21 23:21 ( Edited 2023-09-21 23:31)

i was planning to make Donkey King, the ripoff of donkey dong i mean kong where you are mereo and you stop demeterus king

P#136822 2023-11-02 22:34

Really good version of donkey kong.

P#141308 2024-02-08 22:59

I got 253000! Nice DK clone! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5z7hq7EqivY

P#150846 2024-07-04 17:58

@wirretheman woah great score! I think my best is around 120k
And yeah as you've probably noticed watching the video, unless you manage to record at 60fps it's better to turn Flicker off in the Pause (P/Enter) menu 👍
Thanks for sharing the video!

P#150856 2024-07-05 00:54
P#150871 2024-07-05 06:17

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