First Appearance: Donkey Kong, 1981
Likes: Bananas, parties, drums (preferably bongos)
Dislikes: King K. Rool, someone stealing his bananas, bananas gone bad
Donkey Kong. The Ape that started it all (actually, he’s not an ape, but whatever)!
He’s a giant gorilla who loves to party almost as much as he loves Bananas! He’s always seen with his trademark tie, and he even has his own franchise!
He was the villain in the arcade game Donkey Kong, in which Mario had to save a young maiden, Pauline, from his clutches. Needless to say, the rivalry of Mario and Donkey Kong go way back!
However, after a few early DK games, which had other classic characters such as DK Jr. and Stanley the Bugman, Donkey Kong starred in his own game, Donkey Kong Country, which introduced his best buddy, Diddy Kong, his father/grandfather, Cranky Kong, his arch-enemy, King K. Rool, and other characters such as Funky Kong, Candy Kong, and animal buddies Rambi, Enguarde, Expresso, Winky, and Squawks. Other DK games would feature other friends of DK such as Dixie Kong, Wrinkly Kong, Kiddy Kong, Swanky Kong, Tiny Kong, Lanky Kong, and Chunky Kong.
For a while, it seemed as though Mario and Donkey Kong had settled their rivalry, until it was rekindled in Mario vs. Donkey Kong. In it, DK wanted some of the new Mini Mario toys, but they were sold out. Desperate for some, he burst into the Mini Mario factory and stole a whole bunch of them. Mario chased after DK to retrieve them all. Thus, the Mario-DK rivalry was on, again.
DK has been featured in hundreds of games. The ones he starred in, though, are Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Junior, Donkey Kong 3, Donkey Kong (Game Boy), Donkey Kong Country, Donkey Kong Land, Donkey Kong 64, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, Mario vs. Donkey Kong, Donkey Konga, Donkey Konga 2, DK: King of Swing, and Donkey Kong Jr. Math. Games to come are Donkey Kong Wii, Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis, Donkey Konga 3 (Japan), DK Bongo Blast, and DK: King of Swing DS. Donkey Kong as also been featured in Mario spin-offs such as Tennis, Golf, Baseball, the upcoming Mario Hoops 3-on-3, most of the Mario Kart games, and all of the Mario Party games!