Donkey Kong NES is an arcade game where you play as Mario, who must run, jump, and climb ladders to rescue Pauline from a giant gorilla named Donkey Kong.
The game's plot revolves around Donkey Kong kidnapping Mario's girlfriend, Pauline, and Mario's mission to rescue her. Set on a construction site in New York City, the game uses graphics and animation to tell the story visually. Donkey Kong's character is portrayed as the villain, while Mario is the hero. The game's cutscenes and animations provide context and add depth to the gameplay, a pioneering feature in video games.
Donkey Kong smirks when Mario fails, while Pauline is depicted with a pink dress and long hair, expressing distress through a speech balloon that says "HELP!" Mario, wearing red overalls and a cap, is a relatable character designed with simplicity due to graphical limitations. The game's artwork and promotional materials further emphasize the cartoon-like character designs, with Pauline resembling Fay Wray from the 1930s film King Kong.
Make sure not to overlook Donkey Kong Country, an exciting game set on Donkey Kong Island. In this adventure, your objective is to reclaim the stolen banana hoard from the nefarious Kremlings.
Donkey Kong NES consists of four unique stages, each representing 25 meters of the construction site that Donkey Kong has climbed. In the first stage, Mario navigates a construction site filled with crooked girders and ladders, avoiding barrels and oil drums thrown by Donkey Kong. The second stage involves climbing a five-story structure with conveyor belts carrying cement pans. The third stage features elevators and bouncing springs. In the final stage, Mario must remove rivets from platforms to make Donkey Kong fall and rescue Pauline. These four stages make up one level.
After completing each level, the stages repeat with increased difficulty. Donkey Kong becomes more aggressive, throwing barrels faster and sometimes in diagonal directions. Fireballs also speed up, making the game more challenging. The fourth level consists of five stages, with the final one at 125 meters. However, level 130, known as the "kill screen," is an unintended programming error that ends the game after a few seconds.