GENRE: Side-scrolling Platformer
DEVELOPER: Retro Studios
PRICE: £49.99

Since their first altercation over twenty years ago Mario and Donkey Kong have always been polar opposites. Mario is deft and spritely, while Donkey Kong is an overwhelming force of nature to be reckoned with.

The same is true of their side-scrolling adventures. While Mario's games are inviting affairs of acrobatic prowess that have increasingly offered players a guiding hand throughout, Donkey Kong Country has always been brutal and unforgiving, offering a series of challenges that see players hang on by the skin of their teeth.

However, with the new Switch port of DK's superb 2014 WiiU adventure Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, It appears that Nintendo are attempting to readdress the balance, with the introduction of a Funky new mode

Funky Mode allows players to either play through the game as Donkey Kong and co with more health or take on the role of his good friend Funky Kong.

Funky may look like a rad 90s  throw back, but with five hearts of health and with the powers of Diddie, Dixie and Cranky Kong combined (double jumps, hover jumps and safely traversing spikes) he makes the game more bearable for people unaccustomed to the country series chaotic platforming, and makes collecting everything in a level feel much more manageable for players, like myself, who played through Tropical Freeze but couldn’t face going back to 100 per cent it.

What works so well about Funky mode though is that it eases Tropical Freeze’s considerable challenge without making it non-existent. The levels are just as unforgiving and perilous, and the stakes just as high, it merely gives less skilled players the tools they need to conquer their own personal Everest - without spoiling the fun for those that want the full gruelling experience.  

Those considering a double dip, or just whether the Switch release is ‘the definitive version’ it also boasts greatly reduced load times that are essentially halved, native 1080p rendering in docked mode, a generally better frame rate throughout, and thanks to the versatility of the Joy-Cons it still maintains the numerous control options from the original.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze on Switch is a cool package that those that missed it the first-time round will not want to miss, four years after its original release it remains a blast.

A superb mix of old and new, that addresses criticism levelled at the original release Tropical Freeze is another fine addition to the Switch library and considering the calibre of releases on the console thus far, that really is saying something.

Score: 9/10