With so little coming to the Wii U, when a game such as Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze comes along, well, you just have to snag it. I was not disappointed in this title, nor the corresponding strategy guide from Prima Games. Although Prima Games might not be able to compensate for my lack of platforming skills, they did save me a good bit of time! Let us dive in, shall we?
The Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze strategy guide begins with a nice portion dedicated to getting players acquainted with the game. Here, readers find what the various items do, how to spot secret paths, and descriptions on the different companions and how they aid Kong on his quest for saving the island. What caught me by surprise is that at the end of the enemy description portion there is a listing of the bosses as well. I liked this approach as there is a little story and some bonus nuggets of information tucked away in the description. Don’t pass up reading this section.
The walkthrough is where a lot of time saving happens. Each new island comes with a breakdown of where the stages are, how many puzzles pieces are contained within, and if a particular stage comes with a secret exit or not. From there, each stage is broken down in finer detail.
I ended up studying each stage before jumping into the game for a few reasons. First, the maps will require a bit of memorization. While all the K.O.N.G letters and puzzle pieces are clearly displayed, when the action gets going, it’s hard to stop and look at a map. There are also summaries of various points of interest, places that will test player dexterity, and instructions on how to obtain the harder to acquire collectables. It’s a lot to try to read or glance at when knee deep in action or trying to perfect a speed run of the stage.
The boss battle breakdown comes in rather handy, and boy was it a detailed affair. Before players tackle any boss, thoroughly read through what the authors have to offer. There is a fair amount of info here, such as how the different boss phases work, what to look for when trying to attack, and things to be weary of in the battle arena.
The last few pages go to the bonus content. This is more fan service than anything overly specific such as achievements, special nuances, or where all the little Easter Eggs are located. The concept art is beautiful and fits well with the game and guide. What I did enjoy was the timeline of the game releases. Man, just reading the descriptions of the prior games brought back so many memories. This is especially true when reminiscing how awesome the first game in this series was on the Super Nintendo. It is clearly an area to trigger nostalgia, and it worked….well!
I can’t really find anything to overly gripe about on the Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze strategy guide. The navigation was easy thanks to different colored pages corresponding to where I was at in the game. The maps, while cluttered at times, saved me countless hours of game time. If this guide could have boosted my jumping and timing skills, that would have made this a pure five out of five. I enjoyed this guide and I make no hesitations in recommending it as a solid purchase.
SGR Rating 4.5/5
Author: Nick von Esmarch & Cory Van Grier
Publisher: Prima Games
Editions Available: Paperback
Acquired via Publisher