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Donkey Kong (US set 1)

| 1981

Release type:
Units produced: Nintendo of America
Controls/Input Device: Control(joy4way), Buttons(1)
Number of Players: 2
More Creator:
More Coder/Software:
License from/Copyright:
SoundMix: Mono
More Graphics/Artwork:
More Music/Sound:
Acting Talent involved:
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Game Awards Nominations:
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Avg. Playtime:
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MAME folder name: dkong

Display: raster 256x224 @ 60.61Hz (60.61 pixclock)
Sound: 1 channels

Emulated in MAME via driver dkong.c:
Status: good; Emulation: good
Graphic: good; Sound: good; Color: good
Palette size: 521; Savestate: supported

c-2j.bpr with 256kb
sha1:f9c872da2fe8e800574ae3bf483fb3ccacc92eb3 crc:d6412358
c-2k.bpr with 256kb
sha1:b50ec9e1837c00c20fb2a4369ec7dd0358321127 crc:e273ede5
c_5at_g.bin with 4096kb
sha1:3fe3599f6fa7c496f782053ddf7bacb453d197c4 crc:b9005ac0
c_5bt_g.bin with 4096kb
sha1:c7966261f3a1d3296927e0b6ee1c58039fc53c1f crc:1c97d324
c_5ct_g.bin with 4096kb
sha1:acb11a8fbdbb3ab46068385fe465f681e3c824bd crc:5ec461ec
c_5et_g.bin with 4096kb
sha1:d76ebecfea1af098d843ee7e578e480cd658ac1a crc:ba70b88b
l_4m_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:793dba9bf5a5fe76328acdfb90815c243d2a65f1 crc:59f8054d
l_4n_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:92e5d379f4838ac1fa44d448ce7d142dae42102f crc:672e4714
l_4r_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:ecf95db5a20098804fc8bd59232c66e2e0ed3db4 crc:feaa59ee
l_4s_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:3bc482a38bf579033f50082748ee95205b0f673d crc:20f2ef7e
s_3i_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:144d24464c1f9f01894eb12f846952290e6e32ef crc:45a4ed06
s_3j_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:6c82b57637c0212a580591397e6a5a1718f19fd2 crc:4743fe92
v-5e.bpr with 256kb
sha1:c2bdccbf2654b64ea55cd589fd21323a9178a660 crc:b869b8f5
v_3pt.bin with 2048kb
sha1:976eb1e18c74018193a35aa86cff482ebfc5cc4e crc:15e9c5e9
v_5h_b.bin with 2048kb
sha1:a57ff5a231c45252a63b354137c920a1379b70a3 crc:12c8c95d
Mameinfo.dat entry:
0.37b10 [Yochizo]


- 0.147u2: hap fixed clone Omega Fighter Special. The game fails to boot or finish post. After showing bad rom errors, the game resets.

- 0.147u1: Fixed maincpu rom loading.

- 0.122u7: Fixed gfx1/2/3/4/5 rom loading.

- 0.89u3: Changed Z80 CPU2 clock speed to 5MHz.

- 0.37b10: Yochizo added 'Omega Fighter' (UPL 1989) and clone Omega Fighter Special.

- 21st November 2000: Yochizo fixed some graphics bugs in the Omega Fighter / Atomic Robo-kid driver.

- 8th November 2000: Yochizo sent in a driver for Omega Fighter and Atomic Robo-kid.

- 25th April 1999: Dumped Omega Fighter Special.

LEVELS: 8 (restarts once)

Other Emulators:

* FB Alpha


* Raine

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Romset: 2016 kb / 8 files / 457.8 zip

Credits Mameinfo and Mametesters Project Robert J. Rabgno et al.
History.dat entry:
Donkey Kong (c) 1981 Nintendo of America, Incorporated.

Export version for North America. For more information about the game itself, please see the original Japanese upright version entry.


[Blue Upright model]
The blue uprights (which are the most common), are a very rectangular affair, with quite a lot of artwork. They have orange-ish sticker style side-art (with Mario and Kong on them), with control panel, marquee, and monitor bezel graphics to match. This game does not use a standard arcade monitor. It requires a 'Nintendo Compatible' monitor (a normal monitor will display the picture like that of a photographic negative). This simple little monitor change basically launched the entire Nintendo Vs. Unisystem later on. Because only Donkey Kong series games and Vs. titles would work on these monitors (forcing operators to buy conversion kits for those games instead of a competitors game).

[Red Upright model]
The red upright versions are actually "Radar Scope" cabinets that have been factory-converted to Donkey Kong. These are fairly rare and feature slightly different gameplay.


Donkey Kong was released in July 1981 in the USA.

Donkey Kong was to be Nintendo's first big breakthrough into the western - and particularly American - arcade scene. Before Donkey Kong, Nintendo was having difficulty establishing itself in these markets. After the game's massive success Nintendo quickly established their headquarters of Nintendo of America to ensure that the game was being distributed properly.

Mario was named after Mario Segale, the landlord of Nintendo of America's first warehouse location in Seattle (though it was debated whether this occurred before or well after the game was released). Mario was originally called 'Jumpman'; only the arcade version of Donkey Kong has ever called the hero Jumpman; most home coversions, particularly the NES version, game him the Mario name.

Accounts differ as to how Nintendo of America felt about the game before its release. Many sources claim that they all felt sure it would be an absolute disaster while others say they were more optimistic.

Although Mario is a plumber in later games, his career in Donkey Kong is that of a carpenter. Mario's appearance (and consequently his career) was dictated by the primitive graphics hardware of the time - the only way to have his arms appear 'separate' to his torso was to have them as a different color - hence he wears 'dungarees'. The mustache is present merely to indicate where Mario's mouth is, again due to the low graphics resolution imposed by hardware limitations. Mario wears a hat so his head is distinguishable from the game's black backgrounds.

About 60,000 units were sold in the US. Oddly, despite it being one of the ten best selling games of the golden age of video games, it never reached #1 on Replay's popularity charts. Instead, it was stuck at #2 behind mega hits "Pac-Man" and "Ms. Pac-Man" - the two best selling games ever.

Donkey Kong inspired a catchy hit song by Buckner and Garcia called 'Do The Donkey Kong' released on the 'Pac-Man Fever' album.

A Donkey Kong unit appears in the 1983 movie 'WarGames', the 1984 movie 'Gremlins', the 1985 movie 'The Heavenly Kid', and the sitcom 'Two and a Half Men' (Season 5, Episode 2 - People Who Love Peepholes).

MB (Milton Bradley) released a board game based on this video game (same name) in 1982. Save the girl and avoid the barrels and fireballs as in the video game. The gameboard is laid out like the video game's Ramp Stage. 'Can You Battle Donkey Kong and Save the Fair Maiden?'.

Donkey Kong also spawned a cartoon series of the same name : Ruby-Spears Productions. Produced by Joe Ruby and Ken Spears. Originally aired September 17, 1983 as part of 'Saturday Supercade' on CBS. Mario was voiced by veteran voice actor Peter Cullen, while Donkey Kong's voice was provided by the late actor/comedian Soupy Sales (1926-2009).

Michael Jackson used to own this game (Blue Upright model). It was sold at the official Michael Jackson Auction on April 24, 2009.


The original Japanese version had all four stages displayed in their original, logical order 1-2-3-4.
For this US version, they changed it to match the 'How High Can You Try/Get?' theme, with the stage order as follows :
L-01 : 1-4
L-02 : 1-3-4
L-03 : 1-2-3-4 (as in all levels of the Japanese version)
L-04 : 1-2-1-3-4
L-05 : 1-2-1-3-1-4
L-06 through L-21 all remain the same as L-05
L-22 : 1 (Kill screen).


1. Donkey Kong (1981)
2. Donkey Kong Junior (1982)
3. Donkey Kong 3 (1983)


NOTE: Only ports released in North America are listed here. For ports released in other regions, please see the original Japanese upright version entry.

* Consoles :
Atari 2600 [US] (1982) "Donkey Kong [Model 2451]"
Colecovision [US] (1982) "Donkey Kong [Model 2411]"
Mattel Intellivision [US] (1982) "Donkey Kong [Model 2471]"
Nintendo NES [US] (June 1986) "Donkey Kong [Model NES-DK-USA]"
Atari XEGS
Atari 2600 [US] (1988) "Donkey Kong [Model CX26143]"
Atari 7800 [US] (1988) "Donkey Kong [Model CX7848]"

* Handhelds :
Nintendo Game Boy [US] (June 1994) "Donkey Kong [Model DMG-QD-USA]"

* Computers :
Tandy Color Computer [US] (1982) "Dunkey Munkey"
Tandy Color Computer [US] (1982) "Donkey King"
Tandy Color Computer [US] (1983) "The King"
Tandy Color Computer [US] (1983) "Monkey Kong"
PC [Booter] [US] (1983) "Donkey Kong"
PC [Booter] [US] (1983) "Gorilla Gorilla" : part of the "FriendlyWare P.C. Arcade" suite
Atari 800 [US] (1983) "Donkey Kong [Model RX8031]"
TI99/4A [US] (1983) "Donkey Kong [Model RX8512]"
Commodore VIC-20 [US] (1983) "Donkey Kong [Model RX8513]"
Apple II [US] (1983)
Commodore C64 [US] (1983) "Donkey Kong [Model RX8514]"
PC [MS-DOS] [US] (1997) "Champ Kong" by CHAMProgramming

* Others :
VFD handheld game [US] (1982) released by Coleco.
LCD handheld game [US] (Game & Watch) released by Nintendo : double screen.


Edit this entry: http://www.arcade-history.com/?&page=detail&id=34723&o=2

Licensed from Alexis Bousiges under a CC Attribution 3.0 License
cheat.dat entry:
00000000 6001 00000090 FFFFFFFF Infinite Credits
00000000 6228 00000006 FFFFFFFF Infinite Lives
20800000 19C9 000000C9 FFFFFFFF Invincibility
00000020 6394 0000000F FFFFFFFF Infinite hammer upon pickup
00000000 62B1 00000063 FFFFFFFF Infinite bonus time
00010020 638C 00000099 FFFFFFFF Infinite bonus time (2/2)
00000000 62B9 00000000 FFFFFFFF No fireballs on ramps
00000000 6403 00000000 FFFFFFFF No fireballs on factory
00000000 65A0 00000000 FFFFFFFF No pies on factory
00000000 6400 00000000 FFFFFFFF No fireballs on rivets
00000000 6500 00000000 FFFFFFFF No jacks on elevators
00000000 6392 00000000 FFFFFFFF No barrels on ramps
00000000 6215 00000001 FFFFFFFF Always climb
00000001 6215 00000000 FFFFFFFF Deactivate climb
00000000 6217 00000001 FFFFFFFF Hammer
00010000 6691 00000001 FFFFFFFF Hammer (2/2)
00000001 6290 00000000 FFFFFFFF Finish sub-level 4 Now!
00000701 6229 000000FF FFFFFFFF Select current round
00000703 6229 000000FF FFFFFFFF Select next round
20F00000 0F7D FE043802 FFFFFFFF Fix Kill Screen Bug Fixes the bug which kills you on level 22 regardless, see here - http //donhodges.com/how_high_can_you_get.htm
20F10000 0F81 3E0447A7 FFFFFFFF Fix Kill Screen Bug (2/5)
20F10000 0F85 17A717A7 FFFFFFFF Fix Kill Screen Bug (3/5)
20F10000 0F89 178080C6 FFFFFFFF Fix Kill Screen Bug (4/5)
20810000 0F8D 00000028 FFFFFFFF Fix Kill Screen Bug (5/5

Credit Pugsy's MAME Cheat file