Donkey Kong Jungle Beat is a 2D platformer that uses a unique bongo controller (engineered primarily for Donkey Konga) for gameplay. The controller has four controls: two pads (left and right), a clap sensor, and a START/PAUSE button. The pads are for movement, the clap sensor converts noise input to clapping, and the START/PAUSE button is for…well, you know.
The game has some familiar platforming concepts like running, jumping (by pressing both bongos at once), wall jumping, backflipping, ground pounding, and swimming. However, it also has some unique concepts like midair combos (I guess you could call them “parkour combos” because DKJB is not a fighting game) and uses for clapping, of which I will start with the former.
Parkour combos are achieved by jumping in the air and performing a series of tasks such as backflipping, ground pounding, swinging on a vine, activating a kitty parachute…well, just watch the video below to see the many things that can raise your combo.
More combo means more score from bananas, and more score is always better. However, if you’re in the middle of a parkour combo and get hit, your combo and all the bananas you have collected during said combo will disappear in a flash.
The uses for clapping are numerous. First off, clapping creates a shockwave that consists of two main parts: the inner shockwave and the outer shockwave. The outer shockwave does minor tasks like bouncing fruits and popping bubbles, while the inner shockwave does more powerful tasks (although I can’t think of an example off the top of my head). Clapping also allows you to grab stuff (most notably bananas and grab monkeys) within a small radius.
Overall rating: 10/10. Like Skyrim with bongos. In all seriousness, the game does have one heck of a fun factor, especially during the boss battles (mainly the other Kongs and Cactus/Ghastly King). Optimizing it takes ridiculous effort, though. Hurts, too.