Diddy Kong Racing

Diddy Kong Racing is a kart-racing spin-off title which was released on the Nintendo 64 on November 17th, 1997. It received a remake on the Nintendo DS a decade later in February of 2007, adding a few new minigames, an extra world to race in, and new gameplay modes and mechanics.

The game centers around the titular monkey and his friends as they race through snow, sand, and even space for a chance to take on Wizpig, a villainous extraterrestrial pig who set out to conquer Timber's Island while his parents went on vacation.

The game featured four themed worlds by default, with an extra fifth world unlocked after enough progression in the game's single-player mode. Each world consists of four different race tracks to play on, as well as, with the exception of Future Fun Land, a battle mode course. All race tracks and battle mode maps besides the hub world and the six boss race courses can be played in the game's multiplayer mode with up to three other players.

A notable feature that sets it apart from other mascot kart racers of its time was the ability to ride in three different classes of vehicle - a car, a hovercraft, and a plane. While some levels were tailor-made for one vehicle type, most levels allowed access to more than one and included specific branching pathways and shortcuts designed for specific vehicles.

Diddy Kong Racing is notable for being the title in which future prominent Rare mascots Banjo the Bear and Conker the Squirrel both debuted. While only retaining a supporting role in the Banjo-Kazooie series in the future, Tiptup the Turtle was also featured as a playable racer. Curiously enough, despite Tiptup's ties with the Banjo-Kazooie series, Tiptup remained a playable racer in the DS remake, even after Banjo and Conker were removed.

Two direct sequels were planned for Diddy Kong Racing - one for mobile devices called Diddy Kong Pilot, which ended up being retooled into Banjo Pilot. The other sequel was named Donkey Kong Racing, which featured the racers riding on top of animal buddies seen in the Donkey Kong Country games. Donkey Kong Racing ended up being cancelled the year after it was unveiled due to Microsoft's acquisition of Rare.


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