DK's digital return

Fans of the naked ape wearing only a tie will be pleased to hear the 1995 Game Boy title Donkey Kong Land is being released in Japan on the 3DS Virtual Console early next month.

Released a year after the success of the Super Nintendo original, Donkey Kong Land has the Kongs recapturing their banana hoard when Cranky becomes jealous of their initial success.

With four worlds, and the same level archetypes as Donkey Kong Country, Donkey Kong Land is considered just as ground-breaking in a multitude of different ways.

This news comes as a surprise considering Rare’s involvement with the original game’s development, and the removal of all three Super Nintendo Donkey Kong Country games from the Wii Virtual Console library in 2012.

It also blows any previous theories regarding possible conflicts between Nintendo and Rare out the window. With any luck, this release hopefully sheds light on the current relations between the old partners, and gives hope that Nintendo gamers are likely to see the beloved Donkey Kong Country series back on the Virtual Console library some time soon — perhaps on Wii U.

Whatever is currently going on behind closed doors, this is great news for Nintendo, Rare and Kong fans alike. Donkey Kong Land will be released on the Japanese Virtual Console April 4th, and is likely to make its way across to the West shortly after.

Let us know your thoughts about the latest Nintendo and Rare developments, and if you would like to get your hands on a digital version of this Game Boy classic.