Going bananas

Donkey Kong is Nintendo's first major star, having made his début in the arcade game that effectively turned the company into the global monster it is today. However, when Mario decided to become Super on the NES and take his place as Nintendo's number one mascot, DK was bumped down the pecking order and relegated to a secondary role — until 1994, that is.

UK studio Rare — now part of the Microsoft family but back in the '90s a key Nintendo ally — took the popular primate and gave him his own platforming adventure on the SNES. Donkey Kong Country was remarkable not only for the fact that it played brilliantly, but also because it used ground-breaking CGI visuals which looked leagues ahead of other 2D games on 16-bit consoles.

Today marks the 20th anniversary of the game's North American launch (it arrived in Europe on November 24th and Japan on the 26th), and if you're keen to celebrate this moment in style then you can download the game on the Wii U Virtual Console (provided you're in Europe). Also, don't forget to check out our exclusive "making of" feature from earlier this year.