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Play OverviewPlay Overview

Donkey Kong (1981) is a series of running and jumping games where you play Mario, who navigates a single screen to rescue the princess. It was the start of the platform game genre and although is now dated, can still be played on a wide range of systems.

Play involves climbing a maze-like industrial construction site, avoiding barrels and other hazards to get to the top and save the girl. When you do you move on to the next level. It's a simple challenge but one you need to perfect to get a high score. Unlike more modern games there are no save points, when you are out of lives you start from the beginning.

Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Donkey Kong 2 years ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson and updated 17 months ago.
There are lots of games similar to Donkey Kong. Here are some we picked for you:

Play StylePlay Style

This is a Platform game with Action and Traversal elements. This is a single-player game.

You can play this game in the following styles:


Play Time: It takes between 5 minutes and half an hour to play a round of this game.


This game is good if you want to:

This game has helped players develop their Skill as part of the following pathways:

This game has been the inspiration for the following activities:

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Content Rating

This game has been rated PEGI 3.

Skill Level

8+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game.

Our Game Pathways reveal how 9-year-olds play this game:


You can only play this on older systems (GameCube, Nintendo 2DS|3DS and Nintendo Wii) but can usually find it second hand on eBay.

Donkey Kong

Switch Store Switch -
There are no additional in-game purchases, loot boxes, adverts or subscription costs.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 01/01/1981, updated in 2015

Out Now: 3DS and 2DS, GameCube, Switch and Wii

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Platform (Action and Traversal)

Accessibility: 0 features documented

Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels

Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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