Playing Donkey Kong 64

We got our hands on a final version of Donkey Kong 64 today, and here's what we found.

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While the game's graphics and cinematic opening surely wowed us at first, the game's not-so-obvious starting point threw us for a loop. The game's setup is a little confusing. First you have to train and learn the moves you'll use to play. Once you're done with training, you're allowed to roam around the game's massive environment. If you follow the instructions from the characters in the game right when they tell you, you'll be OK, but once you begin to play, you may forget what you were supposed to do after looking at the vast environments. After you enter the game's first level, the game really starts rolling, and you start swinging from vine to vine almost immediately - a good thing.

The game's controls seem to be fairly responsive and intuitive, although the roaming camera that usually stays behind you makes it rather hard to see where you're headed. After a while, though, you start to learn how and when to manually set up the camera so that it gives you the best angle.

A lot of the beginning stuff in the game seems a little too remedial at first. But after getting into some of the later levels, unlocking other characters to play as, and learning new abilities, the game seems not only challenging, but a whole lot of fun.

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