Reggie Fils-Aimé Identifies A Donkey Kong Game He Hated

Reggie Fils-Aimé Identifies A Donkey Kong Game He Hated

As part of his book tour, Reggie Fils-Aimé recently took part in an interview where he stated that he “hated” a classic Donkey Kong game.

Former Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aimé recently commented on an entry in the Donkey Kong franchise that he “hated” and campaigned against. Fils-Aimé’s comments have been circulating in the gaming news sphere over the past few weeks following the release of his recent book “Disrupting the Game,” in which he pulls back the curtain and gives some insight into his long-running relationship with Nintendo.

Fils-Aimé made a major mark on Nintendo’s legacy, shaping the company’s impact in North American audiences through various marketing campaigns and key decisions like releasing Wii Sports alongside the Nintendo Wii. The NOA head played a significant role in defining the modern iterations of not just the Donkey Kong series, but various other flagship franchises, including Super Mario and The Legend of Zelda. Fils-Aimé was also positioned at the center of a number of console launches, including the Wii U and Nintendo Switch, which each represent different extremes of Nintendo’s hardware success in the 21st century. Because of his long history with the company and his decidedly public-facing approach to marketing, Reggie has become something of an icon within the gaming community, becoming the subject of several memes over the past few years.


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While it might appear that Fils-Aimé had consistent synergy with Nintendo across all releases and decisions, that has not been the case. In a recent G4TV interview (via Nintendo Life), Fils-Aimé expressed his distaste for Donkey Konga – the predecessor to Donkey Kong Jungle Beat. The game was certainly experimental, swapping out a traditional controller for a set of plastic bongos, and this new direction apparently didn’t sit right with Fils-Aimé, who stated that he was concerned about the game damaging the Donkey Kong brand. Ultimately, Fils-Aimé admitted that the game sold well despite his reservations.

Due to his ubiquity within the world of Nintendo and its marketing, some may be surprised that the company moved ahead with a project that Fils-Aimé was not confident about. It turned out that Reggie’s worries were mostly unfounded, as Donkey Konga was far from a failure and didn’t cause noticeable harm to the franchise’s brand.

This statement is proof that, although he was a key part of Nintendo’s contemporary successes, Fils-Aimé has not been infallible in terms of his judgement. Nintendo as a whole is a company that takes big swings, as evidenced by its focus on motion controls in Wii Sports and associated titles, alongside its unconventional hardware endeavors. This inventive approach was taken with Donkey Konga, and will hopefully appear in some form for future Donkey Kong titles as well.

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Source G4TV/Twitter (via Nintendo Life)

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Nick Rodriguez
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Nick Rodriguez is a Senior Writer for Screen Rant. While vigorously passionate about books, movies, and music, he was particularly drawn to video games since he first laid eyes on Spyro the Dragon and (much to his mother’s distaste) Silent Hill. More recently, his favorites have included Disco Elysium, Red Dead Redemption II, Kentucky Route Zero, and the Mass Effect series. Presently, he spends most of his time typing away in the chilly state of Wisconsin.

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