Known as the redheaded stepchild of the Donkey Kong series, Donkey Kong 3 is a game where you play as Stan the greenhouse man with a sniper spray gun. Donkey Kong has invaded his greenhouse in order to harass the bees Stan keeps inside to help pollinate his flowers. The bees none too happy about this invasion of privacy decide to turn on their master (Stan) for allowing such insolence to happen in their home. Your job as Stan is to scare off the giant gorilla with the most advanced level of bug spraying technology before the bees kill you or your flowers (Stanley is violently allergic to insects).
The gameplay itself was enjoyable, Donkey Kong 3’s reception suffered due the massive departure it had from its predecessor. Donkey Kong 3 was a shooter Instead of a platformer in lieu of jumping barrels and puzzling architecture your job was simply making sure that Donkey Kong either ran out of bugs or you pushed him towards the top of the screen. Rather, than rescuing Pauline or Donkey Kong you were protecting a greenhouse that belonged to a man with no common sense. Yet, in-spite of Stanley’s lack of sense (and personality) he still managed to have a sizable fan base and is a fairly popular albeit obscure character in Nintendo’s history.
Despite its lack of popularity Donkey Kong 3 does have some interesting trivia facts. For example Donkey Kong 3 features one of the most brutal deaths in any Nintendo game. Not only is Stan deathly allergic to insects, if he is hit at all the bugs will swarm him and leave the can of insect repellant on the floor. Stan is actually trying to suffocate/poison a giant gorilla whenever he shoots Donkey Kong. This game promotes the murder and genocide of bees which are terrifyingly important for flowers and the environment. Donkey Kong Jr. was actually in the games source file, but for some reason only known to the developers they never used his character sprite. Donkey Kong 3 was actually one of the NES games you could obtain in Animal Crossing: Population Growing for the GameCube. Despite the overall negative reception, there were still magazines who predicted the game would be a hit at the arcades due to the fast paced gameplay.
Overall Donkey Kong 3 is a very interesting part of the DK series’ history. A bastard child by any other name, it would have perhaps done better if Nintendo had decided to not use the Donkey Kong IP and instead made it a different series. But, this wouldn’t be the last time Nintendo shoehorned a character into a series that wouldn’t fit (*cough* Star Fox Adventures *cough*). Donkey Kong 3 serves as an example in history of Nintendo’s of unwillingness to learn from its past mistakes.