Diddy Kong Pilot (2001)
|Diddy Kong Pilot|
|Platform(s)||Game Boy Advance|
|Release date||Japan: Canceled|
(planned for February 2002)
(planned for March 4, 2002)
|Mode(s)||Single-player, multiplayer (unimplemented)|
Diddy Kong Pilot is a canceled follow-up title of Diddy Kong Racing for the Game Boy Advance, which was developed by Rare Ltd.. Diddy Kong was the main and titular character of the game. The game involves Donkey Kong characters racing in Planes on Mode 7-rendered courses. It was initially planned for early 2002, but Nintendo sold their share of Rare Ltd. to Microsoft and opted out of their publishing contract. Around the same time, in 2002-2003, before the decision was made to design it into a Banjo-Kazooie title, Diddy Kong Pilot was being redeveloped into an entirely different game. In 2005, the game was finalized as a Banjo-Kazooie title, Banjo-Pilot due to Microsoft's acquisition of Rare in 2002.
Prior to being canceled, Diddy Kong Pilot was planned to be released in Japan in February 2002 and in North America on March 4, 2002.
Diddy Kong Pilot was first shown at E3 2001 and then a few months later at Space World 2001.
One of the characters, tentatively named Redneck Kong,, or "Crappy Kong" was "killed off" early in the game's development, according to the September 3, 2001 edition of Scribes from Rareware and Jens Christian Restemeier, one of the game's developers. Candy Kong would subsequently appear in the background for character selection menus.
One of the builds, said to be presented at a Space World 2000, consisted of a cast featuring both Donkey Kong Country and Mario characters, which would have been a first for a Donkey Kong spinoff. This version allowed players to select between six Donkey Kong characters (Diddy Kong, Cranky Kong, Donkey Kong, King K. Rool, Funky Kong, and Dixie Kong) and six Mario characters (Princess Peach, Mario, Yoshi sitting atop a Lakitu's Cloud, Wario piloting a red biplane similar to the Bulldog, Bowser, and Toad). A tilt control idea that was present in the debug mode of a very early build was dropped in this build, but was retained in the Options mode.
At Space World 2001, the game was at 65% completion, and by October 2001, planned for release on March 4, 2002.
Some time in 2002, Nintendo refused to publish Diddy Kong Pilot, as they found the game "substandard". One of their criticisms was "There's no point in flying up and down on flat levels"). Some Rare employees believed the company was prejudiced since it occurred in a time period just before the Microsoft acquisition. Despite being featured in the DVD of the May 2002 issue of G-Force magazine, none of the Rare games except Star Fox Adventures were showcased at E3 2002.
Rare's other two Donkey Kong titles from E3 2001, Donkey Kong Racing and Donkey Kong Coconut Crackers, were canceled in August 2002, one month before Microsoft's acquisition of Rare, while Diddy Kong Pilot received no official announcement of the cancelation.
On September 15, 2011, after ten years of no new information regarding the game, a former Rare employee, under the pseudonym of Transparentjinjo, posted gameplay footage of the game on YouTube. According to the video's title, the build was dated "September 7, 2001".
On January 14, 2013, this prototype build was released online.
Diddy Kong Pilot featured six modes: Racing, Stories, Dog Fights, Battle, Clock Race, and Options. The build is largely unfinished as most of the stages are nearly empty, some only having a backdrop and a few assets laid out on the stage. Many of the modes, such as Dog Fights, are non-functional. The gameplay essentially only consists of flying around on a course. Some features were never implemented such as plane customization, or unlockable characters, stories, and stages.
Upon starting up the game, the player is instantly led onto a debug menu, and it has three options: Level, Player, and Blend. The first option allows them to choose a course, and the second one allows them to select a character (Cranky). The "level" options include:
|Beach 00||Beach 01||Beach 02||Beach 03|
|Lava 00||Lava 01||Lava 02|
|Snow 00||Snow 01||Snow 02||Snow 03|
|Keep 00||Keep 01||Keep 02||Keep 03|
|Lake 00||Lake 01||Lake 02||Lake 03|
|Farm 00||Farm 01||Farm 02||Farm 03||Farm 04||Farm 051|
|Haunted 00||Haunted 01||Haunted 02||Haunted 03|
|Jungle 00||Jungle 01||Jungle 02||Jungle 03|
|Swamp 00||Swamp 01||Swamp 02||Swamp 03|
|Desert 00||Desert 01||Desert 02||Desert 03|
1 - Inaccessible from debug
The second option, "Player" has six numerical values, labeled 0-5. Each of them represent a playable character:
- 0: Cranky Kong
- 1: Diddy Kong
- 2: Krunch
- 3: K. Rool
- 4: Dixie Kong
- 5: Donkey Kong (selecting him results in playing as Cranky Kong instead)
- 6: Diddy Kong instead of Candy Kong (only selectable by using cheats;2 same function as when selecting Dixie in the character select)
- 7-11: No data (only selectable by using cheats;2 Krunch, K. Rool, Dixie, Cranky, Diddy in order)
2 - Apply 020000DC:0X in code; 0 to B (hexadecimal)
The last option, Blend, does not have any apparent function. It has four options: Off, Alpha, Up, and Down.
The player can exiting to the main menu by opening the pause menu. It has three options which are self-explanatory: Continue, Restart, and Quit. Few of the further developed courses also redirect the player to the main menu after they complete all three laps.
The main menu has six modes: Racing, Stories, Dog Fights, Battle, Clock Race, and Options. It is also the only part of the game to have a music track.
Before starting a mode, the player must select a character. The selection menu is very buggy, and choosing a character causes a different one to be playable, except for Cranky Kong. For instance, selecting Diddy Kong causes Krunch to be playable instead. The sound that each character makes when highlighted does not correspond to the correct character as well. When a character is highlighted, they are not aligned with their sepia shadow; additionally, the sepia backdrop has Candy Kong but highlighting her shows Redneck Kong instead, meaning the color character select screen had not been edited yet; Cranky Kong's pose is different as well. The following "Select World" menu shows the character that will actually be played as, with the exception of when Dixie is selected. In this case, a glitchy black rectangle taking up the entirety of the character sprites' parameters will be shown, and playing will result in Diddy appearing. As such, the rectangle is likely the remains of Redneck Kong's data.
The Racing mode allows the player to select a world, each with an associated level difficulty. Unlike its predecessor, Diddy Kong Pilot only features four characters racing on a course at a time; the main goal remains the same: racing three laps around a course and getting first place. Many of the core features are similar to Diddy Kong Racing, for instance how the player can collect bananas and pick up an item from item balloons appearing around the course. Zippers also return in the courses, and they give racers a speed boost.
The Stories mode has three out of seven different stories: King of Kongs (Diddy Kong), Back to the Light (Dixie Kong), and K. Rool's Gold (K. Rool). This mode is almost entirely nonfunctional, but it was intended to have a unique story for a certain character and a final boss at the end. This build seemed to be in the process of removing Stories mode, since K. Rool's Gold did not work in this build but did in the very early build.
The Dogfight mode features players fighting against each other. There are four options and none can be accessed: Classic Dogfight, a Dawn Duel, a Classic Variation, or a Focal Feud.
The Battle mode was planned to be a multiplayer mode, and its icon shows a crate containing miscellaneous objects. Another version has a different icon showing four original Game Boy Advance units hooked to each other via a Link Cable.
The Clock Race mode was presumably planned as the Time Trials mode. It has little to no difference from the Racing mode, but it allows the player to easily select a stage, similar to the debug menu. Unlike the debug menu, most of the stages crash in this option.
The Options mode is untouched from E3 2001, retaining the same background graphics as the E3 2001 character selection screen. It only gives the option to use either D-Pad or tilt control to steer the plane. This was completely scrapped in October 2001.
- or : Move in the desired direction.
- : Acceleration
- : Use weapon
- or : Tilt at a sharper angle
- or (twice): aerial roll
- and Down (twice while accelerating): U-turn
- : Pause the game
The character selection menu is highly incomplete, as highlighting a character would trigger a sound effect from an unrelated character. The game was planned to include more than seven characters. Selecting a character causes the game to choose an entirely different character instead. Redneck Kong was playable in earlier builds, such as E3 2001, and was a very short-lived idea from the designer of the project. He was replaced by Candy Kong in a later build. Despite her appearing on the character selection screen, she was not implemented in the September 7, 2001 build. She also appeared on the main menu, in the "Dog Fights" animated icon and battle mode portrait.
Kamikaze K. Rool
|Unimplemented; replacement of the removed Redneck Kong|
|Only by using cheats|
|Voice played as||Character played as|
|Cranky Kong (0)
|Cranky Kong||Cranky Kong (0)|
|Diddy Kong||Diddy Kong (1)|
|Diddy Kong (1)||Donkey Kong||Krunch (2)|
|Donkey Kong (5)||Krunch||K. Rool (3)|
|Krash (2)||K. Rool||Dixie Kong (4)|
|K. Rool (3)||Dixie Kong||Donkey Kong (5) → Cranky Kong (0)|
|Dixie Kong (4)
|Diddy Kong (when highlighted) → Cranky Kong cursor||Corrupted (6) → Diddy Kong (1)|
|Unimplemented (7)||Diddy Kong cursor||Corrupted (7) → Krunch (2)|
|Unimplemented (8)||Donkey Kong cursor → Krunch cursor||Corrupted (8) → K. Rool (3)|
|Unimplemented (9)||Krunch cursor → K. Rool cursor||Corrupted (9) → Dixie Kong (4)|
|Unimplemented (10)||K. Rool cursor → Dixie Kong cursor||Corrupted (10) → Cranky Kong (0)|
|Unimplemented (11)||Dixie Kong cursor → Donkey Kong cursor||Corrupted (11) → Diddy Kong (1)|
- Status unknown
- Funky Kong (none of his data except the Space World 2000 remains)
Most of the items reappeared from Diddy Kong Racing except for peanuts, watermelons, and eggs. The player can carry up to a few items at a time. Most of the items can be obtained from sky blue-colored item balloons with a yellow question mark on them. Item balloons also have a green and DK variant, and both have unfinished functionality. Both provide an item, either with an icon of Cranky or Diddy, and neither are functional.
There is also a chained barrel item, but it goes unimplemented in the September 2001 build of Diddy Kong Pilot. There is also an unimplemented yellow single rocket boost item.
The game was planned to feature 24 tracks, with four in each of the six worlds. Only five of the courses can be selected from the Clock Race menu, and they are marked in bold.
The game was planned to feature 36 dogfight and battle levels. Only "Hair Raising Rescue" is playable in September 7, 2001 build, where the player has to catch ghosts and move them to a pond. There are 41 coffins on that map.
Wasteland Wipe Out
Differences between builds
Very early build
Mario characters would have originally made an appearance. While the idea had already been scrapped at E3 2001 in development, the graphics still remain in the ROM. The playable characters included:
- Cranky Kong
- Diddy Kong
- Dixie Kong
- Funky Kong
- Donkey Kong
- K. Rool
- Princess Peach
K. Rool's Gold
K. Rool's Gold was a functional story in the build. It is inaccessible in the September 2001 build, although its graphics and story remain inside of the ROM:
- Nikiki (red)
- Nakaka (green)
- Nukuku (blue)
- Nokoko (yellow)
- A tilt option was present in the Debug menu.
- Dog Fights had a different menu.
E3 2001 build
- Redneck Kong was a playable character.
Character select screen
- The background had less colors and was brighter. In the latest build, it was instead used for the Options menu.
- The sepia background graphic of the characters was different:
- Cranky Kong's pose is slightly different.
- Redneck Kong is shown instead of Candy Kong.
- Dixie Kong does not have two curly hairs on the left side.
- Krunch's toenails are smaller.
- K. Rool's goggle outfit is smaller.
- A highlighted character on the menu aligns with their sepia background, as this was before it was in the process of being redesigned.
- The item box had a different shape and contents, being rectangular-shaped instead of square.
- The flame is yellow instead of orange in the lava course.
- The boundary is orange instead of blue.
Spaceworld 2001 build
- The current lap number is shown in between the course icon.
- For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Diddy Kong Pilot (2001).
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Title screen theme||File info|
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Beach race course theme (unused)||File info|
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Snow race course theme (unused)||File info|
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Lava race course theme (unused)||File info|
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Bayou race course theme (unused)||File info|
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Haunted race course theme (unused)||File info|
| Diddy Kong Pilot - Castle race course theme (unused)||File info|
Names in other languages
Didī Kongu Pairotto (KASHŌ)
|Diddy Kong Pilot (tentative)|
- The background of the Stories menu has two photographs resembling official Diddy Kong Racing artwork. One of them shows Diddy flying over a plains with a few windmills while the other one shows Diddy flying away from Wizpig.
- The map of Magma Mainland would be reused in Banjo-Pilot as the lower background layer of the dogfight against Bottles in the Feather Cup, but the track itself cannot be raced on. Differences include: a darker layer consisting of both the lava and the track; a big hole in the center; the removal of the finish line and boosts; and the removal of the cracks in the center island.
- When waiting for 30 seconds in the main menu, a gameplay demo is shown. It takes place in one of five courses: Bounty Beach, Magma Mainland, Chicken Chase, Frosty Lake and Whisper Woods, which are the most developed compared to the other courses. Either Diddy Kong, Krunch, K. Rool, Dixie Kong, or Cranky Kong are selected as the playable character for the demo.
- ^ Space World 2001 trailer (YouTube)
- ^ a b c Nintendo's New Release Dates - Nintendo World Report
- ^ Space World 2001 trailer (YouTube)
- ^ a b c DK Vine
- ^ http://nintendoeverything.com/diddy-kong-pilot-screenshots-videos-details-and-more/
- ^ "4. Oh, let's see... Since Diddy Kong Pilot is scheduled to come out by year's end, maybe the release is close enough to merit a response to this... who's the hillbilly Kong from the character select screen? Can we at least have a name?
4) Don't worry about it - he's been killed off now anyway."
September 3, 2001 edition of Scribes on Rareware
- ^ Jens Christian Restemeier - MobyGames profile
- ^ Unseen64
- ^ a b "Diddy Kong Pilot - Very Early Beta Spaceworld" on YouTube
- ^ Nintendo Space World 2001 Official Guidebook
- ^ Polly's Archive (December 19, 2022). G-Force Magazine - DVD 1 - English - May 2002. YouTube. Retrieved January 14, 2023.
- ^ Changes to Rare's Website
- ^ Niconico reupload
- ^ NeoGAF thread
- ^ Diddy Kong Pilot Alpha 2001 (ROM release right here!)
- ^ Rareware.com (Wayback Machine)
- ^ Nintendo Power #145, page 15
- ^ New Tidbits on Various Rare Titles - Nintendo World Report
- ^ Diddy Kong Pilot Nintendo Retrospective
- ^ a b https://web.archive.org/web/20120102053341/http://www.rarewarecentral.com/diddy-kong-pilot
- ^ IGN
- ^ DKC Atlas thread
- ^ Jul - The Cutting Room Floor - Diddy Kong Pilot
- ^ A screenshot of Krunch racing in Frosty Lake
- Nintendo of America E3 2001 page (Wayback Machine)
- Nintendo of Japan Space World 2001 page (Wayback Machine)
|Diddy Kong Pilot (2001)|
|Characters||Diddy Kong • Candy Kong • Cranky Kong • Dixie Kong • Donkey Kong • King K. Rool • Krunch|
|Worlds||Sleepy Shores • Kongo Kingdom • Western Wastes • Island of Eggs • Polar Plateau|
|Tracks||Bounty Beach • Whisper Woods • Magma Mainland • Chicken Chase • Frosty Lake|
|Challenge levels||Hatch Match • Ghost Grasp • Swamp Showdown • Wasteland Wipe Out|
|Other||Gallery • Vaporware|
|Donkey Kong games by Rare|
|Donkey Kong Country series||Donkey Kong Country (1994) • Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest (1995) • Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! (1996)|
|Donkey Kong Land series||Donkey Kong Land (1995) • Donkey Kong Land 2 (1996) • Donkey Kong Land III (1997)|
|Diddy Kong Racing series||Diddy Kong Racing (1997) • Diddy Kong Pilot (canceled) • Donkey Kong Racing (canceled)|
|Other||Donkey Kong 64 (1999) • Donkey Kong Coconut Crackers (canceled)|
|Reissues||Donkey Kong Country (Game Boy Color) (2000) • Donkey Kong Country (Game Boy Advance) (2003) • Donkey Kong Country 2 (Game Boy Advance) (2004) • Donkey Kong Country 3 (Game Boy Advance) (2005) • Diddy Kong Racing DS (2007)|
|Game Boy Advance games|
|Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge • Banjo-Pilot • Battletoads* • Diddy Kong Pilot (2001/2003)* • Donkey Kong Coconut Crackers* • Donkey Kong Country • Donkey Kong Country 2 • Donkey Kong Country 3 • It's Mr. Pants • Sabre Wulf|
|Titles marked with an asterisk (*) were canceled or reworked into a different title|