Fans of competitive retro gaming, listen up, as the results of the first round of the Donkey Kong, Kong Off #3, Wild Card Qualifier #1, are in. They saw a couple of people break the million point barrier and an amazing number of people hitting the Kill Screen, but who has the best chance of making it to the real competition later this year?
First though, it's best to explain the way the Kong Off will work this year and what the Wildcard matches are all about. The Kong Off, sees the best Donkey Kong (original 1981 arcade version) players in the world, competing head to head to see who's the best on the day. To enter, they'll need to beat their way through the live qualifying event on 15th of November – or enter one of the online qualifiers, as part of the Wildcard division.
Traditionally, the Wildcard side of Donkey Kong was reserved for those that hadn't already proved themselves capable of garnering over 1,000,000 points in the game, but this year it's to allow people from all over the world to compete, not just those that live near the hosting 1Up arcade.
While only eight of those out of the three qualifying competitions will progress to the first round of the live tournament, here's the top three from this event:
Dean Saglio: 1,087,500
Phil Tudose: 1,051,600
Jeff Wolfe: 997,800
Each of those men wins a small monetary prize for their efforts and they all stand a good chance of making it to the Kong Off 3 later this year.
But how do they stack up against the best of the best? Chances are, if these guys make it to the Kong Off 3, they'll be facing off against some of the biggest names in the game. Current world record holder Hank Chien is expected to attend, along with Vincent Lemay, the man hot on Chien's heels. Fan favourite Steve Wiebe is also expected to show up, though no word on whether video gaming's lovable bad guy, Billy Mitchell will make an appearance.
Currently the top three world rankings for Donkey Kong are:
Hank Chien: 1,138,600
Vincent Lemay: 1,135,900
Jeff Willms: 1,105,400
The top 10 rankings for this game are all over a million points, though traditionally Kong Offs – being heated competition – don't tend to produce world record scores.
While the hero of documentary/movie King of Kong, Steve Wiebe, hasn't been in the top of the table (or even in the top five) for the past few years, he did recently reignite speculation about how he would do in the next Kong Off by putting up the following image on his Facebook page:
How will he do? Who knows. Wiebe has fallen behind the curve a bit in recent times, though he's still capable of pumping out kill screens if he wishes, as was evidenced at a recent comicon.
KitGuru Says: You know when you think you're getting good at something and someone else just makes you feel totally inadequate? That's what it's like writing this news piece. My own personal best is 77,000 and I can pull around 8,000 points on level 1 when I'm lucky. Do you know the record for 1-1 is 13,600 points? For god's sake.