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Donkey Kong (SSBB)

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This article is about Donkey Kong's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. For the character in other contexts, see Donkey Kong.
Donkey Kong
in Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Donkey Kong SSBB.jpg
Symbol of the DK series.
Universe Donkey Kong
Other playable appearances in SSB
in Melee
in SSB4
in Ultimate
Availability Starter
Final Smash Konga Beat
Tier D (21)

Donkey Kong (ドンキーコング, Donkey Kong) is a character in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. He was first shown very briefly at the E3 2007 press conference. Rather than utilizing the recycled animal sounds from Super Smash Bros. Melee or being voiced by Grant Kirkhope or Takashi Nagasako (who voiced Donkey Kong starting with Mario Power Tennis), Donkey Kong now uses modified tiger sounds sourced from the The Best of Saul Zaents Film Center CD included with Sound Ideas' Amadeus Sound Library.

Donkey Kong is currently ranked 21st out of 38 on the tier list in the Mid tier. This is an improvement over his ranking in Melee, where he is ranked 16th out of 26 in the lower mid tier. Donkey Kong possesses a combination of incredible power with many great finishers (especially in his smash attacks), and incredible reach in his attacks. Along with this power and reach combination, Donkey Kong possesses above average movement with remarkably good mobility for a character of his size, and many fast attacks (such as his back aerial and tilts). Additionally, Donkey Kong possesses by far the greatest horizontal endurance with his great weight and Spinning Kong momentum cancelling, as well as one of the strongest vertical endurances, and a recovery that gains great horizontal distance while protecting Donkey Kong, making Donkey Kong one of the hardest characters to KO. Donkey Kong's incredible weight is a double-edged sword, however; while it makes him incredibly difficult to KO, it also makes him incredibly easy to combo, juggle, and chain throw, including making him vulnerable to infinite and zero to death chain throws (most notoriously from King Dedede). Additional problems of Donkey Kong include most of his attacks having heavy ending lag (making it easy to punish most of his attacks if he misses), being very vulnerable to meteor smash gimps due to his recovery gaining much less vertical distance, his shield being too small for a character of his size leaving him heavily vulnerable to shield stabbing, and lacking a projectile, which when combined with his very large size and aforementioned shield issues, gives Donkey Kong severe issues dealing with camping. While his rolls and air dodge are about average, his sidestep is the second slowest, after Bowser. Overall, Donkey Kong has decidedly poor matchups while being countered by the majority of top and high tier (and is also hard countered by two, but Donkey Kong also hard counters three), and has achieved average tournament results.


Donkey Kong is a very heavy character with very powerful attacks, great attack range, and high knockback capabilities. Despite these pros, Donkey Kong lacks projectiles and a reliable way to deal with them, which makes his moveset and style of approach unvaried. He is one of the fastest heavyweight characters; his movement speed is above average: fast running, fast walking, fast air speed, and very high initial jump. Donkey Kong's weight helps him stay alive longer, though he is a big target and has very poor vertical recovery, but extremely long horizontal recovery. He can even use Spinning Kong to momentum cancel knockback from an attack that would even KO Bowser, Snake, or King Dedede. Despite his extremely long horizontal recovery, it is vulnerable to disjointed attacks and has poor vertical height which means even weak meteor smashes can be devastating, though it's hard to edge guard without a disjointed attack due its initial invincibility frames. Combining his impressive weight and good horizontal recovery with good directional influence, he will be extremely hard to KO.

Although he can take a lot of damage before being KOed, he gets hit very easily due to his large size, which is not helped by the fact that he has a tie hurtbox. His large size and heavy weight also leaves him open to many chain grabs (e.g. King Dedede's infinite chain grab without a wall, which is truly problematic at such a high level), except Bowser's ground releases. Though given his attack range and speed, it can be difficult for characters with short-ranged grabs like the Ice Climbers to grab him to begin with. His Headbutt attack allows him to get a free attack on the opponent, as many of his follow-up attacks have low startup time, and it also does very high damage to shields. His fully charged Giant Punch also heavily damages shields, and the armor it grants may allow him to trade KO moves with an opponent and survive. Even his grounded Spinning Kong does high damage to opponents or shields. Having three high shield damage attacks he can give high shield pressure. Donkey Kong has numerous KO options and no problems doing so: all his smashes are powerful, with his up & down smashes coming out very fast; up aerial can compensate for a missed edge-guard, three reliable meteor smashes, back aerial & throw, Giant Punch (10 charges is actually more powerful than fully charged, but doesn't have armor) and the cargo stage spike.

He can counter any ground grab releases because of his unique extremely short grab release animation, making him escape from release lag 10 frames earlier than any other character does and being immune to Bowser's grab release game with the addition of only Snake and Yoshi being able to force him to jump break from grabs. Donkey Kong is unique to be able to carry crates, barrels and Bonsly without a reduction in speed, but small items have an unusually long end animation (though he has one of the best Glide Tosses in the game). DK also has a large grab range with powerful throws, and he is even able to chain-grab some characters. DK can infinite-Cargo release Lucas and Ness, and he can KO characters in low damage percentages when using the Cargo stage-spike. Donkey Kong can also perform Kongocide, although it's not the most useful of the sacrificial KOs. Although Donkey Kong has his share of problems, he fares decently against the majority of the cast, and there are very few problems he can't overcome.

Changes from Super Smash Bros. Melee[edit]

In the transition from Melee to Brawl, Donkey Kong was heavily buffed overall. He has been improved in several aspects, including his mobility, endurance potential, power, recovery, and range.

One noticeable nerf he received was to his grounded Spinning Kong. The hitbox grounded Spinning Kong once possessed which came out on frame 2-5, had invincibility and could kill opponents under 100% was completely removed, hindering grounded Spinning Kong's utility (although he does now have the "Invincicopter" to give his grounded Spinning Kong some new utility). Besides the change to his grounded Spinning Kong, Donkey Kong did not receive any other significant nerfs to his moveset.

Overall, DK is a stronger character than he was in Melee although he still struggles against much of the cast.


  • Change Like all characters, Donkey Kong has received a massive boost in quality, having brighter and more detailed fur. In addition, he gains his current appearance from Mario Party 4 onward.
  • Change Like Bowser & King Dedede, the screen now visually shakes whenever Donkey Kong lands onto the ground.
  • Change Donkey Kong has received new voice clips, though there are still stock sound effects.
  • Change Donkey Kong no longer uses his stun voice clip when waking out of sleep status.
  • Change Donkey Kong has a new white costume with a red tie. His black costume now has a yellow tie instead of a blue tie, and his blue costume now has a pink tie instead of a purple one.
  • Change Another carrorober from his current appearance, Donkey Kong's teeth are yellow-ish white instead of white.


  • Buff Donkey Kong's shield size was increased (although it is still very small for his size).
  • Buff The introduction of buffering has made it easier for Donkey Kong to punish his opponents after they grounded grab release him despite his animation being one frame longer.
  • Nerf The changes to aerial grab releases hinders Donkey Kong as it makes him more susceptible to followups as he travels in an unfavourable arc. While DK usually cannot be forced air released on the ground, DK himself lacks air release followups on most characters including Squirtle and Meta Knight due to his only above average mobility combined with his poor grab release animation, dash attack, dash grab, lack of a fast forward hitting aerial and his ineffective DACUS.
  • Buff Donkey Kong's dashing speed is slightly faster (1.6 → 1.622).
  • Buff Donkey Kong's air speed is faster (1 → 1.081).
  • Buff Donkey Kong's air acceleration is higher (0.04 → 0.06).
  • Change Donkey Kong is slightly heavier (114 → 116).
  • Change As with the returning veterans, Donkey Kong's falling speed was reduced (2.4 → 1.58). Compared to the returning veterans, however, Donkey Kong falls slightly slower. While worsening his endurance, it slightly improves his poor vertical recovery and makes him harder to combo. However, Donkey Kong is still one of the easier characters to combo on and his vertical recovery is still very poor.
  • Change Donkey Kong's gravity is lower (0.1 → 0.081).
  • Nerf Donkey Kong's traction is lower (0.08 → 0.0529), especially when comparing with the returning veterans, now going from the 7th highest in Melee to only the 28th highest. This makes it harder for him to punish out of shield.
  • Buff Spot dodge has less ending lag (FAF 37 → 30) although it is still one of the longest spot dodges in the game.
  • Buff Donkey Kong's forward glide toss covers much more distance.

Ground attacks[edit]

  • Neutral attack:
    • Buff The second hit has increased base knockback (0 → 40). The first hit has a new hitbox which launches opponents towards Donkey Kong (361° → 140°) improving its range and jab canceling potential.
    • Nerf The second hit has more startup lag with a shorter duration (frames 5-11 → 6-11).
  • Forward tilt:
    • Buff Forward tilt now grants intangibility to DK's arm.
    • Buff The up angled variant deals more damage (11% → 12%), giving Donkey Kong another quick KO move under 150%.
    • Buff The down angled variant has a 15% chance to trip opponents.
  • Up tilt:
    • Buff Up tilt has less startup lag and a longer duration (frames 6-11 → 5-11). It also has slightly less ending lag (FAF 40 → 39).
    • Buff It now grants intangibility to DK's arm.
  • Down tilt:
    • Buff Down tilt deals more damage (7% → 8%).
    • Buff It now has a 40% chance to trip opponents.
  • Dash attack:
    • Buff DK now vocalizes during the first frame of his dash attack. While this may seem insignificant, it allows him to mix his opponents up with a dash attack, a boost grab or a DACUS to throw his opponents off.
    • Change Its clean hit now launches opponents at a different trajectory (100° → 50°), with its knockback also altered (115 (base), 15 (scaling) → 100/20)).
  • Forward smash:
    • Buff Forward smash's sweetspots have increased base knockback (22 → 30). Its hitbox sizes has also been increased (4.8u/5.6u/3.408u/2.4u → 6.4u/6.8u/4.3u/3u).
    • Nerf Its hitlag multiplier has been significantly increased (1.0x → 1.4x), making it somewhat safer on shield, but easier to SDI, especially consider the increased hitlag overall from Melee to Brawl. The opponent can also SDI his forward smash to lessen its knockback, despite it being increased from Melee.
  • Up smash:
    • Buff The universally decreased falling speeds and the slightly altered knockback formula have improved up smash's KO potential. It can also hit grounded opponents much easier as its hitbox size has been increased (7u → 9.5u) and it has less ending lag (FAF 54 → 50).
  • Down smash:
    • Buff Down smash's sweetspot deals more damage (16% → 17%).
    • Buff Its hitboxes lasts a slightly longer duration (4 frames → 5) and its size has been significantly increased (4.8u/3.6u → 7u/4.5u).

Aerial attacks[edit]

  • Neutral aerial:
    • Buff Neutral aerial has less landing lag (20 frames → 15) and can now auto-cancel in a short hop due to DK's slower falling speed/gravity. It also has increased base knockback (0 → 20 (clean), 10 (late)) improving the clean hit's KO potential.
    • Nerf It deals less damage (12% → 11% (clean), 10% → 8% (late)).
  • Forward aerial:
    • Buff Forward aerial's sweetspot deals increased knockback growth (80 → 85) and can trip opponents if they don't take enough knockback to leave the ground. It's also superior for edgeguarding due to the meteor cancel changes and and being much safer to use offstage due to DK's slower falling speed/gravity.
    • Nerf Its late hit has received a sourspot that launches at the Sakurai angle and deals less base knockback (50 → 30).
  • Back aerial:
    • Buff Back aerial can now be performed twice in a single short hop. It also has increased base knockback (10 → 20 (clean), 0 → 10 (late)), a longer duration (frames 7-15 → 7-16) and slightly more range. It also greatly benefits from the introduction of reverse aerial rush significantly improving its approach potential.
    • Nerf Its late hit deals slightly less damage (9% → 8%).
    • Nerf It autocancels later (frame 20 → 31).
  • Up aerial:
    • Buff Up aerial has a longer duration (frames 6-8 → 6-9) and less landing lag (25 frames → 22). The universally decreased falling speeds also improves its KO potential.
    • Nerf It autocancels later (frame 13 → 26).
  • Down aerial:
    • Buff Down aerial's sweetspot can trip opponents if they don't take enough knockback to leave the ground. It's also superior for edgeguarding due to the meteor cancel changes and being much safer to use offstage due to DK's slower falling speed/gravity.

Throws/other attacks[edit]

  • Grabs:
    • Buff Standing grab has slightly less ending lag (FAF 31 → 30).
    • Buff Grab range is higher, going from below-average in Melee to being the 4th longest reaching non-tether grab in Brawl.
    • Nerf Dash grab has more ending lag (FAF 41 → 50).
  • Pummel:
    • Buff Pummel is faster (24 frames → 15) and still deals 3%.
  • Forward throw:
    • Buff Donkey Kong gains armor when carrying an opponent when using Cargo throw (Kong Karry).
    • Buff Donkey Kong no longer takes damage if an opponent breaks free from his forward throw. Additionally, he can now perform an infinite on Ness and Lucas if they break out of his cargo throw due to their longer grounded grab release animations.
    • Buff Cargo forward throw launches opponents at a higher angle (55° → 60°).
    • Buff Donkey Kong's lowered falling speed combined with an improved vertical recovery makes it much safer to stage spike an opponent with the cargo back and down throws.
    • Nerf An opponent takes 4% less damage if they break free from Donkey Kong's forward throw (10% → 6%).
    • Nerf The changes to Brawl's physics have removed up throw's chaingrabbing and combo potential significantly reducing its utility. Cargo throw also has less combo potential because of this.
  • Down throw:
    • Buff The removal of DI against moves which don't put opponents into tumble makes down throw more reliable for chaingrabs despite its higher knockback scaling (45 → 50).
  • Edge attack:
    • Buff Edge attacks have increased intangibility (frames 1-5 → 1-7 (fast), frames 1-34 → 1-41 (slow)) and larger hitboxes (8u → 9.6u (fast), 6.4u/3.2u/3.2u → 7.5u/6u/4u/4u (slow)).
    • Nerf Slow edge attack has more startup lag with a shorter duration (frames 37-50 → 38-41).

Special moves[edit]

  • Giant Punch:
    • Buff Giant Punch now has armor when fully charged, it charges faster and it can now be reversed, but reversing it does not increase damage or knockback, unlike Falcon Punch and Warlock Punch. The back hit additionally has more KO potential due to the universally decreased falling speeds with a level 10 back hit being able to KO King Dedede on Final Destination at 50%.
    • Nerf All variants of the grounded front hit deals 2% less damage (12%-30% → 10%-28%) and the fully charged version for both variants has less knockback scaling (90 → 80) hindering its KO potential and further encouraging Donkey Kong to use a level 10 Giant Punch. Additionally, the aerial variant deals less damage (12% → 8% (back uncharged), 6% (front uncharged), 17%/26% → 15%/25% (fully charged). Lastly, all variants of the front hit have a sourspot which has less knockback scaling (100/90 → 60/50).
    • Nerf It has increased landing lag (7 frames → 30) due to Donkey Kong now having a landing animation while landing while helpless.
    • Change A fully charged Giant Punch no longer has invincibility frames on frames 17-18, although this is compensated with super armor on frames 17-20.
  • Headbutt:
    • Buff Headbutt is faster, deals more damage when on the ground and in the air (5% → 10%/8% (grounded), 10% → 14%/8% (aerial)) although its knockback was compensated (0 (base), 100 (scaling) → 20/40 (grounded), 30/40 (aerial)), and DK can now also bury his opponents while he is in midair. Since buried characters now can receive knockback when buried, Headbutt can now combo more easily into Giant Punch or other attacks. It can also be used as an inferior version of Mario's cape glide, giving DK another edgeguarding option. Its meteor hitbox is also easier to land.
    • Change Donkey Kong no longer vocalizes when using Headbutt.
  • Spinning Kong:
    • Buff Spinning Kong goes slightly farther, both horizontally and vertically. It can also be used to completely negate all momentum due to the introduction of momentum canceling, and the grounded version has super armor. The aerial version also deals 3% more damage (33% → 36%).
      • Buff In addition to momentum canceling, Spinning Kong is also completely immune to the "pushing effect" of attacks such as wind or water.
    • Buff DK now has access to the "Invincicopter" allowing him to use grounded Spinning Kong while being completely invincible.
    • Change Grounded Spinning Kong's loop hitboxes deal less damage (8% → 4-5%) and knockback reducing their damage output but making them connect more reliably.
    • Nerf The grounded version of Spinning Kong no longer has an initial hit with invincibility. This significantly hinders its KO potential as the new first hit comes out much slower (frame 2 → 19) and is significantly weaker dealing less damage (12% → 4/5%) and knockback (60 (base), 100 (scaling) → 50/70) and is incapable of killing opponents until beyond sudden death percents removing one of DK's best kill options. The aerial version also has more startup lag (frame 3 → 4) also meaning that he gains invincibility slightly later.
    • Nerf It has increased landing lag (7 frames → 40) due to Donkey Kong now having a landing animation while landing while helpless.
  • Hand Slap:
    • Buff Hand Slap does 3% more damage (11% → 14%) and has longer range (9.216u/9.216u/9.216u/9.216u/10.24u/10.24u/10.24u/10.24u → 13u/13u/13u/13u/13u/13u/13u/13u). It also has high base knockback and low knockback scaling, rather than set knockback (20/30 (base), 100 (scaling), 110 (set) → 82/23).
  • Konga Beat:
    • Change Donkey Kong has received a Final Smash, Konga Beat. Donkey Kong takes out the DK Bongos and plays them to the beat of "DK Island Swing", which emits shockwaves in the process. Pressing the attack button to the beat increases the size and damage of the shockwaves.


For a visual representation of Donkey Kong's attack hitboxes, see this page.
For a more detailed information regarding Donkey Kong's moveset and attack hitboxes, see this page.

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack   4% Donkey Kong performs a quick cross punch followed by an uppercut. The tip of the first punch's hitbox will knock targets towards Donkey Kong instead of away, which can lead into a grab.
Forward tilt   12% Donkey Kong quickly swats his outstretched hand. Donkey Kong's arm is intangible while the hitboxes are out, allowing it to be used safely against most other attacks. This can be aimed up or down. KOs at 148% when angled up from the center of Final Destination.
Up tilt   9% (hand), 10% (elbow), 11% (arm) Donkey Kong quickly swipes his hand in the air. Fast with a good arch range. Again, DK's arm cannot be injured while the hitboxes are out. The arm hitbox KOs at roughly 110%.
Down tilt Slouch Slap (ロースラップ, Low Slap) 8% Donkey Kong quickly swats towards the opponents feet. A great lock move at low percentages and a trip can be comboed with his Hand Slap.
Dash attack   11% (clean), 9% (late) Donkey Kong skids to a halt doing a side-kick. High ending lag and poor shieldstun.
Forward smash   20% (fingers), 21% (hands), 19% (arms), 18% (body) Donkey Kong performs a very forceful clap. One of the strongest forward smashes in the game, KOing at 70% when uncharged and 37% when fully charged.
Up smash   18% Donkey Kong claps hands above his head. Good for hitting from below a platform and a great running up smash. Both DK's arms and head cannot be hit during the middle of the attack. KOs Mario at 74% when uncharged and 43% when fully charged from the platforms on Battlefield.
Down smash   17% (hands), 14% (arms) Does a double back-handed punch by bringing his closed fists down 90˚ at both sides. Very fast, great vertical knockback and is the 3rd strongest down smash in the game, KOing at 91% when uncharged and 57% when fully charged.
Neutral aerial   11% (clean), 8% (late) Donkey Kong quickly spins with arms extended. Similar to the Spinning Kong, but much faster to execute. KOs middleweights at around 150% from the center of Final Destination.
Forward aerial   16% Donkey Kong puts his fists together above his head, and then does a powerful ax-handle smash, which at KO at 159% if hit with the sweetspot and grounded from the center of Final Destination, and 97% from the center of Battlefield without the sweetspot. A powerful meteor smash when sweet spotted, which also causes a significant hitlag increase. Great for catching edge guarders while recovering. Resembles his midair attack from Donkey Kong 64.
Back aerial   13% (clean), 8% (late) Donkey Kong performs a quick kick directed behind him that lingers briefly. Very fast, long ranged and strong, is an effective wall of pain. KOs Mario at 126% from the center of Final Destination.
Up aerial   14% Donkey Kong performs a quick headbutt upwards. Extremely quick, can be used to juggle at low percentages and star KO at 113% from the platforms on Battlefield.
Down aerial   16% (foot), 13% (body) Donkey Kong performs a downward stomp whilst holding his arms up in a macho pose. Always treated as a meteor smash when it hits. KOs at 141% when grounded from the center of Final Destination.
Pummel   3% Does a slight karate chop at the enemy's neck. A fairly fast pummel.
Forward throw Kong Karry (リフティング, Lifting) 6% (breakout), 8% (forward & back throw), 7% (up throw), 6% (down throw) Regardless of the opponent's size, DK heaves the opponent onto his back, just like carrying a crate or a barrel. Can be released and regrabbed if he can react quicker, being an infinite on Lucas and Ness when turn releasing and turn grabbing. Both players gain knockback-based armor, similar to Yoshi's double jump.
Back throw   11% Swings his arm back and throws the opponent. A very good KO throw with fast start-up.
Up throw   9% Swings his arm back and throws the opponent upwards.
Down throw   7% Slams the opponent into the ground with his hand. Can chain grab characters like Snake, Kirby, Squirtle, Charizard, King Dedede and much more.
Floor attack (front)   6% Gets up and swats both sides of himself.
Floor attack (back)   6% Gets up and claps once both sides of himself.
Floor attack (trip)   5% Does a wind-up spin around the floor.
Edge attack (fast)   8% Throws his rear at the opponent. Good range for an edge attack.
Edge attack (slow)   10% Climbs onto the stage and swats forward.
Neutral special Giant Punch Ground: 12% (uncharged elbow), 10% (uncharged punch), 18% (fully charged elbow & body), 28% (fully charged punch)
Air: 8% (uncharged elbow), 6% (uncharged punch), 15% (fully charged elbow), 20% (fully charged body), 28% (fully charged punch)
Donkey Kong winds up and thrusts out his arm as a potentially powerful attack, which can KO at 67% from the center of Final Destination when fully charged. The attack is at fully charged after eleven windups and gains armor right before DK unleashes the punch. A punch just under full charge (ten windups) deals more knockback but lacks armor. The punch can be saved and chosen when to be released after being fully charged.
Side special Headbutt Ground: 10% (grounded), 8% (air)
Air: 14% (sweetspot), 8% (sourspot)
Donkey Kong slams his head downward. When performed on the ground, the opponent is buried and will remain submerged longer if the opponent has already taken a fair amount of damage. When performed in the air, the struck opponent is meteor smashed if hit by the sweetspot. Can be used to "stall" Donkey Kong in the air.
Up special Spinning Kong Ground: 5-4% (loop early), 3% (loop late), 4% (final hit)
Air: 10% (startup), 5-4% (loop early), 2% (loop late)
Donkey Kong spins around with his arms extended. Has armor on the ground and arms are intangible in the air.
Down special Hand Slap 14% Donkey Kong repeatedly slaps his hands against the ground, causing earth-shaking vibrations in the process. The attack gives him some protection from opponents while grounded due to its good range, but cannot hit airborne opponents. This move cannot be used in the air and will be interrupted if Donkey Kong becomes airborne while using the move.
Final Smash Konga Beat Varies Donkey Kong takes out a pair of bongos and begin to play them to the beat of "DK Island Swing", sending out shock-waves in the process. The attacks range and power is determined by the player's input. The player must push the attack button in succession with the song's beat in order to have greater range and power.


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The editor who added this tag elaborates: Needs short hop and double jump heights
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Stats Weight Dash speed Walk speed Traction Air friction Air speed Air acceleration Gravity Falling speed Jumpsquat Jump Height Double jump Height
Value 116 1.6 – Initial dash
1.622 – Run
1.2 0.0529 0.015 1.081 0.01 – Base
0.05 – Additional
0.081 1.58 – Base
6 35.83759414 - Base
? - Short hop

Announcer call[edit]

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Wii Remote selection sound[edit]

  • DK roars, similar to his attack sounds.
Donkey Kong's selection sound

On-screen appearance[edit]

  • Breaks out of a DK Barrel, grunts and makes a strongman pose.


  • Up taunt: Beats his chest.
  • Side taunt: Shakes himself, as if his fur was wet.
  • Down taunt: Faces the camera and shrugs his shoulders, making a confused noise.
Up taunt Side taunt Down taunt
DKUpTauntBrawl.gif DKSideTauntBrawl.gif DKDownTauntBrawl.gif

Idle pose[edit]

  • Bares his teeth and crosses his eyes while leaning forward.
  • Bumps his fists together, then performs an uppercut punch.
Donkey Kong Idle Pose 2 Brawl.png Donkey Kong Idle Pose 1 Brawl.png

Crowd cheer[edit]

English Japanese
Description Don-key Kong! Don-key Kong!
Pitch Group chant Group chant

Victory poses[edit]

A peaceful flourish originating from Donkey Kong Country that played whenever a Kong defeated a boss or completed a Bonus Level.
  • Up: Holds his hands above his head and shakes them.
  • Left: Does a backflip, then holds up his arms (updated version of his "character chosen" animation in Super Smash Bros.)
  • Right: Beats his chest. (Similar to his up taunt).
Up Left Right
DK-VictoryUp-SSBB.gif DK-VictoryLeft-SSBB.gif DK-VictoryRight-SSBB.gif

In competitive play[edit]

Notable players[edit]

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See also: Category:Donkey Kong players (SSBB)

Tier placement and history[edit]

Donkey Kong was initially seen as a high tier character in Brawl, being ranked 10th on the first tier list. The buffs he received from his transition from Melee to Brawl made him a powerful character that could compete against a then inexperienced playerbase who didn't utilize much camping and chaingrabbing. As the metagame developed however, it became apparent that Donkey Kong's buffs were simply not enough to keep him as a high tier character, since he struggled to deal with projectile camping from the likes of Snake, Falco and Olimar and was heavily vulnerable to chaingrabbing, most notoriously from King Dedede.

Donkey Kong's decline started slowly, as he fell to 14th on the second tier list, and fell again to 18th on the third one, but he remained there on the fourth iteration. He slightly dropped to 20th out of 38 on the fifth tier list before going back to 18th on the sixth tier list. The seventh tier list marked Donkey Kong's lowest placing to date at 23rd out of 38, before rising to his current position of 21st out of 38 on the current tier list. While Donkey Kong struggles at high levels of play, his representation and results gathered by his playerbase have managed to secure his position as a mid tier character. In the mid tier and lower, there aren't many projectiles that heavily disrupt his approach and chaingrabbing is much less frequent, which allows him to fully take advantage of his great mobility, range and excellent endurance.

Role in The Subspace Emissary[edit]

Donkey Kong in SSE.

The Koopa Troopas and Bowser steal Donkey Kong's Banana Hoard. As a Hammer Bro. drives off in a car which contains all the bananas, Donkey Kong watches him from a cliff. The Hammer Bro. and the Goomba aboard the car spot Donkey Kong and shoot Bullet Bills at him. However, Diddy Kong comes out from a bush and expertly shoots the Bullet Bills with his Peanut Popguns. Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong then follow the Hammer Bro. to retrieve the Banana Hoard. After following him, they see Bowser with a strange type of gun called a Dark Cannon, revealing that he is working for the Subspace Army. When Bowser charges the cannon, Donkey Kong quickly charges his Giant Punch and launches Diddy into the sky and out of the way, sacrificing himself. Bowser shoots Donkey Kong and turns him into a trophy. Later in the story, Diddy Kong, Fox and Falco see a ship which is carrying Donkey Kong as a trophy to a mysterious floating island. Falco then helps Diddy by following it with his Arwing and having the little Kong with him. Falco then does a barrel roll and drops Diddy out. Diddy fires up his Rocket Barrels and takes out his Popguns and shoots the ship. After seeing this, Captain Falcon and Olimar decide to help him and jump to the ship, where Diddy frees Donkey Kong. All four then fight the Primids and other enemies on the ship.

The ship takes them inside a factory producing Subspace Bombs, and encounter various R.O.B.s that happen to live on the island. They later meet up with Pikachu and Samus where they see the Ancient Minister and a whole lot of R.O.B.s. After Ganondorf controls the R.O.B.s into activating all of the Subspace Bombs, the Ancient Minister is shown to be R.O.B., the leader of all the lesser R.O.B.s who were forced to work for the Subspace Army. R.O.B. then fights with the others. When Diddy Kong points to leave, R.O.B just slumps and is so depressed that Donkey Kong has to carry him out. When trying to escape Captain Falcon calls for his Falcon Flyer and tries to leave the cave when Meta Ridley appears and they must fight him. After that they all meet up with the others.

Donkey Kong and the other heroes enter Subspace and meet Tabuu, who turns everyone into trophies with his Off Waves. However, King Dedede had anticipated this and created badges that revived certain fighters back into their original form. With his team consisting of Luigi and Ness, Dedede rescues Donkey Kong and most of the others, although some of them were rescued by Kirby. They also recruit Bowser, Ganondorf, and Wario when they learned about Tabuu. At the end of The Great Maze, Sonic shows up and helps weaken Tabuu's Off Waves so Donkey Kong and the others would be able to beat him and restore the World Of Trophies to normal (except the Isle Of The Ancients that was impossible to return due to the massive number of Subspace Bombs going off at once).

Playable appearances[edit]

Using stickers[edit]

Donkey Kong's attacks are primarily punches. Arm stickers are effective, as they will cover all moves bar dash attack, neutral aerial, up aerial, back aerial, down aerial, ledge attack when under 100%, Headbutt, Spinning Kong and Hand Slap. A Leg sticker covers back aerial, dash attack and down aerial. Head stickers affect his up aerial and Headbutt. Spin stickers affects his neutral aerial and Spinning Kong. His ledge attack when under 100% is affected by body stickers but has next to no use otherwise and Hand Slap is boosted by Specials: Direct stickers. While this may seem situational, Hand Slap is a very effective move when dealing with multiple grounded enemies as well as grounded bosses.

Exclusive stickers[edit]

These stickers can only be used by Donkey Kong or a select few including him.

  • Chunky Kong: [Throwing] attack +31
  • Diddy Kong (Donkey Kong 64): Launch power +20
  • Diddy Kong (Mario Hoops 3-on-3): [Leg] attack +28
  • Diddy Kong (Mario Superstar Baseball): [Leg] attack +12
  • Dixie Kong: Launch resistance +39
  • DK: [Head] attack +27
  • DK Barrel: Launch power +53
  • Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong Jungle Beat): [Arm] attack +22
  • Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong Country): [Electric] resistance +10
  • Donkey Kong (Mario Kart DS) : [Flame] resistance +41
  • Donkey Kong Jr.: [Arm] attack +14
  • Enguarde: [Body, Spin] attack +15
  • Funky Kong: [Leg] attack +13
  • Karate Kong: [Battering] resistance +25
  • Lanky Kong: [Throwing] attack +6
  • Party Monkey: [Head] attack +6
  • Pauline & Donkey Kong: [Arm] attack +18
  • Tiny Kong: [Arm] attack +4
  • Wrinkly Kong: [Battering] resistance +4

In Solo Modes[edit]

Classic Mode[edit]

In Classic Mode, Donkey Kong can appear as an opponent or ally in Stage 2 along with Yoshi and Diddy Kong on Yoshi's Island, Rumble Falls, or 75m (with the latter available if it has been unlocked). Donkey Kong can also appear as an opponent in Stage 11, but only if he hasn't appeared in Stage 2.

All-Star Mode[edit]

In All-Star Mode, Donkey Kong is fought in Stage 3 alongside Diddy Kong on Rumble Falls or 75m (with the latter available if it has been unlocked).

Event Matches[edit]

Solo Events[edit]

Co-Op events[edit]

Ending Images[edit]


Donkey Kong's main and Final Smash trophies can be obtained by clearing Classic Mode and All-Star mode respectively with Donkey Kong.

Donkey Kong trophy from Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
Classic Mode trophy
Donkey Kong
A carefree jungle dweller with the charisma of a natural leader. He keeps busy by foiling the plans of the Kremlings and their boss, King K. Rool. As his physique suggests, this ape is a powerhouse. He's got speed to match too, and his love for bananas is second to none. His famous necktie is adorned with his initials, DK.
SNES: Donkey Kong Country
N64: Donkey Kong 64
Konga Beat trophy from Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
Konga Beat trophy
Konga Beat
DK about to go to town with some bongos! His performance is so magnificent and upbeat that it creates damage-inducing sound waves. Press the buttons in time to the music, and the sound waves may grow stronger. DK's invulnerable when launching this attack, but he's also immobile, so be careful using it on scrolling stages.
Wii: Super Smash Bros. Brawl

Alternate costumes[edit]

Donkey Kong's palette swaps, with corresponding tournament mode colours.
DonkeyKongHeadSSBB.png DonkeyKongHeadBlackSSBB.png DonkeyKongHeadRedSSBB.png DonkeyKongHeadBlueSSBB.png DonkeyKongHeadGreenSSBB.png DonkeyKongHeadWhiteSSBB.png



  • Even though Donkey Kong has teeth, he only shows them when performing certain attacks or taunts. He occasionally opens his mouth with no teeth showing. For example, Donkey Kong shows his teeth when charging his up smash, but not during the attack portion.
  • Donkey Kong is the only character in Brawl who has more than four different throws.
  • When forward smashing with the Home-Run Bat, Donkey Kong has the longest range with the bat out of all the characters. However, if he is too close to the Sandbag or a character, they will be propelled upwards at a slight angle with drastically weaker knockback (though still powerful). This also happened to Donkey Kong in Melee.
  • Donkey Kong is one of only three characters that can't use their down special move in midair, the others are Peach and Pokémon Trainer, although he is capable of using Hand Slap in the air in Super Smash Bros. 4 and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
  • Donkey Kong is one of the few known characters to have an obvious error in his moveset coding - his forward aerial cannot be auto-canceled, but the coding of the move shows that it was intended to be able to, but it cannot due to a minor error caused by using the wrong type of timing function.

External links[edit]