Old artwork of the DK Barrel.

A DK Barrel (also called a Buddy Barrel in the Donkey Kong Country series) is a special kind of barrel, present in mostly of the Donkey Kong Country games, as well in some other spinoff titles.


Donkey Kong Country/Donkey Kong Land series

DK Barrels first appeared in Donkey Kong Country. Breaking one would summon a defeated Kong, making him/her playable. Other than freeing a hurt Kong, it functions somewhat like a Vine Barrel, where it smashes upon contact with anything, including the ground. However, there are aerial DK Barrels that break upon jumping contact in a Kong's inside. In the early DKC games, there are cheats to disable DK Barrels (along with Star Barrels) to increase the games difficulty.

New artwork of the DK Barrel from Donkey Kong Country Returns.

The DK Barrel has been featured in mostly of the Donkey Kong Country and Donkey Kong Land titles, including Donkey Kong Country Returns and Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D. In the New Mode of Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D, it is possible to purchase portable DK Barrels for five Banana Coins from Cranky Kong's Shop. They can be throw by using the Nintendo 3DS Touch Screen. In the multiplayer mode of both games, it is possible to expend an Extra Life Balloon and summon a dropping DK Barrel carrying a player's defeated character at any moment.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze

In Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, there are no DK Barrels. However, there are DD, DX and CK barrels to throw and summon Diddy, Dixie and Cranky Kong, respectively, as playable characters or assist Kongs for Donkey Kong. These barrels can be found inside levels and can be also purchased from Funky Kong's Fly 'N' Buy shop. In some levels, there are some barrels that will circle through insignias before a player pick them up, allowing to choose which character to summon.

Donkey Kong 64

In Donkey Kong 64, Tag Barrels had a similar function to DK Barrels. Tag Barrels were used to switch between playable Kongs, for different Kongs were needed to collect all of the bananas, Banana Medals and Golden Bananas.

Other Nintendo's Franchises and Spinoffs

The DK Barrel has made various spinoff appearances since.

  • In Super Smash Bros. and Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Donkey and Diddy Kong would emerge from a DK Barrel at the beginning of a battle. Also in Brawl, the DK Barrel is a sticker power-up, which does +53 Launch Power.
  • In Mario Party 8, when a player steps on a "DK Space", Donkey Kong will appear by bursting out of a DK Barrel.
  • A barrel with the DK insignia, the "Kong's Barrel", was one of many collectible treasures that Kirby discovered in "The Great Cave Offensive" mode of the games Kirby Super Star and Kirby Super Star Ultra. In-game, it is worth 1,500 G.
  • In Nintendo Monopoly, the DK Barrel is the token representative for the Donkey Kong franchise.

Manual Descriptions

Donkey Kong Country (GBA)
"Break one of these to keep the other Kong ready and waiting. He'll take over when your current Kong takes a hit, or you can press the L Button to swap them at any time."
Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest (GBA)
"Here's where you'll find your partner if he or she isn't already by your side. If both characters are already in play, you won't be able to break this Barrel when it's in mid-air."
Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! (GBA)
"Here's where you'll find your partner if they're not already with you. If you already have both Kongs, you won't be able to break the DK Barrels that float in mid-air."




Bonus Coin Static.gif Items (excluding mostly Barrels) Bear Coin Static.gif
General Animal CrateAnimal Token • (Giant) Banana (Bunch) • CrateCrystal CoconutCrystal StarEnd of Stage TargetExtra Life BalloonKannonKannonballK-O-N-G LettersNo Animal SignTireTreasure Chest
Coins Banana CoinBear CoinBonus CoinDK CoinKremkoinKong TokenNintendo CoinRareware Coin
Vehicles GyrocopterHover CraftMine CartMotor BoatRocket BarrelSkull CartTobogganTurbo Ski
Shop Banana JuiceDK Barrel (DD, DX & CK Barrels) • Extra Life BalloonHeart BoostMap KeySquawks the Parrot
Others Banana FairyBanana MedalBoss KeyCogCrestGolden FeatherPuzzle PieceRare Orb
Micellaneous Brothers Bear Items (Bowling BallMirror)
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