Puzzle Pieces are collectable items from Donkey Kong Country Returns, Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze. Every level, except for Boss levels and some other ones, contain either five, seven or nine hidden Puzzle Pieces.
There are many parts of a level's landscape that the player can interact with. Doing so may reveal Puzzle Pieces, like trying pounding on the ground near interactive elements, blowing out fires or the leaves on plants. In some cases, collecting all of the bananas floating in a group in the level will reveal a Puzzle Piece. Puzzle Pieces may also be found in Bonus Rooms (which are in most levels in the games) in which there will be a challenge to collect all of bananas, Banana Coins and Extra Life Balloons within thirty seconds and make a Puzzle Piece will appear in the room.
During a level, if the player(s) collected a Puzzle Piece and lost an extra life after, the games still will recognize the piece as collected. It will happen even if the player(s) collected the item before reaching a checkpoint. But if the player(s) leave(s) the current level early, without completing it by reaching the Slot Machine Barrel, all progress made collecting Puzzle Pieces will be lost.
In Donkey Kong Country Returns and Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D, it is possible for the player(s) to purchase Squawks the Parrot for fifteen Banana Coins (or five coins in the 3DS version New Mode) from Cranky Kong's Shop. After Squawks is equipped in the map and the player(s) enter(s) a level, the animal buddy will appear at the bottom of the screen sitting on a branch. The parrot will always squawk when the Kongs are close by a hidden Puzzle Piece or Bonus Room's entrance. In Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Squawks can be purchased from Funky Kong's Fly 'N' Buy.
The importance of collecting all Puzzle Pieces in a level is to unlock collectibles in the gallery. After collecting all the Puzzle Pieces in a level, the player will unlock an image that goes in some section of the Image Gallery in the Extras menu. After collecting all the Puzzle Pieces in a world and beating the world boss once, the player will unlock a diorama in the Diorama Gallery. Dioramas are tridimensional spinnable models, like the diorama of the Jungle world composed by Donkey and Diddy Kong riding an elephant under falling Screaming Pillars. Collecting every single Puzzle Piece will help the player on his/her way to completing all the games at one hundred percent rate.
|Items (excluding mostly Barrels)|
|General||Animal Crate • Animal Token • (Giant) Banana (Bunch) • Crate • Crystal Coconut • Crystal Star • End of Stage Target • Extra Life Balloon • Kannon • Kannonball • K-O-N-G Letters • No Animal Sign • Tire • Treasure Chest|
|Coins||Banana Coin • Bear Coin • Bonus Coin • DK Coin • Kremkoin • Kong Token • Nintendo Coin • Rareware Coin|
|Vehicles||Gyrocopter • Hover Craft • Mine Cart • Motor Boat • Rocket Barrel • Skull Cart • Toboggan • Turbo Ski|
|Shop||Banana Juice • DK Barrel (DD, DX & CK Barrels) • Extra Life Balloon • Heart Boost • Map Key • Squawks the Parrot|
|Others||Banana Fairy • Banana Medal • Boss Key • Cog • Crest • Golden Feather • Puzzle Piece • Rare Orb|
|Micellaneous||Brothers Bear Items (Bowling Ball • Mirror)|