Donkey Kong Jr. Math

Year: 1985
Publisher: Nintendo
Genre: Edutainment

The underlying concept of edutainment is that if you’re having fun while you learn, you will always love learning, and I’ll admit that the idea is sound. At the very least, I know that *I* enjoy learning, which has always driven me to learn pointless things that will never further my chosen career path (though at times I consider deviating to something more cosmopolitan than the legal profession such as concierge, game show contestant, or crazy homeless guy).

I digress. Allow me to introduce you to a sound argument against the proliferation of edutainment.

I’ve been playing Donkey Kong since my Atari days, and Donkey Kong Junior since only shortly thereafter (the aforementioned Gordon owned it, and I was thrilled by the delightful simian action it presented). I will also state that my mother, being of sound mind, never made the mistake of purchasing for me any game with “Math” in the title. So, with that in mind – namely that my childhood was untarnished by this game – this awful programming turd actually retroactively damaged my memories. I think I might actually like Donkey Kong less because of this.

So you’re a monkey and you solve math problems by competing with a second player. There really isn’t a single player mode, which is fine – you won’t want one anyway. That’s not to say you’ll want to play this with your friends, mind you. In fact, I’m pretty sure that if you play this with someone, you’re legally obliged to refer to them as your “victim.”

I “won”

John’s Rating: All in all, I give this game a 1.0 out of 5.0, but only because I already decided that if something can be reasonably classified as a “game,” I shall be obliged to rate it at least a 1.0.

Dark JCO’s Rating: I can’t believe that this is even classified as a game. It doesn’t have an ending screen or a single-player mode. It’s barely playable as a multiplayer game. If you want to teach people math, just teach math! 1.0 out of 5.0.

Lord Nightmare’s Rating: I like Donkey Kong Junior Math. It’s colorful and interesting. I like Math. I like little monkeys that climb the ropes and stuff. I just can’t find anyone who will play it with me. e^πi out of 5.0

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