Press Release

The Strong National Museum of Play to Create the World’s Largest, Playable Donkey Kong Arcade Machine

Published April 10, 2023

April 10, 2023
For Immediate Release
Contact: Shane Rhinewald, srhinewald@museumofplay.org, 585-410-6365

ROCHESTER, NY—The Strong National Museum of Play, home to the World Video Game Hall of Fame, will create the world’s largest, playable Donkey Kong arcade game. The game, which will stand nearly 20-feet tall, will be a prominent feature in The Strong’s 90,000 square-foot-expansion, dedicated to the history of video games, opening on June 30, 2023. Nintendo of America is providing input on the project.

Rendering of the Donkey Kong arcade machine with the outline of a person under it for scaleDonkey Kong is a true titan in the video game world—both in terms of character size and the iconic status of the game—so it lends itself perfectly to this playful, whimsical installation,” says Jon-Paul Dyson, PhD, vice president for exhibits at The Strong. “The museum’s expansion will provide a new and bigger home for the World Video Game Hall of Fame, and fittingly, Donkey Kong was inducted into the hall in 2017. We’re thankful to Nintendo of America for providing guidance as we create this unique game feature as authentically and true to the original game as possible.”

The world’s largest Donkey Kong arcade game will be visible from the first-floor welcome atrium of The Strong’s expansion and be playable just outside the ESL Digital Worlds gallery on the second floor. The game will be about 370% bigger than the original and constructed from an aluminum frame with MDF fiberboard. Players will stand at a pedestal beneath the towering screen and use a regular-sized control panel that replicates the original joystick and buttons. It will run on a motherboard from an original Donkey Kong cabinet, mirroring the original gameplay and experience as closely as possible.

The giant Donkey Kong is expected to be completed this spring and available for play on June 30, 2023.

About The Strong

The Strong is the only collections-based museum in the world devoted solely to the history and exploration of play. It is home to the International Center for the History of Electronic Games, the National Toy Hall of Fame, the World Video Game Hall of Fame, the Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play, the Woodbury School, and the American Journal of Play and houses the world’s largest and most comprehensive collection of historical materials related to play.