Saturday, 14 May 2011

On the Origin of Kremlings

As a Donkey Kong Country fan, I've always been intrigued by the Kremlings. As a little kid who just got a Super Nintendo Entertainment System, I found myself loving the villainous crocodiles more than the monkeys I played as, my fondness for dinosaurs and reptiles probably to blame. And then Donkey Kong 64 and the TV show came along and the fondness only grew. I vaguely remember that as a little kid, during various games at school with my classmates, I used to pretend I was a Kremling. I bet none of them would know what I was talking about... well, they didn't, even if I had someone be that poor Kritter who was dangling off one of the Blast-O-Matic's constructions, yelling "Help! Help!" repeatedly. Heh.... moving on, in the last decade, it had been a rather bleak time for a DK fan such as me, for there were very little games released, apart from a few ports and games that would've suited better as platformers. However, where Nintendo threw out the whole original cast sans DK himself, the Japanese company Paon paid much more respect for the franchise and its characters. In one of their outings, Donkey Kong Barrel Blast/Jet Race, they brought back the whole DK crew, save for Chunky, Kiddy, and Swanky. (And Bluster as well, but he's a jerk and not canon to the games.) Even the not-usually remembered Lanky. In the Kremling roster, some new characters appeared, but even then, they brought back some old characters.

While I do applaud the fact they included a Kopter (a rather unfamiliar Kritter grunt from Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble!) and even Klump as a single character as opposed to a mere mook to the roster, I still weep for the fact that Krusha was nowhere to be found... and yet again, another big, bulky Kremling took his place.

As of now I'll be calling Krunchas Little Red Ragin' Hood.

However, I don't really mind now, as in Returns, there's no Kremlings in sight at ALL. However, in Jet Race/Barrel Blast, the new characters look pretty awesome and it's the first time ever that female Kremlings actually appeared in the game.

However, I'm going terribly off-topic. Allow me to ramble and pretend I'm a biologist or something. This doesn't concern Klaptraps, though. More about them later.


A long, long, long, long, LONG time ago (I'm talking really long here, about the time of the dinosaurs), in a, still unknown, island chain off the west coast of Africa, some of the ancestors of modern sea crocodiles took residence in an isolated island. Living more on land than in the water now, they gradually evolved stronger back legs and began walking upright, almost gaining humanoid body features. Thus, they didn't need their tails, so they shrunk. (The tails, not the crocodiles.) The species proved to be somewhat intelligent at a certain point (even though a certain monkey by the name of Diddy claims otherwise), gradually lost their protective, hard scales along the way of evolution, and started behaving much like our own ancestors did. Somehow, they evolved vocal chords that changed just the way modern humans' did, so they were able to communicate with speech, and they could hear much like humans too, even though they were lacking external ears. Eventually, they began wearing clothes, too, albeit not as much as us humans. This all took place within a time period of about a couple of million years. Apparently. Oh, and in the meantime, somewhere between all this, some adventurous friends found out a magical, glowing crater in the core of their island - they saw it as a source of power, and it was, and that exactly was when they gained intelligence akin to a human's. The folks that found it were king and queen now, and would pass their role down to their offspring.

Being well smart enough now to survive the meteorite that wiped out the dinosaurs, they flourished, but never quite left their isle. However, at a nearby isle, a new species was about to take over - the ancestors of the Kongs. They evolved the brains almost twice as quickly as the Kremlings, and without some fancy power source, even. Obviously, the crocodilians weren't amused by this, but all was well somehow for a couple of thousands of years.

Later, the species were now fully evolved to what they look like today, one particularly clever individual by the name of Prince K. Rool pretended to have a raging blood feud with the neighbouring isle, for the sole reason that his parents, the self-appointed King and Queen of the Kremlings, were attacked once by a young Donkey Kong Sr.. However, he got driven to madness once the ape walloped the young prince on the head with a barrel. Since then, he had never been quite the same.

Whereas they first communicated in a primitive, unknown language, most of them somehow began to speak normal British English after the influence of humans on their island. This goes for the Kongs too.

Humans from the Mushroom Kingdom, an alternate dimension somewhere, inhabited by sapient mushrooms and people alike, somehow reached the neighbouring DK Isle and made their constructions there. The Kremlings promptly chased off the humans to their own dimension after a few years and claimed the factories and cities built there as their own, much to the chagrin of the Kongs, the inhabitants of DK Island. It wouldn't be until a few years later the warp pipes that the humans used to colonize DK Isle would be discovered, and that DK Sr. and pals would be able to run amok in the Mushroom Planet. The relation between the two worlds is currently steady, and both Kremlings and Kongs flourished.

However, as K. Rool, now a king, was still bitter towards the Kongs and, just to tick the youngster of DK Sr., DK Jr., off, he stole the ape's prized banana hoard. However, he and his would-be nephew took it all back and defeated the Kremling King. Blinded by rage now, he kidnapped DK jr. and threatened to kill him. However, this was disastrous for him and his kingdom, as Diddy Kong and Dixie Kong (DK's wannabe nephew and Diddy's love interest, respectively) found out the Source, and, knocking K. Rool in it, sank Crocodile Isle to the bottom of the sea. All was well, the Kongs thought, but escaping and after a few villainous tricks, K. Rool pleaded the Kongs to let him live on their island. They agreed, but he could only stay in a remote, closed-off area at a side of the isle, and as long as he and his kin wouldn't bother the Kongs. Most of the Kritter troops and other 'loyal' henchmen abandoned him though, thinking he was a bad king, and so, he was on his own now. Nobody quite knows what he's up to, but some believe he's behind this Tiki madness that only recently occurred... 



Kremlings look just like humanoid, bipedal crocodiles.... that's because they are. However, there's a few glaring differences that set them aside from the 'normal' reptiles. For one, they don't get born from eggs. But they're not one hundred percent cold-blooded, either, so they're not fully dependent of the sun (however they do prefer a nice, sunny day over snowfall - some go into hibernation during a harsh winter). They also bear living young as opposed to laying eggs. Why female Kremlings are so scarce is due to the fact that their gender is still determined by the temperature of the world outside, somewhat like with 'normal' crocodiles and alligators, and because the temperature around their isle is almost constantly the same, there is an abundance of males. I don't know how this would work and it probably sounds like somebody wanted to be cool without thinking it through properly, but oh well. The Crocodile Kore is probably also able to create individuals...

There are two subspecies, one crocodile-like and the other gator-like, which are able to interbreed freely. Colour differences in their skin occur often and work much like humans' hair colours, varying from green to brown, to the more uncommon blue, red, and yellow.

Some individuals may grow hair or hair-like spines on their heads. Head-spines were an unusual but natural mutation that occurred not too long ago as an recessive gene, thus it's fairly unusual for any Kremling to have the trait. Hair, however, occurs often for females.

I also see you wondering what the hell I mean with the word 'Reptillimalia'. Well, while they appear mostly reptilian, they also happen to have a few mammalian traits, thus I am concerned that the females nurse their young in the same way us humans do. Proof? If Klump, his brother Skurvy, and klumps and kannons in general are anything to go by, I am also concerned that female individuals of the Kremling species possess mammaries and nurse their young. Mammaries are a typical mammalian trait, at that. Because of that I found it most apt to classify them as half-reptiles.


Like modern crocodiles, Kremlings mostly eat meat. However, they've proven to also be able to consume fruit and just about anything that's edible. Some Kongs however are still of the mind that they're cannibals, but this is a hoax as apart from a few insane individuals they have never been reported eating each other, thanks to their intelligence which the monkeys seem to disprove. Which brings us to the next chapter...

--Intelligence and social structure--

The species is as smart as humankind itself and able to form intriguing social structures. They have had a king or queen for a very long time now and are able to communicate with each other through speech. They're surprisingly self-aware and capable of feeling emotions. Most of them partly clothe themselves. Not fully, because most of their reproductive organs are, most of the time, unable to see while they're not busy having intercourse. I could go into detail, but I won't because then you guys will label me a pervert.

They have started wars on the neighbouring DK Isle in the past, and are hostile towards anyone from that island. However, they have been shown to be genuinely caring about their friends and family when not disrupted. 

The Kremlings have been known to communicate in two languages. The English language and their own language, the Kremean language. A very unusual language of which most words consist of deep growls. However, very few individuals speak the language to this day, only some natives still living in the Lost World (or as they call it, Nrha Rog). Some Kremean words are written on the Kore's pedestal. Apart from the Lost Worldians, the species occupies swamplands on the lowest part of their island and the forests near the top, all except for the king and his underlings who reside on an ancient fortress built on the very top of the island.

To this day, their technology remains a mystery - they have been shown to assume the role of classic pirates, yet the King has managed to escape in multiple futuristic airships various times, so it can be argued that their technology is on-par with humans'.

--The Conclusion--

The conclusion? That Kremlings are a beautiful, unique, and diverse species, and that we should do everything to protect them. Make sure they don't go extinct - protect the species at all costs and make sure that everyone can remember what they are like. (In other words: put them in the sequel to Donkey Kong Country Returns else I'll come to your headquarters, Retro Studios, and I'll throw itching powder in your archives.)


Do I have no life? No, I don't. Do I fail epically at biology and evolution? I sure do. Is biology and evolution interesting? HECK YEAH! This is why I like DKC - I can think of a logical backstory behind it! Fun fact - Nhra Rog is actually how I interpreted the chanting one can hear in the music track Primal Rave from Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest. It made me think. A lot of things make me think.

See ya, guys. Coming up next; DK Isle's flora and fauna. If I remember and feel like it...

All biological failures in this article are to blame on my limited knowledge and this should in no way be taken one hundred percent seriously. I had to use a lot of Wikipedia to make sure it would be at least a little bit convincing... and yeah, I'm sorry, Rare, Nintendo, Retro, Paon, and Nelvana.

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