The debate over who is the greatest Donkey Kong player of all time continues to rumble on, more than a decade after the events of the incredible documentary King of Kong.
Billy Mitchell, the flamboyant and bombastic antagonist from the film, whose Donkey Kong high scores have long been a point of controversy and contention, has earned a reprieve from Guinness World Records.
Guinness has reversed its 2018 decision to strip Mitchell of his Donkey Kong and Pac-Man high scores, claiming there isn’t enough evidence to disqualify his scores despite accusations they were achieved through nefarious means.
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Guinness World Records Editor Craig Glenday said: “In this case, a re-examination of the records in question and the emergence of key eyewitness and expert testimonials led to a reversal of earlier disqualifications and the reinstating of Mr Mitchell’s original records. The records archive has been updated accordingly to reflect this.”
Mitchell, who’s since been toppled as the all-time Donkey Kong points leader, gets his various high marks back, as well as the honour of notching of the first ever perfect score on Pac-Man.
His re-instated records (via Eurogamer) are:
3 July 1999 – First Perfect Score on Pac-Man – 3,333,360 Points
7 November 1982 – Highest score on Donkey Kong – 874,300 Points
4 June 2005 – Highest score on Donkey Kong – 1,047,200 Points
14 July 2007 – Highest score on Donkey Kong – 1,050,200 Points
31 July 2010 – Highest score on Donkey Kong – 1,062,800 Points
However, Mitchell has not been exonerated in the eyes of Twin Galaxies, the gaming record keepers who allege at least one score was achieved using an emulator, rather than an original arcade machine. Mitchell currently has an open defamation lawsuit against Twin Galaxies, with a hearing scheduled for early next month.
If you’ve not seen King of Kong: A Fistful Of Quarters, the masterfully-crafted documentary film about the battle for the Donkey Kong world record, we’d advise you rectify that. The film charts the epic back and forth duel between Billy Mitchell and the loveable Steve Weibe over the all-time high score on the 1981 arcade machine.
It has drama, controversy, heartache, good guys, bad guys, unruly egos, a bitter rivalry, and everything in between. Basically it makes the Rocky franchise look like a casual game of Wii Boxing. The film ended with Mitchell reclaiming the record in dubious circumstances (which was parodied tremendously by South Park). The debate will no-doubt rage on despite Guinness reinstating Mitchell’s marks.