The memory I have of Donkey Kong Jr. is that it saved my sanity when I was a kid.

For some reason my parents had gotten the idea into their heads that I would enjoy a week or two at some relative’s house during my summer holidays. I’d love the beach, and all the parks to play in, and the chance to get some fresh air, they told me on the trip down there. In hindsight I think my parents just wanted me to get the hell out of the house. I don’t ever remember expressing an interest in the beach or parks or fresh air, much less my relatives who I think I met like twice. But when you’re a kid you don’t really question things, or at least I didn’t.

Anyway. The beach was boring. The parks were boring. The fresh air smelled weird. The relatives didn’t like me much because I didn’t want to do anything. Maybe they thought I’d be entertaining or something. It was not a fun time.

Except…for some reason, I think a cousin or someone had inadvertently left behind a Donkey Kong Jr. Game And Watch in the room I was staying in.

That game became my entire life for the rest of the time I was there. I became so ridiculously good at it that I ended up playing it with my eyes closed, just relying on the crunchy sound effects to guide me through the jungle maze to rescue poor old Donkey Kong. The game became my life line, allowing me to kill time until I could go home again and rejoin all my friends who lived inside my Atari 2600.

Oh hey – if you want to play Donkey Kong Jr in all its original LCD glory, here’s a fantastic recreation!

Someone recently made an incredible Commodore 64 port of the arcade game, and I highly recommend it too.

(This comic originally ran in Reset 64 magazine over a year ago! Go check them out and read about all the latest Commodore 64 news!)