Oregon man sets new 'Donkey Kong Junior' arcade world record
by Patrick Scott Patterson
Originally published April 27, 2013
The role-reversing 1982 arcade classic Donkey Kong Junior has a new world record champion.
Gamer Mike Kasper of Beaverton, Oregon is the new all-time scoring champ after scoring 1,349,000 points, toppling the previous record of 1,328,100 set by a multi-time champ in July 2010. The new score was set on an original arcade cabinet at a sanctioned Twin Galaxies arcade during a live broadcast on TwitchTV.
While he now stands at the all-time score leader on the game, Kasper recalls that he never really played Donkey Kong Junior as a child. In fact, he states that he only recently returned to playing arcade games after walking away from them at the tender age of 14.
"I didn't really play arcade games again until about eight months ago," he said. "I didn't play Junior all that much when I was younger. I can't remember for sure but I think my best back then was somewhere over 300,000 points, just running the boards."
After reconnecting with an old friend, Kasper was reintroduced to the game at a classic arcade tournament. After a promising performance there, he says he continued to play the game, improving his performance along the way.
"I got a little better and thought I could break this," Kasper said. "I started analyzing every board and the maximum points and realized the world record really wasn't that high considering how many points I really think are available."
Further studying the game, Kasper states that learning how to press the highest amount of points possible became his blueprint for beating the world record. While now reigning as the champion, however, he says his score can be defeated.
"I am taking a break from the game for now," he added. "I have no doubt Mark Kiehl will break my score, and possibly someone else, too. There are too many great gamers out there."