The ongoing Donkey Kong battle continues.
The cult classic film The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters made the all-time World Record on the arcade classic Donkey Kong perhaps the most famous title in video gaming. 2010 proved busy for the top spot, starting when New York plastic surgeon Hank Chien broke Billy Mitchell's 2007 record early in the year.
This title change prompted action by the previous record holders featured in the film. Mitchell struck back first, claiming the Donkey Kong record over the summer, while Washington state school teacher Steve Wiebe struck back a month later and reclaimed the record for the first time in several years.
Now Hank Chien has struck back, defeating Wiebe's score to reclaim his spot as the King of Kong.
Just announced by Twin Galaxies, the official scorekeepers for all video gaming, Chien has officially regained the record with as score of 1,068,000 points.
Recorded from his home on December 27 and submitted to Twin Galaxies referees for review, Chien still remembers his first claiming of the record last year.
"Regaining the title is great, but nothing beats the first time!" Chien stated to Denton Arcade Game Examiner. "I think after I lost the record, it was almost expected that I would get it back. Whereas the first time I don't think anyone, including myself, was expecting that I would break the world record."
The time of year is not the only similar note in Chien's two record setting games. In both cases, the record scores came while snowed in.
"There was a huge snowstorm in the northeast the day before and it continued into the earlier part of that day," Chien recalled. "My receptionist called me in the morning and told me that she would not be able to make it due to the snow. My car and the whole street where it was parked was buried to my waist in snow. We decided to close the office for the day. I even jokingly said 'I guess I have to break the Donkey Kong world record again.'"
Focus may be the factor in Chien's snow day success.
"I think on snowdays, I have a whole day to myself; a rarity. I'm cooped up at home. There are no distractions, just me and the machine."
Chien's game saw an early death and the once-again champ down to his last life halfway to his new record score.
"I didn't even think that game would break the world record," Chien said. "I had a horrible start scorewise and I died relatively early, but I continued thinking this is just a practice game. I was waiting for my last man to die, but my last man just would not die! The irony is that if I was playing to get the world record I would have probably restarted that game!"
Despite once again holding the Donkey Kong crown, Chien is certain his time as the champion could end at any time.
"There are about 10 people out there who are capable of beating that score. It wouldn't surprise me if the score was broken before this interview is published."
Two public events are upcoming where the record could fall. Multiple-time record holder Steve Wiebe will be making live attempts at Chicago's Logan Hardware, a music store with a vintage arcade in the Windy City.
Then, in March, Chien, Mitchell, Wiebe and numerous other contenders will converge on Richie Knucklez Arcade Games in New Jersey for a "Kong-Off" where the record score could be up for grabs.
"It wouldn't surprise me if it was broken more than once at the Kong Off!" says Chien. "Not to say the score is easy to beat, but it's still very doable."
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