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The Kongs reach a DK Barrel near the letter N in Boulder Roller. Look at all those Boulders!

Boulder Roller is the forty-first level in Donkey Kong Country Returns, as well as the fourth level of the Cliff. Hence the name, the level features many spiked Boulders rolling around it. Throughout the level, the Kongs (Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong) must dodge a ton of Boulders in various sizes: small, medium-sized, quite large to one TREMENDOUS Boulder that appears at the start of the level and can be seen rolling around in the background after it has been removed out of the Kong's way. Some Boulders fall constantly on rock platforms and move down them, while other medium-sized ones roll down platforms in the background. Some Boulders are attached to ropes and swing back and forth (their appearance and behavior, as seen in the picture above, is similar to that of a Ball 'n' Chain of the Mario series) and others repeatedly fall down from above into gaps. Near the end of the level, the heroes must run and duck into two spaces in some slanted rock floors to avoid touching Boulders that roll-down these slanted rock platforms, and they must even travel in tight spaces between two Boulders! Also near the very end of the level, a giant Boulder (most likely the same Boulder that the heroes had to remove to start the level, which also can be seen rolling in the background) moves back and forth on a U-shaped platform. By touching any Boulder in this level makes the Kongs lose a Heart, however, the giant Boulder, which is the deadliest one, causes instant death if it rolls over the Kongs. Also, besides Boulders, the level features some wooden platforms that crumble when stepped on, and also some that move face up correctly so that they can be jumped on, then face down which causes the apes to fall off if still standing at this point, repeatedly. Enemies in this level include Skellyrexes, Bonehead Jeds, and of course, Boulders. In Time Attack mode, a time of 1:22:00 is needed to get a gold medal, a time of 1:47:00 for a silver medal, and a time of 2:51:00 for a bronze medal.


Overview

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The heroes blow on the fan so that they can bring the wooden platform down. Right now, the apes are following the process to get rid of the giant Boulder blocking the way.

The level begins with the Kongs landing on a rock floor. The heroes can head forward to enter an area with a raised, wooden part of floor with a fan next to it, an angry, devilish-looking gold vine statue of an ape's head in the air, a wooden platform next to the vine statue, and a giant Boulder on some rocks blocking the Kongs' path. This area is quite a trick to understand at first, because how on Donkey Kong Island are the Kongs supposed to get on that wooden platform? Well, here's the trick. The heroes should jump on the raised wooden platform and blow on the fan next to it. This will bring the wooden platform down a point where it can be jumped on. The heroes should keep blowing until the wooden platform stops moving downward. Now the heroes should jump onto this wooden platform. It will carry the heroes up and stop back in place. Anyway, the heroes can then jump and cling onto the vine of this angry, devilish-looking gold vine statue of an ape's head to pull it. This causes the area with the raised platform and fan to move down into an abyss and bring up a similar area that holds one giant, gold switch with a DK logo on it. The heroes can drop down onto this switch. The heroes should pound this switch until only the part with the DK logo is sticking out of the ground. The rocks holding the giant Boulder will break, causing the Boulder to fall into the rock in the background and roll away. The music also switches to Boulder Roller's main music. Shortly after the heroes pass the area with the giant Boulder, they will bump into a Skellyrex right before a wooden part of floor, which is also the end of this floor. A skull Barrel Cannon (skull Barrel Cannons/Auto-Fire Barrels explode/destroy themselves, whatever you want to call it, after firing the Kongs) can be seen above the wooden platform, however, it is too high to be reached with a jump. Anyway, after this wooden part of the floor, a small gap can be found, and some another floor is on the opposite side of it. The heroes can easily jump on this other floor. Some small Boulders roll down this slanted floor, while a Skellyrex walks on it right after the point where the Boulders fall from above and land here. Also, a small wooden platform as well as a larger one holding the letter K of the K-O-N-G Letters to the left of this small wooden platform can be found in midair, as well as a trail of two Bananas and two blue, propeller-like plants that can be blown on for a collectible, most likely. A secret here is, if the heroes high bounce off the Skellyrex and move left, they can land on the larger wooden platform with the letter K on it and head left. Here, the apes can then jump inside the skull Barrel Cannon that was once too high to be reached. The skull Barrel Cannon aims upward and can fire the heroes into a Bonus Room. Anyway, immediately after these two propeller-like plants, there is a quite large gap that holds a wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on in the middle of it. The wooden platform also separates two areas where Boulders repeatedly fall from above and into the abyss. Since these Boulders can hurt the Kongs if they touch it, the heroes must watch out for them. However, there is a sign to tell when these and any Boulders is about to fall from above. Anytime a Boulder is about to fall from above, some small rocks fall before the Boulder lands on the ground/falls into the abyss. So carefully, the heroes should jump on this wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on. One falling Boulder dodged, another to go (there's really more of these that appear further on in the level, but...)! Anyway, another slanted floor can be seen at the end of this "falling in the gap" Boulder area. So, carefully, the heroes should jump onto this floor before the platform's remains carry the heroes into the abyss with them, causing them to lose an Extra Life Balloon. On this slanted floor, small Boulders constantly fall from above and roll down this. A Bonehead Jed moves about on a wooden part of the floor that holds a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely. The Bonehead Jed is right after the small Boulders' landing point. So, to get here, the heroes will have to jump over some of these many small Boulders. At the end of this floor, the heroes can find a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a collectible, most likely, as well as a gap with a wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on in the middle of it. A small wooden platform that does not crumble when landed on is directly above this wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on, and it holds a DK Barrel on it. Also, the two wooden platforms stand in between two areas where Boulders repeatedly come up from below and fall back into the gap. The Boulders only go up a little higher than the platform with the DK Barrel on it before falling back into the gap, however, they are still a danger to avoid. So, carefully, the heroes should jump onto the platform with the DK Barrel (because it's safer). Here, the heroes can wait patiently for a chance to jump on another floor, which is also slanted, but smaller and facing the opposite directions of the previous (it faces to the right; the previous ones face to the left). When the apes can jump to this floor safely, they should jump here, however, the apes should land on the wooden part of this slanted floor. This is because some Boulders will fall right in front of the Kongs and roll down the slope. So, carefully, the apes should run past this landing point for these Boulders to avoid getting hit by a falling Boulder and losing a Heart. After this has been passed, it isn't much to go before the heroes reach a small gap with a small wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on in between in it. Also, another similar-shaped slanted floor which is facing left, like the ones before the last slanted floor the heroes are on can be seen, and Boulders roll down it as well. Anyway, the heroes should jump on the small wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on and then jump on the floor after it. Here, they can run up to the top edge of this floor, dodging Boulders along the way. Here, the Kongs will find a gap with four wooden platforms that crumble when stepped on, and a larger, non-crumbling, wooden platform that holds a blue, propeller-like plant that can blown on for a collectible, most likely, divides the crumbling wooden platforms into groups of two. A Banana Bunch is above the wooden platform with the blue propeller-like plant, as well as above the fourth (last) wooden platform. Also, Boulders fall from the spaces between the wooden platforms. A slanted floor facing to the right is after the fourth crumbling platform of this area, and it holds a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely and a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a Puzzle Piece, most likely. Small Boulders roll down the slanted floor. The heroes should carefully cross this area, and jump to this floor. They should land on the wooden part of this floor, because this area is right before the Boulders' landing point here. Now carefully, the heroes should run past the Boulders' landing point, jump over a small gap, only to land on a lower wooden floor that is attached to a slightly higher rock floor. The lower wooden floor holds a trail of four Bananas and a Skellyrex on it. The apes can just jump onto the slightly higher rock floor, which holds the Tutorial Pig who hosts the checkpoint. Shortly after the checkpoint, there is another lower floor that holds four Bananas and Bonehead Jed. A small wooden platform that holds the letter O is above the lower floor with the Bonehead Jed, and it can be reached with a high bounce off the Bonehead Jed. There is a gap right after this lower floor with the Bonehead Jed on it, and a rock platform with a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a collectible, most likely, stands in the middle of the gap. A platform that goes all the way into the background is after this rock platform in the middle of the gap, and Boulders constantly roll down this platform. These platforms are dangerous obstacles, and the heroes must go through more of these, some put in groups. Anyway, some Boulders rise out of the gap to the left of the rock platform, and fall back into the gap. Carefully, the heroes should jump onto the rock platform. Now since no Boulders come out of the gap to the right of the rock platform, the heroes should now carefully (watching out for the Boulders too) jump on the platform that goes all the way into the background. A wooden platform is ahead, and it holds a Skellyrex and a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely, however, Boulders rise up and fall back in the small gap between the platform that goes into the background, and this wooden platform. So, with that being said, the heroes must now be careful when they are planning to jump here. Carefully, the primates should jump here. After this wooden platform, three platforms that go into the background can be found, and two small wooden platforms, one with a Banana and the other with a Banana Bunch, are after them. The middle platform that goes into the background is slightly higher than the other two, and has a Banana Bunch. On all three of these platforms that go into the background, Boulders come out of their holes and roll down these platforms. Another Boulder only appears when the Boulder on the platform is about to roll off the edge of the platform and into the gap. So, using this strange technique, the heroes can jump on all three platforms and get across this area safely. So, on this first platform that goes into the background, the heroes can jump on the middle platform that goes into the background when it is safe to jump. Here, when the last platform that goes into the background of this area is safe to jump on, the Kongs should jump on it. They can then jump on the first crumbling wooden platform that holds a Banana on it, and then jump on the second, higher, crumbling wooden platform that holds a Banana Bunch on it. From here, the primates can now jump to a wooden platform with a Skellyrex on it, a trail of four Bananas, and a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely. Here, the heroes can see another platform that goes into the background with a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a collectible, most likely on it. Boulders roll down this platform. In the small gap between the wooden platform the primates are on and the platform that goes into the background, there are Boulders that fall from above and land straight into the abyss constantly. So, this is double timing for the duo. The heroes must now make sure it is safe to jump over the gap and onto the platform that goes into the background. When it is safe to do both, the heroes can end up on the platform that goes into the background. Here, they can jump onto a small rock platfom that stands over a gap. Here, right in front of the apes, are two wooden platforms attached to four ropes, two on top and two on the bottom with a Banana Bunch in between the two wooden platforms. However, these aren't any ordinary wooden platforms, THEY ARE WOODEN PLATFORMS WHO'S FACES MOVE UP AND DOWN CONSTANTLY!!! So, when the face is facing up, the heroes can jump on it, but soon it will shake a bit and face down, dropping the Kongs into the gap below if they are still standing on it when the face does so. These wooden platform faces move in a pattern: if one side is facing up, then the other is facing down and vice versa. So, the Kongs will have to do a couple jumping back and forth to get past here safely. A platform that goes into the background is after this pair of "moving faces" wooden platforms, and it holds a Skellyrex on it. Also six or seven Boulders roll down this at a time, before it ceases for a short period. When the heroes see the last Boulder roll off the edge of this platform, the heroes should jump on it. They can then jump to a rock platform with a lower wooden platform attached to it that holds a DK Barrel, however, the heroes must watch out for a Boulder on a rope that swings back and forth. After this rock platform with the wooden platform attached to it, there is a small wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on that holds a single Banana. After this small wooden platform that crumbles when stepped on, there is a small wooden part attached to a rock floor. A Skellyrex walks on the side with the wooden part, and there is another Skellyrex walking close to the letter N in a corner. Also, a large, cracked brown rock is on the floor, and it sits over a wooden part of floor. Also, a Boulder on a rope swings back and forth above this cracked, brown rock. Anyway, the heroes should carefully jump on the small, crumbling, wooden platform and then carefully jump to the wooden part of this large floor with the other swinging Boulder above it. The letter N is a piece of cake to reach since it is just jumping over the large, cracked, brown rock and running into it in the corner, however, the swinging Boulder is the obstacle the heroes must watch over. Since the swinging Boulder swings directly over the cracked, brown rock, the heroes can get hurt if it touches them standing on the rock. Anyway, to get out of this area, the heroes should give the large, cracked, brown rock a couple of pounds to break it, while dodging the swinging Boulder (jump off the rock if it swings toward you). The Kongs can then pound on the wooden part of floor, which the rock once stood over, to flip it over (Wow, much like the gates in the Flipsville Galaxy!) and land on a floor with a cactus behind the Kongs that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely. If the Kongs move forward, they can see two small wooden platforms that crumble when stepped on, each holding a Banana on them. The heroes can jump onto the first small wooden platform, and then quickly, jump onto the second small wooden platform. A platform that goes into the background is the next platform the heroes should jump on, however, due to a wooden platform with a Banana Bunch on it above the platform that goes into the background, it is a little more difficult to see the Boulders rolling down this platform. Anyway, a rock platform with a lower part that holds a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely, and a slightly higher part that holds a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a collectible most likely is after this platform that goes into the background. Carefully, before the second wooden platform drops the apes into the abyss, the heroes should jump onto the platform that goes into the background and then
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The heroes jump onto the wooden platform above a platform that goes into the background to reach a Puzzle Piece on a higher, smaller wooden platform.

jump onto this lower part of the rock platform. Here, the heroes can jump onto the wooden platform above the platform that goes into the background, which holds a Banana Bunch, and then jump to a higher, smaller wooden platform that holds a Puzzle Piece on it, most likely. After this, the heroes can then jump back onto the lower part of this rock platform, and then jump to the higher part of it. Here, two platforms that go into the background can be seen. A Banana Bunch is above the first platform that goes into the background. Both platforms have Boulders coming out from in the background, like all do, however, there is difference. The first platform that goes into the background only lets out another Boulder when the previous Boulder is about to fall off the edge and into the gap, while the second platform that goes into the background lets out seven Boulders before it ceases and lets out seven more again. So, the heroes should jump on the first platform that goes into the background when it is safe. Now, the heroes should wait patiently until all seven Boulders of the second platform that goes into the background fall off the edge, and then quickly jump on it. A wooden platform with a Skellyrex and a trail of four Bananas on it is after the second platform that goes into the background. The Kongs should quickly jump to this wooden platform before the Boulders of the second platform that goes into the background roll over them, causing them to lose a Heart. Here, a lower rock floor that holds the Tutorial Pig hosting the second checkpoint can be found. After the checkpoint (by the way, you can also see the giant Boulder from the beginning of the level roll on in the background here), the heroes can jump onto a slightly higher wooden platform that holds four Bananas and a Bonehead Jed on it. After this wooden platform, the heroes can find a small gap with a crumbling, wooden platform in the middle of it. The heroes can jump on this wooden platform and then jump onto a slanted floor which angle is going upward, not downward. Quickly the heroes should head into a space in the floor with a Banana Bunch and duck, for a large Boulder will fall from above and roll down this slanted platform. No wonder the floor has spaces in it! However, once the first one passes, that doesn't mean get up and move, for another Boulder will fall from above and roll down this slanted floor. By the way, there is a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a collectible, most likely in between the space the heroes are on and the next space the heroes must run to, as well as a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely near the top edge of this floor. The cactus is right in the landing point of these Boulders, so the heroes should be quick when it comes to pounding this. Anyway, once the second Boulder rolls off the edge of this slanted floor, the heroes should run to the next space and duck immediately. You see, after every two Boulders, there is a cease before the process is repeated. The cease should be used to run/roll into these spaces. Anyway, two more Boulders will roll down this slanted floor before there is another cease. Once the second Boulder rolls past the space the Kongs are ducking in, the heroes can get out of the space, run to the edge of this floor, and quickly jump onto a wooden platform that holds six Bananas, a Skellyrex, and a blue, propeller-like plant that can be blown on for a collectible most likely, on it. After this wooden platform, there is a smaller, crumbing, wooden platform in a gap, and there is another slanted floor with two spaces in it after it. The heroes should jump to this smaller, crumbling, wooden platform and jump onto the slanted floor with two spaces. When the heroes land on this floor, the heroes should go into the first space in the floor and duck immediately, for a large Boulder will fall on the floor and roll down it. Shortly before the first Boulder rolls over the space the heroes are in, a second large Boulder falls onto the floor and rolls down it. The Kongs should continue to duck. Once the second large Boulder rolls over the space the heroes are in, they can afford to lift their heads. However, the second space is much farther apart than on the first slanted floor with spaces on it. So, the duo must roll into this space and duck immediately, or they will lose a Heart (due to the process of two falling Boulders repeating). However, the heroes can leave this space immediately after the second Boulder rolls over the space they are in. Here, the heroes can then jump to a wooden floor connected to a slanted floor, this time, facing the opposite direction of the two floors that had two spaces in them. On this wooden floor, there are six Bananas, a Skellyrex, the letter G not too high above the Skellyrex, and a cactus that can be pounded on for a collectible, most likely. The letter G can be reached if the primates high bounce off the Skellyrex. Anyway, once the heroes jump here, Boulders constantly fall onto this rock part of the floor and roll down it, one after another. Since the Boulders fall so quickly after the previous one falls, the only way the heroes can get between them is if they travel in tight spaces between the two of them. So, once on Boulder falls the heroes should run until they get close behind it. As both Boulders (the one in front and the one behind) roll down this floor, the heroes should move too, and also keep close to the Boulder in front of them to prevent them from losing a Heart. Now that doesn't mean touch the Boulder in front of you, for you also lose a Heart that way! Anyway, soon after traveling between two Boulders, the heroes will approach the end of the floor, where they can fall into a gap with a Barrel Cannon in it. Once the heroes fall into this gap, they will be caught by the Barrel Cannon. Now, the objective for the heroes is to fire past these falling Boulders onto a large, wide, U-shaped floor. Once one Boulder falls, the heroes should immediately fire here. Once the heroes start going down on this wide, U-shaped floor, a giant Boulder falls onto the floor behind them, and starts rolling down it too. The heroes should roll to the end of this to avoid the Boulder, for if it rolls over them, it is instant death. Once the apes reach the top of this floor, which is a wooden part of floor, they are safe, for all the Boulder does is roll back and forth on this U-shaped floor. However, in the middle of this U-shaped floor, there is a gap with a Banana Bunch and two large, brown, cracked rocks in it. If the Kongs fall in here instead of jump over it, the heroes can pound on both of the rocks to fall into a Puzzle Piece and be caught by a Barrel Cannon. Now the heroes must fire onto the other side of the U-shaped floor while the giant Boulder is moving up the previous side. Anyway, after the wooden part of this floor, there is a wooden, crumbling platform with a Barrel Cannon after it. The heroes should jump onto this wooden, crumbling platform and quickly jump into the Barrel Cannon. Now, the heroes must fire into the level's Slot Machine Barrel before a giant Boulder attached to a rope lowers into them and kills them. Once the heroes fire into the Slot Machine Barrel, the level is complete!


Secrets

K-O-N-G Letters

  • K: Shortly after the heroes get rid of the giant Boulder in their way, they can find the letter K on some wooden platforms above them. If the heroes bounce on a nearby Skellyrex, they can reach the letter.
  • O: The letter O is on a wooden platform high in the air after the first checkpoint. If the Kongs high bounce on the Bonehead Jed beneath the letter, they can reach this wooden platform and collect the letter.
  • N: Before the heroes pound on a wooden platform over a large, cracked, brown rock that flips over (the wooden platform flips over, not the rock), the heroes can find the letter N in a corner after it. The letter can easily be reached by running into it, however, once the heroes try to get rid of the brown rock with some pounds, they must dodge a swinging Boulder.
  • G: After the second floor with spaces in it, the heroes can find the letter G above a wooden part of floor attached to another slanted floor. The heroes can high bounce on the Skellyrex here to reach this letter.

Puzzle Pieces

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    The Kongs have unleashed the sixth Puzzle Piece from the cactus.

    After the letter K, the Kongs should roll-jump to the left to land in a skull Barrel Cannon that fires them into a Bonus Room. Here, the heroes must maneuver around several stationary platforms to collect 78 Bananas and two Banana Coins. If everything is collected within thirty seconds, a Puzzle Piece appears.
  2. If the Kongs pound on the first cactus after the first Puzzle Piece, they can find the second Puzzle Piece.
  3. The Kongs can reveal the third Puzzle Piece by blowing on the blue, propeller-like plant before the first checkpoint.
  4. As the heroes travel along the platforms that go into the background, they can find a blue, propeller-like plant growing on the path just after a platform with a cactus on it. If this plant is blown on, it comes out of the ground, like all do, with a Puzzle Piece attached to it.
  5. Just before the second checkpoint, there is a cactus on a solid platform. To the left of this, there are some wooden platforms above a platform that goes into the background. If the Kongs jump here, and then jump to the top wooden platform, they can find a Puzzle Piece.
  6. In the first area where the duo must duck in small spaces to dodge large Boulders, they can find a cactus almost under the landing point of the big rocks. They must pound on this cactus to reveal a Puzzle Piece before the process of two falling Boulders repeats.
  7. In the middle of the U-shaped Boulder, the heroes can drop into a space in the ground that holds two brown, cracked rocks. If the heroes pound on both of these rocks, they will drop through a Puzzle Piece and land inside a Barrel Cannon. The heroes can then fire to the other side of the U-shaped floor when the giant Boulder is not on that side and is moving up the other side.

Gallery

Trivia

  • Boulder Roller Squiddicus-like fossil

    The heroes fire onto the U-shaped pathway. But look at the fossil in the background! Doesn't it look like Squiddicus?

    Right in the area between the floor with the many Boulders falling on it, which the heroes must get through by walking in a tight space between two Boulders and the U-shaped floor that has the giant Boulder falling onto it, the heroes can find a fossil that looks like Squiddicus. This suggests that there may be a race of these creatures.
  • In this level, the heroes must remove a giant Boulder out of their way to begin the level. Another giant Boulder can be seen rolling in the background as the heroes proceed through the level, and a third giant Boulder falls on the U-shaped floor after the heroes pass its landing point. This may be all one giant Boulder that appears at the start of the level, rolls through the background, and then falls onto the U-shaped floor, or it could be three Boulders (one that appears at the start of the level and rolls through the background, one that falls on the U-shaped pathway, and one that is lowered when the Kongs enter the Barrel Cannon to fire into the Slot Machine Barrel.

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