Billy Mitchell, Donkey Kong’s record holder, has been branded a “cheater” after forensic analysts filed a report on the matter. The world record of the renowned game of “Kong” has always been in question as one of the biggest lies in history. A group of experts claim that Mitchell’s score was achieved on an emulator and not on original hardware. This situation does nothing more than accuse Billy of cheating in this classic of the video game world.
There has always been a lot of controversy surrounding Billy Mitchell, a well-known gamer who holds several records in classic arcade machines, such as Donkey Kong and Pac-Man. This situation led him to be the subject of a documentary, King of Kong. However, many people in the arcade and retro gaming community have raised concerns about the veracity of Mitchell’s achievements. The Guinness World Record organization was able to strip Billy Mitchell of his successes, although it later had to revoke the decision.
Billy Mitchell and an eternal doubt
The latest technical analysis performed states that Mitchell’s Donkey Kong records range from 1,047,200 to 1,050,200. The technical analysis was conducted by Tanner Fokkens, a hardware engineer and competitive player in the game in question. Fokkens was also supported by five other experts in the analysis of this situation. The real controversy was born when Mitchell presented himself as the record holder on the original arcade hardware of the famous “monkey” game. Its critics claim that it actually used a MAME, that is, an emulator that is recognized as a legal way to play games.
The issue is that everything is registered in two different platforms that are also recognized in different categories at the time of registration. During his report, Fokkens stated that “MAME scores that are passed off as coming from the original arcade are disqualified.” The engineer and Donkey Kong player presented his analysis focused on the differences between the original hardware and the emulator. Here we evaluated video orientation, screen transitions, the use of the high camera in relation to video memory scanning and what is the horizontal splitting in one or more places in the image. This analysis was performed based on the tape recordings Mitchell submitted at the time of the claim for his scores.
Fokkers, in his statements with the Motherboard platform, posited that the “transitions” are a digital footprint that the platform leaves on the details of the game. This situation would generate an irrefutable proof that, since 2018, is allowed to be known with the use of transitions. These are recorded when the game moves from the preceding screen to the game scenario itself. It is there when the CPU, Fokkens explained, that the graphical elements of the scenario are drawn into the video memory. The emulators, born to use arcade games on PC’s, were generating a different discipline in relation to the physical games of the video game houses.