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Diddy Kong Racing

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Title Screen

Diddy Kong Racing

Developer: Rare[1]
Publisher: Nintendo[1]
Platform: Nintendo 64
Released in JP: November 21, 1997[1]
Released in US: November 24, 1997[1]
Released in EU: November 21, 1997[1]
Released in AU: November 21, 1997[1]
Released in KR: 1997[1]

AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
CodeIcon.png This game has unused code.
CopyrightIcon.png This game has hidden developer credits.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
ModelsIcon.png This game has unused models.
MovieIcon.png This game has unused cinematics.
MusicIcon.png This game has unused music.
SoundIcon.png This game has unused sounds.
TextIcon.png This game has unused text.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
SoundtestIcon.png This game has a hidden sound test.
RegionIcon.png This game has regional differences.
Carts.png This game has revisional differences.
PiracyIcon.png This game has anti-piracy features.

DevelopmentIcon.png This game has a development article
PrereleaseIcon.png This game has a prerelease article
NotesIcon.png This game has a notes page
BugsIcon.png This game has a bugs page

To do:
The decompilation project contains a few things worth adding here:
  • Unused code to print the version number on the title screen, a leftover from the pre-release build.
  • An unused player state which would've flipped them into the air and played an unused sound (spring_trap_snd)
  • Another anti-piracy measure which severely reduces traction on some surfaces, rendering them undrivable.

Diddy Kong Racing is like Mario Kart but with more interesting tracks, as well as planes and hoverboats in addition to karts.


Read about development information and materials for this game.
Development Info
Read about prerelease information and/or media for this game.
Prerelease Info
Miscellaneous tidbits that are interesting enough to point out here.
Read about notable bugs and errors in this game.
Unused Text
And lots of it, too.
Unused Models
Unused Tracks

Debug Display

Debug Setup Objects

DKR64-Debugobjects1.png DKR64-Debugobjects2.png DKR64-Debugobjects3.png DKR64-Debugobjects4.png DKR64-Debugobjects5.png

Applying the below GameShark code will display various debug objects in the current map, normally unseen.

Version GameShark code
All 81014844 2402
81014846 0000
81012D70 240E
81012D72 0000
(Source: retroben)

Invisible Collision

Use one of the below GameShark codes to display the normally invisible collision.

Version GameShark code Version GameShark code
U V1.0 8002974A 0000 U V1.1
E V1.0 E V1.1
(Source: David)

Current Colors


A simple debug display showing the current colors being rendered in the area can be displayed with the below code.

Version GameShark code
US v1.0 81065E7C 0000
81065E7E 0000
80065E85 0001
81065E86 C6D5
EU v1.0
US v1.1 810660BC 0000
810660BE 0000
800660C5 0001
810660C6 C765
EU v1.1
Japan 81065F4C 0000
81065F4E 0000
80065F55 0001
81065F56 C70F
(Source: Punk7890)

Crash Debugger

Present in the game is a crash debugger that can be enabled by entering the cheat EPC in the Magic Codes screen. You'll also need a memory card plugged into the first controller. When the game crashes, reset the console and the crash debugger will appear. It'll quickly flip through four different pages automatically. Resetting the console again will boot up the game normally.

Checkpoint Error Message


If for whatever reason a track has more than one checkpoint, an error message will display at the bottom of the screen very quickly.

Version GameShark code
US v1.0 810180D4 0000
810180D6 0000
EU v1.0
US v1.1 81018108 0000
8101810A 0000
EU v1.1
(Source: SubDrag)

Sound Test

Diddy Kong Racing Sound Test.png

A sound test is accessible by the cheat code "JUKEBOX".

Unused Music

Early Crescent Island Theme

Sound test track 12 ("sea_2b" internally) is an early theme for Crescent Island but was cut in favor of a different song.

Unused Player-Select Theme

The character-select music changes its lead instrument depending on the character highlighted by the player. Within the track, there is a MIDI channel for a sitar lead which cannot be triggered under normal circumstances. This may point to Taj the genie being playable at some point in development as the track shares its sitar with his other in-game themes. Taj would eventually be made playable in the game's DS remake.

Unused Sounds

ID Sound Filename Comments
shootmissile3_snd An unused, alternate missile firing sound.
what_06_snd A cartoon boing sound.
what_09_snd A cartoon bonk sound.
select_up_dwn_snd A sound effect likely meant for a menu based on the filename.
drive_past1_snd A sound of a car driving by.
spring_trap_snd A sound for some kind of trap.
more_warden_16_snd A voice clip of Taj saying "It's a balloon".
dactil_hit_snd A sound effect for the pterodactyls seen throughout Dino Domain tracks. It seems that you were able to hit them at one point, but in the final game, you can't interact with them in any way.

(Source: Ferrox)

Unused Cheats

There are some unused/debug cheat codes in the game. Some are still enterable, others have been changed to a string of numbers, rendering them unenterable due to the convenient lack of numbers on the cheat code entry keyboard. To unlock all cheats, including the unused ones, use one of the below GameShark codes.

Version GameShark code Version GameShark code
U V1.0 810DFD9C FFFF
U V1.1 810E031C FFFF
810E031E FFFF
E V1.0 810DFE2C FFFF
E V1.1 810E03AC FFFF
  • High Speed Racing (code 1234567890): According to Nintendo Power[2] this would have increased everyone's top speed or possibly just done the same thing as the "No Limit To Bananas" code, and as such it was removed for being redundant. Whatever the intended purpose, enabling it doesn't actually do anything in the final build.

It's also mistakenly listed in the official strategy guide, which helpfully doesn't give you the actual codes.

  • Print Coords (code 8846325012): Displays player 1's coordinates in the upper left corner of the screen.

Diddy Kong Racing Coordinate Display.png

  • ROM Checksum (code DODGYROMMER): Displays a checksum of the ROM when entered. (Appears to freeze for a few seconds.)

Diddy Kong Racing Checksum.png

  • Free Balloon (code EOLAOBFENRLONE): Exactly what it says on the tin: Every time you start Adventure Mode with this cheat active, a balloon will be added to the selected save file. This cheat can be entered normally but is never given in the credits. (Anagram of "ONEFREEBALLOON".)
  • EPC Lock Up Display (code EPC): If the game crashes, next time it's powered up it will display a crash report screen, which isn't very usable as it flashes through several pages quickly.
  • Control TT (code 1058732594) and Control Drumstick (code 8649305321): Actually implemented as cheats. When you unlock these characters, these cheats show up in the menu and can be toggled on and off.
  • Mirrored Tracks (code 0986754321): Appears to do the same thing as Adventure 2.

Unused Graphics

A logo for Pro AM 64, likely from an early version of Diddy Kong Racing before Diddy was in the game.

A second Pro AM 64 logo. There is no palette associated with the texture.

DKR-logo small.png
A small, earlier version of the Diddy Kong Racing logo. The palette here is guessed, as one couldn't be found in the ROM.
A German video of a pre-release version (labeled "1.964 VERSION") shows that it was once used on at least one of the arches seen throughout Greenwood Village.

source: Gilgamesh

Dkrkrunch.png Dkrbumperv.png Dkrtiptup.png yea Dkrtimberplaceholder.png Dkrbanjoplaceholder.png Dkrdrumstick.png Dkrpipsy.png
A series of icons used for an early version of the character selection menu. Note that icons for Diddy and T.T. do not exist, while Banjo, Conker, and Timber's icons only have placeholder text. These likely came from a period when the game was called Pro AM 64.

DKR-piratelagoon sign placeholder.png DKR-whalebay sign placeholder.png DKR-crescentisland sign placeholder.png DKR-treasurecaves sign placeholder.png
Crudely-drawn placeholders for the signs in the lobby of Sherbet Island.

DKR-twilightcity sign.png
A sign for Twilight City which matches those found in the Future Fun Land lobby. The sound effect for when T.T. says "Star City" is internally named dean_twilight_snd, so this is likely an early name for that track.

DKR-ttdoor proto.png
An early T.T. Challenge door.

DKR-minimap 07.png DKR-minimap 09.png DKR-minimap 0B.png
2D image digits 07, 09, and 0B are unused HUD maps. 0x07 vaguely resembles Jungle Falls and Greenwood Village - its layout is also quite similar to Thunder Cove, a track exclusive to the DS version of the game, though this might be a coincidence. It's also unknown what track 0x09 could be for, but it could potentially have been for this scrapped track. 0x0B matches the layout of the unfinished jungle temple track.

Dkr redpresent.pngDkr bluepresent.png
Presents hanging from red and blue balloons.

A torch with googly eyes.

DKR-Reed-1.png DKR-Reed-2.png DKR-Reed-3.png
Unused reed objects, which behave like trees.

Dkr trafficlight.png
A traffic light.

Dkr ai.pngDkr fog+-.pngDkr exitsign.pngDkr cloudandsun.pngDkr camera.pngDkr note.pngDkr rr.pngDkr musicnotes.pngDkr musicthing.pngDkr sinewave.pngDKR 17.pngDKR UTurn.pngDKR Bonus1.pngDKR Bonus2.pngDKR Check.pngDKR Exit.pngDKR Hit.pngDKR Midi Fade.pngDKR Mode1.pngDKR Mode2.png
A bunch of development-related signs and symbols.

These icons show up on tracks when viewed in a setup editor as markers determining certain functions of the game, such as checking your progress on a track, silencing/enabling a MIDI channel, or warping the player to another area.

Dkr goldrarecoin.gif
A golden Rare coin. These coins were replaced with bananas to fit this game's atmosphere better, though these would have functioned the same.

Dkr rarer.png Dkr rarea.png Dkr rarer.png Dkr raree.png
Individual letters of "RARE". Likely used instead of the silver N64 coins in the Coin challenges.

Dkr 1player.pngDkr 2player.pngDkr 4player.png
Player selection graphics rendered in a strange font.

DKR AncientLakeSign.png
An early version of the Ancient Lake sign.

DKR BalloonMysteryDoor.png
A door with a silhouette of a balloon that has a question mark on it.

DKR BalloonCheckDoor.png
A door with a balloon that has a check mark over it. Most likely was used when you completed both races and coin challenges.

DKR SpaceTree.png
A graphic that was likely meant to be used in Spacedust Alley.

A fan blade intended for the air vents in Spaceport Alpha.

Textures for an unused skybox.

A sparkly purple gem.

A small pair of eyes.

Early Final
DKR64-tajpadearly.png DKR64-tajpadfinal.png

An earlier version of the Taj pad found in the hub world.


This texture is actually present in the map used in the cutscene that plays when you unlock the first Wizpig race but is never shown on-screen. The map itself is also based on an earlier version of the hub world.

(Source: runehero123, Mattrizzle, Woofmute, MrMartley64, Ferrox)

Extra Localizations

Looks German to me!
Japanese Japanese? Japanese Japanese Japanese.

Aside from the English and French options in the menu in the USA version, there are German and Japanese options, though the latter is not quite finished as it replaces much of the text in the game with placeholders.

Code 81084542 0001 replaces French with German in the menu; 81084542 0003 replaces with Japanese.

Build Dates

A couple of build dates are intact in the ROM.

pmountain	Paul Mountain, Software Engineer
L.Schuneman	Lee Schuneman, Game Director
Version Hex Address Build Message Version Hex Address Build Message
USA V1.0 0xE7D10
1.1605 02/10/97 16:03 pmountain
Version 7.7 29/09/97 15.00 L.Schuneman
USA V1.1 0xE82A0
1.1634 17/10/97 11:19 pmountain
Version 8.0 27/10/97 12.30 L.Schuneman
Europe V1.0 0xE7DA0
1.1605 02/10/97 16:03 pmountain
Version 7.7 29/09/97 15.00 L.Schuneman
Europe V1.1 0xE8330
1.1634 17/10/97 11:19 pmountain
Version 8.0 27/10/97 12.30 L.Schuneman
Japan 0xE9870
1.1634 17/10/97 11:19 pmountain
Version 7.9 14/10/97 L.Schuneman

Unused Default Record Time


Levels in the game that don't contain any time trial records, like the hub world, will use a default record of 3 minutes with the best lap being 1 minute and with the name ABC.

Unused Vehicles

DiddyKongRacing UnusedFlyingVehicle.png

Present in the game are two unused vehicles which can be selected using one of the below GameShark codes.

Version GameShark code Version GameShark code
U V1.0 801269C0 00?? U V1.1 80126F80 00??
E V1.0 80126A50 00?? E V1.1 80127010 00??
J 80128508 00??

Vehicle ID 03 appears as a car without any wheels that can fly like a plane, but unlike the plane, this vehicle doesn't lose altitude when slowing down.

Vehicle ID 04 appears to be a duplicate of the car except you can't control it. In most tracks, it'll just crash the game.

(Source: Ferrox)

Unused Cutscenes

To do:
Compare early cutscenes with their final counterparts.

Early Intros

A couple of early versions of the Adventure mode intro. The first appears to be a very early placeholder which just displays an unused textbox. The second is a slightly earlier version of the intro which has different camera angles and starts the player in a plane instead of a car. It also takes place in the final version of the hub area instead of the earlier version.

Other Cutscenes

  • An early Rare logo screen which just contains a static Rare logo.
  • An early animation of Diddy flying by.
  • A cutscene of a spinning trophy.
  • Early versions of Taj congratulating the player after winning a race.
  • Early versions of the gold balloon spawning.
(Source: David)

Unused Camera Flybys

Three maps in the game contain a camera flyby that can't be seen normally since they're not selectable in the Tracks menu. To see these in-game, use the warp modifier codes on the notes page.

Central Area Walrus Boss Trickytops
(Source: Original TCRF research)


When the game is powered on, it'll check for the correct lockout chip. NTSC cartridges contain a CIC-NUS-6103 and PAL cartridges contain a CIC-NUS-7103. If a different lockout chip is detected, the pause menu will constantly show up once in-game. There doesn't appear to be any further anti-piracy measures, so you could potentially complete the entire game like this.

(Source: Original TCRF research)

Out Of Bounds Objects

Hot Top Volcano


For whatever reason, a normally inaccessible warp exists underneath the starting line in Hot Top Volcano (the green octagon in the screenshot). Where it warps you depends on the version you're playing.

Dragon Forest Boss Track

Underneath the Dragon Forest boss track is an unreachable golden balloon.

There's also an unused spawn point near the balloon (represented by the yellow dinosaur head).

Central Hub World


Behind the large Wizpig head in the main hub area is some out of bounds level geometry which is normally never shown in-game. By reversing towards the wall, it's possible to see a small portion. It lacks any collision, so you'll just go right through it.

(Source: Original TCRF research)

Regional Differences

Spaceport Alpha Wall Textures

International Japan
DKR-tunnelU.png DKR-tunnelJ.png
  • The wall textures for the tunnel in Spaceport Alpha are different in the Japanese version of the game.

Spaceport Alpha Pillar

International Japan
DKR64-spaceportalphapillarUS.png DKR64-spaceportalphapillarJP.png
  • For whatever reason, the top of one of the pillars in Spaceport Alpha was removed in the Japanese version. The collision was removed as well making it possible to go out of bounds by flying through the top of the pillar.


DKR64usres.png DKR64-eures.png
  • The North American and Japanese versions of the game render at 320x237 while the European version renders at 320x261. Only certain HUD elements take advantage of the higher resolution since the view is just stretched vertically.

Revisional Differences

  • In Spaceport Alpha, there's a long tunnel where many missiles are being fired from both of the walls and the end of the tunnel. The missiles fired from the walls were removed in 1.1 making this section of the track significantly easier.
  • After defeating Trickytops or Bluey for the first time, Taj tells you a gameplay tip. In 1.0, Taj speaks during the accompanying jingle, but in 1.1, his voice clip is delayed until afterwards.
  • The infamous "wrong warp" glitch from Hot Top Volcano works differently between versions. In 1.0, the game crashes once you go through the loading zone, but in 1.1, it warps you to the main hub world, loading the data from file 1. In the Japanese version of the game, the loading zone warps you to either the main hub world or Dragon Forest, with the latter either putting you into a car or plane. This glitch can be heavily abused to beat the game in under an hour.
Version 1.0 Version 1.1
  • In Star City, a neon sign of the sun was replaced with the N64 logo and some squares in the 1.1 version.
Version 1.0 Version 1.1
DKR64-kilogo1.png DKR64-kilogo2.png
  • The Killer Instinct logo in Star City was removed.
  • A space ship graphic in Star City doesn't animate in 1.1.
Version 1.0 Version 1.1
DKR1 Vent.png DKR2 Vent.png
  • The vent's graphics were changed to a somewhat glitchy blue texture.
Version 1.0 Version 1.1
DKR1 Wall.png DKR2 Wall.png
  • A wall was added near the vent to prevent players from going the wrong way.
Version 1.0 Version 1.1
DKR1 Hole.png DKR2 Hole.png
  • The hole directly behind the starting line was removed likely so that it wouldn't confuse players.


Diddy's Tail


In the player select screen, Diddy Kong has a tail, but it can not be seen due to the camera angle.

Pterodactyl Boss

The pterodactyl model is internally labelled "Terryboss" and is grouped together with the other bosses in memory. This suggests that it was originally intended to be a boss! This may explain the game's unused pterodactyl sound effects, as well as the unused snowy version of the Dino Domain boss track. The model has six animations (idle, accelerating, running, taking flight, flying, taking damage) - exactly the same order and type of animation used for Smokey the Dragon (minus a talking animation).

Internal Filenames

The object corresponding to Taj is known as Parkwarden internally.

TT seems to have originally been called Boost, based on the internal name of his adventure mode model.

Several music tracks have internal names that suggest they were once meant for a different purpose:

  • The Jungle Falls music has the name boss_1a.
  • The snippet of music played when Taj tells you a secret after beating a world is named sndlap. (Second Lap?)
  • The fanfare played when obtaining a Wizpig Amulet Piece is named finlp_1b. (Final Lap?)

Some sound effects have interesting internal names:

  • The spike ball spawn sound is named jump_02.
  • Many of T.T.'s voice clips are prefixed with dean, named after Dean Smith, the voice of T.T.
  • Some of T.T.'s voice clips also contain the name ticktock.
  • Many of Taj's voice clips contain the name warden.
  • Three of Taj's voice clips used in the intro are named bahji03, bahji05, and bahji09 suggesting that Bahji was possibly an early name for Taj.
  • Tricky's voice clips are prefixed with csuth which is short for Chris Sutherland, the voice of Tricky.
  • The voice clip of T.T. saying "Diddy Kong Racing" on the title screen is named pro_am64.
  • The voice clip of T.T. saying "Haunted Woods" is named dean_jewel suggesting that the name for Haunted Woods changed at some point during development.
  • As mentioned above, the voice clip of T.T. saying "Star City" is named dean_twilight.

Title Sequence

All areas from the title screen sequence are on the same map, albeit extremely spread out.

Boulder Canyon Height Limit

Boulder Canyon has a height limit for planes even though only hovercrafts can be selected in that track. It's possible that planes were going to be selectable as well in that track.

Spaceport Alpha Alcove


Next to the starting line in Spaceport Alpha is an empty alcove that serves no real purpose. It's possible that Future Fun Land was going to have a battle mini game as well like the first four areas and that the key to unlock the door would've been placed here. The DS remake has a Power-Up Token placed inside this alcove.

Boulder Canyon Drawbridge

The drawbridge in Boulder Canyon is internally named "hittester" suggesting that it was used as a test object.

(Source: Original TCRF research)


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 GameFAQs
  2. Issue #105 (Febuary 1998), page 53