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1980s court documents show Nintendo considered 'Kong Dong' and 'Kong the Kong' before settling on the name Donkey Kong

In the early 1980s Universal was looking to get in on the videogames market, and its hard-nosed president Sid Sheinberg particularly noted the success of Nintendo's Donkey Kong. Sheinberg was a lawyer by training and, looking at Donkey Kong, he saw a potential infringement on Universal's copyright for King Kong: nevermind the name, both had gorillas and a damsel in distress. 

Sheinberg felt Universal was owed and began putting the squeeze on several videogame companies over King Kong, including Nintendo, but the Donkey Kong creator was the only one that didn't buckle. Instead Nintendo fought and, in a case that ran from 1982 with a final appeal in 1984, won a decisive victory: Donkey Kong did not infringe on Universal's copyright, and remained Nintendo's character.

As with any legal case on this scale, the documentation around it is voluminous and held in the National Archives. Several years ago gaming historian Norman Caruso visited the archives to look through, and posted scans of some curiosities he found therein (which were recently recirculated by Supper Mario Broth, and picked up by Eurogamer).

One amusing wrinkle about the case was that creator Shigeru Miyamoto, honest to perhaps a fault, admitted he'd considered the name King Kong at first, though this was offset by the argument that in Japan «kong» was used as a generic term for gorilla. Among Caruso's findings are a page of further alternative names that, per Nintendo, were considered as alternatives to Donkey Kong. 

Funny Kong; Kong the Kong; Jack Kong; Funky Kong; Bill Kong; Steel Kong; Giant Kong; Big Kong; Kong Down; Kong Dong (!); Mr. Kong; Custom Kong; Kong Chase; Kong Boy; Kong Man; Kong Fighter; Wild Kong; Rookie Kong; Kong Holiday; and finally, Donkey Kong. 

Kong Dong is the ludicrous suggestion that leaps out most, although the real stunner here is perhaps that Funky Kong, first introduced in Rare's Donkey Kong Country series, has roots going back further than I'd ever thought. There are many

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