Donkey Kong is a fictional gorilla appearing in the Donkey Kong and Mario video game franchises. A popular character, he has appeared in many video games. Donkey Kong was Mario's first opponent in Nintendo's popular 1981 arcade game, Donkey Kong. Since then he has starred in his own series of games, starting with 1994's Donkey Kong Country for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, and remains an important character in the spin-off games of the Mario series, having since been replaced by Bowser as Mario's arch nemesis. DK debuted at the same time as Mario, and he still spars with Mario on occasion, appearing as a playable character in the Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. series, and is the primary antagonist in the Mario vs. Donkey Kong games. In 1981, Nintendo was pursuing a license to make a game based on the Popeye comic strip.