Steve Wiebe is speaking out as another record-keeping body has stripped away the accomplishments of his ‘The King Of Kong’ rival. On Thursday, video game legend Billy Mitchell was banned from competition and his records were wiped off the books after video game organization Twin Galaxies determined the proverbial villian of the 2007 documentary was cheating.
The two gamers battled to be the first to reach one million points in Donkey Kong, a feat Mitchell appeared to do first. But Thursday’s news changed all that. The accusations against Mitchell are a bit complicated, but it appears that his records were not set on a true arcade machine, using a MAME emulator rather than an arcade circuit board, thus making his achievements invalid.
Given the rivalry between the two competitors, it’s inevitable that Wiebe was reached to discuss what’s become of Mitchell and what he thought about the coda to their battles documented in the film.
Wiebe sat down with Variety and talked about the “surreal” experience of being back in the news again now that he’s found out
“The more I thought about it from the ‘King of Kong’ days, it all seemed to make sense now,” Wiebe said. “All the things that were happening at the time… like why he didn’t come out and play me, and why he was inciting whose records were going to be authenticated and who’s were going to be dropped. ‘King of Kong’ referenced that that he was a referee and on the board of directors. When that leaked out, it started to make more sense.”
Wiebe isn’t the record-holder for Donkey Kong anymore, though he did become the first to officially score one million points in the classic cabinet game with Mitchell’s disqualification.
“I’m not the champ any more, but getting recognition for being the first to a million is a great consolation,” Wiebe said. “That’s what I was really bummed out about 11 years ago.”
Wiebe said he’s not one to dance on graves, and he knows there are still a lot of people who support Mitchell.
“Billy will have his turn to say something in response, for now I’m just in awe,” Wiebe said.
On Friday, Kotaku reported that Guiness World Records would wipe Mitchell’s records from their archives as well, as Twin Galaxies is their source for those records. With Variety reporting a number of Donkey Kong related TV and film products may have gotten “new life” through the news, it may not be the end of Wiebe and Mitchell’s newfound time in the modern spotlight, either.