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An agreement is reached in a long-running dispute. About Donkey Kong.| GuyWhoKnowsThings

In the 1980s, it seemed as if everyone with a spare quarter was playing the arcade game Donkey Kong, climbing ramps and stairs while avoiding barrels thrown by a giant ape.

For most players, the video game provided a few minutes of excitement before the inevitable defeat. But a handful of top players had the superhuman ability to rescue Pauline, the damsel in distress, time and time again, earning one of the highest scores not only in their own game room but in the entire world.

A settlement has now been reached in a long-running disagreement over disputed world records set by arcade player Billy Mitchell.

While the arcade boom of the 1980s faded, some players continued in their quest for high scores, often playing on their own machines in basements and garages, long after most players had passed to personal computers and home consoles.

People not immersed in that world first got the chance to hear about Mitchell in the critically acclaimed 2007 documentary “The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters.” It told the story of Steve Wiebe and his quest to be recognized as the first person to reach one million points in the game, surpassing a record set by Mr. Mitchell years earlier.

Mr. Mitchell wore the black hat in that film, which portrayed him, The New York Times review saidas “a pretentious and manipulative pig.”

He successfully challenged Mr. Wiebe's high score and set a new one himself, but that achievement remained under a cloud in the film. The fight for records didn't end there, with Mitchell eventually posting even higher scores between 2007 and 2010. But Twin Galaxies, which tracks and records video game achievements, invalidated Mr. Mitchell's scores in 2018 after an investigation.

According to the group's rules, record-breakers must play their games using an original circuit board from a Donkey Kong machine. The Twin Galaxies investigation found that two of Mr Mitchell's record scores had used a modified machine.

Mitchell swore at the time that the fight was not over and filed a defamation lawsuit. That lawsuit was finally settled last week.

“I am relieved and satisfied to have reached this resolution after a nearly six-year ordeal and look forward to continuing my unfinished business elsewhere,” Mitchell said. said on social media. He referred to the records of him as if they had been “refunded.”

Still, Twin Galaxies said Mr. Mitchell's scores would not be added again to the main leaderboard that tracks ongoing records and that he was still excluded from the Twin Galaxies competition. Rather, he said they would be published in a “historical database.” He also said he would “remove from online viewing” a thread on the site discussing the dispute and “all related statements and articles.”

Twin Galaxies says this historical database is “copied verbatim from the system obtained during the Twin Galaxies acquisition in 2014. It serves as a legacy, unmodified snapshot that preserves performances and achievements prior to current TG ownership and modern adjudication protocols.

He said historical database “remains static and sealed. No new presentations or modifications can be made.”

David Tashroudian, Twin Galaxies lawyer, he told technology news site Ars Technica“There were going to be an excessive amount of costs involved and both sides were facing a lot of uncertainty at trial and wanted to resolve the matter on their own terms without putting it before a jury.”

Mr. Mitchell's restored scores include some in the range of 1,040,000 to 1,060,000. But time passes and players improve.

The intense and long-lasting dispute, sometimes bitter, focused on brands that have long since been surpassed. The current record, as reported by Twin Galaxies, belongs to Robbie Lakeman. There are 1,272,800.

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