People lining up to play ‘Harambe Kong’ arcade game

BOISE, ID (KXAN) —  At an arcade bar in Boise, Idaho, people are crowding around and lining up to put quarters into a game called Harambe Kong.

It’s similar to Donkey Kong, but this new game lets you play as Harambe, the gorilla that was shot and killed by a Cincinnati zoo keeper after a toddler fell into his cage. In the game, Harambe runs and jumps around to catch falling food for points, but if he touches a child, it’s game over in a dramatic and bloody fashion.

Boise programmer Tyler Sailing has been working on the game in his free time for more than a year and partnered with a friend and Space Bar to give it the full arcade experience.

“It’s fun, it’s great to produce something that people enjoy,” Saling tells KIVI. “It does validate my work and I want to continue that.”

While a lot of gamers are having fun with “Harambe Kong,” not everyone is entertained.

“I guess it’s too lifelike — while other arcade games are fictional, like in Gauntlet you’re not running around, but this did,” gamer Keith Breon said.

Saling said he isn’t trying to offend anyone and in actuality is trying to express his dislike for zoos, which grew from Harambe’s death.

“I think someone who is ultimately offended by this game may need question themselves a little bit and maybe question their morals — why am I offended by a pixalized gorilla being shot,” Saling said.

The game’s creator hopes to expand the game to an app as well as for X-Box. KIVI reports he is also getting ready for people to download in the next few months. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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