The King is dead. After a thorough investigation following accusations of cheating, all the scores belonging to former Donkey Kong record-setter Billy Mitchell have been stripped from Twin Galaxies' records.
"After many months of researching, Twin Galaxies' administration has determined the dispute made by Jeremy Young (@xelnia) to be accepted," writes Twin Galaxes' Alex McCumbers. "Alongside this, all of Billy Mitchell's scores have been removed from Twin Galaxies' leaderboards."
Twin Galaxies published an official summary of its investigation earlier today. The wider gaming public learned Twin Galaxies planned to scrutinize Mitchell's scores in early February after Donkey Kong high-score judge Jeremy "Xelnia" Young filed a dispute claim against the supposed records. Young claimed three of the scores (including the 1,047,200 point game made famous by the documentary King of Kong) weren't produced on an actual Donkey Kong arcade machine.
It appears Twin Galaxies agrees, at least in part. "The taped Donkey Kong score performances of 1,047,200 (the King of Kong 'tape'), 1,050,200 (the Mortgage Brokers score) that were historically used by Twin Galaxies to substantiate those scores and place them in the database were not produced by the direct feed output of an original unmodified Donkey Kong Arcade PCB," the report states, though it adds one of Mitchell's scores is still being examined.
Twin Galaxies also can't confirm Mitchell recorded his record-setting performances using MAME. Though Young voiced his suspicion about Mitchell possibly using the arcade emulator (he backs up his accusations with footage comparing how a title running on MAME loads differently than a game running on actual arcade hardware), Twin Galaxies explains it'd need to rule out every other arcade game emulator before concluding Mitchell used MAME-and the process for doing so would be too time-intensive. "This would mean testing all other emulators other than MAME across all other platforms to eliminate the possibility that a different emu was used," Twin Galaxies' report states. "It would also mean testing visual effects software and anything else we can think of to be definitively certain. This kind of testing is beyond the scope of the dispute case needs."
Twin Galaxies is primarily concerned whether Mitchell filmed his footage using an official Donkey Kong arcade cabinet, as per the organization's competitive conditions. Lacking satisfactory evidence Mitchell played by the rules, Twin Galaxies is evicting the big monkey from the high-score jungle. He's banned from competing on leaderboards in the future, too.
"With this ruling Twin Galaxies can no longer recognize Billy Mitchell as the 1st million point Donkey Kong record holder," the report concludes. "According to our findings, Steve Wiebe would be the official 1st million point record holder. Thanks again to all who contributed time, effort and expertise to this case."