Like many Wii U games, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze supports off-TV play. But if you happen to be playing regularly – on TV that is – the controller will go dark. Retro implemented the functionality in order to “save battery.”
While we’re on the topic of controllers, Tropical Freeze will support a whole bunch of them. You can use the GamePad, Pro Controller, Wiimote and nunchuck combo, or Wiimote by itself (sideways).