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Quite a Rare treat: Yooka-Laylee released

Third-person Banjoer or Kazooie 'em up

Rarelike 3D platformer Yooka-Laylee [official site] is now out, recreating that old N64 style of adventuring - both the good and the bad. It's bright and cheery and DID YOU KNOW that the game's title, formed by combining the names of its chameleon and bat protagonists, sounds like "ukulele"? I only spotted that last week. Attentive. Anyway! The Yooka-Laylee team at Playtonic Games included a number of key folks from Rare's Banjo-Kazooie games and the game's utterly, proudly going for that sort of thing. See for yourself in the launch trailer:

Pip said in Her Wot I Think:

"It's a testament to both the enduring appeal of Banjo-Kazooie and the faithful nature of the sequel that at some point I gave up calling it Yooka-Laylee and just started referring to the game as 'Banjo-Kazoodle' as I used to when I was younger. You can probably also get a sense for how much Banjo-Kazoodle I played on the N64 and how successfully Yooka-Laylee recreates that mindset by the fact I kept accidentally trying to perform old moves like the Beak Barge and Bill Drill to solve problems. It’s like falling through a dimensional rift and playing an old favourite – familiar but different."

She dug it, in short. This faithfulness to the '90s isn't all good news, as it also brings bad boss battles and other annoying bits. Pip called out camera problems too, though a patch whipped up after review copies went out has supposedly improved that. We didn't get to see the results of that pre-launch but hey, now it's out for everyone.

Yooka-Laylee is out for Windows, Mac, and Linux at £34.99/39,99€/$39.99 on Steam, GOG, and the Humble Store.

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Alice O'Connor

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When not writing news, Alice may be found in the sea.

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