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Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Anyone who dabbles a bit in the world of retrogaming is impossible to have come across at least once Banjo – Kazooie, a cornerstone title of the good old Nintendo 64

It was the 1998 and enthusiasts from all over the world were enjoying the big headlines which had come out that year on the Nintendo 64. So there were the futuristic rides of F-Zero Xplatformers such as the curious Glover, the principle of an important series such as Mario Party (although it was only released in Japan that year) and masterpieces that defy eras such as the colossal The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

In all this set of retrogaming masterpieces, however, he added himself in the summer of that year Banjo – Kazooieby Rare, a title that would have conquered the hearts of fans in no time at all. So let’s start with the rediscovery of this very important title for the 64-bit console of the famous Kyoto House!

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Where have I seen you before?

It was the magical years of the SNES and Rare was working on a game called Project Dream whose protagonist was supposed to be a named human Edison accompanied on his adventure by a rabbit and a dog in the guise of supporting characters. L’bear he would have been another secondary figure.

Anyway, before we get to the bear – bird combinationhe had to pass water under the bridge and also the console since, Project Dream, required too much time and therefore moved its implementation from SNES to Nintendo 64.

But before we get to the title of this special, the couple that breaks out would appear, indeed only the bear, in Diddy Kong Racingalso signed by Rare, together with the very violent and very incorrect squirrel Conker (in that case far from his crazy adventures of Conker’s Bad Fur Day). Soon the rodent would have “upset” the players, but that’s another story.

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Back to us, it is possible notice a couple of similarities between this Rare must have and two authentic mammoth masterpieces of the 64 bit era of Nintendo, namely Super Mario 64 and the already mentioned The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

With our trusted plumber, the bear-feather pairing therefore shares a constantly evolving central hub from which you have access to the various levels, the need to explore the worlds multiple times after unlocking i upgrades and a level design which sees horror, Caribbean, wild and so on settings come alive on the screen.

As for one of the best-known adventures of the good Link, anyone who has played that title knows very well what a thorn in the side the fairy Navi was. Here the pennuta will not be just a simple assistant since it will play a fundamental part in the acquisition of skills and pace of play sometimes becoming even more foul-mouthed and less annoying than the catchphrase “hey, listen!”.

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

The story and the characters, between horrifying witches and talking animals – Retrogaming: Banjo – Kazooie

It seems like any other day, the sun is shining high in the sky and there doesn’t seem to be a problem on the horizon for the moment. In fact, this cheerful mood is not perceived as such by the wicked witch Gruntilda which, like a new witch of snow-whitequestion his bubbling cauldron to know Who is the fairest of them all.

At first he will answer that it is her, to remember that her name is taken from an English children’s showbut his greenish face changes expression as the cauldron corrects itself and states that instead, Tooty is the most beautiful. Obviously Gruntilda doesn’t take it very well and decides to kidnap the little bear Tooty to “steal” her beauty through a complex machine. Mounting her flying broom, the witch therefore leaves her cave and reaches the valley where Tooty is playing with the Bottles mole who will helplessly witness the kidnapping.

The older brother in all of this, or one of the protagonists of our story, he is sleeping soundlybut when he leaves the house he will find a very worried Bottles who will inform him of the tragic situation, and will also provide explanations on the various moves during the tutorial and the other levels. Of course, more help will be needed therefore it is here that the crackling Kazooie comes into play who, perched inside her backpack, will help our hero make his way through the various levels, collect the collectible elements and reach the final battle with Gruntilda.

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Game modes, up to the last level – Retrogaming: Banjo – Kazooie

It will therefore be a journey through an infinite number of colorful and really interesting worlds and levels that mix cartoon atmospheres with a sense of humor. In the course of these it will therefore be possible to meet the curious and colorful Jinjothere are always a lot of them to collect in each level, the Gruntilda’s good sisterwhich in each dialogue will add more and more disgusting details about the witch, and especially it Mumbo Jumbo sorcerer which will literally transform the dynamic duo in such a way that you can get to the end of the level by unlocking all the secrets and so on.

Also the aforementioned will not be missing Bottles who, after a lively exchange of views with the bird in the backpack, will instruct the pairing of heroes on the skills learned in that level (in total there are more than 20 of them) and will therefore help players complete the level by also allowing flying and spitting eggs. But what exactly needs to be done?

As in any good self-respecting platform, Super Mario 64 in the first place for example to stay in line with the period, the console and the style of play, you will have to collect golden notes scattered throughout the level and puzzle pieces (sounds like a tongue twister I know). In this way you can complete the paintings scattered around Gruntilda’s lair and thus access the next levels until the final battle.

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Among the various collectible elements there will be no shortage silver skulls and tender and colorful Jinjo scattered a bit everywhere in the different worlds and then, in addition to the Bottles bespectacled advicelet’s not forget about the Mumbo Jumbo sorcerer! The collected skulls will go to him which, if there are enough of them, will cause that cast its spell and transform the duo in a crocodile or in a termite, for example, to better face every single challenge and collect everything that can be collected in a level.

Before moving on to another little riddle though, Do you know what Jinjo and Mumbo Jumbo have in common? I’m all voiced by composer Grant Kirkhope, recently heard at work in Mario + Rabbids: Sparks of Hope, who had already worked on another fundamental game of Rare, namely, GoldenEye 007!

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Legacy, quotes and sequels not always up to par – Retrogaming: Banjo – Kazooie

Obviously, when a game like this has had the success it deserves, the best move is to “Beat the iron until it is hot” with a sequel like Banjo – Tooie which is set shortly after the events of this first chapter. The problem is that the following chapters have been quite disappointing, we have already talked about it in more detail here, also because Rare was acquired by Microsoft and the spirit that animated the games of the “Big R” weakened a lot!

However, this did not stop the legacy of this crazy duo who also made an appearance in Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racingcome skin su Minecraft and also as a playable character on Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (presence confirmed at theE3 of 2019). It was also possible to replay this exceptional adventure some time before its arrival on Nintendo Switch Online with the Rare Replay collection! Among the spiritual heirs we must not forget Yooka-Laylee who has revised the work of many faces already known in the Rare environment.

Furthermore, it should not be forgotten that a user on YouTube, baptized with the name of Project Dream in honor of the prototype, he then released a series of videos where remastered the trailer and some levels in its own way by today’s standards. Wouldn’t it be nice to try the game again under this graphic guise?

Banjo – Kazooie: when retro gaming is a masterpiece

Why recover it? Isn’t that obvious?

Until a few years ago the only option available to legally recover this title was to find one of his own Working cartridge for Nintendo 64 on a market stall or among the various products on eBay, currently it is also possible to find boxed ones around 30 Euros, but with the update of the Nintendo Switch Online catalogue there are no more excuses!

Exactly, for those who have missed it or have not yet looked through it, among the games for Nintendo 64 you will therefore also find this first adventure of the duo. An adventure, that of Banjo – Kazooiethat oozes nostalgia and experimentation from every pixel as well as a massive dose of retrogaming. Taking all responsibility for the case, I would say that this platformer from more than twenty years ago has nothing to envy to the modern ones, or to other titles of that glorious era, but obviously to believe me, it’s better to play more than one game on your Switch. You will not regret it!

If you want then recover other titles from the Grande N, and beyond, at the best price ever, then we advise you to click here, while, to be constantly updated on the great world of video games of yesterday and today, we are waiting for you on TechGameWorld.com!