An Uneven Walk In Memory Lane – Yooka-Laylee Review (Switch)
By Jonathan Balofsky On 11 Jan, 2018 At 11:06 PM | Categorized As Featured, News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Like many, I miss the days of classic 3D platformers such as Banjo-Kazooie and others from Rare. I was therefore delighted when several former Rare employees for Playtonic Games and announced Yooka-Laylee as a spiritual sequel. My eagerness for the game was lessened after hearing about the issues many had after launch, but I was determined to make my own opinion.

Well, Yooka-Laylee is certainly an interesting experience from start to finish, but I do not know if that is a good thing. The game starts out strong, with many callbacks to its spiritual ancestor, but issues arise almost immediately. To begin, I must address the camera issues that have plagued many. The camera feels like its taken from the N64 era and not in a good way. It interferes with the game and causes you to miss jumps and attacks. There is an option to change the camera movements, but this only helps a bit. But the camera isn’t the only issue, as aiming projectiles is much harder than it needs to be. I can never aim in the right direction and the projectiles constantly go where I was not aiming. Add to that, the fact that in several areas there are platforming scenarios that combine these two problems, and you have a recipe for frustration.

It is not all bad though, as the spirit of 90’s Rare is here. I do feel there is a good game that could have been, but the full vision was simply not realized. There were several moments such as certain boss battles, where I really did get a nostalgic feeling for Banjo-Kazooie, but then the uneven parts hit and I was ripped from the past. I feel Yooka-Laylee could have been a great game but perhaps it simply had too much pressure on the developers. Taken as a standalone game, it isn’t perfect but is more forgivable besides the camera and projectile issues, and could have been better received if not for expectations.

That being said, I find I have a hard time putting the game down. I do not know what it is, as I am often frustrated by it, but will keep returning to it in the end. I genuinely was not expecting to react to Yooka-Laylee that way, and that tells me that even if the game is flawed it definitely has that special something that keeps you from staying away. Maybe it is the amazing music from Grant Kirkhope that expertly recreates the mood of BK while adding in its own sense of identity, but the game does have a charm that works for it. In the end, I know I will keep coming back to this and that is an accomplishment for any game.

 

 

Disclaimer: A review code was provided

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