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YMMV / Yooka-Laylee

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  • 8.8: Early reviews were decidedly mixed-to-positive (with Metacritic scores ranging from the high 60s to the low 70s), but Jim Sterling's highly negative 2/10 score stood out as being the most divisive among fans looking forward to the game; even some readers who agreed with his criticisms felt that his score was too low for a game that was still complete and functional.
  • Author's Saving Throw: A couple of the earlier patches addressed the performance issues on the Xbox One and PS4 versions, and a day one patch hopes to help with the much-criticised camera issues.
  • Awesome Music: Produced by notable ex-Rare composers David Wise and Grant Kirkhope, the crowdfunding campaign page gave backers an idea of what sort of music to expect in the game and it is undoubtedly in their own distinct styles.
    • "Jungle World" from Kirkhope is evocative of the playful Banjo-Kazooie-esque themes like Grunty's Lair or Mumbo's Mountain, while Wise's contribution, "Jungle Challenge", is closer to the work he did for Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, with a more tropical and up-tempo flavor. For a number of backers, the music previews are what convinced them to sign on.
    • A later update introduced a new song, Glacier World. It's a charming little piece that's evocative of several ice level themes from the Banjo-Kazooie games.
    • Another track by David Wise known as Kartos Challenge is extremely catchy and whimsical. It wouldn't be out of place in a Donkey Kong Country game.
    • Up 'N' Ova is particularly amazing for an 8-bit tune.
    • Final Beeting is, fittingly enough for the final boss music, ridiculously epic.
  • Broken Base:
    • The orchestral soundtrack stretch goal has received mixed opinions. Many enjoy the MIDI music used in the original Banjo games and want that trend to continue here, though Grant Kirkhope specified on Twitter that Banjo-Kazooie did indeed use real instruments, simply downsized in audio quality. (As opposed to FM Synthesis, used by many SNES and early N64 games)
    • Even the jabs at Nuts & Bolts found in promotional material have caused this; are they funny or groan-inducing? Some have even pointed out that the jokes may not hold up well as time goes on, while some others don't mind.
    • The inclusion of Shovel Knight as a guest character. While many are happy to see the crossover, others feel that the character has been appearing in too many indie games and doesn't fit in with the world of Yooka-Laylee or its characters.
    • Reviews of the game have been very mixed. Some praise the game for essentially being a modern-day Nintendo 64 platformer while others criticize it for the exact same reason, citing that gaming has moved on from nearly twenty years ago.
    • The player base has unfortunately been much the same as the reviewers. You either love the game for being a true successor to Banjo-Kazooie and even considered it better in some aspects, or hate it for being a lackluster game that feels like a cheap version of Banjo-Kazooie with none of the charm. There is remarkably little to no middle ground. This only got worse when A Hat in Time got released to much more positive (and much less mixed) critical reception, causing the latter group of the player base to almost immediately flock over to its fandom practically out of pure spite, turning what could have been a nice example of Friendly Fandoms due to the various similarities between the two games (mainly the fact that they were both inspired by N64-era "collectathon" 3D platformers and were funded by Kickstarter) into a rather ugly example of Fandom Rivalry instead...
    • Was removing JonTron's cameo from the game shortly before its release because of the controversial political statements he made during the months leading up to it a good or bad decision on Playtonic's part? To say there have been many flame wars over this would be an understatement...
  • Demonic Spiders: Of all the Ghost Writers, Ann-Gree can be the most bothersome to get, why? Because in order to even collect her you have to lure her attack without getting hit, then hit her when she's yellow three times to collect her. Only problem is that she's REALLY quick when she lunges at you and is unpredictable on when she'll move to hit you, and you could be desperately trying to get her to move without getting hit only to be taken by surprise and losing health in the process, and even if you do get her to move, she doesn't stay yellow for very long and you have to start from square one.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Capital B is beloved by the fandom. He may be a fat bee man, but you can't deny he's a very snazzy dresser.
  • Ear Worm: The Yooka-Laylee Rap, a catchy, deliberately cheesy as Limburger homage to the DK Rap.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Dr. Puzz, which isn't surprising considering that the character she's a successor to, Mumbo Jumbo, was a darkhorse himself. Many fans enjoy her weird yet still appealing design. And unlike Mumbo, who was rather cynical, Dr. Puzz is genuinely nice and helpful, even if her transformations are never quite what she intends them to be.
  • Fandom Rivalry: Bit of a minor one with Banjo-Kazooie. While they're mostly Friendly Fandoms as this is the Spiritual Successor to that franchise, a portion of the Banjo-Kazooie fanbase is rather annoyed/disheartened that this game more or less means "R.I.P. Banjo-Kazooie".
  • Friendly Fandoms:
    • Due to their Kickstarters being held at around the same time period, a lot of people who backed Yooka-Laylee also backed Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. Both of them were widely successful.
    • A number of other Kickstarter funded games also share a good chunk of fans, which include Mighty No. 9, Shantae: Half-Genie Hero, and Shovel Knight, the last of whom is even showing up as a Special Guest!
    • Good relations are developing with fans of Super Mario Odyssey, which also aims to modernize the "collect-a-thon" platformer just like this game. However, with some of the mixed reception stemming from Yooka's throwback nature, some of this has degenerated into a Fandom Rivalry which proclaims that Odyssey will be the "true" modernization of explorative platformers.
  • Game-Breaker: One of the late-game abilities is the ability to fly, and, unlike Banjo-Kazooie, you can activate it at any point and anytime. Naturally, this allows many platforming sequences to be outright skipped, making quite a few Pagies in earlier worlds, that were designed to be obtainable without the ability, nigh effortless for the player to go back and get if they haven't already. The few challenges in earlier worlds that require the ability become something of a Guide Dang It! by extension just because of how unexpected it is — like getting to the top of the temple in Tribalstack Tropics.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The game is packed with jokes about game development, or modern trends in the industry, and even lampoons its own Kickstarter campaign at one point. Given the game's mixed reaction, it can come off rather awkward.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • This moment from the end of the Kickstarter video becomes a bit funnier, considering how the Kickstarter campaign met its funding goal in under an hour.
      Laylee: Can we get out yet, Yooka? We've been in here for ages!
      Yooka: Not until we reach our stretch goals, Laylee! Sit tight!
    • In an interview with Kirkhope, the main reason for Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts' major genre shift was because a Microsoft executive said that people wouldn't be interested in 3-D platformers any longer and wanted something different. Taking a look at how the Kickstarter took off, while Nuts & Bolts tanked in sales, that executive could not have been any more wrong.
      • Gets even funnier when the alpha build shown at E3 2015 makes a jab at Nuts & Bolts.
        Sign: I'd love to offer directions but unfortunately I can't see behind my own head. If only I had a pair of wheels... Maybe the final game will have a fun vehicle building mechanic?
    • One of the loading screen messages states that "If cartridges were still popular, this level would've loaded by now!" Good thing there's a cartridge-based system among the platforms this game is being released on!
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • Playtonic's decision to cancel the Wii U port of the game met with some heavy pushback from some of the Kickstarter backers. What probably ticked them off the most was that Playtonic had claimed that the Wii U was in fact the game's lead platform and that they were developing it themselves as a labor of love, and gave no indication of any problems with the port prior to its sudden cancellation, which made many people suspicious as to the motives behind the cancellation. This got worse when the news came out that backers who opt in for the Switch version will not be eligible for a physical copy (even if the amount they pledged promised them one as their reward). Because apparently, outside the "64-bit Cart" release of the PC version that's only available to certain high tier backers, only the PS4 and Xbox One versions are getting a physical release.
    • As of late March 2017, let's just say that the game's Steam community forum and Playtonic's forums have not been a pretty sight ever since the controversy over the removal of JonTron's cameo... Given the situation, Playtonic may have found themselves in a Morton's Fork, given that either option (keeping Jon or removing Jon) risked controversy.
    • In response to Jon's removal, some have went as far as to make threads asking if it's possible for them to get refunds, while a very vocal minority want to get said refunds via chargeback as a form of protest. It didn't help that Playtonic's response in many of these cases was to ban or lock the threads in question on both sites, with an official statement on their website that no, there would be no refunds.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: Despite the overall positive reaction to this game basically being Banjo-Threeie, there are still some people who criticize the game for looking too similar to Banjo-Kazooie (right down to the font used in the logo, the designs/abilities of the characters, and the general sound of the music) and wish that the developers were doing more to give the game its own unique identity and style while still evolving and reviving the genre. Upon release, many of the mixed reviews for the game stemmed from the game being too similar to a 90s game (right down to the Camera Screw) rather than demonstrating how much 3D platforming had evolved over the past two decades.
  • Memetic Mutation: JonTron being removed for his vile comments regarding not liking The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. He just had to be removed.
  • Most Annoying Sound: The voice-clips are viewed by some players as being more annoying, especially since you can't fast forward the same way you did in the originals.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Take a look at Vendi here and try to honestly say she's not real creepy-looking. At least she's friendly.
    • The game even acknowledges this — one of Dr. Quack's quiz questions refers to her as "terrifying"!
  • Overshadowed by Controversy: It's very difficult to mention anything about the game without arguments over Playtonic's decision to remove Jontron, the game's mixed professional reviews, or the lack of a physical release for the Nintendo Switch port eventually ensuing.
  • Polished Port: The Nintendo Switch version has been hailed as a great port of the game, with fewer framerate issues than the other console versions, and less Camera Screw. It helps that Playtonic themselves handled the port rather than outsourcing it to Team17 like they did with the PS4 and Xbox One versions.
  • Porting Disaster: Playtonic only worked on the PC and Switch versions of the game, while the Xbox One and Playstation 4 ports were handled by Team17. As a result, the Xbox and Playstation ports were marred by performance issues and inconsistent framerates that were not present in the PC and Switch versions. Playtonic has announced plans to release patches to fix these problems.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • The game has been described in reviews as a 90s Collectathon Platformer, warts and all. One of said warts involves the camera that feels like it's constantly fighting you for control.
      • This wart, however, was iced with the introduction of the "Manual" camera in the game's first major update (which is included in the Switch port), making the camera much easier to control for those who aren't satisfied with the "Classic" camera.
    • Some of the minigames, particularly Rextro Sixtyfourus's arcade games, have been a point of contention.
    • As opposed to the dialogue going into fast forward in Banjo Tooie, fast forwarding the dialogue here merely skips to the end. Fortunately, the very same patch that fixed the camera issues reworked the dialogue skipping to be like it was in Tooie.
    • The Quack-Fire Quizzes. While there are only a couple of them, they are mandatory to progress through the game, they take forty freaking forevers to get through because of the dialogue being unskippable with no way to speed it upnote  even with the two-point bonus for answering quickly, some of the questions can be really obscure for first-time players (even going so far as to ask you questions about your current collectable totals), you can only miss a grand total of three questions before failing and having to start all over, and unlike Grunty's Furnace Fun, where there was variety in the questions, multiple paths to take, and optional rewards for going out on a limb in the form of 1-Ups, this version is a simple straightaway with no gimmicks and you only need to answer about 5-10 questions to win, which easily makes it one of the more dull parts of the game.
    • Unlike Banjo-Tooie, there are no warp stations in the individual worlds for you to jump to.
  • Serial Numbers Filed Off: Ever since the first details of the game came out, many were quick to point to similarities to the Banjo-Kazooie series. Playtonic had stated that the game would be more of its own thing and not rely too much on the Banjo-Kazooie formula, but after the game came out, many people who played the game did find it to indeed be another Banjo-Kazooie game with little identity of its own.
  • Tainted by the Preview: Some potential fans were turned off by the fact that it had a Kickstarter campaign and/or the fact that it's being made with the Unity engine.
  • Tear Jerker: Sure, it's Played for Laughs, but Rextro's predicament is depressing when you think about it: He was essentially abandoned by his friends due to the advent of online gaming, and since he never jumped on board, he was left all alone with only single-player games, waiting for them to come back for 20 years until Yooka and Laylee showed up. It's a miracle that he managed to stay so positive.
  • That One Boss:
    • The Great Rampo, the 1st world's boss, can be very difficult and frustrating for new players because oftentimes they don't know that you can stop moving while rolling on a slippery surface, and they'll continuously get hit by one of the rolling logs which cause them to slide all the way back down.
    • I.N.E.P.T., the 4th world's boss, takes place on one of Kartos's tracks, which many players find difficult to control. On top of this, he appears immediately after probably the hardest and most frustrating Kartos level in the game, and requires a lot of trial-and-error to beat. There is also some unskippable dialogue in between the boss's several phases, which just makes the whole thing even more frustrating.
  • That One Level:
    • Moodymaze Marsh is largely covered in waist-deep swamp water that does damage if you fall into it while limiting mobility. If you miss a jump in a platforming section, you'll likely die before you get back to solid ground. Respawn points are unfortunately few and far between outside of a few clusters, which means a lot of treading old ground after every death. Even if you're able to avoid the swamp, it's also very easy to accidentally kill enemies by knocking them into it, which prevents them from spawning health pickups.
    • Capital Cashino, mainly because it contains what many players consider to be hardest Rextro mini-game, the hardest Kartos challenge, and the hardest boss. Until a recent patch, it also had a nasty glitch that could lock you out of 100% completion for good.
  • That One Sidequest:
    • The Pagie from Gloomy Gem Grotto from Glitterglaze Glacier can be very difficult for some players, since you need to navigate a fairly long obstacle course mostly in ball form, and if you fall you have to start over from the beginning. You also need to eat fireflies to keep the immediate area illuminated, so you need to get between fireflies pretty quickly.
    • One Pagie in Moodymaze Marsh requires completing a timed mini-golf style obstacle course by rolling giant seeds towards a hole to plant them. Many players have an incredibly hard time with this one because they don't realize that Yooka can simply latch onto the seeds with his tongue once you get the Lizard Lash move from Trowzer.
    • The Pagie for beating the high-score in Hurdle Hijinx can be very difficult and frustrating due to the length of the minigame and the amount of obstacles in the way. Some players even have a hard time beating the mini-game at all, let alone beating the high score. Also, until recent patches, the minigame had numerous lag/framerate issues that more often than not ended many attempts.
    • Kartos Karting can be difficult to control in general, but the Pagie for it in Capital Cashino can be absolutely rage-inducing. It's very difficult to get the needed score before the end, and there's a long stretch at the very end of the track where you know about 20 seconds ahead of time if you'll possibly have a high enough score, but you can't restart it from the menu, you just need to wait until you reach the end to try again. It doesn't help that, once you do manage to beat the challenge, you'll have to deal with I.N.E.P.T almost immediately afterwards.
    • The Hivory Towers slide near the entrance to Galleon Galaxy is a nightmare for many players trying to get 100%. It's jam-packed with obstacles, many of which damage you, and if you hit more than one or two of them, you won't have enough time to reach the end. Even if you have a pretty good run, you'll likely only have about a second left over when you reach the end.
    • In general, finding all of the quills in a level can be easy or difficult depending on the player. Some people just happen to find the hard-to-notice quills easily, others don't.
  • Ugly Cute: Laylee's big red nose. Characters in game love to make fun of it. Fans find it endearing. Similarly, there's Dr. Puzz, who is covered in tentacles but who is otherwise a very nice and helpful scientist lady.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: While the lead characters' genders were quickly clarified (Yooka the Chameleon being male and Laylee the Bat being female), some thought that they were the other way around, or even both female.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The reveal videos and pictures alone, which were made from three months worth of development, look gorgeous!


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