If you were old enough to hold a controller or even just old enough to read in 1998, then you’ve no doubt heard of Banjo Kazooie and its more recent counterparts, especially due to the port now available on the Xbox Live Arcade. If not, check out some gameplay, yes, it was back when the much loved N64 was still alive and kicking. Now that I’ve brought back some dusty, crumbling memories from the forgotten corner of your mind, why not polish them with some interesting facts about the series?
1. The words “Twycross, England” are written on the back of the boat found in the level Rusty Bucket Bay – this is where the Rare headquarters are located in real life, maybe the Stamper brothers took a wrong turn…
2. To begin with, when the game was still called Dream, it was developed for SNES, using slightly evolved Donkey Kong Country style pre-rendered graphics before making that intelligent switch to the N64. That’s right, the SNES could have actually been decent.
3. The game wasn’t originally about the loveable characters of Banjo and Kazooie. Once again, when the game was still Dream, it was about a boy with a wooden excuse for a sword and his pet dog. They then replaced the boy with a rabbit before realising that it was silly and changed the rabbit into a bear. Finally, they got something right and replaced the dog with Kazooie. Phew, all this swapping and shifting must have been strenuous stuff.
4. In 2003 when the game was rereleased on the Xbox, the Nintendo logo was removed from the opening sequence. However, Microsoft as dim-witted as they are, didn’t realise that Banjo can still be seen playing a GameBoy in save slot three. Looks like Nintendo wins again Mr Gates.
5. For the music fans out there: Every level in Banjo Kazooie (and all but two in Banjo Tooie) began in the key of C. Apparently the composer wasn’t a very adventurous person…
6. Banjo and Tiptup the Turtle weren’t n00bs to the gaming world; they were both first found racing alongside Diddy Kong and his friends in the ingeniously titled Diddy Kong Racing. However, Banjo didn’t feature in the DS version because he had a Microsoft stamp across his arse. Kazooie didn’t appear in it either. Spoil sports.
7. If you collected all the Jiggies in the game, you received a special ending in which Mumbo reveals secret areas which were supposed to be accessible once the sequel was released. This being on a Nintendo console (who are known for letting their fans down), this never became a reality.
8. The first game was planned to connect heavily with the sequel. Fans would be able to access secret items and locations if they owned both games. At certain points in Banjo Tooie, players could pull the cartridge out of the N64 and swap it with Banjo Kazooie. If they managed to do this within 10 seconds, the secrets were saved onto the game permanently to a menu named ”Stop ‘n’ Swop“.However, due to changes that were made to the circuitry of the N64, this had to be terminated. Once again, thank you Nintendo, how do you manage to ruin people’s day so much?
9. In the sequel, Banjo Tooie, TerryDactyland had an interesting feature. Take a look for yourself:
10. While developing the original game, a whopping sixteen worlds were planned. The reason that only nine are found in the released version is because developers were idle and couldn’t be bothered to do that much work. To be fair on them, some worlds were tagged on to other and some were redesigned slightly to be used in Banjo Tooie. Lazy bums.
You learn something new every day don’t you? Unless you already knew those 10 facts, in which case, teach yourself something because I’m going on a much needed break.
Sian – providing you with useless trivia wherever you are.