Yooka Laylee

6.4Overall Score

Tons of collectibles.

Clunky controls.

PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch

PC, Mac, Linux - $29.99, PS4, Xbox One, Switch - $39.99

English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Russian

Old school platformer fans rejoice, Yooka Laylee is here. From Playtonic, makers of the Banjo-Kazooie games, this game brings some nostalgia into the lives of anyone who grew up on N64 and the Banjo games. It has much of the same gameplay, child-friendly atmosphere, challenging aspects, and style that you remember, just updated and polished for a new generation. It brings new characters, new worlds, new looks, and new challenges to an old school platformer. It is everything that you want from the genre and everything you loved when you were a kid. It is not all rose tinted glasses, either, as this game is actually really good.

Yooka Laylee is an old school platformer. Similar to the Banjo-Kazooie games, and other platformers that were massively popular in the late 90s and early 00s, it is about making your way across obstacles and dangers to get to the end. You are going to have to traverse through numerous risky areas, jump, and expertly navigate your way through the end. You have multiple abilities thanks to your two character system, just like you did in Banjo-Kazooie, to make your adventure easier, at least in theory. In reality, managing two characters and more abilities will present unforeseen challenges. It is a hard game to manage, even for anyone who grew up in the golden age of platformer games.

What makes this a gem of a game is the characters and design. Banjo-Kazooie was famous for its style, humor, and stories, and this is no different. It is child-friendly but it is something adults will appreciate, too. You have a full cast of characters, voice acted and beautifully designed, that make the story all the more immersive. You become part of this world and you care about the characters, and you want to take down the bad guys. It makes you feel for everyone and everything while staying light hearted.

The level designs are exceptional, too. When you play a platformer, you want good level designs. You want levels that look good and that challenge you, and that offer variety. You get all of that here. From level to level, you have a complete and engaging world around you. You have difficult obstacles and risks. You have levels that force you to think and react quickly. It is everything that a platformer should be.

While the controls are easy to get to grips with, boss fights can provide a hefty challenge. The first boss here sees Yooka and Laylee having to roll up a slope, dodging logs and fire as they go in order to whack a wall-like character in the mouth. Rolling up the hill while avoiding the logs that are simultaneously tumbling towards you requires some serious analogue stick skills and quick reactions – much more so than the rest of the game – meaning the bosses can take several attempts.

For more screenshots, click here.

You have a lot that you expect from the genre, too, and that you loved about the old school platformers. Collectables, fun music, co-op, and more are here. Relive your childhood, or make this a major part of your childhood now, and see why so many loved the original series and love this one, too.

There is a lot to Yooka Laylee. It is a game of nostalgia that can stand on its own well, giving you a full and polished experience. Make the world your own, jump into co-op mode, play challenges, and do more. There is a massive world here for you to explore, things for you to collect, and a lot for you to complete, just like the old style games.

Watch more videos on their YouTube channel: Yooka Laylee on YouTube.

Play Yooka Laylee Now

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Ella Walker
Author: Ella Walker View all posts by
Ella has been playing video games for over 15 years. She worked for a large game production company before and after quitting it in 2003, became a freelance writer.

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