"Its Mario 64 comparison was always inevitable and which is better is divisive. BK's biggest strengths lie in its 'Rareness': game engine crafted excellently; splendidly contrasting worlds of increasing challenge; Grunty's surprise quiz; and Rare's unique humour injection. Does it have innovation to surpass Mario 64? Some say BK couldn't exist without Nintendo's launch title. And the Grunty finale? Well, she's just not Bowser..."
User Reviews (19)
"While Mario may win in the innovation category, Rare took everything great about the N64 launch title's success and managed to improve on it. Whimsical characters, ingenius level design, and a very catchy soundtrack combine to make Banjo-Kazooie a must own game. It represents Rare at their best, and is probably my favorite game in the entire 64 library. Now to play it again..."
"Beat it 100% twice, loved the challenge, the hilarious characters, numerous secrets, and how much there was to do and find. It felt like it's own massive world to me as a kid and still does today. This is IMO the best 3D platform game on the N64. The loss of this IP is hands down my greatest disappointment regarding Rare's departure from Nintendo."
"I could honestly play this game forever. The charm, the humour, the challenege (read: Rusty Bucket Bay), it all boils down to a near-prefect experience. It took every gameplay element from Super Mario 64 and made it so much better. The polish and attention to detail makes this game an absolute essential for anyone who's anyone. Genuine humour is so 'Rare' in a game."
"Banjo-Kazooie is an excellent game, that puts other platformers around it to shame. No stars to gather but there's jiggies instead, and a witch's castle shaped like her head. It's overflowing with charm, fun and delight, with colourful worlds and controls most tight. An outstanding game about a bear and bird's quest, that's got a lot to offer, and it's one of Rare's best!"
"Banjo was introduced in Diddy Kong Racing and he got his own game little after that. Enter Banjo-Kazooie, one of N64's finest games. It's collect-a-thon 3D platform adventure but thankfully contains less item collecting than the following 3D adventure Donkey Kong 64 offered. A humorous adventure featuring soundtrack by Grant Kirkhope. Everything works so well but I'd say the sequel, Banjo-Tooie, was even better."
"This was the very first game that I remember completing. Every world holds a special place in my heart and cements it as one of the best 3D platformers ever made. Its energetic and lively soundtrack fits every world, making it a joy to explore each new section. It's beautiful to look at and this is the game I play to cheer me up."
"To the untrained eye this might seem like a typical Mario 64 clone. Unfortunatley for those people this game somehow manages to dare I say it? beat Mario 64 at it's own game with massive levels, great music, Humor, and one heck of a final boss. it even had a surprise trivia show that no one expected this is one of the N64's finest."
"The progenitor of the "collect-a-thon" 3D platformer, this one holds up better than any of its successors today. Inspired worlds, massively inventive gameplay, and clever dialogue that surpass anything else that comes to mind. I have no shame in saying this is one of the best games ever made. I can also wholeheartedly say there weren't enough games trying to replicate this one's feats."
"Oh, Banjo-Kazooie. How can you not like its incredible likability? The second game that Banjo the bear appeared in after Diddy Kong Racing, this platformer is full of charm and very well-detailed worlds, not to mention the characters are very adorable and the controls are well done. It may have a difficult final boss fight, but overall it's a fun experience from the start."
"A huge game world, colourful and detailed graphics, varied gameplay, witty script and excellent music. Banjo and his acid-tongued companion Kazooie boast an impressive moveset used to navigate the various themed worlds and solve puzzles. There are a lot of collectibles but they all feed into the wider gameplay systems without feeling overwhelming. Better than Mario 64? Debatable. But it arguably has more panache."
"In an era when huge imaginative worlds were a thing, Banjo-Kazooie established a standard and paradigm for future 3D platformers to come. Charming characters, ingenious dialogue, colorful level designs, fascinating music and some fun gameplay mechanics made this the gem every single game developer should strive for in terms of content. RARE's N64 legacy shall live on and be always omnipresent in the collective mind."
"+every world is a memorable fun-filled dream +one of the most charming games ever made +very replayable +whimsical soundtrack +delightful transformations +dynamic music system +humorous dialogue +Click Clock Woods' seasons mechanic -Kazooie's noises can be annoying -swimming/flying controls could be better -Banjo-Tooie link doesn't work -some collecting required, which a few people may not like -inspired by Mario 64, so it had less impact"
"Banjo Kazooie is one of the best platform game ever made. The game contains a lot of content and variation, a lot of different levels (from a snowy peak to a polluted cargo bay for example)and a game-play that never feels boring, from fly to shoot eggs and punch wacky monsters. Sadly none of the sequels reached the bar created by the first game."
"Banjo-Kazooie represents Rare's first foray into 3D platforming. Its warped and instantly warming sense of humour is refreshing to this day. The Teddy bears' picnic hub theme tune sets the tone of the game, shifting mood and pace with effortless ease. Each world is jampacked with fun and collecting every jiggy and note provides a wonderful challenge. Banjo-Kazooie is a treasure trove of greatness."
"Never has a game been completed so many times, nor has one been confiscated by my parents so often. An adventure that holds up perfectly today, with fun characters, beautiful music and a great balance of collecting, events and level design. Every Xmas I play through to Freezezy Peaks and no level in history can measure up to the beauty of ClickClockWood's Season variation."
"What can't be said about this game? Packed to the brim vast worlds, lovable characters, clever writing, memorable soundtracks, and tons of collectables, this is a game clearly ahead of its time and has aged very well. This is what a game is supposed to be like, letting you do whatever you want, whenever you want. Banjo-Kazooie isn't a game, it's a breathtaking adventure."
"Banjo-Kazooie, though lacking the charm of RARE's Donkey Kong releases, is a great game. Whereas Mario 64 centred on the protagonist possessing a set amount of skills, differently applicable to each environment, in Banjo-Kazooie the hero learns fresh moves and transformations to venture into new areas. This gameplay mechanic is very enjoyable taken on it's own merits, but lacks the genius of Mario 64."
"My first 3D platformer, and in my opinion still the best. Miles better then Mario 64, because this one has lots of british humor, many cool moves, lovely characters, great music, great N64 graphics, lost of collectables and big levels. Getting to the enboss isn't a easy task and takes a lot of effort. DK64 nor BK'S sequel (Banjo Tooie) could beat it. Recommended!"
"This game's strength lies in the details. You can't go wrong with a collect-a-thon game and Banjo is certainly up there with the bests. Right from the beginning, you know you are playing a Rare game and that means FUN. Large worlds, extremely good platforming, it's all in there. The only thing it can't beat (nor does it need to) is Super Mario 64."
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