I'm really picky about the games I buy. That's what happens when you have limited cash. So I try to make an educated decision about every purchase - which is why I read reviews and talk to random creepy guys on the internet.
Banjo: Nuts and Bolts caused me problems. I played the demo. Several times. Whilst I enjoyed the scope, design and mechanics of the game I couldn't decide whether I was prepared to return to the simple theme of item collection and overall lack of dismemberment. I wanted a new title after the frustratingly underwhelming and unsatisfying affair I had with Prince Of Persia. I wanted something laid back, something which didn't require me to consistently fight for my life and perform lobotomy after tiresome lobotomy. Even zombie genociders need a break sometime...
As a Banjo newbie, I didn't know what to expect. The Banjo demo seemed to play to the strengths of it's existing fanbase to the extent I felt a little excluded ("What do you mean I CAN CLIMB UP THIS LAMP POST?!? Why did nobody tell me that?!"). However the charms of the game were obvious. I wanted to know what else I could expect from the game as a whole.
So I turned to the community I have learned to trust and respect. They were useless, so instead I came back to Giantbomb.
I looked through the Giantbomb GOTY list. Banjo was on it. I listened attentively to the Bombcast, and Brad's praise was convincing and helpful. But I wanted a second opinion. So, I hopped onto Xbox Live and posed the question:
What should I get next, Banjo or Burnout Paradise?(And secondly: If I get banjo, can I build a helicopter?)
TanukiDr Tan, easily excitable, was really enthusiastic about Banjo - especially when I mentioned helicopters - to the extent he got really flustered and started using the word "like" several times in every sentence.
"Both those games are, like, great, but if you want, like, something fresh then you should get Banjo. Burnout is a lot of fun but it is, like, nowhere near as innovative as Banjo. Everything you can, like, do in Burnout you will have done, like, somewhere before - what makes Burnout, like, great is the level of, like, quality."Convincing enough for me to yet again dismiss a purchase of Burnout Paradise in favour of an alternative. I'm not too bummed I have played most of it already...
OniA refreshing approach of bypassing the question completely and offering me useful advice for when I had inevitably purchased the game.
"The first thing you have to do is run around Shodown Town collecting as many crates as possible to increase your potential vehicle creations. Then you can build all kinds of crazy shit, helicopters, trucks, giant robots - you name it! Now stop asking stupid questions, lets play street fighter 2."
MattbodegaSuper enthusiastic, super buzzing, super crazy; Talked at length about why Banjo was one of the greatest games ever made and then spent a large chunk of time micro-analysing the core differences between Banjo and Metal Gear Solid 4. Predictable yet entertaining.
I talked it through with some kids on the IRC and wherever I went I received nothing but smiles and goodwill whenever the name Banjo was mentioned. I was sold.
I have ordered a copy of Banjo: Nuts and Bolts. It should arrive on Tuesday.
Thanks to everyone who offered information and advice. Its great to see people not only enthusiastic about playing games but also about wanting to see their friends have a good gaming experience as well.
And, if it sucks, I'm going to rape your families.
Thanks for reading!