Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts Review
Banjo and Kazooie are back again to battle the evil witch Gruntilda. It has been many years since the heroes have seen action, and all had been peaceful until Grunty's head shows up, and then some mysterious being called the Lord of the Games (or LOG) shows up. LOG wants a final showdown between the two adversaries and decides that in order to determine a winner Banjo will have to play through many many levels using items he finds along the way to build machines to help him collect the puzzle pieces that will ultimately send him home as the victor.
The graphics are what you'd expect from a Banjo Kazooie game on a next generation console. All of Grunty's little minions have there own look and it is easy to tell what each of them do once they've attacked once. The levels all have their unique themes as well as the characters that play in the levels. The layout of the main city is a bit frustrating when you get lost but overall it has to be that way to show distinctive different areas to play in.
The controls are pretty straight forward, you are going to be using the right trigger like its going out of style, and from time to time you will get to use the other buttons. The one thing that makes the controls a bit confusing and complicated comes when you're vehicle/machine is able to fly. I can't tell you how many times I've just smashed the crap out of it because the controls don't act exactly how I expect them too. Another thing is that there will be times where you're going to have to press the right shoulder button, and never really figured out what all was going on with that.
The music was a light playful type of thing. I didn't see it as a distraction from the game, and so I kind of ended up bobbing my head from time to time because you do get to here it a lot.
So basically the object of the game is that you're going to be completing different tasks for characters in different levels, if you get them done within a certain amount of time you get the music notes, a bit faster you get the puzzle piece, faster still you're going to get a trophy (collect 4 trophies to unlock an extra puzzle piece). There are going to be some challenges where you're going to have to use the vehicle that LOG wants you to use, and then there will be times where you'll get to choose your own vehicle, and if you've got the parts that's when your chances of getting the trophy greatly increase. The challenges range from racing to picking up items and taking them to another place. The one slightly disappointing thing is that you can design some interesting vehicles in the shop while in the central town, but you can't use them in that town. You can only use them in the "challenge levels". So you're going to be collecting puzzle pieces and the more you collect the more open the world becomes, there will be times where you can face off directly against Grunty, but most of the time you're just going to have to deal with her creations. It is possible to win the game without collecting all the pieces, but for those out there looking for the perfect 100, it will take a while but its possible.
This was a slightly fresh look into the Banjo Kazooie franchise, and the first to appear on the XBOX360. I did like the small hidden references to other Rare games, as well as the versatility the game allowed when it came to creating your own creations. The problem for me is that some of the challenges seem near impossible to complete with the options you had at your disposal. Another thing is that I would have loved to be able to use my creations in the central city so that I didn't spend time pulling out my hair as I missed a single jump to get at a box filled with extra parts. If you are willing to play a game where trial and error are the name of the game, this is for you, but if you fear that frustration at a point will overwhelm you then don't get this game. This game gets a 7.5 out 10.