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Overview

Conker's Pocket Tales is a game developed and published by Rare for the Game Boy Color platform. Playing as the titular character Conker the Squirrel - fresh off his debut in Diddy Kong Racing - you must rescue your girlfriend Berri from the villanous "Evil Acorn." Along the way, you must also retrieve your stolen birthday presents to advance to the next game areas, and participate in a variety of minigames. These minigames include target galleries, slingshot shootouts, and even panning for gold. You must also solve a number of simple crate puzzles - the first of which egregiously requiring you to push boxes out of the way in order to leave your own house.

Conker's primary mode of attack is a slingshot, which fires acorns collected from around the map. The slingshot can be taken into a first-person mode in specific sections of the game, including several shooting gallery set-ups. In addition, Conker can also attack enemies with his tail before acquiring the slingshot (or if he should run out of acorns). Conker can also push certain objects around the screen, ground stomp buttons lying on the ground, and dig into dirt patches which transport him to other parts of the map.

The game was put out after multiple delays of Conker's N64 game, while it was still intended to be aimed at a younger audience. As a result, Conker's character in Pocket Tales is a far cry from his console game counterpart, featuring little dialogue whatsoever by the character (none of it containing any obscenities).

Backwards Compatibility

Perhaps the game is most notable for it's ability to be played on the only-then-recently obsoleted Game Boy; a feature shared by only a handful of other Game Boy Color games. Strangely, when loaded on the Game Boy, the changes extend beyond mere graphical downgrades. Many of the game's levels are re-designed in order to compensate for the monochromatic color scheme, with some minigames being re-tooled / omitted as well.

In addition, should the player attempt to switch between playing on the Game Boy and the Game Boy Color, they must erase their save data in order to do so. Which is to say, the game cannot be played and saved on one system, and then resumed on the other.

Reception

The game received average scores upon it's release - including a 6.0 / 10.0 from IGN. In their review, they compliment the game's variety of gameplay, but criticize it's simplicity. The graphics received high marks from many, both in-game and during the "pre-rendered" animated sequences, while the music and sound effects were determined by critics to be "lacking."

Legacy

The game's mark on history seems to be limited to being Conker's first game solo performance in a game, and it's backwards compatibility feature. Whether or not the game is canon within the Conker series is matter for fans to decide, as Bad Fur Day makes no specific mention of it. The only constants between Pocket Tales and Bad Fur Day are the characters Conker and Berri.

The nefarious Evil Acorn has yet to make his return.

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