TGS 2008: Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts Updated Impressions

It's not just about the nuts and bolts: We sit with Rare and see what kind of crazy gadgets are in the upcoming platformer.

TOKYO--Rare's taking platforming to new heights with Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts, where you can build vehicles that fly, float, sink and fire torpedoes. We recently did a hands-on with Nuts & Bolts, but this time we sat in on a demo at Microsoft's Daitabashi office in Tokyo with a couple of members from Rare, Neil Harrison and Mark Betteridge. We got to see some of the later levels, as well as cool new gadgets that will make a difference when it comes to taking on the challenges. What Rare wanted was for players to have the freedom to play how they want by using their creativity and imagination.

Banjo was originally inspired over 10 years ago by Japanese culture, according to Betteridge, who is the studio manager. Large backpacks are common in Japan for younger children, so you'll notice that Banjo doesn't leave home without one--especially since Kazooie is in it. To progress through Nuts & Bolts, you'll travel through different worlds taking on challenges to collect jiggies. The more jiggies you collect, the more doors will open for you to explore. Showdown Town acts as your hub where you can deposit jiggies, buy parts, and upgrade your vehicles. Our demo focused on some of the different ways you could tackle certain challenges and proved that the possibilities are endless.

Banjo never goes anywhere without his trusty backpack.

We were taken to a point later in the game where Banjo was still running around town in the shopping cart that you start off with. However, this time Banjo was able to go up steep ramps because he had upgraded tires. His cart can also act as a primitive boat, which came in handy when he needed to go from one end of the town to the other. As an example of the versatility of the cart, Harrison took Banjo across town and into the water. He was able to make Banjo's boat sink to get through the tunnel and activate a switch on the other side.

In one of the later levels, Banjo entered into a strange world that seemed to be easier to navigate with a helicopter. It felt as though we were a bug trying to fly through a dense jungle, especially with the mysterious music playing in the background. After tracking down the host character, who provided us with a challenge, Banjo accepted the garbage-collecting request, Intergalactic Binman. It seemed like an easy enough challenge, considering the goal is to just shove pieces of garbage into a gate. Harrison described his thought process on how to approach this garbage-pushing dilemma by starting off with a large bulldozer to shove that junk where it belongs. He attached two fans at the front in hopes that it would blow the garbage in the right direction, and his vehicle had a shovel to scoop up the trash. The problem with this contraption was that it ended up being very heavy and not very maneuverable. Harrison returned to his workshop and tweaked the bulldozer by adding another engine, a propeller, fuel, and a sticky ball. His intention was to equip that same bulldozer with a new mini-helicopter at the back that can detach with the push of a button. The sticky ball is a useful gadget later on in the game that acts as a magnet to anything it touches. This time things went a little more smoothly, but Grunty's minions kept getting in the way. To fix that problem, Harrison added torpedoes--which act like homing missiles--to his creation and beat the challenge, scoring his jiggy and a T.T. Trophy, which awards you an extra quarter-jiggy.

We were told that the top 20 replays will make it online so that the world can see how you solved a particular challenge in record time. (You can also take advantage of this and steal other people's ideas.) Rare showed us another level that had a circle of dominoes lined up with each row facing the center. You get only one shot to knock them all down, and unless you can hit them at once from all angles, there is no way you'd be able to get them all to topple. Harrison whipped out a vehicle that had four rockets attached to the corners and he slowly boosted his way into the center of the dominoes. He made sure he didn't touch anything since that would count as your one and only turn. Once he landed in the middle, he went in and edited his vehicle. During a level you can always modify but you can't add parts. He rotated the jets so that they were on their side in a clockwise direction. There were also fans in the middle so that once this thing took off, it started to spin and eventually blow over almost all of the dominoes. This goes to show that this game requires a bit more than just basic platforming and building skills. You are going to have to think outside the box to solve some of these challenges.

Nuts & Bolts looks like it will provide many hours of entertainment purely from a building standpoint. There are 28 multiplayer modes to enjoy where you are free to use whatever you can come up with. We can only imagine what kind of crazy rocket-powered vehicles people will create and look forward to building some of our own. Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts will be available on November 11, so be sure to check back soon for more coverage.

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Discussion

38 comments
nick_spot
nick_spot

skaterpunk5431, because it doesn't. stick to 360.

skaterpunk5431
skaterpunk5431

wtf why do game creators these days act like the ps3 doesnt even exist?? so stupid.

Xiao6
Xiao6

Amazing, now it will be interesting to see how creative people can get by beating various challenges. This game seems like it can be fun for kids and adults. Way to go Rare.

hooded1man
hooded1man

Because its being re-released and polished up on the Xbox Live Arcade.

amber_jade
amber_jade

How come there are Banjo Kazooie 64 screenshots in with this?

GunGriffin
GunGriffin

Yeah all the Banjo games are hitting Xbox360 as Exclusive games now. That means that we have both Viva Pinatia and Banjo as Xbox360 kids game excluisve offerings that nobody else has. This is good. Also RARE was bought by Microsoft and is now a first party publisher on the Xbox360! YAY!

SpideR_CentS
SpideR_CentS

Thanks for the link posted below. That was a awesome showing of the game. Looks to be pretty good, but with Fable & Gears out soon I will wait and see if I get it for Christmas

neildneil
neildneil

pfff nov 14th is ages. this game looks truly excellent. original took me 35 hours hopefully this will be just as long, although its budget price has me worried that it lacks depth, but im hoping banjos first adventure for 8 years will be his best yet

sparks12935
sparks12935

Even though I don't have an Xbox 360, I'm so excited for this game!

CityBlues
CityBlues

It looks pretty cool, I've pre-ordered it and I get the original on XBL Arcade for free with my pre-order on launch day! So that's a nice added bonus.

PS2Dude89
PS2Dude89

I can't wait for this game. It's finally just over a month away. I still don't see how some people are hating on this game. It's still not even out and from what I've seen everything in this game looks awesome!

DecadesOfGaming
DecadesOfGaming

Looks great.. But I don't play platformers to build vehicles !

blankshore
blankshore

I am buying a 360 just to play this game. That's how much i want it.

king_bobo
king_bobo

Awesome. This is going to be a fantastic exclusive...

Pete5506
Pete5506

I still dont know about this game, I wanted it to be like the old games but I may rent it

JDWolfie
JDWolfie

I wonder if that drill seragant mole guy from Banjo Tooie who taught you moves will return?

Glade_Gnarr
Glade_Gnarr

This would get me excited if it was new franchise, why is rare screwing with Banjo?

Scure_NS
Scure_NS

Am I missing something?..whay in the gamespot gallery for x360 BK:Nuts&Bolts are n64 screenshot gameplay!? Hmm...if that is mistake, at least thay give a god idea to rare...to give us original n64 game for free on game disk :)

Scure_NS
Scure_NS

Still...there is fear in the air... maybe Rare will blow up and disappoint pepople with their car driving lego risk ideas (why,why!?),Qonquer LR 10+! ...Just the old BK n64 levels with enchaced graphic will be wining combination...that is opinion most of my friends who see Nuts&Bolts video gameplay!

Scure_NS
Scure_NS

: ' .. :O.. : D.. I wait platform adventure game like this one since I buy my first xbox 5 years ago, 10+ for MS and RARE

The_Z92
The_Z92

LastPRmarine, the game is obviously much different than Banjo Kazooie/ Banjo Tooie. If you can't see that you are blind. It doesn't necessarily mean it's bad, just not what many fans, including me, are expecting. You have to understand that connotation.

SP_Lastic
SP_Lastic

G6, there's no way this game would run on the Nintendo Wii in it's current state; they would have to halve the graphics and content. Microsoft owns Rare, so there's no way they'd let Sony get their hands on such a classic franchise. Same for Nintendo; why give your competitor a boost?

G6games
G6games

it should come out for nintendo since it was orginally made on nitnedo or atleast ps3 xbox gets everthing. downloadable content and all the games. I would take banjo over that little big gay planet thats for sure

Shadow_Blade1
Shadow_Blade1

Dude!!! i need to pre-order thisnow! And I mean NOW!!!

LastPRmarine
LastPRmarine

How are people already saying the N64 versions were better yet the game isn't out

mariosonic91
mariosonic91

Im so glad i reserved this game. Guh-huh ( banjo laugh)

siLVURcross
siLVURcross

Ah the old N64 versions were so much better, so so much better.

nobeaner
nobeaner

I'm getting this game because there are just not enough platformers that are to my liking on the 360. Plus I'm sure my 6 year olds will enjoy it since you can build cars.

Shrog-III
Shrog-III

The-Shogun "The way you felt you had to say "first comment" renders your opinion void." His opinion is void just by being so narrow minded XD.

eXists
eXists

Very promising, between VP and Banjo, Rare really stands out. Where's Kameo 2?! Really enjoyed the first one during the 360 launch!

The-Shogun
The-Shogun

The way you felt you had to say "first comment" renders your opinion void.

BLuFAlc0n
BLuFAlc0n

WOO FIRST COMMENT!!!! Seriously, the game doesn't suit for the 360, it works better w/ Nintendo! 360 suits games better w/ FPS! NOT BANJO-KAZOOIE!! Even this game won't change the world in the hands of Microsoft!! I can't believe Microsoft did this, EVIL!!!