Preview: Yooka-Laylee

Preview: Yooka-Laylee

Yooka-Laylee is set for release April 11th on a variety of platforms. We take a look at the nostalgia filled 3D platformer that brings us back to the good old days.

16-02-2017  -  by Iris Wijers

Yooka-Laylee is set for release April 11th and fans of 3D platformers are getting pretty excited. The hype for Yooka-Laylee has been building since even before the game started development: more than 70.000 backers raised over 2 million pounds in 2015 to make the game happen. With the release of the game incoming and pre-orders already being available, we take a look at what we can expect in this colorful platformer.

A “love letter” to Banjo Kazooie

Yooka-Laylee has often been described as a ‘love letter’ to old 3d platformers and specifically to Banjo-Kazooie. The game is generally considered the spiritual successor to the aforementioned game, with developer Playtonic Games consisting of a group of former Rare employees that worked on Banjo-Kazooie in the N64 era. Keen eyed gamers will have noticed that even the name of the game is a tribute to Banjo-Kazooie: the name Yooka-Laylee is a play on ukulele, matching with the instrument-related title of Banjo-Kazooie.


Trailers released for the game clearly show the resemblance of the game to the Banjo-Kazooie franchise. From the unlikely pairing of two heroes, to the colorful cast of eccentric characters to the music and sound effects, everything pokes at the nostalgic place in many a gamer’s heart.

Familiar gameplay (with some additions)

The gameplay of Yooka-Laylee is by no means revolutionary, but stands out in today’s gaming context where 3d platformers are rare. The gameplay of Yooka-Laylee is so similar to Banjo-Kazooie that one reporter said "If you have ever played Banjo-Kazooie, you have played Yooka-Laylee."  


Gameplay videos show the unlikely duo spinning, double-jumping and ground-pounding their way through a colorful world. Collecting is an important part of the gameplay. Feathers allow you to teach new skills to Yooka and Laylee and the elusive pages allow you to unlock even more parts of the open world of Yooka-Laylee. The pages can be found in little nooks and crannies of the world, or by helping the inhabitants of the world with their problems.

The gameplay trailer hints at much to do in the world of Yooka-Laylee, both familiar and unfamiliar. Fans of Donkey Kong country will have recognized the mine cart sequence, which will feature in the game multiple times both in 2D and 3D. Reportedly the game also features quiz shows and ‘hulking bosses’. Open world games are common these days, and it seems the world of Yooka Laylee is definitely worth visiting.

Local multiplayer

Online multiplayer is fun, but nothing can beat sitting on the couch with your friends playing your favorite game. Yooka-Laylee will feature eight different multiplayer games for up to four players to play against your friends. In addition to this, Yooka-Laylee will have a couch co-up mode allowing your friend to join you in the main storyline as the ‘bee team’. The second player will be able to collect quills and butterflies and store them for when Yooka and Laylee need help. With couch co-up being a prominent part of many good memories, we are eager to see this return in Yooka-Laylee.


Release confirmed on PC, PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch

Yooka-Laylee was originally announced for PC, PS4, Xbox One and Wii U. While the release for Wii U has been canceled due to ‘technical issues’, the game will be coming to the Nintendo Switch instead. The game will not be available in a physical edition for the Switch.

Pre-orders are available for Yooka-Laylee. With a digital code, you can be sure that the game will be ready to play when it comes out April 11th. You can order your pre-order for Yooka-Laylee right here on Startselect, or buy the credit for your preferred store to order it on console (availability depending on region).

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