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A new, Rare-approved Banjo-Kazooie game was shown off at the weekend


Right around the time Playtonic Games, a new studio made up of former veteran Rare developers, unveiled their spiritual successor to Banjo-Kazooie, thousands of miles away a new, Rare-approved Banjo-Kazooie game was shown off.

The audience playing the Banjo-Kazooie game at SXSW.

During the Austin, Texas-based South by Southwest (SXSW) Gaming Awards show, an interactive Banjo-Kazooie "experience" was played by audience members.

It was a rudimentary, on-rails game in which members of the audience were tasked with waving their arms left or right to move the flying Banjo and Kazooie through a cavernous level, collecting musical notes and puzzle pieces along the way to a high score.

You can watch the action in the video, below (there's no audio due to copyright issues).

The Banjo-Kazooie game was the work of Audience Entertainment, which specialises in motion-controlled, crowd-based games. It was created "exclusively" for the crowd at SXSW, so there's little chance this will turn into a game others will be able to play.

But it was an official, Rare-sanctioned project, so inevitably set tongues wagging on the possibility the developer may have something Banjo-related in the works.

Xbox boss Phil Spencer recently visited Rare at its Twycross, Leicestershire headquarters to check out the company's new game now that the Kinect Sports series appears to have run its course.

At GDC Eurogamer's Martin Robinson asked Spencer about Battletoads, another old Rare game that's been in the news lately, and Rare's 30th anniversary later this year.

Here's the exchange:

You've brought this up a number of times now, so you can't blame me for asking. Battletoads... It's Rare's 30th anniversary this year...

Phil Spencer: Is it? (laughs)

You're going to celebrate it with cupcakes, I'm sure, but what other plans are there?

Phil Spencer:  We know it's their 30th anniversary. I can say that. And Rare's a very special studio, and I think I said a couple of months ago that I got to play the prototype they had for their new game. Gregg Mayles [veteran Rare designer] is someone I've a tonne of respect for. We recognise that it's their 30th year. And that's an important time - without giving away too much.

Is it time to celebrate their heritage?

Phil Spencer: I think it is.

All eyes now turn to E3 in June.