Banjo-Tooie Reviews

Banjo-Tooie

Banjo-Tooie

Medium Rare?

Gamers have a peculiar relationship with the past. I'm always fascinated by the personal attachments people form with whatever games amused them as children, even when the games in question are clearly creaky and horrible museum pieces. And I'm equally fascinated by the way other people assume that anything produced before the PlayStation 2 should be sealed in a dark vault and left to rot like so much unwanted meat.

It makes reviewing retro releases a very strange balancing act. Be too critical and you enrage the first lot of people. Be too effusive with praise and the second bunch think you're an addled old fart. It's a dichotomy I've fallen foul of several times, most memorably for pointing out that the Ninja Turtles arcade game was absolute arse water, and it also found Kristan stewing in a cauldron of piping hot hatred when he declared that the years had not been kind to Rare's N64 hit, Banjo-Kazooie.

Now the sequel, the cunningly titled Banjo-Tooie, has joined its forebear on XBLA and the issue of how best to critically reappraise old games is once again smashing around inside my skull like a particularly truculent moth.

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