Is a New Banjo-Kazooie Game On the Way?

Is a New Banjo-Kazooie Game On the Way?

When it comes to the Banjo-Kazooie series, things have been quiet for a while. Oh sure, the original game is now on Nintendo Switch Online, and Rare Replay includes the main three titles, but new games have been nonexistent since 2008.

However, it seems like things might change soon. Why? Because according to an insider called Nate Drake, another game has reportedly been greenlit for this beloved series. Here’s a tweet with more info:

So how legitimate is this rumour? Is a new Banjo game really in development?

Well, it’s hard to say. On the one hand, the leaker in question has talked about it on ResetEra quite a few times now, with posts dating back to 2022 indicating that he believes said game is in development. Given his track record with previous leaks, and the fact other people in the industry have heard similar things about such a project, we’d say that makes it pretty likely.

But we can never be sure. Leaks are only rumours until they can be verified, and without a trailer, screenshot or other form of confirmation from Rare or Microsoft, we can’t know whether said project is real and in development, was real but got cancelled, or was simply mentioned to throw leakers off the scent. Anything is a possibility here.

Still, assuming the project is real, that again raises a few more questions. That being, how would the game be designed, and what platforms would be it be released on?

Well, we at least have a few hints about the former. Rare’s Gregg Mayles says that if he was to work on a new Banjo game, it’d have smaller, more focused levels with clever design:

So it’s pretty obvious that such a new game would be closer to the style of the original than Nuts and Bolts. But that’s pretty obvious really, given how unsuccessful Nuts and Bolts was sales wise compared to the first two games.

What’s more interesting however is who would work on it, and how much of the old guard they could get involved in the project. Grant Kirkhope is a freelancer composer now, so there’s a pretty good chance he could return to compose the music (he was one of the main composers for the Yooka-Laylee series, and has contributed songs to numerous other indie 3D platformers), but the rest of the staff is currently split across the whole industry. The main designer and writing team are still at Rare, half the development team are now at Playtonic, and one of the main voice actors is Chris Seavour of Conker’s Bad Fur Day fame (who currently has his own company called Gory Detail).

As a result, it’s going to require quite a few changes regardless of what happens. A Rare made one would involve a whole new design team bar at the very least, while a Playtonic helmed one would need new voice actors for about 60% of the cast. Either way, it’d feel very different from the original titles, and likely go in a very different direction design wise.

The other thing that needs answering is what platforms such a game would be on. Since well, here’s the thing:

Banjo (and most traditional Rare IPs in general)… are perhaps better suited to Nintendo platforms than Microsoft ones.

Since longtime Nintendo fans are often those most nostalgic for the SNES and N64 era, where Rare was at its prime. Meanwhile the Xbox audience (while more family orientated than it used to be), is perhaps less enthralled by 3D mascot platformers and googly eyes than their Nintendo counterparts, and less likely to see a Banjo revival as a big deal.

So it seems like it’d make the most sense if the game was made for a multiplatform release. That way, they could market it to both the old school Nintendo fan desperate to relive their glory years, and a newer audience of fans on both the next Xbox and Nintendo systems.

Either way, a new Banjo-Kazooie game is rumoured to be in development, and we might be hearing more about it soon. So what do you think? Are you excited for such a title? What company could do justice to a series like Banjo?

Leave your thoughts in the comments below, on social media, or on our Discord server today!


Insider claims a Banjo Kazooie game has been greenlit (My Nintendo News)

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