I want more!
Last week I was finally able to pre-order a physical copy of Yooka-Laylee and as such I was given a download code for the Toybox demo. I played the demo and collected all 100 quills and whilst I was playing, fond memories of platformers I played when I was a kid came rushing back.
This isn’t the first time I’ve played Yooka-Laylee, I played the game at EGX last year and I enjoyed the hell out of it and came away wanting more. The build I played at EGX is completely different to the Toybox demo, as it took place in the game’s first level. The Toybox demo is effectively a tech demo of sorts but that doesn’t mean it was boring, it was still a lot of fun.
You start off in an enclosed space and you are greeted by a robot (who is rather funny and witty) who tells you how to activate the switch that opens the area you’re in, to reveal more play space. There are several areas to explore all with quills to collect (one of the many collectibles in the game). Quills in Yooka-Laylee are like the music notes from Banjo-Kazooie, which shouldn’t be too surprising, considering that most of the team at Playtonic Games worked on Banjo-Kazooie. When you collect all 100 Quills you get given a Pagie which in the full game, will act like Banjo-Kazooie’s Jiggies. (Again this is to be expected considering the team working on the game and the fact that Yooka-Laylee is effectively a spiritual successor to Banjo-Kazooie).
The gameplay is fun and the demo lets you experience some of Yooka-Laylee’s gameplay elements. You get a small taste of the combat and it feels old school, which is good. There is only one kind of enemy to beat up but there is variation. You fight some small blue goblin like creatures (who are bloody adorable may I add) and after defeating a few of them, more of them appear but this time one of them is wearing a hat. I played the demo twice, the first time one of enemies was wearing a fedora and in my second playthrough, one of them was wearing some shorts on his head. Yes you read that correctly, he was wearing shorts on his head (I think it’s normal, I wear shorts on my head all the time).
Throughout the demo you will meet a robots like the one you see at the beginning and all have some tongue-in-cheek humour, which should give players a bit of a chuckle. One of the robots got me good, I nearly died from laughter so God help me when the full game releases.
The main characters, Yooka the chameleon and Laylee the fruit bat are cool. Again like many other things in Yooka-Laylee, the main characters can be compared to Banjo and Kazooie which isn’t a bad thing. We will get to see more of the dynamic between them in the full release of the game.
Yooka-Laylee’s Toybox demo is a lot of fun, and the Banjo-Kazooie vibes are strong. I, like many others can’t wait for Yooka-Laylee. April 11th can’t come soon enough.