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Youtooz releasing official Banjo-Kazooie figurines

A figurine that doesn't break the bank

Youtooz has revealed that they're working on a new Banjo-Kazooie figurine, and it's set to launch on Feb. 26th, 2021. The figurine is just $30, and you can read the official description for it below.

Banjo and Kazooie are always getting swept up in adventures, whether it’s making music or stopping Grunty in her tracks. Standing 4.5 inches tall, this detailed collectible features Banjo in his classic yellow shorts and blue backpack (with pal Kazooie bursting out), ready to pluck up a tune on the banjo from his game’s memorable intro. The window box is illustrated to show Banjo and Kazooie’s home, using elements from the franchise. This collectible ships in a matte, embossed, protective outer sleeve.

Check out more pictures here

UPDATE - Turns out Tooty and Bottles are getting their own figurines on the same day!

RARE's Stop 'N' Swop feature was also planned for Donkey Kong 64, but was removed due to technical issues

Too RARE of an idea

RARE fans will no doubt remember the much-trumpeted Stop 'N' Swop feature from Banjo-Kazooie. The original plan was for the feature to be used in Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo-Tooie in order to unlock new content between the games. Unfortunately, Nintendo squashed the idea before Banjo-Tooie came out, as the method to activate it was deemed too volatile.

RARE still had plans to include the Stop 'N' Swop feature in other games as well, including Donkey Kong 64. RARE actually sent out details to Nintendo on the feature, and Nintendo responded with a letter explaining why the idea wasn't really feasible. Nintendo found that it could cause problems with hardware, and wouldn't even work with all versions of the N64.

Nintendo also recommended that RARE find another way to make these features work, such as passwords that could be shared between games. RARE obviously didn't follow through with that idea, leaving Banjo-Kazooie's content and other plans for Stop 'N' Swop left to die.

French shipments of the Mario Red & Blue Edition Switch, Banjo-Kazooie, Terry, and Byleth amiibo detailed

Enough units to go around?

As we've said many times, Nintendo is really popular in France. This is why the region gets a decent amount of stock for new Nintendo products. Every so often we get details on just how many units are heading France's way, and some of that data has come in today.

Nintendo recently revealed the Mario Red & Blue Edition Switch, which is launching alongside Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury. French retailers will get a total of 40,000 units to dish out to consumers, which might make it a tad hard to find soon after launch. We also got data on the launch shipments for the Banjo-Kazooie, Terry, and Byleth amiibo, which you can find below.

Banjo-Kazooie: 12,000 units
Terry: 8,000 units
Byleth: 8,000 units

Nintendo's Japanese release schedule shows Banjo-Kazooie and Blast Corps hitting the Wii U Virtual Console today

RARE finds

UPDATE - Nintendo has updated their calendar, and both listings have vanished. It doesn't appear Nintendo has given a reason for the removal, or an explanation as to why the titles were listed in the first place. You can find our original post below.

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Here's an extremely odd one for you. Nintendo's official release calendar in Japan shows that the Wii U is getting two Virtual Console titles today, and both are quite notable.

According to the listing, Banjo-Kazooie and Blast Corps are seeing release. Both titles are appropriately listed as coming from Microsoft Japan as well. The calendar shows two separate listings, but the links for each game spit out a 404 message when you click through. Whether the calendar is completely wrong or the info got out earlier than anticipated is anyone's guess.

Banjo-Kazooie creator shares his thoughts on seeing the duo react to Sephiroth's arrival in Smash Bros. Ultimate

Happy times, sad times

Earlier this week, Nintendo fans were treated to the reveal of another DLC character for Smash Bros. Ultimate. Final Fantasy VII's Sephiroth is joining the battle, and some of Smash's current roster was there to see his arrival. Banjo and Kazooie were front-and-center to see the one-winged angel descend, and they were obviously just as shocked as fans were!

It's pretty wild seeing the faces that Smash Bros. Ultimate has brought together. If fans are enjoying the reveals and blown away by the characters, there's no doubt their creators are as well! Steve Mayles, creator of Banjo-Kazooie took to Twitter to share his thoughts in seeing the bear and bird in Sephiroth's reveal trailer.

It's a wonderful thing, tinged with a little sadness at what could have been I guess. But there is still hope!

Mayles' "sadness" mention is no doubt tied to the disappearance of Banjo-Kazooie from the gaming world. It's been a very long time since we've seen the dynamic duo headline a new game, and no one knows if it'll ever happen again. RARE's trajectory has certainly been wildly different since their Nintendo days, and most employees have moved on to Playtonic or other companies.

Will another Banjo-Kazooie game come around? You'd hope the reaction to the characters appearing in Smash would show Microsoft that there's till millions of people who want another adventure with the two. We'll just have to keep crossing our fingers and hoping for the best.

Banjo-Tooie devs say the game's darker tone was deliberate

A sequel with a darker tone

While Banjo-Kazooie was a bright and colorful 3D platformer, the follow-up was a bit more grim. Banjo-Tooie certainly had its bright spots and funny gags, but the overall tone was somewhat darker. That was all by design, according to ex-RARE dev Gregg Mayles. He shared some insight into the darker path in an interview with Nintendo Life.

"It was deliberate. We didn’t want to do the same thing again as the first game and we wanted to surprise players. I don’t think anyone would have expected us to kill off one of the main supporting characters and I can remember us laughing when we plotted Bottles’ downfall. There were some pretty dark and mature elements to the tone that we tried to balance out with our sense of humour, I think my favourite was when Bottles’ family was asking about him and Banjo had to pretend he didn’t know the mole was no more."

Banjo-Kazooie Mod Adds GoldenEye Level to the Game

We heard you like RARE games...

Both GoldenEye and Banjo-Kazooie are some of the most popular games on the N64, so why not cram them together into one great experience? That's exactly what the mod above does, as it takes the Dam level from GoldenEye and drops it into Banjo-Kazooie for a platforming experience! The mod looks ridiculously high quality, and the Dam level seems like it was made for 3D platforming and collecting!

Thanks to CM for the heads up!

Grant Kirkhope working on a Banjo-Kazooie remix album

A real treat!

Grant Kirkhope was an integral part of Banjo-Kazooie, breathing life into the game with his amazing soundtrack. It just wouldn't be Banjo-Kazooie without his audio work, and now fans of the franchise will have a chance to experience that wonderful soundtrack in an all-new way.

Kirkhope has confirmed on Twitter that he's working on a remix album for Banjo-Kazooie. The album might not feature every song from Banjo-Kazooie, but it should include the greatest hits. When info on a release date and more are shared, we'll be sure to bring it to you.

Grant Kirkhope shares a remix of Banjo-Kazooie's Mad Monster Mansion theme for Halloween

Hopefully not TOO scary!

Grant Kirkhope, composer on Banjo-Kazooie, has returned to the franchise for a bit of Halloween fun. In the player above, you can hear a remixed version of Banjo-Kazooie's Mad Monster Mansion theme, which Kirkhope put together specifically for Halloween. It's a lot spookier than the original, and as you might guess, it's also much better quality in terms of instruments!

Fangamer adds Jinjo plushes and a Banjo-Kazooie tote bag to their store

Ga-HUH!

Modern-day RARE might not care much about making a new Banjo-Kazooie game, but the gang over at Fangamer is more than happy to make some new merch! The store has just added a selection of different Jinjo plushes, along with a Banjo-Kazooie tote bag. You even get yourself a bonus Jiggy keychain with purchase! You can grab both items here.

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