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Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts (Xbox 360)

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13 Reviews

Genre: Arcade & Platform / Video Game for Xbox 360 / Release Date: 2008-11-14 / Published by Microsoft Game Studios

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    13 Reviews
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      23.10.2012 18:53
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      Very different and very charming

      In the mid-late 1990's I, like many had an N64 and as a huge gaming fan I immediately fell in love with 3D platform game Banjo Kazooie. The game had huge, rich worlds, a lot of character and a big dollop of humour that most other games at the time were lacking. Instantly I was a fan of Rare (the company behind the game) and soon bought a number of their other releases including Blast Corps, Golden Eye, Donkey Kong 64, Diddy Kong Racing and Perfect Dark. Everything Rare touched at the time seemed to set the bar higher and higher for video games.

      The original Banjo Kazooie was just an excellent but straight forward platform game. You controlled a bear (Banjo) and his friend Kazooie (who lived in Banjo's backpack) as you tried to save Banjo's sister from the evil witch Gruntilda. To do this you had to go around several massive worlds to collect musical notes (to open various doors) and Jigsaw pieces (Jiggy's) to open up various new levels.

      In 2008 Rare, now owned by computing giants Microsoft, brought out the 3rd Banjo Kazooie "platform game" (and fifth "Banjo Kazooie" game) in the form of Nuts and Bolts, a platform game that takes a massive step away from regular platforming games and gives you a very unique experience.

      As with the original game you still control Banjo and Kazooie, this time however instead of just controlling them you also gain the control of vehicles, vehicles that you design and build yourself. You use the vehicles to perform certain tasks (for example winning a race) around the games massive worlds to again earn jigsaw pieces (Jiggy's) and notes as you attempt to thwart Gruntilda.

      Despite being described as a platform game the game is perhaps unfairly treated as a "platform" game as it's much more of an adventure game where you explore things, and even use your brain to try and complete missions using your own creations. Sadly the game was much maligned by the media who likely expected a straight forward platform game rather than a distinct change to the vehicle creation mode of the game, like wise a lot of fans felt let down by the fact it wasn't a straight forward sequel.

      Personally however I loved the change. I loved the freedom of being able to create...pretty much anything I wanted, from a rocket powered bike, to a tank, from a submarine to fighter jet and from a helicopter to a hovercraft. The biggest limitation to the game wasn't the game it's self, but your mind, and what you could think of creating. Sadly however this lead to a few of the games issues, namely that a number of your vehicles were only used for a very specific mission or two, leading you to create more and more vehicles.

      Despite the change in playing style from a platform game to the vehicular based play, the game actually keeps a lot of other things the same as the original Banjo Kazooie game. We see familiar faces (including Banjo, Kazooie, Gruntilda, Bottles the Mole, Mumbo Jumbo and Humba Wumba), familiar items (the notes, Jiggy's and Jinjo's) and of course the games humour (very self deprecating here and very self referential). However the introduction of new worlds (set in Showdown Town) and a new key character known as LOG (Lord Of Games) as well as the vehicles do a lot to differentiate if from not only the competition but also the prequels.

      Whilst it's certainly not a game for everyone personally I love it. I love the depth the game has, the imagination it has and most of all it's character. Sadly however poor sales seem to suggest that we won't be getting a sequel, and in fact rumours suggest that the entire Banjo Kazooie series is dead in the water, a huge shame and an unfortunate punishment for being different.

      If you love games, I can't advise playing this enough. It's brilliant and it's unique!

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        29.08.2011 20:16
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        One of the best games I've played, a must if you were a fan of the original Banjo-Kazooie!

        Banjo-Kazooie Nuts & Bolts is a fantastic game in my opinion. The adventure style of the game and the way the different levels, the Spiral Mountain main world and the test track are laid out, it will give you many hours of entertainment.

        This game comes after the original Banjo-Kazooie on the Nintendo 64. Banjo is a bear, Kazooie is a bird who lives in his backpack, and together they are trying to defeat Gruntilda the evil witch. You control both the bear and the bird together. The game is an adventure style game full of puzzles and challenges. The basic layout of how you move through levels is the same as the original; you still have the concept of collecting jigsaw pieces from levels allowing you to open up new levels. The main difference in this game is that you can use and design vehicles to use in the levels.

        The building of the vehicles takes a while to get used to, and is realistic but quite tricky sometimes (for example if you put too much weight at the back the vehicle will tip over etc). I like the way you can build any vehicle you can think of, trucks, helicopters, amphibious vehicles. I think it adds a new dimension and, as you can pick any vehicle you like at any time during levels, it means you can move faster between points or even fly to get to high areas easily.

        I love the way Spiral Mountain, the land the levels split-off from, is laid out. As the original Banjo-Kazooie did, there are many puzzles and tasks to entertain you other than those in the levels. I spend hours just travelling around Spiral Mountain messing around trying to pick up music notes (the currency of the game) and complete other puzzles.

        There are 6 worlds splitting off from Spiral Mountain, and for each world you can go through different doors to a different set of challenges. In the original Banjo-Kazooie you would have to search around for challenges and puzzles but in this new game they seem to mostly be sign-posted within the levels. I think I maybe preferred the way it was done in the original but it still works well here. Another thing I really liked was that a lot of the original music from the first game (which really sticks in your head all day!) is used in this game in one world, along with some good new theme tunes in the other worlds. In that one world there are a lot of reminders from the original game too, in different areas there are aspects of the worlds which were in the first game and I thought that was a really nice touch for fans of the first game.

        I found the controls easy to grasp, although they can be quite hard to pick up again if you've not played for a while!

        All in all this is one of my all-time favourite computer games and I could spend hours on it!

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        22.11.2010 23:14

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        Loads of laughs a really good game

        I got this game for my sister as she is a avid Kazooie fan, but I have ended up playing just as much as her and found it to be a fantastic game.

        The game keeps many of the original characters which is great as after many year gaps between different games it is nice to see familiar faces. The story line is yet again to defeat Gruntilda but this time to be able to claim spiral mountain. While it has familiar faces you meet many news ones as you race, shoot and blow up opponents and gather parts to pimp out your vehicles to the max. There is no end to the varieties of cars/ planes/ boats you can build with so many parts you can make anything you like (providing it can actually work).

        The game has unique parts which can create more personal vehicles like wind screens, plant pots, statues and aerial which mix up what you can build by just a square car. You can collect parts by finding mumbo crates around the town which allows for the traditional platform running and jumping to shine through. Which is good at slowly easing the users into a more driving oriented game, after being you to the fact past games have been platformers.

        Thoroughly joyous game, you do not even have to like racing games, it is that silly and fun it can appeal to any one no matter watch age.

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        23.01.2010 16:42
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        Overall a Great and fun game for people of all ages.

        Banjo Kazooie Nuts and Bolts is the 4th game in the series and the first to use mainly vehicle gameplay. The game focus's on the construction of vehicles for certain challenges such as races and destroying giant inflatable dinosaur balloons.

        At the beginning of the game you start with a very limited amount of parts and your starting vehicle. (A trolley with 4 wheels and an engine) As you progress through the game and collect Jiggies by doing challenges in the games 6 worlds, each with 6 separate acts that contain different challenges though retain the same landscape, you will gain access to more parts and vehicle blueprints which can be bought in 2 separate shops for music notes.(the games currency). Eventually you will gain access to over 1600 components including body panels, engines, propellers, weapons, ammo, wings and fuel tanks. You can create planes, cars, helicopters, boats and amphibious vehicles. (Even bikes well sort of)

        The game still requires the player to collect Jiggies in order to progress and open up new worlds. In total there are 125 Jiggies to collect.(131 with DLC) A new item in the game called "Mumbo's Magic Wrench" is used to build and move large objects. The Wrench can be upgraded at the gym as well as banjo's health and speed. One of the downsides of this game is that there are not enough abilities to upgrade/buy in the gym. The wrench is also used as a melee weapon by kazooie when on foot.

        The multiplayer in the game is average. You can compete in several challenges online these include battles, races and minigames. Xbox live multiplayer also supports guests. The part of multiplayer I enjoyed the most was the offline test-o-track that allowed up to 2 players. This allowed you to create vehicles and test them straight away with a friend.

        I would recommend this game to people of all ages as it is fun to play has great graphics and gameplay and at £11.99 from Amazon you can't go wrong.

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          21.11.2009 20:41
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          really entertaining and funny game

          Banjo - Kazooie, nuts and bolts is the newest of the series, and the first thing which strikes me when playing is the references to the old games, and to the Nintendo 64 console.

          The game is set in a world created by a games master, and his initial action is to take all the skills such as flying, punches and kicks, and peck attacks. In return, kazooie is given a magic spanner, which enables you to build vehicles and control objects at a distance.

          You start with the basics for a shopping trolly style vehicle, with a tray, 4 wheels, small engine and seat. Throughout the game you get upgrades in engine size, fuel capacity, weapons, wings / floats, and many other parts, until you can build any vehicle for any purpose.

          The missions in the game often require you to really think through a vehicle, some require weapons, some speed, some large carrying capacities and many which combine these. A good example is where you must build a vehicle to knock over dominoes in a circle pattern. Once one domino falls, your vehicle is disabled. At first, i built a big car, with a huge ram on the front, this got about half the dominoes. Later in the game, i returned with a large helicopter, so i could swoop in with a large ram, and knock more over. Near the end, in the pursuit of better and better parts, i built a helicopter with guns facing in all directions around, fired them all at once and knocked over every single domino.

          This is good because you can return to missions much later in the game and solve them in drastically different ways, each time making you create a perfectly suited vehicle. The game itself is fairly long, but progresses at a good rate. Some challenges are tricky, but it is a game for all ages, given some patience.

          The graphic styling looks like the landscapes and characters are stitched together, much like the little big planet graphics on the ps3. I would recommend this game as it is fun for all ages, and is quite challenging to get the high scores. It is easy to play, but hard to master, and is enjoyable throughout.

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          09.09.2009 15:05
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          Builds on the previous titles, literally

          Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts is a lesson in how to change a series not necessarily for the better - But to show what a dev team can achieve when they put their mind to it.

          Fans of the previous games in the series were up in arms when it was announced that Nuts and Bolts would not be following the series staple diet of running, jumping and floating, and would instead be a mix of platforming actions and vehicle building.

          It was enough to make people's blood boil before the game was even released, and it's upsetting to see that most of those people are still up in arms about it after only trying the demo - Because the game is a fantastic slice of alternate gaming.

          At the hands of a bizarre entity who wants you and Grunty the Witch (The previous games main rival) to compete in a battle of vehicular nonsense. What this means, gameplay wise, is getting stuck into the superb vehicle construction kit and experimenting with the games core mechanics and physics engine.

          Building a car is not as difficult as... Well... Building a car. Simply add an engine, a petrol tank, some wheels and a seat and you've got yourself something that'll drive around in a standard fashion. It's not going to win you any gold medals however, and experimenting with different weight ratio's, building heavy tank-like beasts to reduce toppling over, or even creating a motorbike for slipstreaming is all an options. Hell, why even bother with that? Stick a propellor on top and you've got yourself a helicopter... There's no rules saying you can't after all!

          The tasks you must complete range from the mundane (Races, checkpoint races, battle races) to the truly bizarre and fantastic (Basketball, long jumps, etc) and it's these tasks with a different twist that drive the game onward.

          Races, which take up the bulk of the game, can indeed be frustrating affairs - Where your car will inexplicably attach itself like a ruddy magnet to anything that so much as breathes at you. Keep well clear of all the other cars and you'll be fine, but the swearies that will fall from your lips as you fail yet again due to the AI's inability to navigate will be explicitly brought forth.

          So it's left to the other events then, of which there are many, to brighten up the games atmosphere - It's almost like a physics based puzzle game, where each well-thought out idea becomes a top heavy behemoth that gets you no-where. Tasked with dropping a heavy ball on top of a podium, I built an incredible helicopter-crane beast that lifted the ball up with my own skill an dexterity. Speaking to various friends about the same event, not one of them had used the same tactic, some opting for grabbing machines, some creating flying trolley vehicles... The list was endless, as are the possibilities when faced with these challenges.

          Throw in some of the most gorgeous graphics this side of the next-gen, a user friendly interface and some well-hidden extras and you've got yourself a fantastic game willing to do something different with something familiar. Just a shame about those damn races.

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            02.08.2009 16:48
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            Banjo is back on the Xbox 360.

            Rare have finally resurrected their classic Banjo and Kazooie franchaise last seen during the N64 era with Banjo Kazooie Nuts and Bolts.

            With the series main villain Gruntilda, defeated in Banjo Tooie, Banjo has been getting lazy, sitting around and playing his Xbox 360! The intro stars the fat Banjo and is hilarious!

            The story is a little weird as you are set challenges from this giant Tetris game called the Lord of Games as you face of against Gruntilda again. You will see some familiar faces from the previous games and the classic Banjo humour is here, but the game spends a little too much time laughing at itself!

            The platforming action that was found in the previous games has been stripped way back, you still do a little bit to collect your jiggies and notes but the main way you will do this is now using vehicles you will build.

            The departure from the series roots is rather suprising but the game copes very well and there is an excellent workshop where you can quickly and easily fit together pretty much any type of vehicle you want! Flying vehicles, hovering vehicles, jumping vehicles, fast vehicles, floating vehicles, fighting vehicles and more!

            There are a few preset ones you can choose but it is far more satisfying to make your own and you will often need to beat the challenges the game throws at you. The only problem is sometimes you can spend quite a long time making what you think will be great and it just wont work!

            The graphics are really colourful and interesting and the music is as catchy and enjoyable as ever, a really interesting and fun game.

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              16.06.2009 13:05

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              One of the few great platformers of today

              Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts is another one of those overlooked, hidden gems that is well worth picking up if you're a fan of the genre. Unlike the Banjo Kazooie games of old, Rare have mixed things up a bit with this iteration and focused more on vehicle based gameplay than the platform style game that the duo are known for, although it is still definately a platform game. I was a bit hesitant upon learning this, as driving games really aren't my forte, but my fears were laid to rest within minutes of playing.

              The vehicles in the game are entirely your own creations, and can be literally anything you can think of - from cars, to trains, galleons and UFOs. If it moves in some way, you can create it. You'll have to create a variety of vehicles for various situations in the game; some designed to fly, some for speed, and some to carry heavy loads. The game provides you with stock vehicles to use if you wish, but you're really better off creating something yourself. Fortunately the creation process is ridiculously easy and fun, and you'll become a master after you've created one or two vehicles and learned what makes the game tick.

              The world is set out in the same way as most platform games these days, with a central hub which branches out into smaller theme worlds, with each world giving you a few jobs to do to earn game items (in this instance jiggies).

              If you're a fan of Banjo Kazooie, or of platform games in general, you really must pick this one up.

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              15.06.2009 01:00
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              Good, fun, cartoony, aventure platformer which is sure to please all ages.

              Banjo and Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts

              Format: Xbox 360
              Genre: Adventure Platformer

              So what's it all about:
              In this game we see the return of Banjo the bear and Kazooie the bird making their début appearance on the Xbox 360. For those of you who are unfamiliar with these two loveable characters, Banjo and Kazooie first graced our screens in 1997 on the N64 in a very addictive platformer, set to compete with the likes of Mario and Sonic the Hedgehog. However in Nut's and Bolts any similarity to these vintage classics have been surpassed by fully utilising todays modern gaming technology.
              In the game we see Banjo and Kazooie facing the genius Lord of Games (L.O.G) who has devised some fun filled games and puzzles for you to solve. You start off in Showdown Town which is the hub from which you can travel to 6 unique game worlds, such as Nutty Acres, Banjoland and the dreaded Jiggosseum!
              In order to progress through the game you have to collect jigsaw pieces, otherwise known as "Jiggies" which are earned from completing puzzles and challenges. In order to complete these "Jiggy games" successfully you must collect a variety of vehicle parts in which to create some down right wacky machines. These custom built land, sea and air vehicles are what bring a unique aspect to the game which is sure to keep you hooked for hours.

              Gameplay:
              Unlike a traditional platformer which can be very linear Nuts and Bolts provides you with unique, open landscapes which are only restricted by what type of vehicle you have and whether you can successfully navigate to where you want to go. The controls are very straight forward and there is an in game guide to assist you when playing it for the first time.
              The Jiggy games are very absorbing and you will love having to design your own vehicles in which to earn that well deserved Jiggy! In Showdown Town there is a garage and it is here your creations come life, only limited by your imagination and what parts you have available to you. It is very reminiscent of my childhood, where I grew up playing with Lego, making lots of crazy models. I think this is largely why this game appeals to all ages.
              Each of the 6 worlds are unique and are all visually very different. There are 100 Jiggy's to collect in total which is guaranteed to keep you going for hours.
              Everything I have mentioned so far concerns the single player adventure mode, however quite refreshingly there is also an Xbox Live multiplayer feature to the game. Up to 8 people can participate in action packed races, battles and puzzles all of whom are able to utilise and share the vehicles they have designed.

              Graphics:
              The graphics in Nuts and Bolts are superb. The worlds are well modelled and textured and all are very vibrant and cartoony. Nothing about this game is serious which makes for a refreshing break from all the violent and destructive games we see flooding the gaming market.

              Sound:
              The sounds are basic but that's all you need as you are completely engrossed in the vivid visuals seen throughout the game. Everything about the game is endearing including the cartoon background music and stupid noises that the characters you meet like to make.

              Value:
              To be honest, I bought this game for my 5 year old as a Birthday present which he only started playing recently. I love involving myself with anything he does and he really enjoys playing this game. However I am finding myself sneaking into his bedroom to play the game whilst he is at school as it's so addictive!
              The best part for me is definitely making some really imaginative vehicles and then testing them to destruction on the test track. It really brings out the big kid in me. I think this game is really good value for money as it will appeal to both children and adults alike and as it has been out for several months I'm sure it will also be relatively cheap to pick up.

              Overall:
              This is an extremely fun, addictive platform adventure game which doesn't take itself too seriously. There is something for everyone to be found in the game and it will provide you and your family hours of entertainment.

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                14.06.2009 11:32

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                An absolute bargin!

                Now I normally enjoy what i call "realistic" games such as Fifa, Forza etc...So it was unusual for me to take a punt and purchase what I call a "fantasy game"

                Well I am glad that i took that punt!. This is possibly the best game I have purchased all year. Being able to create your own vehicles is such as great feature and really brings out the creative side in you. The game is a great investment as it really does last a long time. I have been playing for a moth and i am about a third of the way in.

                As for price I picked this up for £20 for which i considered a bargin as most games now cost £35 + . As you may already know its just £11.20 on Amazon, its a bargain that you really can't afford to miss.

                Concluding, its a really fun game, and if you dont like it then you wont exactly have lost much.

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                16.03.2009 17:36
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                Definitely worth a try!!

                Anybody who remembers the original Banjo Kazooie will remember it as 'the other' N64 platform game - for some, the Mario-killer, and for others perhaps a little too off the wall really to take in. I guess you could view it as a 64-bit generation equivelant of the fantastic if not completely ludicrous Toejam and Earl.

                I have to admit I loved the original game. It has always been important that series has remained self-aware and each game is clearly crafted with love. The same goes for 'Nuts and Bolts', the latest Banjo installment.

                First, a note of surprise - Nuts and Bolts is not a platformer. I fell for this misconception (I really could be more observant sometimes) and was a little confused as I started playing. Soon enough however I was sure that I was not in the least disappointed. Because this game is actually quite unique.

                Nuts and Bolts - as indicated by it's title - is based around building vehicles, which you then use to negotiate the challenges that you are presented with. Think of it like Robot Wars, or Scrapheap Challenge... using the bits and bobs available to you, you are given a surprisingly intuitive building screen that gives you quite a few options. A rudimentary physics system keeps things challenging, but more to the point, fun.

                I'd imagine that the developers had something in mind for each level that they designed, and sometimes you'll build it, sometimes you won't. Sometimes however it's fun to come up with a completely bizarre way to tackle a level, and when THAT works, you will get a great feeling of achievement!

                The graphics here are great - because this isn't a platform game, Nuts and Bolts doesn't face the limitations of platform gameplay when it comes to level design, and enormous lush environments are common place. Everything is incredibly unreal, and the extreme cartoony style is played up and works a treat.

                I have briefly tried the multiplayer here, although the single player challenge is more than enough to warrant a good rating. Playing with a handful of strangers I found myself losing very very quickly... that's when I realised my vehicle design was less than ideal!

                Overall, I'm pretty happy with this game. It's innovative and fun to play. Top stuff.

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                24.02.2009 20:51
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                An adventure full of fun and colour with something for everyone. Build vehicles and hit the road!

                You'd be forgiven for questioning what relevance, if any, Banjo and Kazooie have nowadays. A decade after the bird and bear team one-upped Mario with the superior Banjo-Kazooie, sprawling levels littered with pointless items to collect are now considered relics from the past- and rightly so. While the series' trademark irreverent humour and esoteric characters make their long awaited return, I can happily say that Nuts & Bolts is so much more than Banjo-Threeie.

                When evil witch Gruntilda challenges the now obese Banjo to yet another inane collect-athon, in swoops the Lord of Games, a disembodied hotchpotch of purple robes and Pong emblazoned TV screen, to call a halt to the outdated shenanigans. As purported creator of all videogames, L.O.G. issues a new decree: both parties must take to land, sea and air in a range of vehicle-based challenges in order to... collect a set of new pointless items! It's as if the fourth wall never existed.

                This self-awareness allows Nuts & Bolts to showcase levels such as the LOGBOX720, a glimpse into the next-next-generation where firewalls threaten to engulf the development team, or Banjoland, a museum honouring the now clichéd trappings of ice, desert and lava levels fraught with nonsensical death traps and enemies. Each lavishly rendered world has a unique art style that is stronger than other games are in their entirety, with plenty of exciting routes for your automotive Frankensteins to travel.

                Progress is made by completing vehicle-based missions, where the creation system makes Nuts & Bolts something truly special. If you can snap Lego bricks together then you can quickly construct the perfect vehicle for the task at hand. While most races and fetch-quests require logical builds, more novel tasks such as toppling the most dominoes from a high plinth reward creativity and imagination.

                My Monstroplane, with its ludicrously wide wingspan and five engines, knocked over enough dominoes to win the arbitrary golden jigsaw piece on offer but not enough to collect a coveted trophy from Trophy Thomas. With more parts being rewarded as you progress as well as those scattered around the main world, I could return to this challenge later and add a few more engines, or perhaps a few more springs which should definitely net me first place and the girl of my dreams (ladies, I'm writing this to fill space).

                However, Nuts & Bolts can sometimes get in its own way. On more than one occasion I spent ten minutes building a sumo-wrestling tank only to defeat my opponent in three seconds. It is often hard to judge what exactly is expected from you on the first attempt, however being able to save previous designs means creativity is never in vain.

                Nuts & Bolts reminds me of a Pixar movie; although dressed up for kids, the humour and mechanics are clearly pitched at a higher level while on the whole there is always something for everybody. When it fails though, it is like a sad engineer in a clown suit. These moments are rare though as a plentiful supply of missions allows you to pick and choose around the frustration.

                It's great to play a game that celebrates silliness and imagination rather than bland carnage and brutality. If you're still not convinced by the series' new direction, you could always follow the game's tip: "Not enjoying the vehicle-based gameplay on offer here? Then you need to go download the original Banjo-Kazooie on Xbox Live Arcade!"

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                17.01.2009 05:53
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                Definitely worth a purchase as it is a great game, but Nuts & Bolts could have been better.

                Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts is the first Banjo game to appear on the XBOX 360, but the question is - is it as good as the previous titles in the series ?

                For those of you that had the pleasure of playing Banjo Kazooie on the Nintendo 64 you will remember an excellent platforming experience where you obtained Jiggies & Notes to progress through the witches hideout so you may be a little surprised at what Nuts & Bolts has to offer.

                Nuts & Bolts is no longer a platforming game, it is now based around vehicles. 90% of your time will be spent on vehicles, however you still have the option to walk about if you want to and collect the usual notes (which are now used as money to buy things such as upgrades) that we are all used to in the Banjo series so there are still platforming elements present.

                Jiggies make a return to this game. Like the old games you are still required to obtain a certain amount of Jiggies before you can progress to the next stage. Jiggies are obtained by completing the various challenges that lay within each game world. Nuts & Bolts has around 131 jiggies in the game to get, so as you can imagine there are plenty of challenges that await you.

                Nuts & Bolts requires you to really exercise your brain as most of the challenges in the game require you to build your own vehicle to best suit the challenge ahead. The customization you can do on your vehicles is endless, the only limits are the size of the vehicle and the size of your imagination ! In showdown town (the games 'main' area) you can find or purchase new vehicle parts, so as the game progresses you have more materials to build better vehicles so the game stays fresh as you are constantly changing what you drive.

                The game is quite clever in the way every challenge is designed for both the casual & hardcore gamers. The reason for this is for each challenge you given two ways to complete it. The first is if you meet the criteria for the Jiggy and the second is if you meet the criteria for the Trophy.

                As you may of guessed, the trophies are much harder to obtain than the Jiggies, so a lot of thought must be put into your vehicles about how they should be built. The learning curve for building vehicles can be quite steep as you really need to pay attention to things such as weight distribution or your ride will be utterly useless - a lot of trial and error is needed when building new vehicles. This can be extremely frustrating as you will constantly find that the modifications you have made to your vehicle are bad choices and you will need to keep returning to the garage to attempt to fix the problems.

                By now you may be thinking "what's the point in getting the Trophies when I can complete the challenges by just getting the Jiggies?" Well, the answer to that is for every 4 trophies you earn you actually get a free Jiggy from 'Trophy Thomas'. Also, to get an xbox 360 achievement you are required to get all the trophies as well as all the Jiggies, so for you completionists out there getting the trophies is a must.

                Challenges in Nuts & Bolts range from very fun to the down right annoying. You will take part in races, running errands, playing darts, playing dominos, vehicle sumo wrestling, blowing up enemies in a certain amount of time, and much much more.

                Some of the missions will leave you pulling your hair out in frustration but when things are looking bad for your sanity, the game comes up with a solution. Nuts & Bolts has a high scores leader board which very conveniently saves the replays of the top 10 people in every challenge so if you get particularly stuck - just hop on the leader board and watch the replays of that particular mission to get inspiration from other peoples vehicles that they used.

                More problems surface though as you play the game, and frustration will keep kicking in as you discover how annoying the games physics can occasionally be. Having a random gruntbot that springs out from nowhere roll underneath your vehicle can render your vehicle unusable as it becomes stuck, so this will require you to jump off your seat and manually pick up your vehicle and get back in it - this is not good for your blood pressure, especially when you are competing for the Trophies.

                Whilst I am moaning, I may as well get off my chest that the loading times in this game are not exactly on the short side of things. Simply loading the garage to edit your vehicles can take a rather long stretch of time, and sadly installing the game to your Xbox 360's hard drive doesn't solve the problem by much (maybe a second or two)

                Despite the obvious downfalls of the game, I had a fantastic time playing it. I felt a real sense of achievement when I earned each of the trophies - even if some of them left me in a rage ! The beautiful thing about this game is that it has a nice balance between being fun & frustrating. The vehicle creator kept me busy for many hours, it's great fun seeing how fast you can make your brand new ride or how many grenade launchers you can stick on your plane. ;)

                Multiplayer on Banjo Kazooie is a bit of a mixed bag to be honest. It's one of those experiences where if you're winning - it's great , but if you're losing - it's rubbish. When competing against others online, you will always encounter somebody who has built a vehicle that is many times better than your own. However you can select to enter a game type where everybody uses the same vehicle - but sadly not many people play this, so you're mainly stuck with playing with custom vehicles.

                The multiplayer game types are far from perfect. You'll find yourself competing in the same races over and over again, and then sometimes in ridiculous game types such as battleships. Seriously - where's the fun in shooting cannons out of the side of your ship when you can't see what you are aiming at ?

                Having said that, I did have some fun on the multiplayer when I finally got to compete in the game type where everyone uses the same vehicle. Playing against a friend in a private game was a lot more fun for me than playing against the veterans online.

                As far as the XBOX 360 Achievements for this game go - it's great fun to achieve them. I personally have the full amount of points for this game (1000/1000) and it wasn't as difficult as some people make out. Sure, you need to get every single trophy/jiggy in the game - but they are all more than achievable, just use the highscores replays for inspiration and you'll get through them. Other achievements mostly unlock through general gameplay, however the online ones can be quite tricky (you need to win a ranked race by reversing over the finish line !).

                Conclusion:

                Rare made a brave move by stepping away from the platforming genre but in my view it was a good one. Despite the games downfalls it really is an extremely fun game to play with plenty of hours of gameplay to be had. The humor the game provides will keep you smiling even when times become frustrating - I found the "Hag Trolls" clan in the game to be quite funny, as it's clearly mocking the all-girls 360 clan "Frag Dolls".

                For those of you that just want to sit down and be spoon fed what to do - Nuts&Bolts is not the game for you. You need to constantly change your vehicles in order to complete the challenges, so regular use of the brain is a must !

                Advantages:

                Fantastic Vehicle Customization
                Many hours of gameplay
                The games humor is great
                Game stays fresh due to new challenges requiring new vehicles
                Achievements are fun

                Disadvantages:

                Slow loading times
                Sometimes irritating physics
                Building vehicles may be too difficult for children (or even adults!)
                Below par multiplayer

                Nuts&Bolts is definitely worth buying if you're willing to endure the learning curve as you will grow to love the game, however I feel the learning curve may be too steep for children of young ages. If I was able to I would give this title 3.5 stars out of 5, but as halves are not available I must rate it 4/5 stars. Definitely worth a buy, especially as it is now available for around £20 online.

                Hope this helps those of you considering purchasing this game. :)

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              • Product Details

                The famous bear and bird duo return with Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts. The Lord of the Games (aka LOG) is tired of the petty squabbling between Banjo and the evil witch Gruntilda (aka Grunty), and has arranged a showdown to decide the rightful owner of Spiral Mountain. Claiming to have created every video game ever made, LOG has built the game worlds in which the contest's challenges take place. Banjo must complete LOG's challenges to win, while Grunty tries to stop him using every method her devious mind can muster. Throughout your adventure, you create your own abilities by building vehicles for Banjo to pilot over land, sea and air. Vehicle parts, which range from simple devices such as engines and wheels to more unusual equipment such as springs and egg guns, are earned and collected throughout the game. Use your imagination to combine parts in any order to create whatever vehicle you choose.