My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Discussion and feedback for Playtonic's debut game, platformer adventure game Yooka-Laylee!
Matty
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My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby Matty » Tue Jul 04, 2017 4:34 pm

Hey all,

Huge Rare/Banjo fan here. I've recently gotten back into writing about gaming and decided to draft a relatively in-depth analysis on Yooka-Laylee. I was a bit critical, but I did it out of my love for the game/genre. I would appreciate any feedback or thoughts on my "review", haha!

https://wordpress.com/post/mattyjohn.wordpress.com/63

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baker_boy0017
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby baker_boy0017 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 3:11 am

EDIT: So I just tried to read the review... but it's asking me to join this website? Sorry, but I really don't care enough to go through the trouble of all of that.

Hey Matty, I haven't gotten around to reading your analysis yet, but wanted you to know this thread didn't totally fall on deaf ears! I think a lot of us are just weary of analysis at this point... we saw a bunch of "mainstream" critics blast the game to bits, several critics offer fair and helpful criticism, and some of our own forum goers viciously defend certain questionable design decisions for no apparent reason.

I'll go ahead and give the analysis a read, but you may want to tell us something more in your opening post to convince us we should read it. I think a lot of us may have "Yooka Laylee review fatigue" hahaha. It certainly doesn't help how quiet the devs are too: makes the community seem really dead. I'll post again when I've read through your review, hopefully this weekend.

Matty
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby Matty » Mon Jul 10, 2017 8:27 pm

Hey, there! Sorry, I didn't realize WordPress made you sign-up in order to view my post. I'm on my phone at the moment, but I'll just post the write-up here to make things easier if you're still interested?

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bjaxx87
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby bjaxx87 » Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:41 am

Is this the analysis you tried to link?
https://mattyjohn.wordpress.com/2017/04 ... k-i-guess/

I agree about that review fatigue by the way... I'm really glad I didn't read a single preview/review before beating the game myself - and I sometimes wish I wouldn't have read one afterwards. All the negativity is really spoiling the fun a little and almost makes me feel sorry for a company that developed this game with a whole lot of commitment and very obvious passion.

When I played it without hearing any of those voices I simply enjoyed the game! Of course it had flaws (some sections really drove me nuts and for further playthroughs I might skip Rextro and Kartos) but most of the time I felt right at home. It was exactly the kind of exploration-driven gameplay combined with lots of collectibles, fun characters, humour and beautiful graphics that I had hoped for since Banjo-Tooie. I even wanted to call it my personal game of the year, but considering that I haven't played it since May while I'm still heavily addicted to Breath of the Wild right now (after more than 160 hours), that'd be a lie. 99% of the things that were fixed by the recent update weren't even noticed by me! What I'm trying to say is that you can find lots of issues about a game if you really look for it, but I personally had decided to go into it blind and enjoy the hell out of it. :D That way I never noticed stuff like a flawed level design (in my opinion extensively playing the small versions first and expanding the world later helped not to get lost) or nitpicks like the camera showing Yooka and Laylee instead of the room I just entered.

After excessively playing Yooka-Laylee I wanted to go back to Donkey Kong 64 on Wii U VC and damn... YL plays so much smoother than DK64! The controls and camera movement in Donkey Kong 64 suddenly felt so rebellious to me that it was barely playable anymore. I think sometimes we don't realise how much Yooka-Laylee improved compared to its predecessors.

However, I read your review and agree to most of the issues you pointed out. I'm optimistic Playtonic takes all the complaints they got to heart (like they did when they released the recent update) and will deliver something even more perfect when their next project goes gold!

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baker_boy0017
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby baker_boy0017 » Tue Jul 11, 2017 2:32 pm

Alright I read the review... and I have to say that while there were definitely elements of the game that were off or missed opportunities, the overall shaming of it really doesn't sit well with me. I don't know if everyone else was just expecting something way too different, but for me this game was exactly what they promised me from Kickstarter. And that's the other thing: it was a kickstarter game.

Of course, your review was written before the serious updates (including performance updates on console, I believe) so I get that you may have had an awful experience. I played on Steam - the least buggy version - and despite various minor issues I still had a blast. I think this is why so many of us also got review fatigue: almost every single reviewer played the buggy, unoptimized console version that Playtonic fixed within days of release.

I think if there is anything to be upset by with Playtonic, it is the fact that they released the game several months too soon. I think they were too afraid of postponing the game again, and figured a "sort of playable" game now was better than an "amazing and perfectly playable" game later. I think the game's launch was about as bad as it could have gotten. That's the real missed opportunity. If they had decided to delay the game - maybe make it coincide with Switch release - and spent that time polishing and improving it, I think it could have been much greater. I also wish they had stuck closer to that concept art of the Grand Tome... what happened with that?

By the way, you are an excellent writer Matty!

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Rueckkoppler
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby Rueckkoppler » Thu Jul 13, 2017 1:53 pm

baker_boy0017 wrote:I think if there is anything to be upset by with Playtonic, it is the fact that they released the game several months too soon. I think they were too afraid of postponing the game again, and figured a "sort of playable" game now was better than an "amazing and perfectly playable" game later. I think the game's launch was about as bad as it could have gotten. That's the real missed opportunity. If they had decided to delay the game - maybe make it coincide with Switch release - and spent that time polishing and improving it, I think it could have been much greater. I also wish they had stuck closer to that concept art of the Grand Tome... what happened with that?

By the way, you are an excellent writer Matty!


Yep, they should show no mercy when it comes to delaying a game in order to polish it up. This "review fatigue" as you call it and the bad reception, is way worse than some people whining about a longer wait. As we can see, not many people care about the big update, since they played the game already. And that's a shame for Playtonic, who kept on improving the game up until this day. I hope they learn from that and claim their place as a respected (and great) developer eventually.

At least they can start somehow fresh with the Nintendo community when Yooka-Laylee releases on the Switch.

Piet
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby Piet » Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:49 am

Rueckkoppler wrote:
baker_boy0017 wrote:I think if there is anything to be upset by with Playtonic, it is the fact that they released the game several months too soon. I think they were too afraid of postponing the game again, and figured a "sort of playable" game now was better than an "amazing and perfectly playable" game later. I think the game's launch was about as bad as it could have gotten. That's the real missed opportunity. If they had decided to delay the game - maybe make it coincide with Switch release - and spent that time polishing and improving it, I think it could have been much greater. I also wish they had stuck closer to that concept art of the Grand Tome... what happened with that?

By the way, you are an excellent writer Matty!


Yep, they should show no mercy when it comes to delaying a game in order to polish it up. This "review fatigue" as you call it and the bad reception, is way worse than some people whining about a longer wait. As we can see, not many people care about the big update, since they played the game already. And that's a shame for Playtonic, who kept on improving the game up until this day. I hope they learn from that and claim their place as a respected (and great) developer eventually.

At least they can start somehow fresh with the Nintendo community when Yooka-Laylee releases on the Switch.

They just should've put a 2018 release date on their Kickstarter page, then there would've been no problem at all. No need to delay + no need te release big updates/patches afterwards + prob. better reviews. :)
I hope they learn from this (altho I love the game!).

Matty
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby Matty » Fri Jul 14, 2017 5:39 pm

Thank you for those who read my review! I do still love the game, for better or worse, but that's just how I felt at the end of the day.

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baker_boy0017
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby baker_boy0017 » Sat Jul 15, 2017 3:20 pm

See, I don't mind the critical analysis so much as it just felt like you were saying "I hated this game, but couldn't stop playing because it was so bad." If you just said in the review "For the record, I still loved this game," I think it would at least give the review a more positive tone, while still being constructively critical.


I honestly didn't know until your last comment that you had any kind of good feelings towards the game lol!

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bjaxx87
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Re: My in-depth "review"/analysis of Yooka-Laylee

Postby bjaxx87 » Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:03 am

I agree. While your review was well-written, I think it lacked pointing out what you enjoyed about the game. Even if a game is complete garbage (which you say Y-L isn't) a good reviewer should always try to look for positive aspects - just like he should look for negative aspects of something he thinks is a masterpiece.


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