Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Discussion and feedback for Playtonic's debut game, platformer adventure game Yooka-Laylee!
LDK777
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Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby LDK777 » Sun Apr 16, 2017 5:04 am

I've 100% completed the game. Overall liked it alot. Will almost certainly pick up a a sequel if it's ever made.

I found the majority of critics complaints to be almost completely unfounded.

One thing I can't help but to feel very disappointed with was the weak story line and characters lack of personalities.

At no point did I feel invested in or even understand the character's motivations. You progress through the game purely for the sake of progressing.

Look back at BK... Ok your sister has been kidnapped, that's quite a reasonable motivation. You see her cowering in fear of the villain. On top of that, when you reach game over you see the results if what a failed quest does. You feel a visceral sense of urgency and purpose. You totally understand why you are in the lair.

In YL there's no real impetus behind anything. So this guy steals all these books, including a magic book. Do we ever really understand why? What about this book is so important? Why do Yooka and Laylee even possess this book to begin with? They seem to not even know what it is or why it's special. How did they come to own it? Why exactly would they care about getting it back? For money or something? The whole thing was very weak. Surely they could have come up with more compelling motivations and stakes.

The personalities of many of the characters also failed to shine through.

Laylee has a little bit of one. Trousers was also ok. Capital B was supposed to be like an evil corporate goon but that wasn't played up nearly as much as it could have been. When this aspect is played up he's great, but it wasn't played up enough. Needed to be over the top. Way more bad boss jokes needed (jokes about him cutting benefits, or requiring unpaid overtime, etc). Just play up the terrible, evil boss aspect way more.

The rest of the characters are bland and lifeless. Yooka was extremely disappointing. Not even sure why the character of Vendi even existed. Same with Dr puzz.

Creating a cohesive world is tough I guess. Lots of room for improvement.
Last edited by LDK777 on Mon Apr 17, 2017 2:58 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Scrubber
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Scrubber » Sun Apr 16, 2017 12:29 pm

I'm glad I wasn't the only one to pick up on this.

Banjo Kazooie and Tooie had excellent stories with characters you really cared about. All brought together with superb eerie cutscenes that really set the tone and had you gripped .

Yooka Laylee is pretty much like Nuts and Bolts. Bland story, no drama, no atmospheric cut scenes, no tension,
It's painfully obvious that the characters in Y-L know they are there for the sole purpose of "bringing back the 3d platformer"
It doesn't give you the drive to go is the game properly.

In Banjo 1/2 after a long campaign you really feel like "omg this is It, this is the moment I finally face that bitch that kidnapped my sister and killed my friends"
I can't imagine anyone would feel the rush, excitement or anxiety of facing Capital B because of how bland the story is. He's hardly even a villain.

Yuke Quantum
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Yuke Quantum » Sun Apr 16, 2017 1:39 pm

I would like to wager that YL are more interesting than we think:

They're pirates! Their motivation - pillaging.

Think about it. They live on a crashed pirate ship, Laylee is concerned with the price she can get with the special book. They essentially break into a business and steal all the goodies inside. They disrupt the peeps who live in the worlds. Granted, the boss bee is not treating his tenants great, but what landlord does?

I think a big hint at this is also in Galleon Galaxy. YL destroy the Blamphibians station.

I mean there are tons of instances where your task is actually to disrupt, beat, or steal from othercharacters.

Don't forget the buried pirate treasure (Galleon Galaxy - Toybox secret, which we still don't know what it does yet)

We might have been playing as the anti heroes this whole time.
-Yuke Quantum
the thirst exploder

Phenixer
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Phenixer » Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:11 pm

The story is based on Microsoft buying RARE and trying to make money instead of good games :twisted: Isn't it ?

PandaLover
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby PandaLover » Sun Apr 16, 2017 4:17 pm

90s era platformers typically did not have deep or interesting stories, whereas games today do. So maybe they were trying to stay true to that. I personally think the game would of bennefiting from applying a modern approach to the story, like actually hiring a story writer to come up with something interesting instead of some half assed idea that a couple of programmers came up with in 5 minutes.

PandaLover
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby PandaLover » Sun Apr 16, 2017 6:26 pm


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Scrubber
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Scrubber » Sun Apr 16, 2017 8:16 pm

Watch this https://youtu.be/Ev_a61iIG0w

This is exactly what I want.

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Gorjo
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Gorjo » Sun Apr 16, 2017 9:01 pm


O O O O H H
B A N A N A

LDK777
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby LDK777 » Sun Apr 16, 2017 9:35 pm


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EekumBokum202
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby EekumBokum202 » Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:41 pm

Banjo-Kazooie's story was just a witch kidnapping the protagonist's younger sister. That's one of the most generic stories you can tell. What makes games like Banjo-Kazooie and Yooka-Laylee interesting isn't the story, it's the characters within the story that keep it going! And while not everyone may latch on to the characters like I did, I'm invested in Yooka and Laylee's journey and just what Capital B is plotting!
ATTENTION PLAYTONIC!
For development "Twoka-Laylee", please watch these:



For everyone else, talk about these videos !

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Scrubber
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Scrubber » Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:46 pm


Pokemaniac Dan
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Pokemaniac Dan » Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:04 am


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Mew Mew Psychic
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Mew Mew Psychic » Mon Apr 17, 2017 1:03 am

I am not sure if the devs will read this...

But frankly?

I think it's ironically because the Yooka-Laylee cast and setting has more potential. Yooka, for starters, is from the word go a deeper protagonist than his N64 analogue ; he's not solely defined by being the 'nice guy' of the duo, being more defined by a thirst for adventure and an actually in-universe unhealthy addiction to adventuring (to the point that he will jump into any opportunity for a quest by NPCs, without getting all the details).

Meanwhile, Laylee is also less defined by being the 'snarky one', with hints regarding the fact that she doesn't want to go on on adventures as much, is actually less of a jerk than she want people to think (when faced with quests that truly go wrong, Laylee become genuinely uneasy and shift the blame to Yooka).

There are also hints about some serious differences in their relationship, especially with some of the jokes and dialogue points in the second half of the game.

On the villain side, Capital B is actually surprisingly interesting and V.I.L.E. is a much larger scale organisation involving a massive conspiracy and a long-reaching evil, with a much more grandiose goal than the petty machinations of Gruntilda. Likewise, the loyalty of V.I.L.E. officers is not as clear cut as the villain dynamic of the Winkybunion sisters (won't give spoilers on that point).

Add to this a setting and theme that revolve specifically about writing, stories, the rewriting and creation of reality through magical writing, and the struggle of various factions over the control of reality and we have the recipe for a story that can go way, waaaay beyond the original Banjo-Kazooie model in terms of humor, drama, story arcs, and depth.


...

... which lead to the game's paradoxal problem: Yooka-Laylee's cast and setting could be so much more. But in-game, what we got is only Banjo-Kazooie with barely any hints of what it could be.

We have elements for a grand story that practically write itself... and instead, we were given a re-tread of Banjo-Kazooie almost 1:1.


And that is why opinions on the story are so utterly mixed. Because if you read the character profiles and get the hints, there's definitely something here. But it is not properly used. Simply put, we have unused potential.


And that is why I think it cause such problems ; it's one thing to have a simple story when you have a setting that obviously cannot be pushed farther. But the Yooka-Laylee setting can very obviously be pushed farther.



And that's the reason, I feel, why people make such a big deal of the story being simple and bash it. We have the potential to have something that could easily surpass the source material... and instead, we have an accurate throwback.

If you can accept it as what it is (a throwback), the story is fine. But for those who had wished for the setting to shine on its own and grow past its roots, it leave an empty feeling. Like having a cool magician on a stage but never having him pull out anything out of his hat.


That is, at least, the feeling I get from speaking from those who were disappointed and actually explain themselves instead of just saying "It sucks".

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EekumBokum202
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby EekumBokum202 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 2:02 am

ATTENTION PLAYTONIC!
For development "Twoka-Laylee", please watch these:



For everyone else, talk about these videos !

Yuke Quantum
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby Yuke Quantum » Mon Apr 17, 2017 6:40 am

I still think they're pirates, still enjoyed the story, and still think it had as compelling characters as BK.

Where did they originally get the book? They probably stole it; it explains why they didn't realize how valuable it is.



And as for no grandiose death

It's also the kickoff game from Playtonic and I'm sure we'll get more awesome games like YL and more backstory too. I was satisfied with this game and at NO point did I think the game was anything different than what was promised.
-Yuke Quantum
the thirst exploder

mickeythelegend
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby mickeythelegend » Mon Apr 17, 2017 1:47 pm

DK. Donkey Kong. DK. Donkey Kong is here. :D

KomaruTheHylian
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Re: Why was the story so bland and uninteresting?

Postby KomaruTheHylian » Mon Apr 17, 2017 7:16 pm

Thats a good point.
Gameover screen shouldve showed Capital B erasing the universe and rewriting it his own way...evil worlds?....or something.
We seen Tootie become ugly and lost forever.


But I do believe this game is setting up for a bigger plot. The end hints at evil organizations and V.I.L.E.
Hoping this gets dark to the levels of tooie (I dont want trowzers to die though as bottles did).


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