Banjo-Tooie is a platform and action-adventure hybrid video game developed by Rare and published by Nintendo in 2000 for the Nintendo 64 as a part of the Banjo-Kazooie series. The game is the successor to Banjo-Kazooie and was one of the most anticipated sequels for the Nintendo 64.
The game's story takes place two years after Banjo-Kazooie. The antagonist, Gruntilda Winkybunion and her sisters, Mingella and Blobbelda, are planning to restore Gruntilda's body to its original form. Banjo and Kazooie must stop them before it is too late.
As a platformer, the game is groundbreaking in that the levels are not stand-alone areas linked only by the overworld; on many occasions in the game the player is required to cross between the levels, or return to a level after learning a new skill in order to use it. The train stations in most levels are an integral part of this system; once the station has been opened, it is possible to move between levels on the train. This is vital to completing the game.
Banjo and Kazooie start the game with all the abilities they had by the end of Banjo-Kazooie, but they will gain additional moves by finding Jamjars in various worlds. In addition to these, there are three optional abilities to obtain: the Amaze-O-Gaze Glasses (which allows Banjo to zoom in and out in first person; gained by talking to Goggles), faster swimming (gain from saving Roysten the goldfish, who also provides additional bubbles for underwater usage), and the Breegull Bash (awarded by bringing the Pink Special Egg to Heggy the Hen).
The game takes place two years after the witch Gruntilda was defeated by Banjo and Kazooie in the first game, at the end of which she was buried alive under a rock with her assistant, Klungo, trying to save her.
As the game's one-player mode opens on a stormy night, Banjo, Kazooie, Mumbo Jumbo, and Bottles are enjoying a game of poker in Banjo's house, where Bottles and Kazooie continue to lose spectacularly to Mumbo. Meanwhile, a giant drill machine, called Hag 1, is burrowing into Spiral Mountain through the cliff. Those in the house feel the rumbling of the machine and Mumbo goes out to investigate the commotion. Outside, the mischievous goon Klungo is helping Mingella and Blobbelda, rescue their witch sister, Grunty. They succeed in reviving Grunty, although the time she spent underground has rotted off her flesh, leaving her no more than a living skeleton with witch's robes. Mumbo witnesses this ceremony, and speeds back to Banjo's house to warn his friends. The witches give chase, and Grunty hurls a deadly spell at the house. Forewarned, Banjo, Kazooie, and Mumbo get away in time, but Bottles, suspecting the claim that Grunty is back to be a trick by Mumbo to win the rest of his money, stays put and is caught in the blast. The witches speed away in their Hag 1 machine, and Banjo and Kazooie watch as Bottles wobbles out of their destroyed house and dies at their feet. Shaken, they agree that they must chase down Grunty and foil her plans once more. Mumbo informs them that he will return to his hut and prepare some magic to aid them.
Banjo and Kazooie follow the trail of the Hag 1 to Jinjo Village, which they discover to be devoid of Jinjos, with the Gray Jinjo House destroyed by the Hag 1. Confused, they approach King Jingaling, king of the Jinjos, who informs them that a kickball tournament is to start within the week, but without his Jinjo subjects, he has no team. Banjo and Kazooie agree to help find his subjects, and he consequently gives them a Jiggy (a golden jigsaw puzzle piece) to help them on their journey. Shortly after their departure, we learn that Grunty's sisters have created B.O.B. (Big-O-Blaster), a tremendous machine that can suck the life force out of people and places. Grunty's sisters agree to let her use it, but only if she stops speaking in rhyme. She agrees, and they decide to test B.O.B. on the Jingaling, who is instantly turned into a zombie, with his palace now an ugly grey color. Grunty eagerly states that she wishes to next zap Banjo and Kazooie and the whole island with them, but her sisters inform her that B.O.B. must first charge up, which will take hours to do so. Grunty reassures them that, without King Jingaling or Bottles around to help them, there will not be any way for them to reach Cauldron Keep in time.
Meanwhile, Banjo and Kazooie take a shortcut through Bottles' house to reach the Isle o' Hags, where they meet Master Jiggywiggy, a mysterious sorcerer who agrees to help them open up the worlds on the island if they present a proper amount of Jiggies and solve his puzzles. Their adventure thus begins.
On their journey they collect a total of 90 Jiggies, and receive help from old and new friends. They often stumble upon Mumbo's hut, where he agrees to go out and use his magic to open up new passageways for them. They also encounter Sergeant Jamjars, Bottles' soldier brother, who agrees to teach the duo new attacks (if, of course, they can present the proper number of musical notes). They also meet Humba Wumba, a female Native American and Mumbo's arch-rival in magic who requests magical Glowbos in exchange for transforming Banjo and Kazooie into something else.
Finally, the pair reaches Cauldron Keep, Grunty's castle. After facing her henchman Klungo and taking her "Tower of Tragedy" quiz (dispatching of Grunty's sisters in the process), they hurry upstairs to reverse the effects of B.O.B., thus reviving Bottles and Jingaling. They then rush to the top of the tower and face off with Grunty in her Hag 1 machine. The duo eventually destroy the Hag 1 with the witch trapped inside as it explodes. The explosion destroys most of her body, leaving her nothing more than a talking skull. Banjo and Kazooie return to the Isle o' Hags to celebrate with their friends, as well as kicking around Grunty's head, much to her own disgust. She vows to have her revenge in the game's sequel, referred to as "Banjo-Threeie" which would later be confirmed as the sequel but was called "Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts".
For reasons that are unknown, Rare apparently left a fully-functional, though inaccessible mode in the game where Player 2 plays as an undead version of Bottles the Mole and can take control of enemy characters to hinder Banjo in his quest. The player cannot take control of bosses however, due to Bottles leaving when entering a room to fight a boss, stating "I'm not needed here." The Rare Witch Project released a GameShark code so users can play this mode, and additionally the cheat code part of the Project 64 emulation software can access this. It is assumed that this mode was originally intended to be used in gameplay (it was playable somewhat at E3, supposedly) but scrapped for reasons unknown (possibly programming difficulties). The face of "Devil Bottles" appears with one of the questions in the Tower of Tragedy. "Devil Bottles" is also pictured in a sheet with all Banjo-Tooie characters on it, which could be won in a Banjo-Tooie contest on Rare's website, back whenever the game was released in a specific region, in 2001. In 2006 Rare said that the reason Bottles' Revenge was scrapped was because they ran out of time to debug it, although, "It did work rather well." They also mentioned that Bosses were meant to be able to be controllable in Bottles' Revenge, but the only Boss that they had working in the mode when they dropped it was Old King Coal. Old King Coal is not controllable in the version of Bottles' Revenge that appears in the game.
Game Rankings: 90% (based on 18 reviews)
Metacritic: 90 of 100 (based on 15 reviews)
Game Informer: 9/10
On September 27, 2006, Microsoft and Rare announced at X06 that the series would return after eight years on the Xbox 360. The IGN website featured a teaser trailer for the upcoming game, which was later revealed to be titled Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts.