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Banjo-Kazooie's fairy tale back story is reminiscent of Snow White's. A gnarled, ugly witch named Gruntilda asks her magical cauldron who is the fairest of them all. Of course, the pot's answer doesn't please the hag: he singles out Banjo's sister, Tooty. When Tooty turns up missing, Banjo and his birdie buddy Kazooie set out to find her.

The worlds in Banjo-Kazooie are vast, and contain a variety of items to collect. Musical Notes, Puzzle Pieces ("Jiggies"), Mumbo Tokens, and Jinjoes are just some of the swag that Banjo must stuff in his backpack to complete his adventure. While some of the necessary items are simply stashed off the beaten path, others will require puzzle solving skills to turn up.


Banjo-Kazooie Nintendo 64 Exploring Captain Blubber's ship, the salty hippo.
Banjo-Kazooie Xbox 360 Rescuing the treasure from the flooded hold for Captain Blubber
Banjo-Kazooie Nintendo 64 Title screen
Banjo-Kazooie Xbox 360 Grunty is furious that her cauldron says that she isn't fairest of them all!

Promo Images

Banjo-Kazooie Render Introducing the Stars
Banjo-Kazooie Screenshot Clanker
Banjo-Kazooie Screenshot
Banjo-Kazooie Screenshot Snacker the Shark


Alternate Titles

  • "バンジョーとカズーイの大冒険" -- Japanese spelling
  • "Dream" -- Working title
  • "Banjo to Kazooie no Daibōken" -- Japanese title
  • "Banjo Kazoo" -- Early title (changed due to copyright issues)

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

The Bear and Bird Nintendo 64 Matt Neuteboom (989)
Better than Mario 64! *hides* Nintendo 64 Asinine (1006)
You don't have an N64?? Oh I'm so sorry.... Nintendo 64 MegaMegaMan (2285)
Not ONLY for younger players. Nintendo 64 Horny-Bullant (59)
A great game for kids and adults Nintendo 64 gamewarrior (5042)

Critic Reviews

Consoles Plus Nintendo 64 Aug, 1998 96 out of 100 96
Quebec Gamers Nintendo 64 Oct 17, 2002 9.4 out of 10 94
Retro Gamer Xbox 360 Jan 02, 2009 92 out of 100 92
Game Revolution Nintendo 64 Jul 01, 1998 A- 91
Meristation Nintendo 64 Jun 15, 1998 9 out of 10 90
Joystick (French) Nintendo 64 Sep, 1998 88 out of 100 88 Xbox 360 Jan, 2009 8.2 out of 10 82
Adrenaline Vault, The (AVault) Nintendo 64 Nov 08, 1998 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80 Xbox 360 Dec 11, 2008 8 out of 10 80
Random Access Nintendo 64 Apr 10, 2013 7.9 out of 10 79


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1001 Video Games

Banjo-Kazooie appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


  • Back when Banjo-Kazooie was still Dream, in its initial stages it began life on the SNES, using the next generation of Donkey Kong Country style pre-rendered graphics.
  • Banjo-Kazooie had quite a few different main characters before settling on the Honey Bear in the blinding yellow shorts. Originally, back when the game was still Dream, it starred a young boy with a wooden sword and a pet dog. The young boy was then replaced with a rabbit with a dog. Who was then replaced with a bear and a dog. And then finally, Banjo and Kazooie.
  • During development, sixteen worlds were planned. However, it was decided that it would take too long to achieve this and they were cut down to nine worlds. Some worlds were joined with others in Banjo-Kazooie, while others provided inspiration for worlds in Banjo-Tooie.


When Banjo-Kazooie was being designed, it was planned to connect with its future sequel. Special, secret items were shown to be hidden during the game's ending. The way players would be able to access the items would be by pulling out one cart out of the console while the system was on, and then quickly inserting the cart you wanted to transfer the items to. Dubbed Stop 'n' Swop, the original concept had to be terminated. According to an MTV Multiplayer 2008 interview with Rare lead software engineer Salvatore Fileccia:
...the reason Nintendo soured on the idea was because of revisions to the N64 circuitry. Older versions of the system would have given gamers a full 10 seconds to remove the Kazooie cartridge and insert the Tooie one. Newer iterations of the N64 would have given gamers just one second.


  • "Twycross England" is written on the back of the boat in Rusty Bucket Bay - which happens to be where Rare headquarters is located in real life.
  • At one part in the game Mumbo Jumbo claims he is saving the T-Rex for the next game. A T-Rex was indeed playable in the games sequel Banjo-Tooie.

Xbox 360 version

When ported to the Xbox 360 the Nintendo logo was removed, however Banjo still appears to be playing a Game Boy in the third save slot.


  • Game Informer
    • August 2001 (Issue #100) - #71 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll
  • Retro Gamer
    • Issue 37 - #16 in the "Top 25 Platformers of All Time" poll
Information also contributed by atadota, BenK and MegaMegaMan

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Contributed to by Kam1Kaz3NL77 (459048), Sciere (780625), Ben K (23888), Chris Martin (1204) and MAT (230299)
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