A new Yooka-Laylee game titled, Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is releasing this year on consoles and PC. The first Yooka-Laylee released in 2017 after a successful Kickstarter campaign.
Yooka-Laylee was developed by Playtonic Games, a group made up of former Rare employees. Rare was of course the developer behind the critically acclaimed Donkey Kong Country series on SNES, and Banjo-Kazooie on Nintendo 64. Yooka-Laylee was intended as a spiritual successor to Banjo-Kazooie, containing an identical gameplay style and look. In the game, you play in open 3D areas in search of collectible items. The game received decent reviews, with the highest Metacritic score being 75. Not many expected another game, but it seems Playtonic has big plans for Yooka-Laylee.
Today, Playtonic Games announced Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair. The company's website describes the game as a "2D Platforming Adventure Hybrid." A trailer was released, showing the title's 2D levels, as well as the 3D overworld. Check it out below.
The game's 2D levels appear to be taking inspiration from the Donkey Kong Country Returns series. Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is already differentiating itself from the first game. Instead of being a "collectathon," it looks like there will be traditional platforming, along with a 3D overworld map to traverse. Interestingly, Playtonic says the game is not a direct sequel to the first. In fact, the company apparently has "lotsplanned for the future of the Yooka-Laylee universe," and wants to approach each game with a "fresh take." Playtonic says we can expect to hear more about the game during E3.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is already looking like a fun followup. Although Yooka-Laylee was liked by many, a common criticism among critics was the collectathon implementation. The genre isn't popular today, so the game emulating it without changing some of the more arguably outdated aspects, prevented it from being as critically acclaimed as it could have been. The new game is adding what looks to be well designed platforming, while also featuring some 3D gameplay.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair will be released for Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One and PC later this year. According to Playtonic, the game will be released digitally across all platforms, and there will be a physical edition for consoles.