the Epic Games Store had a fairly strong start to the year, with the sci-fi grand strategy game Galactic Civilization 3 and the armored core spiritual successor Demon x Machina both being decent free offerings from the platform. As January drew to a close, Epic Games Store users began to speculate about next month’s free games.
Epic Games has just announced that the next free game in the store will be Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Laira 2D platformer full of charm, and which could scratch the itch of fans of Banjo-Kazooie Where donkey kong country. The game will be available for free on the Epic Games Store on February 4 and will be available until February 10.
Yooka-Laylee and the influences of the Impossible Lair
Just looking at a screenshot of the game, it’s pretty obvious that Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair takes a lot of inspiration from the mascot platforms of yore. In fact, many of the game’s developers, Playtonic Games, are former employees of Rare, a legendary studio known for its work on GoldenEye 007, perfect darkand of course renowned mascot platforms like Banjo-Kazooie and donkey kong country.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lairthe predecessor to , the simply titled 2017 platformer Yooka-Layleeattempted to reinvigorate the 3D mascot platformer genre, but was met with lackluster reviews upon release. The impossible lair moves the characters in a different direction, this time using 2D gameplay, mimicking donkey kong countrythe prospect more than Banjo-Kazooie‘s.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair Plot
Wearing his influences on his sleeve, Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair has an extremely simple plot. The game takes place in a largely fantasy setting, where players take control of a duo of lizards and bats named Yooka and Laylee respectively.
The plot sees an anthropomorphic bee, named Capital B, using a “Hivemind” device to wreak havoc in the Royal Stingdom. It’s up to Yooka and Laylee to rescue the Royal Beettalion Guards from Queen Phoebee and stop Capital B, who is hiding in the Impossible Lair.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair gameplay
For the vast majority of the game, Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair uses traditional 2D platform gameplay. Players take control of Yooka and Laylee simultaneously and can use a variety of classic 2D platforming moves like jumping, swimming, climbing vines, and performing rolling attacks. If the player is hit, then Laylee will fly around the stage and need to be caught by the player. While Laylee is with Yooka, both can perform a single aerial attack.
The main gameplay hook of The impossible lair is that technically the final level can be played immediately, with the titular Impossible Lair being available from the start. The only problem is that the lair is quite difficult, so players will probably want to go through the other stages of the game, where they can save Beettalion guards to gain an extra hit point per saved guard.
Players can also use Tonics, which can be found throughout the game stages and the 3D world. Up to three tonics can be used per level, each significantly altering the gameplay of that level. Some Tonics help the player, such as “Thick Skin”, which gives Yooka more invincibility frames, and “Slow Mo”, which gives the player the ability to slow down time at three points in the level. On the other hand, some Tonics can get in the way of the player, but add a bonus Quill Multiplier to the scene. Some Tonics give the player new visual options, such as the “Yooka64” Tonic which gives Yooka and Laylee a 64-bit makeover.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair will be available on the Epic Games Store from February 4 to 10.
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