A couple of weeks ago, the first trailer dropped for a brand new episodic Conker game. Many fans were disappointed to learn that instead of receiving a full game release, Conker was being relegated to an episodic DLC game released through Project Spark and they were afraid it wouldn’t deliver a traditional Conker experience. If the latest trailer is any indication, fans can rest easy knowing that Conker’s Big Reunion will be sticking close to the traditional 3D platforming roots that made the Nintendo 64 original an instant classic.
From this latest trailer, we have learned how Conker’s Big Reunion will play, which was a relative unknown since the product’s announcement at last year’s E3 event. The gameplay appears to be in line with the original Conker, seeing the titular foul-mouthed squirrel completing platforming sequences, using his tail to hover, and engaging in battles with the dreaded evil teddy bears.
Conker will be battling the bears (known as Tediz in the franchise’s universe) with his trusty frying pan, used frequently in his original adventure. The combat has gotten an upgrade since the Nintendo 64 game, as it appeared in the trailer that Conker is busting out more complicated combos with the frying pan than he did before.
Interestingly, this trailer, while still utilizing the crude humor the franchise is known for, has a far more depressing tone than the previously seen footage. Besides the foreboding narration, it also shows Conker’s favorite bar blown up. Fans of the original game will remember that this is very true to the original, which utilized dark humor while simultaneously taking Conker the Squirrel through a genuinely heartbreaking journey, despite all the giant singing excrement and busty sunflowers encountered along the way.
Amazingly, all of this was created using the in-game creation tools from the base game of Project Spark. The downside to this is that while the gameplay looks to be very faithful to its roots, the art style doesn’t hit the right nostalgic notes. Project Spark has a very distinct art style that is not in line with how Conker traditionally looks. Ultimately, what matters most is that it feels like a genuine Conker adventure from a gameplay perspective, and while an art style that more closely resembles the older games in the series would’ve been desirable, what’s on display in the latest trailer works well enough.
Despite somewhat disappointing artistic restrictions, having a new Conker adventure in any form offers plenty to be excited about considering there hasn’t been a peep from Conker since 2005’s Live & Reloaded on the original Xbox. Fans excited to try out Conker’s Big Reunion to see if it lives up to the legacy of its predecessors will have two different options available to them when the DLC launches later this month.
First of all, those that just want to play the new story should purchase Conker’s Big Reunion: Episode 1 which will be available for $4.99. Those that want the new story along with additional content can get Conker’s Big Reunion, 350 different Conker-themed assets for use throughout Project Spark, and two other game modes (Champions Quest and Crossroads), all for a total of $9.99.
If Conker’s Big Reunion sells well enough, Microsoft would be much more willing to bring back the squirrel for his own game. Lately, Microsoft has shown to be much more interested in working with Rare‘s classic IP, as evidenced by the addition of the Battletoads in Shovel Knight. There’s even a rumor that Disney and Microsoft are producing an animated film based on Banjo-Kazooie.
Conker fans don’t have to wait long to get their hands on this new content. Anyone with Project Spark, available as a free download for PC, Xbox 360, and Xbox One, can purchase and download Conker’s Big Reunion and the additional content when it becomes available on April 23rd.
Source: Game Informer