Friday, September 25, 1998

Scribes: September 25, 1998

Dear Scribes,

I have to say before I begin, that Banjo-Kazooie is a great game, but there is one thing that I can't stand: those stupid Jinjos.

Cute?! CUTE?!!!! Obviously whoever said that has a wall full of ceramic cats and lawn gnomes. All they do is yell at you (and now and then whistle) to save their sorry butts. In the players guide, it says they are birds, so why don't they just fly away? And if they can't do that, they got feet! Dumb Birds... No wonder Mumbo wears that mask so we can't tell that he is as well a Jinjo just so I don't get the hidden PP7 in Clanker's Cavern and shoot his sorry hide... he dare turn me into a washine machine...

On a side note, howzabout you put Banjo and Bond in a game! Yeah, I can see it now, Banjo hunts down the Jinjos, puts them in a tennis ball machine (y'know the ones that shoot the tennis balls, duh) and Bond can use them as target practice before he goes out and ventilates Gruntilda. YEAH!!!

Anyhoo, I believe I have wasted a tidy sum of your precious few minutes. I'll let you explain to the children out there where you dirty rats put the PP7 (Hint: There is a secret chamber underneath Clanker's head). Keep the games on rolling!

Rare Says:

You make a number of sensible points. No, hang on, I was looking at the wrong letter. (Comedy turn to camera.)

The Jinjos have been magically rooted to the spot by Gruntilda, don't you read the blurb, man? And here's what the artist responsible had to say in response to your other foul accusations:

"The Jinjos are not birds, they are Jinjos. One defining characteristic feature of the bird family, a feature that makes it stand out from other creatures such as mammals and reptiles, is WINGS. Now look at a Jinjo, it has a head, two legs and quite obviously two ARMS!

"And as for this crazy idea that Mumbo may share some common body parts with the Jinjos - what a load of nonsense, do you really think that the artist would be that cheap? :)"

Dear Scribes,

Do you guys like to torture your diehard fans on purpose?

As I type this, it has now been one year, 9 months, and 11 days since a new DKC game. I've had DKL III, sure, and Diddy Kong Racing and Banjo-Kazooie. But you've already said you were working on DKC64. Can't you at least show us one little screen shot? It can even be from the end credits, I don't care anymore! You've turned this once sane, perfectly healthy man, into a sobbering, little, pathetic, puddle of sorrow. Will it be 64DD compatiable? Will it star all four main Kongs? Will it be in 3-D or 2-D? You guys don't care about telling us, oh no.

I respect your decision to make it perfect. But you haven't even made an official announcement yet! When is the projected release date? You won't tell! As far as I can confirm, you just want to pull a Diddy Kong Racing on us, where you announce the game almost right before it's release. You said that you would put any worthwhile news on your website. Just tell us one, tiny little thing, besides the fact that it will be for the N64. Do it for your fans.

Rare Says:

All we can say is that we'll show you the goods when we're ready. Yes, of course we want to get it as damn near perfect as we can, and no, we're not trying to annoy everyone by clinging onto it for so long. Just bear with us. Here's an amazing
DKC64 fact to tide you over: Donkey Kong will be making a return to the limelight at last. You probably could have guessed that anyway, but, you know, you did ask. Oi! Stop spitting at me.


Say it ain't so! A friend of mine who claims to have inside info on games that aren't even released yet just told me that Perfect Dark won't be released in the US! I've been waiting so long for another game like Goldeneye (a first person shooter that is fun, but not too bloody) and now I'm hearing that it won't happen! Perfect Dark looks like a terrific game, and I have been really hyped up about it! PLEASE TELL ME THAT YOU ARE RELEASING IT IN THE US!

Rare Says:

I'm sorry, but after a series of lengthy meetings to discuss the matter, Rare has finally decided to abandon the worthless US market, scale down European operations to the point of dormancy and focus all remaining resources on the substantially more lucrative Tristan da Cunha sector. You divot.

Dear Scribes,

The first time I played DKR I picked Tiptup and I still use him to this day. He is the greatest racer this world has ever known. I was happy to see that Tiptup was in Banjo-Kazooie as well, but, how could you make a game without him? right?

The other day, I when to the store and said to the clerk, "I would like to purchase 'Heaven and Shell: Tiptup 64' please."The clerk gave me a funny look and replied, "We don't carry will have to try another store."Now, anyone knows that if a store doesn't have all the BEST merchandise, it goes under, and since this store was still standing I figured I had the name wrong. "What about 'Slow and Steady 64'" I asked."Look, pal." The clerk said, " All the games we have are in the glass case over there." He pointed to the N64 section. That was when I realized that Tiptup DIDN'T HAVE A GAME.

Now, Diddy has his own games and they count for Krunch, too. Banjo has his own game (obviously). Timber, Drumstick, T.T. and Pipsy all live on the Island so, DKR is THEIR game (even if it's called DIDDY KONG Racing). Conker has not one but TWO titles comming out. That leaves Tiptup and Bumper. I don't know WHERE Bumper came from and, frankly, I don't care.

I have a vision of Tiptup going on a wild adventure in which Tiptup learns not to be so clumsy and less frightened by things. I call it 'Tiptup Comes Out of his Shell' or 'One Shell of an Adventure: Tiptup 64'. Aided by his slow witted but well meaning brute of a friend TankTup (the giant living concert hall in BK) Tiptup must battle an evil Hare (the tortise and the Hare have been locked in mortal combat since the beginning of time) who has kidnapped Tiptup's choir. At the end, Tiptup dusts off his old kart for one last race, and this time, the Hare won't be caught sleeping.

Now, I admit I made some rash decisions before writing this letter. My original plan was to force you to make the game through Terrorism. (Another flash-back... Cue wavy lines)

My plan was ready and I ran from my house. I could not risk entering your HQ so I hid outside in the bushes. As I waited, I pondered just how sharp the edge of my T.V. remote control really was. I thought about touching the seemingly blunt, rounded off edge but could not, through fear that my fingertip would be sliced clear off. Suddenly, I heard someone exiting the building. The plan was to kill just one of the staff. That way, the rest could hire someone to replace him and make the game...or else. I leapt from my hideaway, trusty T.V. remote in hand, and unleashed handheld, plastic fury at the man before me. When I stopped, I saw that my prey had endured, unscathed by my blade. He was looking at me, perplexed, like I was an impossible to get glass key. 'DAMN!' I thought, 'He must be some kind of Super-Human!'. I should have thought of the possibility before. The makers of such fine games would have to be more that just your ordinary Johnny Lunchpail, Joe Blow or John Q. Public. With no options left, I fled from the scene, running like the wind back to my home. FOILED!

Now, I'm sure you don't remember this so I'll tell you why. You see, I live in Canada, not England, and since the attack took place within running distance from my home... It turned out I attacked a bakery,

I will spare you the tale of how I tried to raise Tiptup-Awareness in my community by putting on a Tenage Mutant Ninja Turtles costume, spread bannanas and balloons all over a go-cart track, and challenged people to race. I learned a few things that day. Let me just say that:

1) Balloons float away.

2) Running over bananas hinders your speed, and doesn't increase it as you would like us to believe.

3) I sat on my remote and not only was I not impaled, but my pants didn't even rip. I now use it as a club, striking people with the battery filled end.

4) When you hit the gas as you hear 'GO!' you do not zip forward at high speed but run over and get stuck on the-guy-that-works-there-who-didn't-get-out-of-the-way-fast-enough.

So, after all my mis-adventures, I decided a letter would be the best course of action. Make no mistake, you WILL give Tiptup his rightly deserved game. I'm sure once people read this, EVERYONE will be chanting the name...."TIPTUP! TIPTUP! TIPTUP! TIPTUP!"

Thanks for your time,
Eric Rosenlund a.k.a. Beb

Rare Says:

What is it about Tiptup that inspires such mindless devotion? I'd have voted Timber's mad staring eyes the most likely cause of brainwashing in DKR, if anything. And Tiptup does actually live on Timber's island with the rest of them - what other reason could there be for letting the clumsy, babbling idiot join in all the races?

Still, out of a nagging sense of fair play, I put the matter to DKR's designer and he had this to say: "There has been a huge demand for a new game starring Tip Tup which has beentotally unexpected. Tip Tup will return, but not yet in a game of his own. Look out for the little fella in 1999."

Meanwhile, if any other readers have an opinion on what exactly it is that makes Tiptup such a favourite, we're always ready to feign a polite interest.

Dear Scribes,

This is the second time I have written your institution, and have yet to recieve any reply about me being admitted into it. The flying elves are getting worse and just won't seem to leave me alone. Everyday I wake up, they pelt me with hordes and hordes of beanie babies (and I don't care what they say my ass looks nothing like an onion). I'm beginning to think the elves are in on it with my friends, cause every time I swat one down and show it to them they just say something like, "Yes, that is a fine looking one", and shortly after leave my house. Well anyway, I really could use those things I eat that make me feel happy (ya know, those oval shaped things you get at the drug store...I think they're made by Hostess). I still think Rarewear is a weird name for a mental institution.

Love always,
P.S. Why do the patients answer the email?

Rare Says:

Dear Mr. O'Siris,
Further to your repeated correspondence of September 1998, I regret to inform you that your application to the Rareware Institute has been turned down. Your constant references to "flying elves" and "oval shaped things" have triggered a series of untimely
Yoshi's Story flashbacks amongst the patients, from which some have yet to recover. We hold you personally responsible for this incident and the lads are on their way round at this very moment with monkey wrenches and sticks.

Dear Scribes,

So when are you going to stop printing those letters written by people who hate us Americans with a vengeance (i.e. Sam Kirk). Gee we "lazy-assed" Americans don't make any good games, do we? We must suck. All we must do is sit on our lazy American bums and watch pointless TV programs. We don't make any good games at all. Ok, enough of the sarcasm. We (well, not me) do make good games. I will list just a few: Turok, WCW VS. NWO: World Tour, all three Star Wars games (Episodes 4, 5, 6) for SNES, SOTE, WWF Warzone, MK4, Twisted Metal 1 and 2, Colony Wars, Wipeout XL. The list goes on and on. Some upcoming good games by us stupid Americans: Turok 2, Rogue Squadron, Revenge, Rogue Trip, Vengeance, etc, etc etc... Well I hope the Anti-Americans can see that the American game industry doesn't suck at all, and we do in fact make great games. Thanks for listening,
Rick Coan

Rare Says:

Mr. Sam Kirk is also American, as far as I could tell. Very PC. And it's the letters that actually have something to say that get printed, simple as that - there's no prejudice on our part. What do you want, a page full of people saying "Banjo's dead good" and me saying "Oh, cheers"? How riveting would that be?

Of course the games industry (in America as in any other part of the world) turns out some quality stuff to make up for the inevitable dross, or it would have collapsed in on itself years ago. Still, inflammatory letters are always welcome - you can't beat a good slanging match, even in text form.

Dear Scribes,

Ahhhh!!!! I hate you!!! You've spoiled life for me!!! I had so much fun playing Banjo that any other platform game just does NOT cut it in the least! What am I to do, play Spyro the Dragon? BOR-ING! So I just wanted to thank you for ruining the one little bright spot in an otherwise drab existence. "Thanks" she said sarcastically.
Jennifer Starling

Rare Says:

Oh no! It's a letter saying "Banjo's dead good". How inconvenient. Er, we'll try to get Banjo-Tooie out as soon as possible without making it crap. Are you any relation to Joseph?

(PS Oh, cheers.)

Dear Rare,

Let me get right to the point. I think you guys have one of the best names for a fighting game in Killer Instinct, hands down. Immediately you think of an epic fighting tournament like Enter the Dragon. Now if you made a fighting game and gave it that special Rare touch, it would kick the living SH*T out of Tekken. I'm not talking about combo memorization here either, like the two previous Killer Instincts...

I am a videogame expert, one of the most talented around. If I dedicate myself to a game, I never come across anyone who can beat me. Why do I dedicate myself to certain games? Because they had serious depth and were very fun to play. The two games that come to mind are Street Fighter 2 Turbo, and F-Zero. Tekken 3 comes close, but I think the control is a little too "mechanical". Since Namco had three incarnations to make their game the way they want, I know you guys would need lots of time to develop a game like this.

Now think if you put your best team on a game such as this. It would be utterly magnificent. I know you guys are too busy right now to be working on a fighting game, but PLEASE let it be your next project. I know something like this would sell more than something like Jet Force Gemini. Don't get me wrong, it looks great, but what the hell is it all about? You guys already have a cool name in Killer Instinct, why wouldn't you want to put your time into something that would inevitably sell millions? Perhaps it's for the better, on the dawn of 256megabit carts, (maybe even 512, c'mon, I know you guys can do it!), and the RAM expansion pak. Yes, perhaps it's better that you do it now than before, because I know you use games like Jet Force Gemini to be the testing waters for new technologies and ideas you guys have. Why risk a new technology on a franchise, right?

I'm glad you guys are still with me. I have one more thing to say. I know you guys have some serious technical genius, probably rivaling Nintendo's, and so I must ask you why it seems so hard for a company to make a fighter for the N64? Is it just because these people are going half arse or what? (By the way, I actually do like to use that word.) Look at Dual Heroes and Konami's crap fighting game. (It's not even worth remembering the name!) I know Rare can one-up everybody by a considerable margin! Please make it so! Thank you for your time.
Cliff Hudson
p.s Hey, think about making Enter the Dragon, I know Namco put up a Bruce Lee wanna be in Tekken 3, but why no have the real deal? All the elements are there for a great fighter! Trust me on this one! (Goldeneye anyone?)

Rare Says:

Once more, all I can do is reiterate: while we deny working on a fighting game at present, we've never said anything about refusing to consider it in times ahead. There may well come a day in the not-too-distant future when we get working on
KI3, or a brand new beat-'em-up franchise, or whatever. But the serious lack of decent 3D fighters on the N64 should tell you something about how difficult it is to get the balance right in this type of game - it's more to do with the fundamental trickiness of the genre than it is to do with lacklustre developers. But enough off-topic poncey verbosity, I'll just leave it at that: we haven't said we won't do another fighting game. And you never know.

Rarewhere People:

Speak English!... American English, that is. You thought you had this cleared up, right? Well, words like "risqué" and "poncey" make no sense in your .com and .net sites here in the U.S., and my dad says that I shouldn't know about that "Maya joke" on /recent/games/ki2. Your jokes aren't that understandable anyway.
Mike Pelensky
Rare Says:

While 'poncey' might well be a steaming great Britism, 'risqué' is a perfectly acceptable word in any dialect: some of my thesaurus' alternatives are 'spicy', 'ribald' and 'indelicate'. I wouldn't worry about not understanding the jokes - they're all crap anyway.

Dear Scribes,

Why is there no violence in Goldeneye? Who made, or forced, the decision to leave out blood (and brains and bone)? Nintendo got heavy slagging from the industry press some years ago when they refused to allow the SNES conversion of Mortal Kombat to have any red stuff in it, despite the fact that the other conversions all had lashings of gore. Was it a Nintendo decision, or did the Rare designers just wimp out of their own accord? Resident Evil sold extremely well despite, or more precisely, because of, its high gore content. Is Goldeneye another example of the fact that many games companies don't seem to want to cater for the needs of a more mature audience who can handle more adult themes and content?

Why do the dead bodies rez out after a few seconds? I've read something somewhere about how the game would eventually stop if they didn't, but I don't understand why that should be so. Surely, if they're in the game, the game has to handle the data for them regardless of whether they're moving or not? Obviously, on some of the instant respawn levels, like the end of the Facility once you've talked with Trevelyan, it would make things tricky as the corridor would soon be hip-deep in dead soldiers. But that'd be cool. Plant a few remote mines, shoot 30 or 40 soldiers as they round the corner, then detonate the mines under the pile of corpses and wait for the rain of body parts... We're not all 12. We don't all want to play Super Mario.
Pihkaljar (

Rare Says:

Look what you've done now. The designer's been wanting to address this alarmingly common criticism for some time now, and you've just given him the opportunity. Taste his wrath, sir:

"The level of violence in Goldeneye is comparable to the level of violence in the Bond films. This means that dismemberment is not ever-present, and is confined to set-piece scenes that either serve to reinforce the evil nature of the central villain and/or his henchmen, or to provide the audience with a sense of justice in seeing the same thing happen to the central villain later in the film.
Resident Evil is not tied to any particular zombie flick, though it is clearly influenced by them. In such films, gore is more commonplace; it is moderated by the fantasy context of the genre. Re-animated corpses are not normal sights in the world of James Bond. If the game had been as violent as a zombie horror film, it would not have been a good representation or translation of GoldenEye or the characters in it, and in the eyes of the team it would have been wimping out to have simply added to an increasingly stagnant first-person shooter genre. It was far more risky to have the maturity of stealth and thinking your way through replacing the immaturity of gore and dismemberment as the core of the game. What, by the way, is specifically adult about demanding that your games have outrageous amounts of guts to be worth playing?

"The dead bodies fade out because if they did not, you would have to draw more polygons than the machine could handle to maintain the framerate, and as a result it would spend more time thinking about what to draw on the screen than actually drawing it. 'Respawning' means that once dead, the soldier is replaced by a spontaneously generated live copy; emphasis on the word 'generated'. It means that the soldiers are not hiding around the corner until their numbers are called, but are not actually there at all until they are created by the death of another soldier.

Super Mario would benefit you
enormously as it would sublimate your violent anti-social tendencies and give you a respect and appreciation of genuine gameplay which you appear to lack."

Dear Scribes,

In BK, in the begining when Banjo first meets Bottles, he acts like he doesn't know who that mole is. But, the funny thing is, if you go to Banjo's extremely small house you see a picture of Bottles over his fireplace. My guess: either the program guys aren't the brightest apples in the bunch, or Banjo is stalking Bottles. Which is it?
Rick Coan (again)

Rare Says:

Come on, it's never been much of a secret that Banjo fell off the stupid tree at an early age. And Bottles, kind and sensitive soul that he is, always tries to take the bear's comical slow-wittedness into consideration when talking to him.

Dear Scribes,

I looked in your Rare Life section and saw that picture of your current farmhouse building. And I gotta say yeah right, on my screen it ain't even two inches tall. How could you stuff a couple hundred programmers inside that little bitty building. Now, on globes and maps I've seen pictures of Britain that I could snugly fit under my thumbnail, but come on. What race of little people could possibly live over there? I apparently could squish all of you at once with one nice thwack (technical term, don't feel bad if you don't understand what it means) from my Goldeneye cartridge. And surrounded by water no less! One tiny wave and you all drown. And that future building of yours, it's even smaller. Longer, yes, but much smaller. Not good planning. I hope you take into consideration the many normal sized gamers out here and build a big wall so you don't get blown away by someone breathing hard. Then where would we get our games you inconsiderate b*****ds?

Thanks fer your time,
-Skippy (don't let that large S in my name fall on any of your most gifted programmers.)

Rare Says:

As it happens, we're finding the shoemaking business much more rewarding than the games business these days anyway. And what you can't make out from the artist's impression is that our new building is situated in a cluster of daisies at the bottom of a daydreaming child's garden, well protected from the grasp of cynical older children and hard-hearted disbelieving adults.


You know what I did? In Candy's Save place in DKC, I turned DK around when Candy blows a kiss, so she is kissing his butt! Hahaha!
Chad M.
Rare Says:

What did I do to deserve this job?

It says in IGN64 that there is a Shakespere code in B-K. Being both a Shakesphere and a B-K fan, I want to know if it is true.
Nir Rothenberg

Rare Says:

Yes: go to the sandcastle and type in M-R-G-U-L-L-I-B-L-E.

I was just wondering when you guys are releasing Office 99? Please update the Thesaurus as I couldn't find an alternative for "gumption".
Marjorie Tindall

Rare Says:

I admire your finely-tuned surrealism. Or are you just dense?

Is that blue guy really gay, or is this some kind of Brit joke?
Tom Horst

Rare Says:

Somebody please tell me what this man's talking about.

If you were on a desert island with Kazooie and starving, how would you like her cooked?

Rare Says:

I'd keep her alive to play with my
(No. - The Management)

Why does there even have to be a character in the survey section?
Michael C. Miller

Rare Says:

A good point, which will only depress me if I think about it.

What does arsed mean?

Rare Says:

I can't be bothered to tell you.

Monday, September 21, 1998

Ask Uncle Tusk: September 21, 1998

Dear Uncle Tuskie,

I have one little teeny-weeny question that shouldn't be any problem for your great, perhaps collective mind, regarding Blast Corps. My question, oh great one, is that of saving. Saved-game-management is easy and all when you have a memory pak, but how do you erase the game that "sticks" to the cart? (i.e. when it saves although you didn't use any mem-pak.)

Uncle Tusk replies:
Just hold down Start while you turn your N64 on, you dunce. And what do you mean by "collective mind"? Are you calling me schizophrenic? Not true. Just a bit excitable, that's all.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

I don't know if this is just with the Australian version of Banjo-Kazooie but on page 9 of my manual it says the pause menu options are:

Return to game

Exit to witch's lair

View totals

Save and quit
I don't know what happened but on my Australian copy it goes more like this:

Return to game

View totals

Save and quit

What happened to Exit to witch's lair? But Banjo-Kazooie is an awesome game, I look foward to purchasing Banjo-Tooie.
Travis Wood

Uncle Tusk replies:
That's what happens when the manual gets written months before the game's finished. New bits keep getting added while other bits get taken out. Originally Banjo and Kazooie only had to go to the pause menu and choose Exit To Witch's Lair to get out of a level at any time, but then we decided that making them trog all the way back to the start pad was much more fun. Har.

Hey Tusk!

I have Diddy Kong Racing and I have already beaten it to the max, hidden characters and all. But, when I used the jukebox code I noticed a song, #12, that isn't in any of the tracks. Is this a part of the overworld or something I haven't found yet? Please help me before I go nuts!!!
Frank Scafidi

Uncle Tusk replies:
You see that Pirate Lagoon? You hear that hidden music track? Well, the two used to go together, until for some reason or another the Lagoon found itself a new tune and the old one was consigned to 'hidden extra' status. So no, you haven't missed any secret areas. Probably.

Uncle Tusk -

I need help! I've got Donkey Kong Land 3 as a Christmas present last year, and the box clearly states that one of the animals is called Parry. I've searched everywhere..over and over again..but I can't find Parry! Where is he? Where? Must.. find... Parry..

Uncle Tusk replies:
Due to what were stressed as 'creative differences', Parry left the DK Animal Sidekicks to pursue a solo career between the making of Donkey Kong Country 3 and Donkey Kong Land 3, by which time it was too late to change the sleeve credits. His first solo game,
Parry On Up The Khyber, flopped dismally earlier this year and his contract was terminated. Now an alcoholic, Parry has lost the power of flight and lives in a box under DK's favourite tree, shouting slurred abuse throughout the early hours of the morning.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

If you don't mind my saying so, why is it that you only get around to answering anybody's questions once a month? Doesn't your letter stack bet big? What do you do all month when you're not answering letters written by us lowly drudges? Do you crochet mittens for when your hands get cold?

Don't kill me,
David Marsee

Uncle Tusk replies:
I don't answer the mail any more often because I'm a busy man - married or not, a barbarian's still expected to go out hacking and maiming on a regular basis if he's to retain any credibility. This whole agony uncle business is just a little sideline of mine. Anyway, most of the letters sent my way are too moronic to be worth answering.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

Are you married? Do you have children or did you eat them or something?

Anyway... here's the Question... GoldenEye OO7... Cuba, Jungle... I swear that I saw Jaws there, When I was shooting all these guys, Natalya said "Who was that guy?" then I turned around and I saw a back of a guy wearing brown suspenders run away, I tried to follow him but he was to darn fast! Is that really him, or am I going crazy with GoldenEye Fever?

See ya, wouldn't want to be ya,
Graig Polacco

Uncle Tusk replies:
More likely your eyes are starting to fail with all that 'nocturnal activity' of yours. There are no suspender-wearing perverts lurking in the Jungle, least of all Jaws. "Who was that guy?" is just one of the endearing one-liners Natalya keeps on standby for when she's just shot someone.

Of course I'm married - pay attention, you spiv. In fact, my brood of hyperactive muscle-headed children are all set to dominate the cast list of
Killer Instinct 7 in a few years' time. Honest.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

Congratulations on a truly superb game! My fiance and I are trying to complete BK, and we have come across an impasse: we could only find 97 notes in Click Clock Wood. We've searched high and low on the Net and not many strategies seem to cover notes. There must be 3 notes hidden somewhere in CCW, but where? We've even run circles in the tall grass in Summer looking for them. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you again for such a remarkable game.
Eric Shamash & Victoria
Uncle Tusk replies:
According to the Rare testers, some three-note hotspots are a) the walkways leading out from the tree just above ground level, and b) the bear-eating plants in Autumn (which you'll need gold feathers to safely reach). If you've already been there and done both of those, you're obviously just a pair of gibbons who need a good kicking.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

I really really love Goldeneye for N64 but I just cannot beat the Control Room on 00 Agent no matter what I do. I have literally played it over 200 times (I am seriously not joking) and I cannot beat it. I have beaten all the other levels (besides the one you need to beat all the 00 Agent levels to get) on 00 Agent and they were all easy, even the Aztec temple. Am I going about the level all wrong? Please help me out here.
Khardan - The Prophet of the Rose
Uncle Tusk replies:
According to the designer, there shouldn't be any specific change in the way you run through the level for 00 Agent: before releasing Natalya, take out all the mainframes you can reach (without breaking any of the glass walls, if possible), and also get rid of all the desks except the one Natalya will be using. Once the alarm has been sounded, your best bet is to stand against the wall, facing the screen and Natalya's back, and swing left and right to take out the guards as they flood in. On top of that, perhaps it would benefit you to be less crap.


Where the heck did Bottles learn those moves? And if he knows them, why doesn't he do them himself? He's no Jackie Chan, so why would some ninja master bother teaching him them? Or perhaps the Great Tusk taught him them? Or maybe he's just Yoda dressed in a mole suit? OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Ha ha ha! Have I backed you into a corner? I'd like to see the stupid answer you come up for this one!

Uncle Tusk replies:
He can't do them himself because he's a comedy shortarse, and he probably just read them in the manual anyway. There now - an eminently sensible observation if ever I saw one.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

In the DKC player's guide, under Mine Cart Carnage, although it does confirm that there are no bonus areas, it also says something like "There is also a deep, dark secret hidden in this level, and only the most intrepid explorers will find it." After many headaches I discovered the warp near the beginning of the level; however, there are warps in other levels, too, so why should Mine Cart Carnage have been singled out by the player's guide? I did notice that at some points, if you hit the dangerous boxes and die and your cart falls, you can hear the cart hitting another track, but I haven't been able to get down there without dying. It's been nearly four years - PLEASE, MY DEAR UNCLE TUSK, PUT MY MIND AT EASE!
M. Stephens

Uncle Tusk replies:
DKC's designer claims to have no idea what you're on about, so unless he's still fiercely protecting some hideous secret after all this time or he's simply got a crap memory, you can probably put it down to a strategy guide writer with an overactive imagination. Worry about something worthwhile, man.

Uncle Tusk Sir...?

Maybe it was a blinky Pikachu-induced hallucination, but I heard something about a Killer Instinct TV show, maybe something similiar to the oh-so-cool Donkey Kong TV show (hey, there was a bit about that on the discovery channel!). Is it true? Huh?
Code-Guy Ty

Uncle Tusk replies:
No. Basically. Or at least we've heard nothing, so somebody's in trouble if it is.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

Either I'm stuck or Blast Corps has an error, I cannot get 100% on the buildings in Havoc District, can only get 95% and I'm 99% sure I got everything...

4 lights on top of the bridge

1 ball under the bridge

Crates near bridge

5 balls out in the water

Light house

Main buildings on land

One red statue next to main building

What else is there? I've searched the entire map many times...searched the web for hints and still don't see anything I've missed?? Only objects left I see are the boat, truck, glass/invisible building in the water, trees and I can't damage them...

Uncle Tusk replies:
The designer says he wishes he'd thought of putting in loads of invisible buildings, but he didn't, so that's not it. The trees and the Blast Corps truck can't be destroyed either, so what does that leave? A load of unused missiles, probably. Go blow some holes in the ship, idiot child.

Tusk you big slab of beef, you,

What's with the grates in the floor on your stage, is it drainage for your extra chunky poo?

Who do you prefer, Kim Wu (with her magical pantie flashing properties), Maya (with her amusingly shaped funbags), Orchid (with her funky bumcakes), or, Gargos if you're that way inclined?


On a more serious note, Perfect Dark and Jet Force Gemini look pretty darn tootin'.

Keep up the gravy work.
Hex, Sax & Metz.
P.S. Is Kazooie doing anything this Friday? CHHHEEEEP BABY!

Uncle Tusk replies:
The grates are vital to my hidden third finishing move which you've obviously failed to find, the only amusing thing about Maya's 'funbags' is that you'll never get anywhere near them, and I'm afraid Kazooie's coming round to our place for a sophisticated cocktail party (without that ridiculous bear friend of hers) this Friday. Bad luck.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

I was just playing Banjo-Kazooie (the best game ever), and I was wondering if I would be a washing machine at the ending if I beat Gruntilda as a washing machine. So, I got the code from Bottles, turned myself into a washing machine, and went on up to fight Gruntilda. Only thing is, when I stepped on the pad to go to Grunty's Furnace Fun, I turned back into Banjo. Is this a glitch? Why can't I fight her as a washing machine? Please answer my cry for help. Thank you for your time.

Uncle Tusk replies:
You can't fight Gruntilda as a washing machine because, frankly, that would be stupid. Anyway, she's probably set up some counterspell to prevent Mumbo's magic being carried that far into her Lair, or something. Either that or the game would have blown up if we'd left it in.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

Has GoldenEye sold more than 3 million units yet? Are you going to make a special appearance in Perfect Dark? I'd take a four-foot sword and fireballs over a gun any day! Unless of course I was John Woo or Chow Yun Fat. Will they be in Perfect Dark? They're even cooler than you are! Err..don't feel bad. At least you have Maya...
Jeremy Townsend

Uncle Tusk replies:
GoldenEye has shipped around 4 and a half million last we heard, so unless some fruitcake somewhere is holding several warehouses full of cartridges to ransom, it probably has sold over 3 million, yes. I can't even audition for PD because Maya doesn't let me anywhere near other women. And while you may think Tusk's a stupid name, it's not a patch on Mr. Fat.

Dear Tusk, (Eww I just called a barbarian "dear")

Ach! Du hast deine schone hosen mit schokolade geschmutzt! (Translation: Hey! You have dirtied your nice pants with chocolate!) And now for a few questions.

1. In Banjo-Kazooie where do the snowman get their snowballs from?

2. Where are Banjo's nostrils, his nose just has two small imploded holes?

3. Whose is your nefew?

4. What color is my hair?

Thank you.
Andy Buntua

Uncle Tusk replies:
You see what I have to put up with? Honestly.

1. Is this a really poor joke?

2. Kazooie looks after them for him when he's not using them.

3. Funnily enough, he's mine.

4. Arterial red, in the near future. Heh.

Dear Uncle Tusk,

I have tried to beat the Train stage on 00 Agent numerous times, but it seems to me that it is almost impossible to crack Boris's password, and with only 5 seconds left, get out of the train without Natalya getting blown up by the explosion. May I have a little insight on this? Possibly a hint or tip?
Ashley Renner

Uncle Tusk replies:
Ah yes, the Train. Natalya in Dunce Mode yet again. To give her the extra time she needs on 00 Agent, you'll need to stall Trevelyan's escape by landing a hit or two on Xenia before the shutter comes down. Otherwise you'll fry. Women, eh? What can you do? (Sound of knives being sharpened in background.)