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Twelve Tales: Conker 64
Preview By: Shane Sacobie
Developer:   Rare
Publisher:   Rare
Genre:   Platformer
Est. Release Date:   Cancelled

*Note: As you probably know, Rare has since transformed this game into the immature Conker's Bad Fur Day.

Rare's at it again. With the follow-up to the ever-so-cute Banjo-Kazooie, it looks like this one's another surefire hit. Don't expect any blood or gore, though. This one's about as cute as any game in the history of video games. From what I've seen, it looks like a storybook tale. The opening screens depict a hand turning pages between characters where the player chooses whether to start a new game or load a saved one.

Featured in this game are two cutesy animals -- Conker the squirrel and his girlfriend (I assume) Berri the chipmunk. You can play as either one. Unfortunately, this will not be a 2-player game as I had once anticipated. Instead, one player has the opportunity to explore the world as either character he/she chooses. Another animal, Conker's mentor, appears to be involved in the game (though not in playable form).

Detail in this game will be unlike any game before and really shows off the power of the N64. The characters have facial expressions, and they'll get angry at you if you don't do the right thing. Everything in the game is animated. Sound effects will be realistic to the max.

The worlds will be quite varied. Conker can even go underground. Though this looks like a Mario clone, it will allow the player to have many new abilities. The addition of the extra character should make for the ultimate in replay value.

One of the key things in this title will be the interaction that is possible with the world around the stars of the game. They will examine everything and can even shake the trees. True 3D and free-roaming, this one will be as realistic as possible.

As announced at E3, Rare is taking a big step with this one. It is the first third party game from them. In other words, it's the first game they'll be releasing without the aid of Nintendo, as they take the big step toward publishing this as their first game. It's a change for them, but they've been one of the major players in the industry ever since the release of Donkey Kong Country for the Super NES. They took that system to new levels, and it looks like lightning will strike twice.

There are tons of unique items (more than 100). How's that for variety? Your weapon? A slingshot that Conker uses to shoot nuts at the bad guys. It looks like the characters may also possess hats (a la Mario).

Rare seems to have another winner on their hands. Can anyone top Miyamoto's work? It looks like Rare can. Though a little on the cute side (okay, a lot), the interaction and variety available will make this one of the greatest games of all time.
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