Publisher: Team 17
Platforms: XBO, PS4, NS, PC
Version Played: PC
Donkey Kong Country and Banjo-Kazooie are some of my favourite Rare games. I remember playing BK on N64 and dreaming of a DKC style 2D platformer starring the bird and bear duo. That never happened, though. And it's not going to happen with the current Rare either. Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair comes pretty close, though.
Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair is 40 levels of old-school 2D platforming action, plus the Impossible Lair itself, which is like 4 levels in one. It's actually 20 levels, but each one has 2 very different versions, so it's 40 levels. For comparison, the first DKC game on SNES had 40 levels too. YLATIL doesn't have any boss battles besides Capital B, who you only fight in the Impossible Lair, but its levels are much bigger than DKC's. There's a lot to do in the overworld in between levels too. This isn't as big as the first Yooka-Laylee, but it's still a pretty big game.
I think this game looks really nice. The models are pretty low poly and the textures are not super detailed, but everything is so small and you're running around so fast, you don't really notice while playing. The lighting is also really well done, so it kind of covers up any imperfections. The game just has that kind of colorful Rare box art CG kind of look to it and I love it. It also has an uncapped framerate on PC, if you care about that sort of thing, which I do.