Grab a copy of the podcast here and jump right in! Get it? Jump? Mario? Anyway, more after the jump – all right! Sorry!
This podcast contains adult language and spoilers for Banjo-Kazooie, Banjo-Tooie, Super Mario 64, Game of Thrones season 3 and A Storm of Swords, Fables, and the original Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney.
01:08 – Radical Statement!
02:46 – It’s called the Talon Trot. Kazooie seems to carry most of the weight on this quest, often literally. What does Banjo contribute? Simple. Kazooie doesn’t care.
03:45 – Somebody had to manage the damn thing.
05:18 – This is the impressively researched video I mentioned.
05:36 – In fairness, I’ll include a link to the Mass Effect: Deception google doc, which is my particular brand of crazy.
06:15 – Banjo-Kazooie’s music was composed by Grant Kirkhope.
9:29 – Mario is in fact from New York City, specifically Brooklyn.
12:16 – If you haven’t heard of Diddy Kong Racing, it was an early N64 kart racer that served both as a follow-up to the legendary Mario Kart 64 and as a sort of trailer for a bunch of characters and franchises Nintendo planned to launch in the near future. While Donkey Kong and Conker eventually got their games, others did not. (Timber the Tiger was not actually planned for a stand-alone game, but was intended to be the main character early in the development of Diddy Kong Racing.)
13:25 – The short answer is that Rare apparently always owned its own characters – Banjo and Conker. Nintendo only held onto the franchises that had always been part of its stable, namely Donkey Kong and Star Fox.
13:43 – The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air is PK’s all-time favorite show.
14:06 – In this fascinating interview, Shigeru Miyamoto explains that a certain slipperiness has always been part of Mario’s movement – it’s a deliberate choice to give the character a sense of weight and reality.
15:24 – He does this all the time while I’m talking. He says it helps him think about why what I said was so stupid. He’s doing this with his mouth, for the record.
19:02 – That was a reference to Disney’s Mulan.
19:23 – If you go into the sewer, the BGM is played in farts.
20:08 – I checked. It’s Slayer.
22:21 – And kiss with dry lips when we say goooooodniiiiiiight!
26:10 – In the words of the great Will Smith, “Don’t start nothin’, won’t be nothin’.”
28:28 – The two snow levels in Super Mario 64 are “Cool, Cool Mountain” and “Snowman’s Land.”
29:36 – Endless Waltz came out in Japan in 1997.
30:29 – That’s Tywin Lannister, son!
30:45 – Actually, there was a submarine enclosure level in Mario 64 – “Dire Dire Docks.”
33:55 – My favorite unreplayable sequence in Banjo-Kazooie was the board game right before the final boss. Incidentally, once you find all 120 Stars in Mario 64, you can launch yourself to the top of the castle where Yoshi will give you 30 or 100 free lives – a little convenience for replayability.
34:38 – Arguably, Banjo-Kazooie with its huge levels stuffed with things to do and not taking you out of the level is like a precursor to big open-world games like Assassin’s Creed, creating a similar feeling of clearing out a space of objectives.
36:25 – Here we embark on a fairly long conversation about dicks.
37:02 – Please don’t.
38:40 – And then we did!
39:43 – Our Legacy of Kain episode. Don’t you love those old Marvel edits?
40:20 – I stand corrected.
41:44 – What kind of thing can you find in Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts?
48:01 – We had been reading a lot of Fables. Spoiler warning!
48:20 – One of the penguins from Mario 64 can be seen in Mario Kart 64, and Big Bully reappears in Mario Kart DS as a boss in Mission Mode. Mario 64’s first boss, King Bob-Omb, has made many subsequent appearances (ignoring his apparent death in Mario 64, as is typical for Nintendo villains), including most Mario Party games and Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. His nemeses, the evil, manipulative Bob-Omb Buddies, return in Super Mario Galaxy 2.
51:42 – The piano jump scare.
53:46 – Gruntilda was apparently always ugly, as her sister’s dialogue reveals a number of unpleasant schoolyard nicknames. Mumbo was apparently one of her instructors in magic, a relationship which ended poorly with the aforementioned skull-face transformation.
55:58 – In the first Ace Attorney, a case revolves around Will Power and Jack Hammer, two stars of a kid’s TV show who are suspects in a murder committed by a villain wearing Power’s ridiculous sentai costume. It turns out that Hammer, who Power always thought of as a close colleague and friend, wore the costume to frame Power for the murder, jealous that Power got to play the hero. In a way, Ace Attorney’s humorous side cases are often the darkest cases, because the light-hearted subject matter always gives way to bitterness and secret hatreds.
57:45 – Final Exam Boss.
01:11:20 – Soupy Sales was a comedian who was very successful as a children’s TV host in the 60s. In 1965, on his New Year’s Day show, he asked children to send him “those funny green pieces of paper with pictures of U.S. Presidents on them” from their parents’ bedrooms. He was suspended for two weeks, which made him even more popular.
01:11:38 – We didn’t actually talk about the very realistic feel of the spaces in Dark Forces in our Star Wars games episode, which is one of that game’s best features.
01:11:48 – Our Mass Effect 3 episode.
01:14:22 – Parkour can apparently be used as a verb, though freerun is a more common usage.
01:16:56 – One of my favorite parts in Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time is the moment where the Prince and Farah enter an elevator – and then begin talking about this legendary conveyance found only here, in the most ingeniously engineered palace in the world.
01:18:24 – Banjo-Kazooie did have skyboxes, for example, a darkened night sky outside Mad Monster Mansion or a desert skyline filled with pyramids in Gobi’s Valley. More discussion – and images – of the Mario 64 skyboxes can be found here.
And here is a good example of the impossible architecture in Diablo II’s Arcane Sanctuary.
01:20:30 – If, for reasons passing understanding, you wanted to know more about Triclops, look no further. I was incorrect in referring to him as Emperor; it was the slavelord Trioculus posing as Palpatine’s actual three-eyed son who was briefly Emperor.