Of the many stretch goals — of which were easily met — in the original Kickstarter to Playtonic’s Yooka-Laylee project, one of the more note-worthy additions the studio promised was what was originally referred to as an “N64 shader” that aimed to replicate the aesthetic and visual quality of old N64 platformers, referring back to games like Banjo-Kazooie and Conker’s Bad Fur Day. The addition would, eventually, make its way into the game in the form of a tonic that players could equip at any time throughout their adventures, but up until this point — and more than a year since the game’s actual release — we hadn’t seen anything of how the game would look when this filter was equipped.
Fortunately, Playtonic have dished out a small teaser which sees the 64-Bit tonic enabled and, as several users have already noted, while there’s certainly an effort to downgrade the visual quality and overall performance to replicate the technology at the time of the N64’s relevance, needless to say it hasn’t quite matched the expectations many have set. Rather than a full “remake” of the game per se — whereby, for example, character models are replaced by polygonal models — it would appear that the game applies a string of filters on top as well as removing what would be considered standard features in today’s video games.
Not that the teaser doesn’t cover a slew of N64-styled normalities, including the presence of scan-lines, aliasing, even a lower resolution and deliberate reduction in frame-rate. The style of box-art for N64 is even referenced. But it’s definitely not the overhaul and make-over fans were led to believe was existent. No date was given as to when the update would be available but Playtonic have stated that it will be free to all users across PS4, Xbox One, Switch & PC. Check out the upcoming 64-Bit mode below.