Conker (series)

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Conker
ConkerLogo.PNG
Genres Platform, Action/Adventure,Third-person shooter, Beat 'em up
Developers Rare
Publishers Nintendo (1999)
THQ (2001)
Microsoft Studios (2005-present)
Creators Chris Seavor
Platforms Game Boy Color, Nintendo 64, Xbox, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, Microsoft HoloLens
Platform of origin Game Boy Color
First release Conker's Pocket Tales
8 June 1999
Latest release Conker's Big Reunion
1 April 2015

Conker is a series of platform video games created by Rare. It chronicles the events of Conker the Squirrel, a fictional red squirrel that made his debut as a playable character in Diddy Kong Racing. Although the first game in the series was family friendly and geared towards children, the series is noted for its later games and their mature content, which includes strong bloody graphic violence, sexual innuendo, strong language, toilet humor, and several film parodies.

Titles[edit]

Development[edit]

Conker was introduced to the world for the first time at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in 1997. His game Conker's Quest was presented by Rare as another 3D platformer aimed at a young audience for the Nintendo 64.[1] Later the same year, this fact was confirmed with Conker's inclusion in Diddy Kong Racing for the Nintendo 64, thus promoting his future games.[2] In the spring of 1998, Conker's Quest was renamed Twelve Tales: Conker 64.[3] In 1999, Conker made his first solo debut in Conker's Pocket Tales for the Game Boy Color.

Before its release, the Nintendo 64 game was deemed too similar to Banjo-Kazooie, another platformer from Rare, and its release date was pushed back almost a year while it underwent a complete transformation, eventually being released in 2001 as Conker's Bad Fur Day.[3][4] The redesigned game was geared towards a mature audience and featured sexual content, foul language, drug and alcohol usage, and excessive violence.[5] According to Rare co-founder Chris Stamper, "When people grow up on games, they don't stop playing. There aren't games for people who grew up on the early systems", explaining the change.[6] The game suffered from relatively poor sales,[7] but received a cult following with its unique brand of humor.

After the release of Conker's Bad Fur Day, Rare began development of a new Conker game referred to as Conker's Other Bad Day.[8][9] Designer Chris Seavor said that it was to be a direct sequel dealing with "Conker's somewhat unsuccessful tenure as King. He spends all the treasury money on beer, parties and hookers. Thrown into prison, Conker is faced with the prospect of execution and the game starts with his escape, ball and chain attached, from the Castles highest tower."[8] In 2002, Microsoft purchased Rare from Nintendo, so instead of finishing and releasing the game, Rare remade Conker's Bad Fur Day for the Xbox in 2005, renaming it Conker: Live & Reloaded. It features improved graphics and minor alterations to gameplay. Also included was a new multiplayer adaptation that was available for use over Xbox Live.[10] After Live & Reloaded, Rare started development on Conker: Gettin' Medieval, an online multiplayer third-person shooter game, but it was ultimately cancelled.[11]

At E3 2014, Conker was announced as a character in Project Spark.[12] In 2015, it was announced that Conker will return in a new episodic campaign for Project Spark. The campaign, titled Conker's Big Reunion, is set ten years after the events of Bad Fur Day and Seavor reprises his voice role.[13] The first episode was released on 23 April 2015 for Project Spark. In 2015, Conker's Bad Fur Day was included in the Rare Replay video game compilation for Xbox One.[14]

In 2016, Microsoft announced Young Conker as the next instalment into the series released exclusively for the Microsoft Hololens. The trailer was released in February. By the trailers release it received extremely negative reviews from the public. Many complaining how it lacked the humour and overall style of its three predecessors. The trailer received over 24,000 dislikes against just over 1,000 likes. A petition has been created to cancel the games release. Some video game critics and general YouTube reactors have opted to boycotting the game.[15]

Characters[edit]

  • Conker the Squirrel is the main protagonist of the Conker series. In the newer games, Conker is an ill-tempered, greedy, heavy drinking, pessimistic, and cynical red squirrel. Conker, though highly materialistic and never afraid to insult, always approaches new characters with a positive outlook. Conker's adventures occur because he gets drunk and wanders in the opposite direction to his home. In the Xbox Live Arcade version of Banjo-Kazooie, his picture is seen in the Rusty Bucket Bay level where Berri's beta old appearance originally was in the Nintendo 64 version. In Conker's Pocket Tales, he has to rescue his girlfriend, Berri, from the Evil Acorn; the same version of Conker appears in Diddy Kong Racing, where he is a playable character and that game marks his first appearance. He is voiced by Chris Seavor.
  • Berri is Conker's girlfriend, she began as an orange/brown-furred chipmunk the same approximate size as Conker in Conker's Pocket Tales but since Conker's Bad Fur Day she is thin and curvaceous, grey-furred, and more than twice Conker's height. Conker and Berri form a close relationship, though she is frustrated by his regular drinking. Berri gets abducted by a rock man to dance at a nightclub. Conker saves her, but the Bouncer takes him to the mafia boss Don Weaso, who later murders her at the orders of the Panther King. Berri is a stereotypical valley girl with entirely pink possessions and a naive but no-nonsense attitude. She (or at least, a beta version of her from Conker's Twelve Tales) makes a minor cameo in Banjo-Kazooie; a bunk bed in a cabin in Rusty Bucket Bay has a poster of her hanging above it. Berri is voiced by Louise Ridgeway.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ IGN Staff (21 June 1997). "E3: First Impressions of Conker's Quest". IGN. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  2. ^ IGN Staff (27 August 1997). "Diddy Kong Racing Unveiled". IGN. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  3. ^ a b IGN Staff (13 January 2000). "Conker Has a Bad Day". IGN. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  4. ^ IGN Staff (21 January 1997). "More Proof that Conker is Insane". IGN. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  5. ^ IGN Staff (2 January 2001). "Happy New Year, Love Conker". IGN. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  6. ^ IGN Staff (5 June 2000). "Against the Big N's M". IGN. Retrieved 17 April 2011. 
  7. ^ Rus McLaughlin (28 July 2008). "IGN Presents the History of Rare (Page 6)". IGN. Retrieved 14 March 2011. 
  8. ^ a b Iker Pérez (16 August 2008). "Conker Commands and Conquers". MundoRare. Archived from the original on 5 January 2010. Retrieved 4 February 2010. 
  9. ^ Ryan Firchau. "Further Information". Ryan Firchau website. Archived from the original on 5 March 2008. Retrieved 5 March 2008. 
  10. ^ Hilary Goldstein (12 May 2004). "E3 2004: Conker Live and Reloaded Hands-On". IGN. Retrieved 14 March 2011. 
  11. ^ Matulef, Jeffrey (29 September 2015). "Rare reflects on its lost Conker game, Gettin' Medieval". Eurogamer. Gamer Network. Retrieved 29 September 2015. 
  12. ^ Sliva, Marty (9 June 2014). "Conker coming to Project Spark". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved 10 June 2014. 
  13. ^ Lucy O'Brien (19 March 2015). "New Conker Game Coming to Project Spark April 23". IGN. Archived from the original on 19 March 2015. Retrieved 19 March 2015. 
  14. ^ Michael McWhertor (15 June 2015). "Rare Replay for Xbox One includes 30 Rare games for $30 (update)". Polygon. Archived from the original on 28 June 2015. Retrieved 28 June 2015. 
  15. ^ Julian Benson (2016-02-29). "HoloLens Conker Game Looks Awful, Just Awful". Kotaku. Archived from the original on 2016-03-01. Retrieved 2016-03-01.