Banjo-Kazooie is a platform video game developed and published by Rare for the Nintendo 64 video game console. It was first released on June 30, 1998 in North America and on July 17, 1998 in Europe, and later re-released as an Xbox Live Arcade game for the Xbox 360 on December 3, 2008. The game was under development for more than two and a half years and was originally intended to be an adventure game for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. It is the first installment in the Banjo Kazooie series, and chronicles the titular characters' encounter with series antagonist Gruntilda. The game's story focuses on Banjo and Kazooie's efforts to stop Gruntilda's plans to switch her beauty with Banjo's sister Tooty.
The gameplay is very similar to that of Super Mario 64, even though Banjo-Kazooie has less emphasis on the platforming and more on exploration. Banjo-Kazooie was a critical and commercial success, selling nearly two million copies in the United States and receiving aggregated scores of 92% and 93% from Metacritic and GameRankings respectively. The game was praised for its detailed graphics, immersive sound, and intricate level design. In 1999, it received two awards from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences: "Console Action Game of the Year" and "Outstanding Achievement in Art/Graphics". The critical and commercial success of Banjo-Kazooie led to the release of a sequel, Banjo-Tooie, which was also developed by Rare for the Nintendo 64.