Yooka is one of two main protagonists of the game Yooka-Laylee and Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair. He appears as a playable character alongside Laylee in Brief Battles, and Brawlout as well as a findable character in Tracky Train. He is a green chameleon who carries his bat friend, Laylee on his head.

Name Origin[edit | edit source]

The name Yooka is a two-name pun with Laylee, as both words are being used to form the musical string instrument known as the ukulele (although it is more of a mis-pronunciation, as ukulele is a Hawaiian word and is meant to be pronounced "ooh-kooh-leh-leh" literally meaning "jumping fleas").

According to Steve Mayles, Yooka's name has a second meaning. Yooka's name was based off of the Hawaiian word "uku", which means "small brained person" or simply flea.[1]

Ironically, the name "Yooka" is a homophone with a real life male human name: Luca.

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Protagonist Yooka is described as "a green bloke with no pants." The character is a lime-green colored, male chameleon. He is further described as having eyes that are blue in color, and these are surrounded in arched, dark-green markings. He also has a long curled tail, pronged casque upon his head, and even scarlet-red markings and spikes upon his back, eyelids, hands, toes, and tail. He has a round yellow patch upon his torso.

Personality[edit | edit source]

Yooka is the easy-going, adventure-craving half of the buddy-duo.[2] Always having a calm attitude and keeping Laylee at bay, he is an affable, intelligent and relaxed chameleon.

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Abilities only used by Yooka[edit | edit source]

  • Slurp Shot - Yooka shoots out his tongue to eat objects like berries and butterflies and is used for other abilities.
  • Tail Twirl - An attack that can be used while moving, hitting any nearby enemy.
  • Double Jump - After jumping, Yooka can jump one more time.
  • Slurp State - Yooka gains an elemental property when licking a certain object
  • Lizard Leap - Yooka uses his tail to give an extra jump boost.
  • Lizard Lash - Yooka grabs onto an object by using lick, and his tongue pulls him forward towards the object.
  • Buddy Bubble- A bubble made of flatulence used underwater that allows the duo to breathe, and use their normal abilities underwater.

Abilities shared with Laylee[edit | edit source]

  • Air Attack - An aerial attack that deals one damage to any enemy it contacts.
  • Flappy Flight - Allows the duo to fly for a certain amount of time.
  • Buddy Slam - Yooka jumps and Laylee hits Yooka downward in mid-air to hit the ground hard.
  • Glide - Slows down the falling speed of the duo.
  • Camo Cloak - The duo becomes light-refractive. While being light-refractive, the duo will be able to evade detection from Corplet Security and Security Cameras, and the duo will also be able to refract light to activate light-activated switches.
  • Reptile Roll - Laylee uses Yooka as a wheel to go up steep hills and travel fast.

Quotes[edit | edit source]

Development[edit | edit source]

Steve Mayles originally designed a tiger, but this was changed to make him appear more like an underdog, as tigers are usually seen as strong creatures. Steve Mayles then went with a frog, but decided to scrap that idea. At one point, Playtonic Games even experimented with insects as well.[3] A friend of Steve Mayles told Steve to check out the game Chameleon Twist 2 on the Nintendo 64, and Steve Mayles got the idea of a Chameleon as the main character.[4]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Artwork[edit | edit source]

Screenshots[edit | edit source]

Animated[edit | edit source]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Yooka was mostly inspired by Banjo from the Banjo-Kazooie series.
  • The internal names for "Yooka" and "Laylee" in various files are "Cam" (likely short for Chameleon or camera) and "Batty" respectively.
  • During the official reveal of the game before the Yooka-Laylee Kickstarter, many fans mistook Yooka as a female.
  • Despite clearly being a chameleon, Yooka is often stated to be an unidentified reptilian species.
  • While intentional or not, Yooka has two tongues- one that is in his mouth normally on the character model and a second that sticks out to eat butterflies or berries. They can often be seen at the same time, if the player looks closely.
    • Presumably in an attempt to avoid this appearance of two tongues, the tongue in Yooka's mouth no longer appears on the model, though curiously it does return in specific areas.

References[edit | edit source]

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