|“||I can't believe that furry pair,
Got right up here, it's so unfair!
But now the stupid bear must fight,
This battle tests your skill and might!
|~ Gruntilda before the final battle in Banjo-Kazooie.|
Gruntilda Winkybunion, also more commonly known as Grunty for short or better known by her first name Gruntilda, is an evil witch and the main antagonist of the Banjo-Kazooie series. She has appeared in every game in the series yet, causing trouble for her archenemies, Banjo and Kazooie. She is one of four sisters, her other sisters are Brentilda, Mingella, and Blobbelda.
She was voiced by Chris Seavor.
In Banjo-Kazooie, Gruntilda resembles a stereotypical wicked witch seen in various different media, most noticeably The Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz. She has black hair with no visible ears, a long nose and chin that are both crooked and pointy, large green eyes that are framed with black eyelashes, four prominent front teeth and green skin covered in warts. Grunty is also old and overweight, but still considered herself the prettiest in the land before her cauldron Dingpot told her otherwise. The witch's attire consists of a black gown with long sleeves, a pointy black witch's hat, a lengthy purple scarf wrapped around under her neck, long purple socks and black round shoes with small red straps.
During the Game Over sequence for Banjo-Kazooie, Gruntilda succeeds in stealing Tooty's beauty, which alters her appearance. She is young and slim, with smooth green skin. The more exaggerated features of her face are gone and her voice (aside from her laugher) becomes breathy and lustful. Her clothes consist of a short black dress with no hat and black high-heels.
In Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge, Gruntilda transfers her spirit into a mechanical version of herself called "Mecha-Grunty". It is a black robotic suit with glowing green eyes and a drill on its head that resembles Grunty's hat. Metal plates and pipes cover Mecha-Grunty, with one plate labelled "Hag 1" on its waist just below a pair of buttons and a gauge. A round hatch can also be found on the back of the suit, along with two exhaust pipes attached to a cylinder tank.
In Banjo-Tooie, Gruntilda's body had decayed to a skeleton, and portions of her clothing had also withered away. Her green skin is gone, exposing her bones. However, she somehow retained her hair, eyes and nose. The color of her clothes had changed from black to a deep blue and her gown has opened up a bit, revealing a part of her rib cage. Her pointy witch's hat now droops to one side plus the length of her sleeves and purple scarf had been greatly reduced due to deterioration.
In Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts, Gruntilda is now a bony head inside an animatronic body. Her skull has deep indentations that run around the sides of her head and down to her nose. Some of her hair also seems to be missing. Grunty's mechanical body looks similar to her original except for a large jar where her head is kept. The jar sits between its shoulders and has a metal lid fashioned to look like a witch's hat. Her scarf wraps around the bottom of the jar while the rest of her black clothing is covered by the purple stitches. Grunty's body also has a tube protruding from it's back, green synthetic skin, and she wears a pair of pointy black shoes.
Like the rest of the characters in the series, Gruntilda Winkybunion has a very comical personality and often breaks the fourth wall. While possessing high intelligence and a sarcastic wit, Gruntilda is very arrogant, egotistical, and overconfident, never expecting Banjo and Kazooie to overcome all of the trials and challenges placed before them. However, even though she is extremely funny and whimsical, she is nonetheless very evil, sinister, and manipulative, so she has never shown any form of kindness or concern for anybody or anything; not even her own sisters. She is very power-hungry, mischievous, and sadistic, hurting others for simply having a sympathetic, carefree, and kind nature. Aside from the plan she had to take Tooty's beauty away in the first game, her malevolent nature is also shown with how she abuses her minions throughout the game and her abductions of the Jinjos. In the first game, Gruntilda had a fairly typical witch personality with her goal of being the best looking and trying to stop Banjo and Kazooie from interfering with her evil plans. She is also shown to be very responsible for the numerous misfortunes of the countless lands she had seized control of and had spread much chaos and suffering with her army of monsters. Gruntilda's habit of rhyming was intentionally done to annoy the player, something that the second game points out. When she becomes a pretty and thin witch after stealing Tooty's beauty and turning her into a monster in the Game Over segment, Gruntilda becomes more confident, happy and proud, eager to show off her newfound beauty to the world.
In Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge, her rise to power prior to Banjo-Kazooie is explained and she is shown to display a considerable more villainous and intelligent demeanor. Her plans include abducting Kazooie and going back in time to alter history by erasing her previous defeat. She also asserts her dominance of Isle o' Hags by abducting the Jinjos, seizing control of their home to construct her lair, enslaving the Breegulls of Breegull Beach, and stealing the Jiggies from Master Jiggywiggy to exert her control over the lands she took over. She also plotted to round up all bears and birds and eradicate them entirely to insure Banjo and Kazooie never exist so they won’t be around to stop her plans and her authority would remain unopposed. Gruntilda's plans in this game took a much more strategic approach, as her operations were laid out more carefully, and she craved to have pure power and control over Isle o' Hags, and eventually the world, in addition to getting her revenge against Banjo and Kazooie.
During the second game, Gruntilda is overall much more wicked and dangerous, though she is still just as entertaining. She is forced to stop rhyming (because her sisters won't help her get her body back if she doesn't stop), and actually murders several characters, including an entire family of Jinjos and her own two sisters. Her aim is also more fiendish, in that she wanted to use B.O.B. to suck the life from all of Isle O' Hags to restore her body. Finally, she has no problems with crushing her sisters, Mingella and Blobbelda, when they lost at her Tower of Tragedy game. Due to Banjo and Kazooie foiling her plans and burying her under a rock, she holds a strong grudge against them. Despite that, she takes them just as lightly as she did in the first game, leading to yet another defeat.
In Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts, she displays a high level of intelligence as she built the Gruntbots who assist her and the vehicles she uses. Unlike previous games, Gruntilda does not value upgrading her personal appearance, but to have Spiral Mountain once again in her grasp and be its oppressive ruler.
However, as evil as she is, she does hold a more honorable side. After defeating her game show in the first game, instead of running off with Tooty, she holds her promise to release her. And she willingly uses slow attacks in the final battle of the second game if you answer her questions correctly.
Powers and Abilities
Gruntilda is a very powerful witch, endowed with various magical powers, such as concealing herself in an almost impenetrable forcefield, casting illusions, and many destructive spells like fireballs, homing energy projectiles, or even spells capable of destroying whole buildings.
Gruntilda proves immortal and impossible to kill. She has survived multiple sharp blows by her enemies, falling stories into the ground, left buried under a rock for two years, and having her skeletal body completely destroyed, reducing her to a head.
Gruntilda is also an extremely intelligent, capable of designing, building, and controlling technology efficiently. Although she does seem to need some help in this field at times, whether it comes from Mingella and Bloddelda explaining their B.O.B. machine, Klungo building contraptions and creating monsters on her behalf, or preferring the use of a manual when operating her Hag 1 digger.
As Mecha-Grunty, she is capable of limited flight and has great strength, since she often tries to ram or stomp on Banjo.
|“||Come to me my little pretty. You'll soon be ugly, what a pity.||„|
|~ Gruntilda kidnapping Tooty.|
In the first game, Gruntilda played the the role of the stereotypical "evil witch". She spoke only in rhymes and was known for being extremely vain, which is odd considering how ugly she appears. She had a bad habit of picking her nose, as seen in the Banjo-Kazooie intro cutscene. Like most witches, she used a broomstick for transportation. When her cauldron Dingpot revealed that Tooty, Banjo's sister, was the "prettiest and fairest in the land", Gruntilda became infuriated and kidnapped Tooty. She selfishly plotted to use a "Beauty Transfer Machine" to drain Tooty's youth and beauty and transfer it to her own ugly self, resulting in Gruntilda turning into a pretty and thin which and Tooty turning into an ugly and fat green bear. Banjo and his pal Kazooie chased the witch through her massive lair, where she had created several worlds filled with her minions and various challenges to stop the duo. Throughout the game, Gruntilda spent most of her time saying annoying rhyming taunts and various insults in an attempt to keep the pair away. However, with the help from various sources, including her nicer sister Brentilda who told Banjo and Kazooie interesting secrets regarding Gruntilda, the bear and bird duo were able to complete the worlds and reach Grunty's last challenge before rescuing Tooty: a twisted game show called Grunty's Furnace Fun. After the duo won the game show, Gruntilda ran away and Banjo and Kazooie rescued Tooty. Later, the bear and bird journeyed to the roof of Gruntilda's Lair and faced off in a battle with Grunty.
Despite her comical nature, Gruntilda proved herself to be Banjo and Kazooie's strongest enemy when they first battled each other, with her boss fight being long and tough. She spends most of the fight riding her broomstick. During the first phase, she flies down fast and tries to impale Banjo and Kazooie with the teeth on her broom. However, her broom starts to slow down after a few passes, leaving her vulnerable to the Rat-a-Tat Rap. After every successful attack from the player, Gruntilda will attack with an easily dodged fireball.
After taking enough damage, she starts to hover in place and throw fireballs. In a rare moment, she displays some intelligence when doing this, because if the player tries to run away from the fireballs before she fires, Gruntilda will throw them into the player's path. After throwing four fireballs, she will take a short pause, leaving her vulnerable to Eggs.
After repeating this process four times, Gruntilda flies high into the air to avoid being shot at, but fortunately Bottles comes to the duo's aid and creates a Flight Pad for them to use. Banjo and Kazooie can hit Gruntilda at any time with the Beak Bomb, but it's best to attack her when she's not moving. Try not to attack her from above, otherwise the player risks falling off the tower to their doom.
After taking another four hits, Gruntilda will create a force field around herself that Banjo and Kazooie cannot break through. At this point the Jinjos realize the two of them need their help and intervene by creating four statues around the area. After a number of eggs are shot into the statues, a Jinjo will fly into the air like a missile and break through Gruntilda's barrier. The witch, however, does not remain idle during this time and will continue to attack the pair with fireballs. Unfortunately, Banjo and Kazooie cannot take cover behind the Jinjo statues as Gruntilda's attacks fly through them.
After all four Jinjo ram into the witch, Gruntilda's broomstick will break and she will fall to the edge of the tower. She is still standing, however, and her force field still renders her immune to any of Banjo and Kazooie's attacks. At this point a larger statue containing The Mighty Jinjonator appears. This statue has four holes that the player must shoot eggs into. Like the smaller Jinjo statues, the statue provides no cover and Gruntilda's attacks will still pass through it. She is quite possibly at her most dangerous in this phase, partly because she will attack with several consecutive fireballs followed by a homing shot. After each homing shot, she will take a short breather, allowing Banjo and Kazooie to shoot eggs into the holes. Once the Mighty Jinjonator is activated, he will attack Gruntilda and knock her off the tower.
Gruntilda falls off the tower and crashes into the ground below. Seconds later, a large falling rock lands in the same spot where she crashed, trapping her beneath the surface. Banjo, Kazooie, and Tooty take a vacation to celebrate Grunty's defeat, during which Gruntilda's minion Klungo attempts to move the enormous boulder and save Gruntilda. Before the game ends, Grunty vowed to get her revenge on the pair one day.
Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge
|“||The time has come to end this game,
the future cannot be the same.
To your destruction you both race,
to bear and bird I'll leave no trace!
My victory will be most splendid,
when I rule all, and your life's ended!
Two months after Gruntilda was crushed under a rock, Klungo created a mechanical suit called "Mecha-Grunty" which allowed the witch's spirit to possess it via a spell and live free once more. Desiring revenge, Gruntilda flies to Banjo's House and kidnaps Kazooie before traveling back in time to rewrite history. Banjo followed Mecha-Grunty back in time and managed to rescue Kazooie after defeating the witch at Breegull Beach. The duo continued to encounter Mecha-Grunty many times throughout the game before having a showdown atop her newly constructed lair. During the final battle, the Mecha-Grunty suit is completely destroyed, leaving only Gruntilda's ghost to fight before the spell used to eject it from her original body wore off. Grunty's ghost was forced back into her body in the present (which was still lying underneath the rock), where she laments her defeat and tells Klungo to send a message to her sisters, thus setting up the events of Banjo-Tooie.
|“||I hate bones. A body I need.
Can you help with this little deed?
|~ Gruntilda expressing her disappointment for her current state.|
After two years had passed since her defeat in Banjo-Kazooie, Gruntilda was suddenly freed from her underground prison by the sudden arrival of her sisters, Mingella and Blobbelda. The combined power of their evil spells levitated the rock that trapped Grunty and destroyed it, finally freeing her. However, they discovered that two years of decay had degenerated Grunty's body into a skeleton. Furious at her new bony body, Gruntilda asked her sisters for help in restoring her. "Mingy" and "Blobby" had already planned for such an event, and the three prepared to leave Spiral Mountain. Before they did, when Mumbo had wandered out of the Banjo's house to find the source of the ruckus caused when Mingella and Bloddelda entered with Hag 1, Grunty chased him and tried to kill him. Seeing him enter Banjo's house, she prepared a bigger spell to destroy it, and while Banjo, Kazooie, and Mumbo escaped, Bottles stayed behind assuming Mumbo was lying and trying to win at their poker game, resulting in him being killed by the blast, which also ruined Banjo's house.
The trio of witches then used the Hag 1 digging machine to reach Cauldron Keep on Isle o' Hags, where Gruntilda's sisters forced her to stop rhyming if she wanted to learn more of their plan, as they found it "annoying". Mingella and Blobbelda revealed to her their B.O.B. machine, which was designed to suck the life out of anything captured in its beam; Gruntilda practiced this on King Jingaling, reducing him to a zombie. Pleased with the result, Gruntilda desired to use B.O.B. on the whole island, but is informed it will take time before that can happen, as the machine needs to charge up enough power first. For the rest of the game, Grunty will usually talk to Banjo and Kazooie whenever they enter a mini-game, are performing a side-quest, or exploring areas under her control.
The heroes eventually meet her again in person after reaching Cauldron Keep, where she makes an attempt to destroy the duo with another game show called "Tower of Tragedy". This time Grunty has Banjo and Kazooie compete against her two sisters, and the loser would have a 1-ton weight dropped on top them. But her plan failed, as she ended up killing both her sisters for losing the first two rounds and declares Banjo and Kazooie's victories "invalid due to the faulty scoring equipment" after she loses the final round. Not sure of what to do next, Gruntilda takes Kazooie's advice to "escape in a cowardly fashion like in Banjo-Kazooie", and tells the duo she'll be waiting for them at the top of Cauldron Keep. Banjo and Kazooie eventually confront Gruntilda, who is controlling the monstrous Hag 1 digging machine. But despite having the digger's destructive power on her side, Gruntilda failed to defeat the heroes yet again, and is reduced to nothing more than a talking skull after accidentally dropping one of her most powerful spells. Grunty is last seen being kicked around like a ball by Banjo, Kazooie, and their allies while she swore that she would get her revenge in "Banjo-Threeie".
Gruntilda is also a playable character in the multiplayer games "Targitzan's Temple Shootout", "Ordnance Storage Shootout", and "Clinker's Cavern Shootout". In these games, Gruntilda is the tank character, with her health at sixteen honeycombs. This enables her to endure four Grenade Eggs, but at the cost of being the largest target and moving the slowest.
Banjo-Kazooie Nuts & Bolts
|“||Yes, it's me, you pudgy fool.
I'm back again and ready to rule!
|~ Gruntilda announcing her return to Banjo.|
Grunty continues her role as an antagonist in this game as well, and has gone back to talking in rhymes. She makes her way back to Spiral Mountain, but because she is still a skull it takes her eight years to do so. She finds both Banjo and Kazooie are now overweight and challenges them to another showdown. However, before they are able to duel, a powerful figure called the Lord of Games pauses the battle as it was about to begin, and explains that he wants to end the rivalry between them one and for all. He states they shall fight in true Banjo-Kazooie style, by collecting "random useless objects", but soon grows impatient with them running around and decides to try something different.
He restores Banjo and Kazooie to fighting fit shape and gives them a Magical Wrench, while giving Grunty a robotic replica of her original body (with a jar attached for her head) and a cat named Piddles. The three characters go to Showdown Town, where Gruntilda tries to stop Banjo and Kazooie from earning Jiggies and returning to Spiral Mountain. After that fails, she fights the duo in a final showdown, but is defeated yet again. Banjo and Kazooie try to finish her off, but they're stopped by the Lord Of Games who instead sends Grunty and Piddles to his video game factory, where they will work at as punishment. Grunty is last seen working in the factory with Piddles, where she talks to the player claiming that they have made a great mistake by sending her to work there and that she plots to make her own "devious" game, followed by an evil laugh.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Gruntilda (as she appears in Banjo-Kazooie) appears as a background character on the Spiral Mountain stage. She flies around the stage watching the fighters, occasionally taunting them with a laugh. She also appears as a legendary support spirit, with her ability increasing the player's stats when they are poisoned. Her spirit battle is a stamina battle against King Dedede and three giant Dr. Marios on the Find Mii stage covered in poison. Only Dedede has to be defeated in order to win.
|“||When I'm nice and slim once more,
burgers, fries, and chips galore!
|~ Gruntilda expressing her intentions after stealing Tooty's beauty.|
|“||I can't believe you went down there.
Wash your hands now, filthy bear.
|~ Gruntilda after Banjo and Kazooie emerge from Loggo the toilet.|
|“||Stupid bear and dumb Kazooie,
I'll be back for Banjo-Tooie!
|~ Gruntilda during the end cutscene of Banjo-Kazooie.|
|“||Revenge is mine, I cannot miss!
Let's see that furry fool dodge this!
|~ Gruntilda preparing to destroy Banjo's house in Banjo-Tooie.|
|“||Oh... if I must.||„|
|~ Gruntilda when her sisters force her to stop rhyming.|
|“||While you slept I've become a mechanic,
building my Gruntbots to make you panic!
|~ Gruntilda introduces her Gruntbots to Banjo and Kazooie.|
Note: These songs do not work on Internet Explorer
- Her appearance in Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts bears a resemblance to the Mega Man Zero villain, Dr. Weil.
- Despite being a female, she was voiced by the male voice actor Chris Seavor.
- All of Gruntilda's sisters have appeared in only one game so far: Brentilda has appeared in only Banjo-Kazooie while Mingella and Blobbelda have appeared in only Banjo-Tooie.
- Gruntilda does not rhyme in Banjo-Tooie as a condition to enlisting her sisters' help, even after she kills them in her Tower of Tragedy quiz. She starts the game rhyming until the point where the three witches start to steal King Jingaling's life-force.
- Gruntilda seems very fond of game shows as she hosts three of them at the end of Banjo-Kazooie, Banjo-Tooie and Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge. However, L.O.G. replaces her as the game show host in Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts.
- In "Project Dream", Gruntilda was intended to be a giant instead of an evil witch. (This may be referenced on the box art of Banjo-Kazooie as her size has been increased dramatically from the game itself).
- Gruntilda has been relying more and more on technology and less and less on magic as time went by, as proven in Banjo-Tooie where she needed the B.O.B. machine to suck the life force out of the island and where she used the Hag 1 for most of her battle with Banjo and Kazooie. This is also proven in Nuts & Bolts where she claims to have created the Gruntbot minions on her own and uses vehicles like Banjo and Kazooie to fight them in her challenges. Though she has a robot body, this was provided by L.O.G. so she had a fighting change against Banjo and Kazooie. She also uses a life transfer machine in Banjo-Kazooie and, although built by Klungo, she needs a Mecha-Grunty suit in Banjo-Kazooie: Grunty's Revenge.
- Gruntilda's last magic spell before being knocked over by the Jinjonator was originally supposed to hit Banjo and Kazooie and turn them into a frog, resulting in Mumbo Jumbo trying to restore them to normal. It was cut out of the final version due to time constraints.
- The curse she uses to kill Bottles seems to be similar to the Killing Curse (Avada Kedavra) from the Harry Potter book and film series as Gruntilda's spell seems to be green in color and seems to have instantly killed Bottles. The only difference between the Killing Curse and Gruntilda's curse is the fact that the Killing Curse kills the target immediately after being hit by it and Grunty's curse did not seem to fully kill Bottles until the morning. Also of note, at the time the spell was cast, both spell casters were skeletal.
- She would put on sunglasses in Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts.
- Her appearance is almost identical to that of Witch Hazel from Looney Tunes.
- She is the longest boss fight in Banjo-Kazooie and often considered the hardest one.
- During one of her taunts throughout her lair in the first game, she says "When I'm nice and slim once more, burgers, fries, and chips galore!". In actuality, under British terms, fries and chips are actually the same thing (Chips being the British equivalent of fries), with potato chips in Britain actually being Potato Crisps, so her line should be "When I'm nice and slim once more, burgers, chips, and crisps galore!".
- In the Japanese versions of the first game, instead of showing her to be rhyming in her dialogue, she is instead given a stereotypical (and exaggerated) old woman's drone.
- Also, Gruntilda's disembodied head at the end of Banjo-Tooie was censored in Japan. Instead, her head was put in a bag made from the remains of her clothing.
- She is so powerful that she can erase an entire save file. In the original Banjo-Kazooie, if the player typed cheat codes considered "illegal" by Gruntilda, she would erase the save file that they were cheating in.
- In Banjo and Kazooie's reveal trailer for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, King K. Rool parodies Gruntilda's defeat in the first Banjo-Kazooie by being knocked off a cliff by the Jinjonator before crashing into the ground and having a large rock crush him.
- It is speculated that the remains of the Mecha-Grunty were used to make the Hag 1.
- Originally, Mecha-Grunty was going to have multiple forms, including a bazooka form and a tank form, but it was later scrapped to save space.