Whats up with Rare? (The Game developers)

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So back in the day of the N64 and later the Xbox, I was a massive fan of Rare, like most n64 fan boys who had nothing else good to cling to, besides the constant chimes of "Legend of Zelda". I just picked up Banjo Kazooie Nuts & Bolt, having heard good things about it from numerous reviewers, even Yahtzee. It set of the nostalgic in me, bringing back joy fill memories of colour-filled locales, and strangely grunting characters, who often sounded like someone had stitched up their lips and they were trying to say their lines.

Any who, playing this game reminded me of exactly why I loved Rare so much. Which led me to do a little research into what they have been up to, and I have to say, I'm a little disappointed. With the exception of Viva Pinata, all their website tells me is that they have fallen to the lowly depth of Kinetic developer. Please tell me it isn't so?

Can someone cheer me and shine some light on what Rare has been up to the last few years? Is there anything great to be expected, or have they truly fallen to such dissolution that they are regulated to pumping out Kinetic sports games every season? And what do you enjoy about Rare?

Microsoft happened.

After they were bought nearly everything they did was relatively shit.

Also guys like David Doak left to form developers like Free Radical who got chewed up by Lucasarts.

That sucks...I miss Rare. God damned Microscum.

*sniffle* Reminds me of the time when Britain used to be a major player in development.

Looks like Rare...

*put on sunglasses*

Is overcooked.

Like a lot of older devs, they just don't have the talent to make good games anymore. Most likely because most of their best employees have moved on to greener pastures.

Daystar Clarion:
Looks like Rare...

*put on sunglasses*

Is overcooked.

Goddamn you Daystar! Took my line!

Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

Vanitas likes Bubbles:

Daystar Clarion:
Looks like Rare...

*put on sunglasses*

Is overcooked.

Goddamn you Daystar! Took my line!

Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

You should play Goldeneye 64 and Perfect Dark. They are seen as two of the best games for the N64. The MP in it still holds up when you play with friends.

Vanitas likes Bubbles:

Daystar Clarion:
Looks like Rare...

*put on sunglasses*

Is overcooked.

Goddamn you Daystar! Took my line!

Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

Pfft, as if, I stole nothing!

Looks like Vanita's bubble...

*Puts on sunglasses*

Just got popped.

Vanitas likes Bubbles:
Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

Never played Donkey Kong Country? Killer Instinct?

They used to be huge in the SNES days. And man, I feel old :(

Matthew94:

Vanitas likes Bubbles:

Daystar Clarion:
Looks like Rare...

*put on sunglasses*

Is overcooked.

Goddamn you Daystar! Took my line!

Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

You should play Goldeneye 64 and Perfect Dark. They are seen as two of the best games for the N64. The MP in it still holds up when you play with friends.

Oh.... I forgot that they made them. Yeah, played, loved them.

Daystar Clarion:

Vanitas likes Bubbles:

Daystar Clarion:
Looks like Rare...

*put on sunglasses*

Is overcooked.

Goddamn you Daystar! Took my line!

Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

Pfft, as if, I stole nothing!

Looks like Vanita's bubble...

*Puts on sunglasses*

Just got popped.

Well I guess it looks like Daystar....... yeah I got nothing.

You win this time, but I'll be back...... just you wait Daystar.... I'll be back with better and bigger yeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaah thingys. Muhahahahahaha.....

Selvec:
So back in the day....

As far as I know they just do kinect games. If you really like Rare I recommend watching the Machinama series "All Your History Are Belong to Us"

PART II


PART III

PART IV

PART V

It doesn't tell you much of the future, but its a good trip down memory lane.

-----

WoW Killer:

Vanitas likes Bubbles:
Anyway, I don't think I've played a Rare game other than the original Banjo Kazooie.

Never played Donkey Kong Country? Killer Instinct?

They used to be huge in the SNES days. And man, I feel old :(

Goldeneye how can all of you forget Goldeneye.

Rare was sorta the first company to popularize the 'swallowed up by major corporations, bled out and left to rot' idea. For a current example you can look to EA and Bioware. Heh.

Rare was once one of the mighty giants that could develop classic platformers. They also made good shooters. During the sixth generation of gaming, shooters were becoming popular and platformers were still good. Microsoft decided to get a good developper that could create games in both of those genres.

The only notable thing that I can remember Rare made during the sixth generation was Conker Live & Reloaded which was a remake of the N64's classic Conker's Bad Fur day. Single-player was still great, since they barely change anything except maybe a little more censoring. Multiplayer changed...a lot...It used to be different types of game modes which were fun. The newer game introduced a team-based shooter type of game. It only had a few game modes like assault, capture the flag and control point. It was okay, but it wasn't awesome as the original game.

And then... the seventh generation came...It started with Perfect Dark Zero which was a failure. Rare tried many times to recreate the magic with only some minor successes like the games you've mentionned. The whole studio's staff was replaced and Microsoft wanted Kinect games. They've made Kinect Sport and that's it. Microsoft haven't given them a reason to live. They also don't seem interested in doing something...

Zack Alklazaris:
snip

And wow... I never realised they made Battletoads. Mind = blown.

kman123:
Rare was sorta the first company to popularize the 'swallowed up by major corporations, bled out and left to rot' idea. For a current example you can look to EA and Bioware. Heh.

Kind of the norm for British studios. Core and Psygnosis were both Sony lapdogs. The thing is they all had their best years this way, much like Rare did with Nintendo. If anything it was the bigger emphasis on cross-platform development that came with the PS2/Xbox generation that killed them all off.

WoW Killer:

They used to be huge in the SNES days. And man, I feel old :(

Bitch, please

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5uZk5qwgjI&fmt=18

kman123:
Rare was sorta the first company to popularize the 'swallowed up by major corporations, bled out and left to rot' idea. For a current example you can look to EA and Bioware. Heh.

That's so wrong it's not even funny.

EA was doing that before it was cool. Just look at Westwood, Bullfrog and Origin.

I'm one of the biggest Rare fans I know. In both real life and on this website, I have constantly stated my praise for Banjo Kazooie and Banjo Tooie. Those two games are what made my childhood, and they will carry the title of "my favorite game" to my grave.

What happened to Rare is nothing short of a tragedy. A company that made quirky and/or memorable titles, gobbled up my Micro$oft, and then shat out to produce lackluster titles that have been stripped of their charm. There are exceptions to this, such as Kameo: Elements of Power as well as Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts (which isn't a bad game mind you, just not a Banjo Kazooie game), but the majority of what they produce now is, well, shit. If it is true that Micro$oft gutted the company of their original creative team, then that might explain what happened.

It's really a shame, because they made (IMHO) some of the greatest games of all time.

Yeah, Rare's gone.

I remember back when they made Donkey Kong Country. They were at the top of their game, and Nintendo more or less considered them to be the go-to studio for killer apps. Then Microsoft happened, Nintendo kept the characters, and mostly anything they ever worked on dropped out of existence.

You're lucky to have ex-Rare guys working on MS' item marketplace, nowadays. The prop lightsaber or the kitten you might have purchased? Rare.

Well ever since their way of business changed they had pretty much gone downhill and from the look of things only making Kinect games at the moment.

No Love for Blast Corps? I used to love that game, Powersliding my dump truck through a building in order to clear a path for a runaway missle!

You know what? For all everyone says that Rare hasn't produced anything worth a damn since the N64, I still think Viva Pinata is an incredibly underrated game. It's not perfect, but it's a damn good sim game, it's got a wonderful atmosphere that's family friendly without being cloying, and it's one of the few 360 exclusives of note that isn't focused on killing stuff with guns... and as Jim Sterling pointed out a while ago, it looks absolutely stunning. Incredible art direction, great animation and very smooth visuals.

As for Perfect Dark Zero... it's not great, but it's not the crime against humanity a lot of people make it out to be. The developers at least tried some interesting new concepts for the time, such as the way HUD elements interacted directly with the world. At the end of the day, a failed experiment is still far better than something that doesn't dare to experiment at all.

Matthew94:

kman123:
Rare was sorta the first company to popularize the 'swallowed up by major corporations, bled out and left to rot' idea. For a current example you can look to EA and Bioware. Heh.

That's so wrong it's not even funny.

EA was doing that before it was cool. Just look at Westwood, Bullfrog and Origin.

This is very true, Bullfrog espicially. I dont even remember Bullfrog doing any bad games, Theme park/Hospital, Syndicate, Populous, Dungeon Keeper 1+2. All quality every last one of them.

While I don't think they're as good as they once were I wouldn't go so far as to say they lost all talent the instant Microsoft bought them, hell Viva Pinata was rather nice from what I understand and Kameo was one of the better early 360 games, sure they did make Perfect Dark Zero and Grabbed by the Ghoulies (admit it you repressed the memory of this piece of shit) but I'd hardly say that was all of Microsoft's influence.

Also: Why am I the only one that remembers Jet Force Gemini?!?

WoW Killer:
*sniffle* Reminds me of the time when Britain used to be a major player in development.

The UK used to have a good games industry but things started going downhill will the fall of Eidos, It's just another casualty of big business and globalisation and a government that is only bothered about banking, retail and cost cutting

targren:

WoW Killer:

They used to be huge in the SNES days. And man, I feel old :(

Bitch, please

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5uZk5qwgjI&fmt=18

My lawn. Get off it. I still have my VIC-20, but sadly not a copy of the game, although my friend still has the BBC Micro version.

Matthew94:
Microsoft happened.

After they were bought nearly everything they did was relatively shit.

Also guys like David Doak left to form developers like Free Radical who got chewed up by Lucasarts.

Really? Damn. I loved the Banjo Kazooie games. Even Nuts and Bolts.

Looks like we'll never discover the secret of Stop'n'Swap

EDIT: As Jeffers pointed out, Viva Pinata was really good. :)

The sequel? Eh... Not so much.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

My lawn. Get off it. I still have my VIC-20, but sadly not a copy of the game, although my friend still has the BBC Micro version.

Well-played, but technically not a Rare game. ;)

I still fondly remember Sabre Wulf though... *nostalgic sigh*

Rare was my favourite game dev by far back in the day :(
Literally every single game they made on the N64 was awesome

Honestly, I never cared for much of what they did that wasn't Goldeneye and Perfect Dark anyway. They had a few other titles that ranged from awesome (Blast Corps.) to all right (the original Donkey Kong Country games. I never cared for the feel of the controls, but aside from that they were pretty well put together). But most of their titles after they hit the N64 I couldn't stand. I hated every attempt they made at a 3D platformer (Banjo-Kazooie was probably their best one I played and it was bad. By DK64 it was clear they had lost what mojo they had once had). Then the Gamecube came around and, yeah. We won't talk about Starfox Adventures thanks. So the only titles that I loved were their first two FPS titles, and many of the people responsible for those left to form Free Radical and do Timesplitters as early as 2000 or so. So I might be the only person not the least bit shocked at how far they've fallen these days.

WoW Killer:
*sniffle* Reminds me of the time when Britain used to be a major player in development.

R.I.P. Empire.

Well, we can still have another war with Argentina over the Falklands, but this time there's oil! :D

OT: Idk never played an N64 game on an N64 :3 heard shit things about the post-microsoft stuff though.

scorptatious:

Matthew94:
Microsoft happened.

After they were bought nearly everything they did was relatively shit.

Also guys like David Doak left to form developers like Free Radical who got chewed up by Lucasarts.

Really? Damn. I loved the Banjo Kazooie games. Even Nuts and Bolts.

Looks like we'll never discover the secret of Stop'n'Swap

EDIT: As Jeffers pointed out, Viva Pinata was really good. :)

The sequel? Eh... Not so much.

Stop and Swop was a failed thing that was supposed to get you stuff in Banjo Tooie, but they couldn't get it working, so they just scrapped it for the game. If you have Banjo Kazooie for Xbox live the stop and swop works, and can get you stuff in Nuts & Bolts instead of Tooie (I think stop and swop is in Tooie on XBL for Nuts and Bolts, but I haven't yet downloaded that for XBL)

Random Argument Man:
Rare was once one of the mighty giants that could develop classic platformers. They also made good shooters. During the sixth generation of gaming, shooters were becoming popular and platformers were still good. Microsoft decided to get a good developper that could create games in both of those genres.

The only notable thing that I can remember Rare made during the sixth generation was Conker Live & Reloaded which was a remake of the N64's classic Conker's Bad Fur day. Single-player was still great, since they barely change anything except maybe a little more censoring. Multiplayer changed...a lot...It used to be different types of game modes which were fun. The newer game introduced a team-based shooter type of game. It only had a few game modes like assault, capture the flag and control point. It was okay, but it wasn't awesome as the original game.

And then... the seventh generation came...It started with Perfect Dark Zero which was a failure. Rare tried many times to recreate the magic with only some minor successes like the games you've mentionned. The whole studio's staff was replaced and Microsoft wanted Kinect games. They've made Kinect Sport and that's it. Microsoft haven't given them a reason to live. They also don't seem interested in doing something...

You forgot to mention that Rare (or what's left of it) also made the Xbox 360 Avatars.

That Annoying Guy:

Random Argument Man:
Rare was once one of the mighty giants that could develop classic platformers. They also made good shooters. During the sixth generation of gaming, shooters were becoming popular and platformers were still good. Microsoft decided to get a good developper that could create games in both of those genres.

The only notable thing that I can remember Rare made during the sixth generation was Conker Live & Reloaded which was a remake of the N64's classic Conker's Bad Fur day. Single-player was still great, since they barely change anything except maybe a little more censoring. Multiplayer changed...a lot...It used to be different types of game modes which were fun. The newer game introduced a team-based shooter type of game. It only had a few game modes like assault, capture the flag and control point. It was okay, but it wasn't awesome as the original game.

And then... the seventh generation came...It started with Perfect Dark Zero which was a failure. Rare tried many times to recreate the magic with only some minor successes like the games you've mentionned. The whole studio's staff was replaced and Microsoft wanted Kinect games. They've made Kinect Sport and that's it. Microsoft haven't given them a reason to live. They also don't seem interested in doing something...

You forgot to mention that Rare (or what's left of it) also made the Xbox 360 Avatars.

Oh yeah, I forgot that. Well....what he said..

It's sad when the go-to guy for platformers became the go-to guy for avatars. Kinect Sport was okay, but the fun is short unless you have a party.

targren:

Nalgas D. Lemur:

My lawn. Get off it. I still have my VIC-20, but sadly not a copy of the game, although my friend still has the BBC Micro version.

Well-played, but technically not a Rare game. ;)

I still fondly remember Sabre Wulf though... *nostalgic sigh*

Yeah, I know it doesn't officially count, but I couldn't help it. It was still set up in the corner of the basement maybe ten years ago, and we'd fire it up sometimes to play a bit of Jetpac or Firetrack or Repton or whatever. And of course to let Bonecruncher yell, "NOW YOU DIE, MONSTERS!" Heh.

Dragon Zero:
Also: Why am I the only one that remembers Jet Force Gemini?!?

I still remember Jet Force Gemini. It was one of my favorite games of all times and the first shooter I can remember playing. I have actually begun replaying it recently as well.

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