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It Has Now Been 15 Years Since Microsoft Purchased Rare

daTRUballin

Member
Jun 2, 2015
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375
Portland, Oregon, United States
On September 24th 2002, Rare was wholly purchased by Microsoft for $375 million (yes, I know I'm making this thread a day early. I have legit reasons for doing so too. :p). It has now been 15 years since the purchase, and a lot has sure happened since then.

As one of the more major and infamous acquisitions in gaming, other acquisitions tend to be compared to it. Especially ones from first party console manufacturers. It definitely has affected all parties involved in various ways (Rare, Microsoft, Nintendo, gamers) and Rare's output over the last 15 years has been received in mixed ways.

Here's a complete list of all the games they've released on Xbox consoles since the acquisition:



Grabbed by the Ghoulies (Xbox, 2003)



Conker: Live & Reloaded (Xbox, 2005)



Kameo: Elements of Power (Xbox 360, 2005)

]

Perfect Dark Zero (Xbox 360, 2005)



Viva Piñata (Xbox 360, 2006)



Jetpac Refuelled (Xbox 360/XBLA, 2007)



Viva Piñata: Trouble in Paradise (Xbox 360, 2008)



Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts (Xbox 360, 2008)



Kinect Sports (Xbox 360/Kinect, 2010)



Kinect Sports: Season Two (Xbox 360/Kinect, 2011)



Kinect Sports Rivals (Xbox One/Kinect, 2014)



Rare Replay (Xbox One, 2015) Normally I don't count this one since it's a collection of previous games, but for the sake of a complete list, I'll include it here.

And finally, their current project:



Sea of Thieves (Xbox One, 2018?)

Looking at this list of games, what games did you like versus not like? What's your opinion on their Xbox output? What do you think of Rare in general these last 15 years? Was the purchase worth it for any party involved? What was your reaction when they were first bought? Did everything pan out the way you expected? What do you think of the company's future? What would you want them to do? Let's discuss anything and everything that has to do with the acquisition.

On a related note, this also means it's the 15th anniversary of one game in particular.......



.......So, there's that too.

(Hopefully this thread turns out well enough. I put a lot of effort into making this. :p)

EDIT: Fixed the images. Now they're actually showing. Sorry about that.
 
Dec 14, 2008
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I thought Perfect Dark Zero was fine for a launch title.

It's interesting that while EA is widely criticized for buying studios and shutting them down, what MS does is often ignored even though what they do is not much different.
 

meppi

Member
May 15, 2005
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1,155
One of the biggest examples of mismanagement of talent in this industry. :(
 

VanCityGamer

Member
Jan 11, 2013
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Disastrous output IMO. Could have and should have been so much better.

Conker's the only one I enjoyed at all from that list (on Rare Replay).

Oh, nevermind. It was the Nintendo Conker that I played on Rare Replay.

I also don't like the direction they're going with Sea of Thieves at all.
 

oti

Banned
Aug 5, 2012
37,120
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Conker absolutely needs to come back and include multiplayer once again.

Viva Pinata 3 should be a thing.

Perfect Dark should be rebooted by another studio.
God no.

It would be a F2P mobile game.

Eh. I don't see a market for that tbh.
 

bluexy

Member
Jan 16, 2014
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Phoenix, AZ
One of the biggest examples of mismanagement of talent in this industry. :(
It really feels like Rare's never been able to spread its wings and make something special in these 15 years. That's not to say they haven't made good games since the acquisition, as they're obviously a very talented studio. I'm a big fan of both Viva Pinata games myself.

I'm hoping Sea of Thieves is that game for Rare. A new age... of piratesI don't doubt that Microsoft's made its expectations clear -- microtransactions, expansions, cross-play, 4K scalability. But maybe these expectations are broad enough to give Rare the freedom it needs to make something special, where requirements like Kinect, kid-friendly target audience, or development output has been too limiting.
 

Camjo-Z

Member
Aug 3, 2012
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555
Pennsylvania, USA
As a huge Rare fanboy the buyout is basically the only reason I care about Xbox. I bought a 360 solely to play Viva Pinata and Nuts & Bolts and I bought an Xbone solely to play Killer Instinct. People like to say Rare died after Nintendo but I'm still a big fan of their MS output, aside from the Kinect Sports games the only real stinker in the bunch is Perfect Dark Zero.

Also, this thread reminded me that Kameo remains the one 360-era Rare game I've never put more than a couple of hours into. Guess now's as good a time to remedy that as any.
 

Electret

Member
May 14, 2014
943
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Conker absolutely needs to come back and include multiplayer once again.

Viva Pinata 3 should be a thing.

Perfect Dark should be rebooted by another studio.
I'd be fine with that. But inb4 "turn it into a third person stealth action game". NO! OG PD is a first person game with an emphasis on shooting, and plays quite differently from pretty much any other FPS in the last five or ten years. A new game should be build on its foundation - make it objective-based and allow completion in different orders and pathways, and include a deep roster of guns and gadgets with alternate modes of operation.
 

Zojirushi

Member
Jul 22, 2015
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I think Perfect Dark could totally be a Deus Ex type game, too bad that genre seems dead right now.
 

Yazzees

Member
Jul 22, 2015
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Is that "Do we own Donkey Kong now?" story true or nah

Because if so, it really speaks to the managerial hands that Rare found themselves in
 

butalala

Member
Jan 24, 2014
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Rare's absence felt strongly in the Gamecube days. I think I had some anger at Nintendo for not holding onto them to fill in some of the software gaps they had back then.

I haven't played a game they released after Star Fox Adventures. I felt some pull to try Nuts & Bolts, but now I just don't really care. Rare was once my favorite developer. It's sort of sad, but enough time has passed that I've moved on.
 

Geno Breaker

Banned
Jul 17, 2014
1,267
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315
California
RIP

I really miss the old type of games they use to make for Nintendo platforms. Shame they started going downhill at the end of the N64 era.
 

Jumeira

Member
Aug 11, 2015
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Viva Pinata is as good as anything Rare put out during thier golden days. Theyve not made a bad game, even though some games were disappointing.

Sea of Thieves is getting extremely strong previews and impressions, it looks like its going to be something special, and ive witnessed lots of the old Rare magic in there.

BUT im hoping we do see some effort focused on quality SP games and perhaps a Perfect Dark revival as a 3rd person shooter. Going by the interview with Rare's head posted earlier, looks like they're still thinking up new ideas for these games, but they shouldn't ignore there is alot of fans still that want to replay some of the franchises they've got stored away.
 

VGdrumCovers

Member
Feb 23, 2016
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Kingston Upon Hull
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RIP Laptop gun
RIP exceptional staff members who are now gone
RIP an amazing legacy
RIP Perfect Dark (please hand this to another studio)

It's a shame. Although it massively sucks with the Kinect - I dont believe that Rare 'chose' to focus their main power on this? Must have been a day from higher ups, only to have the peripheral completely die on its arse years later! (Anyone got more of an insight into this from an industry perspective?)
 

Renna Hazel

Member
Mar 15, 2017
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Definitely the worst thing to happen in gaming for me. Rare was such a huge part of the industry for me and losing them really stings. Hopefully I get them back one day :(
 

Jafku

Member
Sep 23, 2009
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Pretty poor output. Luckily Sea of Thieves seems to be one of their better projects. It's at least better than the dark days of Kinect Sports games
 

Camjo-Z

Member
Aug 3, 2012
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555
Pennsylvania, USA
I'd be fine with that. But inb4 "turn it into a third person stealth action game". NO! OG PD is a first person game with an emphasis on shooting, and plays quite differently from pretty much any other FPS in the last five or ten years. A new game should be build on its foundation - make it objective-based and allow completion in different orders and pathways, and include a deep roster of guns and gadgets with alternate modes of operation.
I'm always bewildered when people suggest a new Perfect Dark should take a completely different route from the original. This isn't some Jet Force Gemini where the original was a bit rough to begin with, if the finely crafted PD gameplay is going to be completely thrown out the window why even bother reusing the name? You might as well just make a new IP that's not shackled to fan expectations lest we get another Nuts & Bolts-esque "good game but not a good PD game".
 
Jul 28, 2014
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Is that "Do we own Donkey Kong now?" story true or nah

Because if so, it really speaks to the managerial hands that Rare found themselves in
It was an offhand comment from a random executive who had been visiting the newly acquired studio. It was never a reason for Microsoft to buy Rare but it's still funny.
 

Vinc

Member
Mar 8, 2014
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Conker, Banjo, and Kameo are the only games I liked, and none of them live up to the company's name.

They were my favorite company in their Nintendo days :(