Rare - News







  • News Rare's Local Video Game Store Is Closing Its Doors After 24 Years

    The changing nature of games retail claims another victim

    The way we buy games is changing, with digital sales slowly but surely taking over from physical. That means the landscape of games retail is gradually shifting, and all stores - from the big to the small - are feeling the pinch. With that in mind, we're sad to report that UK store Extreme...






  • News Hey! Pikmin Shows Nintendo Still Has A Soft Spot For Rare

    A tribute to an "Enduring Partnership"

    Rare and Nintendo enjoyed a particularly profitable relationship back in the '80s and '90s, with the UK-based studio creating hordes of titles for the NES, Game Boy, SNES and N64.  So close was the connection between the two companies that Nintendo eventually purchased a large stake in Rare and made it a...


  • News Rare Treasures Aims to Chronicle the History of Rare

    Published by Dark Horse Comics

    Rare was a prominent part of Nintendo’s history in the 90’s, responsible for major games such as Donkey Kong Country, Banjo-Kazooie, and GoldenEye 007, though it rather famously departed from the Big N in 2002 for supposedly greener pastures with Microsoft. Still, the company holds a special place in the heart of...


  • Video Get Green With This Complete History Of Battletoads

    Remembering Rash, Zitz & Pimple

    Battletoads - along with Rare's back catalogue - may be owned by Microsoft these days, but NES owners will always have a special place in their hearts for Rash, Zitz & Pimple, three radical amphibians with plenty of attitude. Created at a time when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles dominated TV, gaming and toy aisles,...


  • Feature Pay A Visit To Rare's Local Indie Video Game Store

    "They used to come in to buy their latest game to go in their vault"

    The English market town of Ashby-de-la-Zouch can chart its history as far back as the 11th century and owes its rather unusual name to the Norman Conquest of England around the same time, when the settlement - then known as plain old Ashby - became the property of the La Zouche...


















  • Gallery Imagining What Banjo-Kazooie Might Look Like in HD

    Bringing a Rare classic up to date

    Rare's classic N64 game Banjo-Kazooie is a fan favourite with retro gamers for good reason; even by today's standards this early 3D game is still incredibly charming and fun to play. Still, 1998 is a long time ago, and there is always room for improvement. Enter UK based 3D artist Neil Goodman, who has tasked...




  • News Rare Co-Founder Tim Stamper Is Back In The Games Industry

    Listed as a director of UK studio FortuneFish

    As any self-respecting Nintendo fan will know, Chris and Tim Stamper are the siblings who formed famous UK studio Rare. Once part of the Nintendo family and responsible for such hits as Donkey Kong Country, GoldenEye 007 and Banjo Kazooie, Rare is now under the wing of Microsoft — and the Stampers have...







  • 72

    Nintendo 64

    Review Jet Force Gemini

    A Rare gem?

    The Nintendo 64 and Rare go together like Banjo and Kazooie. The developer was behind several of the stellar titles found on the system, many of which were some of the most original games in history. One of the most unique titles released by the UK-based developer was the 3D action-shooter Jet Force Gemini, which launched in 1999. While...

  • News Gaze Upon One of the Rarest 3DS Systems

    Just five to be produced in Taiwan

    There have been lots of limited edition 3DS systems to date, including a good number that have only graced Japan. More are expected, of course, but the blue model pictured is possibly going to be the rarest of them all; only five will be produced and distributed in Taiwan. These models will be part of a promotion...


  • 55

    Nintendo 64

    Review Blast Corps

    Blast from the past

    Long before the mainstream commercialisation of video games that exists today, developers were mostly free from the shackles of big business. AAA games weren't bound by "sequelitis" — although it was still very much present — and the relative youth of 3D gaming had paved the way for innovation. In this regard, Blast Corps is...



  • News Happy 15th Birthday, Banjo-Kazooie!


    It’s hard to believe now, but before 31st May, 1998, no one believed that a bear in yellow shorts and a bird in a backpack could ever make an effective team. A spunky little Twycross-based company called Rare, however, set out to prove the world wrong, and did so with quite admirable results. Today marks the 15th anniversary of the North...

  • Review Banjo-Kazooie Symphony by The Blake Robinson Synthetic Orchestra

    A Rare treat

    Rare is a company that is fondly remembered by many Nintendo fans. While it had success on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System with the Donkey Kong Country series, it was during the years of the Nintendo 64 that the development studio truly came into its own. It produced hit after hit, arguably saving the 64-bit system from the...

  • News Microsoft To Announce Sequel To "Historic" Rare Franchise At E3

    Time to get jealous?

    In case you hadn't noticed, Microsoft lifted the lid on the Xbox One this week. The new system is the successor to the popular 360 console and will be getting plenty of support from the company's stable of internal developers — one of which is former Nintendo partner, Rare. The UK-based studio was purchased by Microsoft over...


  • News Grant Kirkhope Wishes He Could Make Banjo-Kazooie 3 For Nintendo

    Explains why Rare chose to make Nuts & Bolts

    Banjo-Kazooie is revered by many as one of the best games to ever grace the N64. The platformer, which starred a docile bear and a wise-cracking bird, could have ended up being something completely different as it was originally set to be a highly ambitious venture known as Project Dream. Speaking as a...

  • News GoldenEye 007 Multiplayer Took Just Six Weeks To Make

    Rare staffers put it together right at the end

    In 1997, Rare released GoldenEye 007 on the N64 and it became an absolute classic that arguably redefined the first person shooter genre and revolutionised the way multiplayer was done on home consoles. It all nearly never happened though as according to Grant Kirkhope, the composer behind the game's...




  • News The Truth Behind Donkey Kong Country's Opening Level Theme

    It's a stitch-up

    Remember the music for the opening level on Donkey Kong Country? Do you recall how it moves from one musical style to another, almost as if it's three different songs that have been fused together? That because it is. In an interview with CVG, former Rare composer David Wise reveals the truth behind the track: I was on holiday in...




  • News Wait, There's a Spectrum Emulator in GoldenEye?

    Secret agent

    Of all the cheats and secrets tucked away in GoldenEye 007, we never suspected Rare's N64 classic harboured a fully functioning ZX Spectrum 48k emulator. Rare began a coding experiment to see if the N64 could support a Spectrum emulator, even embedding old-school Rare games Sabre Wulf, Jetpac and more in the code. Clearly the experiment...



  • Rumour Rare Looking Into 3DS Development

    Banjo-Kazooie 3D a possibility

    The rumour mill has been churning up some pretty exciting stuff lately, and here's a bit that seems plausible considering that Microsoft saw no problem with Rare working on DS games like Viva Piñata and Diddy Kong Racing. Supposedly, the company is in talks with Nintendo to develop games for the 3DS platform,...


  • News GameCube Tech Demo Shows Banjo Threeie in Action

    What could have been...

    N64 adventures Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo Tooie made plenty of fans back in their 64-bit heyday, but they never appeared on the GameCube. A threequel was planned but never released, but now unreleased game-finders par excellence Unseen 64 have posted a short video of the project. Shown off at Spaceworld 2000 before the...

  • Talking Point Why Nintendo and Rare Should Reunite

    Is now the right time for Rare to come back home?

    Last week wasn't the best of times for the UK games industry. We reported that indie dev The Code Monkeys shut its doors after 23 years and on Friday Bizarre Creations – who produced the brilliant Project Gotham Racing for Microsoft, as well as the criminally underrated Blur – finally closed...


  • News Original GoldenEye Designer Suspicious of Wii Publisher's Eye for Gold

    Though developer Eurocom is in his good books

    Whether Activision is all about the money isn't really for us to say, but one thing most will agree on is that it has several franchises in its pockets into which at any given time the company can reach, pulling out a sequel or spin-off. So with the upcoming revival of the GoldenEye name, the publisher's motivation is being questioned by one of the..

  • News Rare Reveals Nintendo Wanted to Cancel GoldenEye

    The Bond title nobody wanted but everybody loves

    Ahh, GoldenEye 007: so many wasted hours, so many headshots, so many arguments over Oddjob. It all could have been so different had Rare acted on a letter sent by Nintendo that pulled the plug on the shooter. Speaking to British magazine EDGE, Studio Director Mark Betteridge revealed the team's initial trepidation when approached by Nintendo to..


  • News MundoRare Shuts Down After Losing Faith in Rare's New Direction

    Operators of long-running fan community saw no other choice

    When you have a fan community website that has been up and running for almost a decade, you'd think that it would stick by the developer through thick and thin, right? Apparently not, if that developer is Rare. It appears that MundoRare has run out of reasons to support the creator of such...


  • News Turns Out Shigeru Miyamoto Does Like Donkey Kong Country

    Miyamoto clears things up once and for all

    Following on from the E3 announcement of Donkey Kong Country Returns, it seems that something Shigeru Miyamoto had said in the past about the SNES original has re-surfaced. In a recent interview with IGN, Miyamoto cleared up the situation surrounding claims that he didn't like Donkey Kong Country, despite his involvement in the game's development. The..

  • Feature The Making of Jet Force Gemini - Part Two

    In the second and final part of our N64-themed making of, we look at the critical and commercial impact of one of Rare's best action titles

    One of the most refreshing aspects of Jet Force Gemini was the way in which the player’s progression throughout the various levels was handled; initially, the only character available is Juno, but eventually other heroes are added to the roster, each faced..

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