The video game industry is ever adapting, new tech, titles, franchises year to year. With all these changes it can be hard to focus on the past. That is why when something like Rare Replay comes along it is so very special.
While Rare’s more recent history (the past six years or so) haven’t been all that great; their total history was one of hits, cult classics and innovation. So in honor of Rare’s 30th anniversary Microsoft is packaging thirty classic Rare titles into one box for $29.99; with tons of extras. Not only is this a great deal, it preserves many all-time classics. Long before they were known for being the bane of GameStop employees, the Battletoads were the stars of one of the most challenging and entertaining 2D beat ‘em ups of all time. Killer Instinct Gold is what many fans remember as the best Killer Instinct, the Banjo games are so beloved that many still want a modern day sequel, and Perfect Dark was the standard for first person shooters when it came out and still holds up fairly well.
This list goes on and on, not only will the big name games be preserved, awesome cult hits such as Kameo, Viva Pinata, Blast Corps, and Jet Force Gemini will live on thanks to this collection. I wish more companies would do this; make an anthology of their backlog hits and sell it at a heavy discount. It benefits the consumer looking for great value, old fans wanting to relive their favorites, and has potential to draw new fans into these properties.
While all this is well in good there is another reason the Rare Replay is awesome beyond preserving history. The compilation also includes a documentary feature, “Rare Revealed”. It has over an hour of footage describing the history of the studio and the development of several major games. It includes concept art and information about unreleased Rare games as well (rest in peace Kameo 2), and insight to the inner workings of Rare. This isn’t just with the current staff either, the team at Rare went to former employees and did interviews on these subjects. This is huge for any Rare fans like myself.
The Rare Replay really looks like something that anyone with even just a slight interest in Rare, the history of video games, or anyone who wants a great deal should look into. I know if you like Rare’s past games as much as it I did, want to hear more about the inner workings of the studio this is a must buy for Rare fans.