Rare Ltd.

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Rare Ltd.
Rare logo 2015.png
Founded 1985
Founders Tim Stamper
Chris Stamper
Headquarters Twycross, England
Parent Microsoft
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"We've been making golden memories and redefining gaming genres since 1985, and that's not about to change. Everything we do is true to our goals of pursuing new experiences and putting players first. Still ahead of the game after three decades of evolution, there's no other studio in the world quite like Rare."

Rare Ltd., often known as Rare and formerly by their trade name Rareware, is a British video game development company. They have developed many video games, many of which were on Nintendo consoles. Since 2002, the entire company is owned by Microsoft and has since had their games on Xbox console. Rare has two studios: one in Twycross, in Leicestershire, England and one in Digbeth, in Birmingham, England. It was founded in 1985, as the successor company to Ultimate Play the Game.


Rare evolved from Ultimate Play the Game, a company which mainly designed games for the ZX Spectrum, such as Jetpac and Sabre Wulf, and would become the biggest UK-based video game development companies. The ZX Spectrum was only popular in the UK, and at the time had a large problem with piracy of home computer software. Believing they hit a dead end, the Stamper brothers sought another console to create games on.[2]

In 1984, Tim and Chris Stamper got their first look at a Japanese home console, the Famicom. Because the Famicom was more advanced than the ZX Spectrum, the Stamper brothers saw potential in the console. In 1985, the brothers formed a subdivision of Ultimate Play the Game, called Rare, which was dedicated reverse-engineering the Famicom. With successful results and with the help of Joel Hochberg, the Stamper brothers were arranged to meet Nintendo executive Minoru Arakawa in Kyoto, Japan.[3] During the meeting, the Stamper brothers presented a few software demos to Nintendo. At the time, Nintendo had a quality-control measure that restricted its third-party developers to the number of games that they could produce for the Famicom, or the Nintendo Entertainment System, in a given year. Nintendo was impressed with Rare's results and granted them a license to release as many games as they wanted.[4] To help fund Rare, the Stamper brothers sold off Ultimate Play the Game to U.S. Gold.[3]

Rare would become one of the first companies outside of Japan to develop games for the Nintendo Entertainment System.[4] This led to games such as Wizards & Warriors, Battle Toads, and R.C. Pro-Am. A long and lucrative partnership was started between Rare and Nintendo, which would fully take root in 1994 with the release of Donkey Kong Country.

In 2002, Microsoft bought Rareware. Since then, Rareware has made console games strictly for Microsoft, but also made handheld games for Nintendo, by publishing them through THQ. During the summer of 2010, Rareware opened a new studio in Digbeth, in Birmingham, England.

While working for Microsoft, Rare has also helped create the Xbox Live Avatars. They have stated that they are focusing more on Microsoft's new controller-free peripheral, Kinect. Rare's first game to be released for Kinect was Kinect Sports.

Famous Games

Famous Members


External links


Rare Ltd. on other wikis:
  1. "Rare Ltd. - Creators of Rare Replay and Sea of Thieves". Rare Ltd. - Creators of Rare Replay and Sea of Thieves. Retrieved 17 July, 2015.
  2. "Behind The Scenes At Rare: Killer Instinct Gold Interview". RareGamer
  3. 3.0 3.1 Maher, Jimmy. 14 January, 2014. "The Legend of Ultimate Play the Game". The Digital Antiquarian.
  4. 4.0 4.1 McLaughlin, Rus. 28 July, 2008. "IGN Presents the History of Rare". IGN. Retrieved 17 July, 2015.