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I grew up in what I debatably consider Rare’s heyday. Banjo Kazooie, Perfect Dark, Conker and many other games defined gaming for me in the late nineties. Therefore, having only recently acquired an Xbox One, Imagine my joy to find a bundle of thirty Rare classics at my fingertips. Naturally, I bought the Rare Replay collection immediately.
The N64 – Where I Fell in Love with Gaming
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I loved my N64, I’d go so far as to say that it’s my favourite console.
Banjo Kazooie and Tooie started a love affair with Rare’s work that has led me to buy virtually everything they’ve produced since. Ah, Captain Blubber, how your burped dialogue makes me chuckle.
While the N64 had its share of Nintendo developed treasures, it’s the Rare games I always find myself going back to. I can’t quite put my finger on why, but there’s something about these Rare classics that transcend generations.
When I play Mario 64, it’s still fun but there’s something missing, lost in translation over time. Perhaps it’s the tongue in cheek humour or the unforgettable characters?
Whatever it is, there’s something about games from this era in Rare’s history that keeps them feeling fresh even today. I relish the opportunity to play them again!
Rare Replay – A Bargain by Any Standard
The collection comes with thirty games, spanning 1983 to 2008. *At Amazon, the bundle is a steal and the full list of titles are there for your perusal. Here are some of my personal highlights:
Banjo Kazooie and Tooie – The adventures of a bear and bird in their quest to thwart the evil witch, Gruntilda. These platformers are charming, funny and great for all ages. They feel smashing to play even by today’s standards and the kids will love the colourful, feature-packed worlds.
Conker’s Bad Fur Day – There’s quite a bit of adult-focused humour, hence not one for the sprogs. It’s hilarious though. It takes all the imaginative character design of Banjo and places a foul-mouthed, drunk squirrel at the helm as the hero. The dialogue might seem a bit dated, but there are hours of laughs to be had here.
Perfect Dark – If you owned an N64 and the original Perfect Dark, you’ll likely remember how ambitious it was. The game was simply too demanding back in those days, therefore chugging frame rates could sometimes spoil an otherwise thrilling game. With the power of a modern console, however, you’ll find the game gloriously playable and better than ever.
Grabbed by the Ghoulies – The title sums up the whole game. This was one of my favourites on the original Xbox. Ghosts at a haunted house steal your girlfriend when you take shelter from a storm. How do you get her back? Simple. Pick up anything you can lay your hands on and beat the undead crap out of them until they yield. Fun in spades to be had here.
Rare Replay – An Amusing Trip Down Memory lane
There’s so much here to praise that I could write for hours. I haven’t even mentioned any games from the eighties and early nineties, just the ones I remember most fondly. If you haven’t got an Xbox One yet, the new S models are remarkable machines. Ultra HD Blu-ray player built-in too! *I’ve got one of these suave grey models.
I suggest you massive Rare fans check out Yooka-Laylee. The game revitalises some of that classic Rare style!
If you’re a keen gamer have a look at my guide to making your own. A great diversion for the kids too!
Finally, what’s your favourite Rare game? Are there any missing from the collection you wish you could play again?