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This Is Why Nintendo Lost Rare To Microsoft

Nintendo was on top of the world when it released the Nintendo 64, and the console boasted a few titles that would send the system's success to new heights. Sure, people enjoyed Super Mario 64, but gamers everywhere fell in love with GoldenEye 007. That game was developed by Rare and published by Nintendo.


Rare would become a staple in the Nintendo 64's success. The developer was behind some of the system's fan-favorite games. Titles such as Banjo-Kazooie, Donkey Kong 64, and Perfect Dark were at the forefront of the company's achievements. Rare made its mark on the Nintendo 64, but its success was short-lived: The developer ended up parting ways with Nintendo and making its way over to Microsoft. The Nintendo GameCube would find very little success, and some conclude that the loss of Rare was a sizable reason as to why.

But why did Nintendo lose Rare to Microsoft?

Nintendo didn't see value in Rare

Nintendo let go of Rare because it didn't see very much value in the studio. Nintendo described the sale as a strategic redirection of its investments. Nintendo could have kept Rare, but the company wanted to move away from second-party developers. The company lost the developer, but it was still able to retain multiple titles rights to games such as Donkey Kong and Star Fox.


Microsoft, meanwhile, cashed in big with Rare. It didn't come cheap, though, with a hefty $375 million price tag. Tim Stamper, co-founder of Rare, was dumbfounded when Nintendo didn't make the effort to fully acquire the company. "I thought we were a good fit," he stated in an interview with MCV/Develop. Unfortunately, Nintendo thought otherwise, so Microsoft swooped in and got the train chugging along. 

Rare's still going today. Keep your eyes on Rare as they work with Microsoft on the latest installment of Perfect Dark.