Rare is widely considered by long-time fans to have fallen from fame since its GoldenEye and Donkey Kong Country days as a Nintendo studio, but Rare studio manager Scott Henson insists the studio has "lived up to its potential".
Speaking to Industry Gamers, Henson argues: "We didn't fall off the map. We might have changed and evolved. Our focus is different, but we haven't fallen off the map."
Fans of old Rare might beg to differ, but Henson points to one recent success as a sign of Rare's continuing significance. "Fallen off the map is interesting when you sell over three million units," he said in reference to Kinect Sports - the Wii Sports-alike Kinect launch title.
"I like that falling off the map. It's great success in this industry," he added, setting off sarcasm detectors.
"If you look at what Rare has done," he went on, "whether it was Killer Instinct in the arcade or Donkey Kong Country and pushing pre-rendered graphics, they always innovate as a studio. That has stayed the same."
It was huge news when Rare jumped ship from Nintendo to Microsoft. Xbox fans were expectedly in for a blast with Rare on board. Has it lived up to expectations?
"We absolutely have," said Henson, who joined Rare late last year.
"We delivered as much to the platform as any other studio. With the success of Kinect Sports and what I believe will be a successful Season Two, I think Rare lived up to its potential," he added, before saying Rare's work on Microsoft's Xbox Avatars "goes far beyond anything the studio has ever done".
Hanson looks to the future. "We're excited about Season Two and it's something to celebrate. The title itself is about connecting people to video games. It's a new Rare. It's an exciting place to push boundaries for what's possible."
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