From Commodore 64 to N64 and beyond.
Presentation: 10/10 Thirty games spanning thirty years in almost every genre you could want on a console. Including Banjo Kazooie, Killer Instinct, Conkers Bad Fur Day, Perfect Dark, Cobra Triangle, Battletoads, RC Pro AM, and Kameo, just to name a few. This collection is an interactive museum of the evolution of console gaming. A near-perfect tribute to a studio with one of the richest and diverse libraries the industry has ever seen.
Gameplay: 8/10 Some games play better than others. The pre-NES titles were clearly products of limited technology and pioneering mechanics that have since come a long way. It shows, but these games are more here because they were significant to the history of the studio. When you have thirty titles, there are sure to be a few that are more lackluster than others. I can say that after a patch that fixed Jet Force Gemini, I have hope that another patch could tweak the few hang ups I found with a few other games.
Yeah, we got Battletoads.
Graphics: 8/10 Solid throughout. Frame-rates can fluctuate but never experienced a freeze or crash. Given my experience with both console and emulator versions of many of these games, I’ve come to expect major technical hiccups from time to time but so far, the on-disc builds of each game seems to be the most definitive version yet. It’s a nitpick but I wish they could have stretched the post-NES titles to full screen so the Banjo and Perfect Dark titles didn’t stand out as much as they already do, being the Xbox 360 versions.
Sound: 9/10 Each game sounds good for it’s time. Rare never lacked for competent music composers and it shows. Each game has it’s own style and the menu tracks help add dimension to the pre-NES titles, so even the less technical tunes don’t feel out of place. Every tune, every sound effect feels nostalgic and creative. It makes me nostalgic every time I play an older game to listen to soundtracks made before every game had an orchestrated score. The intro tune is infectiously catchy too. You’ve been warned.
The menu tunes are delightful!
Value: 10/10 For $30 you get a handful of some of the best games ever made, and about 20 more worth playing just for the experience of seeing how far we’ve come in three decades. When you consider that Microsoft could have spent the next year slowly leaking each Rare Replay title onto the Xbox Live Marketplace for $5 each, the value becomes immediately apparent. Until the release of Rare Replay, it would cost over $1000 to play all these titles legitimately, and this is where the true value in Rare Replay shines. Making these old title available to the masses is a much needed step in the preservation of these great ole games.
The concept in and of itself is a noble and ambitious one to say the least. It serves as both a solid tribute to Rare as a studio, and a glimpse at the evolution of popular genres and graphic styles over the years. Rare Replay sets the standard for what will be expected from retro game compilations moving forward, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds. Anyone who plays video games as a hobby, owes it to themselves to pick up Rare Replay.
Glaring omissions and all.
- Thirty games on one disc
- Some are the best in their genre...
- Can't say that for every game
- PD, Banjo not on disc...
- Missing Goldeneye 007