Rare Replay Review

  • Publisher: Microsoft Studios
  • Developer: Rare
  • MSRP: $29.99
  • Rated: E-M
  • Release Date: August 4th, 2015
  • Platform: Xbox One
  • Rating: ★★★★★

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From the moment I started playing Rare Replay, with a very well done opening sequence, I immediately realized this was more than a tagline used to sell this collection of 30 games for $30; Rare Replay is a celebration of one of the greatest and most talented developers in the history of gaming. Simply put, if you do not own this collection on your Xbox One console your missing out on 30 iconic games in history and possibly the best deal for any collection of games. you’ll find.

While Rare Replay has a lot of content packaged into this collection, it is more than just these games.  Rare has packaged the whole presentation into this with developer diaries, behind the scenes videos, and even sneak peeks into some of Rare’s never released projects. All of these items are earned within playing the iconic 30 games, which also packs in a whopping 10,000 Gamerscore! 4,000 of this Gamerscore is earned within Rare Replay itself.  Classics like Perfect Dark or all three of the Banjo Kazooie titles, for instance, are actually the Xbox 360 editions of the games, featuring their own gamer scores, also shows off how exactly the new to Xbox One backwards compatibility works. To those (like myself) who wanted to re-earn these achievements from the 360 titles, it is not possible unfortunately. If you already played these on 360 the data automatically transfers to Rare Replay. For example I had 100% Banjo Kazooie and Banjo Tooie in the past on Xbox 360, Rare Replay instantly noticed this and brought my progress over to Rare Replay and all the milestones for them, meaning the behind the scenes videos and more for these titles were already unlocked. This still didn’t stop me though from wanting to still play these with my Xbox One controller.

The entire package is presented very nicely. As a collection, Rare Replay puts the game almost into a theater like setting. Each game on the menu is presented on a wall almost like a theater poster. Choose whichever title you would like and then you can get started immediately. Each game works as intended. The very first title I went for was Battletoads Arcade with my friends in couch co-op. Having never played this before it was certainly a blast and I didn’t notice any slow downs at all with the three of us playing. All the other titles we tried, even Perfect Dark with split-screen, ran with no slow downs, crashes, and was absolutely bug free which is a sigh of relief for sure and felt great not to have to worry about the collection. In addition to these games are bite size challenges in the form of playlists. This is big reminder to me on how NES Remix from Nintendo works. Your playing the classic games, but with certain traits that make it more difficult. For example, my favorite was playing JetPac and trying to assemble my ship in 60 seconds but without my weapon to shoot with. You earn achievements and rankings in Rare Replay for completing these tasks.

One of the most disappointing exclusions from the collection are certain Nintendo owned properties that Rare developed, such as the Donkey Kong Country series, but that isn’t very surprising.   The absence of others such as Golden Eye is more confusing as to why it wasn’t included in this amazing collection, though there were most likely plenty of licensing issues even with that. This doesn’t take away from the big experience here, but still means you won’t see all of Rare’s fantastic work.

Rare Replay is a must have for any Xbox One owner. Whether you have ever played any of these titles before or if you’re just discovering the ones you long missed, this is a fantastic deal and shows how well done a collection can be. Rare has put out something special for all gamers. It’s a celebration for one of the most respected and talented development teams in the history of gaming. 30 games for $30 is the best deal you will see this year.

 

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