Stamper brothers leave Rare

Cofounders of Microsoft development house part ways with the studio after more than 20 years.

More than two decades ago, brothers Chris and Tim Stamper cofounded Rare with company president Joel Hochberg. The pair stuck with the company from its days developing Nintendo Entertainment System games like R.C. Pro Am and Wizards & Warriors through its rise to prominence with the hit Nintendo 64 shooter GoldenEye and its eventual sale to Microsoft, which has so far yielded efforts like Perfect Dark Zero and Viva Pinata.

The Stampers' time at Rare is over, as Microsoft today confirmed a 1Up News report that the brothers have parted ways with the developer to pursue other opportunities. The publisher thanked the pair for their contributions to the studio and wished them luck in their future endeavors.

As for who will spearhead the company's development going forward, Microsoft is promoting from within. Mark Betteridge, a Rare employee of 19 years, will serve as Rare's studio director, while Gregg Mayles, "the creative force" behind Donkey Kong Country and Viva Piñata, among other titles, has been named Rare's creative director. Mayles will be responsible for overseeing all of the company's development as well as the creation of new intellectual properties.

Rare's next project is a new installment in its 3D platformer franchise Banjo Kazooie. Set for release on the Xbox 360, the game was originally announced at Microsoft's X06 press conference.

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244 comments
Ice-Menorah
Ice-Menorah

i was so exited when i first heard about the game like 2 years ago. This just isnt banjo kazooie. I mean really couldnt rare have just made up some new characters that use vehicles. every1 wouldve been happy, but this game has just taken everyones favourite bear and bird duo and turned them into something almost completely irrelevant to the 64 games. i guess it is unfair of us to attack rare about this game though. i mean after all no xbox game is ever gonna be better then the n64 rare game, take conker games for an example....

robcox1980
robcox1980

DEAR Banjo Fans. Let's move this over to www.RAREWARE.com Let's see if we can't wake a couple CEO's up over there. Remember when PS3 was going to have the crazy looking boomerang controller? Enough people complained and that problem got solved. Cross your fingers, go to www.RAREWARE.com and start speaking your minds. Let's get back our Banjo series! One of, if not, the best platformer series.

robcox1980
robcox1980

HUGELY DISAPPOINTED. The ONLY transportation Banjo needs is Kazooie's ultra fit wings. NOW we're stuck with some 2nd rate racer that would have ZERO chance of success if it were'nt riding on the back of the Banjo-Kazooie name. STRAIGHT CRAP! This absolutely sucks. So everyone, remember the first teaser trailer? RARE made us think it was Banjo 3 for the past 2 years. Now we are slapped square in the face with what they should just call Banjo-Pilot 2. This sucks. Absolutely sucks. HEY RARE, you ever hear of Mario Galaxy? Yeah, that is called nexgen platforming. That's what the new Banjo game should be. I'm not usually one to count chickens before they hatch, but this game is going to pale in to comparison to anything RARE could have done if they stuck to a true platformer. STUPID. Absolutely horribly stupid. What happened? Why did it take this long to make a friggin racer? For one, I am extremely upset. RARE, GIVE US BANJO-THREEIE! RARE, look at the numbers: Banjo-Kazooie Gamespot Score - 9.5 Banjo-Tooie Gamespot Score - 9.6 Banjo-Pilot (a not well known Banjo game) Gamespot Score - 7.2 Ok, are you ready RARE? Here's my prediction of the future. Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts (RARE should just call it Banjo-Pilot 2) Gamespot Score? - 7.5 Now here's what a majority of gamers wanted. Banjo-Threeie Gamespot Score - 9.5 This is how you can tell the brothers who formed RARE left the company. Obviously they wanted nothing to do with the way things are going. Sucks they couldn't have taken Banjo with them.

Qwoazy1
Qwoazy1

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Qwoazy1
Qwoazy1

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Qwoazy1
Qwoazy1

Rare just needs to release the 007s on the virtual console. Everyone will buy them. I know I will. Banjo and Conker were great games.

slintpong
slintpong

I can't wait till Banjo 3 comes out. I loved the first 2 games, and I'm sure I will love this one too.

eespo93
eespo93

You're right, they are my favorites such as Conker and Banjo

GspotDeluxer
GspotDeluxer

rare owned most of the n64 games. they made orginal great games

emerald101
emerald101

Rare has always made good games. And if u havent noticed all Rare games made on the xbox 360 have the best visuals out of most games.

dragonbattousai
dragonbattousai

I hope this will not destroy how Banjo-Kazooie played or anything. It sounds good that one of the people taking over worked on DKC, so here is hoping for RARE to make a comeback.

sjvferris
sjvferris

To me, it's all about the games. I loved Banjo on the n64. I'm sure I will love it on my 360. I plan on buying a Wii as soon as they are on shelves......and it's may and you still can't get them. I am looking forward to banjo on my 360, I'm tired of playing Kameo, even though that game is awsome! Also, all of my kids love Viva Pinata, my wife likes it, and I do as well. It is a great game. I can't wait for a sequel to that game as well. So, I hope that Rare continues to do well........I mean after all, since I can't get Ratchet and Clank on the ps3...........my only hope is banjo!!

Kyotin
Kyotin

Damn straight Peice. Damn straight.

PeiceofHeart
PeiceofHeart

They leave but Rare is stupid anyway for one reasone only: Leaving Nintendo. Why? Probobly for money. They were doing great with Nintendo (especially Banjo-Kazooie series). Now its coming out for 360! Nintendo kicks Microsoft's butt. They should make it for Wii and I would get it the day it comes out. Now I gotta buy a stupid 360 for this!

TTDog
TTDog

"ReggieNametaker datniccah187, the stamper brothers are the founders of Rare who were originally called 'Ultimate: Play The Game' (no joke on that one...)" No joke, and not strictly correct either.... When they wrote games on the good old Spectrum, Commodore 64 etx, the company name was "Ashby Computer & Graphics Limited", hence picking up the three parts of the A C G key in games like Atic Atac. "Ultimate Play The Game" was just a publishing name which was sold to a huge overbearing publisher named "US GOLD", Ashby Computer and Graphics changed its name to Rare, Ultimate was never anything other than a brand name.

playforpride372
playforpride372

Rare's only hope is to make Banjo Threeie so good, that people want to work for Rare. If they don't, another great video game developement will crumble.

_Sam_
_Sam_

are they still going to be working together?

jacko_goku69
jacko_goku69

Kanharn First Thing first, On my last comment I said Goldeneye on the N64 was a good game. WR_Platinum you really need to read what people post before you comment against it. I can tell from your remark that you are indeed a spastic. I agree WR_Platinum is a spastic

kanharn
kanharn

First Thing first, On my last comment I said Goldeneye on the N64 was a good game. WR_Platinum you really need to read what people post before you comment against it. I can tell from your remark that you are indeed a spastic. To the people who say "play Viva pinata its good". I have and it is a game for kids, anyone over the age of 11 playing this game needs a slap. RARE is dying. it makes no difference that the Stamper Bros are leaving. The bad games still came out while they where at RARE. RARE need a new idea and a new game. It seems Microsoft are using RARE as a means to bring out there medium grade games while they keep all the good ideas for themselfs. I give the company 2yrs at most before it crumbles :(

DO646260
DO646260

*Sheds a tear* I will miss that wily little company!

G_W_X
G_W_X

Adron..you mean Nintendo shouldn't of sold RARE to microsoft? EDIT---OK Nintendo actually sold all its shares in RARE back to RARE, giving them ownership and then RARE sold ITSLEF to microsoft....tsk. http://money.cnn.com/2002/09/20/news/deals/rare/index.htm Well its now official: RARE is dead. Once the heart leaves....the real RARE is no longer. Remember that guy who already left and made his own company...Free Radical...who made Timesplitters 2.... That was one strike....now the ORIGINAL founders leave...its the end of an ERA. RARE as we knew it is now dead. Goldeneye 007, Perfect Dark(the original for N64) That was when RARE was..RARE! Now this RARE that exist is a twisted watered down coporate money figure making games for microsoft. Oh they might make good games, (well I wouldn't know because I wont pick an xbox, EVER) but it won't be the same. Just wont be the same. RAREWare. ;)

shockwave04
shockwave04

And Rare takes another hit hit in the sack.

Andron666
Andron666

Rare should have stayed with Nintendo..

ReggieNametaker
ReggieNametaker

datniccah187, the stamper brothers are the founders of Rare who were originally called 'Ultimate: Play The Game' (no joke on that one...). They originally started in the 80's designing games for home computers like the ZX spectrum and the Commodore 64 until the late 80's when they began to develop for nintendo and sega consoles. The rest is history....

Zacek
Zacek

Good luck to the brothers!

pencilpusher69
pencilpusher69

Raven87 "Unlike most people here, I actually like Rare's more recent games. I think some people are perhaps getting a little to old for there experience with newer titles to live up to their fond memories of old." Sorry, I base my views on all games upon certain criteria. Perfect Dark Zero, for example, had poorly designed levels when compared to the first game. PDZ's levels were frustratingly vague, as you can spend a LOT of time wandering around just trying to figure out where it is you need to go. It's not that it's a bad game, but elements like that just aren't up to the level that they were years ago. I've always believed that it had to do with Nintendo having a very strong hand in the development of the Rare games for their consoles. Many of the key developers leaving, and working on games like Timesplitters, only solidifies my beliefs, because the games that those people have made post Rare, have the elements that made the Rare games they worked on so great. Again, Rare isn't bad now, but they aren't one of the top developers like they used to be.

Pinkyimp
Pinkyimp

"Rare has gone downhill because of Microsoft." not true...ok well somewhat but still its not all ms falt ,the company has been pputting out some lackluster games and there not doing so well so they way i see it is that if they dont put out a good game in 4-5 years they will go bankrupt no doubt

snakenamedjoe
snakenamedjoe

I wonder what the Stamper brothers will be up to next?

nintendanXP
nintendanXP

If we could go back in time... and ask the Stamper brothers one question..... "Who would you rather be owned by.... Nintendo or Microsoft?" They most likely would pick Nintendo. Back in 2001 or so, MS was hated by other businesses and the general public for buying up small INDEPENDENT software companies, forcing them from thier roots. The Stamper brothers wouldnt have chosen Microsoft for another reason: back then, Microsoft wasnt an established game developer yet (for Home Consoles that is). They were still new in the market. And in that time since the buy-out (going on 6 years)... all have been Mediocre games (cept Viva). If they had the choice (and they didnt) it would have been wise to stick with Nintendo.. because they would have access to the Nintendo library of characters.... something that worked for them on the Nintendo 64. Of course, they didnt have this choice.. it wasnt up to them. I'm just saying they MOST LIKELY would have better off under Nintendo's wing. Good luck to the bros. though. I remember seeing thier names scroll by on the end credits after beating Donkey Kong Country all those times in my youth. Dan

PerfectDark0Fan
PerfectDark0Fan

I will miss seeing the Stamper names on the end of Rare games.

ShadowDeathX
ShadowDeathX

Am confused, Is Donkey Kong part of Rare or Nintendo cause all games were made by Rare and published by Nintendo, the thing is that I see DK in the Mario Party games so it looks like Nintendo. Rare was better at Nintendo cause most of Rares games were Nintendo Style and that was nice.

matrixman2k
matrixman2k

i still think rare is one of my top companies. Squaresoft (Square-Enix) is still the first no.1 Still...If Banjo graphics are like the fmv quality of the ps2 as it's on a 360, then theres something to look forward to... We'll see...

Paul_TheGreat
Paul_TheGreat

Rare has gone downhill because of Microsoft.

Raven87
Raven87

Unlike most people here, I actually like Rare's more recent games. I think some people are perhaps getting a little to old for there experience with newer titles to live up to their fond memories of old. This parting seems as though there is no hostility between the 2 parties, so good look to each of them. and maybe we'll see a truly great and innovative title come out of Rare soon.

Philadendron
Philadendron

Well, Simulator_Shock, Ghoulies wasn't that great, but Viva Pinata is getting good reviews, and even though Perfect Dark Zero wasn't that great, it still got decent reviews. Face, it's tough to follow something like Perfect Dark, or Goldeneye. I'm willing to give Rare a few more chances, and also give Pinata a fair shake when I get it from Gamefly in about a week.

PhoenixWright2
PhoenixWright2

Lets hope this doesnt effect how good banjo 360 is.

Simulator_Shock
Simulator_Shock

Thank you PixyMisao for clearing that up for everyone. Nintendo and Rare were both at very bad buisness relationship terms with each other circa 2001 and so when Rares stock was going downhill and Nintendo didnt want to buy them out, M$ saw the oppurtunity and purchased them for $322 million. The rest is pretty obvious when Rare just totally went downhill from there and started releasing very mediocre games like Grabbed by the Ghoulies.

fahad2mail
fahad2mail

That type of game is good. i love it.

PerfectDark0Fan
PerfectDark0Fan

no the sales from the last few games on the N64 had to do with it though the original PD sold over a million copies even though near the PS2 launch.

PixyMisao
PixyMisao

"HyperMetaDragon EVERYBODY, STOP ACTING IGNORANT. MICROSOFT ISN'T THE ONE TO BLAME. Nintendo SOLD OUT Rare to Microsoft. They GAVE it to them. BLAME NINTENDO." Not exactly, they just didn't pick up their stock options. M$ was quick to buy Rare out and Nintendo just said "whatever". Considering the developer had declining sales with every game, how mediocre the games were getting, (and still are) I think Nintendo made the right choice. Rare's best days were on the N64... now they're just a washed-up studio wasting talented renderers.

Phazevariance
Phazevariance

Speaking of Killer Instinct, I think t would be amazing if they made a new one in HD with all that fast action and super combos... best fighting game ever made was KI2.

aashkii
aashkii

"Microsoft have officially killed Rare. Also, I hope they go back to working with Nintendo." I don't think that'll happen, but you never know.

PerfectDark0Fan
PerfectDark0Fan

RIght on it was Nintendos fault. I enjoyed Grabbed By The Ghoulies.

HyperMetaDragon
HyperMetaDragon

EVERYBODY, STOP ACTING IGNORANT. MICROSOFT ISN'T THE ONE TO BLAME. Nintendo SOLD OUT Rare to Microsoft. They GAVE it to them. BLAME NINTENDO.

Poodishplayer
Poodishplayer

Ahhhhh! thats bull. Banjo and Kazooie have always been on Nintendo Stations, and now they move to the XBox 360! Damn you microsoft! I will never forgive, but probably end up buying your system now! Hope Nintendo beats you in the end, and heres to the very small hope that Banjo and Kazooie might make it onto Super Smash Bros. Brawl!

Ima_Grey
Ima_Grey

It does seem that it;s been a long time since Rare has publish a good game that isn't kid oriented. It's too bad, because they have a lot of potential! and chrisdojo, when you say: "i want the next banjo kazooie!!!! (but not an x360)"... good luck with that as MS owns Rare who in turn owns the BK rights.