Rare Replay is available for Xbox One, and it’s an outstanding compilation that looks back at one of the best video game developers, Rare Ltd. This collection celebrates the studio’s 30 plus year history with a variety of titles from the 80s to more current Xbox 360 favorites like Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts and the Viva Pinata series. It also includes a number of documentaries that take a look at the history of the company, including never released projects.
There are over 30 games to choose from and much ground to cover. Fortunately, we have a starter’s guide that will help you get the most from this collection, no matter what types of games you enjoy.
Battletoads and Battletoads Arcade
Rare Replay pays loving tribute to the Battletoads, a group of froggy fighters who were introduced in 1989 with the original NES game. Not only can you find that classic in this collection, but also the rare 1994 release, Battletoads Arcade. Yes, at one point, Electronic Arts brought Rash, Zitz and Pimple to mom-and-pop arcades everywhere, and it was a thing of beauty.
The arcade game is much bloodier and features unique moves ranging from power drills to spiked feet; you can also pick up a hammer and wail away on groups of foes. Meanwhile, the NES game features diversity with its many stages, including surfing, riding jet bikes and pounding enemies with devastating moves.
Both of these Battletoads games are worth a try – and definitely bring a friend, because they provide some of the best co-op beat-em-up action around.
Conker’s Bad Fur Day
It’s definitely vulgar and features questionable content (like when the hero pees on his fiery adversaries to put them out), but Conker’s Bad Fur Day is a classic. Originally making its debut on the Nintendo 64, the game features many epic moments that could only come from the likes of Rare, from helping a drunken bee pollenate a sunflower with large breasts (no, seriously) to taking on the Great Mighty Poo.
Part of that is due to the game’s open-world design, where you find solutions to puzzles and additional challenges for Conker simply by looking around. Its humor also goes a long way, though it leans towards mature players. Definitely not for kids.
Although you won’t find Goldeneye in Rare Replay, you’ll receive the next best thing, Blast Corps. In this destructive action game, your job is to clear the path for a slow-moving nuclear truck by any means necessary. That means leveling buildings, freeways and other structures using a variety of construction vehicles, or in this case, destruction vehicles.
The game’s strategy is probably its biggest asset, since you can use a number of tools to clear a path while watching everything crumble. It’s fascinating and deep at the same time, forcing you to consider using something bigger – or perhaps smaller and quicker – to get the job done.
If you’re a fan of unique games, Blast Corps is worth signing up for.
Back in the NES days, Rare produced a number of classics with significant replay value, including the platforming action game Snake Rattle ‘n Roll and both of the RC Pro-Am racing games. However, if we had to recommend one from this era that didn’t have the word Battletoads in it, it’d have to be the boat racing adventure, Cobra Triangle.
This game features a variety of challenges you’ll need to complete in order, such as shutting down enemy ships, destroying large bosses (like a serpent-like dragon) and completing challenges, such as keeping survivors in an enclosed area before they get kidnapped. It’s this level of diversity that makes Cobra Triangle stand out from other games of this type. Plus, shooting stuff with a gunboat never gets old.
Jet Force Gemini
Fans of shooters and platforming action will get a kick out of Jet Force Gemini, a game that originally released for the Nintendo 64 back in the 90’s. Featuring that “Rare touch” that makes everything just click, from the power-ups to the slick presentation, it’s a gem that’s worth rediscovering.
What’s more, Gemini features a trio of unique heroes – the fearless Juno, his agile sister Vela, and their faithful “wardog” Lupus – that players can choose from as they battle the evil Mizar, who’s guiding his army of Drones in an attempt to destroy the world.
Along the way, you’ll also track down Tribals, an important race of beings enslaved by Mizar, while at the same time gunning down his enemy forces and trying to stay in one piece.
With terrific gameplay and, of course, the “Rare touch,” Jet Force Gemini should definitely be bumped up on your playlist.
Rare Replay is available now for Xbox One.