Rare co-founder Tim Stamper has admitted he has no idea why Nintendo ultimately decided against fully acquiring the studio.
Speaking to Develop in a newly published interview, Stamper said that he felt Rare was a good fit to be a first-party developer for Nintendo. But despite having the option, the console giant never took the decision to acquire the famous UK studio.
“I’ve no idea why they didn’t do that,” he said. “I thought we were a good fit.”
Though a deal never materialised with Nintendo, Rare was still keen on securing a partner to help deal with the rising costs of game development.
“The price of software development was going up and up with the platforms, and Rare works really well with a partner,” said Stamper.
“We were looking for someone to help broaden our horizons.”
It was rumoured that there were a number of parties interested in acquiring Rare, a studio that had worked on a raft of hugely popular games such as Perfect Dark, Goldeneye and Conker’s Bad Fur Day. In the end, Microsoft won out and purchased the studio for $375m in 2002 – a record at the time. And Stamper looked back on the period fondly.
“I like Microsoft. They had a great system, and there’s a lot of good people at Microsoft,” he said.
In 2007 however, brothers and co-founders Tim and Chris Stamper left Rare to purse other opportunities. Tim Stamper said the duo needed to take a new direction to produce better games for the future.
“Chris and I needed to take a new direction to produce some better, greater products for the future, and we thought the only way we’d be able to do that was to take a step sideways and pursue a new venture,” he said.
You can read our full interview with Tim Stamper, where he talks about his past, present and future in games, here.