Peter Moore On Rare: "Skills Not Applicable Today"

Former Microsoft, current EA Sports exec Peter Moore continues to pull no punches in a series of interviews he's done with Guardian's Games Blog. This time around, he explains how not everyone at Microsoft loves being in the console business ("There was a vocal minority that disagreed with videogames as a cultural phenomenon") and dishes on why Microsoft killed the original Xbox ("The hard drive in every Xbox killed us"). But Moore get honest, brutally honest, about Rare. Back in 2002, Microsoft acquired a controlling interest in the company. According to Moore:

I thought ultimately it would be very successful — and you know, Microsoft, we'd had a tough time getting Rare back — Perfect Dark Zero was a launch title and didn't do as well as Perfect Dark...but we were trying all kinds of classic Rare stuff and unfortunately I think the industry had past Rare by — it's a strong statement but what they were good at, new consumers didn't care about anymore, and it was tough because they were trying very hard — Chris and Tim Stamper were still there — to try and recreate the glory years of Rare, which is the reason Microsoft paid a lot of money for them and I spent a lot of time getting on a train to Twycross to meet them. Great people. But their skillsets were from a different time and a different place and were not applicable in today's market.


This honesty from Peter Moore is refreshing and illuminating. But these Rare remarks must really sting. That is, if you're Rare. If not, well. Peter Moore Interview: Part Three [Games Blog]

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I can tell you why Perfect Dark Zero didn't do as well as GoldenEye or Perfect Dark. It's because a bunch of the original developers left and started Free Radical Design to make TimeSplitters. Just because you own the franchise does not mean you can repeat your success with a different mix of developers.