While everyone knows that Microsoft acquired Rare in the early 2000’s, it has now been revealed that a certain other major publisher almost got them instead. Rare had been working with Nintendo exclusively for many years and created many classic IPs, and Activision could have been the one that they moved onto instead of Microsoft.
It was in the early 2000’s when Rare started looking for buyers after Nintendo wasn’t able to give them enough money, and the two biggest bidders were Microsoft and Activision. We all know that Microsoft ended up winning with the highest bid, but they had to put up a fight against Activision to do so.
Xbox co-creator Ed Fries recently spoke with IGN, revealing that they had put in a bid for Rare that was then outbid by Activision. It was looking like they were going to lose out to Activision, but at the last minute they increased their bid and won. He ends by saying “And that was it. Who knows what could have happened with Rare.”
While many are upset at Microsoft acquiring Rare to essentially demote them to developing Kinect games for a while, the company is now working on core games again. They are currently developing Sea of Thieves, which is set to launch for Xbox One and PC next year.