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Thread: Did Rare's character designs suck?

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    Default Did Rare's character designs suck?

    I've noticed that Gamespy rarely misses an opportunity to dump on Rare's character designs, specifically the likes of Banjo and Conker and Diddy Kong. Certainly, their look is distinctive, but I never not of it as particularly abhorrent. It fared a little bit better than Nintendo's old idea of Donkey Kong Junior, I thought.

    What do you think?
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    I personaly liked Rare's games and character models. Really though I think since I liked their games so much I really could have cared less if the character models were bad.

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    i guess if they equate suck with 'not japanese/anime' then yes, rare character design does suck.

    i dont see anything wrong with being different

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    I'll have to disagree, seeing as how I think Banjo...and I guess Kazooie as well, were terrific character designs, in a terrific series of games......even though they played just like SM64....
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    I can only say this:

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    The original Donkey Kong Country had great character design. They were among the first characters I can remember designed with 3D wire frames.

    Conker is recognizable anywhere. He's another great character.

    If you want to talk about uninspired character design, I think of Jak. I didn't even want to get the first Jak & Daxter game, because I thought Jak looked like a boring, cliche game hero. Fortunately, someone got me the game, and I ended up enjoying it, but Jak himself still looks stupid.

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    You should see some of the ones from the games they DID NOT release. Mr. Bloopy? And another one with a rat! I'll go to the other computer and put them on here...

    http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i2...R/PDC_1627.jpg

    http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i2...R/PDC_1626.jpg

    http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i2...R/PDC_1623.jpg
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    Meatwad got his own videogame??

    Oh, and I don't really have any problems with their character designs. I'm mainly about gameplay, story, controls and how the graphics might have pushed the system, but I like simple too. As a fan of the SM64 game, Banjo and Conker were also games that fell into my realm of great platforming on the N64. Of course that's my opinion and have seen how much some people on the board hate SM64 and the N64 in general but I like what it offers, and I'm not going to bash the PS because it has its share of great titles. Saturn FTW!
    Last edited by cyberfluxor; 03-08-2007 at 09:30 AM.
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    I think "Mr. Pants" represents something of a low point for them, though on the whole I wouldn't complain.

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    The thing with Rare is that it seems like they tried like hell to cram an over-abundance personality into essentially unimaginative or derivative designs and that really can't work the way truly good character design does. Rare's certainly not the only company who does that sort of thing, but they are a company who has done it repeatedly without fail and in otherwise pretty good games.


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    Personally, I thought the char design in Cobra Triangle was FANTASTIC.

    Other than that, I'm not too impressed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by agbulls View Post
    Personally, I thought the char design in Cobra Triangle was FANTASTIC.
    Agreed, especially the battle against the giant squid.
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    I never thought Rare had bad character designs, but some of the controls were kinda loose. I thought the job they did with most of their N64 titles was very innovative.
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    Would Rare be as successful as they were if their characters were so poorly designed, would sequels be released? Why have they been in the market since the ZX Spectrum days if they were so bad at design!? Why are their early 'Ultimate Play The Game' titles so collectable!?

    Something doesnt add up to the poor character designs here!

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    Don't get where Gamespy is coming from. What makes these particular characters so bad?

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    I love Rare's style.

    Eyes setting on top of rocks and oranges makes me laugh inside everytime I see it.
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    Gamespy is not thinking its like saying the graphics in Katamari Damacy suck. I mean lets be real nobody looks at these games expecting amazing graphics. The whole idea with most of the Rare games is a surreal look.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cauterize View Post
    Would Rare be as successful as they were if their characters were so poorly designed, would sequels be released? Why have they been in the market since the ZX Spectrum days if they were so bad at design!? Why are their early 'Ultimate Play The Game' titles so collectable!?

    Something doesnt add up to the poor character designs here!
    Ah...if only quality could be equated with popularity. What a wonderful world it would be!


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    Being a passionate 64 fan, I would always look forward to "the new Rare game". My friend and I would enjoy visiting different places in the Rare game world, stand in front of every single particularly wacky Rare character, and hop into first person perspective. As was mentioned before, watching a carrot blink with those eyes was great for a laugh. I found Rare's character design to be unique. Each had that special Rare touch that no-one else really ever matched.

    It makes me truly sad that now that Nintendo has given us their most imaginative console ever, we don't get to see what one of Nintendo's most creative past developers would have given us on the Wii. I'd love to one day read that Rare and Microsoft had parted ways, if only to see what might have been.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jdc View Post
    It makes me truly sad that now that Nintendo has given us their most imaginative console ever, we don't get to see what one of Nintendo's most creative past developers would have given us on the Wii. I'd love to one day read that Rare and Microsoft had parted ways, if only to see what might have been.
    The 360 is still getting another Banjo game eventually, isn't it?

    And the way the critics (and not just Gamespy) are panning the touch-screen functionality added to Diddy Kong Racing DS, perhaps Rare is better off not having the Wiimote to work with.
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    I think some of you are missing exactly what "good design" is.

    It's got nothing to do with whether the style is Japanese or not, it's got nothing with what extent the technology is being used (that is, you can have amazing detailed graphics that push a system to the limits and still have poor character design, and you can have very simplistic graphics that have amazing design), and it's got nothing to do with the popularity of games because a game can still be very enjoyable to play even if the character design is awful (however, if you want to get into pure "game design" then it's a different matter). There's not much beyond that that can be said about good design, since it's just an innate aesthetic sense. Having some background in art helps to give you an ability to judge if the design of a piece is harmonious and truly pleasant to view, but even then there's always a strong degree of opinion.

    Personally, I think Rare has done well at times, but they've also had some pretty poor designs. Overall, I'd say they've had more misses than hits. Just looking at the Donkey Kong Country series, I think they gave DK quite a nice makeover, and I don't see anything wrong with Diddy either. However, Dixie is just ridiculous looking, and Kiddy makes me want to barf. Most of the side characters didn't fare too well, either. Don't even get me started on the Donkey Kong 64 designs.

    The Battletoads look plain disgusting, as opposed to, say, the Ninja Turtles (I'm ignoring the recent TMNT stuff).

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    Maybe. Then again, I hated Elvis.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cauterize View Post
    Would Rare be as successful as they were if their characters were so poorly designed, would sequels be released? Why have they been in the market since the ZX Spectrum days if they were so bad at design!? Why are their early 'Ultimate Play The Game' titles so collectable!?

    Something doesnt add up to the poor character designs here!
    UptG, all the games sucked on C-64, they just couldn't program the C-64. Spectrum owners had to put up with UptG, because didn't have anything better on Speccy.
    Collectable? Brits are silly to pay loads of money for it on ebay.
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    The "character" "designs" in Snake Rattle n' Roll were god-awful. Battletoads were okay, as was Joanna Dark, but most of the rest of their characters have been pretty lame. I've always found the characters in Killer Instinct to be stupid. Mr Pants was particularly laughable.
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    My personal opinion on RARE is that they've made great games, great technical and very fun games. But yeah, the characters and story have been largely strange. I loved their racing and game show games on the NES, and KGjr Winning Run on SNES, though characters were irrelevant on those games. Goldeneye was terrific, but their other N64 games didn't appeal to me (donkey kong, conker, banjo), and Perfect Dark was a fun game but one of the most boring stories I have ever experienced. The games looked terrific, but the characters in Donkey/Diddy, Banjo, and Conker were really bizarre and way too cartoony for me.
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