As the Xbox 360 turns 10 years old this Sunday, 22nd November 2015, so do the console's launch titles. Among them: Rare's Kameo: Elements of Power.
Kameo: Elements of Power didn't just help kick off the current console generation, it played a role in the early days of one of its more interesting - and divisive - trends, too. Shortly after the Xbox 360 came out in December 2005, I went over to my friend - and handy early adopter - Stu's house to see what the new hardware could do. Stu was playing Kameo, which looked colourful and pleasant and busy with particle effects, but there was something else taking place on the screen that seemed completely weird. As Christmas inched closer in the real world, Christmas was inching closer in Kameo, as well: all the elves and pixies, grunts and lumbering yeti-type things the protagonist could transform into were decked out in scarlet pom-pom hats and little red and white ruffs. Santa Claus had come to toy town.
Every Sunday we present an article from our archive - giving you a chance to discover something for the first time, or maybe just to get reacquainted. This week, with the Conker-starring Project Spark finally releasing, we go back to Wes' interview with the man behind Rare's foul-mouthed mascot.
Through a locked gate, down a winding path and by a still pond a few miles outside of the leafy village of Twycross, England, a bonsai tree stands. It was a gift given to Rare by Shigeru Miyamoto, the most famous game designer in the world, as a thank-you for the game developer's critical and commercial success in creating games for Nintendo, the most famous game maker in the world.
Those onetime Britsoft gods at Rare have had a bit of a rough ride from the press in the last few years, and with some justification. Since Microsoft signed a gobsmackingly large cheque to add the studio to its internal development repertoire back in 2002, it hasn't exactly justified its price tag - producing only the fun but not exactly world-igniting Grabbed by the Ghoulies, and the forthcoming, foul-mouthed, Conker: Live & Reloaded. In what must be a bit of an embarrassment for Microsoft, if you wanted to play a really good Rare game in the last few years, the best place to do it was on Game Boy Advance.