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Microsoft execs thought they owned Donkey Kong after Rare purchase

Chris Seavor relays a funny story about one Microsoft executive who thought they owned Donkey Kong after buying Rare.

Donkey Kong Country Returns

Chris Seavor recently revealed that a Microsoft executive believed the company owned Donkey Kong after Microsoft bought Rare in 2002. In an interview, Seavor was asked what the Xbox One equivalent of the PlayStation 4 game Knack would be. Seavor then relayed the tale of how a Microsoft executive believed its purchase of Rare netted the company the Donkey Kong IP as well.

The current generation of ‘enablers’ won’t even know they own the IP… Here’s a true story.. When Rare was first bought by MS a group of execs came on a tour.. One of them noticed the Donkey Kong. ..Posters everywhere and said.. ‘Hey that’s great.. We own Donkey Kong right??’

This is an absolutely hilarious look at how executives manage businesses they’re not even aware of and how intellectual property works. Perhaps this is another clue in the puzzle of why Microsoft has turned Rare from the once proud studio that it was into a Kinect Sports churn factory.

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  • THCaleb

    I wish Retro would’ve done a 3d ”64 style” DK for Wii u.

    • http://about.me/overlordror Ashley King

      Honestly the Wii U does need a good 3D game that’s open like this. So far, everything that has been released has been 3D in a 2D setting. Mario Galaxy 3 might have been a better choice than Super Mario 3D World.

      • Joshua Brodie

        Galaxy was never open world enough for me. I want to see a big massive worlds to explore like (insert Nintendo IP Here) “64″. I miss the days when it seemed like most Nintendo games had huge worlds.

        • NintendoNoob

          Donkey Kong 64, Conkers Bad Fur Day, Banjo Kazooie… Sigh, I miss the old Rare D’:

      • Scott Duperree

        If Wii U sales take off, 3D World will make more money than 2 Galaxy games.

        • http://about.me/overlordror Ashley King

          That may be true, but right now Nintendo needs a game to drive Wii U sales, not a game that will sell well to Wii U owners. I don’t think 3D World is that game.

          Now its up to Smash Bros. and Mario Kart 8.

          • thedeciderU

            let’s see what they announce and release before 2014. hopefully they’ve got a plan.

          • Christopher Acuna

            Wind Waker HD! Lot’s O Folk missed out on that gem during the gamecube day’s.

          • Héctor I. Rivera Negrón

            TLoZ Windwaker HD it’s a first day purchase for me. I’m one of those people who missed it on the GameCube along with Mario Sunshine and Luigi’s Mansion. I recently bought a 3DS so at least for now can play Dark Moon waiting for GameCube games on the Wii U Virtual Console.

          • Graeme Lynch

            I don’t get the fascination with Wind Waker. It was the worst Zelda game in my opinion. Not worthy of a remake. I can’t help but feel Nintendo has run out of ideas or are just being lazy and relying on old IPs to sell their consoles. I guess we will see just exactly how well a 10 year old game can sell a console to people that have either already played the game or have no interest in that type of Zelda game.

          • Jasmyn Wilson

            You must be new. Aonuma already stated that Wind Waker HD is for the Zelda Team to get used to the WiiU hardware. Also to hold Zelda fans over until they can show off the new WiiU Zelda.

          • palomino blue

            I think Kart will sell the most consoles. That franchise transcends Nintendo fans more than any other IP. Kart for wii sold half again what Brawl did. I’m buying a Wii U for both of them though.

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            I’ll take that over 3D World.

          • Arthur Jarret

            So… You’re saying now it’s up to the sequel to the best selling gamecube game and the sequel to the best selling wii game (not counting the bundled wii sports).

            I don’t see any problem here… ;)

          • Ducked

            I disagree. Super Mario 3D World just adds to the amazing multiplayer collection of games that the Wii U has to offer. Were get that open 3D world Mario game on the Wii U in 1-2 years anyways.

            Super Mario 3D World looks extremely fun, that boosts sales…

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            Also, 3D World to be honest doesn’t even look close to what the Galaxy games brought out in terms of visual quality. Pretty much appears downscaled in other words.

            I do agree that it won’t sell that much.Even Smash Bros Brawl sold more than either Galaxy game.

          • disqus_sgtob6da3X

            Actually that wrong. SMG did outsold Brawl. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_Wii_video_games

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            Wikipedia is a bad source as it’s open for anyone to edit. Here’s a better source:http://www.vgchartz.com/gamedb/?name=super+smash+bros.+brawl and also http://www.vgchartz.com/gamedb/?name=super+mario+galaxy

            That should clear things up. While both Galaxy games combined outsold Brawl, then didn’t separately. VGChartz is legit. Wikipedia is good for info on most things but they don’t keep up with sales charts.

          • disqus_sgtob6da3X

            http://www.ranker.com/list/the-best-selling-wii-games/r20x

            But anyway, as it shows that both are tied in or are close to each other so either game would make system sellers. But it seems that Like Mario kart 7, Mario kart 8 will be the next system seller as it always top selling better than SMG or Smash.

          • Tobias Naustdal

            i would also like to point out that nintendo is currently focusing a lot of resources on the new zelda game.

            they just said that they have never spent so much money on developing a game before, and now have a very big group working on it!

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            I don’t think it takes its all their development studios to develop just one game, regardless of costs. If it’s that short-handed, perhaps they should do what most developers do when they’re short of people, “hire more help.” That way, development times are reduced and releases are sooner than later. Time is against any developer, you find solutions to the problem, not act like it doesn’t exist.

          • Guest

            I dont know. When i was at E3 many ppl that i was with loved 3D World and would buy a Wii U for it. I’m for one am personality getting a wii U for it to support it and Nintendo. I think more than anything Only Super smash bros will be the system seller, cause that what many ppl are saying i had ask or been friends with. ”I’m only getting the Wii U for Smash. Nothing else…” So i dont think even a galaxy game would had sold systems. Maybe a little but not many.

          • HypocritesRROD

            3D World is Nintendo’s holiday 2013 game. There’s a reason why this is a December release game. Are you sure this game won’t sell well to Wii U owners?

          • Graeme Lynch

            How about the fact that there is more or less bugger all games being released!? It is people like you on here that frustrate me to no end. If 3D World is the best Nintendo can come up with 1 year after the console release then it is simply ridiculous.
            The Christmas period is always the time when the big sellers come out to push people to buy the console. 3D World is not that game.

          • disqus_sgtob6da3X

            It could be. You’ll never now till it comes out. I’m pretty sure it will be fine just like SMBW. I heard many ppl r picking it up and can’t wait to play it. Plus it not just that game coming out. Nintendo already announced it faults and are trying to fix it. It would be a good gift this holiday system and wait while newer titles coming out. Maybe ppl will pick up other titles like WW and pikimin etc.

          • Graeme Lynch

            All I can say is I expect more from Nintendo…

          • Guest

            I dont know. When i was at E3 many ppl that i was with loved 3D World and would buy a Wii U for it. I’m for one am personality getting a wii U for it to support it and Nintendo. I think more than anything Only Super smash bros and Mk8 will be the system seller, cause that what many ppl are saying i had ask or been friends with. ”I’m only getting the Wii U for Smash and Mario kart 8.”

      • Justin Jefferson

        um lego undercover? Assassins creed? Nintendo land?

        • SilverDrake20

          No offense dude but Nintendo Land comes bundled with the Deluxe and I doubt that is a system seller. I heard Lego Undercover was good but that wouldn’t move new units. And Assassin’s Creed is a multi-platform game…I’m probably getting a Wii U when Mario Kart 8 comes out because by then there will be a decent line up of titles but I hope we hear about more games for 2014 soon.

      • Rainbow Dashing

        I was looking forward to a galaxy 3 :/

      • Eric

        Personally, I have always wanted a Mario title that brought in the best of both gameplay styles: bigger worlds to explore in a classic Mario format. 3D Land did that well, and I think 3D world (god-awful name aside) will be similar, though on a larger scale. If it had launched in place of New Super Mario Bros. U I would have adopted a Wii U much sooner myself.

        Though I have no freaking clue why multiplayer is being restricted to local only. Nintendo needs to stop doing that. That is really dumb… unless I’m mistaken about that.

      • HypocritesRROD

        Hypocrites will continue to say they’re disappointed about Super Mario 3D World. Yet, when this game comes out, they will all be playing & enjoying it secretely.

        Hypocrites
        RROD

        • Daniel Gonzalez

          Or they might not play it at all. Don’t act like people can’t resist Nintendo. Speaking as a NIntendo gamer, I sure can, and it’s easy.It’s one thing to be a Nintendo fan, but its another story when someone acts like everyone has some kinda wet dream over Nintendo. Your name describes you real well.

          • HypocritesRROD

            Another delusional loser. Did i say “people can’t resist Nintendo? Did i?

        • The True Gamer

          I was disappointed by 3D Land, so I won’t be playing 3D World. Not everybody is obsessed with Nintendo

          • HypocritesRROD

            Yeah, like i said anything about “everybody is obsessed with Nintendo”. You are delusional.

          • The True Gamer

            No. You assumed that all people who like Nintendo like 3D Land, and if they didn’t like 3D Land, they probably won’t like 3D World

          • HypocritesRROD

            You are the one who is assuming things. Did i mention anything about Mario 3D Land? Read my comment again.

    • https://twitter.com/Onyzora Ony

      First: Metroid, then Retro can do whatever they want :<

      • sdmac200600

        We just had 3 Metroids. They can chill on Metroid for a bit. They can do something else first the give us a Metroid.

        • Christopher Acuna

          WHAT!? Metroid HD man! Metroid Prime looked fantastic and that was on the Gamecube, imagine it in full 1080p Glory! I would tear up from the greatness.

          • The True Gamer

            HD remakes are nice, but a new game will always look better than a HD remake. Halo CE Anniversary was the game that shows that the most.

          • Arthur Jarret

            I had Halo in HD long before the remake… PC ftw!

          • Christopher Acuna

            I’m not talking about remaking an old Metroid Game into HD, I’m talking just Metroid in HD now! lol

          • The True Gamer

            Oh….sorry. That would be cool.

        • mikel334u2

          MP1 – 2001, MP2 – 2004, MP3 – 2007, Other M – 2010; so the next one should have been this year. I don’t think “just” means “in the last decade”, and it’s been a while since a true 1st person Metroid game was released. How patient must you be if you can wait 7+ years for a good game from a franchise you love?

          • sdmac200600

            Ok last metroid prime game 3 years years ago versus something they should be working on (Starfox or F-Zero) that hasn’t seen a release in close to if not a decade. 3 years is “just.”

          • mikel334u2

            well, 6 years since other m wasn’t metroid prime; i agree that they should work on those titles, but Retro has only ever developed 2 Nintendo franchises: Metroid Prime and DKC (new).

          • sdmac200600

            Lol oops didn’t mean to put Prime :P but according to your timeline, Other M came out 3 years ago, not 6. While Retro has only worked on 2 franchises, I would have assumed the main point of having Retro was to bring back Nintendo’s retro franchises.

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            Or it was just a coincidence, but you could be right.

        • Josiah Parsons

          Nintendo really needs a good 1st party fps.

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            True. Metroid isn’t enough. A few new fps games would say would reel in some hardcore gamers from Sony and Microsoft if said games give them plenty go eat up. I’m not a big fan of DLC, but it’s the norm with video games right now and Nintendo should try to bring more of it to their games.

          • Josiah Parsons

            Plenty of games could use dlc. MarioKart and SSB is particular.

          • Daniel Gonzalez

            True story.

    • Scott Duperree

      It would have been nice, but this may have been the best decision for now. Retro was primed to churn out a quick DKC game, and Wii U needed games quick. Anything else we would have had to wait for.

  • Batcave Blogger

    This would absolutely explain why they went “balls out” to steal Rare out from under Nintendo at the time. Well, goes to show Rare wasnt the gem after all, it was Nintendo that did all of the heavy lifting.

    I remember reading an article back then where Miyamoto was not happy with the progress in the Original DKC and he went in and add a bunch of little “Nintendo Quirks” to polish the game.

    • sdmac200600

      Idk it seems like them seeing that poster was the first time they seen Rare with DK if they thought Rare owned DK which is just a fail.

  • https://twitter.com/Onyzora Ony

    :banana facepalm:

  • The Clockwork Being

    Microsoft should have made a game called DK 360. They would gotten sued so hard it wouldnt even be funny

    • Krypton Keeper

      Like King Kong 360 3D at Universal?

  • The Clockwork Being

    Microsoft only now cares about shooting / killing games, and their letting many good franchise games to just rot and die.

    For example
    1. Banjo kazooie

    2. Grabbed by the ghoulies

    3. Kameo

    4. Conker

    5.Viva Piñata

    6. Mechassault

    7. Crimson sky’s

    Donkey Kong would have been on this list, if Microsoft would have gotten the rights for DK.

    • sdmac200600

      They wouldn’t have gotten the rights to it because DK is a Nintendo made character IP. Not a Rare made character IP

      • The Clockwork Being

        No i know that im just saying if they ever have gotten DK in some way they would have just let the series die.

    • The True Gamer

      They have Forza, Zoo Tycoon, Fable and Geometry Wars, and the only “shooting game” they own is Halo.

    • Scott Duperree

      They stopped a great studio from making great games, too bad.

  • Abcgamer

    When do we find out what the Club Nintendo gold and platinum rewards are?

    • Lusunup

      I just was looking that up buts its kinda off topic here.

    • The True Gamer

      I’m pretty sure last year it took Nintendo a few days to announce the prizes after July 1st.

  • Jack5221

    I wish Microshaft never got Rare. Its a shame they killed Banjo Kazooie and turned it into a crappy Kinect games studios. I’ve tried one of those Kinects out before at Best Buy and I can honestly say its terrible.

  • Archiq09

    Ms kill games old games … Donkey Kong will dead T-T

    • Tim van Broekhoven

      Ok

    • Krypton Keeper

      They would turn it into a kart builder or sports game.

  • Scott Duperree

    One of the saddest moments in Nintendo history, failing to purchase Rare. Having Retro helps, but they don’t fully replace what Rare brought to the table. Microsoft didn’t even know what they were buying.

  • Joshua Carver

    Silly Microsoft, DK is for Nintendo. Just ask their army of death lawyers.

  • $41809923

    who has jet force game will we see a jet force game on the wii u?
    i would love to see a jet force game on the wii u

    • ICHI

      No thats a rare ware ip, like conker and perfect dark. It was a good game better than the bloody star fox one they did anyway lol.

  • bizzy gie

    Microsoft probably would have put a gun in DK’s hand to make it a first person shooter and gave him the ability speak soley for the reason of using profanity.

    • Jasmyn Wilson

      Diddy has a gun. :P

      • bizzy gie

        P Diddy?!?!?!

    • 00EpicGamer00

      Umm….TECHNICALLY Donkey Kong HAD a gun and spoke (through text) in Donkey Kong 64. But I know what you mean.

  • Nintyfan

    It’s hilarious how clueless these Microsoft execs can be sometimes. Lol

  • Super Buu

    Were they sleeping when Dk Konga, DKC Returns and DK Racing DS came out?

    • willweinert

      This happened more than 10 years ago.

  • Noel Canales

    We need a new Perfect Dark WiiU made by Rare, oh no Micrsoft owns it and already made a sequal that bombed.

  • Lil J Moore

    LMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Rainbow Dashing

    Knowing Microsoft, they probably think they own the letter “x”

  • Guest

    They’d probably turn it into a shooter…. :)

    • Krypton Keeper

      It would be like the King Kong game.

    • The True Gamer

      Microsoft has this stereotype of being a company that only makes shooters. This is incorrect. The only franchise Microsoft develops that is a shooter is Halo. Gears of War is owned by Epic. Check your facts before using incorrect stereotypes on a company you obviously know nothing about.

  • Ducked

    Microsoft also thought they made a gaming console.

    True story

  • Brandon Gardner

    Nintendo should have kept Rare in the first place

    • Luffy

      they would have, if they could have. But they had 49% of rare and Microsoft bought the remaining 51% from rare. Nintendo got screwed big time and they had no choice but to sell there parts.

  • Richard Collard

    What about the DKC trilogy on the virtual console? It was on the virtual console for over 5 years, and then Nintendo de-listed the 3 classics for no apparent reason when the Wii U came out in 2012. Will those games ever be back? I hope so.

  • Dez

    /facepalm

    This is the crap I am talking about. The gaming industry’s integrity is being run into the ground thanks to greedy large corporations and consumers too lazy or ignorant to put their foot down. How I mourn the disaster this modern age has become.

    • The True Gamer

      Large corporations? Yes. Consumers? No. Just because some Microsoft employees are ignorant doesn’t mean gamers should have to stop playing Microsoft games because it may seem like advocating their ignorance.

  • https://www.facebook.com/BlueLightningTechnicalServices Bob Wilkerson

    Now that’s funny… Like a game company licensing out characters to a third party developer is a new thing… That Microsoft executive should have been let go on the grounds of being stupid

  • Elitepwnsface

    I thought Nintendo owned Banjo for a while. Till the game came out on Xbox arcade….

  • Krypton Keeper

    Really? I thought Microsoft bought Rare to make the Xbox brand more broad to differentiate themselves from sports and shooters. LOOK HOW THAT FUCKING TURNED OUT.

    • The True Gamer

      Microsoft only ones one shooter franchise. Halo. Gears of war is owned by Epic Games.

  • iceazeama

    thats just another thing they would have shit on. ooops looks like we ruined another franchises. hey!!!!! lets just ruin halo too!!!!!

  • Starfoxguy

    Ha lol. I first read this on DidYouKnowGaming.com

  • Your money

    Ha, Microsoft thinks that they own donkey kong? They are far from being worthy to own it. They already f***** up banjo, so let them not f*** up donkey kong too.

  • 7Down

    Thank god they don’t own Donkey Kong, they shouldn’t even own Killer Instinct, just look what they’re doing at it now that they finally bother to start the project. I’m not saying that it won’t be good, but so far the graphical design and these updated appearances don’t look good to me, I was hoping to get a nostalgia blast, but now it’s an Xbone exclusive.

    • The True Gamer

      XBONE was a name invented because if DRM policies. Now that it was reversed, the name is Xbox 180. Don’t say XBONE. It makes your points seem less valid.

      • 7Down

        Haven’t been following news too much lately so I guess I’ve got old information, I still kinda like to call it Xbone, because MS is just being an ass.

        That’s right, I’ve got Windows 8 on my computer, it’s a messy PoS.

        • The True Gamer

          Microsoft is evil, but I don’t got Windows 8. I have a Mac. Sure, lots of people hate Mac, but I thinks it’d good enough

          • 7Down

            You know what Windows 8 did? First time in my life, I couldn’t find the option to switch my computer off, it’s so retarded, it’s not user friendly at all, there are some stupid pop ups, move your mouse cursor into a corner and some side bar jumps out of nowhere

          • The True Gamer

            I know people with Windows 8, and they aren’t too happy with it. It’s too bad. The world needs a good Windows operating system. Macs can’t download nearly anything

          • 7Down

            Imo, we’re going backwards with technology in these days, Windows 8 is a perfect example, it’s getting harder to use, the 7 was alright though, but this is like some bad BETA testing thingy =/

  • TheGreatGamer2000

    Microsoft should own Donkey Kong! They would do so much better than stupid Nintendo!

    • The True Gamer

      Yes. Stupid Nintendo with their Mario and their pokemon. Pikachu? Don’t make me laugh!

      • TheGreatGamer2000

        CALL OF DUTY IS THE BEST YOU CANNOT DENY

        • The True Gamer

          Okay, but seriously. Games are art. They should be respected, while you’re entitled to your opinion, you need to accept that their are some games that other people actually enjoy more. Sorry.

          • TheGreatGamer2000

            HA HA. YOU MAKE ME LAUGH. Call of Dity is the best because it has multiplayer! LEGEND OF ZULDA DOESN’T AND THAT MAKES ME WANT TO PUKE IN MY MOUTH! I can’t believe people want to even play that!

          • The True Gamer

            Okay, I don’t really like Zelda games, but multiplayer doesn’t make a game good. Have you played Fallout 3? ApThat doesn’t have multiplayer and its great. You see, to be trolling. So, just accept it so nobody keeps arguing with you,

          • john

            …why are you even replying to this guy?

          • The True Gamer

            He’s a troll and it entertains me. Sure it’s an act, but its fun nonetheless

  • 210stuna

    Going to college doesn’t guarantee dollars.

    I know of some millionaire dropouts, and homeless scholars.

  • https://www.facebook.com/BlueLightningTechnicalServices Bob Wilkerson

    Maybe it’s your attitude you give off because you come off as a cocky know it all that really does not know shit… I guess that is why when I went to switch employers I applied for 2 jobs and went on one interview on a Friday and was offered the job on the Monday after.

  • Downvote&CoEmployee5

    im gay btw ;D

  • Chris Heskin

    Bob: over 9000
    Troll: 0

  • https://www.facebook.com/BlueLightningTechnicalServices Bob Wilkerson

    De-nile is not only a river in Egypt.

  • Downvote&CoEmployee5

    I’m sorry for not having sufficient evidence for this statement