Banjo-Karting (also known as The Fast and The Furriest, as it was called in RareReplay’s unlockable video, even if it was the name of an older Rare prototype) was a game prototype for Xbox 360, started by Rare Ltd. just before Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts was finished in late 2008. The prototype took advantage of classic Banjo-Kazooie characters and built upon the racing parts of Nuts and Bolts. With Rare’s shift to Kinect projects only, this prototype was cancelled.
One of the cars created specifically for this prototype later made it into the Xbox 360 version of Sonic & Sega Allstar Racing.
SoulCatcher is a cancelled game that was in development by Rare LTD for the Xbox 360. The project was meant to be a prototype for a fantasy action adventure game in first person view, that used the Xbox Vision Camera and a customized proto-wand for motion-controls to attack and do magics. At Develop 2011 in Brighton, Rare’s Nick Burton shown a video of this game, but sadly it seems that none recorded it. If you know someone that participated at the event and was able to take some photos / videos of SoulCatcher, please let us know!
Banjo-Kazoomie was a prototype for the original Xbox which was started at Rare Ltd. in 2004. Players were able to construct their karts out of different parts, therefore after it was cancelled the concept may have evolved into Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts, which was released on Xbox 360 four years later.
Brendan Gunn about this project:
“I’ve always wanted to do a racing game. I got to spend two weeks working on a prototype racing game for the Xbox. It was codenamed ‘Banjo-Kazoomie’, and it was a kind of kart racer, but you constructed the karts out of different parts, so I guess it was kind of a precursor to ‘Nuts & Bolts’. But for those two weeks I was doing the driving mechanics for it”
Cascade was an unreleased fantasy Massive Multiplater Online game in production at British software house Rare Ltd. The project started after Perfect Dark Zero by Mark Edmonds and Chris Tilston, it built upon early work from a post-Perfect Dark 64 prototype titled Quest. In 2007, Cascade was cancelled and the team started to work on an unreleased HD port of their N64 classic GoldenEye foy XBLA.
Jeton Grajqevci from Pure Rarity was able to talk to Mark Edmonds about this project:
He [Mark Edmonds] said Quest was a side project as MMOs are a big interest of his. It supposedly went through several variations and names over the years. No finished game ever came from it but it did lead to the networking code that was used in Conker: Live & Reloaded and Perfect Dark Zero. He also gave me a detailed timeline of the MMO:
Quest started around 2000 after Perfect Dark N64 as a mixed fantasy MMO. One name it had for a while was Elements of 3 Powers but it wasn’t related to Kameo (the other team probably took over the name when it was abandoned). Around 2001 Quest was a space shooter for the Gamecube and in 2002 it was converted to the Xbox and shortly thereafter put on hold. After Perfect Dark Zero a fantasy MMO version came back, this time titled Cascade. It was however cancelled in 2007 when the team did GoldenEye 007 for the XBLA instead. As you all know, the latter was finished but never released.
The awesome people at Rare Ware Central have shared a Banjo Kazooie: Grunty’s Revenge Debug and a Diddy Kong Pilot (that was later released as Banjo Pilot). You can download these 2 unseen games at Rare Ware Central beta page! It’s always nice to see Rare beta games publicly preserved, as they are one of the teams with the most interesting beta / cancelled games.