Perfect Dark turned 20 recently, as you’ll know if you read our exhaustive history of the game’s creation. Our good friends over at Eurogamer have done a similar piece, speaking to the people who made this amazing game happen.
One of those people is Steve Malpass, who also shared a rather shocking story from his early days with the company. A word of warning – this isn’t a tale for the squeamish, or for those who have recently consumed food.
It involves a new member of staff, who, in a fit of misguided laddish tomfoolery, desecrated a Rare shirt:
I remember, not long after I started, somebody on testing, he was put into QA, he was from South Wales, and he came in. They used to do the shirts, which devs would wear at shows. Sometimes these would filter down into testing. You’d wear your shirt with pride. One of the lads, one of the testers had this shirt – and this new guy thought it would be hilarious to take this shirt into the toilet and wipe his a*** on it. Literally. So there was this s*** stain on this guy’s T-shirt. He put it back on the desk. The other guy picked it up and smelt it, and went, oh my god! There’s s*** on my shirt! I can’t believe it!
As you can imagine, this jape went down like a lead balloon with Rare’s higher-ups – although some saw the funny side initially:
This filtered down through the company. I remember Mark Betteridge, who was the tech director at the time, he thought this was hilarious. He told Tim Stamper this story while they were having lunch in the staff canteen. And Tim was like, he’s got to go. Get rid of him. It was the idea of, you would take this property that had the Rare logo on it, and wipe your a*** on it. Not only are you new, you’ve only been there a couple of weeks. You are on probation. What’s this guy going to be capable of when he’s not on probation? I remember he got called down to the boardroom and he never came back again. That just put the fear of god into the testing department. It was like, s***. These guys don’t f*** around. Testing was long hours, it was a bit laddish. Late ’90s. People took s*** seriously from that point on.
Every workplace has its odd moments, but we’re not sure wiping our behinds on items of clothing is the way we’d attempt to gain favour at a new place of work. But then again, this is the company that gave us the Great Mighty Poo.