Microsoft's Phil Spencer has told GamesIndustry.biz that Rare is a studio central to the vision and future of the Xbox 360 business.
The executive's statement comes in response to former Xbox boss Peter Moore's comments to The Guardian where he said the studio's skillsets "were from a different time and a different place and were not applicable in today's market."
"Rare is a great studio that continuously delivers high-quality, award-winning titles for the Xbox platform and will continue to do so in the future," stated the newly appointed head of Microsoft Game Studios.
"Rare plays a strategic role in delivering games and platform experiences that will help the Xbox achieve our long-term strategy of expanding the customer base to a mainstream audience."
Spencer praised the studio's recent work on games and the forthcoming avatar system for Xbox Live as proof the UK developer is relevant to the business and the industry as a whole.
"The studio’s current work that includes the recent release of another critically acclaimed installment in the Viva Piñata series, the reinvention of a genre and a franchise with the November release of Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts as well as the avatar system they’re delivering as part of the new Xbox experience not only is indicative of the value they deliver to our business but proof positive to our partners and the industry at large of our commitment to this strategy and the platform’s continued success," said Spencer.