Platforming Precision

When I first touched Rayman Legends roughly a year ago during Australia’s annual EB Games Expo, I was excited yet confused but why? Well first hands on, I really wanted it because of how interesting the title looked. I’ve never been into Rayman before but this got me hooked within the first five to ten minutes. I just couldn’t pull myself into buying a Wii U console just because I found nothing I liked about it but this game. Luckily someone heard my cries and the game was delayed so it could come out on other platforms. However, did I make the wrong choice for getting Rayman Legends on a platform it wasn’t intended for?

So apparently Rayman, the Teensies and Globox have been asleep for century – during their slumber Bubble Dreamer’s nightmare grew bigger and they’ve captured a bunch of your friends. So it’s up to Rayman and the gang to defeat the enemies and save the day.

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Rayman Legends instantly wows you when you first drop into the levels. Ubisoft have created something unique with their UbiArt engine that virtually paints this extravagant world of Rayman in your face. It was beautiful and mesmerizing which reels you into the animated palette of the wacky universe. 

 It was beautiful and mesmerizing which reels you into the animated palette of the wacky universe. 

What’s more better than the art is the actual platforming mechanics themselves. The controls of Rayman Legends was accurate and tight – it’s as smooth as it can get. Probably my biggest pet peeve about platformers are their shoddy controls with lack of precise responsiveness which can ultimately destroy the experience and immersion – it’s great to see Rayman doing an excellent job in this department.

Rayman Legends delivers some incredible build up in level design and throws some of the most intricate walls during your playthrough. It starts off easily, allowing players to ease into the platforming before upping the difficulty that sent grown men like me crying in the corner figuring out to pass that goddamn spinning wheel thingy. It’s all about rinse and repeat (not as bad as it sounds) as you experiment ways on how to pass the level. Even as a side-scroller, Rayman Legends encourages exploration as each level is filled with hidden nooks and crannies that stores hidden doorways to… well more goodies. The sense of joy when discovering these hidden parts on the level is on another level of itself thanks to it’s zany sounds effects.

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While  running through the levels of Rayman Legends by yourself is nothing short of amazing, having a few friends getting involve just adds that extra layer of frolicking fun and madness. It does however gets a little too much in the later levels as difficulty rises and having friends who are ‘not up to par’ with the rest of the crew may thwart the experience into an un-enjoyable state. In saying that, there’s always Kung Foot to tackle and this little mini game is truly one of my biggest highlights in Rayman Legends multiplayer.

having a few friends getting involve just adds that extra layer of frolicking fun and madness.

Kung Foot is basically a side scrolling soccer mini-game that pits you against your friends as you attempt to volley the ball into each other goals. It seems rather pointless at first but the mini-game creates so much competition as each player tries to master the timing to accurately place the ball into the back of the net. It’s mindless fun and something a little extra to an already stellar game.

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 I loved almost every aspect of Rayman Legends but the experience felt handicapped in a way because of the lack of touchscreen controls the Xbox 360 had when comparing to the lead Wii U platform for this title. The game was made for Wii U and I get it, the Xbox 360 doesn’t have touchscreen and something had to be sacrificed which was the ability to control Murfy, the little character that you can use to manipulate the levels by sliding your finger across the pad. However with it missing, I still enjoyed the title overall.

Combining charm, wackyness and beautiful art style – Rayman Legends was a game that could have sold me on the Wii U if it went exclusive. However, that’s not the case now as other platforms can experience the excellent blend of precise platforming and incredible value. Rayman Legends is a must buy on any console.

Developer: Ubisoft Montpellier
Publisher: Ubisoft
Platform: Nintendo Wii U, PS Vita, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Windows PC (Reviewed on Xbox 360)

*Review copy provided by the publisher.