nce again Tuesday rolls around and here I am to give you something to read. I'm Cecil and today I'll be reviewing Rayman Legends, available for all current gen and last gen gaming consoles, Windows and PlayStation Vita. I myself played on the PS4 and am aware that there are some differences based on certain systems For example as far as I am aware, the PSvita version allows for control of the little green sprite that follows you, using the rear touch pad that the handheld includes.
So without further adjure, let's begin with Rayman Legends.
Playing Rayman Legends has been the most fun I've had in a long time, and that's really saying something. As I mentioned before in my Shovel Knight review, I'm terrible at platformers, but that did not stop me enjoying Rayman at all. It's quite an easy game as platformers go, but that does not mean that it isn't fun.
The controls work really well, really smoothly, and are very simple, standard fare, you have jump, attack and move, these can be combined in all the usual ways for full suite of movement on the games 2d plane. On top of these standard controls, you also have access to two more, the first is sprint, so on the PS4 you hold R2 and your character (not necessarily Rayman) runs at a faster rate.
The other is for use to command the green sprite. The green sprite's purpose is to move obstacles or distract certain enemies for you, for example there is a long reaching vine-like creature, with a single eye and large pointy teeth. The sprite will poke it in it’s eye so that it doesn't track you and reach to grab you, which is an instant kill. The game does not include a lives system like video -games of old, and it drops you immediately back into the action on death, no hanging around listening to the happy death jingle that some other games of this type have.
Now the controls are out of the way, let's look at one of my favourite sections of the game, and in fact one of the selling points on the back of the box, the music levels. These levels are a master-class in game level design. They time the music of some well known songs with such precision that as long as you don't let up the pace, you will always be jumping and attacking in time with the music. I won't reveal all the music levels but I will say this: have you ever wanted to hear a mariachi version of Eye of the Tiger? No? You must be lying, because I assure you, it is a wonder of modern music and I instantly understood why the music levels were a selling point.
There are six such levels in total, one for each world within the game. All of this, however, is not to say the rest of the game isn't fun, because I assure it all is. In my entire time with the game, no level made me bored, one or two caused me to have a break because I was bad at it, but that's neither here nor there. Even the water world, '20,000 Lums Under the Sea' was enjoyable, and that's not a common thing in games (I'm looking at you Mario and Zelda).
The visual style of Rayman Legends looks really good. The art team went with a hand drawn aesthetic, this works really well and helps the game hold up visually even four years after its release, which is something 3d games tend to struggle with, with graphically fidelity progressing year after year, leaving games from five years ago looking like they were made by someone by folding paper. Stylised graphics always outlast realistic.
The wide range of characters available to play, as all fundamentally play the same, but each have their own unique style. Rayman being the main character is obviously the one you start as, but after about three levels you unlock a warrior princess, and frankly I was much more into the idea of throwing an axe at enemies than just punching them. Mechanically it made no difference, it just looked nicer to me and as the game progresses, you unlock more and more outfit/skin changes for the different characters, one of my favourites being Assassin Rayman, which is just him wearing the garbs of the assassins from Ubisoft's Assassins Creed series, which is a nice touch.
The last thing to talk about from the main game is the sound design. The music for Rayman has always been incredible, even back with the original game in 1995. The audio quality is crisp and clear, and I found it difficult to play the game when people were around, because I wanted to listen to the music while I played, whereas in a lot of games I will lower the music volume and play my own music, with some notable exceptions like Doom (2016) and Command and Conquer, but more on those in the future (if you're lucky).
For those that play games multiplayer, you have the option of playing the main story in co-op mode, playing re-worked levels from Rayman Origins (which are unlocked through in game scratch cards, which are unlocked by playing the game and not micro-payments, so you have to earn them) and also Kung-Foot. Kung-Foot is one of the best mini-games ever introduced in anything, in my opinion at least.
The concept is a 2d football pitch, where the goals are raised slightly off the floor, and you punch and kick the ball to try and score, pretty simple, however, with the game open up to a possible six players, at least on PS4 using two PSvitas as player five and six, the it quickly becomes hectic as everyone scrambles for the ball all on the same screen.
I had a lot of fun playing Kung-Foot with my house-mate to pass the time when we had little else to do or were waiting for something else to download, however I got a bit too good at it, ending matches with a score of 14-4 and similar, when a match only lasts two minutes.
All in all, Rayman Legends is a great game and worth playing for anyone who enjoys platformers, Rayman, or just having fun at all. It's a great little game, and at time of writing available to pick up for about £10, so if you own any video game console released in the last five years, you can and should play it. Thanks for reading, I've been Cecil and you've been great.