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Rayman Origins 2

 

Rayman Origins is a platform game developed and published by Ubisoft for PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360, PlayStation Vita, Nintendo 3DS and Microsoft Windows. The game was released on November 15, 2011 in North America, November 24, 2011 in Australia and November 25, 2011 in Europe for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii. It was also released for PlayStation Vita as a launch title, with Microsoft Windows and Nintendo 3DS versions planned for release at a later date. The story follows Rayman, his friend Globox and two teensies as they fight Darktoons and other evil creatures that have infected the Glade of Dreams.




We simply adored Rayman Origins when it came out for game consoles last year.  Not only was it a complete blast to play along with three friends, but it also revitalized the platforming (and in some ways, shooting) as we know it, thanks to lush hand-drawn visuals, a wonderful soundtrack and the type of gameplay that never gets stale.  Now, somehow, Ubisoft has crammed most of that experience into the PlayStation Vita handheld, and it’s just as remarkable as ever – even after we’ve found all the Lums.


Some players will be sore that Rayman Origins doesn’t include co-op multiplayer like the original.  To be honest, it probably would’ve been a struggle to try to include it here in some form, mainly due to PlayStation Network issues.  Instead, though, we get a solid add-on with the Ghost Runs.  Here, you can record your best times on certain stages and collect additional Lums.  Sure, it’s not a wacky party experience, but it almost makes up for that loss, so we’ll accept it.

                     Rayman Origins, as we said, features some of the best 2D animation you’re likely to see in a game this generation.  Every bit of animated goodness from the original game made it in this port, from the voluptuous fairies that grant you new powers to the happy Lums that go jumping about, waiting to be collected.  The level structure is nothing short of brilliant, and even goofing off around The Snoring Tree (your home base) has its moments.

                  Though the game is light on the new Vita specific functions, you have the option of squeezing your fingers on the screen to zoom in and out of the action.  Though this is the kind of game where you’ll benefit from seeing more of the stage, it’s awesome being able to see just how much work Michel Ancel and his team have put into its appearance.  Play around with it for a while and make Globox slam around like a goofy idiot.  You just might break out into giggling fits.

                Somehow, Ubisoft has managed to shake off the vibe that had come from previous 3D Rayman adventures (not to mention those countless Rabbids games) and return to what made the limbless hero so endearing to begin with – classic platforming.  Everything from gliding across platforms to slamming into something on the ground is handled with utmost accuracy, so if you die, it’s probably something you did.  The concept of hidden goodies is well realized here, as you’ll be seeking out the likes of pink Lums and hidden coins.  You can unlock these awesome chase stages as well, where you pursue a treasure chest as he sprints across a continuously changing level.

    As for the sound, it’s stupendous.  The music is a bunch of lunacy-enabled tunes, from the stage selection tunes to the happy strumming that occurs when yellow Lums go happy red.  The voicework is mostly gibberish, as in most Rayman games, but it’s so delightful that you won’t really care.  I’m just glad that Ubisoft opted to go with the natural approach to the character, rather than chasing after A-list actors. 
Simply put, Rayman Origins is a masterpiece, a platforming game that deserves to reinvigorate the genre in its own special way.  And while the PS Vita version has its certain limitations (namely in multiplayer), it’s so joyous and spectacular to play that you won’t even care.  Get this with your system, and get happy.


 
Plot

In the Glade of Dreams, a world created by the mysterious Bubble Dreamer, Rayman, his best friend Globox, and some Teensy friends are chilling out at the Bubble Dreamer's resting grounds, the Snoring Tree. However, their snoring disturbs an old granny from the Land of the Livid Dead, who retaliates by sending an evil army of horrendous creatures and the Darktoons across the world, capturing the Electoons that inhabit the world, imprisoning Betilla the Nymph and her sisters, and plunging the Glade into chaos. As a result, the ensuing disaster causes the Bubble Dreamer to go crazy and have nightmares. Although they are captured, Rayman and his friends are able to escape the Darktoons. They are then tasked by a Caster Teensy known as the Magician with gathering enough Electoons to cure the Bubble Dreamer and restore the Glade of Dreams. Their efforts to locate the Electoons allow them to gain access to the various lands of the Glade, rescuing the Nymphs along the way.


Eventually, they make their way to a mysterious gate, which can only be opened by rescuing the Glade Kings, who have been turned into monsters as a result of Bubble Dreamer's nightmares. Upon freeing the Glade Kings, the Nymphs are able to open the stargate, granting Rayman access to a hideout in the land of Moody Clouds. There, they discover that their supposed friend, the Magician, is the one responsible for the Moody Clouds. He secretly admires Mr. Dark[7], the villain of the original Rayman, and has been using the Lums given to him by the heroes to power his diabolical machines. The heroes chase after the Magician and fight against him in his escape airship, sending it crashing into the power source of his hideout. The resulting chain of events causes the hideout to explode, while Rayman and friends free-fall back to the Snoring Tree, where they proceed to resume their chilling out.If players manage to collect the ten ruby teeth throughout the game, they can gain access to the hellish Land of the Livid Dead, where another monster, a Nymph accidentally transformed by Bubble Dreamer's nightmares, awaits.

Gameplay


           Rayman Origins is a side-scrolling platformer, simultaneously playable with up to four local players who may drop in or out at any time. Players can choose to control either Rayman, Globox or two Teensies, with additional costumes available as the game progresses.


Players travel through each level, fighting enemies and rescuing imprisoned Electoons. As the game progresses, players gain new abilities such as running up walls, gliding in midair, swimming and shrinking in size to reach new areas. Certain segments also sees players riding a mosquito, where players can shoot enemies or suck them up and fire them. If a character is hit by an enemy or obstacle, he will inflate into a ballooned state until another player can bring him back into the game by slapping him, similar to New Super Mario Bros. Wii, although players can collect hearts that will protect them from one hit. However, if all players are inflated simultaneously, or if a character is hit during single play, play returns to the last checkpoint. Throughout each level, players can collect gold-coloured Lums, and when a character collects a Lum King it temporarily doubles the smaller Lums value.There are also Skull Coins placed in hidden or dangerous areas that are worth 25 Lums each should they be successfully collected.

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