For those who’ve read my demo impressions of Rayman Legends will know that I didn’t pay attention to Origins, but after a quick hands-on I instantly fell in love with the series and praised every second of the demo. Hopefully I have made amends for the travesty of not playing Origins by loving the heck out of Legends
Rayman, the hero of the Glade of Dreams, and a bunch of his pals decide to take a nap after their heroic exploits in Origins. Unbeknownst to Rayman and company their little nap turned into a century long sleep! The Bubble Dreamer’s nightmares took this opportunity to grow in number and take over the Glade of Dreams. The Bubble Dreamer implores the Geenbottle named Murfy to find our heroes and slap them awake so they can save the day.
After getting the tired slapped right out of him, Rayman falls into the first level right away. This introductory level will teach players all the skills they will need to navigate over 160 levels; over 120 levels in Legends and 40 remastered levels from Rayman Origins. The objective of every level is simple enough: save the Teensies and collect as many Lums as you can, doing so will unlock new levels and worlds for you to explore. And you don’t have to fight the nightmarish baddies by yourself; invite 3 friends over for some instant drop-in drop-out co-op mayhem!
You access the worlds and that houses the levels via the Main Gallery. Worlds and levels range in varying difficulties from one through five skulls, one meaning easy-peasy and five meaning it’s time to bring you’re A game. As I previously mentioned, you must acquire a certain amount of Teensies before unlocking new world and stages, so you might be required to revisit stages. This may wear on a some players, but the game has that certain charm to make that issue nonexistent.
There are even some diversionary levels you can partake in that mixes up the action, like rescuing Barbara the Barbarian Princess and her sisters, playing the remastered Origins levels, or when unlocked, playing the ‘Invaded’ levels that have you playing darker versions of completed levels, but backwards and on a timer! Just by collecting a certain amount of Lums and just going through the game you will frequently unlock in-game goodies like additional levels, Lums, and characters. It gives you that feeling of accomplishment and that everything you do will be rewarded with new and cool stuff.
I cannot stress how much I love how visually pleasing Rayman Legends is, it’s just that marvelous. I mentioned the Main Gallery and I couldn’t have imagined a better setting and here’s the reason: the entire game looks like it belongs in an art gallery! Don’t touch the controller and just look at the game; it’s like a living, interactive piece of concept art. Each world is teeming with its own unique themes as everything from the background to the foreground is used to add an extra layer to truly bring out these beautiful and sometimes ominous settings.
Controls can make or break a platforming title, but not only did Rayman Legends get it right it nailed it right on the noggin. Those few minutes in the beginning will teach you the ropes on basics, gliding, running, melee, and wall jumping. This seemingly standard set of moves will be used in a whole assortment of different scenarios and shifting gameplay mechanics, which puts your mastery of these skills to the test in fun and interesting ways. And there is no steep learning curve when others join your game; no move sets, no power-ups, just you and characters capabilities are needed to enjoy all that Legends has to offer.
Legends’ soundtrack provides some of the catchiest tunes you’ll ever hear. Different sets of instruments are used to set the overall feel and tone of the setting, like the Main Gallery for example; the quaint use of a ukulele along with whistling is what makes Legends stand-out amongst the crowd as cheerful and uplifting.
But when the action kicks in so does the music. The games phenomenal soundtrack also includes a Legends twist on Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Black Betty” and Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” for the end stages of each world and every jump you make goes in tandem with the beat. These stages are remarkable because of this ingenious use of the game’s soundtrack and players will definitely look forward to tackling these highlights of gaming awesomeness.
What else could I even possibly say? I fell in love with the game by simply playing the demo and now that I’ve had more time with it, I’m beyond enamored by its simplicity and elegance. It’s living art with wonderful music, spot-on controls and beautifully imagined environments. The amount of content in this game will leave your head spinning and you can easily have friends join in all the fun to help you sort through it all. It’s platforming at its finest, and in my opinion, one of the greatest.