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March 04, 2018 2 min read
Until I started writing this week’s Destructoid Discusses piece, I didn’t realize just how many Rayman games there were. Seriously, look at this Wikipedia page. It’s not nearly as bad as Mario, but hell, Ubisoft sure threw Rayman into everything it could. Of course not all those games made it over to the States so I, like most people, probably most associated the character with his original trio of platformers. Rayman, The Great Escape, Hoodlum Havok; all exquisite titles and still pretty damn fun to play.
Then came the Rabbids.
I’ll admit, I was excited for Rayman’s Raving Rabbids when it was the original concept: a free-roaming action game where Rayman battled the invading horde of Rabbids. Seriously, this looks amazing. But that’s not the Rabbids game we got. What we were given was a title similar to many others that plagued the Wii throughout its existence: a mini-game collection. Rayman Raving Rabbids was followed by Raving Rabbids 2, another mini-game collection. And then another mini-game collection. And then Rabbids Go Home, which is actually very fun. And then two more mini-game collections. I don’t even think Rayman had anything to do with the series at that point, like how Spyro became less of a factor in the Skylanders series as the franchise evolved.
But then came November 15, 2011. Having long grown tired of the Rabbids and their antics, I was right ready to get back to the Rayman series I loved. So on that day I headed out to my local Target and put down my hard-earned cash… to buy Fossil Fighters: Champions. I picked up Rayman Origins a week later.
Like a hammer to the head, Origins is a blunt reminder of just how good Rayman and 2D platformers can be. Coming off the disappointing and feature-deficient port of Rayman 2 to the 3DS, it was a welcomed reminder that Ubisoft still cared about this character. Origins and its follow-up Legends, simultaneously a better and worse game, are still the best examples of the power of the UbiArt Framework engine and, if you ask me, superior to New Super Mario Bros Wii. and Uas four-player platformers.
Rayman Origins saved Rayman and I would love to see it ported to the PS4, Xbox One, or Nintendo Switch because I’d happily pay $20 for another trip through the entire Desert of Dijiridoos.
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