When looking at the heroes of platform games it’s easy to think of the two champions and kings of the hill, Sonic and Mario, who have managed to live side by side and be accepted as the dual kings of the genre. There have been some pretenders to the crown and many of these have fallen on their own swords based on the fact their games just weren’t that good. Then we have Rayman, a character that shows the tenacity to keep on fighting and with Rayman Legends brings one of the best platform gaming experiences not just on the Wii U where it was meant to be an exclusive but on other formats like the Playstation 3.
The premise of Rayman Legends is pretty simple to somebody who hasn’t really played many of the previous games. You jump through portraits to enter the levels then run through scripted chaos with the aim of not only saving Teensies but actually making it through the levels to survive. As you progress through the game you unlock more characters to play as and each have their separate skills. Not only that, but as a multiplayer experience you can have up to four players at once running around the screen (with more on the Wii U).
The thing that keeps Rayman Legends fresh for the player though is the different styles for each section of the game. Basically you have to finish a set of levels, you’ll then face a boss then be given a bonus musical level to play though as a treat, because they really are fun. The levels are not only inventive but addictive, and even the players (like me) who tend to give up on a level after dying too many times find themselves going back to the game because you just have to finish that level and get past the part where a building is falling on your head, or lava is chasing you past that jump you just know you can make it past.
When it comes to the fact that Rayman Legends was a Wii U exclusive there are elements that hint at its roots on the Nintendo machine, and this is functionality where the Wii U gamepad comes into effect. Some people may argue that there is no point in playing the game on any other console because of this very fact, but in my view (and anybody who has played the game on other consoles) this is to be fair a silly opinion that is not true at all. The fact is though the game has been adapted for other consoles so that it does work and for people who will never experience the Wii U game, they won’t even realise there were any issues between the versions.
The fact is Rayman Legends may have been planned as a Wii U exclusive but this had to change, and for the gaming community this is a very good thing. Rayman Legends is a game that not only brings new experiences to the Rayman legacy but also allows you to play past levels and offers plenty of things to unlock and discover for the Rayman fans. In extending the number of consoles it has been released on Ubisoft have managed to release a platform game that is an essential buy for fans, and a game that proves that the 2D platform game is far from dead.