If you checked out my review for Rayman Origins last November you probably noticed how much I loved the game. It's a gem among platformers with its old-school appeal and fun co-op gameplay, but probably the biggest triumph of all was the successful reboot of the Rayman series. Prior to its release, Rayman games were definitely lacking the nostalgia factor, and began veering in a new, yet short-lived direction. Ubisoft's decision to revitalize the series couldn't have come at a better time, igniting a new interest in young and old alike.
Origins isn't the only Rayman game to celebrate over though. Ubisoft is now working on the Wii U sequel, Rayman Legends. Borrowing Origins' simple, co-op gameplay and its handpainted style, Legends looks like it's going to be another whimsical, wacky ride. Legends sets itself apart from its predecessor in some very interesting ways; however, taking unique co-op features from the Wii U Gamepad and creating an involving form of teamwork.
During my time with the demo I played as Murfy, a fairy-like creature playable via the Wii U Gamepad. By using the touch screen, Murfy can perform several actions such as cut ropes, pick up and stun enemies, gather Lums and activate mechanisms. That last ability was definitely one of the most interesting, allowing you to tilt the Gamepad in order for Rayman and friends to maneuver past spiked passages. It took a little bit of practice to get the motion just right, but quickly became a fun new way to interact with the environments.
Another highlight for the demo was the rhythm segment at the end of the level where Murfy had to time touch screen taps to the rhythm of the music while Rayman kicked and jumped past obstacles. This part required plenty of cooperation from both players and did so in a fun, fulfilling way I'm looking forward to exploring more of.
Rayman Legends takes co-op into a bright, new direction. While the help/hinder aspects are still totally there, Legends offers a greater sense of involvement that's well-executed and tons of fun. If you thought Origins was an important new step in the Rayman series, get a load of Legends. You won't be disappointed.
Rayman Legends will be available on the Wii U this holiday season. We're very excited to see more of this new game and you should do! You can preorder it at Future Shop below:
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