Rayman Legends Preview and Demo Impressions
Rayman Legends is an upcoming title exclusively for the Wii U. You can check out the 3 level demo from the Nintendo eShop, which can be played 30 times (like any Nintendo demo). The demo features co-op play, and a nice mixture of level types. Rayman Legends, like Rayman Origins (one of the better platformers in recent years), is a side-scrolling platformer. You can do a level as slow as you want, but the levels are built to able to run at a very fast pace, and often they’re incredibly fun if you just go full speed and see what craziness ensues.
The visuals are absolutely amazing. The glossy, well lit, crisp, stylized graphics are immediately noticeable. The gameplay elements like run, jump, attack, etc., seem similar to Origins — save for the GamePad’s additions. The GamePad isn’t like Mario where you just drop down blocks. What’s cool about it is that at any time the person with the GamePad can make their character disappear, and they can then manipulate objects on the screen using some little green flying dude. Tickle ogres to lower their defenses, rotate platforms, swipe your finger to ‘cut the rope’ for allies to swing on, move obstacles like carts, tap-to-clear floating obstacles, and participate with the GamePad in a totally different way from another player going through the level normally. If single-player, the AI takes over the played character while you use the GamePad. This adds a new dimension to platformers, especially in Rayman Legends.
We really, really liked the Castle Rock level. We were on these castle-looking ramparts and all of a sudden a wall of fire started chasing us. Music began to play, and it was all timed perfectly to when we collected Lums or made jumps. It was not only fun because it was forced to go fast, but a ton of action was on the screen and it matched perfectly with our movement. There’s also some element with the GamePad player keeping rhythm to make more Lums appear. This level made us giddy to the point of wishing the entire game played this way.