If youâ€™re the least bit familiar with the console videogame market, you may know about UbiSoftâ€™s Rayman. This side-scrolling action game originated from the same nest that brought us Nintendoâ€™s Mario, Segaâ€™s Sonic the Hedgehog, and Shiny Entertainmentâ€™s Earthworm Jim; it puts a cute action hero in the middle of intensive shooting, bashing, and jumping action, rendered in side-view 2D. And it looks like this little guy can hold his own with the best of them.
Like most games of its type, Rayman is a little thin on story, but in this case, the plotâ€™s worth a mention. The mysterious Mr. Dark has defeated Betilla the Fairy and stolen the Great Protoon from a peaceful world. As a result, the small electoons that used to happily circle the Great Protoon are scattered over the world, captured by the minions of Mr. Dark. Your job? You guessed it: free the electoons and make your way to Mr. Darkâ€™s lair to rescue the Great Protoon and restore universal harmony.
There are a lot of nice touches throughout, from the variety of Raymanâ€™s powers and the ability to choose which level youâ€™ll visit next, to cartoon-quality animations that bring it all to life. Each level is unique, ranging from traditional side-scrolling scenes to vertical climbs. And unlike other games that force you to try countless times to finish the same level, Rayman lets you choose your path from a variety options. Helpful, since you often have to go back with powers you receive later in the game to recover all of the lost electoons, which means more challenge in a familiar setting.
On the surface, Rayman looks a little like a childrenâ€™s game, but the colorful, cartoonish style of the animation will please players of any age. And, unlike many recent games of this type, thereâ€™s no violence. The enemies are simply booted off the screen, not destroyed, and Rayman always has a happy grin on his face, even when facing overwhelming odds.
System Requirements: Pentium II 233 MHz, 32 MB RAM, Win98
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