Remember Rayman? No, not the Rabbids. Yes, those guys are fun too and would probably be the best option to lead Ubisoft given the publisher’s recent, rotating garbage fire of people in charge. The truth is that there hasn’t been a new console Rayman game since Rayman Legends in 2013. That seems like a long time for one of the most unsung heroes of the platformer genre. Heck, in that timeframe we’ve even gotten two new Bubsy games but nothing from Rayman if we’re not counting a couple of mobile excursions. So, for real: Where has Rayman gone? Should we send a search party? Is he okay? Blink once for yes, twice for no.
Rayman always seems like one of those franchises floating around the periphery of the gaming consciousness. Nobody ever has a bad thing to say about the guy, but all the same, it seems few and far between to find anyone willing to jump out on a limb and say a Rayman game is one of their favorites. While not in the same tier of joy I’d place the likes of Donkey Kong Country–one of my favorite franchises of all time–I do have fond memories of the Rayman franchise that stick with me to this day.
Mainly my wedding day, oddly enough.
It was a cold morning and I had just gotten over a random bout of pneumonia leading up to the big day, so trying to relax without feeling like garbage was a herculean task. Having gotten to the wedding venue early we found ourselves with plenty of time to kill, which I did by playing through Rayman Legends on my PlayStation Vita–which means “life.” While many of my memories have faded from that day, coming up on seven years ago, I still have a strongly vivid memory of playing Rayman and having a good time with my closest friends.
And what’s not to like? The recent Rayman entries are gorgeous and deceptively brutal, proving that platformers don’t always need to be entry-level gaming endeavors. The hand-drawn art of the two most recent console Rayman games stand the test of time and inject more personality into its games than most titles could ever hope to acquire. That style even carries over to the more recent mobile coutnerparts, though sadly Mr. Man missed an entire console generation, with no new console Rayman experience made since the PS4’s release.
It appears we’re out of luck for a new Rayman console experience before the PS5, minus the recently released Rayman Mini–a proper Rayman title, sure, but only available on Apple Arcade. It’s a shame, as when I think about the prospect and power of a new console cycle I immediately think about how good a new Rayman game could look and run, especially on the PlayStation 5. Perhaps Ubisoft can gets its broken messy house in order and get back to its roots with a Rayman game worthy of past entries in the franchise.
Oh, and more Rabbids games would be fine as well. How about a Rabbids tactics game crossover starring Activision’s Crash Bandicoot? I’d be into that.