Review by The Spam Man
"Although UbiSoft chose to conform and remake a classic game to release with the GBA, it shows the Advance's true shining colors."
When I finally was able to purchase a Game Boy Advance, the next obstacle was indeed a tough one to conquer. With only a handful of release games to choose from, which one(s) would I select? Mario Advance and F-Zero were obvious, but then what? After careful consideration, Rayman was the choice for me, and it was a good one. When I first powered up, the company and game logos didn't really blow my mind, and the intro was exactly mind-boggling, but as soon as I started playing, I was utterly amazed at the fluid movements of all the characters and at the wonderfully smooth control of the game. I played the first level for a half-hour simply because it was so cool seeing a limbless cartoon weirdo jump about and dodge unidentified creatures. Indeed, first impressions were high. In a nutshell, this game is incredible. Even though it's not a completely new adventure, (it was produced on the Playstation beforehand), I still enjoyed it, mainly because I had never played the PS version. So essentially, to me, it was a new adventure. And several thousand others, I'm sure, had the same experience.
Gameplay: 9 - This game offers exceptional control and movement capabilities. The game is a great translation from more powerful systems, and still easily does the game justice. It is very easy to see your surroundings at all times. My only complaint is that you can't scroll down very far below you to see if it's safe to jump. But that's a minor problem that doesn't affect gameplay in most levels. Otherwise, the controls are simple, yet effective, and the world scrolls by at a more-than-satisfactory speed.
Difficulty: 8 - The first few levels were a little difficult to find everything, but I haven't yet finished the game, so it'd be unfair to say that the game is too easy. So far, every level has gotten harder, and hopefully the last levels will provide quite a challenge! But so far, the difficulty has been acceptable. The bonus levels are even tough to conquer sometimes.
Sound/Music: 9 - One thing for me that really affects my opinion of the game is the audio. The background music and sound effects can make or break a game. Fortunately, I enjoy both for Rayman. The music is playful and fits the mood, and the sound effects are likewise. And even better, when you turn the game, it asks if you'd like to disable music or sound. It'd be nice to have these in a options menu instead, but at least the option is there. One gripe I have about the actual sound is that it sounds quite 'tinny'. It is a minor problem, and not even a setback, but it is noticeable.
Replayability: 7 - It is the nature of platform games to go kaput once they've been beaten. The best part about playing a new game is finding things you've never seen before. So once the game has been beaten, it's the same adventure again (unless you have a bad memory). The games that get great replayability scores are the ones that not only have a great main feature, but side-features, like mini-games, a multiplayer mode, etc. Unfortunately, Rayman has neither, but the game could be played 2-3 times before really getting old.
Overall Score: 9 - Even thought the replay value is low and the sound is a little echo-ish, the game is awesome the first time. It'll give the newbie several hours of play, and the veteran something to do when they get bored. Overall, it is a great game. Certainly worth the $30-40 Kmart wants for it!
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 06/29/01, Updated 06/29/01
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