Tag Archives: rayman

Top Songs from Rayman Legends

You may have read a post I wrote some time ago about my favorite songs from “Rayman Origins”, one game that has some of the best music I have ever heard.  Seriously.  And so I was quite excited when “Rayman Legends” came out, and while my standards were quite high due to the amazing music of its predecessor, I was not disappointed.  This game has some great and unique songs, as well, and now I present you all with my top ten songs from this wonderful game, with links to Youtube.

10. “Dark Creature Pursuit” plays in levels where these terrifying creatures chase you, a perfect title and an even better song.  I’m serious; this song is scary, especially when you’re being chased by the savage, little monsters referred to in the title.  The song is fast and really raises your heart rate and blood pressure just by listening to it.  I especially love the beginning section.  So frightening…

9. “Laser level” is likely not the accurate name of this song, but it was all I could find, and it does indeed play in levels that often involve, well, lasers.  This is a fast song that sounds kind of like an accordion to me and can only be described as…hyper.  Not to mention awesome.

8. “Orchestral Chaos” is the second of the musical levels, levels where the gameplay is in sync with the music.  This one, while not being my favorite of the musical levels, has my favorite music, a more classical style that I always enjoy.  As this music is best experienced along with the gameplay that accompanies it, I included the video of this level, as well.  Because I am kind.

Video from Youtube User: IGNGameplay

7. “Infernal Pursuit” is often played in faster-paced areas involving running from something or chasing after something, and the music fits quite well.  I think it’s a rather pretty song, too.  It sounds like a violin to me.

6. “Fiesta de los Muertos” is one of the stranger songs of the game, with the whistling parts and the vocals, but I find it strangely soothing.  It takes a while to get started, but it gets much better at 0:48, once you get past the part that sounds rather like people eating crunchy food….

5. “Infinite Tower” is a super epic song that is a variation of the game’s main theme.  It is…epic.  Ridiculously so.  Especially with the vocals that start around 1:44.

4. “20,000 Lums Under the Sea” is such a great song (once it gets started around 0:30) and takes place in some of the awesome spy-themed underwater levels (the best levels of the game).  I love this song.  It manages to sound rather glamorous and yet, mysterious, all at once.  (And it strangely reminds me of some of the music from “Ratchet and Clank: A Crack in Time”, especially Vorselon’s ship…)

3. “Toad Story” is a super beautiful song that I think only plays once in the game.  It is quite lovely, but also very sad.  I enjoy listening to it, even though it depresses me.

2. “The Spy Who Kicked Me” is close to the song I wanted, but I couldn’t quite find the exact song that I really loved from the level, the “Mysterious Inflatable Island”, so I included the video for it below.  I just love this song, and I loved this level, too, evading all the lights and trying not to get caught.  Gah, why don’t they have a video of just the music!  Why, cruel world!

Video from Youtube User: IGNGameplay

1. “Once Upon a Time” plays very early on in the game, and it is quite a fun song to listen to.  It sounds very medieval.

The Duck Who Kicked Me

Rayman Legends, One of the Duck’s Favorite Sidescrollers

I recently had the pleasure of playing the second of the new platformer “Rayman” games that have been released in the last few years, “Rayman Legends”.  If you are not familiar with these games, they feature super fun, yet challenging, platforming gameplay with unique character and location design, brought to life through beautifully colorful artwork.  These two games are as much fun to play as they are to simply admire.  But, while I thoroughly enjoyed the game that was released prior to this one, “Rayman Origins”, I did wonder to myself, is “Legends” just going to be more of the same?  Are they going to be able to do anything to distinguish this game from the one that came before or will it be the same gameplay, just taking place in different locations?

The answers to those questions were a no, yes, no, respectively.  I must say, I was really impressed that they managed to take something pretty similar to a game that came out just a year or two ago and make it fresh and new all over again.  The artwork looks the same (as in, it’s just as breathtaking as it was in the last game) and the characters have the same moves, but they also managed to do so much more with this game than the last one.

For one thing, there is more to do in this game.  There are tons of playable characters, most of which consist of different Teensies and versions of Rayman and Globox just like last time, but we also get ten princesses (butt-kicking princesses, though) to play as.  While there is honestly not really much difference between the different playable characters, as they really do the same exact things with slight changes that are more aesthetic than anything, it was still fun having such a variety of characters to choose from.  As for obtaining these playable characters, the princesses are unlocked by completing certain levels, while nearly everyone else is unlocked by collecting Lums (and will likely require more than one playthrough to get all of them, as I ended up with almost 500,000 Lums when I beat the game, with 500,000 more to go in order to unlock the last character).

And speaking of Lums, one way to get extra Lums is by collecting creatures that leave behind Lums every day, a new addition to the game.  I find them rather silly, and they don’t really give you enough Lums to make a huge difference, but it’s something new.  Creatures are obtained by scratching lucky tickets, which you get from collecting enough Lums in every level.  Lucky tickets are a very fun new element added to this game, as each one gives you a chance to win a variety of things (and you always win something), such as creatures, as I just mentioned, Lums, Teensies (there are 700 to collect or rescue in this game), and “Rayman Origins” levels.

Yep, you heard me right, you can actually unlock “Rayman Origins” levels in this game.  Now, don’t think you can just skip that game and play it all here in “Legends”, as this game only includes about half of the levels from “Rayman Origins” (and don’t worry, the terribly glitchy “Pirate’s Treasure” level was not included).  While I find it a little odd to have about half this game’s levels come from the previous game, it was fun playing those levels again, and I suppose it’s a testament to how fun “Origins” was that I had so much fun playing through levels I had already done.

Aside from all these extras, I also think this game has a better variety in terms of locations than the previous game.  While I love “Origins”, many of the levels in that game felt like just another jungle level or just another ocean level.  I didn’t feel that way in this game, however.  I think the worlds were not only more unique from what you’d see in other games (they actually have an entire world inspired by the Mexican holiday, Dia de los Muertos; how often do you see that in a game?), but even within this game, each level felt unique and different from the other levels.  I really think the levels in this game were more defined.  By that, I mean that each level is not just another location to explore that, while looking a bit different, is really the same thing as what you’ve already done.  I think each level has a clearer theme, and I really enjoyed that.

Now, while I loved nearly every aspect of this game, there are several highlights concerning new types of levels that I wanted to point out, the Murfy levels and the musical levels.  Remember Murfy from “Rayman 2”?  Well, while he did make a terribly obnoxious appearance (very much unlike the Murfy I remember from the previous game) in “Rayman 3”, he played a much smaller role in “Origins” (I honestly didn’t even remember him being in it until reading a wiki article on him).  And so I was quite happy to see this little guy again in “Legends”, now with a much more helpful role.  Murfy now appears in various levels throughout the game, and he can do all kinds of useful things.  He can move things for you or cut ropes.  He can slap enemies in the eye, which seems mean, but it has its uses, or he can tickle tough foes to make it easier to defeat them.  In one level, he can even eat cake, which is a lot more useful than it sounds.  I just loved these levels, and it could be quite fun controlling your character while also working with Murfy at the same time.

But, as much as I loved those levels, the music levels were even greater.  There are six regular music levels, and the concept is simple, but ingenious.  These levels require you to run through them while dealing with all kinds of dangers and obstacles, and the music is in sync with everything that’s happening.  You know what, I can’t even properly describe just how great this really is, so check out the video below, of the first and best of all the musical levels in the game.  (In case you couldn’t tell, the song is a version of “Black Betty”).  This level was so fantastic, in fact, I even wrote a post about it on “United We Game”, if you want to check it out.

Video from Youtube user: GameKiller346

You see how great that was?  I know.  Awesome.  And if you enjoy playing through the regular six musical levels in this game, they also have much harder 8-bit versions to try your luck on….  They are seriously cruel, but great.

Okay, and so that covers my main praises for the game.  Now it’s time for just a little bit of complaining, though I seriously mean a little.  I have a few very small problems with the game.  One is I think it is less challenging than the previous game, which is good and bad.  “Origins” could be ridiculously hard.  Sometimes, it was just not fun how hard it was.  “Legends” is easier, which is probably good overall, but I must admit, I was expecting more of a challenge from this game after playing the previous one.  Some levels were indeed hard (especially the Invasion levels, which require you to get through within 40 seconds if you want to save all the Teensies, which can be quite an ordeal), but not as much so as “Origins”, leaving the game feeling a bit less satisfying to complete.  But, at the same time, it was also much less frustrating, as well, which I suppose evens things out.

And my last little complaint is that “Legends” doesn’t feel as substantial as “Origins” (even though it took me a week longer to finish).  Sure, it has more to do and probably about the same number of levels, but having essentially half the game come from “Origins” made it not feel as much of a solid, new game to me.  Not quite.  “Rayman Origins” had ten new worlds of levels, plus an extra hard level at the end.  “Rayman Legends” has only five main worlds of actually new levels, plus a world consisting of harder versions of the music levels.  It’s still a big game and will keep you busy for a good amount of time, but it just felt odd that about half the levels were ones I played before.

But, those are just slight complaints.  This is truly a fantastic game, even better than its predecessor, and I enjoyed every minute of it.  They really managed to improve on “Origins” with much more unique and varied levels and more things to do, as well.  Maybe half the levels come from the previous game, but there are still plenty of new things to do, and the “Origins” levels were still quite fun to play over again.  Not to mention the easier difficulty level might have disappointed me to a degree, but it likely also served to make the game more fun to play.

To be honest, I believe that aside from the old “Donkey Kong Country” games on the Super Nintendo, “Rayman Origins” and “Rayman Legends” are the best platformers I’ve ever played.  And they are far superior to other platformers in terms of how fun and easy the characters are to control, with the variety of moves and the very easy to pull off wall jumps, not to mention the most convenient way in which they can hover, making it so much easier in this series to land tricky jumps than in games where you basically get one chance to land right or you die.  And if you do miss a jump, the characters are great about grabbing ledges and sticking to walls so you can attempt to save yourself with a wall jump, allowing me to survive mistakes I would have never been able to live through in any other series.  While I used to say I wanted to see another “Rayman” game that was more like “Rayman 2”, I now really look forward to seeing another platformer like “Legends”, and I very much hope that someday, other developers will learn a thing or two from these games and incorporate the beautiful controls featured in these games to other platformers.  Ubisoft, I can’t even say how much you guys impress me.

Rayduck Legends

Muramasa the Demon Blade and Artwork vs. Realistic Graphics

Not long ago, I finished playing “Muramasa: The Demon Blade” after a two year break (I got a new XBox 360 halfway through and then was distracted by that and other various things for quite some time afterward).  What I noticed first and foremost about this game when I found it at the store was the interesting art style and the rich colors on the front and back covers, which ended up being the main reason I decided to buy it (plus, the game store was having some kind of sale, so why not?).  But, first, a summary of the game.

            This game is a side-scrolling action game.  Throughout the game, you collect or forge different swords, each with its own special skill, some of which can break different barriers that block your progress to various locations.  Battles are fought with three of your swords, which you can switch between, preferably before your current sword breaks, and switching swords at the right time allows you to attack all enemies on-screen at once.  The strategy involved in fighting in this game makes the battle system more interesting than simple button mashing (which is what I still largely did, though).  The game is also composed of two stories, the story of Momohime (though, I don’t know if that is accurate, as she is possessed nearly the entire time) and the story of Kisuke, plus multiple secret endings.  The stories and characters were fairly interesting, though they didn’t particularly appeal to me.  It was other aspects of the game that made it stand out to me the most.

            One aspect of the game I liked was that it takes place in Japan, and I enjoyed being able to play a game while also learning a bit about the country and its mythology.  (The game is actually named after the famous Japanese sword smith, Muramasa, whose blades were rumored to not return to their sheaths until they “tasted blood”, if you will, even forcing the wielder to commit suicide if no other victim could be found.)  I also encountered various monsters from Japanese folklore, like the Kappa, Tengu, and the most bizarre Kasa-obake, a strange umbrella monster that hops around on one foot.  The game, while having dialogue written in English, is also spoken entirely in Japanese, which I also found interesting.

            What distinguishes this game from others the most, though, is the style of artwork.  This game has some of the most stunning scenery I have ever seen.  The backgrounds (and characters) are more in a 2D style, but the background is kind of layered in a way, so it gives a more 3D feel to it.  The locations use such vibrant colors and are positively beautiful to behold, from a stormy ocean (with a cameo appearance of the famous woodblock print “The Great Wave of Kanagawa”) to snowy hills with a frozen river running off into the horizon, from mysterious forests to tranquil fields of wheat at sunset.  This game mainly involves fighting enemies and traveling, and the traveling doesn’t get as boring as I think it would have otherwise because the scenery is so lovely to look at.

            And this makes me think of other games that use beautiful art styles, like “Rayman Origins” and “Okami” (the latter of which uses more of the Japanese ink art style in its scenery and characters).  These games, along with “Muramasa”, stand out from other games, not because their graphics are realistic, but because they are unique and beautiful.  Sure, games like “Halo 4” and “Final Fantasy XIII” look amazing.  But, now that technology has reached that point, we’re going to see a lot more games that look like that.  It’s not going to be so novel anymore once most games look that good, and we have become used to it.

            It is the games with the different styles that will stand out in terms of graphics and are the ones that will always be beautiful to look at, even after the excitement of nearly-realistic graphics wears off.  It’s like the difference between a photo and a painting.  A well-taken photo can be nice to look at, but for me, a beautiful painting is so much more interesting to look at.  A painting can use a style and colors that brings out emotions that a photo can’t.  A photo shows you what’s there.  Yes, photographers can be artsy with lighting and angle, but paintings still can do things photos can’t.

            So I have gotten a bit off-topic about this game.  The game is a lot of fun, with a story and characters that are perfectly adequate (like I said, I didn’t get overly attached to these aspects, but they certainly weren’t bad).  But, it was the art style that stood out to me the most.  This game is an interactive piece of art, and it has one of the most beautiful art styles I have ever seen.  (I noticed this when I bought it, and this initial impression only grew when I saw that it also has one of the loveliest manuals and disks the world has ever known.)  So while this game is not among my list of favorites, it still will always stand out to me because of its stunning art style.  That alone might be reason enough to check this game out so you can see its glory for yourself.

The Duck Blade

The Duck is Now an Author, a Wiki Author That is

A little while ago, I decided to join the Raywiki.  It all started when I grew tired of playing “Rayman 3” for eight years while still not knowing what the characters were saying, so I started looking for a script.  But, I never found one.  I only found a page on the Raywiki that had some “Rayman 3” quotes, but not that many.  Driven to madness, the duck decided it was time to listen extra hard and figure out these quotes myself.  And while I was at it, I may as well list them on the Raywiki for everyone else to see.  Does my kindness know no bounds?

            So I listened, and I listened.  After straining my ears and my mind, I finally started to understand what the characters were saying.  I don’t know why I didn’t do this before.  Then, I was faced with a new challenge.  Learn how to create a Raywiki account.  The web site did not want me to log on.  Time after time, I would charge at it and be tossed back like a toddler trying to do battle with a sumo wrestler.  After quite a bit of effort, I spotted a sign of hope on the horizon.  I mean, I saw the word “Register” in the forum.  And alas, my account was created.  Oh, glorious day!

            So I compiled dozens of pages of quotes in my notebook, then I typed them on the Raywiki.  Check it out.  Not to be arrogant.  Not to be a bragging jerk.  Not to be a scumbag, but it is with 100% honesty when I say that most of the quotes were the ones I added.  At least, for now.  I’m pretty proud of what I did.  It’s not often I make a contribution to society.

            But, when looking at the rest of the Raywiki, I have done next to nothing.  I’m trying to help here and there.  Little bits and pieces.  A link here, a sentence there.  I did write much of this page, the one on the dreaded, glitch-containing Pirate’s Treasure level that plagued me in “Rayman Origins”.  I was excited to see a page I could do.  Hooray!  I also wrote a few more pages on other “Rayman Origins” levels, and I also added some “Rayman 2” quotes.  I want to be useful.  Hopefully I am, even if just a little.

            Anyway, I’m pretty excited to see what I can contribute.  I’ve never worked on a wiki before.  And if you don’t mind, check out my user page.  I thought some of it was rather funny.  Great, now I sound like a creep again.

An Arrogant Duck?

Top Songs from Rayman 3

Another music post, this time on the music from “Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc”.  While not as good as the music of “Rayman Origins”, “Rayman 3” does have some good music of its own that complements the levels very nicely.  I included links to Youtube, like usual.

            10. “Begoniax” is the music that plays during the fight with the witch, Begoniax.  I hated this battle with a passion, but the music made it not so bad.  I don’t know if this is the same version I remember, but I can’t find anything else.

            9. “Hoodmonger Outpost” is some pretty music that plays in Clearleaf Forest.

            8. “Disco Jam” is funky music played in this room with the Teensies early in the game and is also kind of similar to music played in the “funkyboard” levels.  When I hear it, I am tempted to dance like the Teensies.

            7. “Razoff’s Wrecking Ball” is played in Razoff’s basement, where he rides around on a wrecking ball and tries yet again to kill you.  Once again, the people responsible for the music did a good job, especially when I would have no idea whatsoever what music goes with such an absurd battle.  Good thing no one asked me to compose any music for it, then.

            6. “The Great Escape” is played when you’re escaping from the rising lava in Hoodlum Headquarters.  It scares me.  It sounds like I’m being chased by a bee swarm.  If said bee swarm did ever chase me, I wouldn’t be surprised if this music started playing out of thin air.

            5. “Curious Globox” is a pretty song that plays outside of the Fairy Council.  It has a magical feel to it.

            4. “Land of the Livid Dead” is played early on in the level with the same name.  The music is pretty and peaceful.

            3. “Begoniax Swamp” plays in the first part of the Bog of Murk, outside of Begoniax’s place.  I think this one has a very interesting sound to it.

            2. “Razoff’s Mansion” plays in Razoff’s mansion, of course, which may not be very fitting when you have a lunatic with a rifle after you, but I like it nonetheless.  It also features the kazoo and, I think, a harpsichord.  What good song doesn’t?

            1. “Hoodoo Sorcerer” has always been my favorite.  It has an odd sound and a good beat.  It sometimes plays when you have to fight a Hoodoo and also during the credits.

Duck Jam, the music, not the food

Hoodlums are Naughty

After playing “Rayman Origins”, I was originally planning on finishing “Muramasa”.  I did one story two years ago, and I didn’t finish the other one because I had recently gotten an XBox 360 and wanted to play that.  Once again, though, I became distracted.  “Rayman Origins” was so much fun, I decided to hook up the good old Cube again and play “Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc” (despite already beating it five times), which I haven’t played for over five years.  Sorry “Muramasa”, but you can’t compete with Rayman.  He’s my pal.

            First of all, for those of you who don’t know who Rayman is (I forgot to mention it in my “Rayman Origins” post), Rayman is a limbless dude with hair he can use like a helicopter that stars in the awesome “Rayman” series.  “Rayman” games are often strange and feature bizarre characters and places, and “Rayman 3” is no exception.  Story-wise, this game is about Rayman trying to stop the Lord of the Dark Lums, Andre, and his army of Hoodlums.  Hoodlums are simply Dark Lums in impossibly fancy disguises.  (Get it?  Hood Lums?  Get it!)  Andre ends up accidentally being swallowed by Rayman’s cowardly friend, Globox, so they set out to find a doctor that can get that Dark Lum out of Globox’s tummy while fighting off the Hoodlums that want their master back.  By the end of the game, there’s the typical story where the characters must save the world and stuff.

            “Rayman 3” has always been a lot of fun and also very funny and weird.  Most of the character design is pretty unique, too, like with other “Rayman” games.  The Hoodlums, in particular, are pretty strange enemies.  They are very weird looking, rather goofy, things made of cloth, I believe, and there is quite a variety.  Hoodlums with guns are most common.  There are also Hoodbooms that throw bombs, Hoodbooms on stilts, Hoodoo sorcerers.  Lots of Hoodlums for Rayman to pummel.  There are also all these new powers Rayman can get, which makes things more fun.  For example, the Shock Rocket, for guiding a rocket places Rayman can’t go, the Heavy Metal Fist, for making your attacks stronger, and Lockjaw, for crossing these hooks that float in the air in some places.  (Lockjaw is my favorite, since it lasts the longest and is therefore great for getting points.)

            The points is another thing new in this game.  You can get points from all these jewels that are lying around (surprised no one’s stolen them), and you also get points from defeating enemies and finding Tribelles and Matuvus and such.  There are also lots of secret rooms where you can find jewels, too.  You can get more points by getting lots of things in a short time period with combos, and you get double points when Rayman has one of his special powers.  These points unlock mini games and videos, which I’ll get to later.  It’s not required to beat the game, but it can be fun to see how many points you can get.  I think my best score so far was 412,056, and my score this time was 404,629.  (According to the official strategy guide by Greg Kramer, the top score possible is 414,788, but I heard that you really can get over 800,000, even though the game creators only intended on 500,000.  I prefer the former to be true.  It makes me feel like less of a failure.)

            Anyway, “Rayman 3”, while being a very fun game, does have some flaws.  For one thing, the game is too silly.  “Rayman 2”, my favorite game of the series, is a bit too serious, but “Rayman 3” goes too far the other way.  “Rayman 2” felt like this big, important adventure where you had to save the world from the horrible Admiral Razorbeard.  This game is really missing that feeling.  I don’t take the situation so seriously in this game.  I’m not afraid of Andre.  He may be as evil as Razorbeard (who really did have a sharp beard, in case you’re wondering, ‘cuz he was a robot), I don’t know, but he’s not nearly as good of a villain.  As far as being a game, they did a good job.  It’s very fun.  But, it’s not epic or anything.  It can’t compete with “Rayman 2” or “The Legend of Zelda” series or other such games.  This game is just kind of missing a soul sometimes, if that makes sense.  (Perhaps the game fell victim to the Dementors from “Harry Potter”!  Gasp!)

            There is also voice acting, unlike the other games.  Overall, I like the voice acting.  It’s fine for a silly game.  But there are times when it can be obnoxious.  (I’m talking to you, Gumsi.  And Begoniax.  And much of the Teensies.)  I can’t understand the characters sometimes, either.  They like to have their characters talk fast at times or have strange accents, and many times I just can’t make out the words.  Just recently, I’ve started being able to decipher what they’re saying, but it should be more clear.  Or they should’ve just given us subtitles.  There are none.  The game needs them very badly.  Perhaps they intended on it, but the creators of the game could no longer remember what their own characters said.  Or the dialogue was simply pure gibberish, as it sometimes sounds.

            But, like I said, at the same time, I like the voice acting.  Maybe other “Rayman” games shouldn’t have it (for the sake of all things holy, please do not have anymore voice acting, I beg you!), but the voice acting does make this game more fun.  The voice acting allows this game to have a lot of random in-game dialogue that games without voice acting can’t really have.  And there is a LOT of this dialogue.  Rayman rarely speaks, but Globox (with Andre in his belly) are with Rayman much of the time, and they have a lot to say.  And so do other random characters Rayman encounters.  And the dialogue can be pretty funny.  Without voice acting, we couldn’t have such classics as:

Globox: Guess what, I dreamt I was pregnant.  It was great.  I craved strawberries.

Razoff: No more steroids for you, scoundrel!

Teensie: Yay, I need to go alphabetize my sausages.

Knaaren: Make him write bad checks.

Begoniax: Aaaah, there’s that pervert again!

            (Actually, that last one was part of a cut scene and doesn’t count as an in-game quote, but I just had to type it.)  So the funny dialogue makes up for any problems I have with the voice acting.  There is so much of this random dialogue, it makes playing more fun because you often catch dialogue the next time you play that you missed before.  (That steroid one is new for me.)

            Despite my problems with it, this game is a lot of fun.  I just love it.  I love fighting the Hoodlums, using the different powers, trying to get points.  There are nine worlds of limbless fun.  A hot desert where the invincible Knaaren live.  A really long shortcut.  There’s snowboarding and even a few areas where Rayman shrinks down and rides around in his shoe, while pursuing the other shoe as it drives off (and without a driver’s license!).

            Like I said earlier, you can unlock mini games and videos by getting points.  (The GameCube gets a few extras.  In your face, PS2 and XBox!  In your face!)  The mini games are fun, and there is a nice, little variety.  There’s a tennis type thing you can play between two Hoodlums called Racket Jump, which I am crap at.  Never beat that even once.  Never will.  There’s also one called Missile Command where you control a rocket thingy to fly through this area.  I can do that one.  Yay.  I recently got good at Commando, which I think was from my practice dodging things with the Moskito in “Rayman Origins”.  In this mini game, you play as Razoff, and you just simply get through three levels and shoot Hoodlums.

            Now the secret videos.  These are videos training Hoodlums on ways to kill Rayman called “Wanna Kick Rayman” (no, thank you).  It involves a Hoodlum and a creature wearing Rayman’s shirt, and said Hoodlum doing something terrible to said creature wearing Rayman’s shirt.  Pretty funny.  Pretty immature at times.  But, pretty funny.  I can’t bring myself to describe any, though.  So immature.

            I wanted to mention two specific secret rooms in the game that have characters from “Rayman 2”.  One is in part 3 of the Longest Shortcut.  Shooting a certain round thing opens a wall, and behind that wall is Ly the fairy.  (No!  Ly’s been turned to stone!  NOOO!  Oh, never mind, it’s just a statue of Ly the fairy.)  And in part 3 of Hoodlum Headquarters, when you first start the area, there is a huge machine to the right.  After a bit of climbing, you can helicopter over to the right side of this machine and find an entryway into another secret room.  In here, you find the dastardly Admiral Razorbeard and his Robopirates (don’t worry, they’re fake or something) arranged to look like “The Last Supper” painting.  These rooms are pretty random, but I think it’s fun to see the characters from the previous game.  Ah, smells like memories.

            Anyway, I still like this game overall, and I can mostly overlook the big problems it has, but it’s a shame it’s lacking much of the charm “Rayman 2” and “Rayman Origins” has.  The game can still be a lot of fun, though, and the points give the game great replay value.  I’ll keep coming back to this game for many years.  And someday, I shall be the greatest “Rayman 3” player.  Ever.

Ducklum Havoc

Una Vida Glou Glou

“Rayman Origins” is one of the most unique games ever, with equally unique music.  The music in this game is some of the best and most different I have ever heard.  These songs have interesting sounds to them, including songs with voices singing, but usually not human voices.  The voices sound more like creatures in the game (I believe it’s the Lums singing), which made it more interesting to listen to.  So the loading of my blog doesn’t take longer, I included links to youtube rather than videos (I don’t know if it would matter, but I don’t want to slow things down, just in case).  I am thoughtful.

            10. “Village on the Water” is a peaceful, Hawaiian sounding song in the ocean levels.  I want to play a ukulele and sing along.  “Ai maka liki naki wani.  Oo la.  Ai maka liki naki wani.  La la oo.”

            9. “Panic at the Port” is a fun, faster Hawaiian sounding song in the ocean levels.  Also want to sing along.  “Waka doo waka doo waka DOO!”

            8. “Mecha Factory” is played in the Moody Clouds level.  (I felt the clouds were more fussy than moody myself.)  I especially like the beginning.

            7. “Land a Chef” is a jazzy song played in some of the frozen levels.

            6. “Chasing a Dream” is a Western sounding song played in part of the Land of the Livid Dead.  It doesn’t fit the level super well, but I still like it.

            5. “The Abyss” is played in deep water in the ocean levels.  I like the creepy sound to it.  It makes me feel cold and alone.  It gets even better at 1:07.

            4. “One Step at a Time” plays in some jungle levels.  It is good, but takes a while to start.  Skip ahead to 1:45 if you want to go right to the good part.  I like that more and more is added as the song goes along.  A nice beat is added, and then some twanging.  It’s fun.

            3. “Nowhere to Run” is played in part of the Land of the Livid Dead.  It sounds a bit Western to me and sounds like it’s being whistled, while parts sound like the undead are chiming in (which may ruin it a bit, but anyway).  I also really like the vocals that start around 1:00.  This one makes me sad, but I still really like it.  I really wish I could whistle now.

            2. “Swimming Against the Stream” is played in some ocean levels and sounds very symphony-ish, if that makes any sense.  It is a really good song.  I just love it.  Sounds like a lot of string instruments.  I think it can really compete with real classical music.  Forget you, Mozart!

            1. “Lums of the Water” / “The Lums’ Dream” are two versions of the same song played in some ocean levels, the former a happier version played in shallower water, and the latter is a more sad version played in the deep water.  I couldn’t decide on which I liked better, so I have both here.  I love the vocals and the fact that sometimes it has an underwater sound.  I just love this song.  It’s one of the best I have ever heard.  Ever.

Nowhere to Duck

What Happens When Rayman’s Snoring Literally Wakes the Dead

About 10 years ago, I played “Rayman 2”, and it was awesome.  To my joy, “Rayman 3” came out.  It was fun, as well.  Then, they kept making these weird games that consisted only of mini-games, “Raving Rabbids”, that had these rabbits that apparently liked to scream a lot.  These games saddened me.  But not long ago, after an eight year wait, I was so excited to see that a normal “Rayman” game finally came out again.  That game was “Rayman Origins”, which I recently beat with all 246 Electoons.  (I was so proud of myself.  I really didn’t think I’d be able to do it.)

            This game is fun, sometimes funny, and very unique.  It has lovely, cartoonish graphics, strange places to explore, unique music, and lots of challenging levels, including a world with giant instruments and levels where you ride on a giant, pink moskito.  It’s also back to being a side-scrolling game like the original.  Throughout the levels, you must collect Electoons by freeing them from cages, by collecting enough Lums (usually 150 for one Electoon and 300 for another), or by getting through the level within a time limit.  You also learn a few moves, such as swimming (I guess Rayman forgot he could do this in previous games) and running up walls.  You can also play as different characters, like Globox and Teensies in a zillion different outfits, but you must get Electoons to unlock them.  You can also play the game with several people, but I never did.  Leave me alone.  Don’t touch my things!

            Story-wise, the game starts with Rayman and his friends snoring so loud that they woke the monsters in the Land of the Livid Dead.  The rest of the story is unclear, so I had to read about it elsewhere.  Apparently, all this caused the Bubble Dreamer (who is apparently important) to have nightmares, which causes Rayman to need to collect Electoons to help him, I guess.  (The story is a lot clearer in the other games.  I’m not sure why it was so vague this time.)  The game actually seems to end and the credits go by before you ever even reach the Land of the Livid Dead.

            After this, however, you then can get to the Land of the Livid Dead (which I guess is an extra area) and defeat the final monster, Big Mama, by collecting all ten skull teeth.  To get skull teeth, you must collect enough Electoons to unlock these certain levels.  In these levels, you chase this chest that is absolutely bent on escaping until it stops at the end and you can break it.  Man, that thing can run.  I guess I can’t blame it, but I wish it would chill out.  Simmer down, you silly chest.

            I did manage to finish the Land of the Livid Dead, which I’m quite proud of.  It was absurd.  (Way harder than the Land of the Livid Dead in “Rayman 3”.  And the dead really are livid here.)  After dying many, many times in the first section, I decided I wasn’t going to play much longer.  Just a few more tries.  Then, I completed that section, and I thought I could still stop at this point.  I’m sure I could redo section 1.  Then, I got through the first half of section 2.  Hmm, if I stop now, I can probably do it again.  I think.  But, I kept going.  Once I beat the second half of section 2, I knew there was no turning back.  No way was I putting myself through this madness again.  So after playing about an hour longer than I intended, I finished it.  It’s just one level, and I’m glad.  I can’t take anymore.  After a weird boss battle against Big Mama, even though she did me no harm (I felt pretty guilty about this one), they made me watch the credits again.  Why must they punish me?  You can now destroy the credits, which doesn’t make up for the crap they put me through.

            I absolutely love this game.  It is so different.  The music is some of the best I’ve ever heard, and the colors are beautiful.  I do have one main complaint with the game, though.  Other than the dubious plot, I think the game is a bit too hard sometimes.  I loved that this game challenged me, but I just don’t like when you must be perfect and know what’s coming ahead of time to get through things.  This isn’t always the case, but it can be for bosses and the levels with the skull teeth chests.  The game’s not impossible, just super hard.  Fortunately, there are no lives, so you can die a zillion times and keep trying.  (Believe me.  I know.)

            There is another thing that angered me quite a bit in this game, this time because of either a glitch or bad level design.  It’s the level called Pirate’s Treasure.  It’s one of those levels where you chase the chest with the skull tooth the whole time.  The screen follows the chest, and you die if you fall behind.  In this one, right before the end, you are jumping up between these two masts.  The right mast will break in half and fall, and the chest will continue right.  If you jump up wrong, the chest freaks out and zooms to the right, causing the camera to follow.  You have no way of keeping up.  I died so many times because of this.

            I went to Youtube for help, thinking I was doing something wrong, and I saw that lots of people had this issue.  So I watched videos and read comments, then, tested out the piece of advice given most often.  And it worked.  I was so happy.  When you’re ready to jump up the mast, let go of the control stick and tap the jump button fast.  Don’t hold it or anything.  It doesn’t seem any different, but Rayman jumps up the masts, the chest falls with the broken mast, you jump right, and the camera moves slowly.  You can then glide to the right, avoid the fire when you land, and run right and finish the level.  The day I beat it, I reached the mast five times, and the glitch happened only once.  (I kept landing on the fire the other three times I failed.)  So if you have trouble with this level, try this.  I almost guarantee it will work.  Forget all that stuff about not using spin attacks, changing characters, or deleting stuff.  I don’t think that makes a difference.

            But anyway, this game is a lot of fun.  I wasn’t sure about it at first because it was really weird and sometimes pretty frustrating, but now I really like it.  It was quite a challenge, and I feel quite proud of myself now for finishing it.  I would recommend it to anyone who wants something super unique.

Land of the Livid Duck

A Discussion on Why Rayman Might Be a Criminal

Video games often have you do things that wouldn’t make sense in real life, and usually we don’t question it.  I don’t even just mean the weird stuff, but the fact that we just direct our characters to go into peoples’ houses without permission, for example.  Or we attack creatures that do nothing to us.  The “Kirby” series comes to mind, as many enemies make no signs of aggression towards Kirby, but Kirby still attacks them.  What have the Waddle Dees ever done to him, aside from the fact that touching them is harmful (which makes no sense)?  It would be weird if you actually sustained physical harm from simply walking into someone, but then you still couldn’t just attack them.  And in “The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword”, Link sleeps in other people’s beds, for quacking out loud!  Have you no shame, sir?

            Now while I could go on and on, I specifically was thinking of instances in the “Rayman” games.  There are several times I can think of right now where Rayman seems to be more in the wrong than the enemies, which causes me to question our supposed hero’s own morals.  I have three examples.  And if you want to view the case against Rayman yourself, I have videos for the first two.  (I finally figured out how to include them in a post.)  Not the third.  It takes a while.  It can easily be found on youtube, though, if you wanted to see Rayman’s third crime.

            My first example is the mockingbird boss in “Rayman: Origins”.  It’s just sitting there sleeping, and Rayman goes up and pulls its hair or tail or something.  Was that really necessary?  After that, it goes crazy and starts to attack, which then apparently justifies us proceeding to pummel the thing.  Maybe then Rayman is acting in self-defense, but what reason did he have to attack the poor thing in the first place?  I would be freaked out, too, if someone assaulted me when I was sleeping.  That does not make me a monster.

            Next is the secret boss from “Rayman: Origins”.  This poor beast, ugly as she is, is simply painting her nails a lovely shade of green when Rayman shows up.  Then, Rayman jumps onto her arm, and she panics.  She then tries simply to get Rayman off of her, as we would struggle to get a bug off of our bodies.  Rayman has no pity in his (ice-cold?) heart of his, apparently, as he does his best to stay on her despite her best efforts to remove him, then proceeds to punch her in the face several times and eventually defeats her.  Is this really proper behavior for our hero?  Are we to believe that all things ugly must be evil?  I think not.  And yet Rayman’s behavior shows he feels otherwise.

            And some may consider this last a bit questionable, but I still feel Rayman is in the wrong somewhat, and I have the reasoning to back it up.  In “Rayman 3”, at the end of the Bog of Murk, Rayman proceeds to commit another crime by walking into someone’s mansion.  (Which is done repeatedly and without shame in video games.  Can heroes not knock?  Is that too hard?  Just because you’re on a quest to save the world from ruin doesn’t give you the right to violate the rights of others.)  Anyway, that is not what is questionable here.  Rayman is undeniably in the wrong.  You can’t just walk into someone’s house even though the door is unlocked.  Rayman.

            Some may still argue, though, in Rayman’s defense.  After all, the owner of the house, Razoff the hunter, apparently enjoys shooting at his visitors with a rifle and locking people in his dungeon, so we can conclude that this individual’s morals are in doubt, to say the least.  But, at the same time, Rayman still went into someone else’s house without permission, and thus I at least defend Razoff in that he has every right to shoot at people that come onto his property.  (I am not so sure if he can still make our hero into a “Rayman skin rug” for trespassing or stuff Rayman’s head and put it on his living room wall.  That may cross the line.  I don’t know.  I’m not in law enforcement.)  Nevertheless, Rayman still committed a crime deserving of punishment (such as being shot at, perhaps not stuffed), and then he proceeds to attack the owner of the house.  Maybe in self-defense, but perhaps Rayman shouldn’t have been there in the first place.  Hmm?

            So after two (actually, three!) accounts of assault and one of trespassing, I have concluded that Rayman is undoubtedly a delinquent.  While he does succeed in saving countless individuals from danger at the hands of such menaces as Mr. Dark and Admiral Razorbeard, he also causes the problems he seems to be against.  Should we not hold our heroes to a higher standard?  Just because of Rayman’s good deeds, that does not mean that he’s above the law.  No, I think Rayman should be held accountable for his actions as much as he should be congratulated for his valor.  It is only fair.

The Duck That Stands in Judgment of Rayman

100 Challenges

Anyone ever heard of the 100 theme challenge?  It can be for writing or art (maybe anything, really), and there are 100 words or phrases that you use for inspiration.  I did it for art a little over two years ago, before I started making pictures on Photoshop.  It was fun, but I did all fan art and started to hurry through it.  Very silly thing to do.  But, if done properly, methinks it could really help someone with creative ideas.  Open some metaphorical doors in the mind.

          Perhaps I should try it again.  I was considering using it to inspire some little stories, and maybe those stories could turn into bigger things.  Maybe it’ll even help with the novel I currently have occasionally simmering in my mind.  Don’t know yet, but I am at least pretty sure this challenge can help me come up with ideas I might never have thought of otherwise.  Hooray for inspiration!

            Anyway, I don’t really like most of the pictures I did, but there were a few decent things that came from the challenge:

For #8. Innocence, I drew Meta Knight threatening Kirby, while clueless Kirby offers him a flower.  Cute, I guess.

For #12. Insanity, I drew ZiM in his old man costume screaming at the sight of the Madness Dog.

For #27. Foreign, I drew ZiM on the street holding a sign that says, “I sure am a foreign kid who loves Earth!”  (It would make sense if you saw the show.  Because ZiM’s an alien…  Never mind.)

And #64. Mutitasking, ZiM is stealing a classmate’s brain while taking a test.  (Again, you have to see the show.  Specifically the episode where he steals classmates’ organs.  “Dark Harvest”, I think.)

          Wow, a lot of Invader ZiM stuff.  Mostly, there was Invader ZiM, Zelda, Donkey Kong, Kirby, Rayman, Banjo-Kazooie, and Kingdom Hearts.  Like I said, all fan art.  And they sound really lame when I explain them.  I really need to do better next time, if there is a next time.  …I wonder if someone could use the themes for creative snacks.  It’s the #58. Kick in the Head snack!  Now it’s the #97. Safety First snack!

The Duck Times 100