About

Rayman is a video game series released by Ubisoft in 1995. It consists of a platform game where the eponymous main character, Rayman, fights and moves around thanks to his projectable hands. Its popularity led to many other games being released under the franchise, with half of them being spin-offs focused on the Rabbids, who first appeared as antagonists.

History

Rayman as a character was first created in 1992 by French artist Michel Ancel, programmer and graphic designer for the first game, for a new game to develop for Ludim├ędia (the former name of Ubisoft Montpellier). The character was intentionally cartoonish in design, with clothes and hair parodying the style of 1990’s fashion trends, and disconnected hands and feet (shown below). The game’s universe is similarly cartoonish and influenced by various fairy tales.

Originally planned to be released on the Super Nintendo, the first game was delayed in 1994 in order to be added to the brand new PlayStation library. It was initially released for the Atari Jaguar in 1995, and shortly after, Ubisoft released versions for the PS1, Microsoft Windows and Sega Saturn (seen below). Other versions appeared on newer consoles throughout the following years.


Gameplay

Rayman is a classic 2D sidescrolling platformer, typical of its contemporary games with its system of points, lives, collectible bonuses and a rescue or “save-the-world” story. It differs by the emphasis put on the playable character’s mobility, with permanent upgrades such as telescopic fists, the ability to grab the edge of cliffs and a rotor made of his hair (shown below).

Reception

The first Rayman game was well-received by the gaming community, becoming one of the best-selling video games on the PlayStation console. As of 2020, Rayman on PC has an 8.3/10 user score on Metacritic.

Following Games

In response to this commercial success, Ubisoft released many other games in the Rayman franchise, the first of them being Rayman 2: The Great…

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