Platform: Gameboy Advance

Genre: Platformer

Publisher: Activision

Developer: Digital Eclipse

ESRB: E (Everyone)

Released: Q3 2001

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Rayman Advance

Score: 8.7 / 10

 

Pros

- Great looking game

- Easy to get into for all ages

- Solid control

- Many levels

 

Cons:

- Doesn’t advance the genre

- More port than original game

 

 

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"RA is very playable and it’s easy to just enjoy a few levels as you’re waiting for dinner or need a quick videogame fix."

 

Cripes! Another cute platform jumper – this one starring a limbless guy named Rayman. While I love side scrolling platform jumpers as much as everyone else, what concerns me is the philosophical and metaphysical questions that a limbless man presents. After all, he has a head, torso, hands and feet that let him interact with the world (grabbing ledges, throwing long distance punches, jumping, etc.) but how does he do it? The answer is definitely locked somewhere within the collective mind of the designers, whom I expect have some interesting views on the nature of being and Chaos Theory. Either that or they just couldn’t animate his limbs properly.

Rayman-Advance-1.jpg (4946 bytes)          Rayman-Advance-2.jpg (6094 bytes)

Rayman Advance (RA) is a near direct port of the original Playstation game. Obviously there have been some graphical changes to accommodate the GBA’s screen, but the level design is practically carbon copy. The challenge had been turned down a notch from the PSX version, which will allow younger gamers a chance to have a really good time rather than instilling the desire to microwave their GBA. The challenge is still pretty good across the nearly 70 levels. The graphics are very well done. Animation also scores points but during some of the more intense sections there is some slowdown. Rayman just looks cool – this has to be from the novelty of a limbless hero. A novelty that (strangely) doesn’t wear thin.

Gameplay is straightforward. Rayman starts off with a limited repertoire of moves that gradually expands as progress is made. The moves aren’t complicated to perform; further emphasizing the demographic RA is aimed at. There is a useful save feature too, which in this day and age should be included in every game. Plus, you can go back to any completed level and try it again with new moves, allowing some replay.

Music and sound, while not on par with the PSX, are good but nothing that leaps out at you.

With all this said, you’d think I’d be less than impressed. Another cute platform jumper – big deal! But RA is very playable and it’s easy to just enjoy a few levels as you’re waiting for dinner or need a quick videogame fix. Looking good doesn’t hurt the game, but it’s RA’s accessibility that makes it a game that every fan of platform gaming should have. There’s a sense of fun about RA. People that still own Rayman for PSX won’t find much new here, but for the new generation of gamers, Rayman Advance presents some good wholesome gaming.

- Omni

(September 27, 2001)

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