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Dec. 19, 2006
Rayman: Raving Rabbids - PS2 Review
Release Date Distributor Developer Players Rating Difficulty
6/12/2006UbisoftUbisoft Montpellier1-4PGEasy
Save Size Sound Format Vibration 60Hz Mode 50Hz Border Widescreen

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Rayman goes skydiving.
Rayman is one of our all time favourite video game characters so seeing him return to the PS2 was a cause for celebration for us here at Rayman: Raving Rabbids is a bit of a departure for the series though. The game is no longer a platform based title, but rather a series of mini-games which can be played in either a single player story mode, or some multi-player hijinx.

The story mode starts out with Rayman having a picnic with some of his friends, the Globoxes. All of a sudden they get sucked underground with several lunatic looking rabbids taking their place. Next minute Rayman is snatched up, and placed in a gladiator styled combat ring which then acts as your hub to enter the series of mini-games. Yet again, it's Rayman to the rescue as he saves the Globoxes.

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One of the FPS games.
As we've mentioned this title is basically a series of over 70 mini-games. While some are similar to each other there's a tonne of variety here to keep you interested. How about Rayman having to do a hammer throw, but with a cow instead of a hammer. Or some FPS action set in the Wild West or on a lovely island beach. How about some races, with warthogs as your ride. There's just so much to do, and it's all tremendous fun. The only negative to the single player game is that the story, and this is despite being the 'Story Mode' is extremely thin on the ground - with gamers simply progressing from one mini-game to the next. There's no exploration or free roaming platform levels which is disappointing given the character's history. Then again, if they did include some platforming levels, we'd probably criticize the developers for not remaining focused on a single genre.

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The spraycan mission.
While single player is good fun, it's the multi-player where Rayman: Raving Rabbids really shines. Put simply these are the mini-games from the single player Story mode, but modified for multi-player (but no online gameplay sadly). Some of the games allow all four players to compete at once, others only a couple while other mini-games only allow for turn based gameplay. That's not a bad thing though as it mixes things up quite a bit and gives you a rest from the often intense button mashing or targeting.

What is very hard to convey in these screenshots is the humour in the game. Rayman has always been very solid in this area, but this game takes it to new levels, primarily due to the whacky antics of the Raving Rabbids. They run around screaming and attacking you from all angles, but they'll also dish out some punishment to each other (one mini-game sees you controlling an electron in a brain of a recently attacked rabbit. Should you win he'll exact revenge on his friend!)

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It's your choice!
As with any mini-game focused title the game does become repetitive after a while. Fortunately the enjoyment and variety will keep you entertained during similarly themed levels. Unfortunately given that the target audience is younger then your average gamer (hey, we're no spring chickens here but we loved the game), it is very easy. Most of the mini-games can be breezed through on the first or second attempt - the first giving you a few moments to get used to the game itself. It's also clear that some of the missions were geared for the Wii's motion sensing controls. One example of this is a mini-game where you have to retrace an outline as closely as possible. While it can be done on the PS2's analogue sticks, the point and shoot mode of the Wii's controllers would be much more accurate. Other annoyances include some loading between levels and also a highish price given the contents ($AU79.95).

Graphics in Rayman: Raving Rabbids can only be described as entertaining. The lunatic rabbits look absolutely stunning as they rampage through the many levels on offer. Sure, they're pretty plain, and animation is a little rough, but their mannerisms are superb. The backgrounds in the levels are also great to look at with some wonderful locations from the disco floor to the wild west, tropical islands to gladiator areas.

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The Raving Rabbids are hilarious.
Audio is just as whacky as the graphics. The screams and yells from the rabbits are hilarious, and the licensed music also manages to impress with tracks such as "Miserlou" and "La Bamba" only two of the many tracks on offer. The effects are a bit limited, and there's only Stereo sound, but overall it suits the game style perfectly.

Rayman: Raving Rabbids is about as whacky as any video game we've seen in the current generation. The mini-games are varied, and while some of them are obviously geared towards the motion sensing Wii controllers the port to PS2 has been handled as well as can be expected. A game which is set to provide quite a few multi-player thrills.

Review By: Dave Warner

Order your copy now from Gameswarehouse (PAL version) or Amazon (NTSC Version).
GRAPHICSTechnically not the best, but there's tonnes of visual humour here.
SOUNDSome nice music, but game needed more, and better quality, speech.
GAMEPLAYA series of minigames is what you get - and it's solid entertainment.
VALUE$AU79.95 is a little steep, a bit too easy, and lacks a decent story.
OVERALLRayman: Raving Rabbids is a great title - especially if you're looking for some multi-player mayhem. This is a pretty good companion to other Party Starter titles and is worth adding to your collection.

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