Rayman 3 Review

Developer: Gameloft Publisher: Gameloft
Release Date: December 16, 2003 Also On: None

The Nokia N-Gage has a serious lack of platform titles. It is the platform genre that has helped determine what systems succeed and fail. The N-Gage version is developed and published by Gameloft, making it a version exclusive to the N-Gage. They might as well have called this Rayman N, because it has no connection that I know of, to the console versions, and would be more fitting as a follow-up to the original, which was also 2D.

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For the sake of keeping our sanity, we’ll skip the story. Simply heed my advice: collect as many yellow lums as you can in each level, destroy crates, and hit switches, and you’ll be alright. You have a few moves at your disposal from the beginning, including run, climb, jump, glide, and punch. While on the topic of controls, I would like to say that for the most part, they are responsive. You’ll rarely encounter an area where you will fall to your death unnecessarily due to bad controls or the lack of computer response to a command.

You’ll earn double punch, which will be used to knock over large rocks, a power-up punch, which goes farther than a normal punch, the ability to swing, and the ability to fly. The fly ability only works with blue lums and a meter will show you how much longer you can fly, before you need another blue lum.

The boss battles, at the end of each of the game’s four worlds, are much more memorable than ones in say, Spider-Man 2. In the first boss battle, you’ll have to pick up a barrel, walk towards the boss who is shooting things at you, throw the barrel vertically to hit the projectiles, catch the barrel, then continue until you hit the boss with the barrel. The game’s charm isn’t just in boss battles either. This kind of gameplay is found throughout the entire game.

It should be said that an average gamer will find the later levels rather frustrating, and any newcomers to gaming should probably just avoid this game, unless you’re willing to shell out the money for the first half, because the second half is brutally hard. I’m a platforming pro, it’s one of my favorite genres, but Rayman 3 threw me through the loop at times.

The way it is set up is, once you beat a level, the game saves. The problem is, some levels have two or three areas to them. If you run out of lives, you have to restart from the area that you were on. However, if you quit, your progress in the level is lost, and you must restart on that level’s first area.

The levels themselves are reached by entering one of the many “curtains� in each world. The worlds themselves are large, somewhat open-ended, and will offer a few small obstacles, but it is more of a gateway from level to level than anything. Here you can try out new moves earned, and also are required to use them to reach levels. For instance, when you earn the “wall climb�, you’ll have to use it to continue on your journey through that world.

The graphics in Rayman 3 are some of the best 2D visuals I’ve seen. The graphics are bright, the colors are vivid, and the scenery is lush. The animation is full and the levels are complete with backgrounds, concentrations of obstacles, etc. This sets the standard for N-Gage’s graphical capabilities.

Rayman 3 for the Nokia N-Gage is some of the best platforming that I’ve encountered in probably a year or more. My biggest complaint is having to replay some levels upwards of five or more times to just reach the goal, not even including attempting to collect all of the items. I guess I would call that artificial game length, but this is not much to complain about, since this will last you no less than 10 hours. A multi-player feature was added, but due to the fact that I do not have more than one N-Gage in my possession, I can not comment on this area. This won’t shift N-Gage units, but this is a definite purchase for those that are proud N-Gage owners.

Graphics: 9.5
Sound: 8
Gameplay: 9.5
Creativity: 8
Replay Value/Game Length: 9
Final: 9.3
Written by Kyle Review Guide

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