Whittling down Michel Ancel’s fanciful Rayman Origins onto a portable device was always going to be a tough challenge. The PSVita coped admirably with that task, retaining the heart and humour of the original whilst adding enough new ingredients to make it feel like not-such-a-direct-to-handheld-port. However this isn’t the PSVita… and this isn’t Rayman Origins…
Yes, a Rayman game worth bragging about has finally hit our iOS devices and without giving the game away too early, I can’t help confirm that it’s an absolute belter. At first glance I thought Ubisoft and Pasta Games! had done a Disney and copied Temple Run’s ultra-addictive format and just adjusted it to fit their primary franchise, but – fortunately for us – that’s not the case and Rayman Jungle Run plays like the best parts of its console-based predecessor mixed with the craft and care of some of the App Store’s biggest sellers.
Without an actual narrative to speak of, the main jist of the game is as follows: Rayman is doing his usual thing by speed running through the faery glade (40 fantastic, whimsical levels full to the rafters with platforming goodness may I add) trying to earn those bizarre teeth that pop into the empty gaps in his friends’ teeth. While he’s not being a makeshift dentist, Rayman will be jumping, flying, punching and wall-running his way to exclusive bonus levels in Ubisoft’s autorunning gem, thusly broken down with a menu format similar to that of Angry Birds. If you can avoid death, however, you’ll easily breeze through the game in a couple of hours – as each level has a goal that, once reached, launches you swiftly on to the next. The devil is truly in the detail here, as a full house of “lums” will grant you those bonus teeth (which basically means is that you’ll be spending a lot of time replaying levels over and over until you perfect them to the max).
Whilst the game is easily one of the most engaging, colourful and modestly price platformers available on the app market to date – I did feel as if Jungle Run would have benefitted from the trademark, creative Rayman boss battles that Origins was so successful for. Not too many, but just a few to break up the games overriding concept.
All in all, if you’re a fan of the recent entries to the Rayman series you’ll have no complaints here. A perfect blend of creativity has been implemented in order to make Rayman work properly on our iOS devices and, complete with a charming soundtrack and timeless longevity, this is one of those games that warrants its place up there alongside the greats. Right on, Rayman.