Rayman Origins now on PS Vita !

Posted on Wednesday Feb 22, 2012



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10 ways to… beat the game

Posted on Friday Nov 18, 2011

1 comment

10 ways to… die

Posted on Thursday Nov 3, 2011

The first Rayman is known for its incredible difficulty, which made finishing it quite an achievement. Will Rayman Origins be as hard?

This Rayman is both harder and easier.

At the time of the first Rayman, we didn’t playtest our games that much. That was a big issue, because game developers don’t know the real difficulty of their own games. They have something like hundreds of hours of flight, when a player is still learning to fly. So we end up with a quite difficult game, but we were not really aware of it.

In this one we playtested it a lot so that beginners could learn at their own pace. At the same time, a game for beginners would have been dull for veteran platformer players.
So we populated the game with a lot of (really, I mean really) hard challenges, that can be done, when you’re ready for it.

You say you want to be both accessible to beginners and challenging to gamers. How do you achieve that delicate balance?

We know that the range of skill between beginners and veteran players is quite huge.
So we’ve created the levels with those two “players” (the veteran and the beginner) playing it at the same time !
It means a lot of opportunity for both of them, scattered in the levels.

We also had to create a progression for both of those players :
One more about skills and bragging rights: the achiever levels where you end up chasing those crazy chests that take you in very dangerous places.
One more about surprise and discovery: the “explorer” levels where you defeat the electoon guards.

How many “lives” do you get in the game? Is there a limited number of “continues” as in the first Rayman?

Using “lives” seemed to us like a remnant of the “arcade era” when the designers needed to throw you out of the game after an average of 3 minutes of playing.
So we decided to get rid of those, and wanted to design in a more positive way: failure is less of a big deal, it’s just a missed opportunity to get something valuable, that you might achieve later, when you’re skilled enough.

Are there cheat codes in the game?

No but I’ve seen our QA testers do interesting stuff (like reaching seemingly impossible places) that we decided to keep in the game :)

How many times would you expect a gamer to die in the game?

Quite a lot and sometimes you’ll even die because of your mischievous friends.
But it’s no big deal, because you get better in the process.

Do you have tips on how to stay alive in Rayman Origins?

Go with the flow! In a sense, it’s a musical game, with its own rhythm. What’s interesting is that different players end up with a different melody :)

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10 ways to… get around

Posted on Wednesday Oct 26, 2011

How many different worlds and environments will we be able to get around?

There are 5 universes and 10 different worlds to discover. Additionally, we have the Land of the Livid Dead, which is a bit hard to reach but is a whole new universe as well.
At the beginning, each world is introduced one after the other. In each, you will gain a new ability and master how to use them.
Then after you complete the first set of worlds, you’ve grown enough to be dropped in the wild. Just like that a whole new set of worlds are revealed and you have a lot of places to discover at your disposal.

Will all these actions be available from the start, or will some of them be powers you unlock along the way?

At any moment, we give you enough abilities to explore exhaustively each world. So if you feel like playing a level again and again to discover every nook and cranny, it’s up to you.
However, you won’t have all your abilities right away. At the beginning of the game, Rayman and his gang are still incomplete heroes. They’ll need to find and help the fairies to get all their powers back.

Will running be an unlockable power too?

As a Game Designer, an important question is “how do you make gameplay better?”. In Rayman, it could be answered by “chain a bunch of acrobatic moves together faster and faster”.
So it was natural to give this ability right away, for all the players that dare to run in a minefield.

Will there be different “flight modes” as in previous Rayman games? (like the power to fly up?)

The best way to fly in the game would probably be riding on a mosquito. However, you’ll also learn quickly to glide. The glide ability allows you to fly in a number of different ways. At first it’s a very helpful tactic to extend a jump and land out of harm’s way. But we also put a lot of wind in the game, which can extend a glide to more of a flying action. But that’s not always a good thing. Winds are there to help or hinder you, push you to safety or towards a spikey death. Also, some enemies use the wind as traps and it should be noted that you’re not the only one who can fly!

So many different moves must require a lot of different animations, how many are there in Origins compared to the first opus?

Way more! Rayman and his gang have a lot of new abilities, so there’s a lot more animation. Besides having all the animations for the abilities, you have to create more animations for combinations and transitions between those abilities you have. So each playable character has more than 250 animations! I can’t even begin to count the animations of the evil characters, because they can be defeated in a lot of funny ways.

1 comment

Inside the dragon

Posted on Thursday Oct 20, 2011

3 comments

10 ways to… bubblize your ennemies

Posted on Thursday Oct 13, 2011



The fight system is very different from the first Rayman game, where possibilities of eliminating an enemy were much more limited. Can you talk about that?

In the first Rayman, the fight system was revolving around a simple attack : the charge attack.
It created a simple and interesting tradeoff for the player: The more you waited, the farther you would attack. It worked great. But it was static.

In this one, we’ve decided to have a more fast-paced game.
We naturally sought for attacks that kept your momentum, so that you could keep chaining acrobatic moves, never stopping.

Jump, slap, land, spin, run on the wall and kick some ass! It’s exhilarating.

So for every platforming move we had to invent way to defeat enemies without stopping the flow of the game. That’s where all this richness comes from.

How did you come up with so many moves and combos?

Our goal was to have players with very different skill sets be able to enjoy the flow of a platformer.
So we came up with different moves for different skills.
Begin with little punch, learn to kick in the air, and when you’re good enough just sprint your way spinning and taking out the bad guys.

Additionally, we accidentally (not really) discovered that slapping your friends was even more fun. So the set of attack moves just grew dramatically with all those new and creative ways to annoy your friends.

Can you tell us what is your favorite move and why?

The kick in the air is my favorite, it never feels old.
This move is central to the design of the game. It’s the key move in the learning process, one that transforms a regular platform player into an actual ninja.

Do the different playable characters have different attacks?

Yes there are subtle differences between each playable character, because we wanted each to feel unique. Since they have the same set of moves, it’s easy to switch from one to another when you feel like it.

Do the different enemies have particularities in the way they attack and in the way to eliminate them, as in the first Rayman game?

With this vast attack set, we allow the player to be quite creative.
As the game progresses, enemies become more and more challenging against specific attacks. Everything is still possible, but at your own risk.

Also, keep an eye out for some of the domino-like situations we have set up throughout the game. Players can really maximize the result of their attacks, strategically taking out several enemies in one shot!

There is no health bar in the GUI, how does the health system work in the game?

A health bar didn’t feel right in a game where you might lose all those hard earned “health points” by falling into a pit. So it was natural to limit those, and a great opportunity to get rid of the GUI. Instead we took the bubblizing approach. If you take a hit or fall into a pit you turn into a bubble. You can be revived by one of your co-op partners with a simple punch or jump. We also have placed hearts throughout the game which allow you to take a hit without turning into a bubble. Those will come in handy during some of the really challenging maps.

Sometimes, we can see lums coming out of enemies, either when we hit them or when we jump on their bubble. How does that work exactly?

In a nutshell, Lums are your score. We thought it made sense to reward the player with a lum for a well-executed slap in the face.

However, that was not enough, especially in co-op mode. If your friend is running ahead, you are left with fewer opportunities to kick ass. So Michel came up with the idea to bubblize enemies. It was great, because all of a sudden lagging players could finish those bad guys, and earn one of those happy lums too.

1 comment

Around the world

Posted on Tuesday Sep 27, 2011

7 comments

Rayman Origins @GamesCom

Posted on Wednesday Aug 17, 2011

18 comments

Tobuscus interview

Posted on Friday Jun 10, 2011

Youtube star Toby Turner aka Tobuscus came to Rayman Origins’ booth to play the game and meet Michel Ancel and Gabrielle Shrager.

As we could expect with such an unusual game and such unusual personalities, this results in a pretty unusual interview – check it out!


12 comments

E3 trailer and conference available

Posted on Tuesday Jun 7, 2011

Ubisoft’s pre-E3 conference is now over, and Rayman Origins’ presentation was amazing! If you missed it, re-live the whole presentation on Uplay or Youtube, and discover the game’s E3 trailer on Gamespot!

A new website was also put online, which will gather all the media and info on the game. Check it out!

11 comments