Ah look who’s back - it’s Rayman. This guy never seems to take a break, and he is back again, and this time he is going to run all over the place. With the success of games like Mario Cart it really is not surprising that Rayman would have it’s own racing title, but only if it was as fun as Mario Cart, this game would have been worthwhile.
This is not one of Rayman’s platforming adventures. This time around you are going to be racing around various tracks try to take on many difficult obstacle courses.
The single player mode had to be the most disappointing and uninspired portion of the game. In this mode, you will race against several opponents that really don’t have any significance to the game. There is nothing in the game that wants to keep you playing for more then a few races. Another problem with the single player mode is that it plays very slowly. The game is played at a very slow pace, which also doesn’t help the game.
The game is broken down into two main categories, these being racing and battle. There are two different types of racing modes, these are Time Attack and Obstacle Track. These two modes are really not too different, as they are played on the same track but just played out a little differently. In the Obstacle course mode you will race a certain amount of laps, and the first to cross the finish line of course would be the winner. As for the Time Attack mode this one can take a little longer. In the Time Attack mode you race and if you cross a checkpoint six or more seconds after the leader had crossed you will be eliminated. The last man standing wins.
The second main category is the battle mode. This is a little more inspired then the racing modes, but this isn’t much more fun. The battle mode has two different types these are Total Fight and Freeze Fight. Both of these modes are really pretty boring and won’t keep you interested for more then 20-30 minutes. Out of the two battle modes the Total Fight mode is the more enjoyable one. You try to attack your opponents as much as possible to rack up as many points as you can. At the end of the time limit the person with the most points wins, pretty simple.
The sound in Rayman is just kind of there. The music in the game goes on during the races, and it really doesn’t help the game. Each character has there own theme music, and whoever is in the lead, there music would be played.
If there is a high point to the game, it would have to be the graphics. Although there is really nothing overly impressive about Rayman’s graphics, they get the job done in an average fashion. Everything appears like you would expect them to but not done in very impressive manner.
Everything moves pretty smoothly, there are some nice effects. The characters look pretty good, and to put it simply this is the strongest point of the game, which should tell you something about the overall game.
The biggest problem I had with Rayman Arena, was that the game really wasn’t much fun. The game has a rather slow pace which really holds the game back from being any fun. The battle modes are slightly better then the racing modes, but for the most part is not the most fun thing in the world.
Rayman Arena really falls short in ever category. The uninspired track designs, the slow paced nature of the races and lack of gaming modes makes Rayman Arena an average title in every sense of the word. It really feels like the game was not fully completed, therefore I would only recommend this as a rental to only the die-hard Rayman fans.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.