Rayman Raving Rabbids 2
Last year, Ubisoft brought us a super fun party game with hilarious rabbits. That was a big success, so it was a logical step to release a successor. Question is whether or not it’s still fun and most of all, can it match his successful older brother?
Let’s start with the good news: the rabbits are still absurd, perfectly animated and succeed in making you smile again. Moreover, the stadium where you had to move Rayman from one minigame entrance to another is thrown away. By using “trips” of six minigames to different parts of the world, the game is made a bit more fluent. You discover Europe, the U.S., South America, Asia or the tropics with each nine minigames that are mostly based on stereotype thinking of these areas.
The original Rayman Raving Rabbids made you unlock minigames in single player mode first, but now you can play everything with two, three or four players immediately. This way, the multi player mode is more emphasised. Even more, that’s why you should get the game, not for the single player mode. As it happens, some games are only fun if you play them with others. For example, a minigame where you have to balance a big burger and bring it to a starving godfather rabbid. Great if you play against each other and you can try to knock the other burgers down. If you play this alone, there aren’t even any AI opponents, so you just end up being bored and balancing burgers.
Also the online part has been improved. No more long code after a minigame. You can now use the Nintendo WiFi Connection and immediately see how good you did in comparison to the rest of the world. If you want to work with online leader boards, this is a good way.
Another addition is the huge amount of unlockables, being outfits for Rayman and the raving rabbids. That way, you are given the option to fully customize Rayman or your rabbit. It’s fun to have a look at, but you really have to love these things to consider this a real added value. You can customize even more by making your own “trips”, by choosing six minigames out of all the available ones. This way, you can mix your favourites and let all of your friends select theirs.
And now the bad news… Besides the fact that the single player mode isn’t really that attractive anymore, you can generally say that the minigames are less original and not so good as the previous ones. Of course, some of them are fun, like throwing pieces of paper to the teacher and blaming someone else, being a bus driver and slapping rabbids that don’t behave, doing the laundry and looking now and then if it’s clean yet, playing spider rabbid in the streets of New York, etc. However, there are also some bad and boring minigames. The volleyball minigame feels more like swinging the Wiimote and hoping you’ll be lucky enough to hit the ball. To win the race in the bags you should jump in a certain tempo to be faster but that just didn’t work well. Spinning a pile of plates feels a bit boring. Oh well, maybe we are just spoiled? However, it’s a fact that even within the fifty minigames in RRR2, there are a few very similar to not say the same – two times balancing burgers, two similar race games. Of course, this doesn’t help in making a good impression.
We have the feeling Ubisoft tried to focus a bit more on the Wiimote and less on the nunchuk and that’s a pity. The shooter minigames are now played without a nunchuk, to reload you press A on the Wiimote. Apart from that, the idea of using real video footage of cities like Paris and New York as a background is cool but somehow the result isn’t what it should be. Maybe that’s because of the slower gameplay – reloading takes longer – or is it because the background images aren’t funny? However, hitting the rabbids in the face isn’t so appealing as it was in the previous game.
The music games are back too. This time, you choose one of the instruments or you do the vocals. These are a little different in rhythm and difficulty. You shake the nunchuk and Wiimote at the right moment like you did before but now they’ve also added other movements like turning the Wiimote or nunchuk. It’s nice that you can recognise the rhythm of the instrument you picked and that you can really hear it when you’re doing bad. At the same time, this too feels just a tiny bit “not as good as the first one”.
Rayman Raving Rabbids is definitely not a bad game, especially not when you’re playing it with friends and you find the absurd humour of the rabbids hilarious. However, it’s clear this is a successor, one that’s unfortunately not capable of being as great as the original. One way or the other, it’s all just a little less fun.