After the somewhat shocking delay of Rayman Legends for the Wii U, Ubisoft needed to extend an olive branch to Nintendo fans. Yesterday they did this by launching the Rayman Legends Challenges App, which is free on the eShop. The game comes with two challenges, each one is unique, and the plan is for Ubisoft to release weekly/daily challenges, presumably up until the game's release.
So is it an effective Olive branch?
Good God yes!
Each challenge plays different to the last, some have you play as Rayman and handle as you would expect a Rayman game to handle. In other words the controls are spot on, the platforming is fantastically inventive and there is a good mix of combat and platforming. Other challenges have you playing as Murfy and make use of the touch screen and motion controls as you slap people, tickle people, drag objects and many other things. Whether touch based or not the controls are intuitive and spot on, just as you would want from a great platformer.
At the end of each challenge you are given a trophy of bronze, silver or gold depending on how many points you earn during the challenge. This provides for plenty of replay value, unless of course you are great at platformers and just get gold on your first try. As well as all of this it also features off-TV play. Playing with the TV on shows the game on both screens but if you turn the TV off or onto another channel the game continues on the pad. I can't emphasise enough how useful this is if you share a TV.
Though gameplay always takes centre stage for me it's the graphics and sound of this game that truly make it wonderful. The art style, crisp HD visuals and spectacular soundtrack give the world of Rayman Legends a serene beauty the likes of which I have never seen in a game before. Games are an art form and that has never been as true as when applied to Rayman Legends. This game is stunning to look at and great to listen to.
Ultimately Ubisoft have done it, they've appeased me enough to not hate them for all eternity for delaying Rayman Legends. Of course they could pull support for this app which would make me hate them again but we'll see how things go. In the meantime this is a great game that is totally free. If you have a Wii U then go get it.