Rayman is a long-time running series that has earned its street cred over the years. I only started playing them as recently as Rayman Legends on Xbox One, but something about the games really caught my attention. Rayman Mini on Apple Arcade made me hopeful that it would be another whimsical adventure full of fun moments. Unfortunately, I was not prepared for Rayman Mini to disappoint and frustrate me as much as it did through its artificial feeling barriers and cheap feeling controls.
At a quick glance, Rayman Mini might look exactly like any other entry in the franchise with its cute characters, hand-drawn backgrounds, and fluid animations. But then as one gets to play it, we realize that no, you are not directly controlling Rayman or his friends. He just runs forwards, and the player gets to decide when he jumps or punches. Jumping at the right corners will make him make moves to collect optional things in the level. The worst part is this doesn’t even control particularly well on touchscreen or gamepads, in my experience.
This is a problem, because it makes the game very difficult to get through without making mistakes. With each missed timed jump or attack, we are forced to start from the beginning of the level. This sort of difficulty, to me, is the worst kind. The kind where there is no room for error on either the player or the machine’s fault, but the game isn’t designed well enough to recognize proper inputs.
Honestly, the fact I didn’t like Rayman Mini really bums me out. I’ve only unlocked the first ten levels and feel like I’m missing out on a lot because I’m just not skilled enough to get through. It makes me wonder if an easy mode would be appropriate for the game. The developers put a lot of work into making so many levels and collectibles, and I’m disappointed I won’t be able to see them all. For reference, there are forty-eight levels spread across six worlds, and across the three playable characters there are a ridiculous amount of appearances to collect.
Please keep making Apple Arcade games, Ubisoft! How great would an exclusive Assassins Creed game be on here? Would it be too bold to request a new Prince of Persia? Anyways, also please try to make them not as frustrating.
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