PAL region PS2 box art
|Release date(s)||PlayStation 2
Rayman M, later released as Rayman Arena in North America, is a multiplayer party game developed and published by Ubisoft. It consists of two modes: an arena fighting mode, and a racing mode. It is a 1-4 player game, or one can play with 1 player vs. the computer. There are three levels of difficulty: Beginner, Pro, and an unlockable Master. There are also 4 cups to be won in both the Battle and Race modes.
Nine characters are fighting to go challenge the great champion of the competition. In Rayman M, there are eight characters fighting to win.
- Rayman: The hero of his land. Uses his hair to glide. He is the main character of the Rayman games, he may be somewhat small in stature, but he makes up for size with speed, agility, and a highly likable personality. His theme music uses some kind of banjo-like instrument and is a very catchy tune. He also has a skin of himself called Dark Rayman who is the main antagonist of the Xbox and Nintendo GameCube versions of Rayman Arena. Though it is only one of Rayman's skins, the game refers to him as Dark Rayman. It is the same as Rayman except for his appearance, which is drastically different from that in Rayman: A darker, almost black, purple shirt, with an "X" on it, fairly orange shoes, red hands, a yellow bandanna around his neck, and completely red eyes. He is unlocked by completing the Master Challenges. His music is the same as Rayman, because he's his skin (in fact, Rayman is the only character who only has one alternate skin). (GameCube/Xbox only)
- Globox: Rayman's dimwitted friend. Blows up like a balloon to glide. He makes appearances in many Rayman games. He may be daft and awkward, but he has spirit. His music includes a trombone, among other instruments.
- Dark Globox: On the Gamecube and Xbox, the player can unlock him. He's just like Globox but he is purple with a skull on his back. Another skin has a wolf on the back. He may look angry, but he is actually dumber than the actual Globox. He hangs on to an invisible purple lum to glide. His theme music is like a hundred singing frogs with a trombone like Globox. It was used as Globette's theme in Rayman Rush (not to be confused with Uglette, Globox's wife) .(GameCube/Xbox only)
- Tily: A small, furry fairy. Uses her wings to glide. She seems to be Ly's sister. Her tune is happy and fairy-ish.
- Henchman 800: A robotic pirate. Uses the jet on his back to glide. He is a Henchman for Admiral Razorbeard. His music is a rock tune.
- Henchman 1000: An older model of the robot pirate. He seems to be a pirate/gangster/cowboy/salsa dancer robot. Like Henchman 800, He uses the jet on his back to glide. His tune is a rock n roll/rodeo tune.
- Teensies: Two senile old dwarves that work together in a race. One spins the other around the other's head to glide. In Rayman 2 it shows that they forgot who the king was so they take turns wearing the crown, and being king. Their music uses a synthesizer.
- Admiral Razorbeard: Short in both stature and temper, Razorbeard is the robotic admiral of the evil robot pirates. Spins his arms around to glide. He was the final boss of Rayman 2.
- Razorwife: Razorbeard's awful wife, called Mrs. Razorbeard in the European version and the U.S. select screen. Flaps her arms around to glide. Her humorous tune is her dreadful opera singing.
Differences between versions
Rayman M had been released in Europe in 2001 for the PC and PlayStation 2. The PC and PlayStation 2 versions of Rayman Arena were actually Rayman M, only edited in very minor ways, most noticeably changes from Rayman M in the intro movie, load screens, etc., to Rayman Arena. The PlayStation 2 version had changed since Rayman M, though not by very much.
As there was not a port of Rayman M to the GameCube and Xbox, the development team had made several changes to the game and released it on the GameCube and Xbox platforms. A few notable differences would include:
- The menus had been changed; the space theme was gone and navigation was somewhat different.
- A single-player battle can only have up to 2 opponents (3 in a battle) at a time, unlike the other two versions where it was possible to have battles involving 3 opponents (4 in a battle).
- (Battle) The shoulder buttons/triggers on the GameCube and Xbox controllers were now used to lock-on to enemies.
- (Battle) The small circles representing health were replaced by six hearts. If a player is hit, a heart is "emitted" from the player's body, and fades away very quickly.
- (Battle) Hearts can be regained; killing an enemy results in the gain of another heart.
- (Race) Players are represented by the colours, blue, red, yellow and green, as players 1-4 respectively, while Rayman Arena changes the order to yellow, blue, green and red.
- (Race) A race can have three people as well as in Rayman Arena, all the single player races would have four characters in a track.
Change of name
The game was originally intended to be released in all countries. However, in some age rating systems, M is used to state that the game is for a mature gamer, causing the game name to be changed to Rayman Arena.
- Eddie Crew as Voice Director
- David Gasman as Rayman, Dark Rayman (Rayman Arena - Mac OS X/Xbox/GameCube version)
- Cindy Lee Delong as Teensie 1
- Jodi Forrest as Tily, Razorwife
- Martial Le Minoux as Henchman 1000
- Joseph Sheridan as Globox, Henchman 800, Dark Globox (Rayman Arena - Xbox/GameCube version)
- Ken Starcevic as Razorbeard, Teensie 2
- Billy West as Murfy
North American Rayman Rush game cover art
Rayman Rush is an on-foot racing game developed and published by Ubisoft, based on the Rayman universe. It features conversions of eleven race tracks, a slightly edited introduction movie, seven characters also character theme songs. However, it lacks the battles from its predecessors. It is a 1-2 player game, with the Championship mode and Lums mode having 2 characters running and 1 in other game modes. The game was released 4 months after Rayman M.
Rayman Rush features 8 playable characters, 7 playable in both Rayman Rush and Rayman Multiplayer:
- Rayman: The limbless main character of the game and series. He uses his hair as a helicopter to glide and likes to use his torso as a ball.
- Globox: Rayman's best friend. He blows up like a balloon to glide. While he might appear a bit awkward and clumsy, his oversized body hides a definite dexterity and fighting spirit.
- Globette : As shy as her husband Globox, she is yet a fierce competitor when it comes to racing. She blows up like a balloon and rotates her feet like a fan to glide.
- Admiral Razorbeard: Previously the main villain in Rayman 2, Razorbeard is the admiral of the robot pirates. He is always angry, irritable and mean. What he lacks in size, he makes up for in spite. He rotates his arms as a helicopter to glide.
- Henchman 800: One of Razorbeard's robot pirate lackeys. He glides through unknown means.
- Tily: A slight, fragile and impish little fairy who likes to perform kicks. She uses her wings to glide.
- Henchman 1000: An older version of the robot pirates, which came before the Henchman 800. He glides through unknown means.
- Razorwife: (called Mrs. Beard in the character menu): Razorbeard's wife, who has a more refined and fashionable appearance, though thinly revealing the same traits as her horrible husband, only worse. She rotates her arms as a helicopter to glide.
There are 5 game modes (only Championship Mode has multiplayer support):
- Championship Mode: The player competes with a computer-controlled character (or a second human player if multiplayer is on), to finish 3 laps before the opponent to win. One victory in Championship Mode unlocks Lums Mode for the same track. With multiplayer, the screen is divided vertically.
- Lums Mode: Only available once the corresponding level has been unlocked in Championship Mode. In this mode, many Yellow Lums are spread around the maps, which the player must compete with a computer-controlled character and win the 3-lap race. At the same time, collect as many Lums as possible. If the challenging player wins, the corresponding level will be unlocked in the Target Mode, Depending on the number of Lums collected, a time bonus for Target Mode will be awarded.
- Target Mode: Only available once the corresponding level has been unlocked in Lums Mode, a single player will race alone against the clock, shooting at butterflies that are spread around the level. Each butterfly shot gives extra time.
- Time Attack Mode: A single player will run one lap on their own. The aim is to reach the next checkpoint before the timer reaches 0.
- Training Mode: This mode serves only as a means of familiarizing new players with the tracks, allowing them to practice and master the game controls and tricks before a real challenge.
- David Gasman as Rayman
- Jodi Forrest as Tily, Razorwife, Globette
- Martial Le Minoux as Henchman 1000
- Joseph Sheridan as Globox, Henchman 800
- Ken Starcevic as Razorbeard
Rayman Arena has received generally mixed reviews. IGN gave the GameCube version a 4.7/10 and gave the Xbox version a 3.8/10 saying that it's not a great multiplayer game, while GameSpot gave both the GameCube and Xbox versions a 6.2 and the PS2 and PC versions mediocres saying that the four-player multiplayer has worn off, However Rayman M has received positive reviews compared to its American version.