One of the surprise titles of the Wii's launch was Rayman Raving Rabbids. This bunny infested title took the Rayman franchise in a direction its never been before; away from adventure, and into the realms of mini-games. If you've read my review, you will know I thought highly of this game.
So when, almost a year on, I am told that I'm going to London for a Rayman Raving Rabbids 2 Community Event, I was pretty darn chuffed...
Up bright and early, David and myself set off for central London. After a full English breakfast and a bit of getting lost, we arrived at the Nintendo flat where we were going to play Rayman Raving Rabbids 2. Straight away we were welcomed by friendly faces, tasty food (which we nobly ate), and a Wii with Rabbids 2 ready and raring to roll.
After watching the hilarious introduction to the game, David and Myself got straight into the action. At first we were expecting there to be separate sections for the multiplayer games and solo player mode, as in the last title. But to our delight we found that the entire game, including the main tour mode (which spans across several continents), can be done in multiplayer. In fact, most of the games are geared towards maximum enjoyment with 4 players. As expected, there is a competitive side to this multiplayer tour mode; each player is given points based upon where they finished in the game- The winner gets a shiny medal, the loser gets a bog roll and a coconut to the face.
We played through the tour mode a couple of times, choosing a different country (with their own themed games) on each occasion. I can't remember the exact scores of the games, but I'm pretty sure I comprehensively beat David on each and every occasion*... by a country mile no less!
*slight fabrication of the truth
A short while later we were joined by Lauren from Destructoid, and the multiplayer mayhem really kicked off. We waltzed through the tour mode and dominated the shooting levels, barely stopping to get some grub. And the more we played the game, the more goodies we unlocked- including a hilarious selection of costumes for Rayman and the Rabbids. Seriously, some of them are priceless! What we were very surprised (and pleased) to see is that Ubisoft haven't cheekily recycled mini-games from the previous installment; its mostly brand-spanking-new content in Rabbids 2- except for the shooting games, which still totally rock! Best of these new games is the Guitar Hero style sections where you perform on-screen actions in order to create some Rabbid covers of popular songs.
When it finally came to the end of the day we were presented with a whole host of Raving Rabbids goodies; including several t shirts, some stationary kits, a Rabbid noise box (one of which constantly went off on the train journey home- not making David and Myself the most popular people on-board), and a fantastic Rabbid plush toy. And the best part of it is; we'll be giving this merchandise away in a forthcoming competition! So be sure to keep your eyes peeled for that one!
We also tried to pry some information out of Chris about the forthcoming Assassins Creed DS game, and the prospect of further Rabbid titles- not to mention whether there would ever be a Beyond Good and Evil 2! Alas, he was not at liberty to disclose any of that information to us, asides from the fact that Assassins Creed DS will be different in some way from the console versions. He also told us there is no known movement to make BGE2 at this moment in time... oh well, we can still dream.
So back to the main event.... While we didn't really give the single player mode a whirl, its clear Rayman Raving Rabbids 2 has surpassed its predecessor in almost all areas. It looks nicer, players with more precision, and it perfectly tailored to simultaneous multiplayer gaming. I can honestly say that I haven't had so much fun on a multiplayer Wii game, ever. We will get a full review of the game up in the next few days.
Remember everyone, Rayman Raving Rabbids 2 is out in your local games stores this week! Stay tuned for our review coverage of the game, and our fantastic Raving Rabbids goodies give-away competition!!
Finally; I'd like to take a moment to thank Chris and everyone from Ubisoft who were the perfect hosts for a perfect day of gaming- The effort you guys put in to making us feel welcome was fantastic. We sincerely hope we will be returning to see you all again at some point.