News Article

Rayman Legends On Wii U Is Still The ''Definitive Version'' According to Digital Foundry

Posted by Conor McMahon

The GamePad swipes, taps and turns its way to the top

Simply saying the name Rayman Legends aloud is enough to get a reaction from Wii U owners, but that reaction could easily lie on either end of a broad spectrum. On one hand it's a bitter development story many would like to forget, but it's truly difficult to deny the title's charm, imagination and sheer joyfulness now that we've had a chance to play it. In fact, a recent article by Digital Foundry even claims that it's best played on Wii U after all.

Versions of the game across Wii U and its contemporaries the Xbox One and Playstation 4 were compared in terms of graphical power, performance, and differences in gameplay mechanics, in an effort to decide which version could be considered the best choice. Analysis showed Rayman ran just as smoothly across all three systems, differing only in load times on the more advanced hardware but keeping to a solid 60fps (frames per second) across the board. The incredibly lively and detailed art-style may get a slight jump up with a little extra power, but the visual upgrades are apparently "close to non-existent".

Our review of Ubisoft's platformer mentioned how we felt it was a title best suited for Nintendo's system, and it seems as though Digital Foundry shares our sentiments. When it comes to sheer enjoyment, the usage of Wii U's GamePad is the defining factor.

It's the Wii U version of Rayman Legends that remains the definitive edition of the game, with the title taking advantage of the GamePad's unique features in ways that genuinely add variety and more fun to the gameplay. Let's not forget that while this game may have been ported to a vast range of different hardware platforms, it started out life as a Wii U exclusive, built around the unique capabilities of the system. Indeed, it's the Nintendo console that offers the experience that the developers originally intended for the game, before the last-minute switch to a multi-platform release.

Rayman Legends is a blast to play in any form, but in the end Wii U owners can arguably enjoy a more full-featured version unique to Nintendo's console. Mechanics may have been altered slightly to fit button-prompts on other platforms, but there's a sort of sour victory in stating that the GamePad simply does it better.

If you've played this title for yourself, and can possibly even compare it to other console ports, be sure to leave a comment below.


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User Comments (76)



AdanVC said:

Cool! I had a blast playing the Murphy levels with the gamepad and the stylus, they are really well designed and I don't think I could get used to play those levels without the touchscreen in other consoles.



MeWario said:

Being so used to Mario's physics I was lukewarm on Rayman Legends for my first hour or so - I just couldn't get the hang of controlling him. Then, suddenly, it all clicked and I haven't looked back! My entire summer has been spent playing it and I can't not tune in to play the daily challenges every day. Such an incredible game and one that I've played more than any other on the Wii U (including 3DWorld surprisingly).



cornishlee said:

After eagerly awaiting this as a "day one" title this time last year, I actually only downloaded it last week. I've just completed the main campaign and had every bit as much fun as I could wish for - I've remembered why I was looking forward to it so much.

I wonder if others have a similar story after the release debacle?



segasonicsteve said:

It is an amazing game... the closest a non nintendo made game has come to being nintendo like.. enjoyable from start to finish and quite rightly best experienced on a nintendo console!



Emblem said:

Digital Foundry ceased being reputable a while back for me but at least this is good news for a change .



JaxonH said:


It's good, probably second best, but no, it's not as good as Wii U version. Take it from someone who owns both. Main reason being, the gamepad has a bigger screen and stylus control for the Murphy Levels, but with Vita you have to use your finger. On such a small screen, cutting ropes at the precise point needed to swing Rayman left or right can be a challenging feat. Not an issue with a larger screen and precision of stylus. Not to mention, the game looks perfect on HDTV. Vita OLED is nice, but it doesn't best the big screen.



Einherjar said:

Many many more games would be "defenite" on the WiiU, if devs wouldnd purposly butcher these games down so that they end up being inferior at least content wise.
I would seriously be interested in an undercover interview with a person, sho can say something other that "its because it wont sell" because guess what, that is the reason why it wont sell.
Just look at Mass Effect on the WiiU. If we would have gotten the trilogy (no "engine is not supported excuse there, the PS3 versions are all running on the ME3 engine, and ME3 runs on the WiiU), it would have blown the other consoles versions out of the water. But you cant do that can you ? Its a nintendo console, you can not make the other two look bad by a "kiddy system" What a besotted industry it has become...



Jazzer94 said:

Seems Ubisoft disagree they claim the PS4 and One are the definitive editions.



larry_koopa said:


I agree with you. I thought that they disrupted the flow and pace of the game, even on the PS3 where Murphy is controlled with the circle button as opposed to the GamePad... the levels where you don't have to micro-manage more than one character are simply more enjoyable. The only reason the Murphy levels were even in the game was so Ubisoft could do something unique with the GamePad (in my opinion, anyways... not like they were in Rayman Origins).



daveh30 said:

And this is exactly why calls to drop the gamepad are misguided. If they would actually use the thing, it has the potential to offer a superior gameplay experience. Without the gamepad, the Wii U is just the underpowered console option.



element187 said:

I still cannot figure out why this game received such high praise. It's a 7 at best.

Thankfully I rented it. I would have purchased it last February regardless. The art style looked on par as Ren and Stimpy. Gameplay was pretty flat with zero difficulty. If a platformer doesn't have me rage quitting, then it's a terrible platformer.(I did finish the game and didn't find a single level challenging)



Slapshot said:

"Simply saying the name Rayman Legends aloud is enough to get a reaction from Wii U owners"

And the reason that this is even posted here.



MAN1AC said:

3rd parties showing Nintendo how to use that controller the right way, How did this game sell overall? I hope it did well because its one of the better games on the Wii U.



sub12 said:

I prefer the non-Wii U versions where you still control Rayman / Globox during the Murphey levels.



sub12 said:


It didn't do great sales wise, albeit not horrible, but neither did Origins, however, I think percentage wise, the Wii U version was the best selling in consideration of the install base.



DreamOn said:

After the Multi-Platform last minute switch I lost all consumer momentum for this game during the wait. But they tripled my February 2013 purchase right?



Emblem said:

@MAN1AC Best selling version but average sales overall across all platforms. I think actually think Game and Wario and Nintendoland are the best uses of the Gamepad to date, however due to their minigame nature most people ignore them. I do think the poor reception these two games received have negatively impacted on the amount of Gamepad interaction we have seen so far in terms of 1st party titles.

My personal favorite use of the Gamepad goes to another Ubisoft title with ZombiU, 2 player mode is absolutely awesome and its a damn shame ZombiU will never get a sequel as i really wanted the multiplayer expanded upon even if i found the main game to be weak and the Gamepad use too forced at times.



johndevine said:

@Emblem please tell me where you found Digital foundry to be unreputable. A link to the article in question would be good.

Rayman Legends is a good game. Best 3rd party title on console. Which is really refreshing for Wii U.

Indeed it really would have been great if it had remained as an exclusive.



aaronsullivan said:

For those who don't like the murphy levels I HAVE to believe that you are playing alone. On that I'd agree but with multiple players this game works great. No bumping into each other. No lives and delays yet very challenging. It's part of what makes it more fun for my family than Super Mario 3D World despite how full of cool things both games are. Too many delays in Nintendo's game. Walk to here walk to there. On Rayman our 4-year-old manages the GamePad and whisks us along from stage to stage almost instantaneously and plays Murphy most of the time. Stages without Murphy are fun but not as interesting. Nothing but frantic fun from the beginning onward.

I don't understand you. If you aren't rage quitting it's not challenging? The fact that this game eliminates the pointless retreads while pushing your skills to the limit is what I love about it. To each his own but I'd be surprised if you weren't in the extreme minority for enjoying rage quitting and slogging through the same boring sequence you already know to get to the hard parts so you can just rage quit again. Have you sought counseling on the matter? It sounds like the opposite of healthy and I hope most people try to enjoy hobbies without intense anger.



dumedum said:

It's obviously also the best since you can play with Mario and Luigi costumes, which are immediately better than all other options. Still need to play it.

@Einherjar ME3 has some amazing Game Pad use which makes it superior to all other versions.



sub12 said:

Yup, I was playing alone, hence I like other versions of the Murphy levels more, but I can see how it would be cool in co-op.

On that note, who here even played as Rayman?? Barbara the Barbarian was so much cooler of a character.



divinelite said:

Nice to see definitive version for wii u of 3rd party title
Now people just need to help them by buying the product



Agent721 said:

I bought it for $25 on black friday, but still haven't tried it. I'm finishing up SMW3D this week, but DKCWii u it's coming out on Friday & I have it preordered...I hate to say it, but Rayman may wait for later still!



DualWielding said:

The Wii U version is only better if you like touchscreen I have the Vita version and the only thing I hate about it are the touch screen levels, I doubt they are any better in the Wii U....



Rafie said:

I'm glad the Wii U is getting praise on this. The gamepad is the only reason it's received it's "definitive" title. It plays exactly the same across the boards on all systems. The Wii U and Vita (the worst 2 selling consoles) seem to be the best systems for this game because they offer things the other consoles don't. Good stuff, Ubi and Nintendo.

I have to agree with a poster above...if this would have stayed exclusive, my word! LOL



Samurai_Goroh said:

@ferthepoet They are indeed better on Wii U, thanks to the larger screen size, the precision of the stylus and the multiplayer co-op with friends which is the way these levels truly shine.



WaveBoy said:

Meanwhile, Origins was a 4 at best. Most overrated platformer in the past i don't know how many years. Gamers were too busy drooling over the artsy fartsy flashy visuals to even realize how poor the actual platforming was and mind melting tedious nature of it all. Having played countless platformers since 89' it doesn't even come close to ranking among the greats. I wasn't too keen on it's floaty controls and rythem based gameplay & stantionary enemies either.

It's sad, because the original PS1 Rayman was quite fantastic!



URAmk2 said:

I thought the touch screen stages were boring. So i picked up the PS4 version today. No load times, Sharper graphics, twitch support & trophies are more my style. Good game though.



rjejr said:

Still havent played this one due to bad timing. May pick it up soon though, its a long barren wait for MK8.



WaveBoy said:

Wait, what? Sharper graphics? Why on earth would they be sharper?
I've always got the impression that the PS3(and now the PS4) got the nasty 'soft' look for multiconsole releases which has been the case over and over again with Resident Evil 5(Looks terrible on PS3 vs the ultra sharp xbox 360 version which has proper contrast to boot) ghostbusters, bioshock ect ect.



jakysnakydx said:

I don't feel Legends had the same physics polish that Mario games have. In truth Rayman Legends could never have any of the pinpoint precise levels that Mario does because controlling Rayman can be so finicky



sumofeet said:

This is nice to hear, I have a ps3, but I've been saving the RL purchase for the WiiU. I had a feeling it would be a funner experience.



sumofeet said:

This is nice to hear, I have a ps3, but I've been saving the RL purchase for the WiiU. I had a feeling it would be a funner experience.



sub12 said:


I bought my other version on today's PS4 release today, the graphics are comparable, but I agree with URAmk2 that the hues and colors pop a bit more on the PS4.



WanderingPB said:

I find it amusing that this little "test" was even done in the first place. Rayman Legends is a really beautiful platformer period regardless of the decisions Ubisoft made. And as for the best use of the gamepad I respectfully disagree because Zombiu to me used the gamepad fantastically and immersed me in that games world. It is funny that some talk about the gamepad features but still dont own a WiiU pretty funny if u ask me.

Maybe instead of talking definitive versions how about we make believe we buy gaming consoles to gave fun playing the games we like on them but then again what would happen to all the trolls right LOL!!



blinkpunk02 said:

@jakysnakydx The levels in Rayman Legends where you have to full-out run or make your way upwards as the surroundings are falling require some of the most pinpoint-precise platforming I've ever played.



erv said:

This game is awesome. You can pick it up for a steal, even in the eshop. I'd recommend everybody do that - it's beautiful in every way and lots of fun.



Luffy said:

played it today. still not done Origins so i pick it up now and again to finish it. 500/700 so far.



bofis said:

I agree entirely that the WiiU version is the best, and possibly the best use of a touch screen for a platformer yet.



Andross said:

@JaxonH Yes, but on the other hand, the game looks better on the Vita oled than on the Wii U gamepad, and you don't have to constantly switch between high res and low res screens when you play (hdtv and gamepad), which can result in a less smooth gameplay experience. And while the larger screen on Wii U pad can makes it easier to play the Murphy levels, the Vita screen can feel more responsive (capacitive vs. non capacitive). So both have their pros and cons.



Dauntless said:

Games like this are the ones that deserve the sales figures that COD gets. Sadly a lot of people will over look this masterpiece.



Kolzig said:

Well, it's a game that was designed especially for Wii U, so I'm not surprised that the Wii U is the best version.

Michel Ancel and his team really made a great game and it is truly a shame that it has not sold more.



ULTRA-64 said:

@rjejr I'd definitely recommend, it's my favourite Wii u game , bar none ( I have over 20 now). There have been other games that used the pad well, great platformers and great art styles but the fusion of all in this is sublime!!
I had never played rayman before the demo but it sold it to me and I picked it up without expectations and was nothing but impressed. The co op is the best I've played in a platform game by a massive margin( I'm on the fence on dk:tf due the poor sounding co op) and the gameplay and level design blew nsmbu out of the's so cheap now the value is amazing!



R_Champ said:

The touch levels are just OK, IMO, when you're playing Solo. But when playing Multiplayer they become a LOT more fun (and would be the reason I'd agree the Wii U version is definitive)...even if you're just moving platforms right before your buddy jumps on them, mwahaha.



Kosmo said:

I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who didn't like the Murphy levels. WHoever plays with the Gamepad in those levels gets bored, and the others have to wait to coordinate with him. They are terrible levels breaking the flow of the game. When I wanted to re-do the game, I actually didn't because of the Murphy levels. The Origin levels were much more enjoyable because they were uncluttered.
Also, past the element of surprise, there's not much. Rayman Legends is clearly not a game you can enjoy more than once. The levels are not hard, or imagnative, the secrets aren't well hidden, and 100% completion is easy. It clearly doesn't stand up to any Mario game. Clearly, if I want a frantic multiplayer platforming experience, I'm picking Super Luigi Uover it.
So, sure, the musical levels are genius, but there are only 6 of them, and when you know them by heart, they lose interest. And the challenges... same thing: only five, get old quick.
For me the best 3rd party effort on Wii U is Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. THAT'S a game you can over and over.



jenkje said:

Agree. I first played through the PC version but I downloaded it when I bought a WiiU and it was an awesome experience. A true classic....



JaxonH said:

I've never had an issue with the Gamepad screen being unresponsive. It's actually very sensitive, particularly with a stylus.

And switching from the hdtv to gamepad doesn't feel like some large difference. Not an issue at all really. The small screen doesn't look as good as the tv, but it's not like jumping into a retro game or anything.



AJWolfTill said:

@XFsWorld @sub12
Did either of you play those in multiplayer? The Murphy mechanics make for some of the greatest Co-op gameplay I've ever experienced but it feels a little wierd with an AI buddy.



URAmk2 said:


This was a joke post right? I really hope so. Name one game out of the current gen consoles (WiiU, PS4, XBO) that didnt look better on PS4. Also please post your source on PS4 games having as you stated "the nasty 'soft' look for multiconsole releases". Ill wait. The fact that you compared the PS4's cross platform performace to that of the PS3 vs 360 shows youre misinformed. A quick google search will help you. Not taking anything from the Wii U version it still looks, plays great & alot of people enjoy the gamepad levels ( i just personally didnt).



Sonic_Phantom said:

I'd recommend the demo to anyone. I knew nothing about Rayman but tried the Legends demo and realised I was missing out!



alLabouTandroiD said:

I'd still love if Ubisoft gave us a patch that enabled us to play though the Murphy levels without the GamePad. At least after you beat them with the GamePad once. Then it definitely would be the definitve version. Maybe.



FiveDigitLP said:

@MeWario See, it's funny, because I've slowly realized that I don't like Mario physics as much as I used to. Rayman just feels so if my character is just gliding along.



dumedum said:

There are no sharper graphics on the PS4. It's the same exact graphics. Digital Foundry confirms this. If anything, it's a little better on the Wii U.



URAmk2 said:

Oh really? You must have read a different article than everyone else.

"The power behind the Xbox One and the PS4 allows us to display the game’s textures without any compression on these consoles. This makes the game’s visuals even sharper than before and will allow players to see even more of the details and nuances our artists put into the textures of the game. These uncompressed textures highlight the hand-drawn style of the game’s visuals."

Try harder next time...



rjejr said:

@ULTRA-64 - Yeah, we need to pick this up. We've been waiting for DKCTF but the co-op does seem a little iffy. And the difficulty seems a little - uh, difficult - for my kids to enjoy. Might use my B2G1 Gamestop coupon on this, SMG2 and Kirby Return to Dreamland.



Samurai_Goroh said:

@URAmk2 So, you take the word of Ubisoft, who is trying to sell you the game (no conflict of interest whatsoever, lol) as gospel, and disregard the presumably unbiased critics, in this case, Digital Foundry?
Ok, then. Nice to meet you. I have a bridge you'll want to buy.



URAmk2 said:


It's funny that article from Ubisoft was linked directly from the DF comparsion. If you took the actual time to read the DF comparison you would have noticed that. Since your not fimiliar with google or you're just in pure denial ill help you.
"The PS4, Xbox One, and PC versions of Rayman Legends look the same as the rest, except at a higher resolution"
"These PS4 and Xbox One versions of Rayman Legends offer better graphics rendering while eliminating all loading times"
"Ubisoft has been able to display the game's textures without any compression. The results are immediately noticeable as sharper visuals allow for even more detail while highlighting the gorgeous hand-drawn style of the game."

That bridge selling buisness must not be working for ya. Try harder next time kid



jakysnakydx said:

@blinkpunk02 It's true Rayman required it but what I'm stating is that it failed to execute. Whether or not the game expects something of you and whether or not it is actually developed in such a way that it always allowing that to happen with accuracy and/or precision are very different sides of the same coin. Any programmer can expect the player to accomplish a certain task but if the game itself does not guarantee a certain set of commands and expectations then its near impossible to accomplish said task. My struggle with Rayman was "Ok, it wants me to jump just a split second after that torch" then when I jump a split second after that torch it was then too far.. not just a little too far but SIGNIFICANTLY too far as though I should have jumped three torches ago. If a game wants precision it has, absolutely has to give the player confidence that when they insert a specific set of inputs a certain set of outputs will occur. I NEVER knew what pressing the jump button would bring when playing Rayman. It was just trial and error.... let's see when the game actually decides to cohere to a set of principles.

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