The Colorful Characters of Rayman Origins
Rayman Origins arrives this month, giving the star character and his associates a fresh coat of paint. Since the game marks a new beginning for the series, showing how an immature Rayman is deemed a hero, a whole different audience is invited to explore 60+ levels in the Glade of Dreams. You don't have to revisit older Rayman games to experience Origins in full, but in case you're interested, below is a background check on five of the game's most prominent characters.
Created by French developer Michel Ancel, Rayman is video game's most famous limbless hero. A shortage of Lums (magical, colored balls of light that serve as currency in Origins) caused the defect when Nymphs conjured Rayman into existence, but the handicap hasn't stopped him from embarking on a quest to save the Glade. Rayman has plenty of tricks up his—well, at his disposal. He can helicopter through the air, sprint, wall jump, and kick and shoot enemies, to name several. The power-ups he'll gain will augment his various talents and physical prowess.
In Origins, players will be reintroduced to Betilla, the eldest of the nymphs who bestowed unto Rayman his extraordinary powers.
So where did the name Rayman come from? Ancel got the idea from the ray-tracing software Ubisoft was using during the development of the first game.
Globox might be blue, but he's considered a Red Wizard. So what happened to prompt the color shift? We're bound to find out in Origins, which reveals many other secrets about the Rayman universe and its characters.
Now Rayman's best friend, Globox was created as a joke by Polokus, renamed the Bubble Dreamer for Origins. Non-magical in nature, Globox has fathered over 650 happy children, with whom he lives, along with his mate Uglette, in a tree house. Both husband and wife are friendly, though Globox is somewhat more cowardly—especially when Robo-Pirates are nearby.
Although allergic, Globox gains special abilities from ingesting Plum Juice. He can, for example, burp giant bubbles and float into the air, bypassing difficult terrain. He can also generate rainclouds to put out fires or grow a plant quickly. He has a giant blue mouth and extra long, purple tongue, which he uses to gather and store things such as Silver Lums.
During the production of Rayman 2, the name Globber was scrapped for Globox. He's a playable character in Origins.
Originally known as Polokus, the Bubble Dreamer is the creator of Rayman's world, and his emotional attachment often impacts the way it manifests. A shape-shifter, the Bubble Dreamer pops up at various locations across the Glade, almost always chewing on a bubble-blowing pipe.
He himself was formed by Yellow, Red, Purple, and Blue Lums—we're promised to learn of the origin place of at least one variety, the Yellow Lums. In turn, he created the fairies, who themselves created the rare and powerful Silver Lums. The Bubble Dreamer then designed the Teensies, who bear knowledge of the Glade's most precious secrets. He also created other fantastic or simple creatures, such as Clark the Giant, who shaped the landscape with his strength. And if the world would ever need him, the Bubble Dreamer scattered four special masks throughout the land, which could be used together to awaken him.
Players will learn more about the elusive Bubble Dreamer, who prefers to dwell among his creations, in Origins, as Rayman tries to quell the nightmares that are causing dangerous disturbances in the Glade. For instance, otherwise good-natured Electoons have been imprisoned in cages and are morphing into trouble-making Darktoons (previously known as Antitoons).
An enormous purple mosquito, Moskito is the first major boss in the original Rayman. Now he's back as an unlikely ally, helping Rayman shoot down enemies from the sky.
Moskito shouldn't be mistaken for Bzzit, another giant albeit weaker mosquito who once assisted Rayman across a lagoon. In all likelihood, it's this confusion over the two identities and the mosquitoes' similar colorations that has led to this single merge of names and personalities in Origins.
Origins tells the tale of the super-villain Mr. Dark, who was the main antagonist and last boss in the first Rayman and quite the spell caster to boot. In that game, he stole the Great Protoon, a source of all energy in the Glade and unbalanced the stability of the world. As rumor has it, Mr. Dark might not appear directly in Origins, but fans will learn more about this mysterious foe.
Mr. Dark is no longer limbless, and in a trailer fans were given a brief glimpse of his normally shadowed face. Like the other Rayman characters, the villain has undergone an improved and contemporary redesign, though his name remains unchanged.
We've already talked about Teensies, Darktoons, Lums, and more, but look out for such creatures as the prickly Psychlops and the Hunters and their bully underlings, the Lividstones. Who knows what other members of the Rayman cast we'll meet in the latest 2D adventure from Ubisoft.
Do you like the revamped and reimagined characters of Rayman Origins? Which enemy or ally do you wish would make a cameo in the new game?