View Full Version : Rayman Origins Community Hotseat - James Mckenzie

08-23-2016, 05:57 PM

The Rayman franchise has solidified itself into Ubisoft's history and there would be no celebration without it! Rayman is one of the most beloved characters is gaming history and has brought together huge variety of gamers. Who better to talk to than someone who is heavily involved with the Rayman community so make sure you keep reading to see what James had to say!

Tell us a little bit about yourself!

Hello, my name is James McKenzie. I am 18 year's old and I am currently living in South London, United Kingdom. I recently finished full time education and am going to start an Apprenticeship in Digital Media. I am a huge Ubisoft fan and a passionate gamer but outside of that in my spare time I enjoy meeting my close friends, travelling, photography, social media, and enjoying sports.

How did you first come across Rayman?

Rayman will always play an important part in my life. My first memory was my parents purchasing a PlayStation One and the first game I ever played was the original Rayman. The creative and quirky characters exploded with originality and I don't think I will ever forget the captivating and intriguing art and level design. It was truly magnificent and since then, I have followed the Rayman community in an unforgettable adventure, creating shared and unique experiences from Ubisoft's exceptional masterpiece.

I have followed the game in every adventure since his initial debut and over the years I have collected merchandise. Recently I also participated in the Official Rayman Page's Fan Spotlight. I was also involved in the Beta testing for Rayman Adventures on the Android Platform prior to release. As a gift for my 18th Birthday the Rayman Team from Ubisoft Montpellier send me a card and present signed by the development team and Michel Ancel himself!


What is your favorite feature of Rayman Origins?

For me, Rayman Origins was a really important game. Not only did it reboot the classic franchise, it re-invented it in quite an unforgettable experience. Personally, Rayman Origins is my second favourite game in the franchise and my favorite feature was the brand new Ubi-Art Framework Engine. It was developed by Ubisoft Montpellier and allowed artists and animators to easily create and use hand drawn content in an interactive environment.

Rayman Origins was one of the first titles to incorporate the new engine, this was a really vital part of the experience. When I first saw the E3 2010 trailer for I was blown away. The game boasted jaw-dropping hand-drawn worlds in stunning HD. The environments, characters, and minute details, something which the Rayman series are really well known for, was really apparent through the new engine. Every world and level came to life! I had an absolute blast exploring and immersing myself in every part of it. My two favourite worlds throughout the game have to be the Sea Of Serendipity and Gourmand Land. Following the success of Rayman Origins, it was truly fantastic to see the transition between Rayman Origins to Rayman Legends. Both entries to the franchise are phenomenal and outstanding games.

Who's your favorite character in the game?

Before I choose my favorite character in Rayman Origins I have to give some honorable mentions to some of my favorite characters. I think all the characters created by Michel Ancel and the Rayman development team are very creative, unique & special.

Some memorable favorites throughout Rayman Origins include: The Magician, Betilla The Fairy, El Stomacho, The JalapeƱo King, The Stone Man, Tricky Treasure Chest, Popcorn King, Mr.Swingman, The Electoons, and the Mosquitos. However, the character that stood out throughout Rayman Origins, Rayman Legends, and even the Rayman mobile games has to be the Lum King. I really love how lums just came to life when you caught the Lum King, he's a charming fellow. Even the Lum King's cheerful and catchy theme is something rather special. I even learnt how to play it on the piano!

What boss did you have the most fun defeating?

My favorite boss has to be Big Mama. The difficulty and challenge to actually reach the final boss was rewarding and exhilarating. My heart was pounding! I don't think I'll ever forget jumping on the arms and the back of a big huge pink creature, punching her pimples and knocking all her eyes off. It's an experience I'll never forget.

The music to accompany these final stages was phenomenal. Big Mama's Lullaby was utterly ridiculous and made every time I died just about acceptable.


If you had to choose one, which Fairy ability would you want in real life?

If I had to choose one of the Fairy's abilities it would certainly have to be Annetta Fish. I really love Swimming and am really good at it. To have the ability to swim and hold my breath underwater would be an absolute blast. I would love to explore the oceans and find what treasures and secrets lie at the bottom of it.

What's a memory from Rayman Origins that always puts a smile on your face?

My favorite memory throughout Rayman Origins has to be the "Tricky Treasure Chase". The levels were an absolute blast with friends and a challenging and rewarding experience. Even the music was fantastic. In every world throughout Rayman Origins there was always a Tricky Treasure Chest you have to catch in each environment.

I can remember playing a level one time with up to four of my friends we were in absolute hysterics because we just could not get the chest. Somehow or way we would always end up knocking each other off or getting each other killed. It was pure chaos. I would always recommend playing with lots of people as it makes the experience much more enjoyable. I hope Ubisoft will add both local and online multiplayer functionalities into future Rayman Games.


Any final words?

Rayman Origins is an absolute masterpiece and a thoroughly enjoyable game. The game is packed full of interesting, exciting, challenging, rewarding, and memorable content that would satisfy any player of any age or ability. It's easy to pick up and good fun with up to four players. For anyone wanting to pick up a copy, fan of the franchise or completely new, I highly recommend it. You don't know what you're missing. With it being 30 Years of Ubisoft's history, Rayman Origins will always stand out as one of Ubisoft's all-time classics.

08-25-2016, 10:26 PM
Thanks for sharing your story James! This is why we do what we do. :D

08-31-2016, 04:12 PM
Thanks for sharing your story James! This is why we do what we do. :D

Absolutely no problem! I hope you enjoyed the article.

08-31-2016, 04:24 PM
Awesome article about an awesome friend!
I really like this it makes us as fans feel that tiny bit closer to the devs.