Rayman Legends Challenges App Overview
Last week, Ubisoft released the Rayman Legends Challenges App for free to Wii U owners via the Wii U eShop. Each day, the app will provide a new challenge using Rayman Legends assets. There are weekly challenges, as well, and everything is ranked on leaderboards.
The Challenges App comes with a lot of industry baggage. I won't get into detail here, but there are a number of reactions—both positive and negative—anyone could have to the app. Regardless, the leaderboards are healthy, featuring a large amount of people with varying gameplay skills from all around the world.
The challenges themselves are 2D platforming diversions. They vary, but none of them stray from the fun of contemporary Rayman; one asked me to collect lums as quickly as possible, while another was an endurance run.
They are diversions, though, in that they lack a focus beyond their objectives. In one vertical challenge, my job was to fall downward through an obstacle course and collect 150 lums as quickly as possible. Sometimes, I needed to slide along a vine horizontally, waiting for the right time to drop and collect a string of lums. Other times, I needed to hug a wall with the correct timing to collect lums that would spawn. Nothing brought the level together; it was a session of memorizing unrelated passages.
There was also never a reason to develop a strategy—the Challenges App is purely about reaction time.
With no themes at work and nothing to challenge my understanding of the gameplay mechanics, forgetting each level has come as easily as having fun. Granted, it is free, and you do get a fast-paced nugget of joy each day. The real fun was in pinning down my timing on every single jump, which turned some thirty-second stages into ten minute gameplay sessions.
Some challenges represent the touch screen stages from Legends; in those, I had to use the touch screen on the Wii U gamepad to move platforms, kill enemies, and generally just clear a path for Murphy, who runs and jumps forward at his own pace. Although these challenges are just as forgettable as the rest, I appreciate a touch screen-based escort mission that's fast paced. Normally, that kind of gameplay lends itself to slower paced puzzles, but here, my stylus was darting about the screen frantically. It's an interesting mixture of elements that I don't mind experiencing more, forgettable or not.