- This article is about the main character of the series, Rayman. For the first Rayman game, see Rayman.
Rayman is the main protagonist in the Ubisoft video game series of the same name. He is the creation of French game designer Michel Ancel (who had first designed Rayman in the early 90's), and with his trademark lack of limbs and Helicopter power, he has become a popular and recognisable video games character over the past decade, making his debut in 1995 on the Atari Jaguar and appearing in several titles up for many different platforms until the present day.
|Appears in||Rayman, R2, RR, M, R3, RRR, RRR2, RTAS|
Rayman was originally designed to be just an athletic character and to have a full body, but because it could not be fully rendered even on games consoles in the mid-90's, he was left without arms, legs and a neck - his hands, feet and head float around his body. He has a huge round nose, and has strawberry blonde hair which he divides into two (three in Rayman) fronds that are held up to resemble ears. He often uses this as a helicopter, and sometimes to fly whenever he is able to. His eyes are dark blue in colour, though in most official artwork they are coloured black, and two pictures in Rayman showed him with lighter blue eyes. While Rayman is unique in most of the games, other members of his species are seen in Rayman, notably the Magician and Tarayzan.
Rayman is almost always seen in white gloves and a purple shirt with a mysterious white ring on the chest, which absorbs energy from the Fairies and connects to the altars of the Four Masks of Polokus in Rayman 2. Up until Rayman 3, he wears a red neckerchief, which was then replaced with a red hood. He also wears shoes that are typically yellow and white, though the actual designs change throughout the series. Rayman Raving Rabbids is mostly where he is seen wearing different clothing that sometimes looks like he has knees, such as the Disco costume.
Rayman is a very laid back character, as he is often seen snoozing either on a hammock or up against a tree, but he is also very athletic and shows great gymnastic skills, especially since Rayman 2. He is also strong enough to carry things such as plums, kegs and even Baby Globoxes. However, he started out as a poor swimmer, as in the original Rayman he would lose a life the instant he'd fall into any body of liquid, but he soon develops this skill fast by the time Rayman 2 is set in. In Rayman Revolution he is taught this by Murfy and a Baby Globox.
Rayman's true personality isn't very well looked into throughout the series, though most of the time he is a cheerful character with a good sense of humour. He is also very helpful, and is willing to take on whatever challenges face him for the sake of the safety and harmony of his world. Sometimes he can be a little childish, especially in Rayman 1, as he often pulls grimaces as a form of defence. Lately though he has become somewhat self absorbed, especially in Rayman Raving Rabbids, as the Rabbids start to treat him like a celebrity during his captivity, though he remembers and worries about the Baby Globoxes that he left behind. That however seems to be put behind him as the Rabbids continue to harass him in Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party.
The Original Story of Rayman
Very little is known about Rayman's early life, though in an early advertisment for the Jaguar version of Rayman, the story told of a young boy named Jimmy that had been sucked into a world he had created on his computer called "Hereitscool", and transformed into the limbless wonder. This original plot was pulled from the final product, and Rayman was instead made to be the guardian of his world. However, it is unknown as to why exactly Rayman and all of the other characters in the first game are limbless other than for technical reasons.
Rayman is first seen having fun with the Electoons in his peaceful world, until Mr. Dark comes along to kidnap the Great Protoon. He was then seen asleep in a hammock, where he lazily speaks the words "No problem", in response to his calls from the Magician to save the world from the terror caused by this mysterious villain. At that time, he apparently lived by the sea in what looks like a shipwrecked boat, though his home is never fully seen. He then travels through six different lands in search of Mr Dark's Dare, where he challenges and defeats Mr. Dark and his hybrids.
Rayman the Teacher
Main Article: Rayman Junior
From 1996, Rayman appeared in several educational computer games designed especially for children, notably a remake of the original Rayman in which the player has to solve several reading and mathematics questions throughout modified versions of the original levels. This game had several names, and was later released for the PlayStation in 2000 as Rayman Junior.
Other educational Rayman games included the following:
- Rayman Brain Games
- Amazing Learning Games with Rayman
- Rayman Activity Center
- Rayman Premiers Clics
- Rayman Éveil
The Glade of Dreams
The Glade of Dreams is the world in which the Rayman games are set. The original Rayman game was set in a valley inhabited by limbless creatures like Rayman, and seemed to be in a coastal or island area. The sequel, Rayman 2: The Great Escape , offers little information about the geography of the Glade, but its remake, Rayman Revolution , shows that all locations seen in Rayman 2 are part of a large landmass called The Front. In Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc , Rayman travels around the world via Teensie Highways, so little new information is revealed about his world in this game either. According to a number of official sources, Rayman was first found either washed up on the shores of the Glade of Dreams, or sleeping peacefully under a palm tree and found by fishermen. Either way, the people of this land were soon convinced of his good intentions (especially after he first saved the world from Mr Dark), and supposedly he had befriended the likes of Globox and Ly before Rayman 2 took place.
Now it was time for Rayman to show his heroism. Admiral Razorbeard and his Robo-Pirate army soon attacked and in the Great Forest, Rayman and Globox fought off a bunch of them. Suddenly, Rayman's powers disappeared and Ly telepathically communicated with him to tell him that the Heart of the World had been smashed into 1000 pieces called Lums, meaning Rayman and Ly's powers had disappeared. Then Rayman was captured and he told a frightened Globox to go to Ly for help. Rayman was put in a jail cell and Globox himself soon arrived, giving him a Silver Lum from Ly. The Silver Lum gave him back the power to shoot his magic fist and he used to escape. Globox accidentally knocked Rayman off the ship and they both go plunging towards the ground.
On his journey to find Ly, Rayman meets Murfy, the Grand Minimus Teensies, the Baby Globoxes, and more. He soon finds Ly, who gives him the grapple power back and tells him he needs to find the four masks of Polokus to reawaken Polokus himself. On his journey to collect them, Rayman carried out many tasks such as finding the Elixir of Life to cure Clark, rescuing many friends from captivity and even defeating the guardians of the masks. Eventually, he collected all four and was taken to the Prison Ship to defeat Razorbeard. After beating him, Razorbeard destroyed the Prison Ship and Rayman was believed to have died in the explosion, with the only thing left of him being his left foot. At his funeral, Rayman arrived almost safe and sound and was reunited with his foot, and after a long and difficult journey, he was told to rest.
A fugitive in Aeropolis
Main Article: Rayman: The Animated Series
Rigatoni, the villainous boss of an intergalatic circus, captures Rayman and takes him to his circus. Rayman, however, does not take this and jokes around with Razorbeard, who is now portrayed as Rigatoni's servant. Rayman finds out how badly the other circus freaks are being treated and helps them escape. Angered, Rigatoni phones Inspector Grub and tells him to find Rayman and his new friends and bring them back. Meanwhile, outside the vast city of Aeropolis, Rayman and the gang see an old man struggling to fix a car. The man promises he'll let them have the car if they can fix it and Cookie (one of the other fugitives) successfully manages to do so. After evading Inspector Grub, they seek refuge in what is actually the detective's house.
Let the competition begin!
Main Article: Rayman M
Rayman and his friends and foes returned for a competition to see who actually was the best. The competition contained two parts: Racing and Battle. Rayman was one of the main competitors in these competitions. Even Razorbeard is back because he gave his resignation to Rigatoni and gathered his army of Robo-Pirates.
Main Article: Rayman 3 (GBA)
When Razorbeard strikes back at the Glades of Dreams, it is up to Rayman to save his friends yet again. Rayman and Globox talk about how Globox was saving the Teensies when he accidentally swallowed a Black Lum. Suddenly, Globox vanishes and Rayman goes looking for him. Facing similar events to Rayman 2, Rayman soon battles Razorbeard's machine, the Grolgoth, once more and defeats Razorbeard.
Later, Globox tells his children that he saved the world, with a little help from Rayman.
A Wacky Adventure
Main Article: Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc
Rayman and his best friend Globox are napping in the Crossroads of Dreams. Rayman's hands suddenly come to life and walk off. They see a Red Lum and scare it by making shadow puppets. The Red Lum is scared so much that it turns into the Dark Lum Lord Andre, who goes and creates his Hoodlum army, attempting to destroy the Heart of the World.
Eager in his intents, he storms through the door, unaware that Rayman and Globox had already arrived there. Globox, standing in front of the door, screams and swallows Andre, where Andre soon decides to reside. From there, Rayman and Globox visit three different doctors. The third decides to meet with the first two, where they could cooperatively attempt to extract Andre, and succeed. Andre then visits the fallen Knaaren warrior Reflux, where he encourages him to follow through with his new plot. Reflux, ashamed of his defeat, takes well to the offer and, once more, pursues his goals of power and might.
After Rayman and Globox follow the recently-formed duo throughout several different locations, they finally arrive at the Tower of the Leptys, where Reflux was waiting, now with the power of Leptys, to once again face his enemy. Following his final defeat (where he then crystallizes and shatters), Andre is converted to a Red Lum again, triggering all other Black Lums to do the same.
Revenge of André
Even though André had been expelled from Globox's body, his spirit still remained within him. The spirit of André summoned back the Hoodlums to get their revenge on the world for being defeated. One of their plans was to create a clone of Reflux to kill Rayman.
Rayman and Globox were napping in the Clearleaf Forest, when Globox heard a strange sound and went to follow it, only to be captured by the Hoodlums. Rayman awoke later that afternoon to find Globox missing, and went searching for him with the help of Murfy, fighting the Hoodlums along the way and destroying Reflux's plum juice factory. Rayman later reunited with Globox as he fought the wily witch Begoniax.
As the duo went further, Rayman started noticing Globox's strange split personality, the other side of him being very cruel and rude. When he defeated the Fire Monster, André's spirit announced his full possession over Globox, all to0 Rayman's shock and surprise.
Eventually, Rayman defeated the Reflux Clone, expelling André's evil spirit from an unconscious Globox. Globox then awoke, back to his normal self, and the two walked off together in the forest, Rayman stating they made a great team.
The Bunny Invasion
One day, Rayman decided to take a few baby Globoxes out for a picnic, which was disrupted by the sudden invasion of a species new to him - the Rabbids. He and the babies were captured and taken to a Colosseum, where he became the Rabbids' source of entertainment. He would have to pass their many challenges for 15 days before he escaped using the plungers he had earned after each day of success. He soon realised that he had left the babies behind, and tried to return for them through a hole a rabbid had made, but he got stuck for some time.
Soon after this event, Rayman learns that the Rabbids are planning to take over Earth, and attempts to infiltrate them by dressing up as one and imitating their behaviour, while following them all over the world and collecting as much information as possible to use as a warning to the Earth's inhabitants.
Currently he is still being harassed by the Rabbids, as he had to see refuge in what may be his second home after being chased by a small group of them. However, they mysteriously travel into the television set inside and harass him and even creatures living outside the home even more for an entire week.
- When Rayman 2 was released in Japan and China, Rayman's purple clothes and the stripes on Ly's suit had to be changed to blue, because in those countries purple is the "colour of the dead".
- One of Rayman's hobbies is painting, which was revealed at a later point in Rayman 1 and in Rayman Junior.
- Rayman also seems to like basketball. In Rayman 2, he would sometimes take his body off and play with it like a basketball whenever he is left idle. Also, in the GBA version of Rayman 3 if the player decided to continue at the "Game Over" screen, Rayman would throw his body through a basketball net and catch it.
- Some of Rayman's gymnastic skills include handstands, somersaults and back flips.
- Rayman appears in the credits of Tonic Trouble.