I just finished thoroughly playing the demo. I had to restart some levels a lot, but a lot was due to me not really paying attention to certain things, haha. For instance, I tried half a dozen times to get the minimum time trial time in the first level and was about to complain that it was BS they don't even show you a timer or anything, and then finally saw the clock you have to grab at the beginning of the level to start the time trial.
Similarly, I just couldn't get all the lums to get the medal for the level, but after a while I realized I was skipping lums-giving enemies by not going to the secret areas anymore.
Still, a lot of the challenge in the demo was legitimate and not due to my stupidity. And some of the difficulty was NOT legitimate and due to some problems with the game. I thought the controls and platforming were pretty spot on and forgiving, until I reached the final stage of the demo, where I must have died a dozen times due to Rayman just getting "stuck" in the scenery, somehow. Not too big a fan of that.
Some neat surprises, however: the shooter level was pretty solid, and clearly inspired by this PSOne import:
Yup, that's a kid riding a flying vacuum.
By the way, I encourage you to revisit that stage as Globox instead of Rayman. It plays the same but the new... look... really took me by surprise, haha.
And that's definitely one thing I love about the demo: lots of great visual gags and funny animations.
The platforming is really solid when Rayman isn't stuck to the scenery, too. At E3, I played this pretty amazing level that could have been a temple level taken straight out of DKCR. The controls can feel a bit floaty, but they're pretty forgiving, especially given that you have wall jumps, and can slow down your fall.
I do wonder how surprised at the difficulty those who haven't played a hardcore platformer but want this game because it's pretty will be, however. Haha. Even I was taken a bit by surprise.
You had me at "hardcore platformer"... actually you had me long before that
Absolutely looking forward to this game now! The early high praise is preparing me for a classy romp of platforming goodness. But I'm afraid this will have to wait until around Christmas, as my old squeeze Nintendo is trying desperately to win my heart back again this winter, and I'm a sucker for Mario and Zelda...
Edit - Other than having to deal with the PS3's somewhat uncomfortable d-pad, this is a really fun game! I'm glad I put it on my Christmas list. The challenge was MUCH higher than I was expecting, which is a very good thing!
I played the demo last night, but after the second level the sound was completely gone. When I exited the demo my PS3 did the "Beep Beep Beep" thing and then restarted. Must've been a bug or something, but I'll give it another go tonight.
By the way, how many levels are there in the demo?
Honestly, that game didn't seem like an unfair challenge to me. It was a good time, so I'm looking forward to this. I'm curious about how it transitioned from an artist-made downloadable project to a full retail release, though.
I'm assuming the screens in Nintendo Power represent the Wii version, in which case, it looks pretty much identical to the others, but in SD. It ultimately won't be as stunning on an HDTV, but if the screens in the magazine are anything to go by, it's still sure to be one of the best-looking titles on the system, easily.
Then again, Ubi Soft was also suspiciously quiet about the last Rayman game that hit a Nintendo system, and we all remember how that turned out...