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Rabbids Land review

They say "BWAAAAAAAAH", we say "mehhhh"

The Wii arrived six years ago. One of the launch titles, Rayman Raving Rabbids, was a collection of mini-games starring the eponymous limbless wonder and some brand new characters, the titular bunch of screaming bunnies. Fast-forward to the Wii U launch and the rodents have built the kind of cred to nab the starring role, but despite more than half a decade of progress, their Wii U appearance is far worse than their debut.

Rabbids Land is a multiplayer board game for up to four players/victims, in which you race your opponents to a certain number of trophies (either 10 or 20, depending on the particular settings you've chosen) before heading to the centre space on the board. The first person to set a paw in the middle wins the game.

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There's not a single idea here that hasn't been done to death by Mario Party. There are squares that help your progress with presents, such as a chance to roll again or a pair of crutches that will cripple another Rabbid for a turn (completely missing the point of crutches). Others throw you into a mini-game, giving you an opportunity to win three trophies. Sometimes you'll land on a quiz square, where answering a trivia question correctly gets you two trophies.

We would love to be able to say there was more to it than that, but there really isn't. We shook the game box to see if we were missing some of the playing pieces or a second rulesheet, all to no avail.There's only one board, you choose either a 10 or 20-trophy limit and you move round playing a series of two-player mini-games until there's a winner. Job done. That isn't good enough for a full-price Wii U game.

Mini Disappointments

Of course, the board game segments of party games are always notoriously rubbish - if even Mario can't nail it, the Rabbids certainly won't - so it's all eyes on the mini-games. It's bad news on this front, too. Whether you're blowing penguins into an opponent's ship, trying to catch bank robber Rabbids in security cameras or fastening the idiot creatures so they don't fly out of a theme park ride, everything feels dull.

This is an achievement in itself: it takes a truly moronic designer to take a game in which you surf through space dodging fireballs from an opponent who's triggering them to the beat of a Britney Spears song and make it feel ordinary. What's more, there are only around 20 of these mini-games available (compared to the 80 on offer in Mario Party 9), so it won't take long for you to see everything on offer.

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More inexplicably, despite being a game for four people, every single mini-game is limited to two-players. Having a four-player party game where half the participants have to sit out during the 'fun' bit makes about as much sense as buying a car and then only ever using it to listen to the radio as it sits, undriven, on your driveway.

The only vague promise of innovation comes in the form of the Treasure Hunt mode, in which solo players take part in the mini-games as usual, but also have to collect coins that pop up during the course of each game. These coins unlock bonus videos, which is essentially a catalogue of Ubisoft's promotional Rabbid videos. Ubisoft, you spoil us with this unlockable marketing.

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Comments

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  1. shadow.x Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 15:44

    If only this article was written a week ago, I would have saved myself a bit of money. This game is utter rubbish! Very disappointed considering this is my first Raving Rabbids buy :/

  2. tomonm Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 16:06

    Well, it was written a week ago. It was in issue 91 of ONM which went on sale on 16 January. We've just posted it online. You should buy the magazine to see the reviews first!

  3. Argenthor Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 17:33

    Snap.

    On the game itself, looking at recent reviews and the top eshop games... a lot of the current wii u games are actually sub-80% atm (with loads under 50%). I haven't noticed because I'm still busy with the likes of Super Mario and Assassin's Creed... but I can see why some people are starting to talk about a lack of games. Luckily post-march will be good!

  4. rayquaza9999 Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 18:16

    Snap.

    On the game itself, looking at recent reviews and the top eshop games... a lot of the current wii u games are actually sub-80% atm (with loads under 50%). I haven't noticed because I'm still busy with the likes of Super Mario and Assassin's Creed... but I can see why some people are starting to talk about a lack of games. Luckily post-march will be good!

    Over the years game review scores have massively inflated to the point that nothing under 80 is worth buying but it seems that ONM are trying to reverse this; 79% is not a bad score, and if you look at the quality of launch games for each console you see that very few are very good so this is normal. I am sure that wave 2 of Wii U games will be better.

  5. tomonm Tuesday 5th Feb 2013 at 19:03

    It's weird. If you look at our review scores for Wii U games, there are very few average games. Sonic Racing is in that bracket as we gave it 62, although I know some people liked it. Then there are some good games in the 70s - Ninja Gaiden, Sing Party and Tank Tank Tank - but it seems most are really good or quite bad.

    There are loads of games that got over 80 but quite a few that received sub 50 scores. If you haven't played the likes of Black Ops, Assassin's Creed and Batman on other platforms there are plenty of great games to play on Wii U and there will be lots more once we reach the spring and summer.

    It was a shame that Scribblenauts has been delayed as I was looking forward to that it it would have filled the gap until LEGO City Undercover.

  6. KH81314 Wednesday 6th Feb 2013 at 06:15

    Ubisoft should make another Rabbids game like Rabbids Go Home. I enjoyed that game since it wasn't mini games.

  7. imbusydoctorwho Wednesday 6th Feb 2013 at 13:14

    Ubisoft should make another Rabbids game like Rabbids Go Home. I enjoyed that game since it wasn't mini games.


    Amen to that.

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