2D RPGs and Rayman Origins

I love a good platformer as much as I love a good RPG. I recently played through Rayman Origins and I was hooked. It finds a good balance between the precision platforming of the older Mario games and the speed and adrenaline of the classic Sonic titles. The other thing that really grabbed my attention was the fantastic art direction, including extremely detailed hand-drawn 2D character sprites and backgrounds. The game in motion looks unbelievable.

Soon my mind wondered to the times when epic RPGs of the past such as Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy VI and Secret of Mana where all 2D based. You don’t see many games made these days like that on consoles, but after seeing the success of Rayman Origins, wouldn’t it be great to see an original RPG with the same amount of detail and beauty in 2D. It could show off massive environments such as lush jungles, eerie caves, towering mountains or futuristic cities all in glorious high definition 2D art. Character models could be charming, without the need to make them too realistic.

Not only that, but instead of remaking older RPGs with 3D character models, imagine a beautiful remake of Final Fantasy VI featuring the same level of detail as found in Rayman Origins. It could keep the same feel and atmosphere as the Super Nintendo classic while showing off Terra and Kefka in a new light. I could only dream…



Filed under Chrono Series, Editorial, Final Fantasy Series, Mana Series

5 responses to “2D RPGs and Rayman Origins

  1. Oh, yes, Rayman Origins was beautiful. That would be nice to see more video games with such lovely artwork. 3D isn’t always better, especially nowadays, when it’s no longer new and exciting anyway. The only game I can think of with a similar style is Muramasa: The Demon Blade, a side scrolling game I have on the Wii. Not a huge fan of the game itself, but the art style is very nice. Some of the backgrounds are simply breathtaking (and I’m not usually the type to use that word). That’s a big part of why I bought it. Once I saw the screenshots on the back cover, I knew I wanted to check it out.

  2. The developer of Muramasa also created Odin Sphere on the PS2 which had fantastic hand-draw art as well. I agree that 3D isn’t always better and games have a certain charm in 2D that can’t be replicated in 3D. Thanks!

  3. MiracleBlaze

    It would be amazing to see FF6 replicated in an art style alike to that of Rayman Origins! The thing I like most about the graphics in Origins’ are just how vibrant and colourful they are; it makes a welcome change from games such as TLS that have a far more restricted colour palette.

    I think that rather than focusing on the photo realistic graphics that developers seem ever more insistent on nowadays, it would be nice for developers to draw some inspiratation from games like Okami, Muramasa – and to some extent Xenoblade – and create unique art styles that can help give the in-game world a sense of place and belonging, rather than sticking with the norm.

  4. I completely agree with you about having more colourful and unique art styles. Xenoblade’s world felt more like a modern version of Chrono Trigger’s asthetics to me. The world was wonderful and enticing to explore and really made the experience so much better. Thanks for the great comment!

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