Ubisoft's limbless mascot prepares for a new 3D adventure in Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc. The whimsically animated hero finds himself battling the once-peaceful Lums, who have been tainted by a Dark Lum's black magic and are now under his complete power. Firmly planted on the wrong side of the tracks, this Hoodlum army has outfitted itself with pelts from the animal populace and, if left unchecked, will spread the Dark Lum's wicked ways throughout the land.

Rayman and loyal friend Globox team-up to fight this powerful army, but they are far from helpless. As in previous titles in the best-selling series, Rayman has a few moves up his transparent sleeves to beat the odds. Movement throughout the colorful environments is accomplished using two key systems: "Belching Action Rapid Flight," which takes advantage of Globox's newfound ability to spew bubbles Rayman can hop on, and "Flatulence Action Rapid Transport," which uses Globox's "other" form of gas to ride to new areas. Both powers manifest themselves whenever the sidekick consumes cans of prune juice, which are dispersed at various points throughout the levels.

Additional power-ups are acquired by consuming other cans of juice. Blue cans imbue Rayman with the power to fire off chains à la Spider-Man, allowing him to swing across hooks positioned along the ceiling, while green cans have Rayman shooting tornadoes to spin circular platforms down to ground level or to defeat certain types of enemies. Other devices include spiked gauntlets, for a more direct approach to dispatching enemies or smashing through barriers, and player-guided missiles that can toggle switches or eliminate enemies from afar. Once a missile is fired, the camera switches to a first-person perspective as players steer the projectile toward its desired target.

In addition to traditional 3D platform elements, Rayman 3's levels are filled with other play styles to add some variety to the action. Players will zip around lakes from inside watercraft, engage enemies in rail-shooting sequences, and involve themselves in many other surprises. Rayman creator Michael Ancel provided input during the development process, hoping to continue the success of the award-winning series as it marks its seventh year in the industry. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide