Rabbids Go Home Review

Modern video games often feature epic narratives and cinema-worthy production values, seeking to immerse players in magnificent fictional worlds that will help brand those titles games the next big things in gaming. Ubisoft’s Rabbids Go Home just wants everyone to have fun, and by keeping players engaged and smiling, it more often than not succeeds at making that happen.

Rabbids Go Home is a departure from earlier games starring the crazy critters, and it abandons the minigame-filled party structure in favor of a more cohesive “comedy adventure” design. It’s arguable whether or not the game is any more complex than its predecessors, as it can most aptly be described as a collect-a-thon with a singular goal and repetitive gameplay, but it manages to maintain a Katamari-esque sort of appeal, regardless of (or perhaps because of) its elementary design.

Rabbids Go Home

The game’s premise is this: The Rabbids’ usual gig of tormenting Earthlings is old news, so now they’re dead set on venturing to the moon. Their only idea for getting there, however, is to build a giant pile of miscellaneous objects high enough to reach it. So a few Rabbids set out with nothing but a shopping cart and an unwaveringly maniacal sense of enthusiasm to grab anything and everything they can find, and that’s where the player comes in. Players control the Rabbids as they collect thousands of toys, clothes, clocks, radios, animals, food items, and any other loose junk they can find throughout 30-plus levels in what plays like a blend of platformer and kart racer with a case of ADD.

As they wheel, slide, and scream through settings such as office buildings, airports, hospitals, and department stores picking up the objects that are strewn about everywhere (and conveniently circled on the screen for easy identification), their feverish grab-and-go tendencies are matched only by their gleeful affinity for terrorizing the conformist, cardboard personalities who spend their days wasting away at these institutions. Those feeble folks are horrified by the little monsters, and just one of the Rabbids’ “bwaaah!” screams scares them clear out of their clothes. The “bwaaah” attack, which is triggered by shaking either the Wii remote or the nunchuk, is the Rabbids’ primary form of defense against hostiles, and can also knock the “stuff” out of cabinets, dumpsters, vending machines, and other such containers. Skills learned later on include a brief turbo boost for jumping gaps or running people down, and the ability to occasionally pick up and toss bombs. The game’s controls are super sharp, and despite the wild carting action, players will feel like they are firmly in the driver’s seat the entire time.

Each level contains one large, 600-“stuff”-worth, “XL stuff” object that must be flushed down the toilet at the end (everyone knows that Rabbids transport their junk through the sewers) in order to open up the next area, but by grabbing more of the smaller “XS stuff,” the pile grows faster and more places open up for ransacking. Players also earn gifts for gathering specific amounts of “stuff” in each location. These are mostly tattoos, headgear, and face-manipulating tools that are used in the Rabbid customization portion of the game, which is accessible between levels. Once you’ve unlocked enough options there, creating zany, multicolored, deformed Rabbids can be a real hoot, even if it’s completely pointless to do so.

The biggest drawback I encountered while playing Rabbids Go Home is that many of its levels, though different from one another, take place in the same locations and end up feeling recycled. If the game offered a bit more variety, it’d do a better job of sustaining its massive initial appeal. On the other hand, the few race-based and tube-sliding levels thrown in to mix things up were refreshing, and it would have been nice to see this aspect of the game expanded upon, or other, differing gameplay segments included. Stages range from moderately free-roaming to completely linear, but the game works best during the latter, when the pace is quickened and progress is streamlined to match the Rabbids’ frantic and straightforward personalities; it’s the more open levels that have the greatest potential to weary players.

Rabbids Go Home

Aside from the action, much of the game’s fun comes from watching and listening to the humans populating the game world, especially the female voice that can be heard over the PA system throughout nearly every level. It’s through these characters that the game’s satirical humor shines brightest. Clever jokes and criticisms of society, commercialism, religion, etc. are found throughout (I got a kick out of the soda-filled dumpsters with radioactive spills surrounding them in the nuclear facility), making the game more interesting to those who pay attention.

Similarly, the soundtrack seems chosen to portray the very play-it-safe nature of the human citizens, with a selection of recognizable classics offset by the Rabbids’ wildly uproarious brass band, but even those licensed tunes are great. From the opening “Come Go With Me” by the Del Vikings (a 50s doo-wop band nobody from recent generations has ever heard of), to the elevator jam, “Rivers of Babylon,” with plenty of John Denver in between, every song that drifts along the airwaves seems perfectly selected for the game. Then the Rabbids come trumpeting and tuba-ing through on a high-speed spring mattress to kick things up a notch. Excellent.

Although Rabbids Go Home may be simple and repetitious, the game’s efficient and responsive play control, comedic subject matter, and eternally likable protagonists will keep players coming back for more. Some added variety in the level locales, a greater focus on faster-paced gameplay, and a more pronounced difficulty curve would improve the experience, but overall, players will be sure to have fun and stay smiling with the Rabbids’ first “comedy adventure.”


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Author: Eddie Inzauto View all posts by
Eddie has been writing about games on the interwebz for over ten years. You can find him Editor-in-Chiefing around these parts, or talking nonsense on Twitter @eddieinzauto.

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