Leaked Rayman Legends trailer shows Wii U’s NFC capabilities (gallery, video)

I can’t imagine many truly vital uses for the Wii U controller’s ability to transfer data via near-field communication (NFC), but Ubisoft has already thought of some silly, fun ones. A leaked E3 trailer for Rayman Legends, a new sidescrolling action game starring Ubisoft’s famous no-limbed mascot, hints at the Wii U’s power and some of its new abilities. 

By placing a plush toy of a crazy looking heart or rabbid (or even Desmond Miles from Assassin’s Creed) on your Wii U controller screen, you can make it rain hearts or perform other good or bad actions in the game. We can imagine trading card games taking advantage of this functionality in a similar way.

The leaked E3 trailer comes from GameKult, a french game site, and may get taken down soon. We’ve saved a few screenshots of the game and have embedded the trailer. 

Rayman Legends seems to follow in line with the recent Rayman Origins. It’s a lot closer to the classic Rayman PlayStation game than any of the hero’s 3D outings since. The hand-drawn art style of Origins is present, but much more refined, looking more like a 2D cartoon than ever before. The trailer features incredibly large numbers of enemies and maps with a huge range of locations. It’s beautiful, and shows off a taste of the power of the Wii U, which may not match the upcoming consoles from Microsoft and Sony, but Wii owners should certainly be happy.  

Multiplayer gameplay is present and appears to allow local players and online players (or maybe opponents). There are also multiplayer minigames — a four-player soccer match was shown — and social online games. It even appears that players can race each other through levels online. In the middle of the trailer, we see half a dozen Rayman characters playing through the same level — some of them ghosted out much like a time-trial ghost in Mario Kart. 

Some touchscreen abilities are also present. It appears that the player with the Wii U touchscreen controller can control objects in the gaming world with the touchscreen, doing things like raising or lowering platforms to allow other players to pass through a region. We imagine that, in this god mode of sorts, the player with the Wii U controller would be able to use the NFC to hurt or help the players in the game. Most of Nintendo’s early Wii U demos at E3 last year featured similar “god mode” type play where the player with the Wii U controller has a completely different role than other players, often with a lot more power and vision than the other players. Will this become a trend on the new console? 

What do you think of the new Rayman? We’re already excited.