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Raving Rabbids is a video game series published by Ubisoft Entertainment. It was originally a spinoff minigame-centric series based on Rayman, but its popularity quickly escalated it to surpass that of Rayman himself. It later became its own standalone franchise starting with Rabbids Go Home.
The first game in the series is entitled Rayman Raving Rabbids. In this first installment, the limbless hero Rayman was captured by the Rabbids and forced to participate in various absurd mini-games in a gladiator-style arena to entertain the moronic bunny masses. As you progress through the game, Rayman uses the plungers he receives as rewards for completing minigames (It Makes Sense in Context. Wait, on second thought… no, it doesn't make sense at all!) to build a makeshift ladder and escape through a high window. Even though he escapes, the game still has a rather silly Downer Ending, as Rayman realizes afterwords that he forgot to rescue the other creatures imprisoned by the Rabbids. And then he got stuck in a hole.
The second game, Rayman Raving Rabbids 2, is set with the Rabbids launching a full-scale invasion on Earth. Rayman infiltrates the operation by dressing up as a Rabbid and following them to Earth in order to stop their plans of taking over the foreign planet. The game is more based around party-style multiplayer gameplay, and beyond the opening introduction the plot disappears, even going so far to not include an ending sequence or automatic "end-of-game" credits roll.
Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party is the third game in the series. In this game, Rayman is for the first time only present in the cutscenes and is not a playable character, further pushing the Rabbids series away from its roots. The game begins with Rayman running away from a mob of Rabbids and hiding in a nearby house. Lightning strikes the Rabbids outside, mysteriously trapping them inside of the TV of the house Rayman takes refuge in. The TV remains constantly powered up and works even if it is unplugged, and the cutscenes of the game consist of Rayman attempting to destroy or get rid of the TV. The gameplay itself is set inside the television as the Rabbids participate in various minigames themed after the different TV channels and programs. The further the game progresses, the more frustrated Rayman becomes by the constant noise and distraction of the TV and attempts to get rid of it in several different ways, causing gradual damage to the television and the screen to crack further and further. By the end, Rayman becomes angry enough to take off his shoe(and his foot, incidentally) and throw it at the TV, which finally breaks, releasing the Rabbids inside and causing the chase from the beginning of the game to start all over again.
The fourth installment of the series is entitled Rabbids Go Home and deviates greatly from the previous titles by being an item-collecting platformer instead of a minigame collection, and it is the first time the player teams up with the Rabbids. In this game, the Rabbids are living in a junkyard and become nostalgic for home. Since they're stupid and forgetful, they don't know where their home is -- but then decide that (1) their home is the Moon, and (2) they need to build a pile of junk so they can climb to it. To get stuff for their pile, they raid a nearby human city, stealing everything they can and putting it into a shopping cart. The humans, who naturally don't take very kindly to this, form an organization known as the 'Verminators' to exterminate the Rabbids and get back all the stuff they've stolen. The successful ending of the game shows the Rabbids making their pile big enough to indeed seemingly reach the moon, but right as they're discovering that it isn't really in the sky, the Verminators bomb their huge pile. The pile of stuff goes flying into space, Rabbids included, and the Rabbids reach their 'home' in orbit around the moon. Needless to say, Rayman doesn't appear in this story at all.
The latest game in the series is Raving Rabbids Travel In Time, and is a return to the mini-game collection of the earlier titles. This game does not include Rayman, and since another game entitled Rayman Origins has been announced, it is confirmed that Rabbids and Rayman are now two separate series.
The Rabbids Mini-Game series show examples of:
- And Your Reward Is Clothes - ...and music and plungers. But seriously, Rabbids Cosplay a lot.
- Burping Contest - One of the minigames in Rayman Raving Rabbids 2.
- Butt Monkey - Rayman in TV Party.
- Casual Video Game
- Catch Phrase - "DAAAAAAAAHHHHH!". Actually more of a Catch Yell.
- Cell Phone - One of the minigames involves the Rabbids chatting away on mobile phones in a theater, and stopping before the usher catches them and punishes them for it.
- Chaotic Stupid - The rabbids act more 'evil' in the first game,but otherwise fit this to a T.
- Clark Kenting
- Compilation Rerelease - One is available of the first three games.
- Cool but Stupid: One of the shows in TV Party is called Incredible But Stupid!
- Cute but Cacophonic
- The Ditz - The Rabbids are adorably moronic.
- Everythings Better With Bunnies
- Excuse Plot
- Expy: The Minions from Despicable Me are possibly inspired by the Rabbids.
- Fire-Breathing Diner
- Garfunkel - Rayman
- Getting Crap Past the Radar - In the very first game, there is a bumper sticker on the locker in your prison cell with a very obvious "69" on it.
- Gilded Cage - In the first game.
- Gladiator Games - The first Rabbids game is a spoof on this.
- Go-Karting with Bowser - In the first game, Rayman plays various minigames with his supposed enemies, the Rabbids, including leisurely ones like volleyball.
- Hair-Raising Hare - the Raving Rabbids themselves (though probably they weren't intended to be scary.)
- Hub Level: Travel In Time has a museum as its hub.
- In Name Only - Despite being the titular character, Rayman has had a minor role from Raving Rabbids 2 onward, which has since deteriorated to the point that he's no longer a part of the series at all. Perhaps the best example of this is Rayman Raving Rabbids: TV Party, where Rayman isn't even in any of the actual gameplay—he's only seen in the cutscenes.
- Killer Rabbit
- Lawyer-Friendly Cameo - A plethora of them in TV Party: B.R.U.S.H, Star Worse, Dawn of the Rabbids, need I go on?
- Mascot Mook
- Minigame Game
- Missing Secret - The first game's Downer Ending put off many people, but there's a rumor that there's a hidden, happier ending by getting 100% Completion on every minigame. Sadly, there's a glitch in one of the dance mini-games which prevents said completion, but it's been proven that this 'secret ending' is nonexistent after all.
- Paper-Thin Disguise - Rayman in Rayman Raving Rabbids 2, by putting socks over his hair and inhaling helium to look and sound like a Rabbid.
- Party Game
- Police Lineup - One of the minigames in Rayman Raving Rabbids 2.
- Product Placement - Capri Sun juice shows up in TV Party and Rabbids Go Home.
- Rage Against the Author - This video features the Rabbids viciously beating down Michel Ancel as he tries to explain the early development of the game as a Rayman platformer.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning - The Rabbids act somewhat normal, until they scream and their eyes turn red.
- Rhythm Game
- Shmuck Bait: The latest game gives instructions ONLY in this form. It warns you not to do things, then presents you with how to do them via an illustration.
- Trapped in TV Land: In "TV Party".
- What Could Have Been - The first Raving Rabbids game was going to be very different...