Created by Nekrotix

I was always a fan of Rayman. Though I was never really good at those games as a kid, I’ve recently grown a fascination with them. The game had a certain charm to it, that just couldn’t be replicated in any other way. I played all the games, from the Original to Rayman Origins, except for one, that I could never get my hands on no matter how hard I tried.

This game was known as Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc. I heard from my friends who played that it was a blast, but I didn’t want to hear a word about the game or even the story. I wanted to experience the entire game myself when I played it, and not have a single bit of the game spoiled.

I just moved out of my parent’s house a few weeks ago. I just graduated high school, and was moving out for the summer so I could show my parents I’m a responsible adult. As a gift, my parents gave me an old Gamecube as well as a few games to go along with it. It wasn’t the greatest gift, but we didn’t have the money to go out and buy one of those new-gen consoles.

I picked up the old Gamecube from the box, and hooked it up to my television. It actually looked a bit fitting, since the TV was just about as old as the Gamecube. I picked up a few games, some of them bringing back old memories. Paper Mario, Luigi’s Mansion, Pokemon Colosseum, the classics. But then, out of the corner of my eye, I spotted a package within the box. It was written in black marker: “To our independent son, From his loving parents.” I ripped it open, wondering what it could be, and just my luck, it was Rayman 3.

I tried to hold in my excitement. I didn’t want to disturb the other people in the apartment. I hastily placed the disk in the Gamecube and began to play.

The game started off with some very high-paced music, but as I later learned the visuals were very different. Instead of flying across a forest area, it was inside a Mansion. Since I never played the game before, I assumed this was normal. I pressed start and made a new game.

I played the game for a few minutes where I finally reached the inside of the Fairy Council. However, I didn’t get a cutscene with the King telling me I needed to head to the Land of the Livid Dead, instead I was just sent right there. I hopped into the portal, and it sent me straight to the Swamp Area. It felt a bit odd, even while playing it. The NPCs were celebrating, and I had no idea why. I just jumped into the portal and left them to their business.

I walked into Begoniax’s fight room, and she just sort of… ran around in circles. I had the cross-hairs that told me I needed to hit her, so I did. Each time she released a howl of pain. When her health reached 0, she fell down, and began to sob uncontrollably. I felt so horrible, and had no idea what just happened. I continued through the mirror, and continued through the level.

When I reached an area with a moat and a large wooden door in the distance, I didn’t notice any Hoodlums wandering the area, ready to fight. I simply walked forward, the door opened automatically and I went inside. The screen cut to black for just a second, and when I was allowed to see once more, I noticed I was in a familiar area.

I was within the halls of the mansion I saw in the beginning of the game. But why was I here? What was its purpose?

“Unlucky and Unwise is he who risks entering my domain!” A voice echoed from the game. It was much louder than any voice prior to this point. “Let’s give him a warm welcome!” Music began to play, it was fast-paced and rushed, and then, in large red text, a single word appeared, “RUN.” I saw a health bar at the bottom of the screen, which indicated I was fighting a boss, so I ran off to the right.

I ran and ran, hearing the voice echo through the halls. I had no idea what I was up against, but I didn’t dare to find out. So I continued to run through the many rooms, searching for something, anything, that I could use in this fight.

“Muhaha!” A cackle was heard from behind Rayman, and the camera spun to reveal Razoff, but he looked… odd. His gun was bloodied, and a skull was impaled on the spike on his hat, and he looked very angry and agitated. He took aim with his gun, and I quickly dashed behind the nearest cover. The cover exploded, and I rushed behind another statue. I noticed both doors were locked, so there’s no way out.

After a while of hiding behind reappearing covers, I decide it was time to take action. I rushed up to Razoff, while charging up a punch, and socked it in his torso. It actually took off quite a bit off his health, and the force knocked him back through the door. The other door opened, and I continued to run. I kept running for another couple minutes until Razoff cornered me again, and the dance repeated.

When I eventually defeated Razoff, he disappeared and I heard his voice echo, “Haha, no one can stop me!”

As I walked around, searching for an exit, I took a look at a few of the pictures. Some were just regular standalone pictures of him, but I start to see some strange photos. I saw a few pictures of him and his kids, playing around. “This guy has kids?” I thought to myself. To me, he didn’t seem like the kid-friendly type. What with his apparel? But that’s when I noticed something that set me off. It was a picture of his wife, but it wasn’t on a photo. It was on the ground, and as it turned out...

Begoniax was his wife. I started to worry. I had flashbacks to when I fought her earlier in the level, and I began to think… No, there was no way I actually…

But it was all made clear to me when I reached the next stage of Razoff’s fight. He stood there, on a giant wrecking ball of bloody spikes, with two corpses already beginning to see signs of decay, but it was clearly his two kids. One was missing a skull, that’s most likely being used for his hat. “You will not get far…” He said, his eyes glaring right at me.

The wrecking ball swings backwards, and then forwards, and then reaches its pinnacle point, where it will release at top speed. I could run now, but the controller was unresponsive. Right before I was smashed, Rayman opened his arms, as if he was ready to embrace the ball. The balls swung forward, the rusty chain screeching against hard metal and it swung at Rayman, and…

After the incident, I couldn’t play Rayman for a couple of days. Any Rayman. I was filled with guilt, depression, and a bit of fear. I couldn’t imagine why the game would make me do that, kill an innocent woman, and then have their psycho husband kill me. But, when I did decide to replay it, everything was normal again. I fought Begoniax, and she ran off. She was sad, but not like how I saw her the first time. But when I got to Razoff, I realized what was supposed to happen was that I was meant to chase him. But after what I went through… part of me didn’t want to. Part of me just wanted to stop there and leave it. But I pushed forward, and convinced myself it was just part of my imagination.

However, when I got to the wrecking ball, I couldn’t help but notice… a skull impaled on one of the spikes. With a big nose, and yellow hair, splitting off in two directions in the front.