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Alignment Neutral

Appears in R2, RR, R3 (GBA)
Location {{{location}}}
Portrayed by {{{portrayed by}}}

Sex Male
Species Unknown
Status Guardian

Relatives {{{relatives}}}

Unlock criteria {{{Unlock criteria}}}

Jano (commonly known as the Guardian of the Cave of Bad Dreams) is a character from Rayman 2: The Great Escape (and its remakes) in which he guards the Cave of Bad Dreams, as well as the Game Boy Advance version of Rayman 3 where he is involved with the Pirates. In the former game, he is the Guardian of the Cave of Bad Dreams, a subterranean grotto in which the nightmares of Polokus are found and which it is his job to ensure are kept locked away. Jano also guards precious treasure, which, until found by Rayman, was only rumoured to exist.

Rayman Origins reveals that Polokus and Jano are two sides of the same character, and that Polokus first became Jano during the First Bad Dream. It also reveals that Jano is the progenitor of the Antitoons.


Jano is a larger version of the one-eyed, fire-breathing monsters that dwell in the Cave of Bad Dreams and the Sanctuary of Stone and Fire, who additionally carries a staff with a skull on its top, and wears a magician's hat identical to that worn by Polokus. The skull atop his staff contains the Elixir of Life, which Rayman must gain to save his friend Clark, who became ill after munching on a rusty Robo-Pirate in the Menhir Hills.

Jano as he is illustrated in the manual for the Japanese version of Rayman 2


Jano's colours are different in the Japanese version of Rayman Revolution

Jano is a fierce but wise creature, with the ability to read an individual's mind, breathe fire, conjure floating skulls, and change his size (becoming huge during his battle with Rayman). As a guardian, he will ward off anyone that doesn't know the name of the Cave of Bad Dreams. Although he's an ally of Rayman in general, he challenges Rayman to find the treasure that is hidden deep in the cave in Rayman 2, chases and battles him towards the level's end, and offers the treasure to him upon his defeat (even though Jano attempts to kill Rayman a number of times throughout the level).

A glitch causes a miniature Jano to appear in the Marshes of Awakening

He can tell whether or not an individual is greedy, so he rewards Rayman with the Elixir of Life for refusing to take the tempting treasure. In all versions of Rayman 2 (excluding the Playstation version), the player gets to choose whether (s)he wants the treasure or not, and in choosing it, Rayman is cast to a deserted island surrounded by the gold, noticeably obese, resulting in 'the end of the game'.

Jano appears again in the Game Boy Advance version of Rayman 3, where he is the boss of the Haunted Dreams world.


  • Jano's name is possibly derived from that of Janus, the two-faced Roman god of gates. This may be an allusion to Jano's two-faced nature: sometimes he helps Rayman; other times he tries to kill him.
  • A glitch involves Jano, which has been known to occur in the PC, N64 and Dreamcast versions of Rayman 2. If the player returns to the Marshes of Awakening after beating the Cave of Bad Dreams, then they can see a shrunken Jano over water, just on the left side of the log leading to the cave, where Rayman appears after choosing this level.
  • Jano's name was not confirmed until the GBA version of Rayman 3. In Rayman 2 he is simply referred to as "The guardian of the Cave of Bad Dreams". Interestingly, the minor character of Eig is named in Rayman 2, but it is never made clear immediately who the name belongs to. Therefore, many mistakenly assumed Jano to be Eig. (Eig is in fact a large but unimportant fish found in The Marshes of Awakening on most versions of the game.
  • Like almost every other boss, Jano is absent from the GBC version of Rayman 2, along with the entire subplot involving the elixer. The Cave of Bad Dreams here appears to be simply another world Rayman must pass through.
  • Jano's role is smaller in the PlayStation version of Rayman 2. In this version, the Cave of Bad Dreams is accessed directly through a Spiral Door in the Hall of Doors, and the meeting in the Marshes of Awakening does not occur. Jano does not actually appear in the game until the beginning of Rayman's battle against him.