Crash Bandicoot is back and this time, he is restored in his prime in HD and redefined for the PS4. The news of Crash coming back for PS4 came from an E3 announcement in 2016.
Even though the game was set to be release in 2017 and after the release of Skylanders: Imaginators with Crash included, many die-hard Crash fans were hyped and thrilled to see this orange fellow to come back and be playable for PS4. Now with the game already released in one collection with three updated games inside (Crash 1, 2, and Warped ), we can relieve this former Naughty Dog game in with all new graphics and current console.
Story: To make a long story short for all three
Crash Bandicoot – Cheese and Crackers is Crash Banidcoot!
Just like the synopsis state, the game begins with the villain Dr. Neo Cortex using his advance technology to mutate animals to create an army capable of conquering the world. Unfortunately, after he tried to make Crash as a general with his Vortex machine, Crash became a failed subject and he and ends up escaping. However, Cortex decides to use Crash’s girlfriend, Tawna, as replacement for Crash. The next morning, Crash wakes up in a beach shore in the Wumpa Islands and he must stop Cortex and his animal army to save his girlfriend and the world.
Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back – The enemy of my enemy is my friend?
Following the events after Crash 1, a defeated Cortex finds a mysterious power crystal hidden in the mines. He decides to collect these crystals for world domination; however, he does not have any allies to help him gather them and decides to enlist his foe Crash to retrieve them. Crash is tricked and believed that Cortex has changed his way and Crash goes through many worlds to collect crystals. The game debuts Crash’s sister Coco and she tries to warn Crash of the upcoming doom and even Dr. N. Brio (Cortex’s former friend) tries to stop Crash from collecting the crystals and make him collect gems to seek vengeance on Cortex.
Crash Bandicoot: Warped – Back to the future and past!
After defeating Cortex, a mysterious new enemy awakens and decides to work with Cortex and enlist a new ally enemy called Dr. N. Tropy to collect the crystals. This new enemy is named Uka Uka, brother of Aku Aku, and he wants to rule the world. After finding out that Uka Uka is awake, Aku Aku calls for Crash and Coco for help and sends them to different time periods to collect the crystals and ensure Cortex and Uka Uka fail their world domination plot.
Gameplay: Platforming Gem for fans
The story of Crash is a unique with a straight forward story. In Crash 1, your main objective was to save your girlfriend from turning into a mindless slave for evil plans. I like how you start off in the first level on the beach and then work your way up to Cortex’s Tower; it gives it a feeling of reaching for the goal. In essence, it feels like Playstation’s version of Mario saving Peach from Bowser. Overall, Crash 1 is a typical “reach point A to B” game. The game include these special gems in which gives players an alternative ending to this game. There are actually two different gems to get the alternate ending; there is the clear gems in which you get them from destroying all boxes and the colored gems are found in select stages where players must not die. Crash 2 changes the story into a item collecting story instead that can be resembled to Sonic the Hedgehog. To progress through the story, Crash has to collect all power crystals. The gems return in this game but made a little bit easier to do and instead of an alternate ending, it gives players an extended ending that leads to Warped. Just like 2, Warped relies on collecting crystals for the story and the gems are back and with the addition of relics where players must do time trial to obtain these relics. Once again, collecting all crystals, gems and relics will give fans an extended ending.
Just like the classic, Crash can still jump on enemies, spin and other abilities in the later games like body slams, dash and double jumps. The controls in the game works very accurate and you can move Crash with either the analog and D-Pad control. Overall, if you remember playing Crash on PS1, you already know how to play the games on the PS4.
In a addition to this collection Activision and Vicarious Visions added some new features to extend the gameplay value. For the first time, players can play as Coco in all three Crash games. Originally, Coco was only playable in Crash Warped when she is either riding her pet tiger or riding a vehicle. This new game will enable players to play as Coco if you ever get tired of playing as a boy; her move style is exactly like Crash. Also added to the game collection is time trials. Remember I mentioned time trials and the relics? They come back but in Crash 1 and 2. Players can challenge themselves and show off their skills and aim for number one in the previous titles.
Overall, the added bonuses in the game makes this game worth playing the more than two times. But wait there’s more! Activision also released a recent DLC where players can play the scrapped level Stormy Ascent for Crash 1. Stormy Ascent was a scrapped level created by Naughty Dog and it never came out in the final product because it was known as the hardest level of the game. I tried this stage and no joke, it was hard.
Graphics: Polygons vs Textures
Without exaggeration, the video game company Activision and Vicarious Visions really adds details to Crash. The companies worked really hard to make Crash look more furrier and wackier in 4K. The scenery in the stages is breathtaking; the water in the jungle levels look so pure and laboratories stages look menacing and dangerous. The classic music for all the stages and hub worlds are back for PS4 and it’s better than ever. When I heard these music again in this game, it felt like Crash never left and the same nostalgic feeling as a kid remained there waiting for me. The game even adds new detail action in the boss levels as well. For example, in Crash 1 HD where you fight N. Brio, you do damage on him by jumping on N. Brio’s green slime monster and the liquids squirt at him. Originally on PS1, you jump on these enemies and somehow, they affected N. Brio. Another example in the HD games is in Crash 2 where you fight N. Gin; Crash actually shows motion when he throws Wumpa fruits as opposed to the classic PS1 in which Crash “magically” shoots fruit from his body. Personally, I really like the touch up on the game and it make it look appealing.
Flaws: NoT 100% perfect
As much as I enjoy this game, I want to address some nitpicking details that I noticed from fans that I also want to talk about. Maybe it is just me, but I feel like the Crash games are a little bit too sensitive when fighting enemies. I sometimes die from the weakest enemies if I don’t jump at the right spot or body slam and it can be annoying and embarrassing. Still, I will let it slide. Another detail to take notice that some audio from the villains are either modified or removed in this game. In the boss battle in Crash 1 and 2 where you fight Ripper Roo, his iconic hyena laugh is changed. I really like his old laugh.
Dingodile, an enemy introduced in Warped, last comment after you defeat him is removed. I don’t know why they took it off. (go to 2:06 of the video below)
Overall, to some new people of the series, this game is really hard in platforming and are calling this game, the new Dark Souls. Personally, it is challenging but that what makes Crash different and back then, platforming games was popular genre in PS1 era. I did found some parts easy and sometimes hard but it wasn’t impossible.
Conclusion: The collection worth having?
Is this game worth buying? Personally, I say yes if you want to experience some fun platforming game fun. This recent game is not bad for the price. I got my game for about $40 and the best part is that it comes with all three remastered games in one disc. If you remember playing Crash on the PS1 and you want to play this game again for PS4 with upgrades, get this game. If platforming is not your interest, it may not appeal to players or you don’t want to accept the challenges it offers. Activision and Vicarious Visions did an excellent job re-creating a PS classic and added some fun features. With the success of this game, Activision mentioned that they might think about tackling on other classic titles.
What do you guys think of this game? Comment down below for feedback!