Crash Bandicoot is back in his self-titled N-Sane Trilogy available now on Playstation 4.
For years fans were calling for sequels or remakes to the classic Naughty Dog PlayStation 1 era Crash Bandicoot, for years no one answered, Crash seemingly stopped making appearances in the gaming industry for quite some time. Every E3, every PlayStation conference people were hoping for that beautiful announcement of Crash Bandicoots return or that Naughty Dog had acquired the IP back. Well, last year our dreams came true, Activision and Vicarious Visions were remaking Crash Bandicoot 1, 2 and 3 from the ground up. Speculation began running wild around the internet wondering if it was a remake with new features or a complete copy with a new look. Luckily the game is a beautiful remaster, but surely it should be more than a remaster because it is breathtakingly beautiful to look at and stays true to all of the originals. I had my doubts that no one could really restore it to the way it was but Vicarious Visions achieved it one million percent. Though I don’t remember Native Fortress being that difficult. Oh, boy was it rewarding when I eventually passed it.
Crash Bandicoot is a simple platformer where you need to take Crash from point A to point B avoiding obstacles along the way. If you want to 100% complete the game you’ll need to also smash all boxes and complete time trials. This goes for each game. The first game starts off simple with N-Sanity Beach and it eases you into the game a little, it shows you the moves you’ll need to be using to succeed later on. As time progresses and you move up the level selection hub the levels get more difficult, scenery changes and obstacles are added. Native Fortress had to be the hardest yet, I lost 21 lives on the platforms at the top of the level. While I struggled it sent me back many years ago where games were challenging and it rarely held your hand, you either didn’t complete it, bought a magazine with a walkthrough book inside if you were lucky or completed it because you were a champion. How anyone ever perfected Native Fortress is beyond me.
Moving on to the next games we hop into Crash Bandicoot 2, things were thrown around a bit more, nitro boxes were added, you could not touch them at all, you had to blow them all up at the end of a level with a metal crate. The pink crystals were added and even more challenges and obstacles awaited. I felt that Crash Bandicoot 2 threw the level themes around a lot more going from a futuristic cityscape to an ice valley full of slippery surfaces. Crash Bandicoot Warped then added many different types of vehicle levels in which you can race around on a motorbike with Crash or escape pirates on a water ski as Coco. Each game added more as they went along and that’s what I love about them, you can really see the progression, but underwater levels are just annoying.
Vicarious Visions have done a spectacular job in restoring an old game and placing it in the current year of 2017 and making it work. While many of the mechanics feel old, they have been completely reworked from the ground up. The game performs on the PlayStation 4 Pro beautifully and looks fantastic as well. Many times I was caught admiring the backgrounds of the level and just taking in the beauty. It felt as if you were playing a Pixar movie my daughter said. The music has been redone but still remains the same tune that we all know and love and they’ve really done a fantastic job with it all, the voice acting has also been redone but I honestly feel like they put a lot of work into this title and remaster and it’s everything the fans wanted.
I hope Vicarious Visions are giving themselves a massive pat on the back. They’ve achieved something special and given gamers what they wanted. I hope to see more Crash from Vicarious Visions in the future as they’ve proved it’s definitely in the right hands. If someone could get on a Spyro Trilogy Remake, that would be great. While the game is great I feel newcomers may struggle with its difficulty spike halfway through, I struggled at times but the challenge is rewarding when you’ve managed to beat it. I ran into no bugs what so ever, just good old nostalgic fun,