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“Crash Bandicoot 4”, a modern twist on a beloved classic

(Photo courtesy of: Eurogamer) “”Crash Bandicoot 4″ is the lastest installment in the series.”

Ashley Greene
Connector Contributor

Everyone’s favorite bandicoot has returned in “Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time”, three years after the “Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy” was released in 2017. This new game maintains the style and characters that players have come to love while adding some exciting new features for gameplay. The classic platform game was originally created by Naughty Dog in 1996 and is now under ownership by Activision. This new version was developed by Toys for Bob and Beenox, which was released in 2020.

At the start of the game, players are once again met by evil masterminds, Dr. Neo Cortex, Uka Uka, and N. Tropy, who are plotting their next plan to defeat Crash Bandicoot and take over the world. While trying to escape from the space prison that they were sent to following their demise in the trilogy, Uka Uka creates a quantum rift, a gap that opens the door to all universes. This rift forms quantum masks that are scattered throughout the game, allowing Crash to phase different matter in and out.

It is now up to Crash and his guide Aku Aku to find the quantum masks and close the rift. And what better place to start this mission than where his adventures always begin: N. Sanity Beach.

This new version offers two types of playstyles, modern and retro. In the modern style, players can always return to the checkpoint and have unlimited lives, which increases the accessibility of the game. The retro style is the same as the original where players have limited lives and must restart the level if they die. However, collecting 100 wumpa fruit allows Crash to gain a life, making it easier to play in retro mode.

The gameplay stays true to the original. Players playing as Crash must overcome various obstacles and villains to reach the end of the level. Each level completed expands the map and unlocks another level. Throughout the levels, there are crates placed along the path that can be broken and contain wumpa fruit.

While the end goal is to finish the level, players can earn gems as the game progresses. These can be earned through completing the level, breaking all the crates, only dying three times or less within a run or finding a hidden gem in each level, a new feature compared to past versions.

By collecting gems, players can unlock different skins for Crash to take on a variety of looks. In addition to gems, a new item called flashback tapes are scattered throughout levels that unlock bonus levels that are even more challenging.

What stands out in this version is the increased difficulty of the game. While “Crash Bandicoot” games have never been simple, this version is particularly tricky with the added mechanics of a grind rail, rope swing, and wall jumping. Players who are familiar with the original game will be happy to know that the double jump feature is included from the start, allowing Crash to reach higher boxes or ledges.

The music and sound effects are another highlighting quality of the franchise. The music in “Crash Bandicoot 4” was composed by Walter Mair. His previous work includes music provided for “Grand Theft Auto IV.” With upbeat tunes and varying instruments, players can count on a catchy beat to play alongside.

In contrast to the complicated levels, players are met with hilarious commentary from the different bosses that Crash is faced with. Additionally, Crash’s infamous remarks and humorous dance moves are something players can look forward to.

While Crash is the main character, this new version allows for the opportunity to play the levels as his sister, Coco. Once players reach a certain point in the game, some of the bosses who are defeated become playable characters. This allows an interesting chance to play as some of the maddest villains!

“Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time” is a wonderful addition to the series. It maintains the character and quality that fans of the game love while adding some fresher elements heightening the difficulty and visuals. It is available on a variety of platforms making it accessible to most gamers. These platforms include the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 or 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Series S, Steam, and Microsoft Windows.

Overall Grade: A

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