THE Crash Bandicoot spun his way back into the spotlight this past Friday with the release of the highly anticipated newest installment in the Bandicoot franchise, Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time, for the PS4 and Xbox One. The game is the sequel to the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy and the fourth game chronologically, following the events of 1998’s Crash Bandicoot: Warped. It’s been 22 long years since we were last graced with a new adventure in this classic series.
One of the G.O.A.T’s is back! And it’s about time.
Crash holds a special place in my heart, as Crash Bandicoot—the first installment in the series—was one of the first games I ever owned, for the vintage PlayStation 1. It was that game that led to my first gaming experiences and first late-night gaming sessions leading well into the crack of dawn. With that being said, I’m absolutely elated to see that Crash Bandicoot 4 has remained faithful to the original games as a simple 3D platformer, set in beautifully crafted, cartoon-inspired levels. Big shoutout to game developers Toys for Bob for not feeling the need to turn Crash into an open world experience or some type of battle arena, but instead using the original formula to craft an adventure that is familiar yet remarkable.
All new adventures, masks, and abilities
As mentioned, Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time is the fourth game chronologically and the eighth main installment in the Crash Bandicoot series. The game’s story follows Crash Bandicoot and his sister Coco as they once again fight to save the multiverse from Doctor Neo Cortex and Doctor N. Tropy. It also features the ability to control three other characters who have their own unique gameplay and levels– Tawna, Dingodile, and the mad scientist Cortex himself.
The core gameplay features that have made Crash a classic are still intact, though rest assured, there are definitely still some exciting new features added to this latest installment. For starters, Crash has a few new abilities — wall running, rope swinging, and zip-lining. Throughout the series, Crash and friends have used the abilities of special spirits reincarnated into masks throughout their adventures to help defeat the forces of evil. It’s About Time introduces four new powerful spirits known as the Quantum Masks. Crash and Coco use their powers to avoid obstacles and cross specific areas, with abilities ranging from manipulating gravity to slowing down time. They are even equipped with fresh ‘fits to match the corresponding Quantum Mask upon using their powers.
These four masks “bend the rules of reality” as the powerful protectors of times and space. There’s Ika-Ika, who grants the ability to instantly flip your center of gravity; Kupuna-Wa, who allows you to slow down time; Lani-Loli, who allows one to phase-shift elements in and out of existence, and Akano, who grants the ability to hover and glide in the air.
You can catch Crash put these abilities to use in the video below.
Reviews & Ratings
The return of the legendary hero didn’t disappoint in Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time. The general consensus is that the game is a very successful comeback from one of the most popular video game series of all time and has received high praise all around from the gaming community—some have even called it the best game in the entire legendary series.
Mike Epstein of Gamespot (check out the review in the link) called Crash 4 “a pitch-perfect revival of the classic platformer franchise. “
Stacey Henley of NME called it “a perfect blend of past, present and future,” giving it a four and a half out of a five-star rating.
Jade King of Trustedreviews called it “an excellent platformer, and carefully builds upon the legacy established by Naughty Dog so many years ago.”
I looked at many reviews and ratings from respected gaming sites during my quest to get a true feel of what the community has to say about Crash Bandicoot 4, and just about all of them gave the game very favorable reviews; You’ll be hard pressed to find anyone who gave it any lower than a 4 out of 5 or an 8 out of 10 rating.
IGN did a very thorough review and analysis of Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time that you can watch in the video below.
Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time is an effective modern platformer which also retains the classic spirit of the original games. It effectively fuses the appeal of today’s gaming graphics and creative gameplay to produce a product that still manages to serve as refreshing nostalgia for those who grew up playing the wonderful Crash series such as myself. I haven’t played it yet, but the game certainly sounds and looks like a strong addition to the already legendary Crash Bandicoot legacy.