My First Crash Bandicoot

Before owning my PlayStation 5, the only time I had played Crash Bandicoot was inside of Uncharted 4. I remember Crash being the PlayStation mascot back in the day. He was Sony’s bad boy (aka Sonic). I was still a Nintendo kid at the time so I never truly got into the Crash Bandicoot series.

Here’s Crash starring in a recent ad for Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time with rapper Quavo.

The first PS5 game I purchased was Spider-Man: Miles Morales. My entire library other than that and Astro’s Playroom was made up of PS4 digital and physical games — some received next-gen upgrades. After setting up my PS5 I dove into the PS Plus collection and sampled some of the last gen’s greatest hits — Control, Monster Hunter: World, Mortal Kombat X.

When I came across the Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy I downloaded it instantly. Even though I never got into the Crash Bandicoot games and have continued to stay away from them, I’ve always been interested. Especially when Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time was announced. I started thinking, Now, “it’s about time” for the N. Sane Trilogy, but I never bought it. Now that it was being offered to me for FREE I decided I would first beat the trilogy and then move onto Crash 4.

Tough Bandicoot

The thing is, I didn’t know this series would be so damn hard. I knew Crash Bandicoot games were tricky, but I didn’t know they were insanely, infuriatingly difficult. Seeing this goofy character in those old PlayStation commercials when I was a kid made me think this guys games would be silly and fun, not seriously impossible.

I haven’t played a game like this in some time. A game that I have to take a break from because it makes me angry. I guess this happened in Hollow Knight at times — with those tough to beat bosses. I would try over and over and over again.

My goal at first was to beat all three Crash Bandicoot games, write a post about each adventure and finally jump into Crash 4. This idea was born about three months ago and I’m still stuck on the first game, so instead I decided to write a post about the things that are holding me back on my journey to It’s About Time.

Not too long ago, on a video game forum, I saw someone post that they hated Crash Bandicoot games because they’re so hard. I sort of agreed, but the truth is that I’m frustrated because I want to love them, but they don’t want my love. Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time looks very cool and interesting so I’m hoping to figure out this original trilogy, so by the time I reach Crash 4 I’ll be a Crash pro.

Game Over

Any time I play Crash Bandicoot I see this Game Over screen multiple times. In fact, I started deciding that any time I see this face it’s time to stop playing for the night. Crash has quickly become my “last chance game” of the night. I start off playing whatever big game I’m enjoying at the moment and once it’s almost time for bed I switch over to Crash and play through one set of lives, until I inevitably come to this screen… GAME OVER and Good Night!

Game Over screen – Crash Bandicoot

This usually happens pretty quickly.

Too Many Boxes

There are many platformers and games like Crash Bandicoot that feature secret areas and items, but you can also usually ignore them and make your way to the end of each level without too many problems. The thing that makes Crash Bandicoot extra difficult is that just making it to the end of these levels is insanely hard. Of course, you do want to collect all of the apples (are they apples or peaches? What does the Bandicoot eat?) fruits.

Below is the closest I’ve come to finding all of the boxes in a level — I missed four. There were levels that I thought I definitely smashed all of the boxes, only to find out that I had missed ten or more.

Winning, but not winning: You didn’t get all of the boxes dummy! –Crash Bandicoot

I did finally find my first secret area/passage. This came while playing through a level later on in the game. I went off to the side and found a secret entrance to walk behind the wall. After that I thought for a second, Maybe it’s time to go back and look for more secrets. Then, I thought of all of the time it took just to get past those other levels and decided against it.

Secret Passage in Crash Bandicoot.

There are many parts in this game where I find myself failing over and over again — to enemies, platforms or puzzles. I’ve gone from having well over ten lives to just one life left to live in less than a minute.

In the second two pictures below, I would make it nearly to the top of this platform puzzle only to go after some hard to reach boxes and fall back down to the ground. This happened in most elevated platform puzzle I’ve come across in Crash Bandicoot.

Next Steps

I’m not done with Crash yet. I do plan on beating Crash Bandicoot (the first one) and for some reason I feel (in my mind) that the second and third will get easier. I believe that part of the problem with this game being so hard is that it is an older game. I know this is a remastered port, but the controls and feel of the game are still made to play as it did back then. It’s just supposed to look nicer — and it does.

I do like that the levels change perspective throughout the game. The levels change from 2D to 3D. There’s side scrolling platformers, downhill and uphill runners, stationary boss fights and more. It’s kind of impressive that in 1996, they were able to add all of these different types of levels into one game starring a goofy bandicoot.

For some reason, Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time looks extremely exciting to me. But maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it’s only for people who loved the punishing gameplay of the original trilogy. I will return with more tales of my journey with Crash Bandicoot if I ever beat this first game, the next one or any other ones.

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