Howdy ladies and gents and welcome to Day #28 of my Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews where I’ll be giving you reviews of some of my most nostalgic video games from my childhood. And today we have the first and only PlayStation game in my nostalgic list in the form of the awesome Crash Bandicoot.
Now before I get into this review you may have noticed that most of my game reviews have been mainly from Nintendo-based consoles like the Game Boy, SNES and N64, and that’s simply due to the fact that I grew up as a Nintendo kid. Besides my Mega Drive, I played mainly Nintendo consoles because that’s all I owned, I only got to try out other consoles when went to visit family or friends. So I just wanted to clear that up before we continue on. So Crash Bandicoot, man this game takes me back. This is 90s classic gaming and one of the best games on the PlayStation 1.
Crash Bandicoot was a 3D platforming game released in 1996 for the PlayStation. To be honest the reason I liked Crash as a character so much was because he looked so crazy and reminded me a lot of Sonic the Hedgehog and Taz from Looney Tunes. This game is the first instalment in the Crash Bandicoot series and shows how Crash was created and what his connection is to the antagonist Doctor Neo Cortex. The story in this game follows Crash’s effort to stop his creators’ plans for world domination, clean up any pollution they have caused, and save his girlfriend Tawna, a female bandicoot also evolved by Doctor Cortex and Nitrus Brio.
When it comes to gameplay Crash Bandicoot follows the same basic rules of any other platforming game in terms of level design, attacks and level progression, but obviously there are unique aspects that come with this game too. In the game Crash must travel across the three islands to defeat his creator Doctor Cortex and rescue his girlfriend. The game’s broken up into levels which you must venture through and complete in order to advance through the game. You’re given a set amount of lives and you can lose them by being attacked by enemies or falling into water or pits. If you lose all of your lives you get a game over. When you control Crash, he can jump on enemies or spin into them with a tornado attack.
Most boxes in the game contain Wumpa Fruit (fruit that looks like apples or peaches), which give you an extra life if you collect 100 of them. Another awesome item found in boxes is the Witch Doctor’s Mask, which shields Crash from one enemy attack. Collecting three of these masks makes you imperviousness from all minor dangers. Then there’s arrow boxes send Crash further up in the air than his normal jump, while TNT boxes explode three seconds after you jump on them. And boxes with an exclamation mark on them cause previously intangible objects in the area to solidify. Check Point boxes allow you to restart from the previous where the Check Point box was opened when you lost a life. Special tokens can also be found inside boxes and when you collect three you’ll be teleported to a Bonus Round, in which you can collect loads of Wumpa Fruit and get special items. Also if you complete levels without losing a life and smashing all boxes then you can obtain gems that allow you to enter new areas that weren’t accessible before.
I was first introduced to Crash Bandicoot through my aunty on her PlayStation. I think it was one of the first 3D platformers I had played and it showed from how badly I used to play. I couldn’t properly anticipate things like avoiding hazards for timing my jumps so that I wouldn’t fall down pitfalls. I never really got that far in the game, so I can’t tell you too much besides what I can remember. All I can recall about this game was that its visuals were fantastic, vivid and colourful and the music was pretty good too and upon reflection the controls was actually very nice, I just wasn’t used to playing 3D platformers at the time. One thing I can say is that after my first encounter with Crash I was obsessed, I really liked playing the third game; Crash Bandicoot: Warped and I even had a Crash Bandicoot t-shirt which I got which I got back in either 1999 or 2000 and have worn on several non-uniform days in school for years. Unfortunately I lost the shirt last year in my house somewhere, but I do hope I find it, I’ve owned it for around 12 years and it still fits! 😀
In conclusion Crash Bandicoot is a hell of time and one of the most entertaining games I recall from the 90s. With an interesting story, solid gameplay and great graphics, this is one of those games that really need to be played by fans of platforming games. While the sequels to this series improve on this original design by miles, I still recommend that you find Crash Bandicoot on a PS1 or on PSN and give it a go.
Well that’s another review done; now we’ve only got two more to go! So be sure to stick around until Friday when I unleash the final two reviews! 😀