So… a Crash Bandicoot game? Where to begin… OK, well, check out this guide!
Crash Bandicoot – The Story So Far
Oh, and Masks. Magical masks are kind of a big deal, as you’ll see. There’s a mask named Aku Aku, who helps Crash and Coco. There’s another mask who helps the bad guys. He’s called Uka Uka and he is Aku Aku’s brother.
Ah, almost forgot the… hmm. Not sure what he is. Some kind of mutant croc from…Australia, maybe? Dingodile.
OK, look, this is getting too complicated. I’ll throw together some bios or something that you can look at later, but in the meantime, let’s play!
Select Your Playstyle!
- Retro – Familiar to classic Crash players, you accumulate lives by collecting Wumpa (100 Wumpa = 1 life), if you run out of lives then you restart at the beginning of the level instead of the last checkpoint.
- Modern – After you die, your Death Counter will increase, but you’ll always restart at the last Checkpoint. No, it’s not a crutch – these levels are a legit challenge. (Fear not, you’ll die plenty.)
And we’re off!
Welcome to N.Sanity Island!
Run/Jump/Smash: There’s a whole lot of real estate between you and the end of the level. Run and Jump your way through it!
On the keyboard, use [W,A,S,D] keys to control movement, and use [Spacebar] to jump. You can hold down [K] to crawl.
(This Guide will reference the Default controls for keyboard. If you want to customize your keyboard controls and/or you’re using a gamepad, you can change/view your controls from within the Options menu.)
Use different attacks to defeat enemies, and you can smash Crates to collect Wumpa.
- Spin Attack [J] – Good to take out most enemies! Also a good way to quickly clear out stacks of Crates.
- Jump Attack [Spacebar] – Many (but not all!) enemies can be defeated by landing on them after a Jump. Landing on Crates will cause you to bounce off them. (Different Crates respond to bounce differently – see Crate Expectations below!)
- Slam Attack – After jumping, press the Secondary key [K] to smash piles of Crates below you!
- Slide Attack – Great against enemies, use [K] while running to start your slide.
- Double Jump – Need to get a little extra distance? When jumping, you can press the Jump key [Spacebar] again to get a little higher. Or further. Or both!
Tip: Precision jumping in 3d games can be hard to judge, so we added something to help. When jumping, check out the little circle beneath you – it will show you where you’ll land so you can line yourself up for the best possible landing! If you hate help, you can turn it off in the Options menu. (But if you hate help, why are you reading this guide?!)
And that’s just the basics – throughout the game, you’ll also swing on Ropes, glide along Vines, find places to Wall Run, ride animals, and plenty more.
Oh, and as mentioned earlier, you’ll die. A lot. It’s kind of a thing with Crash games. But it’s okay! You’ll get better and Crash will die less. Win/win!
This isn’t a full list of all the Crate types, but should be enough to get you started.
Regular Crate – Destroyed when landed on or hit with an Attack, worth 1 Wumpa.
Bounce Crate – Bouncing on a Bounce Crate gives 2 Wumpa, allows 5 bounces before destroyed.
TNT Crate – Bouncing on a TNT crate starts a 3-second countdown to an explosion!
Nitro Crate – Explodes when touched* – it’s a good idea to keep away from them.
Arrow Crate – Gives the player a much higher bounce.
Strong Crate – Destroyed only by a Slam Attack.
Checkpoint Crate – SUPER important Crate, you’ll respawn here if you die instead of back at the beginning of the level.
Aku Aku Crate – Gives an Aku Aku mask, which absorbs hits from enemies/hazards. One mask gives 1 hit of protection, collect a second to give 2 hits of protection, and collect a third to become Invincible from all hits for 20 seconds!
(* Technically a Nitro Crate explodes RIGHT AFTER it gets touched. If only there was a way to Slow Time, you might be able to use them as platforms. Ah well.)
You don’t need to do Bonus Areas to complete the level, but you’ll need to complete the Bonus Areas if you want to get ALL the Crates in the level. “Why would I want to do that?” I hear you asking. Well, keep reading until you hit the ‘Collectible Items Guide’ later on.
Lani-Loli can Phase Shift items/platforms/enemies in/out of existence.
Akano upgrades your spin power to be ultra-destructive and gives you the ability to ‘glide’ while spinning!
Kapuna-Wa can Slow Time (!!) – but be careful, she can only do it for a short while before time is restored to its normal speed.
Ika-Ika reverses Crash/Coco’s gravity! (Don’t leave footprints on the ceiling, our cleanup crew is already overworked.)
- Toggle a Mask Power with the I key.
Playable Heroes (and… Villains?!)
There are other characters that you’ll control during the game, these occur during specific levels. They have different abilities than Crash and Coco.
Tawna comes from a universe where she’s the hero – a confident, accomplished adventurer. She’s been all over the world and has yet to meet a cliff she won’t dive off, a mountain she won’t climb, a cave she won’t explore. When she accidentally falls into another dimension, she doesn’t even bat an eye. More worlds to explore are cool by her. She has a hookshot ability and has a wicked roundhouse kick.
Dingodile is a creature of simple desires. He just wants to do whatever, whenever, with whoever – none of your business, mate. Dingo would have been happy to lay low and live out the rest of his days in peace… well, relative peace. He finds out the local bat population has taken a disliking to him when they blow up his beloved diner. He takes his explosive revenge, but before he can rebuild, he winds up falling through space and time to another dimension. Dingodile uses his Vacuum Gun to grab Crates – and can put the gun into reverse to hover over gaps!
Dr. Neo Cortex is Crash’s oldest enemy, his arch-nemesis, and, perhaps somewhat awkwardly, his creator. Cortex is your classic mad scientist – though he’s less interested in science as a discipline but instead more as a means to his nefarious ends. He won’t be content until he rules the world, though heaven knows what he’d do with it once he had it. Cortex has a Dash ability, and uses his Ray Gun to transform enemies into different forms – ‘regular’ or ‘extra bouncy’ platforms!
Collectible Items Guide
There’s a LOT to collect in this game, but you might find that you just want to get to the end of the level and find out what happens in the story. Totally fine! We wanted to make a game that everyone can enjoy, but has layers of stuff to keep them coming back for more for those who want to keep playing past the ‘you win!’ stage.
Each level gives you an opportunity to get 6 Clear Gems on a Normal* playthrough:
- Collect 40% of all Wumpa in the level
- Collect 60% of all Wumpa in the level
- Collect 80% of all Wumpa in the level
- All Crates in the level broken
- Finished level with 3 or fewer Deaths
- Collected the level’s Hidden Gem
(*Yes, I’ll talk about Normal playthroughs later.)
“Why do I want Clear Gems,” you ask? Check out ‘Skins’ below!
See ‘Color Gem Found’ in the image above? Some levels also contain a well-hidden Color Gem – Red, Green, Blue, Yellow. Collecting a Color Gem in one level unlocks a Gem Path in another level – possibly more than one! Yes, this means that in order to get ALL the Crates in a level that contains a Gem Path, you’ll need to first obtain the corresponding Color Gem in the other level.
No, I’m not going to tell you how/where Color Gems appear. Yes, I might be a jerk for not telling you. But rest assured you will KNOW I am a jerk when you find out how/where they appear.
Skins obtained in earlier levels require you to grab all 6 Gems in a Normal playthrough of the level (There’s that word Normal again…), while Skins available from later levels require up to 12 Gems!
Okay, I can hear you already: “Wait, what? You said there were 6 Gems in a level, how am I supposed to get 12?” Well, remember when I talked about Normal playthroughs? Later in the game you’ll unlock a whole new way to replay levels – N. Verted Mode!
N. Verted Mode
Look for the clock token near the beginning of the level, then collect it – a Timer will start, and you’ll race against a speedy Ghost! (For you ‘old school’ players, you can turn off seeing the Ghost in the Options menu.)
In Time Trial mode, many Crates are changed into Time Crates – hit them for time bonuses that stop the Timer.
Reaching the end of the level will measure your time and award you a Relic if you beat the Ghost time. There are multiple tiers of Relics awarded, ranked in difficulty: Sapphire, Gold, Platinum – and the ultra-difficult Purple Relic, which means you beat the best time of our top Crash player on the Toys For Bob Design Team!
There’s a Relic you can earn that isn’t part of a Time Trial. If you get no deaths + all Crates broken on a playthrough of the level, you will unlock an N.Sanely Perfect Relic for that level!
Do you NEED an N.Sanely Perfect Relic? Well, no. While not necessary to collect, the N.Sanely Perfect Relics are the ultimate challenge to be conquered.
Sound neat? It is! But here’s the catch: You can only collect the Flashback Tape within a level if you start at the beginning and make it all the way to the Tape without dying. If you die once, you’ll have to restart the level to reset the Tape, otherwise it will remain ghosted and you can’t pick it up. Levels occurring earlier in the game have these Tapes appear near the beginning of the level. In later levels…they’re nearer to the end. (It’ll be a challenge! Who doesn’t love a challenge?)
Once you retrieve a Tape, you can access your newly-collected Flashback Level from one of the special Flashback locations on the Dimensional Map, or from the Menu.
The Flashback Levels have their own Flashback Relics that you can earn by doing the following:
Sapphire: Complete the Flashback Level
Gold: Complete the Flashback Level with 90% of the Crates broken
Platinum: Complete the Flashback Level with ALL Crates broken
This Game Progress screen (from the Save Slot menu) shows every Collectible earned: all Gems, Relics, Flashback tapes, and Flashback Relics. This works out to the game being ‘completed’ at 106%! (Is our math bad? Or is there something about 106% that makes sense? It’s a secret!)
Phew! I’m exhausted. I’m sure I’ve forgotten something. (Or maybe I’m just keeping things hidden.) Either way, this Guide should give you more than enough info to make your own mischief for the bad guys and do Crash and Coco proud. We at Toys For Bob are excited for you to play this game – we had a ton of fun making it and it’s been a great pleasure to see so many people enjoying it. Or cursing our names. Or both!
Easter Eggs – SPOILERS(?)
These might be considered *SPOILERS* for the story, so read at your own risk.
Lani-Loli was originally going to be 2 different characters that each popped into existence depending on which ‘phase’ the mask was in.
Akano went through a few design changes – at one point using the mask made Crash/Coco super-heavy and invulnerable to damage, but couldn’t double-jump.
There’s a seamonster mini-boss named Louise that is named after a Toys For Bob team member, Lou Studdert. (You’ll be relieved to know that Lou does not have tentacles.)
You might see some visitors from other Toys For Bob games float past in the background of the Off Beat level.
One of our artists placed some hidden Arcade Game cabinets in one of the Space levels that – as far as we can tell – no one has found yet.
Late in the game, during The Crate Escape mission, you run and jump on giant cargo containers as they fall out of the back of Neo’s Airship. Originally it was supposed to be at a much lower altitude and you’d be buzzing past skyscrapers at ridiculous speeds, but nobody could complete it because of motion-sickness issues.
Music To Our Ears
In Off Beat, pay attention to the movement of the platforms and the projectiles fired by the horn players. Listen closely to the music which will help you anticipate the right moment to make it through the obstacles. Oh, and don’t forget to lay down some awesome solos with the interactive keyboards and drums!
Check out the robot’s mad drumming skills in the Stage Dive boss fight – our animators used the MIDI note data from the drum track to create bespoke animations sequences for each section.
Once you defeat N.Gin, you’ll also notice that the disabled robot drummer in Overland Map will come alive and start drumming to the beat of the music.
While you’re exploring the Overland Map, also notice how the music instrumentation and style smoothly morphs based on which area of the map you travel to. We had great fun working on these remixes!