This might come as a shock to you: I’m not a fan of the Crash Bandicoot series. I know this doesn’t make sense, as I’m British, and we in Blighty love the mad marsupial as much as we love pie-and-mash and rewarding corruption… To be fair – I’m not a fan of Britain either. My general mood toward Crash is rooted in my dislike of “into-the-screen” platform games. There’s a special place in the underworld reserved for the people who decided platform games needed to make the transition from the tried-and-tested horizontal layout.
I personally find it bizarre that a genre entirely based around perfectly gauging distance would choose to have its camera perspective changed in such an unholy fashion. And while the 3D Mario titles get away with it – thanks to their softer gameplay pace and large open areas – Crash Bandicoot seemed to want to capture the same frenzied speed and funneled action of a Sonic the Hedgehog, but with an all-new depth perception issues, adding elements of frustration and false difficulty to the proceedings.
Still, as technology progresses and visual clarity improves, this has become somewhat less of a problem in modern 3D platformers. It has taken many years, but developer Toys for Bob has turned me around with its excellent Crash Bandicoot 4, which has won me over with its sprited world, infectious personality, creative level design, and fun, wholesome aesthetic.
I’ve finally found a Crash Bandicoot platform game that I enjoy playing. It’s about time.