Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped is the best and most varied platform game,
This week, our editor Andrew King reviewed Jumping for Joy, a non-fiction book about the history of platformers, and it prompted me to revisit my love of the genre. While I find many modern endeavors both too simplistic and too stuffed with poorly executed concepts, platformers remain my favorite genre at heart. Either that or maybe video games were just better when I was a kid – whatever works. Anyway, this all got me thinking about Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped, my favorite video game of all time. This is when the platforms hit their peak, having seen a slow and steady climb to this point before falling off a cliff soon after. But there’s one thing we don’t talk about enough – that time Crash Bandicoot rode a crazy motorcycle.
The reason Crash 3 is my favorite isn’t just that the raw platforming is great, but there’s so much variety. There are underwater levels, there are chase levels, there are levels where you ride a tiger through the Great Wall of China, there are jet ski levels and plane dogfight levels, and of course, levels where Crash Bandicoot rides a crazy motorcycle. I believe I may have already mentioned this.
It’s a completely unique concept to the game. On paper, it’s just a race, but there’s so much more to it. For example, in the jet ski and tiger levels, where you instead play as Coco, these are always variants of a “real” Crash Bandicoot level. Your goal is to reach the end, you will lose lives when you die, there are checkpoints along the way – you know, it’s Crash. Except it’s Coco. Motorbike levels are closer to racing, and while racing isn’t a unique concept in video games, the way Warped merges platforming and racing elements is seamless and great.
When you start, you are in eighth place. The other cars are far ahead of you. They move a bit slower than you, but you’ll have to work hard to catch up. It’s a race, but unlike other racing games, you can’t influence other drivers at all. They can sometimes give you a side sweep if you sit next to them for an extended period of time, but most of the time they follow their lines exactly. You, platformer-style, must plot the best path to pass all seven of them, making sure to move carefully enough not to fall into a hole, crash into a barrier, or skid off the track. However, like in a racing game, you also need to be fast and play aggressive enough to overtake the slower cars as soon as possible, giving you a more open road to catch up to the racers ahead.
This mix of genres is even more impressive in time trial modes. Since the way you win these levels in normal mode is just to go fast, you’d think it would be child’s play, but running in the exact same line and at the same speed won’t win the counter-speed. show. Instead, you have to choose when to deviate from the best path in order to smash certain crates to freeze time for one, two, or three seconds respectively. It forces you to play the game as a platformer and a runner at the same time.
In the bonus levels, which also include a reference to Rings of Power (the Naughty Dog game, not the TV show), you’ll even get the UFO race in Area 51 if you manage to crash into the correct control panel. signage. In all Crash Bandicoot games, including the original trilogy (and in particular, Warped), Crash has always been a variety bandicoot, pushing you to play the game in different ways for different rewards. However, no before or since is as cool as that time Crash Bandicoot rode a sick motorcycle.
Next: How did Sonic Frontiers become my most anticipated game of 2022?