After the suitably “N. Sane” events of the original trilogy, Crash Bandicoot, at long last, is back!
By Virgin TV Edit
It’s safe to say a fair bit has changed since 1998. Thankfully, 22 years since Crash Bandicoot: Warped, Crash Bandicoot is back with a brand new entry to the acclaimed main series. Sure, you’ve seen him in kart racers, reboots, spin-offs and whatnot, but with It’s About Time, the franchise’s main storyline is set to finally continue.
Colourful, innovative and ridiculously detailed, Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time looks like Crash is back with a bang. Like all the best new entries to a long-standing series, it’s been designed with Crash veterans and new fans alike in mind, too.
But before you go jumping in, check out all the big questions facing Crash as he leaps back onto consoles…
As is often the case with legendary cartoon gaming villains, it seems Dr Cortex just – won’t – stop! Following the events of Warped, It’s About Time sees the aforementioned villain escape from captivity and open up a rift in time and space itself, prompting him to embark on a multidimensional quest for world domination.
Crash and his sister Coco are called up to put a stop to his dastardly plan, the pair scouring the multiverse for a number of gameplay altering “Quantum Masks” which will allow them to repair the rift, and (hopefully) scupper Cortex’s plan.
Ohhhh momma, this is where it gets really good. Put simply, It’s About Time features some of the smoothest, most instinctive and straight-up fun platforming both in the series, and the genre as a whole.
Varied levels constantly pose new challenges (wall-running and rail-riding, anyone?) and switch up the gameplay so that players never feel anything other than giddy, childish excitement at what’s happening onscreen.
Sure, like all Crash titles, the odd dodgy camera angle can cause you to mistime a jump or two. But it never detracts from the sheer satisfaction that can be had with It’s About Time’s intuitive, familiar yet refreshing platforming.
The aforementioned Quantum Masks also present new pathways through levels, tweaking the mechanics and making you crave the time when you can return to each one and reach tucked away areas.
“Retro Mode” also replicates the previous games’ limited lives, in which players start with a set number of lives and, if running low, must “find” extra in order to keep going. Alternatively, “Modern Mode” swaps the collectible lives out for a death tally which increases for each character as the game progresses.
Though Crash, Coco, Cortex and Tawna are characters fans will know and love to see once again, It’s About Time takes the deceptively simple but ingenious step of allowing players to control three additional characters alongside Crash in a way that can subtly change the gameplay.
Tawna, Cortex and Dingodile all feature in their own levels where their respective weaponry and contrasting abilities are able to shine. Grappling guns (allowing players to get to previously hard to reach places), a laser gun (transforming enemies into platforms), and even a vacuum gun all shake up the core gameplay and prevent It’s About Time from stagnating.
Is there multiplayer?
It’s About Time features local co-op, meaning you can play through levels with up to four players and compete in a number of modes. Our favourite? Time Trial, without a doubt.
Pfft, YES! Absolutely tons, to be precise. Gems, wumpa fruit and VHS Tapes (allowing players to explore bonus levels set before the events of the original Crash Bandicoot) are all available to find, collect and horde in It’s About Time.
Which consoles can It’s About Time be played on?
Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time is available to download and play on both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.