Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped
Cortex failed at gathering the crystals and gems, so his boss, Uka Uka, recruits an old friend, Dr. N. Tropy, to travel back in time to retrieve them. Crash and his sister, Coco, must travel through different time periods to put a stop to their evil plans.
This game is simply known as Crash Bandicoot Warped, but it is the third game in the series for the PS1. It takes what was good about the second game and adds even more moves and features. While the first game has its charm, the third has the most to do, not just with abilities and variety in levels, but also the relic challenges which are introduced in this game.
This game was played using the PlayStation emulator, DuckStation. I increased the resolution, and PGXP is on. Much like the other Crash games, widescreen will not work because the game is optimized in a way that everything off screen from the 4:3 viewing angle is not rendered. There is definitely more than the original game, but still quite jarring and not pleasant to look at.
Following the events of Crash Bandicoot 2, where Crash defeated Cortex’s plans for world domination, Cortex’s ship comes crashing down to Earth. He comes face to face with his boss, Uka Uka, a mask similar to Crash’s Aku Aku, but with more sinister intentions. He’s upset that Cortex didn’t retrieve the crystals and gems, so he recruited Dr. N. Tropy who creates a time machine to retrieve the crystals and gems from the past. Crash and his sister Coco must find a way to stop him.
By getting all 25 crystals, but not all gems, Cortex and Uka Uka plan on stealing all the crystals from Crash. However, Crash foils his plans once again. But, not all hope is lost for them. Uka Uka suggests they get the gems to outsmart Crash and finally take over the world. However, when Crash gets all the gems and defeats Uka Uka and Cortex, Cortex and his minions get sucked into a vortex while Crash and his friends escape. The vortex sends Cortex and N. Tropy back to prehistoric times where they are babies, fighting over Uka Uka.
As a platformer, Crash goes from level to level, going through various obstacles in a 3D environment, avoiding enemies and getting the crystal somewhere in the level. There is also gems to collect for getting all boxes, as well as relics which are a new addition to the game. There are bonus areas within the levels. And a welcoming new addition is a box counter for the main level and within the bonus areas. There are TNT crates which explode after 3 seconds of jumping on them, and nitro crates which are instant death, so you have to hit the nitro switch (usually at the end of the level) to destroy all of them since they count as boxes. There are also slot crates, which rotate what is inside faster and faster until it turns into an iron crate and cannot be destroyed. It’s important to get these fast or else you’ll miss a box.
After completing the level at least once, you can re-enter and collect the clock for time trial mode. In this mode, you race against the clock by getting to the end as quickly as you can, collecting time boxes along the way that stop the time for 1-3 seconds. By completing the level under certain requirements, you’ll be awarded a relic, either sapphire, gold, or platinum depending on your time. Time trials are very difficult, especially when going for platinum. You’ll need a gold relic or higher to get the secret final gem, but only a sapphire to fully complete the game.
Crash can collect 100 Wumpa fruit to give him an extra life, and collect Aku Aku masks to give him an extra hit. Collecting three will render Crash invincible for a brief period of time.
Unlike the first game where Crash moves linearly through the island and levels, and unlike the second game where there are different floors for each set of levels, this game condenses it all to one hub. There is one central hub with bridges connecting to the different set of levels. There are five levels per world and then the boss. You must collect all the crystals on the levels to battle against the boss. Once the boss is defeated, Crash will learn a new move and be able to move onto the next set of levels.
The moves are:
- Super Charged Body Slam – Slam enemies and boxes, even harder
- Double Jump – Jump double the amount, but you have to do it at the top of your jump
- Death Tornado Spin – Spin longer and faster, and even glide a bit in the air
- Fruit Bazooka – Fire wumpa fruit at targets
- Speed Shoes – Run faster (useful for time trials)
The graphics are on-par with the second game. They maximize the appearance of the game, and it’s very detailed for a PS1 title. Each environment and enemy looks great.
Sound / Music
Like the prior Crash games, the music is very fitting and catchy. It’s very similar to the second game’s music, and was composed by the same people. However, there is no official soundtrack that was released for the game.