Release Date: June 21st 2019
Platforms: Playstation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
In 2017, Crash went back to his roots with the gorgeous N Sane Trilogy, featuring the most iconic games of the franchise to this day. And now, its fourth game got a remake as well. Time to start racing again!
Nitros Oxide, the self-entitled fastest racer in the galaxy, has challenged Earth’s best driver to a race. If Earth wins, Oxide will leave the planet alone, however, if Oxide wins, he’ll turn the entire planet into a… parking lot. Since Earth doesn’t have anyone with the title of “best racer”, a championship started to decide who would face Oxide. Choose your favorite character from the Crash Bandicoot universe (quite literally in this remake) and get ready to save Earth by speeding.
This game plays almost exactly as the original. You can use power-ups, make them stronger through wumpa fruits, and most importantly, drift. For those who never played this game, it does look similar to the likes of Mario Kart. However, this game is not as casual. Instead of a simple drift, where you hold it for some time and get a boost, you can get up to three boosts on the same drift. Also, you can start another drift right after the previous one ends. This game gives the player a lot more control of their speed. If you know how to do these boosts properly, you can keep a turbo throughout the entire race. Because of that, it can get very competitive with the newly introduced online gameplay. It’s not that simple to learn, but it is very satisfying to master.
Believe it or not, but as hinted before, this racing game has got a story mode. It’s very uncommon for racing games, but it’s one of the first to do so. In this mode, you have many areas to choose from, and each area has four tracks. You can practice your driving in these larger areas, and then you can go for a race, just like the original. The only difference is the separation between “Classic Mode” and “Nitro Fueled Mode”. In “Classic”, you can only choose the original eight racers in their default karts. The game will start off easy difficulty and then it will increase eventually. In “Nitro Fueled”, you can choose whatever difficulty right from the beginning and also any character you have already unlocked. You can fight Oxide with Oxide. But beware, as this game’s Hard difficulty is harder than the originals, which is a nice way to make even the veterans feel challenged. Also, don’t forget that, since it’s a PSOne remake, the adventure mode isn’t that long. It can be completed in a few hours tops, unless you’re going for the 100% completition. Or 101%, if you’re up to it.
Some people might be a bit more skeptical with this game compared to N Sane Trilogy. After all, this time it isn’t a trilogy. And a PSOne game is not nearly as big as a current gen title. But fear not. There are many new additions in here.
Firstly, tracks. You have every single track from the original game and from Crash Nitro Kart (CNK). Plus, they’ve released an original track every single month so far. Another thing are the characters. They increased the roster significantly, with racers like N Brio, Koala Kong, Komodo Moe. And not just Naughty Dog era characters. Some of them from the PS2-era were added as well, like Nina Cortex and Pasadena O’ Possum. Unlock them and use whoever you want.
The Grand Prix are seasonal events that take place each month. It gives us a new track (as mentioned), alongside new racers and skins. To unlock these things you need Wumpa Coins, which are obtained simply by playing the game. The mode that gives the most coins, though, is the online races. Microtransactions are here too, so you can buy these coins as well. Although, Beenox promised not to add them, causing quite a stir with the game community. Still, the fact they are giving new and free content that you just have to unlock – with purchasing them with real money being left optional – is incredible, and makes the game only bigger. It has become so much more than it was when it launched, so personally, I applaud their work.
The feature we’ve all been waiting for. Now you can race with your friends online in this very competitive mode, might I add. Online mode can be brutal, but let’s face it, that’s the fun of it. Here you have the opportunity to put everything you learn into action, in hopes of defeating everyone who stands in your way. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work as well as it should. One player hosts the game, which means if he leaves, the game ends. But worse than that, the online mode can lag a lot. You’ll get squashed without even knowing how. I remember once when I was in first place and someone put a TNT crate in front of me (which means the person would have to be in front of me, even though I was in first place). Not to mention the fact that you might finish first in a race, yet the game will you in third or fourth place for no apparent reason. These issues are not as frequent, but sadly, they still happen more than they should.
Another well made remake for Activision to put on their list. Fluid, beautiful and nostalgic, this game is actually a lot more than people expected it to be, thanks to all the extra content and the continuous content we keep getting monthly. I can not express enough how amazed I am with Beenox. All they have to do now is fix servers instability, and they could literally have a perfect game on their library. For those who like to race, this is definetely worthy checking out.