Between HD remasters, digital re-releases, and the like, ways to satisfy your nostalgia are not hard to come across these days. Sony Computer Entertainment president Andrew House recently offered hope to fans who would like to see the company revive some of its older franchises, including Crash Bandicoot--a series created by Naughty Dog, the developer now best known for The Last of Us and Uncharted. Given the studio's current focus on those types of games, you might expect the prospect of a new Crash from Naughty Dog to be completely dead. That's actually not the case, although there is a reason its focus has been elsewhere lately.
"It's never off the table," Naughty Dog community strategist Arne Meyer told IGN when asked about bringing back Crash. "It's not too much time passing, but it's the same issues we explored with the Jak game: Is it something that makes sense to us now? I mean, we still have people that worked on the Crash games in the studio. We never forget our past and it'd be great for nostalgic reasons. It'd be the same reason as why there isn't a Jak 4: I don't know if it's playing to our strengths right now."
Last year, Naughty Dog's Neil Druckmann revealed that the studio set out to reboot another of its old series, Jak and Daxter, in 2009. As it began coming up with ideas, it found it was "kind of getting away from what Jak and Daxter was. We were questioning, 'Are we doing this for marketing reasons? Naming something Jak and Daxter, when it's not really Jak and Daxter? Or are we really passionate about it?'"
That project never panned out because of Naughty Dog's desire to make a different type of game, and that seems to remain the case, according to Meyer. "Right now, what's exciting everyone at the studio is continuing to work on narrative-driven games with strong characters," he explained. "I think, at least for the time being, we haven't exhausted the possibilities there, but that could change with something as simple as hardware. That's what drove it before. I think we're on to something really good though creating character-driven stories so that's where our focus is going to be."
A game in the core Crash series was last seen in 2008, when the poorly received Crash: Mind Over Mutant was released. You have to go back a decade to 1998's Crash Bandicoot: Warped to find the last core Crash game made by Naughty Dog, which also released a surprisingly good kart racing game--Crash Team Racing--in 1999.
The Crash series--which is now owned by Activision, rather than Sony--has been quiet for years now; the latest title to bear the jorts-wearing Bandicoot's name was mobile game Crash Bandicoot Nitro Kart 2 in 2010. Despite this, Activision said last year that it "continue[s] to explore ways in which we could bring the beloved series back to life."
Naughty Dog is set to release the PlayStation 4 version of last year's acclaimed The Last of Us next week. It's also currently at work on Uncharted 4: A Thief's End for PS4 and some other "brand-new experience."
Would you like to see a Crash revival, or would it best to leave those fond memories--and jorts--in the past? Let us know in the comments.