Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy Review Roundup

Crash and burn or crash hit?

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Now Playing: Crash Bandicoot Warped Boss Battle - N. Sane Trilogy Gameplay

Crash Bandicoot's N. Sane Trilogy remaster collection delighted fans the world over when it was fully revealed at PSX last year. Nostalgic PlayStation owners had long called for Crash's return, and they'll finally get their wish now that the N. Sane Trilogy has launched.

The bundle includes three old-school Crash games: Crash Bandicoot, Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back, and Crash Bandicoot: Warped. They were all originally made by Naughty Dog, though Activision's Vicarious Visions has developed the PlayStation 4 collection.

Vicarious Visions used the original games' level geometry, but the gameplay is rebuilt from scratch. Some new features for the updated versions include a unified checkpoint and save system (including manual and auto-saving), as well as a unified menu system and Coco as a playable character for every level in the game.

We enjoyed what we played of the N. Sane Trilogy at E3 2017, but what do critics think of the final build? In GameSpot's Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy review, critic Peter Brown said Vicarious Visions has "succeeded in revitalizing Crash from an artistic perspective while preserving the charm that made him appealing when he first showed up," but he notes that "Crash's original adventures aren't as inventive or surprising as they were 20 years ago."

For a wider view of critical opinion, check out our review roundup below or take a look at GameSpot sister site Metacritic.

  • Game: Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy
  • Developer: Vicarious Visions
  • Platform: PlayStation 4
  • Release: June 30
  • Price: US $40 / £30 / AU $70

GameSpot -- 6/10

"The culprit behind Crash's dated feel is the passage of time. Vicarious Visions, for its part, succeeded in revitalizing Crash from an artistic perspective while preserving the charm that made him appealing when he first showed up, but years have passed since the original PlayStation was relevant, and we are well past the formative years of 3D gaming. It's easy to imagine how a dyed-in-the-wool Crash fan will fall in love all over again via the N. Sane Trilogy, but if you're experiencing Crash for the first time--or the first time in a while--it might pain you to realize that Crash's original adventures aren't as inventive or surprising as they were 20 years ago." -- Peter Brown [Full review]

IGN -- 8.5/10

"I didn't want the Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy to break what wasn't broken. Thankfully, Vicarious Visions clearly didn't want to either, and the studio's reverence for the original maddening yet rewarding challenges that have stood the test of time is clearly on display. On one hand, that leads to the frustrating limitations of the original Crash Bandicoot persisting 20 years later. But it also results in the incredible visual and aural overhaul and the gameplay tweaks to earlier entries, like time trials and crate counters, that Naughty Dog added later in the series. Those additions make the overall package so much more cohesive while never forgetting what made, and what still makes, so much of Naughty Dog's original trilogy a blast to play." -- Jonathon Dornbush [Full review]

Game Informer -- 8/10

"Not all games from yesteryear hold up well. The original Crash Bandicoot likely would drive people nuts if it returned in its original form. Vicarious Visions made it fun again, without altering its DNA--a feat that deserves recognition. Although Crash spins and jumps his way through most levels, variety was the key to this series' success. Naughty Dog always included a different wrinkle or evolution of a concept in each stage, and that continues here. For all three games, the feeling of repetition never sinks in, a factor that goes a long way in making this trilogy a blast to play. It's good to have Crash back in the limelight. I hope this isn't the last we see of him." -- Andrew Reiner [Full review]

GamesRadar -- 3.5/5

"There's just no escaping it, there might be brand new death animations to keep you entertained--oh look I've been swallowed by a lion again--but there's no avoiding that the controls just mean that Crash Bandicoot has become Dark Souls. It's a horrible shame. After being so excited for the remaster, there's just no avoiding that the N. Sane Trilogy and you aren't going to get along for a while. When it takes sheer willpower to survive the original's first island when you've played the game for years, you know something has gone wrong somewhere. Those coming in fresh to the franchise aren't going to know what's hit them. Sure, it's big, beautiful, and positively packed with charm, but it's time to prepare to die. I love the N.Sane Trilogy in its new roguelite form but some things will definitely frustrate those new to the franchise looking to find out what all the fuss is about." -- Louise Blain [Full review]

Trusted Reviews -- 3/5

"It's no big surprise to say that the N. Sane trilogy is another pleasant form of fan service from Sony, which does seem keen on this kind of thing when you remember it’s doing the same with Final Fantasy XII and Shenmue III. And the intended audience will love it. If you don't fall into this group, though, I don't think you should take the plunge now. Probably best to find something that was developed a bit more recently." -- Simon Miller [Full review]

TheSixthAxis -- 9/10

"As far as remakes go, you can't get any better than this. Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy is exactly how fans envisioned it--an unadulterated celebration of a PlayStation pioneer. With such a weight on their shoulders, Vicarious Visions have pulled it off with such diligence, infused with a streak of their own creativity. Then there's Naughty Dog original efforts, of course. Even those only acquainted with Uncharted and The Last of Us can appreciate how the studio first made its name, and the journey from Crash Bandicoot to Warped is one of continued innovation. Some two decades later, it's great to see that some things never change." -- Jim Hargreaves [Full review]

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Avatar image for urbanman2004
urbanman2004

Idc what the reviews say, that's how dafuq a remaster is supposed to be made

Avatar image for jach
Jach

"...it might pain you to realize that Crash's original adventures aren't as inventive or surprising as they were 20 years ago."
I expect a low score for every Mario game then. It's a very bad reason against it, it's not promising to be new or inventive, but considering the closest you can get to this kind of gameplay is through Skylanders, it might feel fresh for a whole new generation than those of us growing up with it.
It doesn't even feel like it was restricted by the tech of the time, other than the visuals which is now updated to modern standards. All in all, being inventive and surprising should give any product bonus points, but it shouldn't lose for not doing it, as it isn't going backwards either and the market isn't flooded with games like this either.

Avatar image for stelios
Stelios

The game is selling well, I believe that those who know what to expect from it, will come out very satisfied. If you go in blindly, you might set yourself up for disappointment. It's a very niche game and absolutely a kind of love it or hate it situation. That's why some reviews vary greatly from others. And the funny thing is that in the end, both sides are right.

Don't go in if you don't know what's it about, except if you are persistent and up for a mild to difficult challenge. If so, you might discover a gem.

Avatar image for jach
Jach

@stelios: I kind of agree. It wasn't niche back then, but nowadays only an indie dev would consider making anything like it, the difficulty alone is enough, even back then the game wasn't easy, not even in the beginning.

Avatar image for deviltaz35
DEVILTAZ35

I was going to get this but Snake Pass was only $16 on the Switch over the weekend.(Just wanted something i could play on the handheld) I'll pick this up at sometime though. It looks like they did a great job on it.

Avatar image for mkeezay22
mkeezay22

I honestly don't know how anyone could give the Crash Trilogy such a low score, even the originals are still fun enough to play, especially with an emulator and some AA, and filtering to make it silky smooth.

Playing at 16:9 with all new visuals and better controls can only be better, a great game actually worthy of a remaster.

Avatar image for jach
Jach

@mkeezay22: It's difficult compared to newer games, so it isn't really open to everyone.

Avatar image for xenomorphalien
XenomorphAlien

Gamespot's reviews suck. But that's not really a surprise anymore.

Avatar image for Oldgun
Oldgun

I bought the game and I'm very happy.

Avatar image for petey_olivarez
petey_olivarez

As usual GameSpot with a 6/10 do not have a clue what they are talking about.

Avatar image for ronaldmcreagan
ronaldmcreagan

@petey_olivarez: I have to agree with you there, 6/10 is way too high.

Avatar image for stelios
Stelios

@ronaldmcreagan: What score would you give and for what reasons?

Avatar image for petey_olivarez
petey_olivarez

@ronaldmcreagan: Was it too difficult for you too?

Avatar image for skrilla99
skrilla99

Can't wait to pick this up for $10 next year like R&C and GOW3 Remaster.

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

@skrilla99: you get r&c now for $10 on psn. gow3 remaster is only $4 on psn!

Avatar image for FBohler
FBohler

GamePSot being harsh on Playstation exclusives, whats happening?

Avatar image for Jacanuk
Jacanuk

Poor Gamespot , turning into Polygon and the odd man out.

Avatar image for cyberpunk_2077
cyberpunk_2077

It's all about nostalgia here and nothing more.

Avatar image for Jacanuk
Jacanuk

@cyberpunk_2077: And?

Do not see a problem there.

Avatar image for cyberpunk_2077
cyberpunk_2077

@Jacanuk: lol, my bad I should have elaborated.

I loved the classics and look forward to playing this collection.

Avatar image for Jacanuk
Jacanuk

@cyberpunk_2077: Yup same here. Crash is a fun game just to relax with.

Avatar image for robbiejones
robbiejones

"i was horrible at the game, and thought it was very difficult" 6/10- gamespot

Avatar image for Jaxith
Jaxith

@robbiejones: Why is someone having a different opinion from you so scary? I don't understand that mentality.

Avatar image for robbiejones
robbiejones

$70 AU? nah if u go to eb rip off games then yes.

Avatar image for deviltaz35
DEVILTAZ35

@robbiejones: $49 in Big W , $59 average from what i have seen. If you go to Big W ask them to take one out of storage though as they have a habit of opening the games and storing them in a drawer which means they can get scratched easily.

Avatar image for expredator
expredator

Ganespot sucks. They don't know nothing about reviewing games.

Avatar image for mickpunx
Mickpunx

@expredator: "they don't know nothing"? So they know something? Interesting statement you made there.

Avatar image for expredator
expredator

@mickpunx: and yours was very deep. Got me really thinking.

Avatar image for gamerbum
GamerBum

These games were rubbish then and there rubbish now. The majority of gaming media outlets are a joke at this point. Anything associated with sony or Nintendo for that matter get the benefit of the doubt (although gamespots score this time is correct) and Xbox gets marked down. It's so obvious it's a disgrace.🎮✌️

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

@gamerbum: yea, it's been a while since microsoft released an xbox game deserving of high praise lol... no wonder xbox is so unpopular these days lol

Avatar image for joshrmeyer
JoshRMeyer

@gamerbum: 35 critics have it at an average of 8/10. But because it's a Sony game, and this is Sonyspot, it must really be a 4/10(because Sony's throws tons of extra money they have laying around to gamespot for an extra point or two... And apparently pay off almost every critic). Your conspiracy theories make no sense when you compare gamespots score to anyone else's as an average.

Avatar image for doctor_mg
Doctor_MG

@joshrmeyer:

People say this about any website when the score doesn't match their perspective. I remember someone saying IGN had an Xbox bias because some Sony games were scored 0.2 points down from the metacritic average....0.2 points...that is damn close to the average. Certainly within one standard deviation. Or when everyone said that there was a Nintendo bias when most major review sites scored Zelda similar or the same.

That type of argument is always ridiculous lol. Most review sites aren't NEARLY that petty.

Avatar image for joshrmeyer
JoshRMeyer

@doctor_mg: Yup, this site is usually witihin a point of metacritic. What's ironic is both this website and metacritic are owned by CBS lol

Avatar image for expredator
expredator

@gamerbum: GTFO xbone fanboy

Avatar image for gamerbum
GamerBum

@expredator:

Nice comment pony.🎮✌️

Avatar image for joshrmeyer
JoshRMeyer

@gamerbum: An ass calling someone a pony... Interesting... Your user name should be gamerass.

Avatar image for gamerguy7
gamerguy7

I don't go by gamespot reviews, and this is one of the reasons why. They give crap reviews.

Avatar image for andyvecc011
AndyVecc011

9/10 everywere

Avatar image for Xristophoros
Xristophoros

gamespot is such an outlier on this one. overall, it has been a very well received game indeed.

Avatar image for gamerbum
GamerBum

@Xristophoros:

That's because most gaming outlets have there sony blinkers on including Gamespot apart from this particular review which they happened to get spot on.🎮✌️

Avatar image for joshrmeyer
JoshRMeyer

@gamerbum: It's a good thing they have their Sony blinkers on... So we know which way they're turning.

Avatar image for jellyman68
jellyman68

@joshrmeyer: If they were Microsoft blinkers they'd turn blue for no apparent reason and stop working.