|Playstation > Whats New > PlayStation Reviews > Staff Review|
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|Game Type:||Platform||Memory Card|
|Review Date:||December 1998||Dual Shock/Analog|
Setting the Scene
Setting off for his third adventure on the Playstation that lovable old marsupial, Crash Bandicoot is out to show that he hasn't lost a step. In fact, I do believe that he has a few new steps to show off. When we last saw Crash he had left the evil Dr. Neo Cortex totally pissed, as his dreams for world domination were once again shattered. Not one that's allowed to rest on his totally kicked-in butt, the doc is summoned by his sinister boss, Uka Uka (Aku Aku's evil twin mask). Uka Uka wants Neo to put an end to Crash once and for all and isn't about to take "no" for an answer. So off the crazy Cortex goes in an effort to rid the world of our favorite mascot. Crash isn't one to take such a challenge lightly though, so he enlists to help of his little sister Coco to help him battle the evil Dr. and to try and collect the worlds valuable Gems and Crystals before Cortex can. Can Crash defeat the dishonorable Dr. once and for all? Will Coco be able to survive the ordeal? Will Aku Aku get a chance to meet his lost brother Uka Uka and discuss old times? Do you care? Well, you should! So sit back, relax and get ready to read about what could possibly be Naughty Dog's Swan song for the Playstation's Crash series...Crash Bandicoot: WARPED.
WARPED is a 2D ½ platform adventure game that take Crash through a multitude of era's via time travel.
The graphics in WARPED are about as crisp and tasty as any you are likely to see on the Playstation. It seems that each time a Crash game comes out, the developers find some way to squeeze a little bit more juice from the PSX and delight their fans with the best graphics in a game series. This game is no exception, as the graphics are truly eye-popping. Playing through WARPED is like the equivalent of sitting in front of your TV and watching and extremely well made cartoon. The amount of animation and color depth is startling. Movement of Crash and the rest of the characters in the game are exceptionally fluid. There is rarely a moment in the game where you do not feel totally immersed in its realm. There is constantly something going on in the backgrounds as well as your immediate gameplaying foreground. Right from the first Crash game I have always admired the way the developers were able to bring forth an environment that looked so alive and inviting and this game tops them all. Not only can you now wade through that beautifully rendered water, but you can actually scuba dive through it as well!
Sounds and Effects
A much more full and rich musical score can be found in WARPED when compared to its two predecessors. There are still those quirky, whimsical melodies that flow smoothly throughout the game, but now feature a more complex and engaging score. The music fits the mood of the game perfectly...you couldn't ask for anything more. Those good old familiar sound effects are back and better than ever as well. All of the robust noises that you have come to know and love you still in there with a bevy of new, equally additive sound effects. The overall combination of music and sounds work in perfect harmony throughout the game and bring the wacky world of Crash to life like never before.
Well it seems as if Naughty Dog has indeed scored a trifecta with WARPED, with this title holding the number one spot in the series for overall gameplay control. The Crash series has always excelled in this area but now I believe it is about as tweaked as its gonna get. The sly bandicoot now has superb analog control and a host of new moves to compliment his jumps and twists. The shift to time travel was a good one, which now has Crash and his playable sister Coco visiting the four corners of the earth in various timeframes. This idea opens things up a bit as players can now scuba dive underwater in Atlantis, visit Medieval times, become a '50's biker and battle Arabian Knights. Hell, there is even a Jurassic Era and a futuristic level that shows a good deal of vision on the part of the designers. The level layouts are nicely implemented with 5 locations to visit per site. A new site is opened up each time you complete the 5 locations of the current site. The locations at each site can be visited in any order, enabling players to decide which ones they would like to complete first, second, third, etc. The game plays out very similar to the previous two in the series where you must collect a crystal on each level in order to finish the game. Of course, just collecting crystals though won't get you to all of those wonderful bonus and secret levels that are hidden throughout the game. Nope, to get a 100% perfectly completed game you must collect addition items that can only be obtained by those that are really willing to work at it. In addition to collecting the essential Crystals on each level you are also given opportunity to collect Gems and Relics. There are two types of Gems - the clear ones that you receive as your reward for smashing all of the boxes in a level or for completing a secret area. There are a total of 42 clear Gems. The other type of Gem is the colored one. These can only be found in special levels and once collected, will transport you to hidden areas. There are 5 of these colored beauties. The other item to try for is the Relic. To get these, you must re-enter a level after you have collected a crystal. You will then be placed in a time trial mode. If you just barely beat the time set forth, you will receive a Sapphire relic. If you totally kick-ass in that level you will receive the golden relic. Collect your first five relics and you will be treated to a Secret Warp room and a secret level. Every five relics collected after that will continue to open a secret level for you to play through! There are a total of 30 relics and you need to collect them all if you intend to get a 100% game completion mark. The boss levels are as goofy and creative as ever and still force players to learn each of the boss's unique moves to be victorious. Also, once you defeat a boss you will receive a new power move that you keep for the remainder of the game. Some of these moves are hilarious and worth their weight in gold. So to wrap things up here, this is Crash at it's best. The depth and pure enjoyment of gameplay found in WARPED is really second to none. The control is the best in the series and the locations are a joy to behold. This is quite easily the best game in the Crash series and a must have for all of you gameplayers out there.
Value for Money
The Crash games have always had good reply value with their secret level, bonus levels and all the stuff you need to collect. WARPED is certainly no different and may actually have the best overall value of the series. The levels ramp up in difficulty at a nice steady pace and certainly keep you glued to the controller in an effort to finish to the game. The trick of course is to get a 100% totally complete game and that my friends is going to take a bit of time and effort. The game is also a graphical showcase and one that you will want to pull off of your shelf over and over again to show your friends.
easily the best game of the series, WARPED takes you on a journey
through time and space in an effort to collect gems and crystals and to
put a stop to the nasty Dr. Neo Cortex.
The graphics are probably at the apex for Playstation games and the sound effects are simply brilliant.
WARPED is a wonderfully presented game that truly goes beyond anything you are likely to find in this genre for any system. The sheer brilliance in the level designs and gameplay are sure to keep you coming back for more.