Crash is Back! Are Platformers too?

We’ve seen a recent trend over the past couple of years – the remaster, the remake. They sound the same but as any developer will tell you, they’re not. Nevertheless what once was old is new again – nostalgia is back and it feels great.

As gamers, we love it – I know I certainly do. Coming back to the games and icons that we remember growing up is very satisfying. They remind us of the good times and why we found our love for gaming in the first place – wasting a whole weekend trying to beat that 3rd boss on Sonic & Knuckles or that long car journey that went by so quickly only because your head was stuffed into the GTA Vice City guide… Ahh, memories.  

Recently, a certain orange marsupial smashed his way into our lives once more – Crash is back and in beautiful “Fur-K”.

*shudders – Normally, I keep away from generic PR speak. But this time, it deserves it.

The Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy has been a huge hit. After just 2 days on sale, it took the No.1 spot for June in the UK and sold faster than PlayStation’s newest franchise, Horizon Zero Dawn. Congrats Vicarious Visions and Activision 👏👏👏

In similar fashion, last year we saw a reimagining-remake of the first Ratchet & Clank – which, again sold very well and received a solid 85 on Metacritic – Yooka-Laylee, Psychonauts 2, and Knack all gaining an audience. This year at E3, Microsoft even announced a brand new platformer, Lucky’s Tale.

It looks like the humble platformer is making a comeback. Is this OK or should this be left in its time-capsule?

For me, I think they’re selling in part because of nostalgia and those cherished memories that they bring back. We’ve seen recently, that these games are a lot harder than we once thought, check out @DingDongVG’s Tweet below;

“Crash’s jump arc is sped up in the N. Sane Trilogy, causing him to land just slightly quicker,” the video mentions.

This isn’t a bad thing, we’re just going to have to learn to play the games again – like all over again 🙄

While we may think we remember these games like the back of our hands, they have improved dramatically since then. That easy Platinum Trophy now seems just that little bit further away.

However, while we see many people dropping off and realising it’s not quite the game for them anymore, it’s also generating a buzz about what other old platformers could make a return. A certain purple dragon perhaps? It’s certainly a discussion I’m sure is already underway.

Recently, it was discovered that inputting an old cheat code on the title screen of Crash Bandicoot Warped – which, originally opened a demo to Spyro The Dragon – may hint at a comeback 🤔 Personally, I think the internet is just grasping at straws on this one but it’s a nice little throwback.

So, what does this actually mean for the once seemed quiet genre?

It definitely looks like it’s making a comeback. Gamers and non-gamers alike appear to love the nostalgic hit, the pallet of bright colours and puzzles – they’re not too daunting and appeal to a massive audience. But, don’t be fooled. These games are not meant to be easy and as they’re now being made for a much more powerful and seemingly unrestricted system (unlike the PS1 genre) they’re also going to be challenging.

Despite hearing GAME OVER for the 10,000th time, I’m actually having a lot of fun 🙌

– James


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