i LOVED Crash Bandicoot. i absolutely fucking loved that hyperactive marsupial, with every fibre of my being.
i played a lot of games before i played the original Crash game, and i liked them; i played a LOT of the Quest games (be it Space, or King’s) and had a blast, i liked Super Mario Brothers, i enjoyed playing Super Metroid, i will never forget Marathon 2, and Jazz Jackrabbit will always have a place in my game-heart, but i can state unequivocally that i god damn adored Crash Bandicoot.
The game had the wacky humour of an early Looney Tunes cartoon, the colour and style of some kind of terminal sugar-high inducing cereal box art, and hyper-kinetic playing mechanics that emphasised being in control of a technicolour, ADHD wrecking ball. I just got Crash, you know, i understood him. I can’t possibly tell you how many times i’ve seen a crate and thought “is today the day i successfully spin through that wooden bastard”. Unfortunately, the day i successfully spin through that wooden bastard is yet to come.
I even played Crash of the Titans on PSP AND XBox 360, that’s how deep my love for Crash Bandicoot goes.
The original Crash Bandicoot came out in 1996. By my reckoning it is currently the year of our Lord, 2016. That is a passing of twenty (20) human years*.
20 years and still here we all sit, waiting for our most beloved bandicoot to be given the HD, 21st century redesign treatment. So, if Sony, or Activision, or Naughty Dog (or whom ever own Crash nowadays) aren’t going to get on that action, then i sure as hell will.
The eponymous hero of the series, Crash was supposed to be the leader of Cortex’s mutant army. After being zapped with the Evolv-O-Ray it became clear he wasn’t really going to work as a world conquering super henchman, so he was promptly discarded.
Another creation of Dr. Cortex, after Crash was rejected, Tawna was still imprisoned prompting Crash to start his rescue effort, in an aid to impress her and win her heart.
Tawna has a tumultuous history as a Crash character. She wasn’t really seen after the first game apart from cameos in framed photos, or being alluded to work in weird burlesque clubs. She was a playable character in a game made for Nintendo DS (which is a low point for any character), but she was the reason Crash was doing what he was doing in the original game, so it seems only right to bring her back.
The highly intelligent and spirited younger sister of Crash Bandicoot. She often aids her big brother by building gadgets ideal for the situation or even tagging along with him in his journeys.
An ancient, benevolent witch doctor whose spirit now resides in a wooden mask, carved from enchanted wood taken from the Wumpa trees. As the guardian of the Wumpa Archipelago, Aku Aku joins Crash in order to free the islands from Cortex’s hold. Aku Aku has had devotees throughout the ages who have carved voodoo idols in his image, collecting them will provide Crash with protection and power-ups on the course of his journey.
Looking for more muscle to add to his army Cortex made a deal with a Russian black market Arms Dealer; in return for enough money and high tech weaponry to either buy his way into power or level the entire country Cortex was given a family of silverback gorillas, stolen from a Russian zoo.
Originally the first boss in the first game was Papu Papu, a tribal leader native to the islands, but since i wanted to keep an island natives vs. Cortex (and his hench-mutants) theme, i decided to replace Papu Papu with this guy, a massive gorilla. While i am aware that gorillas are not technically native to the Australasian region, once i did a quick sketch of him – and decided he would be a gorilla who is an actual guerrilla – the decision was out of my hands. You don’t walk away from an opportunity like that when it falls in your lap.
Ripper Roo is an insane mutated kangaroo, he was Dr. Cortex’s first failed test subject of the Evolv-O-Ray, with which Ripper was zapped at least twice, causing him to go insane.
An Aquarius who likes long walks on the beach, collects antique teaspoons, and is a complete psychopath. His proudest moment is either the time he ripped down 200 trees (in one afternoon), or the time he finished The Da Vinci Code (that took him three months).
The Head of Cortex’s personal security force. A no nonsense potoroo with a love of violence and a good amount of skill with his Thompson M1921 submachine gun, which he has affectionately named “Miss Killsgood”.
I feel that it should be said that i am from Australia, and i had never heard of a potoroo before playing Crash Bandicoot…
Dr. Neo Cortex.
Dr. Neo Cortex
Short tempered, reckless and manipulative. Creator of the Evolv-O-Ray, CEO of the Cortex Corporation, and textbook mad scientist. Cortex has cornered the market in disintegrating weaponry, deforestation equipment and genetically modified Australasian wildlife.
The Wumpa Archipelago, a cluster of islands off the south east coast of Australia, owned (and fully exploited) by Dr. Neo Cortex. Cortex has turned the islands into a fortified proving grounds for his experiments, a massive factory-lab where he conducts his research and creates abominations, and a humble shipping port, from which he exports containers filled with Wumpa Fruit (found only on the islands), exotic plant and animal specimens and various technologies of his own design.
There are very few parts of the island chain that are free from his influence, but those untouched by Cortex remain lush and pristine, and provide refuge for both the mad scientist’s rejected experiments as well as the few animals left he hasn’t sewn together or genetically fiddled with.
i see the game playing a lot like a Just Cause or Far Cry style. All three islands would be openly explorable from the outset, and would be divided into territories of three different factions –
The Natives/ Mutant Revolutionaries: The native inhabitants of the islands and the outcast mutated animals who just want to live in peace with the other creatures.
The Rejected: Mutants who were deemed defective or escaped from the labs and just want to wreak havoc on the islands, destroying everything they can.
Cortex’s Army: The mutants, and hired mercenaries loyal to Cortex, paid or otherwise incentivised to eliminate anyone who isn’t a loyal company man (or animal).
The Wumpa Archipelago consists of three islands;
South Island – Home of the Temple of the Ancients and the sacred Wumpa Grove, a patchwork of half constructed buildings, experimental technologies, and impenetrable jungle. The fact that even Cortex’s specially engineered de-forestation machines can’t penetrate the older, thicker parts of the jungle means that South Island still has pockets of dense, lush forest free of Cortex’s influence. for now…
East Island – The East Island has been cleared of all but the toughest and oldest trees, making way for the Cortex Exports operations office, the Cortex Port, and the Proving Grounds; where Cortex’s experiments battle each other to prove their worth to their master.
Cortex Island (formerly North Island) – The site of Cortex Co. head office, the Cortex Manufacturing Factory-Lab, and testing ground for Cortex Mining Industries’ prize investment: the Magma-Matic – a device which (in theory) harvests magma from the active volcano to be pumped offshore, (in theory) creating more islands to be terraformed by Cortex Co.
Map of the Wumpa Islands
*This is equal to either 472, or 19.825 Bandicoot years, math is not an exact science…
My last post was over 7 months ago, and i can honestly say i have done very little in the way of personal work in the time betwixt then and now.
Then, like a great, chaffed maw – cracked and blistering from exposure to the elements, the muscles weak from holding back the contents within; at times coalescing and putrid, gaseous in form, then viscous liquid, then suddenly a solid lump, crusted over covered with crystalline outcroppings, but always turbulently swirling within – my brain let slip some of it’s vile contents, and here, now, ever so timidly, i present – some things i have done.
You could be viewing this on your wall, if only you’d go to Redbubble
Who doesn’t love a calavera design? No one, that’s who. I know i would happily sit and draw these things all day if i had time. I like to imagine myself as an old man, retired, sitting at a table furiously scribbling these skulls over any piece of paper my gnarled, ink stained hands could grab, feverishly and in a trance like state i would sketch skull after skull, before the nurses are called and forced to sedate me, again. Oh how i would struggle at first, my fists clenching pages torn from books, napkins, any papers i could find. The orderlies would know from experience to wrestle the pen from my hand – some careless doctor or visitor would be reprimanded later for allowing me to borrow it – i would curse them in a language that i think sounds Spanish, but is clearly made up and call upon great serpent gods to strike down my foes, but the sedatives would have already taken hold at this point, and i would slump down to the floor, breathing short ragged breaths as the staff are forced to drag me back to my room. Before the cold darkness of unconsciousness takes me i would reach up and slip a small sketch of a calavera into a nurse’s pocket for him to find later; scrawled around the design in tight, hurried text is a random collection of symbols and letters that if he decides to research will break his mind and enslave his will. That was how it happened to me…
You could wear this on you if you go to Redbubble
Buy this printed on stuff at Redbubble
Snake oil is absolutely one of my favourite products (or even concepts) ever sold by people. Sure, it’s a horrible, fraudulent way to make money from the suffering, discomfort and naiveté of other human beings, but all in all… it just has that grifter’s charm that makes it just too hard to hate for any amount of time.
A podcast about video games, by two guys from Australia.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...
little pictures I like to draw
Jamie Freestone on science communication &c. Views might be my own, we can't say (see intentional fallacy).