The AAA announcement from the first Summer Game Fest developer showcase on June 22 was for Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time, a direct sequel to 1998s Crash Bandicoot: Warped. Since then, the game has popped up in August 2020's State of Play and Gamescom Opening Night Live.
The announcement and pre-release appearances of Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time have contained a lot of interesting new details about the first brand new Crash Bandicoot platformer in over a decade. This is what we know about its release date, platforms, and new gameplay features.
When is the Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time release date?
It was confirmed during the June 22 reveal that Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time would be released on October 2, 2020.
That's a week earlier than the October 9 release date that was leaked before the official announcement. The platformer will be released just before the launch of next-gen consoles, which are planned for Holiday 2020, and games like Star Wars: Squadrons and Dirt 5. Still, not many platformers seem to come out around that time, so Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time is a game that platformer fans should keep an eye on this fall.
Is there a new Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time trailer?
Yes, there is!
During Gamescom Opening Night Live, Geoff Keighley showed another new video for Crash 4: It's About Time. The trailer shows Crash, who is wearing a mask to cover his mouth, walking around the convention center in Cologne, Germany where Gamescom was supposed to take place. The video ends with the reveal of new Flashback Tape levels, but has not been released on its own yet.
Who is developing Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time?
While Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy was developed by Vicarious Visions, that studio is not making Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time as it is working on Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2. Instead, Toys For Bob will be handling It's About Time.
Toys For Bob has a storied history with games like Star Control and Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure, but most recently worked on Spyro Reignited Trilogy. This will be the studio's first Crash Bandicoot game, but considering how faithful the Spyro reboot was, it feels like Crash Bandicoot 4 is in safe hands.
Is Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time a PS4 exclusive?
While previous Crash Bandicoot games have been PlayStation exclusives, Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time will not be a PS4 exclusive at launch. When the game comes out this October, it will be on PS4 and Xbox One.
PC, PS5, Xbox Series, Nintendo Switch, and Google Stadia versions of Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time have not been confirmed, though it's possible that the game could be ported to many of those platforms in the future.
How does Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time play?
The gameplay of Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time appears very faithful to the series formula reestablished by the N. Sane Trilogy, though the levels get a bit more elaborate. It's the standard mix of 3D and 2D linear platforming that incorporates some new power-ups allowing Crash and Coco to run on walls, slow down time, and manipulate gravity.
Levels, in general, seem a bit more dynamic than the ones in N. Sane Trilogy with more exciting vehicle segments, chases, and level gimmicks. Even after you beat a level, there will be more to do. Each stage has an "N. Verted" version that changes things up. Some of the styles teased in a PlayStation Blog post include "splattering paint to see your path forward, or keeping up with an old-timey film reel that cranks up gameplay speed just as fast as it puts the picture on the screen."
During Gamescom Opening Night live, new Flashback tape levels were revealed. These are tough puzzle levels that players can unlock by reaching a video tape collectible in stages without dying. They're set in the 90s as Cortex is testing Crash and Coco, showing a never before seen part of the Crash Bandicoot timeline.
What characters can you play as in Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time?
According to the developers, you'll be able to switch between playing as Crash and Coco any time you want over the course of the game. That said, some levels will also feature other playable characters like Neo Cortex who have very different move sets. August's State of Play confirmed that Dingodile will be playable, and the Gamescom Opening Night Live trailer revealed TK.
Is Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time a remake of Wrath of Cortex?
Even though 2002 game Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex was labeled "Crash Bandicoot 4" in some regions, Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time is not a Wrath of Cortex remake. Both the reveal trailer and the official press release stress that this is a brand-new adventure with a fresh story and game mechanics for players to experience. Sorry Wrath of Cortex fans, Activision seemingly doesn't want to revisit any post-Naughty Dog Crash Bandicoot games right now.
What is the story of Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time?
The game's story directly follows up Crash Bandicoot: Warped. Crash and Coco have to stop Neo Cortex after he starts messing with the fabric of the multiverse. Their adventure takes them the various unique worlds and universes as they try to collect four Quantum Masks that will give them new power and help restore balance to the multiverse.
Overall, the story appears to be more lighthearted than some of Crash's previous outings and basically just gives Crash an excuse to visit exciting new worlds and levels. It does make every game from Wrath of Cortex onwards not canon though.
Crash Bandicoot 4: it's About Time will be released for PS4 and Xbox One on October 2, 2020.