Crash Twinsanity (クラッシュ・バンディクー5 え〜っ クラッシュとコルテックスの野望?!? Crash Bandicoot 5: The Ambition of Crash and Cortex?!? in Japanese) is a video game in the Crash Bandicoot series. It was released in North America on 28 September 2004 for the Playstation 2 and Xbox, and is the fifth game that is not a spin-off. It was planned to be released on the Gamecube, but was cancelled on said console. The story is set three years after the events of Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex, where Doctor Neo Cortex and Uka Uka were left stranded in the Antarctic sea. In this game, N. Sanity Island comes under threat by a sinister duo called The Evil Twins, forcing Crash Bandicoot to reluctantly team up with his arch nemesis and creator, Doctor Neo Cortex, who the twins seem to hold malice against, but why? Where did they come from? Can the bandicoot and mad scientist solve the Evil Twins true identity and save their world from destruction before they destroy each other? There are four playable characters: Crash Bandicoot, Doctor Neo Cortex (sometimes both at the same time), Cortex's niece, Nina Cortex and Mecha-Bandicoot during the final boss battle.
Part 1 - N. Sanity Island
Three years have passed since the events of Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex, and a frozen Doctor Neo Cortex and Uka Uka wash up on N. Sanity Beach. As Coco innocently chases a butterfly, Cortex knocks her out with his ray gun, and disguises as her to lure an unaware Crash through Jungle Bungle. Eventually, the path stops, and "Coco" reveals herself. Cortex reveals that he has organized a gathering, "like a birthday party, except...the exact opposite", with Crash's past enemies as party guests, consisting of Dingodile, Tiny Tiger, Pinstripe Potoroo, Crunch Bandicoot (who mistakenly thought that the event was an actual birthday party), Nitros Oxide, Ripper Roo, Koala Kong, and Polar (who is holding a baseball bat as revenge for all the times he was ridden on by Crash in Crash Bandicoot 2). Cortex quickly starts "handing out the presents" by throwing bombs and shooting at him. Crash beats him once again, and orders Doctor N. Gin to roll out his newest creation: Mecha-Bandicoot, a giant, robotic Crash lookalike. Ultimately, Crash beats the robot up, and the resulting explosion knocks Crash and Cortex into a cave, while Dingodile and Ripper Roo discuss lunch. Infuriated at losing to Crash again, Cortex charges at Crash, knocking the duo down a hole, leading to a cavern. As the brawl makes its way through the underground mine, Cortex eventually stumbles across a Power Crystal. Shortly after claiming it, a giant drill rises from the ground, separating Cortex and the Crystal from Crash. The drill opens, and a horde of ant-like enemies flood out, taking Crates into the drill and, occasionally, attacking Crash. Crash stops the drill and meets up with Cortex, commanding Crash to back away from his treasure, or he'll go "crystal crazy". Not listening, Crash and Cortex both grab the Crystal and fight for it, helping them complete the rest of the level. Eventually, the duo are chased by the aforementioned drill to the surface.
Once outside, two parrots who call themselves the Evil Twins appear and proclaim that they are going to destroy the island. Cortex makes fun of them initially, but to show how serious they are, they pull Cortex's brain out of his head, causing him to flee in terror, still holding his brain.
Crash eventually finds Cortex again, who pleads for his help. He states how he envies the simple life of the tribesfolk, the noble boar and the humble bumblebee, only to be swarmed by bees. Cortex, oblivious to any danger, goes on a mad dash through the woods because of the attacking bees. A beehive falls on Cortex's head during the run, and later a bear starts chasing him. Crash is able to help him avoid various traps along the way, until Cortex is captured by Papu Papu. Crash makes his way upriver, hiding from the tribesmen. Crash eventually infiltrates Papu Papu's village and rescues Cortex, who is tied to a totem pole with a Power Crystal on the top. Crash grabs the Power Crystal, thus destroying the totem, making it fall into a river along with Cortex. Angry at Crash for the chaos he caused, Papu Papu orders his tribesmen to kill Crash. After escaping from the tribesmen and reuniting with Cortex, Crash meets with a local farmer emu named Farmer Ernest. Farmer Ernest offers Crash a Power Crystal if Crash can clear all the worms out of his nearby Wumpa orchard. Cortex shoots Farmer Ernest in response, and takes the Power Crystal anyway. Unable to get past his land, they are forced to get rid of the worms anyway, so they can use the Wumpa trees to reach the top of N. Sanity Mountain.
After passing through the farm, Crash and Cortex encounter the Evil Twins again. Revealing they are from the 10th Dimension, they bring a totem god, known as Tikimon, to life to destroy Crash and Cortex. The duo manage to defeat it as the Evil Twins leave. The information the twins reveal give Cortex an idea, and he announces their next destination to be Cortex's Iceberg Lab.
Part 2 - Iceberg Lab
Crash and Cortex eventually arrive at their destination. The key to the lab, however, doesn't work much to Cortex's frustration, so the two are forced to go the long way round - up the iceberg it is situated on. On the way, Cortex comes across a gang of penguins demanding pay, stating that their check bounced since the past few years had been slow, and the Wrath of Cortex hadn't gone as well as they had hoped. Cortex then pretends to bribe them with fish before shooting one, prompting the rest to fly off, leaving behind a power crystal. Later on, the two stumble across Uka Uka, who is frozen in a sheet of ice. Surprised to see such an unlikely alliance, he transforms into a giant ice creature and tries to squish the pair of them, only to be roasted by Crash and Cortex. Uka Uka tries to leave after the fight, only to be stopped by Aku Aku, who informs him of the Evil Twins' plans, before proposing to team up themselves. Uka Uka, who is insistent that destroying the world is his job, accepts. Together again, the Aku Uka brothers travel to the 10th dimension to confront the Evil Twins themselves.
Crash and Cortex arrive inside the lab at long last, but are interrupted by the Evil Twins who have defeated Aku Aku and Uka Uka. They reveal that they knew Cortex from long ago, claiming that he ruined their lives (although Cortex has no knowledge of this) and accidentally reveal that they also have a large supply of treasure. They then send their army of Ant Drones to destroy Crash and Cortex, but they are swiftly beaten, forcing the Evil Twins to retreat. When Aku Aku and Uka Uka recover, they ask Cortex who the twins are but he does not know. Aku Aku considers handing Cortex over to the Evil Twins, but Cortex, reluctantly, forms a truce with his nemesis.
Cortex then shows Crash the Psychetron, a teleportation device which they can use to travel to the 10th dimension and defeat the Evil Twins. To get there, they require six power crystals, currently they have four. Cortex proposes that N. Gin might have one in his battleship but it is about to set sail. While Cortex is in deep thought about getting down fast, Crash boots Cortex off the balcony, using him as a makeshift sledge to get down the iceberg through a long downhill slope. On the way they find a power crystal. They eventually land on Dingodile's cabin, wrecking it, but Cortex, feeling embarrassed, is unwilling to go any further and states that no amount of treasure could ever compensate. Dingodile hears about the Evil Twins' treasure and secretly follows Crash. Crash ventures into the battleship and eventually finds another power crystal, and battles N. Gin in his airborne crow's nest in the process. N. Gin uses a missile launcher and some TNT crates to fight Crash but is tricked into destroying the platform he and Crash are standing on. Crash lands in a hallway filled with dangers, when the ship's chef, Rusty Walrus, comes in claiming Crash as fresh meat. Rusty chases after Crash until they reach the exit, where the two become separated. Crash ends up in an area full of TNT Crates, one of which N. Gin lands on, causing a massive explosion that sends the two flying.
Crash lands on a nearby iceberg where Doctor Nefarious Tropy and Doctor Nitrus Brio are watching the ship sink. Tropy and Brio have heard about the treasure, and order Crash to tell them more about it. As expected, Crash remains silent. Tropy then orders Brio to drink a potion that turns him into a giant and somewhat frog-like mutant. Both N. Tropy and N. Brio battle Crash for the information on the treasure but Crash defeats Tropy. Brio attacks one last time but ends up sending Crash flying back to Cortex's Lab by flipping the iceberg he's standing on. Crash returns to the Psychetron and delivers the crystals to Cortex; now they have enough to progress. At that moment, Coco appears. Believing that Cortex has kidnapped Crash, she kicks him, causing the Psychetron to malfunction, knocking her out for the second time, thus destroying the power crystals they just found. The Psychetron will have to be repaired if they want to use it, and only one person can fix it: Cortex's niece, Nina. Using his airship, they set course for Madame Amberly's Academy of Evil.
Part 3 - The Academy of Evil
Crash and Cortex use Cortex's airship to travel to the academy. While traveling, the Evil Twins appear and send a horde of Ant Drones to attack Cortex. Cortex manages to fend them off with his ray gun. Crash and Cortex reach Madame Amberly's Academy of Evil. There, they venture through the secret underground sewage system hidden under a fountain in the courtyard. On the way, Cortex gets stuck in a barrel, so Crash has to roll him around for almost the whole level. After finding a new power crystal, they meet Dingodile who tells them he's heard of the treasure and wants a cut. Dingodile uses his flamethrower on the pipe Cortex is standing on which sends him flying out of the sewer. Crash and Dingodile fight, but Crash wins and goes back up to the Academy.
After the encounter with Dingodile, Crash ventures through the Academy of Evil. He soon comes across a library that is filling up with acid; Crash has to run to the top floor of the library to escape the acid. Crash finds another power crystal along the way. Cortex appears and decides to take it from there, sending Crash back to guard the airship and make sure its mooring ropes are secure. Cortex makes his way through the halls and is chased by bugs several times but he manages to escape them. After recovering another power crystal, he reaches Nina's bedroom. Cortex asks Nina to show him what she's learned from school. Nina obliges by going through the rooftops. Soon, they see the airship floating away, due to the fact that Crash tied it to a bus.
After Nina finds another power crystal, the airship starts following her, and the swinging bus starts destroying some parts of the rooftops. Nina manages to escape it before it catches up with her. She then meets up with Cortex in the halls, who tells her to get back to the airship. Cortex carries on, before he meets up with the headmistress, Madame Amberly. The two fight, but despite Amberly's best efforts, Cortex wins. After the fight, he meets up with Crash and they all reach the airship. With enough crystals again, they decide to go back to the Iceberg Lab.
On the airship, Cortex finally remembers his past with the Evil Twins. It is revealed that while he was just a child and a student of the Academy of Evil, his first experiment involved an early Evolvo-Ray and Neo's twin parrots named Victor and Moritz. At the end of the experiment, Victor and Moritz are nowhere to be found (in reality, Neo sent them to the 10th dimension). After that experiment, he never saw them ever again and was heartbroken for the loss of his two pet parrots.
Part 4 - Twinsanity Island
Back at the Iceberg Lab, Nina and Cortex fix the machine and venture to a new dimension. In the Tenth Dimension, Cortex is seen hugging what he thinks is Crash, but is actually none other than Evil Crash. The vicious animal then kidnaps Nina. Cortex and Crash begin to chase after them; Crash again makes use of Cortex and rides him down the volcano-like a sledge to chase after Evil Crash.
They soon end up on Twinsanity Island, a twisted version of N. Sanity Island. Crash sees Cortex, a tied up Nina, and Evil Crash at a warped version of his own house. Cortex demands that Evil Crash lets Nina go and takes him instead, which ends with Evil Crash chasing him. Crash follows and the three take part in another mad dash through Twinsanity Island. At the end, Cortex, Nina and Crash find the Evil Twins' hideout. In the treasure chamber, deep in their domain, they find N. Tropy, N. Brio, and N. Gin, who claim they all found the treasure first. But it belongs to none other than Spyro the Dragon, who proceeds to burn the doctors. Our three heroes reach Victor and Moritz and after a brief exchange of taunts, Cortex tricks them into going into their cage, much like he did when he was a child. Victor and Moritz then transform the cage into an epic mech and a fight begins.
Crash runs off at the start of the fight, leaving only Nina and a trembling Cortex. Nina uses her acrobatic skills to destroy the mech's power supply for the first part of the fight. Once Nina tires out, Cortex uses his ray gun to blast the mech's guns off. After Cortex has finished his part of the fight, Crash enters, piloting Mecha Bandicoot. After Crash barrages the mech with missiles, Victor and Moritz fly away, only to stumble into Evil Crash's house, where he eats them. Back at the Psychetron, Cortex states he was wrong about Crash and attempts to send Crash into a different dimension, only to have the Psychetron malfunction and send Cortex into Crash's brain, much to Coco's surprise and both Crash and Nina's confusion. Cortex screams and has a meltdown after seeing the multiple clones while Crash, who doesn't seem to be worried, just picks his ear and smiles.
The gameplay in Crash Twinsanity is different compared to previous games in the series. For a start, there are over-worlds (such as N. Sanity Island (Hub)) that contain levels (i.e. Jungle Bungle), rather than Warp Rooms and the game has a more free-roam feel. That means there is also not a Load/Save screen, instead, the game is automatically saved by activating a World Crate.
Not all has changed, Crates, Crystals and Gems are still present, although, crystals do not really have much importance in the plot other than for Cortex's Psychetron machine. Gems are no longer earned by breaking crates; instead, they have to be found, this can range from incredibly easy to really challenging. Crates serve mostly for Wumpa Fruit and lives.
Crash's gameplay is mostly the same as before, he can still do his trademark spin attack, double jump and body slam moves. Like always, he has Aku Aku with him. The mask works just like before. He can give from 1 level protection to 3 level invincibility, but it does not last long and Aku Aku no longer protects Crash from TNTs and Nitros. Occasionally, you are paired with Dr. Cortex, working together as a team, they are both fighting over a crystal and Crash gains the upper hand, turning his creator into a lethal weapon, Crash can use Cortex to slam Enemies with his mallet like head, spin with him, increasing striking range and throw Cortex over to an area where he can shoot enemies with his Ray Gun, activate levers or collect gems, much to the doctors reluctance.
Cortex himself will sometimes go solo, armed with his ray gun and a limited amount of ammunition. If the blaster runs out of ammo, Cortex can't do anything aside from screaming and trip which works like Crash's slide kick. His gameplay is more of a Shooter with the gun's crosshairs showing automatically at something that can be shot (such as a bell to take care of Robotic Janitors). Cortex unfortunately can only do a small jump which can be tricky on platforming sections. He is accompanied by Uka Uka as his mask.
Along Crash and Cortex's adventure, Nina becomes a playable character. Nina can use her bionic arms to grab grappling hooks and fists to punch enemies, she can also spin like Crash which lasts a moment longer and pull a much better jump than her uncle but can not double jump. She has Uka Uka as her mask too.
Other areas of gameplay include, Humiliskate, when Crash is using Cortex like a sled at high speed, avoiding hazards and Nitro Crates. Doc Amok, where Cortex is in some kind of trouble, so Crash will have to clear the path of enemies and hazards before Cortex runs into them, if he does, Crash will have failed and have to go back to the last Checkpoint, however he will not lose a life. Finally, Rollerbrawl, when Crash and Cortex are having a fight in a cartoon style ball of fists and fury, the player will have to control the pair as they careen down, all you can do is move about in this mode. If stopped the duo can be seen abusing each other (like Cortex giving Crash a spanking). Also, briefly in one level Cortex will get stuck in a pipe and Crash will have to roll him around and solve puzzles to get him through the different pipes successfully.
In the final battle against the Evil Twins, Crash jumps in controlling Mecha-Bandicoot. The robot can shoot plasma balls and fire missiles. This is the only part where Mecha-Bandicoot is playable.
Left Analog Stick: Move
Right Analogue Stick: Control Camera
R1, R2, L1, L2 Buttons: Center Camera
Triangle Button: View Inventory
X Button: Jump, press again to Double Jump
Square Button: Spin
Circle Button: Crouch, hold and move to Crawl, press when moving to Knee Slide
X and Circle Buttons: Body Slam
Circle and X Buttons: When moving to Slide Jump
Square Button: Fire Ray Gun, hold to Charge-Up and then release
X Button: Jump
Circle Button: Crouch, hold and move to Crawl, press when moving to Body Slide
X and Circle Buttons: Radial Blast
R1 and L1 Buttons: Strafe
Circle Button: Punch/Wall Reel
X Button: Jump
Square Button: Spin
X and Circle Buttons: Jump Punch/Wall Reel
Crash & Cortex
Square Button: Spin
Circle Button: Twin Slam
X Button: Jump
Square and Circle Buttons: Twin Spin
X and Circle Buttons: Twin Throw
Square Button: Tap to fire Missiles, hold and release to fire Plasma
X Button: Jump
Circle Button: Speed Up
X Button: Jump
The game's original soundtrack was created and performed by the Spiralmouth band. A few contents of it were removed, like the level Gone a Bit Coco, that would be after High Seas Hi-Jinks, and other enemies, like Evil Coco, but all that content can be seen in a concept gallery. Before the game got its title, many others were said for it. The first being 'Crash Bandicoot: Evolution', then 'Crash Bandicoot: Fully Fluxed', then 'Crash Bandicoot: Tandemonium', then 'Crash Bandicoot: Unlimited'. After that, 'Crash Bandicoot: Twinsane' came up, which eventually evolved into Twinsanity. During the "Birthday Party" scene, Polar can be seen holding a Baseball Bat (even though he's not a villain). Still, one of the creators revealed the reason for this: Polar wanted his revenge for Crash riding on his back in Crash 2. We were told that Fake Crash was supposed to appear at a cameo in Crash Twinsanity, but was removed from the game. In the game, many hidden items can be found through either using a cheating device, or a glitch. These hidden items can range from a Life Crate to items never seen through normal gameplay.
Spiralmouth composed the music for this game, who would later compose the music for Crash Tag Team Racing along with Marc Baril.
Several characters were removed from the game, including the Ant Leader, a giant Ant that would have led the Ant Drones, Capu Capu, who owned a boat and would have taken Crash to the Iceberg Lab or N. Sanity Island if Crash gave him eighteen fish, Evil Coco, an alternate version of Coco that lives in the Tenth Dimension, and Evil Capu Capu, who would have served the same role as his counterpart.
During development, loads of different levels were removed from the game, most of them never got into development and some were deleted, but can still be seen in photos or videos today.
Coco would have had a much bigger role, and would have even been a playable character and would have joined Crash and Cortex on their quest to stop the Twins.
Due to the finished product of the game being rushed, glitches are abundant in the game, with over 500 discovered.
Crash Twinsanity received positive reviews from critics upon release. Play Magazine declared that "Traveller's Tales has delivered a 60 frame/s cartoon epic without sacrificing expanse, dwarfing boss encounters or vivid effects by skillfully balancing model and environment integrity with performance." James B. Pringle of IGN said that "Publisher Vivendi Universal and developer Traveller's Tales have infused so much humor and likeability into the game that you will literally laugh out loud. You'll look forward to defeating each boss not just because you're that much closer to beating the game, but to witness some of the best in-game dialogue and funniest voice acting around."
Andrew Wooldridge of 1Up.com said the game "is funny, fun to play, and is a definite improvement on the claustrophobic linear levels of games past". Chris Stead of Gamepro described the game as "great fun for our gaming youth and a humorous piece of nostalgia for veterans keen to spank their bandicoots, one last time". Brent Soboleski of TeamXbox crowned the game as "one of the best Crash titles to have been released since its earliest inception on home consoles, and its creative use of combining past enemies as partners is what gives Twinsanity a new lease on life". Nick Valentino of GameZone said that the game "rises above the game's original roots to bring a game that's both refreshingly humorous as well as downright enjoyable".
However, Louis Bedigian of the same site described the game as "double the insanity for all you psychopath-loving gamers out there, but it's half the fun for gamers". Ryan Davis of Gamespot concluded that "it's a little rough around the edges, and it doesn't break new ground for 3D platformers, but it gives the series the shot in the arm that Wrath of Cortex failed to, and what it does, it does pretty well" (Cortex even makes a reference to WoC's failure in a cinematic). Official Xbox Magazine declared that "even if you're frustrated by dying on a jump for the 50th time, you'll still think it's funny." Kristan Reed of EuroGamer said that "the gameplay variation is there for all to see, and when it hits the mark it — believe it or not — is every bit as enjoyable as the very best the genre has to offer, with some true high points to look back on."
PSMagazine praised the graphics and controls but criticized the level design, saying that it was "designed to kill the player in as many cheap ways as possible". A reviewer for Game Informer finished with "While it pains me to say this, maybe Crash should make like the entire cast of Blossom and disappear." Official U.S. Playstation Magazine described the game as "a bummer" and "a tragic tale of missed opportunities, as a funny, engaging platformer shines through the me-too muck". Electronic Gaming Monthly decided that "the funny writing (courtesy of an ex-Ren & Stimpy scribe) can't save this uninspired rehash of antiquated Crash antics with lackluster visuals.
- In the demo for this game, the title was "Crash Bandicoot: Unlimited".
- This is also the first Third-person Shooter game in the series, despite Warped and The Wrath of Cortex involve Crash using the bazooka, but they're not official shooter games.
- This game is a reference of Jak and Daxter, another Naughty Dog project which is a third-person shooter and buddy platform game after Naughty Dog lost the rights of the Crash Bandicoot franchise.
- The Iceberg Lab warp room in the demo can be found in the game via the levitation hack.
- This is the first time Cortex is playable in the main series and the first game in which Nina is playable.
- Coco was going to be a playable character, but she was reduced to a cameo during some of the cutscenes due to cut development time.
- N. Tropy looks more bulky because of his bigger arms and legs.
- This is the first game to introduce Lex Lang as the voice for Cortex.
- If Crash touches Coco while she's paralyzed, he will take damage.
- This game no longer uses box gems, as players need to complete puzzles in order to get gems.
- This is the first Crash game to feature a movable camera.
- There is no way to skip the in-game cut scenes, even after they're viewed for the first time.
- The cut scene where Farmer Ernest offers a crystal if Crash and Cortex clear his farm of Worms is a reference to video games like Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy and Spyro the Dragon where a task must be completed to get a reward. In this case however, Cortex blasts the farmer down and just takes the crystal, stating; "I'm an evil scientist. What do you expect? This isn't a game."
- All of the characters look a bit different from their previous designs.
- This is the first Crash platformer to not use "Bandicoot" in the title.
- This is the first Crash game where all the game's music is done by vocalization, which means all the music is done by a person's mouth with very little to no instruments used.
- Relics were going to make an appearance, but got cut from the game.
- This game marks the last appearance of Tiny's original design in the main game continuity, as well as N. Tropy and Dingodile's last appearance overall in the main continuity.
- There is a removed alarm sound within the game's main sound file.
- The music file does not only contain the retail version's music, but instead many "takes" of each section of each music, with slight differences each take.
- The cutscene where they are about to player to the tenth dimension, where Cortex quotes "Come now, as we explore, a new dimension!! .....It should've been two new dimensions but we...ran out of time." directly references at the cut development time, where the other dimension was ultimately scrapped.
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