Crash Bandicoot 4 is a difficult game. That goes doubly so if you’re attempting to grab every collectible, skin and flashback tape from every level. While past Crash games have gone for a fairly simple collectathon adventure, It’s About Time is absolutely stuffed with collectibles and activities that’ll keep you playing for many, many hours. If you’re looking to grab everything the game has to offer or you just want to go on a fun adventure, you may need some tips to power through it.
No matter your Crash experience level you’re likely to run into countless deaths and missing boxes on a regular basis. Pro tip: take it slow. There’s so much to see and do in Crash Bandicoot 4 and you’ll want to take time to smell the roses.
Here’s everything we’ve learned about the game so far.
You should explore every crevasse
There are boxes hiding in every corner of Crash Bandicoot. If there’s a crack, there’s a box. If there’s a hidden room, there’s a box. There’ll be boxes floating in the air and boxes hidden beneath jungle vines. If an object in the game looks textured, it probably is. Look behind it and around it and everywhere you can see (and can’t see!)
To get all the boxes and claim your special gem, you'll need to be constantly vigilant.
Don't worry too much about getting every box
Crash Bandicoot 4 is an absolute delight, but it's at its best when you're not stressing about every box. In your first run through, take the time to appreciate the scenery. Go for a stroll. Don't stress about the three boxes you missed on your vine slide. There's plenty of other things to do in every Crash level with multiple gems available for collecting apples, exploring hidden spaces and completing levels without dying.
It's likely you won't be able to do every gem task on a single runthrough so if you start missing boxes, don't worry about it. Just go with the flow and grab what collectibles you can.
Consider playing Crash Bandicoot 4 on Modern mode
Classic Crash players will be tempted to jump in with the 'Classic' mode of Crash Bandicoot 4, which gives you a life-based health system and kicks you out of levels when you run out of lives. Yes, this is how classic Crash worked — but it's a one-way ticket to frustration with It's About Time's gameplay. Simply put, the game is designed to be played in Modern mode. It's a hard game, and having set checkpoints is an excellent way to solve this.
Don't be brave — use Modern mode if you want to enjoy the game fully.
Practice makes perfect for the vine slide segments
The shiniest addition to Crash Bandicoot 4 is the excellent vine sliding level segments. These pop up pretty often in the game, and you'll need to master them whether you want to collect every box or not. The physics of the vine slide are a bit difficult to grasp and there's a slight animation-led delay between riding high on the vines and flipping to their underneath side. You'll want to watch out for this delay and time your grip change right to avoid oncoming obstacles.
It'll take practice. Don't worry if you miss your first few boxes, you just need to get the hang of the slide and work out the right timings to collect everything.
Crash Bandicoot 4 grooves to a beat
Many of Crash Bandicoot 4's bosses and challenges are actually timed to a beat, but you'll need to pay attention to feel the rhythm. N. Gin's boss fight is a perfect example of this: enemies and deadly beams move to a toe-tapping soundtrack. Listen to the beat, watch the patterns and you can find the weak points in his defences.
N. Brio's boss fight works similarly, as does Lani-Loli's phase-jumping.
Listen out for the beat and you can't miss it. It'll help you time jumps and attacks to perfection.
Use the yellow ring around Crash's feet
Another great new feature of Crash Bandicoot 4 is the inclusion of a yellow ring shadow around Crash's feet. While it may prove a little bit distracting at first, it's extremely helpful and you should absolutely take advantage of it. This yellow marker lets you know where Crash is placed in the game world and helps orient your jumps correctly.
When you're traversing levels, it can be difficult to figure out where you're going to land — unless you watch where the shadow of the ring lands. The ring is your friend. Remember to watch it.
The double jump and slide-kick are also your friends
Crash has a bunch of new moves this time around, but the most useful of them all are still the classics: the double jump and the slide kick.
The double jump is essential because it lets you manoeuvre Crash and change direction mid-flight. It's great for avoiding obstacles or biding time for a phase-shift. Double jumps will save your life. Make sure you use them.
Equally important is the slide kick. The slide kick, coupled with a jump, with get you further than a regular jump and help you defeat most enemies. Ducking and double jumping will also get you more air. Work on these combos and you should be able to grab every box and work your way to victory. Again, practice makes perfect here.
Crash Bandicoot 4 is a hard game and it's dangerous to go alone. These tips should help you on your way.
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