Crash Bandicoot: On the Run review: Relive the classic on your mobile

Crash Bandicoot is back, but this time he’s on the run and on mobile!

Crash Bandicoot: On the Run is the latest Crash-based mobile game to release on mobile devices. The game is finally released globally as of 25th March 2021. The game is developed by King, who many of you will know from popular titles such as Candy Crush Saga. So, we found this as good a time as any to get a review out. Here in this article, we will review Crash Bandicoot: On the Run and share our first impressions of the game.

Same old Bandicoot, a brand new adventure

Starting off with Crash Bandicoot: On the Run review, even though this isn’t a mainline game for the bandicoot that doesn’t mean that the team at King didn’t include a full story for everyone to enjoy. The story is based around Crash’s nemesis Dr. Neo Cortex as he begins to call in monsters from different dimensions into his own universe. Crash can’t deal with this on his own though, luckily his sister Coco has the brains to help him. She creates various devices and potions that Crash can use in order to send these monsters back to their own Dimension. Equipped with these new potions, Crash now must run across the world and throw potions to undo Neo Cortex’s nefarious plot.

Crash Bandicoot: On the Run review

The game seems to have online functionality in “teams” which you know as guilds in other games. Players form teams and defeat neo cortex’s monsters in order to get rewards each season such as skin, trophies, and more. Unfortunately, it’s another feature that is coming soon.

New ways to play

Well, unlike the original 3D gameplay of Crash, this game opts for a more Temple Run/Subway Surfer style of play. As said before, Crash now needs to throw a potion at these monsters in order to send them back to their world. In order to reach that stage, however, you will first need to craft the potions. In order to craft the potion, the materials must be harvested from the map. Once you have collected enough materials for the potion you are ushered onto another stage where you must defeat all the boss’s minions. Only after the potion is crafted and all the minions are defeated are you finally able to fight the boss and throw the potion in order to vanquish him. This process is rinsed and repeated in order to defeat all the bosses.

Well, how does the gameplay though? The game is very similar controls to all other endless runners. You are able to swipe left and right to move on tracks, slide under fences and jump over blocks, you are also given as spin attack reminiscent of Crash’s actually attacking move from his games in order to defeat minions and break boxes for wumpa fruit.

Crash Bandicoot: On the Run review

Even though the game is just an Endless runner the game was quite responsive, and we were really surprised by the animations on Crash. They did a good job at making everything feel much like the Playstation classic. As mentioned, you need to spin in order to break boxes and defeat enemies. Even the way that the enemies spin out after being hit by your attack is reminiscent of the older games. The game may not seem as though much thought went into it simply because it’s an endless runner, but we can say that due to the simplicity of the overall game, the developers were able to further flesh out all of the mechanics in order to make it more true its source material.

More than just an endless runner

Aside from just the endless running segments, there is also a small base building sections where the player must upgrade their island in order to craft potions and farms so that you can gather materials while offline. The game to some degree has pseudo-idle-like mechanics which would help alleviate some of the monotony found in constantly defeating the same enemy for drops.

We found it really useful to be able to collect my materials in multiple locations as the later bosses require dozens of materials in order to craft the potions needed to defeat them. There are many bosses to fight and 3 stages out in the current version of the game. The game also has 3 outfits for you to unlock with Crash and you can even play as Coco!

Crash Bandicoot: On the Run review

Normally when you play these sorts of games you feel aimless as you’re just only looking to get the highest score. The base-building elements here really give you a sense of direction as while you’re on the map they will tell you where certain materials are. Now while you’re running you have to make decisions such as going to a harder part of the map because it will have the item you need to finish that house or if you should just take the easy route to get more Wumpa which you will eventually need. Tiny changes like this to the system really bring a new life to a rather stagnant genre.

Why review it so early?

The game is still in Early Access and as such many of its features are still labeled as coming soon, as such it’s hard to note if any of my issues may just be because we’re missing key features. Even still we’ll be objective and say that even though the Endless running + micromanaging is fun, that’s all the game is. You just run to collect items and use those items to build your base, then you do it again until you fight a boss.

Even then boss fights are actually “fights” as once you reach them after the endless running section, Crash has a sort of fight where you throw bombs at the boss culminating in the potion toss minigame. We really don’t know what else they can add to make it more engaging, but even more mechanics in these boss fights would take this game a long way for me.

Final Verdict

If you like polished, fun, endless runner-style games or even just have a passing nostalgia for the original Crash games then Crash Bandicoot: On the Run will fit like a glove. From our review perspective, Crash Bandicoot: On the Run is very modernized so if you remember how those old games felt this one will naturally just feel so much snappier and smoother. The developers at King have really outdone themselves with the feel of the game if anything else is to be praised. The audio tracks have that nostalgic Crash bandicoot feel and they took me back to my PS1 days, we can’t help but promote how much we feel the devs wanted you to enjoy this game.

The game doesn’t have the most oppressive monetization as all we saw were ads for double rewards which weren’t needed and subscriptions that give you crafting material to bypass farming for materials. If you want to spend, the game just directly gives you what you want so while we don’t see any need for it, at the very least we can say that what you buy is what you get and there is no gambling or chance mechanics involved. If you’re looking for a casual little romp or a trip down memory lane with crash bandicoot, then this game is surely something you should look at.

What are your opinions on the Crash Bandicoot: On the Run game and your review of it? Do let us know in the comments!

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