When Crash Bandicoot first became a video game mascot he was tied intrinsically to the PlayStation brand. Commercials, advertisements, and just the general vibe of the character was all about pushing the PS1 and slamming the competition, which at the time was mainly Nintendo. Decades later and the character has appeared on other platforms many times, but those original games are the real gems, and they’ve been locked to the PlayStation, until now.
The Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy release first hit PS4 a few months ago, and it was excellent. My full review on PS4 noted that this is “a textbook example of an amazing remake.” Featuring all three original classic adventures, the compilation alone is fantastic. Then the team at Vicarious Visions went much, much further. The graphics are overhauled to the point that this looks like a brand new release. There’s new features, like being able to play as Crash’s sister more often, and the fan-favorite box drop at the end of levels.
With all of this in mind, the Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy has been hailed by many as one of the greatest remakes available. So, now that it’s heading to Switch, we had to take another look at the package as a whole. For a full rundown of the game itself, check out our original PS4 review linked above. Here we’ll focus on the Switch port specifically, marking where it’s better and where it’s worse than what can be found elsewhere. You’ll probably find that this fits with other Switch ports in terms of the usual pros and cons.
Simply having Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy on Switch is a real treat. The platform already oozes nostalgia, with some of its best games offering retro experiences, both truly old and somewhat new. Crash on Switch fits the system’s pre-established demo very nicely and is a perfect fit for the platform. Immediately upon booting the game up in handheld mode the potential was clear.
Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy look fantastic once again
The Nintendo Switch’s dual purposes often come into conflict with one another. Playing Breath of the Wild on a TV is a markedly better experience than in handheld mode, though having the option to take the game on the go is worth the sacrifice. For Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy that sacrifice is all the more acceptable thanks to the game’s overall structure working so well while away from the house. Short, retro-styled levels are beaten in just a few minutes, letting you pick the game up and play a session without too much fear of interruption.
It also helps that the game retains the visual polish that was present on PS4, to a degree. Fur shading is pretty much gone, the game is running at a lower resolution, and visuals overall have been downgraded. This is true in docked mode, but even moreso when playing as a handheld. However, the level of this downgrade is far less impactful than I anticipated. The Switch is really shining when it comes to these ports, and Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy look fantastic once again, despite the definite visual demotion.
And that’s pretty much it in terms of consequences for Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy on Nintendo Switch. The visuals don’t and will never live up fully to the PS4 and upcoming Xbox One release, but they do come far closer than I or many other people anticipated. The question for potential buyers is whether or not this is worth the benefits the Switch offers, specifically its portability.
If this feature is something that seems useful at all for your Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy experience then this Switch port is phenomenal. The handheld performance is exceptional, and the game is structured perfectly for on-the-go play. If you already have the game on PS4 then the math might not work out, but this is certainly one of the better Switch ports out there.
Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy was one of the best remakes available on the PS4 and it earns that honor once again on Nintendo Switch. The visuals don’t fully match up, but they are much closer than would be expected out of Nintendo’s little console/handheld hybrid. And it’s in that dual state that the game shines the brightest, allowing for portable play that works so well with Crash’s gameplay structure.
Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy
- Available On: PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC
- Published By: Activision
- Developed By: Vicarious Visions
- Genre: Platformer
- US Release Date: June 29th, 2018
- Reviewed On: Switch
- Quote: "Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy was one of the best remakes available on the PS4 and it earns that honor once again on Nintendo Switch."