Return To Home Page
October 28, 2003
Crash Nitro Kart - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
21/11/2003VivendiVicarious Visions1-4$99.95

Click To  Enlarge Image
Damn, that's a big clock.
Crash Bandicoot. During the 1990's the orange Australian marsupial was a mascot for Sony's Playstation. For one reason or another the brand was sold by Naughty Dog to Universal (rather then Sony which everyone expected) which now means that the little guy now can appear on non-Sony consoles. Indeed Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Coretex has appeared on multiple platforms. This game, rather the being a platform title is actually a spin off in the veign of Super Mario Kart, that being a racing game featuring all the character from the main platform titles.

Click To  Enlarge Image
Some of the very bright graphics.
Beleive it or not the developers have even managed to work a storyline into the game. Kidnapped by the ruthless Emperor Velo and forced to race in his galactic coliseum, Crash must race his way to victory in order to save the Earth from destruction; but it won’t be easy, as he must compete against foes both old and new before a final showdown with Velo himself! Well OK, the storyline isn't really needed in a game such as this. This is kart racing, and it's the first to the finish line that counts.

Click To  Enlarge Image
The crates make a return.
Single player modes are fairly standard and include Adventure, Arcade and Time Trial. As expected the focus of this game, however, is on multi-player. With up to 4 players through split-screen mode (no internet gameplay sadly) this looks set to become one of the best party games on Playstation 2. With weapons such as homing missiles, mines and tornados among others we can expect plenty of fun. The developers, Vicarious Visions, have included 17 different courses to master set accross 4 different worlds. Also promised is the ability of the karts to transform to adapt to their environments, although exactly wat this includes remains a mystery.

Click To  Enlarge Image
6th won't be good enough!
Obviously the graphics and sound are heavily inspired by the platform games. The colours are bold and the characters, as previously mentioned, all originate from the Crash Bandicoot universe. Hopefully the frame rate will hold up during the frantic action of the game. The sound includes a lively range of soundtracks while the effects retain the cartoon style of other games in the Crash Bandicoot universe.

While Crash Nitro Kart is certainly aimed at the younger gamer there is no reason that with solid balance and gameplay this game can't appeal to the hardcore gamer and rival Super Mario Kart. This game should hit our shores around December 2003.