Making Crash Bandicoot – part 1

Crash Bandicoot cover

In the summer of 1994 Naughty Dog, Inc. was still a two-man company, myself and my longtime partner Jason Rubin. Over the preceding eight years, we had published six games as a lean and mean duo, but the time had come to expand.

In 1993 and 1994 we invested our own money to develop the 3D0 fighting game, Way of the Warrior. In the summer of 1994 we finished it and sold the rights to Universal Studios. At the same time we agreed to a “housekeeping” deal with Universal, which meant moving to LA, and for me bailing out on my M.I.T. PhD halfway. It certainly didn’t turn out to be a bad decision.

Jason and I had been debating our next game for months, but the three-day drive from Boston to LA provided ample opportunity. Having studied arcade games intensely (yeah, in 1994 they were still relevant) we couldn’t help but notice that 2 or 3 of the leading genres had really begun making the transition into full 3D rendering.

Racing had, with Ridge Racer and Virtua Racing. Fighting, with Virtua Fighter. And gun games, with Virtua Cop. Racing was clearly 100% the better in 3D, and while Virtua Fighter wasn’t as playable as Street Fighter, the writing was on the wall.

Sensing opportunity, we turned to our own favorite genre, the character platform action game (CAG for short). In the 80s and early 90s the best sellers on home systems were dominated by CAGs and their cousins (like “walk to the right and punch” or “walk to the right and shoot”). Top examples were Mario, Sonic, and our personal recent favorite, Donkey Kong Country.

So on the second day of the drive, passing Chicago and traveling through America’s long flat heartland, fed on McDonalds, and accompanied by a gassy Labrador/Ridgeback mix (also fed on McDonalds), the idea came to us.

We called it the “Sonic’s Ass” game. And it was born from the question: what would a 3D CAG be like? Well, we thought, you’d spend a lot of time looking at “Sonic’s Ass.” Aside from the difficulties of identifying with a character only viewed in posterior, it seemed cool. But we worried about the camera, dizziness, and the player’s ability to judge depth – more on that later.

Jason, Andy & Morgan on arriving at Universal

Before leaving Boston we’d hired our first employee (who didn’t start full time until January 1995), a brilliant programmer and M.I.T. buddy of mine named Dave Baggett. We were also excited to work closely with Universal VP Mark Cerny, who had made the original Marble Madness and Sonic 2. In California, in 1994, this foursome of me, Jason, Dave, and Mark were the main creative contributors to the game that would become Crash Bandicoot.

We all agreed that the “Sonic’s Ass,” game was an awesome idea. As far as we knew, no one had even begun work on bringing the best-selling-but-notoriously-difficult CAG to 3D. Shigeru Miyamoto, the creator of Mario, was said to be working on Yoshi’s Island, his massive ode to 2D action.

But an important initial question was “which system?”

The 3D0 was DOA, but we also got our hands on specs for the upcoming Sega Saturn, the Sega 32X, and the mysterious Sony Playstation. The decision really didn’t take very long.  3D0, poor 3D power, and no sales. 32X, unholy Frankenstein’s monster – and no sales. Saturn, also a crazy hybrid design, and really clunky dev units. Then there was the Sony. Their track record in video games was null, but it was a sexy company and a sexy machine – by far the best of the lot. I won’t even bring up the Jaguar.

So we signed the mega-harsh Sony “developer agreement” (pretty much the only non-publisher to ever do so) and forked out like $35,000 for a dev unit.  Gulp.  But the real thing that cinched the deal in Sony’s favor though wasn’t the machine, but…

Before we continue to part 2 below, my parter and friend Jason Rubin offers the following thoughts on this section:

Andy and I always liked trying to find opportunities that others had missed.  Fill holes in a sense.  We had done Way of the Warrior in large part because the most popular games of the time were fighting games and the new 3DO system didn’t have a fighting game on it.  Our decision to do a character action game on the PlayStation was not only based on bringing the most popular genre on consoles into the 3D, but also because Sega already had Sonic and Nintendo already had Mario.  Instead of running headlong into either of these creative geniuses backyard, we decided to take our ball to a field with no competition.

Filling a hole had worked to an extent with Way of the Warrior.  The press immediately used Way as a yardstick to make a comparison point against other systems and their fighting games.  This gave it a presence that the game itself might never have had.  And as a result, ardent fans of the system would leap to defend the title even when perfectly fair points were made against it.  The diagonal moves were hard to pull off because the joypad on the 3DO sucked?  No problem, said the fans, Way of the Warrior plays fantastically if you just loosen the screws on the back of the joypad.

Why couldn’t the same effect work with a character action game on PlayStation?

And remember, at the time these games were the top of the pile.  It is hard to look at the video game shelves today and think that only 15 years ago childish characters dominated it.  There were first person shooters on the PC, of course, but sales of even the biggest of them couldn’t compare to Mario and Sonic.  Even second tier character games often outsold big “adult” games.

It’s also easy to forget how many possible alternatives there were along the way.  Most of Nebraska was filled with talk of a game called “Alosaurus and Dinestein” which was to be back to the future like plot with dinosaurs in a 2d side scrolling character action game.  I still like the name.

The “Sonic’s ass” nomenclature was more than a casual reference to the blue mascot turned 90 degrees into the screen.  It defined the key problem in moving a 2d game into the third dimension:  You would always be looking at the characters ass.  This might play well (it had never been tried) but it certainly would not be the best way to present a character.

Our solution, which evolved over the next 2 years, was multi-fold.  First, the character would start the game facing the screen (more on this later).  Second there would be 2d levels that guaranteed quality of gameplay and a chance to see the character in a familiar pose allowing comparison against old 2d games.  And third, we would attempt the reverse of a Sonic ass level – the run INTO the screen – which became the legendary boulder levels. [ NOTE from Andy, more on that in part 4 ]

It may have been this very Sonic’s ass problem that caused Naka-san to “cop out” of making a true 3D game called Nights for Saturn.  I also believe, but have no proof, that he felt so unsure of the move to 3D that Sega didn’t want to risk Sonic on that first experimental title.  Instead they created a new character.  This lost Sega the goodwill that Sonic would have brought to the three way game comparison that eventually ensued.  That ended up working to our favor.

Of course Miyamoto-san did not have this problem.  He created a truly new type of character action game with Mario 64.  The controls and open world allowed you to see the character from all sides.  Eventually this proved to be the future of 3d Character games.  But at the time it had disadvantages.  More on that later.

The concept of making a mascot game for the PlayStation was easy.  The odds of succeeding were next to nil.  Remember, we were two 24 year olds whose biggest title to date had not reached 100,000 units sold!  But if there was something we never lacked it was confidence.

NEXT PART [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11] PART 11 is brand new 08/13/11.

The index of all Crash posts is here.

And peek at my novel in progress: The Darkening Dream


The Crash Bandicoot in-game model. His only texture was the spots on his back, but every vertex was lovingly placed by Jason

116 comments on “Making Crash Bandicoot – part 1

  1. fen says:

    oh sure, just leave us hanging like that…

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jason Rubin and OKeijiDragon, Andrew Gavin. Andrew Gavin said: Making Crash Bandicoot – part 1: […]

  3. jane summer says:

    Hi Andy, I work with La Cachette Bistro and loved what you wrote. How can I send you information…

    from Jane

  4. Hamish says:

    More! I’ve finished these games more times than I can count…

  5. Robert says:

    I was just thinking today about why the histories behind these games were never fleshed out in detail in like a book or something. Certainly a series so popular would deserve it!

    Glad to see this, can’t wait for more!

  6. Dave says:

    Shouldn’t that be “brilliant programmer and incredible voice acting talent behind WoW’s Konotori”? Ha… thanks for the kudos.

  7. Jay says:

    Been playing the game for ten years and I’m still learning about it. Please Papa Gavin, tell us more!

  8. agavin says:

    Part 2 has been posted HERE.

  9. bluepasj says:

    Incredible! Crash’s one of the best games and best series ever! For me, is in the same level as Sonic or Mario.

  10. […] Crash Bandicoot – part 3 PREVIOUS installment, or the FIRST POST. Crash in the […]

  11. […] an in-depth look at how the popular 3D platformer came to be.And trust me, it’s a great read.You can check out the first part here on his blog.Shorten URL Gavin, crash, crash bandicoot, Crash Bandicoot 2, Crash […]

  12. […] PREVIOUS installment, or the FIRST POST. […]

  13. 32173 says:

    I am so god damn happy that you and Jason did this game. Back then it was a pretty nice game for a kid like me, but over the years it has aged so much better than the Mario and Sonic games. All the three series have good gameplay, but Crash is the only one that still appears cool, and I don’t even need to be embarrassed by my nostalgia for him.

    • agavin says:

      Glad you enjoyed it! It does age well. Every time I look at it — say when finding these gameplay videos — I think it still looks sweet, hardly like a 15 year old game! Every couple of years I’ll go back and play through, always cursing Jason’s name when I get to “Road to Nowhere” (he designed that level) :-). You should have seen it before we made it “easy.” An important lesson we learned tuning Crash in the summer of 1996, and learned more between Crash 1 and 2 was that things don’t need to be BRUTALLY hard — just varied and challenging.

  14. Andrew says:

    Hi Andy. Thank you for deciding to write this series — I just found out about it today!

    Crash was the first game I really grew attached to as a child. Not only did it feed my love of platformers and a dream to one day ride the back of a polar bear cub, but it gave me an appetite for making games some day myself. The more I’ve studied and/or practiced game development, the more I wondered how this game got made in the first place. Looking back, it doesn’t take much effort to see how crucial it was to the landscape of videogames back then. It’s not so rare to find a retrospective on any game these days with how much games-media, blogging, and the internet have joined forces. For whatever reason though, I could never find anything on Crash in this regard. You can imagine my excitement at finally seeing a serial post-mortem on it.

    During the course of my final year as a game design student at the Cleveland Institute of Art, I actually had a vinyl poster from Crash 2 hung above my desk (one of those promotional things they’d otherwise have thrown away at Gamestop). In looking for a way to relax between stressful thesis work, I hooked my PS and replayed through the entire game. It does hold up really well.

    At any rate, thanks for creating Crash way back when, and for all you guys do to for the medium and industry. Truly inspirational.

    By the way, I had to do vertex painting myself during an internship this past summer…I can’t believe the original Crash model was “textured” that way!! My jaw hit the floor, haha.

  15. […] PREVIOUS installment, or the FIRST POST. […]

  16. Neo Yi says:

    I am very happy to see a “Making of” for one of my favorite game series ever. It’s such a shame Crash’s presence is so little nowadays that I can barely come across video game articles (mostly retrospects) that even mentions but a snippet of him, if at all. Yeah, his latter games aren’t exactly the cream of the crop, but his earlier games have been so influential during its hey-days and to see people ignoring that is a shameful cry.

    Hopefully memories and lookback such as these will help keep the Crash Bandicoot legacy afloat. The game series will always have a special place in my heart. Thank you for giving us an in-depth look. I eagerly await for more.

    • agavin says:

      We always joked that Crash was a little like hot girl from high school who came back to the 10 year reunion looking… not so great. But it isn’t his fault. He had some rough partners after Naughty Dog.

  17. Doug says:

    Hey got to say this whole article is incredibly interesting, got really nostalgic while reading (Crash and Street Racer were my first games for PSX, got em’ when I was about 7). One of the things that I have always wondered was, where did you get Ripper Roos laugh? I’ve heard it in movies (Elf) and even some other games (Darkstalkers).

    • agavin says:

      I can’t remember if Roo’s laugh was recorded for us, or if it came from a sound effect library. “Sound guys,” like the awesome Mike Gollom who worked on Crash, have vast libraries of sounds that they have licensed. They often use these as starting places to create new sounds.

  18. […] PREVIOUS installment, or the FIRST POST. […]

  19. […] Head over to Andy's blog and check out the full story. […]

  20. […] Head over to Andy's blog and check out the full story. […]

  21. […] Head over to Andy's blog and check out the full story. […]

  22. […] Article here Posted by B at 6:31 pm […]

  23. John Roberts says:

    I just finished reading all six parts, and I gotta say this was a brilliant article to follow. You guys at Naughty Dog were ahead of the curve back in the day, and right now sitting very pretty with the best of the best of Developers.

    You guys rock.

  24. […] Making Crash Bandicoot – part 1Making Crash Bandicoot – part 2Making Crash Bandicoot – part 3Making Crash Bandicoot – part 4Making Crash Bandicoot – part 5Making Crash Bandicoot – part 6 […]

  25. […] Dog para fazê-lo, Andy Gavin e Jason Rubin, que você pode ler (em 6 partes) a partir do primeiro, aqui. (em […]

  26. […] lengthy series of posts on the making of Crash Bandicoot. Click here for the PREVIOUS or for the FIRST POST […]

  27. Julian says:

    Hey Gavin ,great article, just finished reading. I was wondering, do you ever think the old crash bandicoot games (1,2,3) will make their way to Xbox Live Arcade?
    I would love to play a HD remake of them and i bet it would sell like a wildfire ! 🙂


    There are millions who would love to see you take the reigns for Crash Bandicoot once more.

    You made games that made millions, created a icon and phenomenon

    What are the chances that you can get the rights to Crash Bandicoot back? The characters and games you once made have since been destroyed by other developers, and they have even canceled their last game..

  29. […] lengthy series of posts on the making of Crash Bandicoot. Click here for the PREVIOUS or for the FIRST POST […]

  30. […] Making Crash Bandicoot – part 1Making Crash Bandicoot – part 2Making Crash Bandicoot – part 3Making Crash Bandicoot – part 4Making Crash Bandicoot – part 5Making Crash Bandicoot – part 6 […]

  31. Victor says:

    Hi andy)) I’m from russia ) in 1996 when i was four 😀 it was my first game!)) So it still stays in my list of ALL TIME CONSOLE BEST GAMES))) It’s like John Lennon and Mercury. I’ve played Crash band. 1,2,3 and cart racing.. but I was dissapointed in crash bash… So now I know that after crash races “crash bash” was made by different studio!
    Now i dont spend much time on games but sometimes i buy and play games like Jak, Ratchet and clank etc.

    I almost lve you :DDDDDDDD Crash bandicoot reminds me my childhood)) I’ve played all four games two years ago and enjoyed it one more time)

    But I ve played it with jailbreaked psp with psx emulator, it would be vary cool if you could sell these games at playstation store (not only crash bandicoot 1) and I would buy it for 50$-70$ with great pleasure)) My dream if naughty dog make a remake of these games)

    With Best Wishes
    Studet (Moscow Institute of International Trade and Law)

    • agavin says:

      I’m thrilled you enjoyed it so much! That’s why we made them. They might not be high art, but we wanted them to be darn fun!

      • Victor says:

        So the good game came from it. Really it might not be an art but “all ingenious is simple”(Goebbels) You should know that this game is childhood for someone))

        Offtop. question: Do you play games??? I met many many people like you , who do their business well but dont use the product of this activity.

      • agavin says:

        I play lots — I’ve logged a rather obscene amount of time on WOW 🙂

      • Victor says:

        These games are too addictive) I’ve played too much time la2 and finally i overcomed this addiction) It takes too much time) But some of my friends who played la2 and then changed thair game to WoW say that WoW takes less time….
        Now I read more than play) but not the last week))) I was playing for 32 hours:D
        I changed games to snowboarding, girlfindin’ :D, education and etc)))

  32. Victor says:


  33. Victor says:

    But i lied… i play one-three console games a year

  34. G–Stokes says:

    Big fan here. I played the original three Crash Bandicoot games as a child and they had a pretty enormous effect on me. I’m glad my first console was a PlayStation – I harbour the sort of deep attachment to games like Crash, Spyro and Rayman that a lot of other people hold for Mario and Zelda, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    For me, one of the most fascinating aspects of a game is its atmosphere – in some ways, it can be even more important than the fun factor. That’s one of the things I love most about the original Crash games – they had a fantastic vibe, especially the second and third games. For example, the warp room in Crash 2 made me feel like I was in some sort of ancient, hallowed site, the air dense with unknowable histories – and when I passed through those hidden ways and found myself in the sixth chamber room, atop the ruins of Cortex’s castle and with the islands from the first game visible in the background… well, what can I say? It felt like I was entering the Holy of Holies – it’s pure magic.

    Another element I found wonderfully evocative was the scenery. Crash 3 featured vast, mysterious backdrops – I always wondered what was in that distant medieval castle, pondered what might lie within the neon skyscrapers of the future. The entire game was infused with mystery and possibilities.

    You get the picture (if I’m explaining myself clearly enough) – the Crash Bandicoot games are atmospheric masterpieces, and that sort of ‘feel’ stays in my mind afterwards even more than the enjoyable gameplay does. Other examples of excellent ambience include the wonderfully magical, cosmic warp room in Crash 3, the eerie, claustrophobic Generator Room in Crash 1, with Cortex’s face staring at the player across dark, unknowable voids, the floorless Great Hall with its pathway of gems… My question is this – did the developers make a deliberate effort to achieve this sort of mysterious, magical quality? It’s not as palpable in the Crash games as it is in Spyro or Rayman – some people may not even be consciously aware of it – but it’s still a very big part of what makes the series appealing to me. The post-Naughty Dog Crash games are simply lacking in this department, and neither Jak nor Uncharted achieve the same sort of feel. Do you have any thoughts regarding the early games’ atmospheric qualities? If not, that’s fine – I’m grateful simply for this opportunity to share my perspective and let you know how much I appreciate this aspect of the games. Thanks – for everything.

    • agavin says:

      Thanks! That’s an awesome post. Yes, we tried to capture exactly that kind of ambience — that we did successfully, still sometimes surprises me!

      • Victor says:

        Rly awesome post)) I don’t know english so good to speak out so )as in my native language))

  35. […] lengthy series of posts on the making of Crash Bandicoot. Click here for the PREVIOUS or for the FIRST POST […]

  36. […] can read the series, starting from part one, by clicking here. Andrew is on twitter at […]

  37. […] Making Crash Bandicoot « All Things Andy Gavin. Share this on: Mixx Delicious Digg Facebook […]

  38. […] lengthy series of posts on the making of Crash Bandicoot. Click here for the PREVIOUS or for the FIRST POST […]

  39. […] lengthy series of posts on the making of Crash Bandicoot. Click here for the PREVIOUS or for the FIRST POST […]

  40. […] This is the twelfth of a now lengthy series of posts on the making of Crash Bandicoot. Click here for the PREVIOUS or for the BEGINNING of the whole mess. […]

  41. isaak merritt says:

    i miss the lovable bandicoot

  42. robotnik says:

    Hey Andy, what’s your favourite level in Crash Bandicoot (2,3) and why?

    • agavin says:

      I don’t remember under which post, but somewhere in these first 6 I detailed that at length in the comments.

      • robotnik says:

        The only comment I found is in “Making Crash Bandicoot – Part 6”, where you said that >Sunset Vista< was one of your favourites. So what are your favs in Crash2/3 ?

        You also wrote that you played WoW. Did you pick Horde or Alliance ? 😀

      • agavin says:

        Horde of course. Undead warlock was my first toon, and still my main. I also have a druid and pally on the horde side. I did level a NE rogue to 60 in the old (classic) days to see what Ally was like.

      • robotnik says:

        For the Horde! Undead are cool 😀 , my main char is a Troll Shammy .
        So you never tried Cataclysm ? They rly changed a lot compared to classic. I started a Warlock (Worgen -Ally) in the new one and boy do they rock. 🙂

        Aside from that I’m rly looking forward to play Diablo 3 (and Rings of Power 2 😀 ).

      • agavin says:

        I leveled my Lock to 85 and maxed out his pre-raid gear in the heroics. I just didn’t feel like tackling a fourth round of endgame raids.

  43. Lianna says:

    Remember, when i was 10 and i was searching “The Making Of CB” and there’s no videos. Now, i’ll go to watch on YouTube because Charles Zembillas draws like me at watching. ^^. Can has videos?

  44. Emil says:

    Hi! I’m curious to find out, how did you come up with the character designs? For example, what was the inspiration behind a cross between a dingo and a crocodile? And a psychotic kangaroo (Ripper Roo, my favourite character! 😀 )? Also, what is your favourite character in any of the Crash games you were part of?
    Thanks! (Are one of these coming up for Crash Team Racing? :D)

    • agavin says:

      Cortex and Crash are my favorite characters. Our “idea” to a large extent for Cortex’s mutants was the crossing of various Tasmanian animals, and also the sort of mad scientist theme (N. Brio, N. Gin, N. Tropy etc).

  45. […] chapter covers loosely the same subject matter that Jason and I detail in our lengthy series of Crash blogs (found here). It’s even 98% accurate! If you enjoyed our Crash posts, I highly recommend you check out […]

  46. Andrea says:

    Ehi Andy, do you think that Activision will do something special for the Crash Bandicoot’s 15th Anniversary?

  47. Max says:

    This plays awfully but looks very nice, check it out:

  48. […] the stressful development (like their reaction to Super Mario 64) of Crash Bandicoot recently. You really should read it. Rubin told me Lenox’s attempt to recreate Crash Bandicoot reminded him of his own journey to […]

  49. […] eis o link para “Making Crash Bandicoot”. Tags: Andy Gavin / Crash Bandicoot / Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back / Crash Bandicoot: […]

  50. […] game I played on the Play Station was Crash Bandicoot. There’s a series of blog posts starting here, where Andy Gavin describes how the game was designed, and how they worked around the limitations […]

  51. jorb says:

    Andy, I am working on my own 3D game now and I have a lot of issues with 3D compression. For example, I really need a 3d camerasystem that does not initialise out-of-sight polygons but it is surely very hard to program.

    Is there any chance you could help or send something I can use to understand good 3d camerasystems better? Because I’ve tried for months but nothing flawless comes out – i’d be a great honor.


  52. reed b. says:

    I found this site and your posts on “making crash bandicoot” by accident, but I’m glad I did. I got the original crash games when I was 5 a decade ago, and I’ve loved them ever since. They are and always will be a part of my life (and I think its awesome to be able to talk to the guy who helped make them! :D). I just wish that crash would’ve had a better fate after the guys at naughty dog left him – seeing that only crash’s image, not his fun and replayability, being carried through wrath of cortex and nitro kart, simply as soulless clones of earlier crash games. Thankfully, twinsanity caught my interest, with its new free roaming worlds and liveliness based around the original game’s concept, albeit not the same way old crash did. But I would’ve accepted crash’s end right there if only to save face from radical. Its obvious in their first game (tag team racing) that their influence was very obnoxious, unnecessary, and painful, but they managed to corrupt crash further through his image in the newest games. This pisses me off the most, since radical is simply selling out a staple of my childhood like it’s some new cartoon on nickelodeon (which i hope to god it doesn’t become). I’m hoping, considering the hard work you’ve put into crash in the beginning, that you’ve seen his gradual demise with these new games and that you can agree with me on any of this. Please tell me – is there any hope for crash bandicoot in the future?

  53. reed b. says:

    Yea – To me it seems unlikely that crash, assuming that the image of crash himself survives in the minds of developers and fans, just happens to land in the hands of a more suited develepor than he has been with (post-naughty dog) that will want to revive crash to his original goodness, rather than make a quick buck off him. I say this considering that most of the developers and fans that really care about crash most likely aren’t big, powerful, and wealthy enough (like activision) to get the tech, the team, the ads, and especially the rights to crash himself to make the game. And, unfortunately, I think it’s unlikely that crash will be returned to you and the guys at naughty dog once more, due to activision’s grip on crash’s name, and since you guys are probably more concerned with the uncharted series and future projects with sony (and hopefully wrapping up jak!). It’s obvious the best hope for crash would be for naughty dog to look into it again (although if there’s any chance of them getting him back present, it would be a while) considering it’s one of the few companies that has all the creativity and fun used in the first crash games (since they all made them), and they’re successful enough to have enough leverage in the video game industry to make another game. But, to concur with your statement, as of now I think hope is the only thing for us crash fans to look forward to. I just hope that crash’s fate in the next decade is better than it was in the last, and that you and the naughty dog team can keep an eye on him in the future

  54. Peter says:


  55. Daniel says:

    Hello Andy! I’ve been playing the original Crash Bandicoot series since I was 4 years old! 11 years later and I still keep playing them! They are the best games I have ever played. They also bring back really good memories from the past. Thanks for the good times 🙂

      • Daniel says:

        Ok so I have one question. I am ordering a puzzle from Portraitpuzzles. They let you send in an image and transfer it to a 1000 piece puzzle! I decided that I should do a crash bandicoot image!
        The thing is the image that I would like to use, they wont accept.
        They said they need permission from the owner.

        I contacted Naughty Dog but I haven’t got any response. Can I ask you, or are you no longer with Naughty Dog?

      • agavin says:

        I’m not the owner. You can try and contact Naughty Dog, I’m not sure if they are anymore either, but probably (i.e. Sony, as they own NDI).

  56. Sulia1 says:


    Nice Story about the History of Crash Bandicoot.

  57. Gabriele says:

    By now to me, except for the PSX games, only your posts remain of the old good Crash Bandicoot!
    I Hope that in the future you will write a “Making Crash bandicoot 2/3/CTR” post.
    I don’t know if Activision is making another Crash game but I know that I will love another Crash game from you and Jason ;).

  58. Kaizer Allen says:

    Hey Andy, I saw some of the beta levels the team had created for the first “Crash Bandicoot.” Did they ever got finished? Here they are:
    1) Cliff level

    2) Cavern level

    3) Waterfall level

    *I really am a big fan of Crash ever since I was 5…and until now, I do play the game. Crash 2 is my favorite among the four you have created.*

    P.S. I really wanna know if those levels were finished, but didn’t ship…just like Stormy Ascent. I can’t help but ask you this. I just want to know, I’m a big fan!!

    Thank you so much.
    And thank you for bringing Crash to this world.


    • agavin says:

      Awesome!! I didn’t know there were any videos on the web floating around of those 2 levels. It’s really two, #1 and #3 are the same. #1 was what we called “level1” (jungle) and #2 was what we called “level2” (lava cave). Only the first half of the lava cave seems to be working in that build, it had a bigger cave past that that blew the engine to all hell.

      Both of those levels were failed early levels. We developed them and the gameplay didn’t work. We then retreated and made a few cortex power levels (I detailed this in the gameplay post) and made the gameplay really fun there, and then went back and redid the jungle concept from scratch. But certainly you can see the Crash aesthetic and elements at work. Those early levels suffered from having too many polys, and not enough containment. The player needed containment or he could get himself in trouble. You can also see how even very early in development (those videos are certainly from 1995) Crash looked like Crash.

      • Andrea says:

        Those are not the only videos about this early version of Crash Bandicoot that can be found on YouTube. There are also these:


        Early bonus level:

        It’s also interesting to see that the cavern level is very similar to that cavern from Crash Twinsanity, eh?

        By the way, Andy Gavin, I really would like to ask you this: have you ever seen the concept arts of the canceled “Crash Bandicoot 2010”? If yes, what do you think about them, especially the new Crash’s model (that looks like the Japanese Crash), DingoDile and those little bandicoots?

        – Thank you in advance

      • agavin says:

        Haha. That isn’t a mini game. That’s a recording of “level0” which was my programming test level. I was just testing spiders and the labass. It was always very useful to have a level that was super small (hence I could process it in 3 minutes instead of 6 hours). I’d just stick whatever creatures I was programming there first and do all the programming I could on them BEFORE putting them in a real level.

  59. Kaizer Allen says:

    I mean, here’s the Cliff level:

    Thanks again! 🙂

  60. Eric Wiedeke says:

    Why don’t you talk about Jak and Daxter? and do you support the cliff hanger at the end of the main series and do you really honestly believe *shakes head* the lost frontier was a true sequel?

  61. […] the multi-part version of the story, as posted by Andy Gavin: 1. The ideas 2. Characters 3. The technology 4. Crash gameplay 5. Crates and other items 6. Attending the E3, […]

  62. Tonic N.Gin says:

    I loved all the crash games by naughty dog; and they have, perhaps, had a larger influence on my life than most people can give credit to a game 🙂

    One question: Since giving up the rights to crash, the back stories of many characters has been deepened and edited. One large change is that Cortex has become more of a joke villain, hiding, running away ect. If you had continued to make the games, would Cortex in particular have gone down this route? Also, what is your opinion of this personality change?

  63. […] Bloga  jednego z ojców Crasha Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped Crash Team Racing Tagged as: Crash Bandicoot, PlayStation, Stare gry Leave a comment Comments (0) Trackbacks (0) ( subscribe to comments on this post ) […]

  64. ChaosStar says:

    Which is runs at the highest framerate:

    PAL version of Crash Bandicoot games that you made or NTSC.

    • agavin says:

      NTSC version runs at 30, and the PAL at 25. The resolution is better on the PAL one however, and the frame rate more consistent (because there is slightly more time per frame to compute everything). Overall NTSC is bit easier on the eyes.

      • ChaosStar says:

        Does this mean the NTSC version runs gameplay faster than PAL, or vice versa?

      • agavin says:

        The game was carefully coded so that actions and animation (as best as possible) proceed at the same rate. For example if you hit the jump button and Crash is supposed to be in the air for 1 second, the parabolic arc of his jump is sampled in NTSC such that there are 30 datapoints and in PAL at 25. The jump itself is supposed to take the same amount of time and feel the same. In practice, this works like 95% of the time and there are slight differences with a few creatures or animations, usually just one more or less frames. This results mostly from rounding error in that the duration of 1/30 seconds of some animation has to be rounded off to fit the 1/25 increments.

  65. Karen says:

    Crash Bandicoot was my first videogame that I got when I was 7, and I STILL keep playing it over and over today and it never gets old. The entire game itself is just so fun; it’s funny, it’s entertaining, it’s addicting, and it’s not overly complicated either while still being fairly challenging. This article has been so interesting, and I’m going to continue reading the rest. This is seriously my favorite videogame- so, well, thanks for everything. 🙂

  66. Stephen says:

    Crash Bandicoot is my favorite game! Why the heck did you stop mmaking them?

  67. Ciara says:

    Dude the games of our childhood. Growing up with Crash was and still is fun. To me, knowing that so many people to have had that game deeply impact their childhoods would make me feel like I truly reached the goal. 😀 This is a fun article. I read the whole thing and now re-reading it. This really means a lot to me 🙂

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