It goes without saying that everyone with some form of gaming history has played at least one of the original "Crash Bandicoot" games, just like it's rival "Spyro", these were the best of the best of PlayStation gaming and have proven to be a series that have given us a lifetime of memories, for this entry i will only be writing about the first three games and exclude "Crash Team Racing" and "Crash Bash".
Alot of people adored the first Crash Bandicoot game and so did I, however after playing it fully a few months back I've realized how naive I was, everyone probably remembers using the super cheat code in order to play any level you wanted but did any of you remember how you saved the game for the first Crash game?, well basically you had to find the three boxes labeled "?" that had a token inside it which would take you to in the bonus round, from there you had to complete the bonus round and once completing it you were allowed to save, if you failed the bonus round by dying you wouldn't get another shot at it and have to keep playing through to the end of the level and into the next level to try out that bonus round and cross your fingers hoping you'd be capable of doing it otherwise, yup you wouldn't be able to save and have to play on to the next bonus round hoping you'd do that one.
Apart from the dodgy saving mechanic some of the levels were just poorly designed, for instance those levels set in the native's village there were sections in that where you had to spin at a wooden device to create a ledge, climb on top of it, jump on that one to spin at the device above the one you were on, jump onto that one and repeat all before the devices change, another "fine" example of this was the bridge levels such as "The Road To Nowhere" in these levels you would progress only by moving forward however most of the bridge was missing and required you to jump with extreme precision from the narrow plank of wood you were standing on to another single piece of wood, trust me guys if you remember this you'll now how difficult it was.
Even though I have pointed out this game's major flaws it doesn't mean that it's a terrible game, nay it is actually still very enjoyable -just not as great as I once perceived it to be- with several interesting settings and obstacles this game is still highly enjoyable and challenging (even though some parts are a little too challenging).
Crash Bandicoot 2 may not seem like it now but for it's time it pushed the ps1 to it's hardware limits and capabilities. Out of the three this one is the most unique game with interesting recurring themes such as city ruins, sewers, back-lands and so on that didn't seem like a random mess like the themes for Crash 1, this was also the first game to introduce the crystal concept as the first one only had gems (but it never told you which levels had gems which resulted in you wasting time collecting all the boxes and not being rewarded for your efforts), had an improved save file system and allowed players to repeat bonus levels until they were satisfied. This game was perfectly balanced for all players, in order to complete the game you'd just have to collect crystals and defeat the bosses this is a challenge for kids but easy for experienced players however the challenge for experienced is collecting the gems.
Furthermore this game featured easter eggs for example in one of the sewer based levels there was a split path, if you decided to take one path in particular you would find yourself in a room full of nitrogen boxes (instant death if touched), seems a bit odd doesn't it, however if you go right to the back of the room and avoid all the boxes the wall that is there is like a hologram as you can jump right through it into a secret area. This game had numerous hidden areas that even teleported you to another part of a different level making every level blend into each other as the majority of them linked up nicely.
For many of you out there Crash 3 was your favorite however the themes for this game, Egypt, Medieval times, Persia and so on have all been a little overplayed in games to the point it can be considered a cliche however the layouts of these levels and the obstructions they present are far from cliche, the idea's and problems the game presents to us in the form of a challenge is highly creative and very enjoyable as it has the right balance, it is not too hard that it is frustrating but not too easy that it is considered boring, it is challenging and like Crash 2 it can be played by any level of experience a player possesses, crystals for children, gems for experienced players and a new collectable which is the relic, a time attack mode that is aimed at children for the first few levels and slowly gets harder as it is aimed at the experienced players.