A curious package arrived at my doorstep last week. It was a small orange box with a message from a certain Bandicoot, clearly teasing a new Crash Bandicoot game. That box contained a 200-piece puzzle with no indication of the image it might show. So I set out first clearing a space on my table (thanks Crash, for forcing me to finally get some cleaning done), and then working to put the puzzle together. I grew up doing crazy puzzles with my family—2000 pieces, edgeless, extra pieces, etc.—so a 200 piece puzzle wasn’t too tough. The hardest part was not even knowing what it was ultimately supposed to look like. And when it was finished? I was still a bit confused. Take a look at below:
The box very clearly emphasizes the word “TIME,” and the theme is repeated throughout the image. What we see is something that appears to be a new mask character; perhaps a futuristic one analogous to Aku Aku and Uka Uka. This mask is heavily time-themed, with the solar/lunar phase chart on the headpiece, clock hands sticking out of the top, and hourglass earrings dangling from the side. Is this character a hero? Villain? Something in between? It’s clear the theme of “time” will play a central role, as will this mask in some fashion, but beyond that, there’s not a whole lot we can derive from the image.
Some more shots of the details on the new time villain’s (hero’s?) head.
-Hourglass earrings pic.twitter.com/8KUWWTwpvz
— Chandler #BlackLivesMatter (@FinchStrife) June 18, 2020
This wouldn’t be the first Crash Bandicoot game to play around with time. Previous Crash games have sent the orange marsupial and his blue board shorts into all sorts of different eras, from the age of the dinosaurs to futuristic cities. While it’s not yet known which studio is working on this new project, Vicarious Visions—developer behind the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy—did add some original levels to that remake. At the time, I noted that the added levels felt like a proof of concept, showing that the studio could develop its own original Crash Bandicoot game. That was two years ago now, so a reveal of an original all-new Crash Bandicoot game very soon doesn’t seem so far-fetched.
In fact, recent merch leaks seem to also point to an impending reveal. With the enormous success of Activision’s remasters of the classic platformer, it’s not surprising that the company would want to once again try its hand at recapturing the magic of classic Crash Bandicoot with a brand-new game. Just when exactly we’ll find out about this upcoming game is unknown, as are a variety of other details like release date or even what platforms it might come to. It’s almost certainly going to release on the current generation of consoles, but is a PS5 and Xbox Series X version in the cards? Only “time” will tell.