Taking on board some Crash 4 tips can be helpful for all, whether you're a marsupial veteran or a bandicoot beginner, because a lot has changed in Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time. We're not exaggerating when we say it's the toughest Crash game out there, with fresh gameplay mechanics to master and plenty of difficulty spikes to contend with as you progress. That's why we're here to help with this set of pointers, from deciding between Modern or Classic mode to how much Big Wumpa Fruit are worth, so take a read through the Crash 4 tips below to significantly improve your odds of platforming success.
1. It's not a race, so proceed cautiously to earn as many gems as possible
Each level can reward you with a maximum of six gems upon completion; three for the amount of Wumpa Fruit collected, one for dying three times or less, one for finding all the crates, and one for grabbing the hidden gem. Even if you don't find the Crash 4 hidden gems, you can easily grab five of the six gems in each level by proceeding with a lot of caution and planning every jump and spin.
2. Big Wumpa Fruit are worth 25 in total
See those massive, shiny Wumpa Fruit? They're new to Crash 4 and you'll want to grab them, as they're worth 25 Wumpa each. They will go a long way towards earning those three gems mentioned above, so do your best to pick 'em up.
3. Three Aku-Aku masks will make you invincible
This one is a trick that has persisted from the original trilogy of games, but it's important to remember here too; if you collect three Aku-Aku masks without being hit, you'll become invincible. This power lasts for only a short amount of time but it means you can sprint through anything standing in your way at a faster pace. Even when it runs out, you'll keep stage two, so all you need to do is grab another mask to become invincible again.
4. Crash 4 is tough, so play on Modern for your first playthrough
Right when the game starts, you'll be asked if you want to play on Modern or Classic. The Crash veterans reading this will be tempted to go for Classic – game over when you run out of lives, gain more by collecting Wumpa Fruit – but we have to stress that Crash 4 is tougher than previous games in the series. For your first playthrough, you'll be better off playing on Modern, until you've got to grips with the game, because you're not limited to lives and will reset at checkpoints every time.
5. Bonus level deaths don't count towards the main level total, but crates do
Every main level has a bonus level, indicated by a raised platform with a question mark atop about halfway through. Hop on and you'll be whisked away to a bonus level with a smaller number of crates to collect. If you die on this level, don't worry; it doesn't count towards your number of deaths for the level so you can still earn the gem. The crates, however, do count. Make sure you complete each bonus level if you want to smash all the crates on the level as a whole!
6. Slide before double jumping to ascend even higher than normal
This is a classic Crash move, but newbies to the series may not be aware that if you slide then instantly go into a double jump, you'll climb slightly higher than you would with a standard double jump. This will allow you to reach those pesky boxes that otherwise seem out of your reach.
7. Try your hardest not to die at all until you collect the Flashback Tape on most levels
There are 21 Crash 4 Flashback Tapes in total throughout the game, so while not every story level has one, most do. They're unlocked by not racking up a single death until you reach them, which as you'll find later in the game, becomes quite difficult. So while you can die a maximum of three times for the gem at the end, getting the Flashback Tape requires a perfect run until you find it.
8. Time Trial mode can't be turned off, so you'll need to restart the level
There's not much more to this unfortunately. Time Trial mode is unlocked in each level when you complete it for the first time, allowing yoiu to go back through and replace boxes with special yellow ones that take precious seconds off your time. It's easy to accidentally collect the golden clock without meaning to though, so if that happens, you need to pause the game and restart.
9. N. Verted mode flips everything, except for Hidden Gems which are in new locations
When you unlock Crash 4 N. Verted mode, it's going to confuse you at first. Vision is limited, everything is mirrored, and the altered audio is nightmare inducing. Everything is pretty much the same though; enemies are in the same spots, as are crates, it's just mirrored. Except for the Crash 4 N. Verted hidden gems, as you'll need to hunt for them all a second time, because they're not in the original locations. Good luck!