Crash Bandicoot: Mind Over Mutant review

Genetically engineered for average entertainment

GamesRadar+ Verdict


  • +

    Child-pleasing fun

  • +

    Lavish effects

  • +

    solid frame rate

  • +

    Lots to do


  • -

    Annoying music

  • -

    Controls aren't perfect

  • -

    Restrictive camera

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Last time we saw him, in Crash of the Titans, Crash Bandicoot was a brainless chump, lacking both charisma and charm. The game wasn’t much better either. But things are definitely better for both parties this time around. Everything here says ‘Saturday morning’, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Judging by the fully animated cartoon cutscenes, fast-talking bad guys and pop-culture references, that’s exactly what the game intended to mimic and it’s done it well. Fans of the PS1 original haven’t been left out either, with several in-jokes and cameos to keep everyone happy. But seeing as they’re likely in their late twenties now, this definitely isn’t aimed at them.

The graphics are superb, with huge draw distances, detailed environments and lavish special effects. The water and reflective ice are particularly snazzy and the frame rate never lets up. You can tell Mario Galaxy was an inspiration for the design team. There’s surfing on icy water, spin jumping for extra height… you can even use the remote as a pointer to collect Star Bits. Yep, this game really wants to be Mario Galaxy. But that’s not going to happen. For every applause-worthy moment there are too many annoyances. The jumping mechanic feels woolly, ledge-grabbing is finicky, fighting is simplistic and you’re often left wondering where you’re supposed to go next. While we’re at it, we’re not too sure about the ‘violence solves everything’ attitude either.

It’s unquestionably well designed, with loads of hidden bonuses for those who master the controls and the abilities of the Titans. But then there’s the fixed camera which, while faithful to the original, is far too restrictive when the environments are so big and items are hidden everywhere. Mind Over Mutant is a lot better than Crash of the Titans and the world is probably a slightly better place for its existence. But it’s not quite slick enough underneath all those pretty visuals to earn essential status.

Oct 31, 2008

More info

DescriptionEntry number 15 (!) in the Crash Bandicoot series assaults players with a complete lack of challenge, humor or fun.
Franchise nameCrash Bandicoot
UK franchise nameCrash Bandicoot
Platform"DS","Wii","PSP","PS2","Xbox 360"
US censor rating"Everyone 10+","Everyone 10+","Everyone 10+","Everyone 10+","Everyone 10+"
UK censor rating"7+","7+","7+","7+","7+"
Release date1 January 1970 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)
Justin Towell

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.