Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex was developed by Traveller's Tales and released in 2001 for the PS2 and 2002 for the Xbox and Gamecube. It's the last Crash game to follow the classic formula of warp rooms, crystals, gems, relics etc and the first game in the main series (ignoring Eurocom's party game Crash Bash) not to be developed by Naughty Dog. Like Crash 1-3 the focus is less on simply clearing every level, but going for 105% completion, a feat that requires nothing short of game mastery. The plot is pretty much copy-pasted from Crash 3, an ancient evil is released to aid Dr Neo Cortex in a dastardly scheme and only a vast assortment of precious stones can stop them. This marks the debut (and indeed, only appearance) of many types of gimmick level, including the atlasphere and helipack as well as bringing in Coco as a fully playable character in some levels, rather than leaving her with various vehicles.
This is going to be a 105% run. This will not be easy since some of the later collectibles are absolute bitches to get. However I did it when I was 14, so I at least know I can do it. The plan is to have at least one video a week, each one covering a world and the occasional backtracking/collecting video.
As a kid I played the Xbox version, but this is going to be the PS2 version. There are no real gameplay changes beside the PS2's analog sticks being far inferior to the Xbox's.
But NJ, What About Crash 1-3?
Glad you asked, Envisioned did a great megathread covering those games which is archived here!
Relics: 30/30 (1 Sapphire (argh!), 16 Gold, 13 Platinum)
The uncut version of me time trialling Gold Rush, not for the faint hearted
The main marsupial, Crash is the result of one of Cortex's experiments gone wrong (yes really) and as a result seeks to thwart the bad doctor at every turn. He's our main character and in accordance with videogame law, the least interesting thing in the game despite being a pretty cool guy.
(actually a more recent look, but it fits her in this game)
Crash's sister and chief technical girl. Rides a jetski, has a pet tiger, kicks ass on a scooter, snowboards, hacked into Cortex's Time Twister in Crash 3, built the entire damn warp room in this game. Is beyond cool and awesome but dear god don't google her. Is also voiced by the same woman who voiced Jimmy Neutron, which I think is cool.
Crash and Coco's mask guardian. Upholder of all that is right and good, he appears in levels to provide protection against enemies.
Dr. Neo Cortex
Crash's creator and nemesis, a bumbling genius skilled in the creation of mutant animal superweapons. Despite his name being in the manual for every Crash game, Wrath of Cortex is the first time he's mentioned by his first name in the actual game.
Aku-Aku's evil brother, the mask who pulls Cortex's strings and facilitates evil thanks to his ancient sealed mask rolodex.
Cortex's latest mutant animal creation. A roided, jacked up bandicoot with bad taste in trousers who could probably beat Crash's ass day after day in a fair fight. However he uses the Elementals to gain the advantage, so naturally finds himself on the receiving end of Crash's various vehicles.
A crew of 4 masks representing the ancient elements of fire, wind, earth and water. Sealed away because of their past destruction they're released by Uka-Uka to provide the power Cortex needs to bring Crunch to life. The fire mask Py-Ro is voiced by Mark Hamill, which is odd. Even odder is that Lo-Lo the wind mask is voiced by Jess Hamell, who previously voiced Crash's main platform rival Spyro.