Crash: Mind Over Mutant brings Crash Bandicoot back to the battle against Cortex and his low-rent minions. While I haven't played the last Crash (Crash of the Titans), all the media looks the same, suggesting little has evolved. Then again, Crash doesn't do anything Mario hasn't already covered. Basically, Crash has to protect Wumpa Village (Mushroom Kingdom) from the evil Dr. Cortex (Bowser). Crash disposes of a host of generic minions (goombas and koopas), gains power-ups (fire flower) and collects orbs (coins). Occasionally, he'll fight a boss battle (koopa kids). I know, Crash is different: he rides mutants. This is the main difference that sets him apart from other platform heroes. You can hop on the big monsters in the game and use their unique talents to advance in the level or simply waste other enemies. These mutants, as well as Crash, can gain levels while collecting orbs. The more orbs you collect while using the fire monster, the more strength upgrades you get. These monsters can die, but experience is applied to the type of monster, so no worries. When playing Crash, smacking minions around can greatly increase your multiplier, up to 20x. This means all your orbs give you more experience, very useful at higher levels. Each upgrade gives Crash a nice bonus to spin strength, health punching power, etc. But if you get hit just once, you lose your multiplier and have to start again. There are technical flaws with jumping and ridge climbing which comes with the control scheme. Some of the monsters have wonky controls or slow attacks, making them hinder rather than help. The cartoon cutscenes are clever, but far too long. And there's significant backtracking. Crash should be respected for surviving in a genre full of icons. But he doesn't have enough of an identity to truly stand out. You'll like Crash, but you won't love him.
I really enjoyed the previous Crash game however this one plays the same except the levels are little harder to get through. Now that Naughty Dog is no longer developing Crash....well the games are not as good.
I would rent this game but I would only buy it if it was going for less than $20.00