The designers of Crash Bandicoot obviously think that there's someone out there who desperately wants to be a tiny creature with a grin so punchably smug that it makes mince-haired motoring pundit Jeremy Clarkson seem almost bearable. People play videogames for the element of escapism - controlling a sinister secret agent or a warrior from the Wilderness of Death - but who wants to be a fuzzy little irritant?
But we digress. Even if Crash Bandicoot is deeply unlikeable (and we think he is) it doesn't mean his games are a load of old toss, right? Well, that depends on what type of gamer you are. Twinsanity is desperately simple platforming at its most fundamental, elevated only by its heritage and visual aptitude. The awful on rails gameplay has gone, but its pseudo-free-roaming replacement doesn't fare much better. If you're content with mournful vanilla platforming that tests neither brain nor thumb to any great degree, Twinsanity should rock your tiny, clueless world. Otherwise, get your paws on something like Jak and Daxter for a dose of proper platforming.
The game is visually very accomplished. The environments are vast and detailed, although unseemly invisible borders and walls often prevent you from achieving true freedom. Meanwhile interesting spot details like flocks of seagulls, fish being thrown from spurting geysers and fluttering chickens bring the levels to life and give the whole package a disarming sense of polish. Get down to the gameplay's bare bones, however, and you'll find a lacklustre platformer with terrible collision detection and mundane, joyless tasks posing unsuccessfully as 'missions'. And before you ask, the Peter Andre-style Twinsanity monicker is there to describe the 'madcap' table-turner that is Crash's partnership with former arch-nemesis Dr Neo Cortex. You can use him as a weapon in the same style as Whiplash, and there's all manner of 'hilarious' fun to be had. Just not by us, thanks.
Crash Twinsanity is out now for PS2 and Xbox