VU Games attempts Crash/Spyro crossover
A nice idea if nothing else.
Vivendi-Universal Games is hoping to breathe new life into its Crash and Spyro handheld franchises by attempting a series crossover. In an interesting move, forthcoming GBA titles Crash Bandicoot Purple: Ripto's Rampage and Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy (Crash Bandicoot: Fusion and Spyro: Fusion here in Europe) will be able to link up to unlock more content - much like the handheld Pokémon or Mega Man Battle Network series titles.
However to my mind this is the first (or at least first high profile) instance of two entirely separate franchises converging in order to try and buoy one another, and it's a curious novelty we'll probably see aped by other titles before too long.
Although the mechanics of the interaction have yet to be revealed, VU Games has confirmed that both titles are being developed by Vicarious Visions (who handled the previous GBA Crash titles), both will be side-scrolling, both will offer multiplayer modes for up to four people, and both will be out in Q2 2004.
From a narrative point of view (clearly significant when dealing with an orange bandicoot and a purple dragon), the idea is that when respective bad guys Cortex and Ripto meet in an underground portal they decide to pool their talents and rid the world of Crash and Spyro once and for all (a pretty noble goal, no?). Thanks to this unholy union we can expect to see both games populated with enemies alternately familiar to fans, and we'll also allegedly get to see the heroic duo team up from time to time on the same platform.
Regardless of how the two titles end up, there are probably quite a few publishers of handheld titles scratching their heads and pondering possibilities in their own IP vaults. How long, we wonder, before Mario and Sonic unite against the tubby tyrants Robotnik and Bowser? Perhaps not - but we doubt this is the last time we'll see something like this attempted on the GBA.