The Final Update

Crash Bandicoot has always been a rollercoaster of excitement marked by change. We've seen this series grow and become various different things over the years. In a way, it reminds us that change is a constant in life, and even though it's not always easy, doing our best to adapt is something we owe to ourselves.

This article is being posted on a special date, as it's Crash Mania's 16th anniversary. While I've personally come to pay less and less attention to this kind of milestones, I think it says a lot about the site, its readers, and the love put into it. It's a long time when you really think about it. In fact, I'm sure a few of my readers weren't even been born when I rolled out the first update. It's not enough to make me feel old, but I find the thought quite amusing nonetheless.

I never expected to be updating the site for anywhere as long as I have, but a deep fondness for the source material and a lot of cool experiences and friendships didn't just make it possible — they made it fun. I've always enjoyed discussing the ups and downs, the thrills and chills, and everything in-between that's made my passion for it burn so strongly.

Today, the bandicoot is back on track, thanks to a more than successful revival, and there are fans ready to discuss and document it wherever you look. It all makes today's decision just a little bit less difficult, but like I said, change is something that comes with time... and now is the time for me to move on to different things.

The decision to end Crash Mania wasn't simple. Even when I finally set my mind to it, I literally couldn't sleep, because I kept thinking about all the readers I would inevitably disappoint. I don't feel any different about that now, but it's something I have to accept if I ever want to dedicate myself to the goals that have been on my mind for years.

More than simply feeling burned out, there are other projects that I want to do and new skills that I want to acquire. I've had a desire to start a web comic for gosh knows how long, and lately, I've been rediscovering how much art truly means to me, and how much I really want to get good at it. Things might have been different if I had more time, but as it is, something has to give. I'd rather that something be Crash Mania, as updating the site is no longer as exciting for me as it used to be, and I don't want that to be reflected on the content, or there is no point to it anymore.

At first, I tried my best to consolidate all of this and keep the site going. I even created a completely new design to see if it kept my energy going, but there came a point where every time I sat down to do more work on the site, all I could think of was how much I'd rather be spending my creativity on something else and trying new things, which is never a good sign for any ongoing project. I ended up doing some soul-searching, meeting new people, diving into other things that speak to me, and taking my mind off the site for a good while. In the end, I never felt ready to return, and there was only one conclusion I kept reaching, no matter how I tried to approach things — I had to move on.

And don't get me wrong — I don't regret the time I spent here, but I also feel like there is so much more that I must do. Thinking about it, a better cut-off point would have been during the franchise's hiatus, as I've struggled to keep the site up to date in recent times. The only things that kept me going in these past couple of years were reader feedback and heartwarming stories, which I'm eternally grateful for. But not being able to pick up the pace isn't just frustrating for me. My readers shouldn't have to keep waiting for something that takes a long time to show up or doesn't show up at all. I think that put the writing on the wall, to the point where I'm not sure this decision is all that surprising to some.

I've heard that I should try to get more help with the site, though I think this would be a terrible experience for anyone I brought on board. There are much better tools and workflows for team-based fan sites than my own (I mean, even I don't like to use the tools I created), and while subjecting other people to the horrors I've coded would be kind of amusing for a moment, I'd never feel comfortable giving them something inadequate to work with, which is a struggle I know all too well, both professionally and otherwise. What may have been tolerable for me would most certainly feel like a chore to others, and that's just not worth it. Besides, one of the reasons Crash Mania became so big was because there weren't really any alternatives or large fan movements back in the day. This is no longer the case, and trying to turn the site into something else would be pointless and redundant.

Naturally, Crash Mania is going to remain online. The site may be done, but it's not going anywhere, so no worries on that front! And of course, just because I'm done writing about Crash doesn't mean I don't like the series anymore. I'm just going with a more relaxed approach from now on, watching new announcements from the sidelines and occasionally discussing the games with friends. The bandicoot and I go way back, and I'm going to keep following him on his journey, even if mine is going a separate way.

Life goes on, but I firmly believe that the memories, impact, and influence I was able to provide through this site won't be easily forgotten, and I think that's all I could really ask for. That, to me, is the ultimate goal of any creative project, whether it's a fan-made encyclopedia dedicated to a video-game franchise or something else entirely. You just have to find your flaming passion and turn your vision into a reality. I can say with confidence and gratitude that I was able to accomplish that, and now... I want to start over and do something like that again.

So here it is, my final message in this place that was such a large part of my life:

To everyone who visited...

To everyone who sent me material, spotted my mistakes, and gave me new content for every fan to appreciate...

To everyone who pledged donations and helped me stay on track...

To everyone who volunteered to translate the site for new audiences...

To everyone who helped more fans find this place...

And to everyone who shared their stories about how this project was able to make their day a little better...

I just want to say, from the bottom of my heart:

Thank you for 16 N. Credible years!

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