- Species: Spirit
- Gender: Male
- Alignment: Good
Aku Aku is an ancient benevolent witch doctor. He is no longer a "living" being in flesh, so to speak, but his spirit communicates and acts through the aid of a special mask. He helps and instructs Crash Bandicoot whenever the world needs to be saved.
Because of his mystical powers and wisdom, Aku Aku is a valuable ally. He is kind, caring, and helpful, and his age-old experience has given him a strong sense of intuition. Aku Aku is usually seen with Crash and his sister Coco, to whom he plays a sort of fatherly role. He has an evil twin brother named Uka Uka, who usually opposes him and tries to take over the world with the help of Dr. Neo Cortex.
Note: His name is sometimes misspelled as "Aku-Aku", with a dash.
- Thanks to Smaz for the picture.
In Crash of the Titans and Mind Over Mutant, Aku Aku's voice and shape are considerably different, and though his role as the wise fatherly figure is kept, he is usually portrayed as more humorous than usual, either due to his dialog or because of the circumstances.
- Aku Aku was originally designed as a genie, and later evolved into a mouse-like fairy. He was then redesigned as a witch doctor wearing a mask, but ultimately made it to the games as just the mask itself.
- His name may come from Easter Island's expression "Aku-Aku", meaning "spiritual guide" (a description that fits him to a T).
- Though Crash Tag Team Racing is the only major game where Aku Aku doesn't appear, there are animatronics using his likeness in the track Tiki Turbo.
Crash Bandicoot, Crash 2, Crash 3
The original design. In the Japanese versions of Crash 2 and 3, a more detailed 3D model is used for the exclusive hints you hear when you find an Aku Aku mask (see Crash Team Racing below). An even more elaborate model is used in the third game's cutscenes (see Crash 3 Cutscenes below).
Crash 3 Cutscenes
The basic design is kept, but Aku Aku has a lot more polygons and detail added to him. He talks and is fully animated from here on out, as opposed to being silent and his face mostly comprised of a texture. His eyebrows, nose, and lips are all varying shades of brown now.
Crash Team Racing
This model was actually first built used in the Japanese versions of Crash 2 and 3, where it appears when you find one of the witch doctor's masks, prompting a hint from him to the player. It retains the same role in Crash Team Racing at certain points in Adventure Mode. Due to the overwhelming amount of spoken lines in these hints, this model uses generic animations without proper lip syncing. The enormous eyebrows can be attributed to the Japanese design.
Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex
Aku Aku now has 7 feathers instead of the usual 4. The wood uses more realistic textures and is dented on top. His eyes are rounder and separate from his eyebrows, his nose is larger and more human-like, his lips are thinner and light brown, and his goatee is spikier.
Crash Nitro Kart, Purple
Aku Aku has reverted to his classic design, albeit with more solid colors. His eyebrows, nose, and lips are more red than usual.
Thanks to Crasharki for the picture.
Besides a larger goatee, differently-colored feathers, and the return of the more human-like nose, Aku Aku remains largely identical.
Crash of the Titans, Mind Over Mutant
Aku Aku was given a full redesign. He is bigger, wider, similar to a big ape. He has 5 feathers instead of 4 (with a different color order), green ribbon-like leaves on his sides, and a large, brown beard.
Aku Aku has returned to his classic design with a few changes. Besides the much higher detail than ever before, he has 5 feathers instead of 4, he is wider, his lips are wider than the rest of his face, his eyebrows have white dots painted on them, and his goatee is made of small leaves.
Thanks to Smaz for the picture.
Other 3D Models
Crash: Boom, Bang!
CBNK 3D, CBNK 2