A special set of gems hidden across the Earth. They have the ability of harnessing planetary energy. Most gems are clear in appearance, but there is a particular sub-set of colored ones with unique shapes and purposes, usually revealing hidden locations.
Like crystals, gems possess vast amounts of energy, and they often act as Crash Bandicoot's trump card for ruining Cortex's schemes. It's not uncommon for Crash to collect them simply for the sake of not letting them fall into the wrong hands.
These jewels' number and purpose vary wildly between games:
- In platform games up to N-Tranced and the Nintendo DS version of Crash of the Titans, clear gems are acquired by breaking all of the crates in a level.
- In the first game, gems additionally require that you don't lose a life before completing the level, as checkpoints in this game don't keep track of the crates you've broken.
- The first game also has a unique pair of colored gems that don't appear in any other game: an orange one and a pink one.
- From Crash Bandicoot 2 onward, colored gems usually come in 5 different colours: blue, red, green, yellow and purple. They are often hidden or found by performing unusual tasks.
- Up to Crash Bandicoot Purple, getting all the gems unlocks an alternate ending, usually preceded by a rethread of the final boss fight.
- In Crash Team Racing, colored gems are your reward for beating cups in Adventure Mode. They're all shaped like regular, clear gems. The same happens in Crash Nitro Kart, but the yellow gem is absent as there are only four cups.
- There are green gems in Crash Bash for every mini-game. They're acquired by winning a more difficult version of a mini-game.
- In Crash Bandicoot Purple, clear gems can be acquired by completing Bonus Rounds or breaking all the crates in mini-games that contain them.
- In Crash Twinsanity, there are 6 gems in each level, each of a different color. They're usually hidden in secret places, though many of them are just lying on the main path. This is the first game where gathering gems is completely optional and has no relation the plot, serving only to unlock bonus features like concept art.
- Crash Tag Team Racing features a unique set of so-called Power Gems. Each one powers up an area in Motorworld.
- In the Nintendo DS version of Crash of the Titans, a gem is awarded when you complete any of the following tasks in a level: break all the Crates, find all the Tiki Masks, get the Mojo goal, or complete an event unique to that level.
- In the Game Boy Advance version of Crash of the Titans, gems are given little to no importance and they are much more abundant than before, serving as common, endless currency for Tiki Vending Machines. They disappear if you don't pick them up quickly enough.
Gems are called Diamonds in Japan.