Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back - Charles Zembillas


The following art and commentary was posted by Charles Zembillas on his blog. Charles was one of the main artists for the game and provided many of the original designs and ideas for the series. Check out Charles's blog for more art and development history, including not just Crash Bandicoot but also many other projects, such as Jak & Daxter.
Coco Bandicoot Origin 1
Coco Bandicoot Origin 1

Coco Bandicoot Origin 1

I'm sure the Crash fans out there will be excited about this. Did some digging around today and guess what... Found artwork from the creation of Crash's sister Coco Bandicoot! There's a few drawings of her. Most of them are photocopies of the original art which Naughty Dog has in their possession as far as I know unless they gave them away to Sony executives as a present. They did that quite a bit with original development art. They'd frame the drawings and gave them away as presents to executives.

Coco was created as a counter balance to Tawna who was Bandicoot's girlfriend. She came along because ND was sensitive to Sony Japan and wanted to please them. Sony Japan didn't feel comfortable with a super sexy character with Crash so ND went with a sister character instead to appease them.

So here she is on the day of her birth. These are the first few sketches. This is where she started from. There's more and I'll be posting those in a later entry. I wrote down the date on these pages when I drew them. March 18, 1997. I was developing Crash 2 at the time.


Coco Bandicoot Origin 2
Coco Bandicoot Origin 2
Coco Bandicoot Origin 2
Coco Bandicoot Origin 2

Coco Bandicoot Origin 2

Here's a few more concept drawings from the origin of Crash Bandicoot's sister Coco. These also date from March 18, 1997 and there's still more from this sitting. Looking back it appears I was able to visually define her right from the beginning on the first day of working on the character. Her clothing changed but the design essence is evident early on from her inception. Not sure what order these were done in but it's pretty darn close chronologically.


Coco Bandicoot Origin 3
Coco Bandicoot Origin 3
Coco Bandicoot Origin 3

Coco Bandicoot Origin 3

These three sketches were also created at my first pass for the character on March 18, 1997. There are more drawings of Coco from later sittings. I'm pretty sure this rounds out the first phase of her initial design from that date.


Coco Bandicoot Rotation
Coco Bandicoot Rotation
Coco Bandicoot Rotation
Coco Bandicoot Rotation

Coco Bandicoot Rotation

These drawings are from April 8, 1997. After my initial pass on the character I began to refine her final design with a model rotation.


Coco Bandicoot Final Design
Coco Bandicoot Final Design
Coco Bandicoot Final Design
Coco Bandicoot Final Design
Coco Bandicoot Final Design
Coco Bandicoot Final Design

Coco Bandicoot Final Design

Here are a few more sketches from the development of Crash's little sister Coco Bandicoot. The drawings are dated May 6 1997. It was my third session working on Coco's design and personality. She still did not have a name at this point but she had a nice look and she had character. You can see how her final appearance was really taking form.


Polar Bears
Polar Bears
Polar Bears
Polar Bears
Polar Bears
Polar Bears
Polar Bears

Polar Bears

Something else for the Crash fans and historians. These are concept drawings I created on March 28, 1997 for the development of Crash 2. Polar bear designs intended as part of the game play. A baby polar bear and its mother. I'm sure you recognize this. I didn't get into exploration of the look too much as they were incidental characters and not something major to the project. Kept it simple and direct. Still they're part of the legacy of Crash so here ya go!


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