Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex - Airship Level


Introduction

Introduction

The game contains an unused level where Crash has to use his Glider to take on a huge airship. This same airship can be seen in a pre-release screenshot, and there is evidence that the level was worked on after the screenshot was taken. Here is that level in a comparison between what's left of it and what was there before the game was released.

It's important to mention that the size ratio differs between the two screenshots, so even though the airship looks wider on the pre-release image, it's actually the same size.

You can also notice how many textures have been added and redone to the leftover version. There is even a code painted in blue and the addition of one of Cortex's trademark 'N's on the bottom cannon. That alone is evidence that they were working on this level even after the screenshot on the right was released.


Targets
Targets
Targets

Targets

One thing you'll be able to tell from these is that Crash is piloting the Crash Glider from Tornado Alley. Or... is he? Take a closer look and you'll be able to spot the same lock-on crosshair you'd get with the Firefly in That Sinking Feeling. Before the Firefly was made, the Crash Glider was used for the lock-on effect (actually coded in the game as a separate object). Incidentally, this variation of the Glider was also used in That Sinking Feeling at first.

The turrets and propellers you can see in the pre-release screenshot may be gone, but they're still placeable with the game's editor, and the target spots on the airship still behave properly. The targets themselves are the turrets (not the propellers), which were meant to shoot down Crash. There are 12 turrets in the airship.


Alternate Views
Alternate Views
Alternate Views

Alternate Views

Here are some screenshots taken with the editor to show a bit more of the airship. LXShadow placed one of the turrets (named "BIGGUN" in the game code) in the second screenshot, because it fits perfectly.


Weathering Heights Connection
Weathering Heights Connection
Weathering Heights Connection
Weathering Heights Connection

Weathering Heights Connection

If you've played the game, you might remember the level Weathering Heights, which takes place inside - you've guessed it - an airship. It appears to be this very same airship, as demonstrated in the screenshots.

Note that the latter 3 screenshots show what the level is like from the outside. Weathering Heights itself is not built in the airship from the removed flight level, because that would have been impractical from a technical standpoint. The level is instead designed this way for gameplay purposes, which isn't noticeable when you play the game, as you spend all your time inside those "floating" chunks. But it is pretty clear that it's supposed to be the same airship, especially since it uses the same kind of propellers and textures.

This is further evidence of The Wrath of Cortex's initial plans for a more fleshed out story and level connections. When you visit Weathering Heights, you may notice from the window that the airship's exterior is on fire. This was planned as a consequence of Crash's doing with the Glider, and he would probably shoot down the turrets so he could safely land on the airship and go inside.


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