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Crash Bandicoot - Unused 2D Animation


During an early phase of Crash Bandicoot's development, Universal commissioned traditionally animated cutscenes to be used in the game. Like all of Universal's animation at the time, they were done by a Korean studio called Akom. They produced an intro and ending for the game:

The singing narration was done by Jim Cummings, who was a prominent voice actor in many 1990s cartoon shows. As for why the animation went unused, the producer of the game, Dave Siller, explains:

It was based on ideas for where we were going with this IP at that time. It was probably too ambitious in nature and was also trying to be humorous. It was never used or even embedded in the game as a hidden "easter egg" treat.

Once UIS licensed the game to Sony for publication, Sony did not want it utilized since they were heavily pushing the "3D" agenda.

The sub-par quality of the animation also led the presidents of Naughty Dog, Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin, to immediately veto it, and that's why it was never put into the game. In fact, these scenes remained hidden away from the public eye for 19 years, until David Siller unearthed them on July 2015. According to him, the animation was also "a somewhat prototype to further flesh out ideas for a possible cartoon series". Sadly, a Crash Bandicoot cartoon was never meant to be.

The introduction cutscene shows almost every character in the game, including Tiny Tiger and the Komodo Brothers, who were originally designed by Joe Pearson for this game, only to be pushed to the sequel during development (this also explains why the Komodos have slightly different designs and outfits). Papu Papu is the hardest one to spot, but you can see him in the background at roughly 0:35, as Crash waddles through the grass. The only character notably absent is Aku Aku, but it's difficult to say whether he was considered a proper character at this point, or even finalized to begin with.

The initial background with the islands was based off concept art for the game, as were many of the characters' animated frames. Tawna is seen with her original colors (which were switched pretty late in development), though her intended brown fur appears much brighter here, probably due to one of several animation errors throughout the whole thing.


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