Crash Bandicoot: On the Run!, the new endless runner-style game from King, the creators of Candy Crush Saga, is truly a Crash Bandicoot lover’s dream! Crash and Coco are back, but this time, they must take care of villains from all areas of the Crash multiverse thanks to Dr. Neo Cortex!
With so many enemies from different games as of the release of this article in mid-2021, it can be hard to keep them all straight and remember the slight differences in their attacks. Let this guide help you as jump, spin, and of course, run your way through jungles, snowy peaks, and ruins to defeat the evil Cortex and his army of minions!
Crash Bandicoot: On the Run!’s main game stages consist of four levels with a common enemy at the end, and one level with a mini-boss at the end. All enemies and mini-bosses typically take one of four forms: Nitro, Frosty, Inferno, or Oxide. These characters are a mix of enemies that Crash encountered from previous games, and, in some cases, a few making their first debut in the Crash Bandicoot franchise.
The Araknid is a new enemy in the Crash Bandicoot series. This mini-boss is a little unique in that it has two forms of attack. The Araknid rolls giant balls at the player while also summoning one or two spiders to halt your progress. Avoid all obstacles until you reach Araknid, at which you’ll automatically enter the tossing scenario. Time yourself to stop the moving pointer in the middle to get the best results, which grants the most EXP to you.
The iconic Crab: one of the first enemies you encounter in the first Crash Bandicoot game. Having now made an appearance in ten installments of the series, it would be wrong to leave the Crab out of Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! Like all mini-bosses, you just need to dodge the Crab’s rolling projectiles, in this case, large rocks, to reach him and initiate the chemical-tossing scene!
The Mutagen Ant is a redesign of the Ant Drone. The pesky Ant Drone first appeared in the 2004 release, Crash Twinsanity, which was developed by Traveller’s Tales Oxford Studio. This insect tosses dangerous sludge-coated bouncing projectiles are you, and you’ll need to dodge it by either switching lanes, or jumping over them. Avoid them all to reach the Mutagen Ant and shower it with Coco’s chemicals!
The Pink Elephant, a new enemy to the Crash Bandicoot franchise, isn’t 100% new. This enemy was originally supposed to appear in 2004’s Crash Twinsanity, but for some reason wasn’t a part of the final game. His attack is to create a wall of stone blocks in front of the player. Some stones will disappear as the player draws closer, but the remaining stones must be dodged in a similar way to other mini-bosses. With its thick eyebrows and beret, we think the Pink Elephant is one of the best character designs in the game!
The Mini Robots of Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! are new to the Crash Bandicoot franchise. These vicious two-legged robots shoot missiles that the player must dodge. They happen to be based on the Missile Robot enemy from Crash Bandicoot: Warped.
The Lab Assistant is one of the more iconic Crash Bandicoot enemies. They have appeared in 14 games in the series, one of the most of any enemy on this list. They throw vials that turn into bouncing slime monsters. Luckily, you just need to avoid them to reach the Lab Assistant and give him a taste of his own medicine — or in this case, Coco’s concoctions!
Electro Lab Assistant
A slight variation of the Lab Assistant, the Electro Lab Assistant uses electricity to attack, just as his name suggests. He has two methods of attack: first, to toss electrical spheres at you, and second, to launch waves of electricity that you must jump over. Do your best to avoid these obstacles to reach him and short his fuse!
Iron Checkpoint Crate
The Iron Checkpoint Crate makes its debut as an enemy in Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! While the crate itself has appeared in multiple Crash titles before this, this is the second time the Iron Checkpoint Crate has appeared as an animate object (Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled) and the first time you can do battle with it! The latest incarnation of the crate stacks other Iron Checkpoint Crates to make walls that Crash or Coco must dodge to come out on top, something similar to the Pink Elephant. Just not as fashionable.
The Zombot is another inclusion from 2004’s Crash Twinsanity. The Zombot attacks you by sending smaller copies of itself at Crash or Coco. To defeat the Zombot, simply dodge its smaller copies until you reach the original one.
The Thorn Thing has only appeared in one other Crash Bandicoot game. It originally appeared in Crash Bandicoot on the Tiger 99X handheld device. He is a peon of Mr. Crumb and appears as such in Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! The Thorn Thing grows vines with thorns and throws bouncing seed-like balls to stop Crash and Coco.
The Elementals (Rok-Ko, Wa-Wa, Py-Ro, Lo-Lo)
These four evil masks are back right off their appearance in 2020’s Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time! These natural disaster-causing enemies are the opposite of Crash’s guardian mask, Aku-Aku, in nearly every way. Each mask has a slightly different style of attack. Rok-Ko grows crystal obstacles and spits rocks you, while Wa-Wa shoots balls of water and waves to stop Crash and Coco in their tracks. Py-Ro starts random fires and spits fireballs at the player. Lastly, Lo-Lo attacks with bolts of lightning and balls of electricity.
The robot racer from Crash Nitro Kart has joined the race to stop Crash and Coco! Geary uses an attached hose to shoot fireballs at the player. The fireballs take up only one running lane each, so they’re pretty easy to dodge.
Limited Time Appearance
The Noid has returned in 2021 to advertise for Domino’s Pizza once again, and for a limited time, it is appearing in Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! The Noid attacks the player by shooting frozen bolts from an ice gun. Dodge these like all other mini-bosses. It is a part of N. Tropy’s gang during the Running Outta Time event.
The bosses of Crash: On The Run! are similar in their stages: they will throw projectiles at you, which you need to switch lanes to dodge, or jump over to avoid. Along the way, there will be Whumpa fruits on the ground. Run over them to pick up them, and the next time you do a spin attack (single tap on your screen), you will throw the fruit at the boss. Good for one use only!
Keep picking up and throwing fruits at them to bring their health down to zero, and you’ll initiate the chemical-throwing/gun-toting scenario. How many different items you need to start the boss run will determine how many items you need to throw or guns you need to shoot at the boss, which means you can have multiple chances to gain bonus EXP!
But it’s not all that simple! Upon being thrown, the fruit will bounce forward at a certain speed, keeping to the same lane you initially threw it. This means the boss needs to still be in the same lane, else the fruit will hit nothing and carry on its way to Fruity Haven! Since there are also obstacles, the bouncing fruit may explode against the obstacle instead. Also, remember that the bosses launch their own projectiles which will also prematurely explode the fruit.
Time yourself to toss the fruit only after the boss finishes a relatively large attack, because he will have to enter cooldown and stay in the same lane for a while before picking up and continuing his barrage. Besides, the fruits aren’t provided at every bend or turn, so if you miss one toss, you’ll have to be patient and wait to pick up the next one – if the boss’s projectiles don’t zap you first!
This scorpion-gorilla beast from Crash of the Titans is back to wreak havoc once again! This time, Scorpilla is designed to look more like a cyborg. She hangs from a rocket-powered aircraft, sending shockwaves at the player by pounding the ground. Those shockwaves then turn into pillars of stone. Scorpilla also rolls boulders at the player that take up one lane each.
A hybrid like Scorpilla, Dingodile is, as his name suggests, is a mix of dingo and crocodile. He might just have the most number of appearances for a villain (other than Cortex, of course) numbering to 20 total! This flamethrower-toting villain is one to handle with caution. He shoots streams of flame that take up one row each. He also shoots fireballs that leave fire in the spots they bounce on.
Mutagen Nitrus Brio
Nitrus Brio is the on-again-off-again underling of Neo Cortex. He has appeared in numerous Crash titles, even working with N. Tropy in Crash Twinsanity. Nitrus Brio appears in his Mutagen form in Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! Players must dodge not only falling blocks, but also the large boulders that he tosses. Those take up two lanes, making any escape a narrow one.
Crash’s more homely rival can be a nuisance to deal with, and not only because he’s a cheap knock off of the titular character. He’ll throw whumpa fruits to try to knock you out first, and then he throws a beaker projectile that explodes onto different lanes. Dodge those to reach the wannabe Crash Bandicoot!
Fake Coco is a character that is like fake Crash, in that she mimics Crash’s sister, Coco. Her thick eyebrows and large teeth set her apart from the real Coco, but other than that, she’s similar in appearance. The only other Crash game she has appeared in is 2020’s Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time. Her attacks copy those of Fake Crash: first she throws whumpa fruits, and then she throws exploding beakers onto various lanes.
The bucktoothed niece (or possibly daughter) of Neo Cortex is once again causing problems for Crash and Coco! Last spotted in Crash Bandicoot 4, Nina uses her bionic steel hands as rockets, launching them at you. She also drops TNT and Nitro crates to make progress difficult. You should make good use of the whumpa fruits to destroy her crates and damage Nina herself.
Dr. Neo Cortex (and Robo Neo Cortex)
Here he is: the main bad guy of the Crash Bandicoot multiverse and Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! He has appeared in thirty-seven games in total, including an appearance in Skylanders: Imaginators. Funnily enough, despite his status as boss of the bosses, Cortex is no more difficult to defeat than the others.
He fires a laser beam from his aircraft that the player must dodge. He also shoots energy balls in each lane, which can be a challenge to outmaneuver. His robot form, Robo Neo Cortex, is a little different. He drops bombs into each lane and shoots twin lasers from his eyes into one lane. But still, avoidable if you keep a close eye out for his attacks!
Uka Uka is a powerful voodoo mask with amazing abilities. Sound familiar? That’s because he’s Aku Aku’s twin brother! Note the opposite spellings of the two brothers. Uka Uka is usually the true mastermind behind any evil in the Crash Bandicoot series, even more so than Cortex! He holds nothing back when attacking the player! He spawns stone pillars, shoots a row of fireballs that takes up all three running lanes, and shoots a laser beam from his eyes into one lane. Though he can be defeated like the rest of the bosses, he’s definitely not your average enemy!
Just like the Thorn Thing, Mr. Crumb appeared in Crash Bandicoot on the Tiger 99X handheld device. He is a ghost that haunts his own mansion, wary of anyone or anything that tries to steal his sizable amount of gold. Mr. Crumb’s attacks include summoning tombstones in one or more lanes and conjuring copies of himself to hurl spirit balls at the player.
This misnomer of a beast is as much of a mainstay in the Crash Bandicoot series as Dr. Neo Cortex is. He is a giant, angry, musclebound tiger whose main goal is take down Crash. Tiny shoves tridents into the ground to stop the player. He also stabs down with his trident, creating a wave of rock in one lane.
Limited Time Appearances
One of the main villains of Crash Bandicoot 4, N. Tropy, has returned as a boss in Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! She is the limited time boss of the game of the second season, Running Outta Time. She sends a shockwave at you that takes up all three lanes. She also has the ability to conjure cyclones that come two or three at a time in one or two lanes. An important thing to note: her shockwave can pick up crates, meaning that Nitro crates you could have jumped over now need to be dodged instead by switching lanes.
With such a rich roster of enemies from many of the games of the Crash Bandicoot series, Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! is off to a good start in the variety category. More game updates and limited time events should bring more enemies, familiar and brand new, as well, changing up the content even further. Until then, it’s time to run and for Crash and Coco to save the world from Cortex once again!
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