Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back
Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back is the second game in the Crash Bandicoot series, and the sequel to the original game. Crash Bandicoot 2's gameplay is largely similar to that of the original. However, there are some differences. Players make their way through a limited environment whilst breaking crates, each of which containing some kind of bonus. Breaking all of a level's crates earns the player that level's clear gem. The player can also collect additional clear and colored gems by finding and touching them. Colored gems activate secret areas. If the player collects all of the gems in the game, the secret ending is activated.
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PLAYED THE N. SANE TRILOGY VERSION
Refines everything about the first game that made it fun, add some additional moves and challenges, and you've got a sequel that easily trumps its predecessor. It's difficulty also feels a tad reduced, though things definitely amp up towards the end of the game (aside from the final boss, which is so pathetically easy I beat it first try completely by accident). I think it balances the difficulty the best out of all of the Crash games (I've played).
While the first game felt devoid of interesting ideas, Crash 2 is where the series really developed into something special. It could have benefitted from a few more level motifs and better bosses, but everything else was a major improvement over the original.