Unreleased 'Crash Bandicoot' Level Brought to Life as Free DLC in 'N. Sane Trilogy'

The level so hard, the devs originally hid it

Crash Bandicoot Credit: Vicarious Visions

An infamous, unreleased level from the original Crash Bandicoot is now available as free DLC until Aug. 19 in the remastered N. Sane Trilogy, developer Vicarious Visions announced today via the PlayStation Blog.

Stormy Ascent, a sister level to Crash Bandicoot’s Slippery Climb, was cut late in production for being “insanely difficult,” according to Taylor Kurosaki, a game designer on the original Crash Bandicoot. The level reuses assets from Slippery Climb but boasts a design roughly four times longer than any other level in the game.

“It was playable, but too damn difficult, and we ran out of time to make it easier,” Kurosaki said.

At the time, it was less risky to keep the level on the disc than completely remove it, so the developers hid Stormy Ascent, although fans armed with GameSharks (remember those?) had exclusive access to what became one of the original game’s most notorious challenges.

Players can download Stormy Ascent now on the PlayStation Store. For more Crash, read about the obstacles Naughty Dog faced in bringing the original Crash Bandicoot to life in our oral history.

In the long-running Crash Bandicoot platformer series, you play as the titular marsupial who spins, jumps and sometimes shoots his way through a variety of color-splashed worlds and battles the bad guys who inhabit them. The first three games - recently remastered in one package by Vicarious Visions - are celebrated for their varied and increasingly difficult level designs (not to mention a certain dance that Crash performs at the end of each level).