That "N" is for nostalgia. If you were a 90s kid, Crash Bandicoot was the biggest gaming icon since Mario. Though he's more like Sonic. Once cool and awesome, he seems to have gotten too big for his own good and... well, crashed.
Throughout Crash's history, only the first three games stood out as simple but challenging platformers. The newer games were just more of the same. Since Naughty Dog moved on from the franchise, there hasn't been any real innovation in the series.
If anything, Crash Twinsanity, one of his last releases on the PlayStation 2, was a bold effort in platforming and tried to take the game to new heights. But its unprecedented difficulty proved too much for casual players.
Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy is a portal to the past and a reminder of what made the first three Crash Bandicoot games awesome. It is a remake of the first three games. Platform by platform, they're basically the same games with updated graphics. There are no added features or shifts in difficulty, no new secret rooms or added collectibles. The only thing that's really new is the option to play as Coco, Crash's sister. Though she's basically just a re-skinned Crash with unique animations.
The game is a reminder of how 3D platformers started and how far they've come since then. The N. Sane Trilogy is a history lesson; one that reminds us of the limitations (or as I'd call them, "challenges") of past hardware and how developers were able to make compelling games onto a small Compact Disc. Odd camera angles, pixel perfect jumps, and large invisible hit boxes are just some of the game mechanics that make a return in this remaster.
The cleverest thing about these games are the boss fights. Each one is a puzzle that requires you to learn your enemies' attack patterns as you dodge and attack. Some of the boss fights are straightforward with their blinking red weak points, while others require a little more observation - a deviant from most platforming games.
Under the Activision banner and this sudden surge of interest in Crash Bandicoot, a proper sequel seems possible. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. The last time that happened, Crash burned to the ground in utter humiliation. It's best to just take some time with these games, learn what makes them great, and redo them for 21st century millennials.