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Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy Package Art
  Vicarious Visions
  VU Games

Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy

The second half to the dual combo of Spyro the Dragon and Crash Bandicoot Game Boy Advance games pits our purple hero against the baddies of the Bandicoot world. Spyro the dragon finds himself facing off against the evil Dr. Cortex. Can Spyro save this strange new world while Crash battles in the dragon realm? Will Ripto and Cortex take over both worlds??? Not if our heroes have anything to do about it.


As per usual to the Spyro and Crash worlds you're offered a vibrantly colorful world to explore. Being a side-scroller, you aren't able to view the world in as much detail as would be preferred, but it still offers unique surprises. You'll often find hidden items behind the scenery, or an area that requires some tricky flying to get to.

The characters look very nice in this newest handheld edition, surpassing the look of previous Spyro handheld versions. The visual effects are nicely done and entertaining as well. Spyro torching hapless critters for firefly food is hilarious. You're left with a blackened beast that falls into a heap of dust. It’s quite amusing to witness, to say the least.


The music and sounds effects are decent, but nothing to write home about. A peppy tune keeps you going through your quest and through the various mini-games.


The gameplay is pretty smooth this time around. Spyro jumps and moves well and soon learns to double-jump and glide through his journey. The various mini-games are fun and offer you the chance to earn trading cards. The collectable trading cards you can collect in both Spyro Orange and Crash Purple are an interesting new gimmick. In order to obtain them all you must complete mini-games, buy them from shops, and on occasion find them hiding around the world. There are a few cards that are only found on Orange, and some only in Purple, so if you really want the entire set you'll have to play both games. They vary in rarity which can be determined by its color. For example, blue is common while red is very rare.


Apart from the usual story mode a party mode is also offered. Upon discovering new mini-games in story mode you are able to play them by themselves in party mode. These you can play alone or with up to four other friends via GBA link cables. Linking up Spyro Orange and Crash Purple opens up more multiplayer game options between gamers. Not only can you play games together, you can trade cards as well. This is a great way to get those cards you couldn't obtain in your version if someone else has the other game in the duo. You can also compete in multiplayer games using “competitive trading." Players put their cards on the line while competing in a game, deciding the rarity of the cards they wish to risk.


I enjoyed Spyro Orange much more than the previous GBA installments, although the gameplay was much more simplistic this time around. It seems to be geared more towards beginner players rather than the seasoned Spyro fan. However, anyone who enjoys the Crash Bandicoot and Spyro the Dragon franchises is sure to have some fun with these two latest releases. Having a multiplayer option alone adds some incentive to buy one or both of these games. This would be a good buy for parents to look into.

final score 7.7/10

Staff Avatar Charlotte Flam
Staff Profile | Email
"If you stop dreaming, you kill your hopes... and without hope, what is there?"

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