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Fumbling in the Dark is the second of the two secret levels in Crash Bandicoot and the N. Sane Trilogy remake of the first game. This level is the thirty-third and true final level in the game; it can also be considered the darkest level in the series. It can only be entered once Crash wins the key in Jaws of Darkness, and its entrance is located right after Lights Out. Fumbling in the Dark expands on the mechanics introduced in Lights Out and is the second and last level to use those mechanics in the game.

In this level, Crash sneaks his way through the darkened, eerie corridors of Cortex Castle. Because the darkness basically makes the passage he traverses pitch black and the enemies are deadly as only their red eyes can be seen, that and he can't tell when to jump over pits. The Aku Aku masks glow brightly, illuminating the level so Crash can navigate. Collecting the masks is the safest and only way to get through the level, meaning that if Crash does not find another mask quickly enough then his current mask will start to dim or if he's hit by an enemy, he'll be trapped in dark.



Names in other languages

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ふかい くらやみの なかで
Fukai kura yami no naka de
In the Deep Darkness


  • This is the only level in the PlayStation 1 Crash games whose name contains four words. All other levels, race tracks, and minigames have three words or less in their names.
  • The player needs to be careful about spinning rats and spiders, because spinning them can break Aku Aku crates in the distance, which would mean Crash would have to go for a period in the future without a light source. It is recommended to always jump on such enemies in this level, instead of spinning them.
  • At the start of the level, if Crash travels backwards, six crates can be found, which are required to get the clear gem. An Aku Aku makes this section easier, as Crash must jump several times to reach them.
  • In the prototype, this area with the crates isn't there.
    • It's still possible for Crash to fall if he walks too far backwards from the Aku Aku crate however.
  • In the prototype, Fumbling in the Dark appears as a normal level instead of a secret one. This is because the Cortex bonus rounds don't exist and the keys had not been developed yet.
  • In the first version of the prototype, Fumbling in the Dark has textures and appears to be more complete than Lights Out.
  • In the prototype, Aku Aku has his normal look instead of ghostly look in the final version. He still lights up the path even though Crash does not really need him to complete the level. The reason for this is unknown.
  • This is the last unlockable level in the game.
  • There is a glitch in this level where if Crash enters with 2 Aku Aku masks and does not die, then one of the swinging blades in the middle of the level with be swinging backward and forward instead of side to side like normal. This does not always happen however. Lights Out has a similar blade near the end of the level.
  • The name of the level sounds similar to Alone in the Dark, which is the name of a video game series.