The Gauntlet (きょうふの からくりダンジョン lit. Dreadful Mechanism Dungeon in Japanese) is the eleventh level and is the first level of the third warp room in Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex. The level takes place in a dungeon-type of environment and is filled with many trapdoors, torture devices and dangerous enemies. One of the main features of this level are the trap doors that line the floor in various place, in which Crash must quickly avoid in order to avoid falling to his death. There are also many deadly traps outlined along the level including rotating torture devices, falling boulders, spiked walls, and a giant gauntlet of fire itself. Towards the end of the level, there is a death route in which Crash has the option to complete in order to gain the purple gem.
Enemies and Obstacles
- Crushing Mallets - Found in the first side scrolling part of the level, these mallets will attempt to defeat Crash by slamming on the floor repeatedly. He must be quick when running past these, or else they will crush him.
- Trap Doors - These trap doors are disguised as big wooden doors on the ground, which contain a giant pit underneath. When Crash walks onto one of these, they will quickly open up in order to try and drop Crash into the pit below. He must quickly jump from the wooden doors before they completely open.
- Battle Axes - These giant axes appear near the beginning of the level, and oscillate back and forth, in which Crash must try to avoid while passing them.
- Rotating Torture Devices - These rotating pillars contain giant blades and spiked maces that rotate in different directions. Crash must avoid these obstacles while passing them, which usually requires timing and patience in order to pass them effectively.
- Wizards - These lab assistants disguised as wizards will shoot blasts of energy at Crash. He can avoid the green energy balls by running away from until they vanish. The wizards can be easily defeated by spinning or sliding them away. If Crash is hit by their energy blasts, he will turn into a bat and lose a life or Aku Aku mask.
- Knights - These lab assistants disguised as knights will try and prevent Crash from moving along the path by blocking him. Crash can dispatch the knights by sliding into them, or by outrunning them when they try to block him.
Towards the end of the level, there is a platform with a skull and crossbones on it that will take Crash into a secret portion of the level. This platform will only be there if Crash has not lost a life. The death route is filled with more torture devices and traps than the regular level. This includes faster and tougher rotating pillars that are harder to avoid, and nitro crates lined up together in one room. In one part of the route, Crash will come across a pit of lava in which he must navigate through by jumping on small platforms. At the end of the death route, Crash can collect a purple gem to add to his collection. It is worth noting that it's possible to crouch under all the rotating devices.
- Interestingly, all three versions have a different box total.
- All the Nitro crates in the Death Route are cosmetic in the PS2 version, thus contributing to the lower crate count in it compared to the two other versions.
- Despite having a different Bonus Board design, it reuses the Death Route platform from Wizards and Lizards.
- Some changes have been made on the crates in the bonus from the original PS2 version: On later versions, after the first jump, a TNT crate was removed, later after the three simple crates, the four bounce crates in the air were removed and just after, the TNT crates were replaced by nitro crates, but the one under the second Nitro crate is removed. There are only 35 crates, for a total of 136 on the level.
- In the bonus of the GameCube version, the sixth TNT crate in the row after the first jump and the crate below the second TNT crate after the bounce crates are not removed. Also, all Nitro crates were TNT crates, just like in the original PS2 versions.