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Zem is an alien from an unknown world and is one of Nitros Oxide's henchmen, along with Zam. He races for Team Oxide, which in turn is affiliated with Emperor Velo XXVII. Alongside Crunch for Team Bandicoot and Tiny for Team Cortex, Zem appears to be the muscle equivalent for his team.


Crash Nitro Kart

Zem was seen in Crash Nitro Kart racing for Emperor Velo XXVII on Team Oxide alongside Nitros Oxide, Zam and Real Velo. He is unlocked by completing the Green Gem Cup.


Speed: 7/7
Accel: 2/7
Turn: 4/7
Difficulty: Advanced

Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled

Zem returned as a playable racer in Nitro-Fueled along with all other racers from CNK. He can be bought from the Pit Stop for 1500 wumpa coins. In the Nitros Oxide Edition of the game, he's unlocked by default.


Speed: 7/7
Accel: 3/7
Turn: 2/7
Difficulty: Advanced
Driving Style: Speed

Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time

Zem has a cameo in It's About Time, where he appears racing with Nitros Oxide and N. Trance in Oxide's 100% ending illustration.



Zem is a grotesque alien known for his vulgarity and disgusting nature, specifically shown in his penchant for constantly burping and making revolting noises. He is also largely gluttonous, and many of his quotes usually have something to do with eating. He also seems to have a passion for rock music, as he forms horns with his hands and lets go of his tongue while winning. This is more evident in his Punk skin where he plays air guitar.

Physical Appearance

Zem is a bulky, green, troll-like alien. He has sharp teeth, a prominent lower lip, a round nose, black eyes with pink eyebags, pointy elf-like ears, muscular arms and yellowed, pointy claws. His legs and feet are quite small in proportion to his body, and his feet have two toes with yellowed claws. He is balding, with the remains of his purple hair sticking up at the back, as well as a thick purple monobrow. He wears a bronze jumpsuit with golden trim, a belt with a golden V-shaped buckle at the front and purple kneepads with golden edging, two on the right leg and three on the left. He has similar pads on his right arm, one on his shoulder and one on his forearm. He wears hand braces the same color as his jumpsuit on each hand, golden Vs decorating the backs of his hands.

His design sees minimal changes in Nitro-Fueled, with the only real changes being his color scheme being made more vibrant, his suit being given a zipper at the front, and his eyes being made gray.


Nitros Oxide

Zem is one of Nitros Oxide's two henchmen along with Zam. The two of them are the other two primary members of Team Oxide alongside Oxide himself. Though Oxide seems to prefer to work alone, as seen in CTR and Crash Bash, he gets Zem and Zam to assist him in CNK, likely due to a racing team being required for those racing in the galaxy circuit. Zem is very loyal to Oxide when he calls on him, and holds respect for him and his accomplishments, shown in the Nitro-Fueled comic.


Zam and Zem are two of a pair, having matching names and never being seen apart. They don't have any on-screen interaction in-game, though in the Nitro-Fueled comic, Zem entertains Zam by burping and farting loudly as they walk down an alley with Oxide. Given Zam's animalistic nature, Zam is likely a pet of sorts for Zem.

Emperor Velo XXVII

Despite primarily being Nitros Oxide's henchman, Zem seems dedicated to Velo as well, with Velo's V symbol being present on Zem's uniform, and both of them being members of Team Oxide.


  • "Aw, come on, I won't bite!"
  • "Aw, like takin' candy from a baby!"
  • "Palakaloo!"
  • "I'm so close, (Burps) you can taste it!"
  • "(Burps) Ah, tasty!"
  • "(Burps) Ooh so sweet!"
  • "(Burps)"
  • "Feel the burp!"
  • "I feel sick!"
  • "Now we're cooking with fire!"
  • "I'm workin' up an appetite!"
  • "Ooh, wise guy, huh?!"
  • "Serving you up, extra crispy!"
  • "Sneaky sneaky sneaky!"
  • "Something to snack on!"
  • "Takes more than that to cook me!"
  • "Try to fry me, will ya?"



See: Zem/Gallery

Names In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Arabic زيم
(same as English)
Japanese ゼム
(same as English)


  • Zem did not appear in the GBA version of Crash Nitro Kart although his icon appeared in some screenshots, including on the back of the box.
  • While apparently from Gasmoxia, Zem appears to be a different race then Oxide, resembling Velo in appearance. It is possible that Gasmoxia is home to more than one sapient species, or that Zem or his species originally came from Velo's planet.
  • Out of the four main members of the Advanced class in Crash Nitro Kart, Zem is the only one to have 2/7 in Acceleration and 4/7 in Turning, instead of 4/7 in Acceleration and 2/7 in Turning like Crunch, Tiny, and Dingodile. This was probably a mistake by the developers.
    • Although there isn't a Drift driving style in Crash Nitro Kart, Zem's stats are the ones that are the most similar to that of the Drift driving style from Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled.