This is a game I had never heard of back when it was released, only hearing of it in more recent times. I found it for £2 and thought it was worth a go, especially when I heard it being compared to the big names of Crash and Spyro. The box art does look rather juvenile, but if you look past that you will find such a good little game which is quite enjoyable. Ty is underrated but it’s definitely up amongst the likes of what it’s emulating; it’s kind of a mix between Crash, Spyro, and Jak and Daxter. When Crash came to PS2 it should have been something more like Ty, rather than going down the path of the abysmal Twinsanity and Crash of the Titans.
Ty the Tasmanian Tiger is your fairly standard 3D platformer, but it does its job extremely well. It has all the necessities – tight controls, well designed levels and a nice soundtrack. It plays like a game you are already familiar with, you are instantly at ease with the controls and what you are supposed to be doing.
There are only 15 levels which are a little short in terms of getting from point A to B, but the design of them is excellent. They are quite large, and though the path is fairly linear (with the occasional choice of routes), there are plenty of nooks which are easy to miss on your first run through the level. The game isn’t particularly difficult or challenging, but for completionists the level design is where the game really shines. There are a set number of things to find which remains the same throughout each level. 300 opals, 10 cogs, 10 thunder eggs. The opals and cogs are scattered throughout the level. There’s a thunder egg for finding 300 opals, one for completing the level’s “main” task, one for finding all 5 bilbies, and one for a time trial race. The remaining 6 thunder eggs in a level vary from helping people, to navigating your way to the eggs by jumping and gliding. The thunder eggs are very much like the orbs in Spyro 2.
The pictures you find hidden in crates are only displayed as an overall total, which is a bit of a nightmare considering I am missing 1 picture crate and have no idea which level it is in. The other 125 are in the secret 100% level, which I can’t unlock until I find the last 3 opals in Rex Marks the Spot. Finding these will also give me the last thunder egg, bringing my total up to 72/72.
My only gripes with the game are: there are only 15 levels (though I cannot fault those levels in any way), and sometimes the camera can be a little awkward. It tends to move on its own when you are in the middle of jumping, making it difficult to see where exactly you are going. Additionally, if there is an object or wall behind you, the camera refuses to rotate and just “bumps” into the obstruction. It’s no big issue – it’s something that occurs in a lot of games – but it is a little annoying.