All the villains return for another round in Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time. Evil scientists from the past like N. Brio. N. Gin, N. Tropy and Neo Cortex make a big appearance, and their boss battles are more elaborate than ever before. Surviving against this guys is tricky, and winning is even harder — especially if you’re trying to win in three lives or less.
For all you curious players out there, we’re covered how to beat all six bosses in the game. Some bosses are epic confrontations, while others are decidedly small-scale. They’re all full of surprises, and you have to pull specific moves to damage them. If you’re not sure how to beat a boss, or just want to see what these returning foes are up to in Crash 4, check out the full guide below.
More Crash Bandicoot 4 guides:
How To 100% Every Level | All Hidden Gems & Crates Locations Guide | How To Get All 4 Colored Gems | Blue, Yellow, Green & Red Locations | How To Find The Ridiculous WOAH! Meme | WOAH YEAH! Easter Egg Guide
Boss #1: N. Gin
N. Gin appears with a massive drum-playing robot. His fight consists of four phases — you’ll be stuck on dangerous platforms while little minions are sent to attack you.
To damage N. Gin during all phases, you need to spin-attack three minions to stun him. While stunned, a timer will appear so you need to rush up the platforming challenge to damage N. Gin.
Phase 1: He sends three minions while you’re stuck on a conveyor. Spin-attack each minion as they kamikaze charge you.
Phase 2: Two conveyors will appear, and N. Gin generates energy blasts. Jump over green blasts, and slide (or just duck) under red blasts. After launching enough energy discs, he’ll spawn a minion. Hit three to stun him.
Phase 3: The fight gets a lot harder here. There are three conveyors, and the energy discs move much faster. Try to only use single-hop jumps, and try to avoid jumping as much as possible. Run to avoid the incoming green lights, and jump only when you have no other choice to make this part easier.
Phase 4: N. Gin clears the stage and summons moving platforms. Take it slow and jump onto the platforms as they move left / right. Use the slide-jump to give yourself more air and reach further platforms. This is a short section, but getting all three can be tricky.
Boss #2: Louise
This miniboss is the only one of its kind. You’ll encounter it at the end of the final level in Map 3. This giant squid monster is fairly straightforward — it summons one (or multiple) tentacles to attack you while spinning knife-rats chase you.
There are three phases here; first 1 tentacle spawns, then 2 tentacles, and finally 3 tentacles. To damage Lousie, lure the knife-rat minions into the tentacles while they’re upright. Cut down all six to end the fight.
The tentacles are slow. Watch when they rear back to avoid getting crushed, and use the [R2 / RT] boost to quickly escape nasty situations with the knife-wielding rats.
Boss #3: N. Brio
N. Brio is a weird little scientist with a whole bunch of potions. He has two very distinct phases — his potion-throwing phase, and his super-strength phase.
Phase 1: In this phase, N. Brio stands on an out-of-reach platform and throws many explosive potions that generate purple energy rings. Jump over the rings — stay close to the area of the explosion and do one hop or two to stay in the air long enough.
To damage N. Brio, wait for him to throw a green potion that generates a minion. Spin-attack the blob to send it flying into N. Brio’s ugly face. You’ll get a checkpoint after each attack — he’ll generate 1 blob, then 2 blobs, and finally 3 blobs. Send them all back to begin the more challenging Phase 2.
Phase 2: N. Brio transforms into a hulking monsters when he has one health left. In this phase, N. Brio slowly chases you while slamming the ground, generating small explosion rings rapidly. He moves slow, so lure him to one corner, then weave around him (with a double-jump) and run to the opposite corner.
Eventually he’ll get tired and you’ll gain the Purple Mask power-up. Transform and use your enhanced spin-attack to knock him off the ledge. With 1 HP left, he’ll generate a much larger and faster energy ring periodically. There’s a rhythm — so try to anticipate it and hop over. Give yourself plenty of room and don’t let him corner you.
Boss #4: Neo Cortex
On Neo Cortex’s blimp, you’ll be on a large platform arena while N. Cortex launches volleys of rockets at you. He’s got a variety of different attacks at his disposal, and this fight eventually gets very tough. To damage him, wait for him to deploy a spinning robot minion. When the robot gets dizzy, spin-attack to send it flying back at Cortex.
Phase 1: The simplest phase. Cortex launches volleys of rockets. Avoid until a spinning robot minion appears, then attack to end the phase. Keep moving to avoid the rockets and you’ll have no problem.
Phase 2: Cortex stops the missiles and launches energy discs. Jump over the green energy, and avoid the purple energy. The purple energy is smaller, so you can avoid them by standing on the edge of a square. Use the ability to slow-time if you’re ever overwhelmed. You won’t really need it until later.
Phase 3: For this phase, Cortex launches missiles and sends energy discs. Stand in the center and carefully move forward slightly — if you stand dead center, you’ll dodge every purple energy disc. Just don’t forget to jump the green ones and keep moving (slightly) to dodge the homing rockets.
Phase 4: The final phase is easily the most difficult. Most of the floor drops down, rockets fall much faster, and Cortex introduces a new type of energy disc. You can slide (or just duck) under red energy as it appears. Sliding helps, but I prefer slowing down time, ducking, then releasing slow-mo to let the red energy pass over.
Use slow-mo liberally here. If you end it early, you can restart it almost right away. After two rounds of red energy, the robot minion will appear. Slow-mo when it gets dizzy and it’s possible to reach it before a third red energy wave begins.
Boss #5: N. Tropy Twins
You’ll have to fight both N. Tropies in this dimension. The time-travelling goon has his alternate-universe sister and an evil machine. Your goal is to reach the center of the motion, and you’ll have to complete a gauntlet of platforming challenges.
Phase 1: Starting in space, you’ll need to jump on moving platforms to reach the device in the center. Using the Purple Mask, jump off the platforms and wait as long as you can before double-jumping to give yourself the most possible horizontal distance. The trick with this part is just making you can actually reach the distant platforms.
Phase 2: The second phase gives you the Yellow Mask for slow-mo. Watch the distance, and try to spot the slower-moving platforms. Most of them move too fast, but if you land on the opposite side (right side for platforms moving left, and vice-versa) you’ll have enough time to slow-mo again and jump off.
Remember that you need to land on the platform before deactivating slow-mo. The platforms are so fast, they’ll instantly move out from under you if you don’t land on solid ground.
Phase 3: The final phase pits you against the N. Tropy twins. Use the mask to reverse gravity and destroy each of the red power conduits — you’ll have to retreat from N. Tropy and dodge his / her attacks while destroying the red conduits.
The conduits block energy attacks, so if an attack is coming behind the conduit, you can safely drop down / drop up and attack without having to worry about dodging the projectile. The trick is just to move fast and anticipate the orientation of the conduits.
You have to be quick. Keep moving and swap gravity right after attacking — you’ll get a checkpoint after each conduit chase phase.
Boss #6: The Final Boss
The final battle pits you against Neo Cortex again, but this time he’s got the masks to help him. Instead of using your power-ups, you’ll have to avoid his special abilities — there’s a different ability for each phase. Survive long enough, and Cortex will summon a minion that launches tracking missiles. Attack the minion to damage Cortex. He has five phases, so let’s get into it.
Phase 1: In this phase, Cortex won’t use any of the mask powers. You’ll learn the central gimmick of this fight — hitting the blaster turrets that generate energy shockwaves you have to jump over. Watch out for the red platforms — that means they’re about to fall. Jump on the turrets three times and knock out the minion to complete the first phase. Consider this your tutorial.
Phase 2: The blue mask is first. The platforms will disappear in sequence beneath you. Hop over and survive until the two turrets appears. Take your time and make sure to calculate your jump so you can jump over the energy blast and still avoid the disappearing blocks.
Phase 3: This phase begins with a simple tutorial — teaching you that the red lasers are low (jump to survive) and blue lasers are high (slide to survive) — the danger comes when the entire room flips upside-down. You don’t need to slide to avoid the blue lasers, just duck! Hold duck and then jump over the red lasers. Survive and the turrets will appear. You know the rest.
Phase 4: Next up is slow-mo. The corner platforms will not drop, so stand in the lower-left corner and simply wait for the blaster turrets to spawn. Jump and break one, then follow the cascading platforms to the upper right corner. Simple.
Phase 5: The final wave is tricky. Cortex spins in a circle with energy beams — jump the beams and wait in the lower-center for the turrets to appear. Four turrets will spawn this time. Smash the lowest, hop to the middle one, then go right / left. Then you just need to avoid the lasers while dodging just one energy ring.
After all the turrets are destroyed, Cortex summons four minions instead of one. Defeat all four to end the battle. I recommend taking out the left one first, and moving right to clear the rest. Don’t rush! As long as you dodge, the minions can’t hit you with their launchers. Wait until you’re clear from the spinning lasers before going in for the kill.
If you manage to complete that last wave, you’ll beat the game! Now Crash and friends can hang out together, playing video games and ignoring world-saving responsibility.