First thing I would like to say is that people have been complaining about this game being 2d and belonging on a 16 bit machine. Well, first, I doubt these people have played the game at all, and second is that the game's core, the code that contains the information on how you control the movement of Crash remains the same throughout the game, meaning the control you have over Crash is as 3d as Mario64 or say Fade to Black. The things that make it looks familiar to a 2d platformer is the camera angle. On certain levels, it takes the position of side on, but although it looks as though the game has suddenly become 2d, you still have total 360 degree control over Crash. The levels that take the camera angle of side on don't use the 360 freedom very much, because limitations on movement are put in place to ensure the game has a more conventional platformer feel.
Anyhow, the game is a platformer where the camera angles change at every level, making it a very original and fun experience. Crash's design is good, he is a likeable guy, but still retains a sense of seriousness unlike other platform games. The levels take a jungle look through the first set of levels, and as the game progresses, it takes more of an industrial look. Every memory I have of enjoying platformers in the past have been relighted by this game. The skill of timing, the exploration and, of course, the frustration (not in a bad way though).
The game is fairly long, a lot longer than say Jumping Flash or its sequel. It lasts as long as Mario 64, but maybe the replay value is not quite as good, although the hidden places and levels are a good incentive to keep coming back. The game's difficulty is good, it is tough in places and a little easy in others, but everything is done well to even out frustration. The graphics are the most striking thing about this game. The scrolling is smooth, the animation is brilliant and it has to be said that the detail of textures is unmatched by any other game. Obviously, this is only possible because of the restrictions on the freedom of the player, but works very well because the game is brilliant designed. The sound is good, the effects are brilliant and the music suits the game well, and so does the presentation, a polygon intro is a nice touch for building a feel for the game style.
Anyhow, I don't know if I would have a huge party in New York to celebrate this game's launch, but one thing is for sure: as much as I don't really like this style of games, you cannot take away its fun factors and spotless looks.
Summary: I'd rather buy this game than dish out 400 on another machine just for one game.