Crush is a Sega platform/puzzle game originally released for the PlayStation Portable. The game's main feature is the ability to "crush" a 3D environment into 2D. This can be used to reach extremely high or low platforms when crushed vertically, or to cross insurmountable gaps if crushed horizontally.
The plot of the game focuses on Danny, a young adult who's been hospitalized due to his chronic insomnia. Willing to pay any price to get over his mental problems, he seeks the help of a mad scientist known as Dr. Reubens. Using the Doc's Cognitive Regression Utilizing pSychiatric Heuristics device (C.R.U.S.H. for short), Danny must conquer physical manifestations of his mind and memories in order to deal with the problems from his past.
There is also a remake for the Nintendo 3DS, titled Crush3d (pronounced "crushed"). Updated graphics aside, the remake's plot is more lighthearted than the original; rather than being a mental case, Danny is a young boy that is friends with Dr. Doccerson (instead of Dr. Reubens). After testing C.R.U.S.H. for him, Danny becomes trapped inside, and must use his crushing abilities to help C.R.U.S.H.'s AI with its problems rather than his own.
Tropes that are included in both versions of Crush:
- Downer Ending: Both games have rather sudden and dark endings.
- Original: Dr. Reubens is enraged to learn that Danny's entire set of problems was simply a fear of the dark instead of the more outlandish problems they encountered and angrily shoos him out of the lab. However, CRUSH attacks Danny for unspecified reasons, with the game ending there.
- Remake: Danny escapes CRUSH, but it's then revealed that Doc is unknowingly trapped inside of CRUSH.
- Fun with Acronyms: Played for laughs with the "Cognitive Regression Utilizing pSychiatric Heuristics" device, which is an "acronym" in the same way that "Get Rid Of Slimy girlS" is an acronym.
- Perspective Magic: You can choose to view the level in 3D or in 2D; in 3D, normal physics apply, but when viewing the world in 2D, this trope comes into full force. You can jump to the other end of the map just by stepping from a block in the foreground to one in the background.
- Pun: You collect lost marbles to solve your problems.
The original Crush features the following tropes:
- Everyone Has Standards: Dr. Reubens is furious at Danny for wasting his time and CRUSH's abilities, but is horrified when CRUSH starts to attack Danny and yells at her to stop.
- One-Word Title: Crush, a simple title that sums up the main gameplay element.
- The Sleepless: Danny, the player character, agrees to be an experimental subject for the C.R.U.S.H. technology to try and cure his insomnia.
The remake, Crush3d, features the following tropes:
- And Your Reward Is Clothes: Several tasks, including beating a world, collecting all the marbles in a stage, and completing a Trophy Mode stage, net you new robes for Danny.
- Company Cameo: You'll be rewarded with a blue robe bearing publisher Sega's logo on it for getting all the Marbles in the final level, and a white one with developer Zoë Mode's logo on it is unlocked for completing all the levels in the third world, Funfair.
- Intergenerational Friendship: Dr. Doccerson is considerably older than Danny, but both are good friends.
- Lighter and Softer: The original game's plot focused on Danny trying to cure his insomnia and face his fears, with the levels all playing into the "fear" aspect of the story, such as his near-death experience at a pier and being assaulted at a fair. In the remake, the levels are instead based around the thoughts of C.R.U.S.H. herself, rather than Danny, who is simply solving her problems.
- Noodle Incident: Doc Doccerson's past lab incidents include "unicorn acupuncture", "Cuddle-boom, the nuclear hug-bot", and "that unfortunate incident with the penguin and the toaster".
- Running Gag: Danny correcting Doc Doccerson about being his friend, not a guinea pig.
- Shout-Out: The opening has Doc recording a tape, prefacing it with a Stardate.
- Valentine's Day Episode: The game is set on February 14th, 2011. A bit of romance creeps in near the end, as C.R.U.S.H. has a crush on Danny.