Crash is going racing!Vivendi Universal Games (VU Games) announced today its plan to release the next installment in the Crash Bandicoot(R) franchise, a new character-based racing title named Crash Nitro Kart. The game is scheduled for release fourth quarter 2003 for the PlayStation(R)2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox(TM) video game system from Microsoft, Nintendo GameCube(TM) and the Game Boy(R) Advance. Albany, NY-based studio Vicarious Visions (Crash Bandicoot: The Huge Adventure, Crash Bandicoot 2: N-Tranced) is developing the game. In Crash Nitro Kart, Crash will hit the track in his fastest-paced adventure yet! Kidnapped by the ruthless Emperor Velo and forced to race in his galactic coliseum, Crash must speed his way to victory in order to save Earth from destruction ... but it wont be easy, as he must compete against foes both old and new before a final showdown with Velo himself! The new game will invite players to race as virtually any character in the Crash universe and zip their way over 17 high-speed raceways through four unique worlds featuring lush jungles, erupting volcanoes and futuristic cities and space stations. Single player action in adventure, arcade and time trial modes will provide numerous hours of exciting gameplay, while intense multiplayer action allowing up to eight players to race against each other using multiple systems will make Crash Nitro Kart an ideal party game. "The release of a Crash Bandicoot kart racing title created specifically for next-generation video game systems has been eagerly anticipated by Crash fans for some time," said Luc Vanhal, VU Games North American President & COO. "By mixing rich next-generation graphics and incredible gameplay with the playability and fun of classic kart-racing titles, Crash Nitro Kart will lead the pack in 2003."