Release Date: Out now
The 2008 reboot of the Prince of Persia franchise received mixed views, some loved its bright graphics and new style while others hated it’s hand holding nature.
But now Prince of Persia is going back to what many class as its pinnacle, The Sands of Time.
Set in the 7 year gap between the events of The Sands of Time and Warrior Within it captures the Sands of Times acrobatics and puzzle elements perfectly creating the best platformer for a while, sadly it fails to capture Warrior Within’s combat.
It’s treading a fine line with its fanbase by slotting a new game into the classic trilogy of games, as The Forgotten Sands introduces a brother that has never been mentioned before.
And thus the games beginning is set, the Prince is travelling to his brothers kingdom to learn about leadership when he finds his brothers fortress under attack.
The story is set as the Prince’s brother, Malik, unleashes an ancient sand army to help fight his enemies, and as usual it all goes wrong.
It’s an entertaining story for the game and the keeps you happily engrossed in the game throughout, it’s well voice acted as well to help draw you in.
Mix this with some great graphics and environments and you’re all set.
Of course being Prince of Persia there are 3 main elements;
platforming, puzzles and combat.
Sadly only 2 of these 3 get it right.
The platforming is the main draw of the game, at its basic it’s fun but once you get further into the game and the Prince gains the ability to solidify water and other such wonders the platforming takes on a new height and once you get into the flow with barely a pause to assess the next obstacle it’s a wonder to play as you run, leap and slide around taking on the superb level designs that make up this game.
There are some amazing set ups to tackle that keep you on your toes throughout, and the last stages require some spot on timing and dexterous fingers.
Sometimes the controls can be a little fiddly as you gain more powers however and try to link them together.
Among this platforming you encounter puzzles. these are usually fairly basic but still provide a challenge and help add variety to the gameplay, however it’s a shame that there are not more puzzles as they feel a little underused compared to the rest of the gameplay.
A standout is working your way through an observatory, but many of the actual platforming is a puzzle at times as you study the world and figure your way around.
But sadly the combat never lives up to Warrior Within, it’s a pretty basic affair with X being your attack and Y kicks people to the ground.
You can add in a few acrobatic moves but it’s very simplistic, instead the game simply throws vast amounts of enemies at you turning it into a button mashing frenzy.
Oddly the game lacks a block, only a dodge. considering the style it’s a very odd thing not to include in the gameplay.
Combat is spiced up a little later on through the upgrading of powers via a levelling up style system, giving the Prince the ability to create tornado’s and use fire but while it looks spectacular it still does not add enough to the combat.
It’s fun at first and the amount of enemies on screen is impressive but you’ll quickly find yourself tiring of mashing X.
It also makes use of the traditional boss battles, at first these are entertaining affairs until you realise that most of them use the same moveset.
They all rely on the basic “dodge and hit” approach and quickly become mindless battles, it’s a shame that they don’t make more use of the Prince’s acrobatic nature.
The graphics also impress with detailed environments and the enemies are well detailed, the Prince moves with grace while leaping gaps and running up walls.
It’s a very good looking game, though the gameworld can get a little samey after a while.
It’s also interesting to see the prince in between the light hearted Sands of Time and the darker Warrior Within, and he has elements of both in him.
While his platforming is superb and the level design is top notch it’s just shame that he’s no combat genius in this game and that hurts it.
But still, it’s good to see platforming is still alive and well.
+ makes you feel like an acrobatic god!
+ paying with the elements
– boring combat
– getting frustrated at some platforming….
– ….and puzzles
Well detailed world and the enemies look great. but the world does get a little samey after a while
A great musical score is supported by good voice acting
A well told and fun story all round, it will keep you entertained from start to finish
Amazing platforming mixed with puzzle solving, shame about the simplistic combat.
you’ll finish the singleplayer in around 6-8 hours but there is no real replay value to the game and Challenge mode adds very little.
A good return to form for the Prince with outstanding platforming and good storyline marred by some combat issues and samey environments