Expert Game Recommendations From the GamePros

December 3, 2008 at 1:22 am (PoP)

Prince of Persia CoverI was never a huge fan of the original Prince of Persia games, but when the series was reborn in 2003’s The Sands of Time, I quickly became a fanboy. The ensuing trilogy on the PS2 and Xbox took the Prince’s plaforming roots and turned them into full-scale displays of acrobatics and dazzling swordplay. But the Prince’s ability to reverse time became the core of the three aforementioned games-and it’s mysteriously absent in the franchise’s debut on the PS3 and Xbox 360.

But it’s not the end of the world because the new Prince of Persia represents a fresh start for the series. Not only is the time control mechanic gone but the visual style has been completely overhauled, placing the Prince in a colorful yet gritty cel-shaded world. Fans of the series will be relieved to hear, though, that stunning leaps and wall-runs still form the basis of the gameplay. There’s also a new sword-based combat system and abundant environmental puzzles to solve. The new foundation proves to be a boon for the Prince because the old formula was starting to smell stale. In my opinion, the new storyline, visual update and improved gameplay mechanics are just what the doctor ordered-it culminates in a game that is much more fun than its close cousin, Assassin’s Creed.

THE BOTTOM LINE: A much-needed and welcome reboot for the series, Prince of Persia integrates wonderfully fun acrobatics with often-tricky swordplay, presented in a beautiful new, cel-shaded art style; it’s an excellent debut for the franchise on the PS3 and Xbox 360.

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