Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
Release Date: 6/8/2010
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The Good: Excellent platforming, using water is really fun, looks good, decent story
The Bad: Shallow combat, story isn’t fleshed out enough, not artistically impressive, very short, that crappy DRM
You are the Prince once again who much stop his brother from using King Salomon’s army of sand to destroy the kingdom. The story is pretty straightforward, predictable, and not very interesting, but it’s enough to keep you interested. The Prince’s banter is funny as always, but there isn’t any character development.
Prince of Persia has gone through a lot of changes since its original release in the 80’s and The Forgotten Sands adds some new things. First, off the game’s focus has changed to elements instead of concentrating too much on time. Yes, you can rewind time if you mess up, but the focal point of the game is the ability to freeze the flow of water and use it as a wall or a pole. Let me set up a little scenario for you: Jump to a wooden beam then you have water spewing out ahead of you. Freeze it jump to it, climb the wall of water, jump back to another pole of water, but then you have two waterfalls next to each other than a wooden beam. Quickly unfreeze the water, jump in between, freeze quickly jump back to the other waterfall, unfreeze the water to jump through the other one and you’re done. Sounds complicated? It really isn’t, but getting your timing down is a bit tricky at first.
You can also use water to solve puzzles by freezing the water and having poles on the statue stop so lower pieces can rotate etc. While water is the main element the other ones feel tacked on. You can jump to an enemy that’s on a ledge that’s too far away to jump so you get this super dash move. It feels unnecessary since you only use it for this. The other “power” is the ability to bring back a piece of the environment, but this also feels tacked on since there’s no real challenge to it. It works like water since you can only bring back one piece at a time. I wish they would have used Earth and the wind or something like that instead.
The platforming is top notch and every level is cleverly designed with tons of traps and obstacles to work yourself around. All the same type of traps from previous games are here and each level never feels the same. The game slowly makes each level harder and harder, but the game always feels really easy, and not to mention short. The puzzles are easier this time around, and there aren’t that many of them either, but there are a couple of head scratchers thrown in there.
The combat is probably the worst part of the game. You get lots of enemies on screen, but they all look the same and there aren’t even half a dozen variants. They are pretty dumb and don’t really do much and you can quickly take them down. You get a basic attack, a shove attack, and you can jump on enemies. The combat is very shallow and even with the powers you can upgrade you never really use them since the game is so easy. These vary from flames, ice, wind etc, but you only really use these if you are playing on hard. Bosses are even easy since they all play the same, and aren’t very interesting.
When it comes to looks the game uses the Assassin’s Creed II engine, but for some reason doesn’t look as good. It’s the best looking PoP game to date technically, but artistically it feels like all the others and strays away from the 2008 PoP reboot’s looks. Is this the best PoP game? No, but it is a good one. While the shallow combat breaks up the exciting platforming you will get a good 6 hours of PoP fun.