aliss's Prince of Persia (PlayStation 3) review

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  • aliss wrote this review on .
  • 3 out of 6 Giant Bomb users found it helpful.
  • aliss has written a total of 3 reviews. The last one was for Demon's Souls

Looks good at first, but lacks staying power

When this game first came out, I thought it had everything I like. Beautiful art and graphics with a watercolor style? Check. Platforming plus combo-based 3rd person combat? Check. Thought-provoking story with a romantic angle? Check. I was all set to love this game.
 
But after getting about 6 hours or so in, I completely lost interest.  There are a bunch of design and gameplay flaws that really hold the game back.
 
First, the platforming is largely automated. You see a ledge, you press a button to jump and run across the ledge. The character's movement is not mapped 1-to-1 to your control stick. At first, this is a disconnect because you expect you will actually have to control the Prince. If you're not used to it, you will spaz out and die a lot. But later, even once you get the hang of it, it's a letdown because it's like the computer does the work for you.
 
Second is the combat -- which is a lot of fun, but completely disconnected from the platforming. I was expecting a twitch-based experience like Devil May Cry where you would combo jump to the top of a platform and then battle some enemies. But instead, whenever there is a fight, the game locks you into "fight mode" which is a standalone thing. You can't resume platforming until you defeat the enemy. It feels completely artificial.
 
Third is the level design. You go through a stage, do a bunch of platforming, then get to the boss fight and win. Cool! But suddenly the level is "cleansed" and repopulated with light seeds. You must accumulate light seeds to unlock later areas. So sooner or later you are going to have to do the EXACT SAME platforming sequence again to collect all the light seeds in that area. 
 
Finally there is the difficulty. No, I am not talking about the thing where if you miss a jump Elika saves you, which I didn't consider to be a big deal. (That's how death and auto checkpoints work in most games nowadays anyway.) Rather, the fights are impossible to lose UNLESS YOU ARE ACTUALLY TRYING. Whenever a boss does too much damage to you, Elika will use her magic to heal you. The only drawback is the boss is healed as well. In this situation there is absolutely no sense of excitement or accomplishment to the combat. 
 
I really wanted to like this game. But it doesn't add up to an engaging experience. There are so many good games these days -- Prince of Persia just doesn't have much to offer.

4 Comments
Posted by Dudacles

Nice review, I'm gonna recommend it.

Posted by aliss
@dudacles: yeah, thanks! :)
Posted by Xanth93

Can't recommend this based on only six hours of gameplay. It hits the right points, but at the same time, it's not based on the full experience.

Posted by El_Galant

I feel exactly the same way about this game. I always finish games I start to play, even really bad ones, but this game just has too much downtime in it. I found myself losing interest after 'cleansing' the 4th land, and saw it was just too repetitive and I got lost several times not knowing where to go. Had their actually been more fighting in the game and not all 90% platforming I would have gutted it out. Good thing I have GameFly so I'm not going to waste time on this when I could be playing a better game so I just sent it back. Bad games I beat are Constantine and Van Helsing on the PS2. This game is the worst one I've played on a next gen system by far.

Other reviews for Prince of Persia (PlayStation 3)

    Not Your Parents' Prince Anymore 0

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    A beautiful game in every sense of the word. 0

    I go way back with the Prince of Persia series. I played the SNES port of the original side-scrolling game, and I absolutely hated it. Then I played Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time for the PC, and I was absolutely blown away. Superb graphics, beautiful art-direction, and a great story-book plot made The Sands of Time a great game. Then, Warrior Within came along. I started playing the game when it first came out, and I stopped as soon as that terrible hard-rock guitar music kicked in. The di...

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