Prince of Persia

2010-12-12 16:32:24

The new Prince of Persia, how far have we come? I recall the original being ball crushingly unforgiving, a dominatrix of a game. Not only did you have to leap 100% correctly, avoid combat where possible and otherwise have perfect execution of combat, not to mention having premonition as to when the next flaying trap would eviscerate you, you also had a time limit that kept ticking right through death. It was possible to actually get to the end of the game and still lose because you simply took too damn long! That's how badass that game was, it wasn't for the sissy boys and their new shiny consoles, it was for god like gamers, or gamers looking to become godlike by repeated kicks to the nuts until they obtained mastery.

The new Prince of Persia is so far removed from that lineage that I demand a DNA test to prove they are even remotely related. The new prince of persia begins with you being chased by some guards being the roguish prince that you are. Eventually you stumble upon a princess who has magic powers. turns out some djinn's are doing some nasty magic on the world and are sucking all the life force from it, and now you have to help this princess who saved you from the guard and is pretty hot looking to get shit back from the brink. This is a pretty standard plot so far, and to accomplish the goal you have to do some of the things you did in all the other Prince of Persias. Jumping Puzzles mostly.

So the main goal in the game is essentially to navigate these hugely complex 3d puzzles do some swords and sorcery against some boss figure at the top of the puzzle, use the Princesses restorative magic to return the area to lush greenery and beauty, she collapses, and you dash away to the next location. Some of the 3d puzzle jumping can look pretty heroic and death defying, and if you were to watch someone doing it right it would be quite an entertaining show.

What fucks the whole thing up is when you do it wrong, and you will, a lot. So anytime our hero the Prince takes an accidental dive or leap where he should not have, the princess pull some kind of miraculous bullshit the flings you both back to the point just before you fucked up. She can do this limitlessly, no matter what the situation. So essentially there is no need to fear the jumping puzzles, merely instead to get angry as you see time and time again the princess fling you back to safety. If she has this kind of power why doesn't she help fling you toward the goal you were trying to reach? if she has this kind of awesome floating and flipping ability why does she even need you to begin with? It quickly becomes a parade of bullshit and takes all of the intensity out of the game. What is the point of playing a game you can never lose? that's like playing a game of Team Deathmatch against bots who can't move or shoot. Great good job you slayed the entire enemy team, not like they were any kind of challenge, it's not like you could have possibly lost.

Being the competitive angry gamer that I am, I can't abide by a game holding my hand and not occassionally letting my dumbass fall into a pit of spikes never to return until a black box appears with an option to continue at some relative checkpoint, preferably not 10 miles behind, but not right where I fucked up either. It's just a way that this game caters to youth, and the casual community. While having a mode that does that and having a "hardcore" mode would seem logical, not having something to quench the hardcores thirst will only make them ditch the title. Even more so when the series has had a history of being balls out hardcore.

Reason Rating
Start 10
Graphics are pretty good, great contrast between badlands and lush greenery +3
Lack of challenge as the game holds your hand anytime you should be dead and gives you a second chance at every jump without checkpoints or risk. -10
Some of the control methods for handling certain puzzles will ensure that you miss your target enough times that the above reason becomes fucking annoying -2
Even combat scenarios are a cakewalk as the game practically tells you how to defeat every boss. -3
What's there a lot of that every gamer hates? QTE's! -2
Final -4/10

-4 is the score. This game is crap compared to the originals, I'd rather play PoP on XBLA than pay 60 bucks for this title when it was new. I suppose if you're a casual gamer more concerned with getting stoned and zoning out than having a heart racing experience, enjoy, I'm throwing this game back in the sleeve and bidding it farewell forever.