Prince of Persia
Well, that was quick. Nintendo announced Prince of Persia was coming sometime this summer at E3, and here it is. Find out of this port of the classic game is worth its asking price in the full review after the break.
Prince of Persia
Developer: Ed Magnin and Associates
Publisher: Red Orb Entertainment
Original Release Date: 1999
After last week’s treat of a game, I must say my initial reaction to Prince of Persia starting up on my 3DS was…lacking to say the least. This port, while faithful to the original, most definitely shows its age. The story itself is subpar, if not cliché to the old trope of “The damsel is in distress, you must save her. And you have exactly one hour to do so.” That’s right folks, the game literally limits itself to one hour of playtime to save the girl.
Sound is excruciatingly grating at times, in fact it boils down to roughly 10 sound effects and at most 5 music tracks ported straight from the original PC release, and if you can believe it, the music is a downgrade from the original 1989 video game.
Graphics really under use the Game Boy Color’s palette, but are extremely fluid, especially sword fighting. This is by no means no improvement, the original was just as fluid when it was first released thanks to the rotoscoping that was used to animate the game, but by no means offer any improvement whatsoever over the original.
Gameplay harkens to a simpler time, and I do mean that in the most sterile way possible. I will give Red Orb this: it is a faithful reproduction of the original, but for an 11 year old game re-released on modern software, Prince of Persia most certainly could have been given some upgrades here and there. Movement seems to be haphazard at times, and you’ll thank the 3DS for its restore point functionality because you will need it. Far too many times did my head explond in rage over a difficult jump, or the hero taking just one too many steps and running right off a cliff. Hit detection for fighting also seemed to be off a fair amount and led to a few too many rage inducing moments.
Replay value for this title is essentially non-existent. As I mentioned, you have 60 minutes to save the princess. That’s it. If you do it, congratulations! You beat the game! As a reward you will be now known as the Prince of Persia, and…a title screen! Seriously, that’s it. Nothing unlocks, you basically have the option to run through the exact same game you just did, with no added benefit whatsoever.
If Prince of Persia is one of your absolute favourite games from way back, this version offers a compact and fairly faithful reproduction that you can take with you on the go. By all means pick this up if you are a collector, but for everyone else, I have to be honest. Avoid this game like it would give you a bad venereal disease, especially for Nintendo’s asking price.