Ben Mattes, producer of the next instalment in the Prince of Persia series, has revealed our hero will be assisted throughout his adventures by a beautiful lady
Her name is Elika and she made her debut at the Ubidays conference in Paris this evening. She comes equipped with "revolutionary" AI and a lovely pair of eyes but she's "not just a love interest", according to Mattes. Elika, according to Mattes, is "a supporting character that's going to integrate into every element of gameplay". So she'll help you fight off enemies and pull off acrobatic stunts, and help you find your way when you get lost on your explorations.
"Elika is not going to be a burden," Mattes assured the Ubidays audience. "Players are not going to be dragging their heels and getting frustrated... She's always going to be a positive. Not only is she making the game better but she's not making the game worse, which is of course very important to us."
Of course, Elika's not the only star of the show. The Prince is back - or is he? "Our hero does not start as a prince," Mattes said. "He starts as a wanderer, an adventurer." Apparently our hero is all about earning a bit of cash wherever he can, and spending whatever he's got as soon as he gets it. This "defines his personality", according to Mattes, but as the game progresses he learns "the quest he is facing is literally to save the world, and seeing the evolution of his personality is a really neat thing for us to be able to do".
Mattes was keen to emphasise this is an "all-new Prince of Persia" and "a restart of the franchise". Yes, he continued, our hero still has spectacular acrobatic and combat abilities, and the development team recognises the way POP: Sands of Time "raised the bar" in terms of "innovative gameplay and engaging characters". But this game offers "a new prince, new characters and a new universe for a new gneration of consoles" - so "no more Sands of Time". "It certainly is one of the more controversial decisions we took," Mattes observed, "But I stand by it 100 per cent.
We'll be getting a closer look at the new Prince of Persia tomorrow, so expect more info soon.
Meanwhile, adventure over to our Prince of Persia gallery to see what Elika looks like.