Prince of Persia Trilogy Reader Review
The Prince of Persia Trilogy. You know, it's really, really hard to make a case for you to NOT go out, buy it and enjoy one of the most imaginative trilogies on the market.
So guess what? I'm not going to bother.
What I will say is this. All of the games have... well. They have aged and there's no getting away from that. Warrior Within is also still the worst of the three. But with Sands of Time and The Two Thrones in there, that really doesn't matter. It's not awful, just... it's the one game in the trilogy that feels like the odd one out. You know, you meet some friendly triplets and two of them turn out to be gorgeous blondes with great fashion sense and one ends up dying her hair black and going through a Goth phase. Not the end of the world. Just odd.
So, let's start on the obvious. The Sands of Time trilogy introduced us to the mechanic of rewinding time to correct your mistakes. The Prince of Persia initially sets out on a path of honour, to take the prize of the Maharaja's palace. Sadly, this happens to be the aforementioned Sands of Time, which said Maharaja nicked from the Island of Time. Prince is tricked into opening them. This starts three games where the Prince, controlled by us, gets to muck around with the very fabric of time itself. It's a simple concept, executed beautifully.
What makes the series is the stylistic acrobatics. Each handles like a dream, and sees you leaping about from pillars and platforms, running along and up walls, hacking up those possessed by the (evil?) sands and generally trying to prevent the Prince from suffering the fate that he was destined to have. The fact that since many games have adopted the same acrobatic concept is a testament to how brilliantly the format works. The Sands of Time trilogy demonstrated, and still does, that platforming segments need not be down to luck, or be fidgety or unforgiving. See the transition from Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness to Legend and Anniversary for an example of how heavily the Prince of Persia series has changed how we see adventuring.
However, each game has it's faults. The Sands of Time was an amazing demonstration of the acrobatic beauty in it's early stages, but the combat ended up being the same move over and over again to win. Warrior Within was just stylistically off the chain, dark and broody and not a hint of the humour. It also had better combat, but slightly shoddier adventuring. The Two Thrones does both, introduces the stealth kill system, but by removing the flaws it really shows that too much of a good thing does make a game a little too easy.
But back to the point. You can buy all three games, all three of these brilliant games, in one shiny bundle for less than £20. We buy games with less than half the longevity than this for nearly twice the price. Why? It makes absolutely no sense! These games will last for ages, and yes they have aged. Yes, they've been ripped off now more times than Mario 64... no, that's an exaggeration (but only just!). But the storytelling is still as strong as ever, the games are as easy to get into as they ever were, and with all three in one shiny package you can play from start to finish and enjoy the full effect of the trilogy.
Of course, most people will have played all three. If you haven't, skip the score - for you, it's 11 out of 10 and you should stop being a cheapskate and BUY IT NOW! If you've since parted with them, the trilogy still offers remarkable value for money and is a worthy addition to any collection, if only to remind youself that this series really will be remembered long into the future. And if you dislike them... well. You're just dead inside and we have little more to discuss.
Less than £20 for three good games in one package is a steal any day of the week. When two of those happen to be awesome games, it's daylight robbery.
What I'm trying to say is, The Prince of Persia Trilogy pack is simply the most fun you can get on a console these days for under £20. If you've missed out, it's a dead cert that you'll love each one of them. And for those of us who had since parted with our copies, it's a cheap but potent reminder that this series survived the poor sales of the first game for a reason - because it was bloody genius.
Oh, score... well, each one alone would get less than 10 (9, 8 and 9 respectively). However, three games of this quality and this length for such a tiny price, how can you give it less than a 10? It's a bargain. It's a steal. And having gone through them all again, I feel a faint glow of happiness once more.
If only I could go back in time so I could re-experience these games once more...
10 / 10