Oh, Ubisoft. You got so carried away by the hype and accolades of Assassin’s Creed that you entirely forgot about a certain franchise that defined your company back in the early 2000s. Prince of Persia is a series that many fans like myself have been asking for a true comeback (and not that weird cell-shaded but admittedly fun reboot either). While the gaming industry has moved forward and now are basically roommates with the Assassin’s Creed series, I’m here to solemnly remind everyone of the greatness that was once the Prince of Persia games and why they are in desperate need of a comeback.
Prince of Persia really hit its stride for me in the early 2000s which seemed to have pumped out hit after hit in the series, beginning with The Sands of Time; a tremendous platforming action/adventure that cleverly used the manipulation of time to great and ingenious effect. The Sands of Time is still widely considered as the best in the series and one of the best games of all time, but I’d personally throw my opinion in favour of the extremely gritty and completely badass sequel, Warrior Within, which pretty much refined everything in The Sands of Time to perfection while ramping up the difficulty level. Between Warrior Within and Devil May Cry, I really should’ve been some prodigal gaming god back then if I managed to beat them over and over again. The Two Thrones closed off the trilogy in a pretty awesome way for which I will not spoil, but see it for yourself.
So why do we specifically need that kind of Prince of Persia game back? I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt, gamers will gravitate towards those nostalgic titles than the reboot or the aptly named The Forgotten Sands, which pretty much slammed the nail in the coffin for the series and showed Ubisoft at their most luridly apathetic towards Prince of Persia after smelling that Assassin’s Creed money. However, those games also proved to be one of the best and kinda overlooked trilogies in games that probably doesn’t warrant a sequel, but a definitive remaster or ground-up remake is long overdue. Perhaps they might even pull a new God of War and mix up the gameplay for the better.
Prince of Persia is the cool alternative to all those hack and slash games your grandmother refused to buy you as a kid because it had the words “Devil” and “God” in the titles, but also because it remained a staple action/adventure game for many of us who enjoyed the crafty gameplay mechanics and amazing sense of style that the games brought to the table. Why the reboot failed is for that reason specifically; nobody wanted a cell-shaded, part-comedy from the Prince of Persia games. We just wanted some dual swords, rewind abilities, an army of bodies to carve up, and some Godsmack on the side… or I guess I, uh, stand alone on that.