A few of you may have caught Colette’s post yesterday featuring a walkthrough of a level from Ubisoft’s upcoming current-gen Prince of Persia game, aptly titled…Prince of Persia. The video, from the 2008 Games Convention in Leipzig, was a shade under four minutes long, and it included a voiceover in German that explained the on-screen action for the (presumably mostly German) crowd. I don’t know about you, but since my name isn’t Fana7ic, I don’t understand German, and frankly, I found the narration rather distracting (it didn’t help that the narrator took up the bottom left corner of the screen.
Thankfully, Ubisoft has sent over the direct-feed footage, and not only is it sans German narrator, it’s also significantly longer than yesterday’s video! This one clocks in at just over seven minutes, and it’s chock full of magic-enhanced, acrobatic platforming goodness.
So far, the game looks absolutely beautiful. First off, the more current-gen games with color, the better (as far as I’m concerned) — and secondly, I think the cel-shaded characters are a great way to freshen up the look of the franchise. More after the jump.
We also learn some details on the game’s story and mechanics from the footage. The Prince isn’t goth/emo anymore like he was in Warrior Within (and parts of The Two Thrones), thank goodness — he now seems to have taken on a Nathan Drake-like personality, with sarcastic and witty wisecracking like “Don’t say it’s quiet. Don’t ever say it’s quiet.” He’s not beyond being charming and kind, though, as evinced by his obvious care for the well-being of his fairy-esque companion, Elika.
The evil dude/force this time around is named Ahramain (AH-rih-men), and he appears to have turned the area into a dark, desolate place where no foliage can grow. You’re tasked with, among other things, bringing light to the world, something that Elika helps you out with. Seeing her turn a sandy landscape into a meadow reminded me of what John Coffey does in The Green Mile — how he heals someone and then has to spit out the “bad” stuff. And the fight with the mini-boss who just won’t stay dead, the Hunter, seems much more fun now that Elika’s around to spice up the combat (and platforming — that co-op jump looks mighty useful).
I’m very much looking forward to Prince of Persia. The last-gen games — Warrior Within aside; I never played much of it and was told that I wasn’t missing much anyway — are some of my favorite action platformers of all time, and Ubisoft looks to have restored most of what I loved about The Sands of Time while updating the series enough to keep it from getting stale. Q4 2008 can’t come soon enough!