Prince of Persia : the Two Thrones
Reviewed By: Ryan Lingle
VOLUNTEER GUEST REVIEWER
GAME TECH INFO
Computer Platform: Game Cube, PS2, PC, Xbox
Produced by: Ubisoft
Price Range: $40-50
Learning curve time: 31-60 min.
Age level: Teen to Adult
ESRB Rating: M (Mature)
Christian Rating: 3 of 5
Gameplay: 5 of 5
Violence: 2 of 5
Adult Content: 4 of 5
Prince of Persia: the Two Thrones has received some of the most diverse responses of any game this year. It has pleased thousands of fans of the Sands of Time series, and disappointed quite a few as well. For some, such as myself, it brought back the beauty of the game that Warrior Within lacked. This review will discuss the ups and downs of the game without spoiling anything for anyone who hasn't played it. PLEASE NOTE that I have included a quick summary of Warrior Within for those who, like myself, chose not to play it due to its plethora of unpleasant content and its poor engineering.
Summary of WW:
After the events of Sands of Time, the Prince has been haunted for years. By changing the timeline, he had a debt to pay with Fate. He travels to the Island of Time in an attempt to stop the Sands from ever being created. While there, he is repeatedly chased by the Dahaka (Fate personified). He meets the Empress of Time, who is part of the Sands themselves, who eventually decides that she wishes to change her fate as well. The Prince succeeds in his mission, and returns home with his new love, Kaileena (the Empress). However, he did not realize that taking her away from the island would soon make matters worse than ever…
Now, on with the Two Thrones!!!
The game in general:
The story is simply amazing. For those of you who were in awe at the end of the Sands of Time, this does not disappoint. It's not quite equal to SoT, but it's definitely good. The Prince returns to Babylon to find it ravaged by an unimaginable guest. The game unfolds into a quest to win back his kingdom while fighting against none other than himself. The Prince now has a 'dark side' who tries to manipulate him into doing its own will. The Prince is no longer cocky, just desperate to save his father's kingdom.
My one and only complaint with the story is that there wasn't a clear explanation of the significance of the Two Thrones. You can figure it out (especially when you unlock the picture galleries), but they still should have explained it better.
All the good stuff from SoT (minus the ability to freeze enemies), and the only good things from WW, and then some. I won't reiterate on the Prince's gameplay, other than the notably seamless addition of Speed Kills. Once you master the technique, you will love the game SO much more!
The main difference in gameplay is when you play as the Dark Prince. He's stronger, faster, and his Daggertail weapon is nothing short of amazing. As the dark prince you have new abilities both in and out of battle. You can swing from lamps, attack enemies from above, and fight from a further distance than as the normal Prince. But be quick! You health gradually deteriorates when you're the Dark Prince (you'll learn why when you play)!
One annoying thing is when smashing pots and baskets, your 3-swing combo is pretty slow. Not too bad, though.
The graphics are astounding, to put it lightly. The movie cut-scenes are gorgeous (though you may occasionally notice a slight lag in frame-rate). Though most of the game involves drab, colorless locations, it sets the perfect mood for the game, something that Warrior Within failed to achieve. The lighting effects are nearly flawless, and the amount of detail is tremendous.
Sound is great. The music is right on the money, the voice acting is wonderful, and clashes and crashes are great, though a little loud at times.
The graphics did, however, lag quite a bit every time I transformed between the Prince and his evil alter ego.
Everything is pretty much the same as the Sands of Time. Nothing is meant to press religious views, though some may find the whole idea of the Sand of Time and related subjects to be offensive.
As for the Dark Prince, some have condemned this game as demonic, but I encourage you to look into it a bit more. The Dark Prince is not a good thing. He is the 'bad' side of the Prince, trying to take him over and corrupt him, nearly succeeding at times. Does this not happen within all of us? We all have a 'bad' side that corrupts us. As you progress through the game, you will see how much the Dark Prince is not meant to be praised. The ending is sure to please many Christians who are willing to think deeper about things. I gave the game an 'in-between' score in this area, as it is applicable to Christians, but not meant to be.
The rating didn't lie about the 'intense violence.' This is a highly violent game. Lots of cutting, slashing and stabbing of terrible sand creatures. It was also rated 'M' for 'blood and gore,' but you have the option to turn the blood off, which also mellows down the dismemberment. The Dark Prince uses his Daggertail to dispose of his enemies in some gruesome ways, and the Prince's Speed Kills may occasionally make you cringe (of course, you're not required to perform them other than in boss fights). The Two Thrones is NOT for the squeamish.
This irks me SO much. The ESRB rating states that the game contains nudity, but it DOESN'T. I am truly pleased that it does not contain such garbage, but I am bugged that it's rated the way it is. The only thing even remotely suggestive is the 5 seconds that you see Kaileena, the sides of her dress are a bit revealing, but nothing like in Warrior Within. There is NO nudity, there is NO sexual content whatsoever. The only thing to be concerned about is what others will think of you playing a game that they think has nudity in it, which is definitely something to be concerned about. But as for the game, there is ZERO sexual content, and for that I am glad.
Also there is no foul language. I think at one point the Dark Prince attempted to call the Prince a bad name, but he got interrupted.
Year of Release—2005
This game is highly recommended to older teens and adults who can handle lots of intense swordplay. It ends the trilogy beautifully, and does not disappoint.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this Christian Spotlight review are those of the reviewer (both ratings and recommendations), and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Films for Christ or the Christian Answers Network.
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