Are you tired of boring combat? Tired of having to reload after
you die? Well, fret no more. UbiSoft has the game for you. With the
latest installment of your favorite Middle Eastern nobleman,
“Prince of Persia: Sands of Time,” Ubisoft finally
gives gamers what they want: an easy way to take back a mistake
without having to reload. However, offering a complete package of
enjoyable gameplay and scenic environs, the game’s greatness
is not contingent on this unique temporal manipulation.

Kate Green
Courtesy of UbiSoft
Keetah mi pharos, aja nilo.

Armed with a magical dagger, aptly named the Sands of Time, our
intrepid prince can stop, slow, accelerate and even move back in
time. Replete with this dagger and his trusty scimitar, the prince
sets out to destroy, via acrobatic combat worthy of the best
Hollywood wire fight scene, the sand creatures that have overrun
the kingdom.

On their way to righting the wrong you unwittingly committed
upon releasing the Sands of Time in the first place, players battle
with hordes of mindless, zombiesque sand creatures. With a handy
magical dagger, you smite these foes and take back the sands, which
can then manipulate time. You’re joined in your quest by
Farah, the daughter of the maharaja from whom you stole the
dagger.

The somewhat simple story takes place in a wonderful world of
soft lighting and picturesque settings. The prince’s ability
to run on walls, flip gracefully over enemies and trek through
magnificently rendered environments make “Sands” one of
the most aesthetically pleasing games in recent memory. The game
reaches a near-cinematic beauty as you navigate treacherous traps,
solve various puzzles and duel deadly foes.

The only downside is its short length. While the first time
through may take you 10 to 12 hours to safely plot a course through
the palace, choosing to play it a second time will probably only
take you slightly longer than half that time. Despite the
relatively short length, the wonderful combat and creative
acrobatics, which set the bar for the upcoming Tecmo release
“Ninja Gaiden,” make “Sands” a worthwhile
purchase for any action/adventure fan. And for those who want a
little more out of their games, the developer has even cleverly
hidden a playable port of the original version of “Prince of
Persia” within “Sands of Time.” Play
“Prince of Persia: Sands of Time” and enjoy an updated
classic of this storied franchise.

Rating: 4 1/2 stars

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