I finally beat: Prince of Persia Classic

PoP Achievment

I finally beat: Prince of Persia Classic

Delayed, I know, but I did beat it a couple of months ago. In short order, even. It came out. I played it and had it done in just a day or two.

Shut up. I know it is “just an hour long.”

Well, Prince of Persia Classic hit Live just a while ago. A remake of quite an old game. Does it sand up to the test of time? <See that intential typo there?>

Yes! Prince of Persia Classic is a great game. Made by Gameloft, the developer in charge of the great Prince of Persia cellphone games, that I thought could do no wrong…

until I saw their work on Assassin’s Creed DS videos at Kotaku. I’ll reserve final judgement on that until I get to play it, but seriously, those videos look like Oprah Winfrey’s ass <reminder>Her nickname is “the Big O”</reminder>

Now, you may think there is no way to wash that terrible image out of your head, but there is. Just download Prince of Persia Classic for xbLive arcade and play for 20 minutes a day. Yes, there is a save feature/checkpoint system so now you can resume your progress if sitting for a solid hour is just too much of a time commitment for you, you pompus, self-important prick.

The classic levels are all here and hold up well. If you somehow still have them memorized from your childhood then you will find new control tricks introduced to make the game feel different. You can wall hop, roll, and various other activities the Sands of Time Prince has been capable of his last three adventures. None of these break the game, and none of them are necessary. You can get by on the old moves; these just let you shave a few seconds off the clock here and there. If you do not have the levels memorized from your childhood, be prepared to die.

And die a lot.

Games of yester-year were hard. Damn hard. Most could be beaten in 20-30 minutes if you knew what you were doing. How do you stretch that out? You kill the player. Now imagine a game from that era where the only penalty of death was restarting the current level. There was no limit on the number of times you could die, only that you lost some time with each death and had to beat the game within the 60 minute time limit. The traps are easily avoidable (reflex wise) once you know they are there, so to stretch this out the game kills you every 15 steps (roughly twice per screen). Did you just make it through a room without a death the first time around? Don’t worry. One of the subsequent times you run through that room you WILL find the trap waiting there, and it will hurt/kill you.

The other way to meet an untimely end is via a Castle Guard. Sword fighting was quite easy in the intial adventure. Up blocked. Shift attacked. Once you had the timing down for one guard, you could kill any of them without ever getting hit. The threat came from if any ever hit you without your sword out, it was instant death, and that reaching some guards required you to jump right next to them without the sword, quickly pull it, and begin the attack. In this version, Guards are not so easy. In fact, I cannot tell you exactly how to beat any of the bastards. One moment they are impaling me on their sword and kicking my corpse off of it, the next I’m swiftly blocking and counter attacking: kicking the crap out of him. Just when I think “Hey! I’ve finally got this down.” the next guard swiftly dispatches me and puts me back at the checkpoint. Worse still, as I make my way back to the guard that killed me, a previously easy guard cuts my head off.

This game would be a rip off at $40. But it isn’t $40. It is $10 thanks to digital distrobution of true microtitles. This is how EVERY remake on xbLive should be handled. Revamped graphics. Improved gameplay. Fun. Go download it, and MAYBE other developers will remake more of our beloved classics in the same way. Or simply reward a development house that got it right. It is the kind of game that makes you pay for xbla games despite that shitastic DRM that is smeared all over them.

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