Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown

The Prince of Persia saga began in the late ’80s as a methodical platformer with mazes and dungeons, but most fans remember it mainly from the intense adventure games of the 2000s. Many are looking forward to the long-awaited “remake” The sands of Time, but that wasn’t the true comeback of the franchise. His return to the front pages came with a radically different title. Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown Not only is it a very good Metroidvania – a 2D game with an interconnected map – but it’s also one of the best modern examples of the genre, and in this review I’ll explain why it’s considered the first great video game of 2024.

The first surprise that this game gives us is that, unlike all other parts of the series, we do not control the titular prince. Our main character is Sargon, a member of the “Immortals” – an elite unit of the Persian army responsible for rescuing the heir to the empire.

There are some very interesting elements to this story. There are hints of the absurdity of royal bloodlines and power struggles, but I wasn’t convinced. Since I’m going to be praising this game later, let’s start talking about its weakest element.

Myths and legends of Iran

Thanks to movies, comics, literature and video games, we are well acquainted with the gods and creatures of Greek and Norse mythology, but still very few study the traditions and folklore of other parts of the world. The Middle East is one of the richest regions in culture, but in general we know little about its legends, with the exception of the jinn, poorly translated as “geniuses”. The real history of the region is also fascinating. Seeing the excellent historical fiction work that Ubisoft has done with their series of games Assassin’s Creed and the way they let us know about real events, I expected something like this from Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown. Unfortunately, everything was not like that.

The game’s plot has some basis in real history and mythology. It chronicles the conflicts with the Kushan Empire and features historical figures such as King Darius I and Queen Tomyris. But it does so in a way that makes no chronological sense and incomprehensibly changes the role of historical figures. He also modifies figures from Iranian mythology, such as the blacksmith Kaveh, transformed here into the goddess Kaheva. At least legendary creatures like the Simurgh bird, the manticore, and the azhdah stay true to their roots.

Of course, This is an entertaining work and does not require historical rigor. – especially if the changes are aimed at creating an interesting plot – but this is a missed opportunity. The story is unnecessarily complicated, and these changes only make it more confusing.

As you might expect, there is a hidden reason for the prince’s kidnapping. Mount Kaf, where he is taken, based on the mythological Mount Kafkuh, is a place where time flows differently. The past, present and future intertwine, revealing secrets and conspiracies about the crown of Persia. There are betrayals and big reveals, but none of them cause the story to abandon its predictable progression. Some of the characters’ goals are confusing, and some of the mystical elements left us with a lot of questions.

Of course, many believe that plot is one of the least important elements of a Metroidvania. Whether this will affect the gameplay depends on the expectations of each player. I expected more from the story, but that didn’t stop me from thoroughly enjoying Sargon’s adventures.

Exploration and battles on Mount Qaf

Maybe the story is about Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown I didn’t like it, but the points I lost were regained thanks to its fantastic gameplay. Sargon controls with agility and precision, especially in fights that require us to pay close attention to the enemy’s movements in order to know when to attack, dodge, and when to use the appropriate block.

Among the skills we acquire as we progress are some classics from the Metroidvania genre, such as air acceleration and double jump. But there are others, very original ones. They are not only used to reach new areas on the map, but can also be used when encountering enemies.

The game does not “require” us to use these skills in battles, with the exception of some specific moments with some bosses. But if we dedicate ourselves to perfecting our way of fighting, we can pull off combos that wouldn’t envy Dante or Bayonetta. Just look at this example provided by streamer GameBreakerGod..

These skills translate well to script development. It’s less than what you’d expect from a Metroidvania, but it’s still great because of the speed at which it allows you to explore the map and the space it gives you to do extra things. The side missions and optional platform challenges are implemented very well so that we find them gradually and never feel overwhelming.

As in other games of this genre, we always find objects and routes that we cannot reach when we see them for the first time. Right here Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown reveals a simple mechanic, but which seems to be an absolute revolution in the “Metroidvania”. Memory fragments are objects that allow us to “insert” a screenshot into a portion of the map.. This is an evolution of the traditional marker system that makes it easier to know what we left behind and when we can return to it.

This is especially welcome since this is not an easy game. Even on Warrior difficulty (equivalent to Normal), I had trouble defeating some bosses and completing some platforming sequences.. I liked it because I like games that “make me suffer” so that success is more satisfying. But I know that not everyone thinks so, and this may turn off some players.

Fortunately, Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown It has a wide range of difficulty and accessibility options so that everyone, regardless of skill level, can enjoy the adventure. We can customize various aspects of combat and even enable the option to automatically skip challenges on the platform.

It’s like my Japanese anime!

I admit that at the beginning of the adventure I did not find the game particularly impressive in terms of graphics. The characters have truly incredible designs, and Sargon is particularly attractive, but the scripts feel too simple and somewhat repetitive on a visual level. But everything changed when I realized that the map was much larger than expected. Palaces with traditional Middle Eastern aesthetics and stereotypical forests have given way to caves with upside-down sandy waterfalls, ruins in the snow, terrifying catacombs and a level in the middle of the sea so impressive that I will refuse to describe it for fear of spoiling the surprise.

Another big surprise was the discovery the strong influence that “shounen anime” has on Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown. I’m not talking about the character and creature designs, but rather the combat cutscenes and special moves. These are incredible displays of light, energy blasts and exaggerated impacts that are nothing to envy. dragon ball neither for Naruto. Some opponents even have transformations. It’s strange that we don’t hear them shout out the names of their special moves mid-fight.

The combination of “anime” exaggeration with Middle Eastern aesthetics gives the game a distinct and original personality. We also appreciate that it has the option for dialogue in Farsi. Of course we regret the lack of Latin American Spanish dubbing.

I want to go back to Persia!

Although the story didn’t captivate me, I completely fell in love with this game after finishing the adventure.. Mount Qaf was a joy to explore, the combat was a lot of fun, and I already want Sargon to star in another game. Ubisoft Montpellier has already demonstrated its expertise in platformers by releasing some excellent games Rayman and it doesn’t surprise me that they understood the task of creating a “Metroidvania” so well.

It’s also nice to discover that this great game isn’t a mainstream “AAA” game. It’s clear that they put in the time, money and effort required to create a work of art, rather than the exaggerated budget that today’s “big titles” usually have and that makes them The video game industry is becoming an unsustainable business.. I pray that Ubisoft learns this lesson and decides to invest more in these quality AAA games. This can solve many of your problems.

I conclude this review by highly recommending that you give it a try. Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown. This is a great game and if you have any questions, you can use the free demo version. It’s also the perfect game to enter the world of Metroidvania. This is along with Hollow Knight And blasphemous 2– one of the best modern representatives of this genre.

Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown


Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown It’s a great Metroidvania with great exploration mechanics, exciting combat, and an original blend of Middle Eastern aesthetics with an anime style. There are some elements of the story that don’t come together very well, but the excellent gameplay and high but manageable difficulty level make up for this shortcoming. It kept me entertained for the nearly 20 hours it took me to get to the end, but I kept playing to get all the collectibles and also because I just wanted to continue discovering this world with Sargon.

This review of Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown is based on a digital copy of the game for PS5 provided by Ubisoft Latin America. The game is available for PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch and PC.

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