- Publisher: Ubisoft
- Developer: Ubisoft Montreal
- ESRB Rating: “T" for Teen
- Genre: Third-Person-Action
- Pros: Great puzzles; fun precision platforming; decent combat
- Cons: Very short; very easy; so-so graphics & sound
The Forgotten Sands takes place between the Sands of Time and Warrior Within games, which means it stars the same Prince from the PS2/Xbox/GC Prince of Persia trilogy rather than the wise ass Prince from 2008's series reboot. In this game, the Prince decides to pay his brother Malik a visit only to find his kingdom overrun by an invading army. In order to protect his people, Malik decides to unleash a legendary army born from the sand that had once belonged to the great King Solomon centuries prior. It turns out it wasn't Solomon's army, however, but an army sent to kill Solomon. Now the only way to save the kingdom and lock the army of sandy skeleton warriors away is to unite two pieces of a seal - one held by the Prince and one held by Malik. Of course, things don't go quite that easily.
The other part of the gameplay is combat, and it is surprisingly easy compared to the Warrior Within and The Two Thrones games. Instead of having lots of precise moves, this game is more button-mashy where you just sort of hack away at enemies until they go down. I like that the game throws dozens of enemies at you at once, but they are so easy to fight that there really isn't any tension in it. It is fun, just not very satisfying. You do gain access to elemental powers, but the combat is easy enough you don't really need to use them.
Graphically, The Forgotten Sands is pretty lackluster. It uses a realistic style, similar to the last-gen PoP trilogy, but is seriously lacking in detail. The environments are kind of bland and ugly and the character models aren't very good. The animation is also sort of jerky and not smooth. Compared to the gorgeous cel-shaded PoP 2008, it is a pretty huge step down in terms of visuals.
The sound is a little better. Good sound effects and decent, if not forgettable music. The voice acting is quite good overall, and the Prince in particular is well acted.
Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands does everything well enough to be fun, but not well enough to really stand out. The platforming is pretty awesome, but nothing new. The story is predictable. The combat is easy and boring, but still kind of fun. And the presentation is kind of a mess. The result is a game that is enjoyable at the time, but you'll forget it as soon as you beat it. I will say this - I think fans of the original Sands of Time trilogy will get more out of it than people who preferred the 2008 reboot (like myself), but even they will find a too easy, too short, too familiar game that is hard to justify paying full price for. It is a solid and fun rental, but I can't recommend it for a purchase.