Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown Update and Review:
- Initial Release Date: Launches on January 18, 2024.
- Platforms/Users: For Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC – and players with a Ubisoft+ subscription, or who purchase the Digital Deluxe Edition, can start playing Sargon’s adventure right away.
- Series: Prince of Persia
- Genres: Platform game, Action-adventure game
- Publisher: Ubisoft
- Developers: Ubisoft, Ubisoft Montpellier
- Composers: Gareth Coker, Mentrix
Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown Review
The Prince of Persia series, with its incredible legacy spanning decades, has truly hit its peak with the latest gem, “Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown.”I can’t help but feel sorry for myself for missing out on all those years as someone who is just now discovering the wonderful universe of this franchise. I was engrossed in this game for hours on end, hooked by its captivating story of exhilarating platforming, deft combat moves, and a rich Metroidvania experience skillfully woven together by Ubisoft Montpellier.
The divergence of “The Lost Crown” from the conventional Prince of Persia protagonist is what makes it so fascinating. Instead, the game introduces a fresh perspective, inviting players to explore a narrative that takes an unexpected turn from the classic Prince of Persia role.
Instead, you control Sargon, one of the seven Immortals, elite warriors entrusted with protecting Persia and its royal figures. The story kicks off with the kidnapping of Prince Ghassan, propelling Sargon and his team into the labyrinthine adventure on Mount Qaf, the sole setting for the entire game.
Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown’s free demo is available now on all platforms! While you download it, come watch us show off never-before-seen gameplay right now on https://t.co/qsHW1TnJRV!— Prince of Persia™ (@princeofpersia) January 11, 2024
The 21-hour journey through Mount Qaf became a memorable exploration of various biomes, secrets, and shortcuts. While the foggy map revealing its interconnected hallways and hidden chambers was a treat, a more efficient fast-travel system could have alleviated occasional backtracking concerns.
The combat system in The Lost Crown stands among the genre’s best. Starting simple with a focus on parrying, it evolves into a sophisticated system encompassing ground attacks, air combos, projectile combo extenders, and more. Hidden amulets with special properties and Athra Surges add layers to customization and combat strategy, making every encounter unique.
The platforming sections, quick to respawn with instant resets, offer a challenging yet rewarding experience. Navigating through tough sections leads to valuable rewards, enhancing Sargon’s abilities or unveiling hidden surprises. The robust suite of accessibility options, allowing players to tailor the experience, showcases Ubisoft Montpellier’s commitment to inclusivity and innovation.
Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown Gameplay
Graphically, on current-gen consoles, The Lost Crown runs seamlessly at 120 frames per second with a 4K resolution. Although the art style, featuring picturesque backdrops and painterly environments, didn’t entirely resonate with me, the overall visual experience in motion is undeniably impressive.
But let’s delve beyond the initial skepticism and explore whether “The Lost Crown” is a triumphant return to the kingdom of Persia.
1. A Unique Vision
The game’s director, Mounir Radi, opted for a bold and surprising approach, choosing a high-energy rap song for the trailer that raised eyebrows. The unconventional choice, while divisive, set the tone for an experience that aims to be distinctly different.
2. The 2.5-D Format
Embracing the 2.5-D format, where the world appears three-dimensional but gameplay unfolds on a 2-D plane, “The Lost Crown” takes inspiration from successful titles like “Rayman Legends.” This decision, though met with resistance, promises deep platforming, intense combat, and strategic gameplay.
3. Resisting Tradition
Despite knowing the craving for a 3-D adventure, the development team under Abdelhak Elguess decided to forge ahead with the side-scrolling format. The result is a game that, while defying expectations, showcases ultraprecise platforming, dynamic combat, and intricate level design.
4. Metroidvania Influence
Radi’s ambition for “The Lost Crown” was to embrace the Metroidvania style, celebrating player cleverness through backtracking and exploration. The additions of an innovative feature — the ability to capture in-game screenshots for reference — enhance the overall Metroidvania experience.
5. Rich Persian Lore
While not as expansive as previous entries, “The Lost Crown” is a visually stunning and lore-rich journey into Persian mythology. Boss battles against legendary creatures like the manticore and Azhdaha add depth and authenticity to the Prince of Persia experience.
6. Character Development and Nuanced Storytelling
Surprisingly, “The Lost Crown” doesn’t shy away from character development and psychological nuance, even within the side-scrolling genre. The story, centered around the kidnapping of the Persian prince and the elite team of bodyguards led by the ambitious Sargon, unfolds with unexpected depth.
7. Innovative Features
The game introduces an original feature that has garnered praise — the ability to take in-game screenshots pinned to map locations. This not only enhances the Metroidvania experience but also showcases the developer’s commitment to player engagement.
8. Scope and Realization
While not the largest in scope, “The Lost Crown” is a beautifully realized adventure, filled with intricate details and drawing inspiration from Persian mythology. Most importantly, it manages to recapture the essence of Prince of Persia.
Conclusion: The Crown Restored
“Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown” may have sparked initial skepticism, but beneath the surface lies a game that defies expectations and, in many ways, revitalizes the Prince of Persia series. The combination of the 2.5-D format, Metroidvania influence, and a commitment to rich storytelling makes this installment a worthy addition to the royal legacy. Prepare to be enthralled by a Persian adventure that, against the odds, feels undeniably like Prince of Persia.
While the story unfolds with surprising twists, it occasionally takes a backseat, leaving me longing for a more compelling narrative. Yet, this minor drawback did little to diminish the overall enjoyment of the game.
The Lost Crown’s irresistible pull kept me glued to the controller, urging me to explore Mount Qaf further. Its seamless integration of first-rate platforming, engaging combat, and satisfying progression forms a sublime gaming loop. In this Prince of Persia installment, gameplay reigns supreme, making it a must-play for both series veterans and newcomers alike.