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nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

red bird

Let’s Play Alan Wake's Shadows of the Falsebound Off-World Dinosaur Hunter Prince of Dead Space's Dragoon Resident Resistance Passage of Country Souls Radiance Sweeper Emblem Horizon Zone Sessions Trigger SpecOps Chronicles XIII-2: Evil International Edition Mystic Quest's Last Reward NP, starring Max Payne returns in: Off the Record - The Shattered Belkan War: Legacy
I Hate You (A Love Story) - Let’s Play Prince of Persia [2008]
Let’s Play Princess of Persia: The Ancillary Prince
Artix Returns: Let's Play Prince of Persia MMVIII
Game Over: Return of Crow - Let's Play Prince of Persia 2008: Epilogue




Or...


...Wait what?

Prince of Persia, also known as “Prince of Persia 2008”, is an action adventure / platforming / free running game released for the PlayStation3, Xbox 360, and PC in… wait for it… 2008. It was Ubisoft’s attempt to retool the PoP franchise for the new console generation and begin a new storyline after the conclusion of the wildly successful Sands of Time trilogy on the PlayStation2, Xbox, and Gamecube in the early 00’s. And I’m talking a ground-up reboot; new story, new setting, new characters, new gameplay, new art style, new gimmick, and most divisive of all, new “Prince”.






The game itself is looked down upon these days as a failure and a misstep for the franchise as a whole, somewhat unfairly in my opinion, as it was quite well received by critics at the time, and sold roughly 2.2 million copies within its first year of release according to Ubisoft. Though Ubisoft itself is a big reason as to why it’s looked down upon so much… Because it’s loving Ubisoft, come on now.

Following PoP 2008’s “failure” (imagined or otherwise), Ubisoft scrambled like mad to bring back “PoP Classic”, and released Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands in 2010 starring the Prince from the Sands of Time trilogy as a midquel wedged between Sands of Time and Warrior Within. At the same time, Disney released the Prince of Persia movie starring Jake Gyllenhaal and a bunch of other white people pretending to be Middle Eastern characters based on Sands of Time continuity rather than the 2008 one.

The message was pretty clear at that point. The 2008 franchise was dead, and Ubisoft was just praying you didn’t notice. …Though after the one-two punch of Forgotten Sands and the Sands of Time movie just merely being “okay”, the PoP franchise was more or less dead anyway.

Though what really happened was Assassin’s Creed started making money hand over fist for them, so they latched on to that teat and never let go.

But don’t get me wrong here, this game is not a maligned and forgotten masterpiece, there’s a lot of stuff wrong with it that you’ll be seeing over the course of the LP, but despite its flaws it’s still a pretty fun game overall. Compared to games today that are being released in unplayably broken states, like Ubisoft’s own Assassin’s Creed Unity, it’s actually a model of flawless game design.

With that said:

Update Schedule
I’m shooting to get one video out per week. Probably on either Monday or Tuesday evening, as we generally record commentary for each video on Sunday nights.

ORDER IS A LIE, CHAOS REIGNS SUPREME!

Video Content
I’m going to do one stage per update. There’s 20 stages total, plus four boss stages, and the intro and two finale segments, and then five stages for the Epilogue DLC and one Bonus Video for a total of 33 updates. Each stage takes about ten minutes to clear including “plot” segments… if you can really call them that. The final five minutes of each video will be just heavily edited running around and vacuuming up all collectables you can get to at that time.

Epilogue throws this all out the window because there is no backtracking and no Light Seed gathering and the stages are slightly inconsistent with regard to their length so all bets are off on that one, baby!

COMMENTARY TEAM

Some Jackass | Blind Sally | Artix | CJacobs | Fedule

Why the gently caress is everything out of order?
PoP 2008 is a very backtrack-heavy, non-linear game. So rather than jump all over the map with no rhyme or reason to unlock certain things, I’m structuring my updates so that it looks like I’m clearing out each of the four areas of the game in an unbroken sequential order and leaving most of the backtracking on the cutting room floor.

You’ll be able to ferret out my actual path through the game by keeping an eye on the Light Seed counter and what powers/areas I’ve unlocked on the map screen, as certain things I do early in the game won’t be seen until later in the LP.

Why does Artix take over the LP halfway through it?
Because I lost interest in doing it, truth be told. That said, the game falls back under my control for the Epilogue DLC.

Spoiler Policy
Don’t want none of that business, no siree. There’s not that much to spoil in the game anyway, as things are fairly straightforward and predictable for the most part, expect for a few key elements, most of which come up in random order anyway thanks to the game’s non-linear nature.

That said, however, I have one iron-clad stipulation:



When we get there, by all means, have at it. But until that point, just don’t. I want to make sure those who haven’t played the game get to feel the full frontal impact of it when it hits.

Because I’m a sadist.

















nine-gear crow fucked around with this message at Mar 22, 2017 around 07:42

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nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

red bird


And now here’s a very brief history of the Prince of Persia franchise that treats you like you know absolutely nothing about it beyond the fact that it involves a prince and is probably set in Persia, but who really knows about that last part.

If nothing else, this will help you contextualize where the gently caress 2008 fits into with the rest of the PoP franchise and why it’s such an odd duck title.



So as you can see by the above image, the Prince of Persia series has had quite a few games in it over the years since it’s 1989 debut on the Apple II PC. And even then, that's not really everything PoP-related you could possibly include in there like the deluge of Prince of Persia 1 ports, Prince of Persia: Harem Adventures, Prince of Persia: Revelations (the PSP port of Warrior Within with additional exclusive content), the HD re-release bundle of The Sands of Time, Warrior Within, and The Two Thrones for the PS3, and the Nintendo Wii version of The Forgotten Sands, which is literally a completely different game from the PS3, 360, PC, DS, and PSP versions of Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands. Because the Wii was really loving weird

The franchise has bounced through several developers in its time, but the big three in its history are Brøderbund, who developed the original ’89 PoP, former Brøderbund sub-studio Red Orb Entertainment (they of Myst and assorted sequels fame), and Ubisoft, who’ve helmed every PoP game since 2003’s The Sands of Time.

The series is divided into three separate continuities, the “Original Trilogy,” which consisted of the first three published PC games; the Sands of Time series, which was initially a trilogy, but had a few more games shoehorned in after the fact; and the so-called 2008 series—though can you really call two games, one of which isn’t even considered canon inside its own continuity, a series?

After the incredibly buggy and unpopular Prince of Persia 3D bombed on the PC market, the OG Prince of Persia series was axed and the series’ publisher, The Learning Company, sold the rights to Ubisoft, who then made The Sands of Time and started off what gamers know now as the “modern” PoP franchise.

Then PoP 2008 happened.

Then Ubisoft tried its damndest to forget it happened.

Then the Walt Disney Company made The Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time motion picture, and there hasn’t been so much as a peep out of Ubisoft about a new PoP game in five years now.

In 2012, development materials for a game codenamed “Osiris” leaked online, and briefly led to speculation that Osiris was a new Prince of Persia game, or at the very least a PoP-inspired game like Assassin’s Creed, only this time set in ancient Egypt.

But then it was cancelled. Because Ubisoft is a clearinghouse of terrible game design and business practice ideas.



And then there’s this…

Also released in 2008 shortly after PoP 2008 itself, Prince of Persia: The Fallen King was Ubisoft’s idea of the kind of sequel PoP 2008 truly deserved: a Nintendo DS platformer that’s not even considered “canon” in 2008’s storyline.

Set after the events of the Epilogue DLC, The Fallen King continues (for lack of a better term) the storyline started by PoP 2008, as the Prince swaps out Elika as a companion for Zal, the titular “Fallen King” to do… mostly the same poo poo he did in PoP 2008, only in two dimensions now rather than three.

All told, it’s a not even a blip on the radar in the Prince of Persia franchise, and it committed the same grievous sin in Ubisoft’s eyes that 2008, Forgotten Sands, and the movie did… it was just “okay.”

It has no bearing on the plot or gameplay of 2008, I’m just mentioning it for posterity’s sake because it’s just there.

Thus concludes our brief history of Prince of Persia.

If you would like to check out other Prince of Persia LPs (please don't, only love MY Prince of Persia LP, no one else's ), then you're in luck, as pretty much the entire rest of the PoP franchise (minus Forgotten Sands) is on the LP Archive:

nine-gear crow fucked around with this message at Aug 12, 2015 around 11:45

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

red bird



"THE PRINCE"

Here is our protagonist, “The Prince”. After playing through this game about 2 and a half times now, I’m fairly certain that this individual is not, in fact, a prince. He actually doesn’t have a name, and is very evasive about who he really is under that goofy scarf. Though I can see why he’s called “The Prince,” because I’m guessing Ubisoft thought that calling the game



just wouldn’t push the plastic as well as the original title did.

The not-really-a-Prince is a tomb raiding thief who allegedly was shepparding his pack donkey named Farah home when he lost her in a sandstorm and found his way into this whole plot with Elika and Ahriman, and all the various baddies who now want to murder him and destroy the world, though not necessarily in that order.

He straddles the line between loveable self-aware lug, and dumbass goony gently caress. I’ll leave it up to you to decide which one’s the more fitting description.

Voiced by: NOLAN NORTH


ELIKA

Elika is our female lead for the game. She is Princess of the Ahura (pronounced Ooo-rah, like the Marine chant), and daughter of the Mourning King. She possesses strange and growing magical powers, which she believes have been granted to her by Ormazd, the God of Light. And she has sought to use these powers to defend the land from Ormazd’s evil counterpart, Ahriman, the God of Darkness.

Then the Prince shows up and fucks that all up, so now they’re stuck with one another trying to fix whatever the hell the Mourning King did that let Ahriman out of his prison in the Temple of Light. Elika has lead a very sheltered life in a dwindling kingdom, but isn’t afraid to venture out into the world and take charge of matters personally… now more than ever since she’s the only one left who isn’t a jagoff voiced by Nolan North.

This also marks the second straight game I’ve LP’d where Kari Wahlgren voices a princess character with ZERO actual romantic interest in her male lead counterpart. It’s like poetry, it rhymes.

The other big key fact about Elika is that [SPOILERS!] she's actually dead. Yes, before the events of the game, Elika suffered an unfortunate fall and died, but was revived by Ormazd for the sole purpose of using her life energy to recharge the seal keeping Ahriman trapped in the Temple of Light. When the Mourning King found out about it, he decided to quickly put a stop to that by going to the temple and destroying the seal himself so that Elika wouldn't have anything to sacrifice herself for and thus would get to continue living... in Ahriman's corrupted hell world, but details, details.

Voiced by: Kari Wahlgren


FARAH
/
The Prince's erstwhile pack donkey (pictured left). Alleged to be laden with a large quantity of gold which the Prince had come into by... specific means. She was lost in the great sandstorm that swept over the desert shortly before the Prince happened upon Elika and her father and found himself embroiled in this whole insane plot of trying to save the world or whatever.

We never actually see the donkey in-game, so who knows if the Prince is even telling the truth about her or her alleged payload. As we point out in the video, she is named after Princess Farah (pictured right), the warrior princess who fills a similar role of Elika in the plots of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and The Two Thrones, and is the only passing reference to the Sands of Time trilogy in the 2008 game.

UPDATE: According to Gimbal lock, one of PoP 2008's developers, the donkey was in fact going to appear in-game at one point or another. There was also a scrapped plan for a New Game+ mode that would have seen Farah (the donkey, not the princess) replacing Elika in-game while still possessing all of Elika's magical abilities and using Elika's animation rigging. (Ubisoft had a mesh and model cooked up for the donkey, but apparently couldn't get it to work properly... as a donkey, at least.) The conceit being that The Prince is actually hallucinating after that rock falls on his head in the intro.

Also this:

Gimbal lock posted:


[ARTIST'S IMPRESSION]

While The Prince would act out the events of the game as normal, Farah would remain silent, so The Prince would be talking to himself, basically. I think we can all agree, the world is a dimmer place at the loss of Prince of Persia 2008's Magical Donkey Princess New Game+.

That said, as shown off in the Bonus Video, you can unlock a special skin for Elika that resembled Sands of Time Farah that you can toggle on and off at any time from the start menu. So you can play the game as one gigantic sight gag with the Prince looking for and constantly talking about Farah... to Farah.


THE MOURNING KING

You’re gonna notice a trend in this game, in that only Elika and the two warring deities get proper names. Everyone else merely gets a title. And even then, nowhere in the game itself is this guy ever referred to as “The Mourning King,” only in supplemental materials.

The Mourning King is—or rather, was—the king of the Ahura, the order tasked by Ormazd with keeping Ahriman imprisoned in the Temple of Light, lest all the bad poo poo seen in the intro happen. Suffice to say, after letting him out himself, the Mourning King is REALLY bad at this job. …But he has a reason for that, which we will get to in due time.

He’s referred to as the Mourning King because he never got over the death of wife some years prior to the start of the game. He succumbed to grief and regret and never took off his funeral garb, hence why he’s wearing a black robe when we meet him. As he gave himself more and more over to his sorrow, his rule over the already faltering Ahura collapsed completely, until things finally reached a breaking point—he turned to Ahriman, the devil he swore to defend the world against, to help end his suffering.

And then we went and beat the poo poo out of him...

Blind Sally joked that he has two alternate forms: the Afternoon King and the Evening King—please hit him.

Voiced by: Fred Tatasciore


AHRIMAN

The big bad God of Darkness himself. Ahriman is our Big Bad for this game. His presence in the world is what has turned everything to poo poo, and now we’ve got to go fix it before he finds a way to break out of his prison completely.

Ahriman is the brother of Ormazd, the God of Light, and has sworn to destroy everything Ormazd holds dear and wishes to protect: namely the Earth and all the people living on it.

Ahriman is a huge dick.

While our direct encounters with Ahriman will be few and fleeting in the game, he makes his presence known repeatedly through visions which The Prince and Elika seem to share, and through his minions: his 1000 soldiers of darkness, and his four generals, known collectively as The Corrupted.

Voiced by: Kwasi Songui & Catherine Kidd


ORMAZD


Sir Not Appearing In This Game.

The God of Light, brother of Ahriman, and our erstwhile Big Good of the game. With Ahriman imprisoned in the Temple of Light, Ormazd just kind of buggered off some thousand years ago and left the world to its own devices, leaving the Ahura behind to act in his stead. And that just worked out spectacularly now, didn’t it?

Elika believes that her visions and growing powers are a sign that Ormadz may be returning to protect the world he once abandoned now that Ahriman threatens it again, or at the very least is making it possible for it to be defended once more. The Prince, however, doesn’t share Elika’s faith in the God of Deadbeat Parenting.

Ahriman might be a dick, but Ormazd is kind of a tool.

FLASH FACT: Both Ormazd and Ahriman are actual deities in the Zoroastrian faith, where they're better known as Ahura Mazda and Angra Mainyu, respectively.


THE CORRUPUTED


Ahriman’s chosen generals. Collectively, they are known as “The Corrupted,” individually, they are The Hunter, The Alchemist, The Concubine, and The Warrior. Each one was once a mortal human, but sold their bodies and souls to Ahriman in exchange for power. Though they maintain touches of their humanity and individuality, they now serve Ahriman’s will with undying loyalty, and command his 1,000 soldiers of darkness.

Each of The Corrupted has claimed control over a specific area of the Ahura Kingdom now that they’ve been released from their prison in the Temple of Light along with Ahriman. The Hunter rules The Ruined Citadel, The Alchemist rules The Vale, The Concubine rules The Royal Palace, while The Warrior rules The City of Light.

The Epilogue DLC introduces us to a fifth Corrupted, but that's all spoilers for now.

tl;dr: These are our boss characters for the game.


THE HUNTER


The first of Ahriman’s four Corrupted, and the one we’ll be dealing with for the foreseeable future.

According to Elika, The Hunter was once an Ahura Prince that lived for the thrill of the hunt. But as he became more and more skilled at hunting, the thrill diminished, and he grew bored with the one thing in life he truly loved. He was also a vain and cruel man, so he went to Ahriman and offered an exchange; he would pledge his soul and service to Ahriman, if he gave him the power to hunt the deadliest animal of all: MAN.

He then became the being known as The Hunter, a monster who hunted, killed, and tortured hundreds, maybe thousands, in Ahriman’s name. He was eventually defeated by the Ahura and imprisoned alongside Ahriman, and his name was stricken from the histories of the Ahura.

Voiced by: Sebastien Croteau


THE ALCHEMIST


The Alchemist was once a venerated scholar, one of the Ahura's brightest minds. Much of the machinery seen in the Vale itself was of his design. However, while he was a wise and inventive man, he was also a fearful one, and he feared his own death above all else. The thought of his work outliving him sickened him, and he began to search for a means of attaining immortality, but as his search progressed, his morality slipped further and further away. As he neared the end of his life and grew old and frail, he struck a deal with Ahriman out of desperation and madness: eternal life for loyal service to the dark god.

The man who made the Ahura's machines was reborn as the monster known as The Alchemist, a being with telekinetic powers and the ability to bend raw Corruption to his whims. Under Ahriman's influence, he enslaved scholars, scientists, and builders of the Vale and twisted his own machines into devices of evil, used to torture others or feed Ahriman's war machine. Though he still feared his own demise above all else, he cared little for the lives of those around him, sacrificing hundreds or thousands in the name of both mastering the Corruption and understanding the secrets of death itself.

When the Ahura defeated Ahriman, The Alchemist was imprisoned in the Temple of Light alongside the other Corrupted, though his machinery in the Vale remained intact, becoming a "necessary evil" of Ahura civilization; repurposed for peaceful uses, but never to be free of the Alchemist's taint. First one to make a "huur, taint!" joke gets insta-DQ'd from the Death Counter contest.

Voiced by: Paul Mercier


THE CONCUBINE


The third of Ahriman’s Corrupted generals and ruler of the Royal Palace.

In her mortal life, The Concubine was, well… a concubine. Big surprise, I know. As a courtesan, she played consort to a number of interchangeable Ahura nobles and royals, becoming quite familiar with palace grounds she would eventually usurp as one of the Corrupted and the quirks and secrets of the men she bedded.

Driven by her downtrodden and abused place in Ahura society, she plotted to overthrow the men who held power over the land to improve the lives of the peasantry like herself. Unfortunately, she turned to Ahriman to attain the power she lacked to affect the change she wished for, and as she fell further into corruption, her means and motives became corrupted as well. At the height of her power, she had usurped the Ahura royal family and claimed complete control over the royal palace itself, terrorizing its denizens with illusions and magic.

Now that she’s been released from the Temple along with Ahriman by the Mourning King, the Concubine has returned to her old haunt in the palace and by god, she will never shut the gently caress up about it.

Voiced by: Lucinda Davis


THE WARRIOR


The Warrior is the fourth and final (base game) Corrupted. His domain is the City of Light, the one-time home to the Ahura common people.

In his mortal life, the Warrior was the king of a proud, but peaceful people from before the days of Ahura. However, his nation was beset from all sides by enemies and his people suffered greatly during their assaults. He lacked the strength to defend his people and ultimately fell into despair as their suffering increased.

It was then that Ahriman came to him, promising to grant him the strength to defend his people and defeat his enemies, which the king, in his desperation, accepted. Ahriman transformed him into the being now known as the Warrior, a powerful and deadly unstoppable force of destruction. The Warrior promptly slaughtered all those who opposed him, but at the cost of the very people he had struck the bargain to defend. Those who survived the war ultimately fled the city rather than live under the rule of a monster.

With his people gone and his city in ruins, the Warrior had nothing left to live for and by then was so deep in Ahriman’s thrall that he ruefully turned himself over to the dark god to serve as one of his Corrupted generals alongside the Hunter, Alchemist, and Concubine.

However, unlike the other Corrupted, there may yet be a shred of his former self still there inside the Warrior’s otherwise impenetrable hulk.

Voiced by: J. Grant Albrecht


And lastly, our special Epilogue Corrupted:


THE MOURNING KING

The newest member of the Corrupted, and the only one of the original five to survive the events of Prince of Persia 2008 itself. The Mourning King fell under Ahriman’s sway when he destroyed the Tree of Life in the Temple of Light to uphold his end of a bargain struck with Ahriman: if the King released Ahriman from his prison, Ahriman would revive his recently deceased daughter Elika. While Elika and the Prince faced off against the other four Corrupted, the King fell deeper under Ahriman’s thrall and the dark god transformed him into a fifth Corrupted piece by piece.

The Mourning King now acts as Ahriman’s herald, speaking with his voice and acting as his hand as harbinger of doom for the living world. The original Mourning King, the good but desperate man who was once Elika’s father has been completely destroyed by the corruption. All that remains is Ahriman’s soulless puppet, bent to the dark god’s will and growing ever stronger as Ahriman’s power returns now that he’s free of the Temple’s prison completely.

The man who struck a deal with the devil so that his daughter could live again now stalks her steps across the desert seeking to kill her in Ahriman’s name. In a perverted way, Ahriman did indeed hold up his end of the bargain, as he always does: the King freed Ahriman on the promise that he would take his grief and pain away, and indeed he did; thanks to the corruption he no longer feels anything.

Voiced by: Fred Tatasciore




THE SHAPESHIFTER

A singular encapsulation of late 00s-era Ubisoft’s developmental laziness. In lieu of facing the Mourning King at the end of each subsection of the Underground Palace, you will also fight a boss known as the Shapeshifter, and by that I mean you will fight an enemy that swaps back and forth between the Hunter and Warrior’s forms to a frustrating degree.

The in-story handwave is that Ahriman apparently can’t confront the Prince and Elika directly because he’s hasn’t regained enough of his power to overcome Elika’s magic, so he sends out this thing that is an extension of himself yet not actually himself to face them which just cycles through forms that he’s already familiar with: his Corrupted generals.

It’s just an excuse for Ubisoft to reuse assets from the base game because Epilogue was rushed out the door just under four months after 2008’s original release date. And even as a half-assed stopgap boss, it’s doubly half assed because it doesn’t even bother to retread all four of the base game Corrupted. That’s right, for reasons that escape me (probably because they didn’t want to bother adapting their code to Epilogue’s new environment parameters), the Shapeshifter never turns into the Alchemist or the Concubine, who were the two most complex Corrupted in terms of gameplay mechanics and animation.




Ubigoon Gimbal lock shows us some sweet insider PoP '08 swag: a Rabbid Nolan North Prince.







Predict the total number of times I die in the LP and win a new avatar care of Blind Sally's credit card.

Here are the current standings and "tie" stipulations:



  • Ignatius M. Meen - 1001
  • Great Joe - 750
  • Ryushikaze - 700
  • Calax - 666
  • Nidoking - 500
  • Trizophenie - 450
  • mrRedWhite - 420
  • LoonShia - 400
  • Nomadic Scholar - 394
  • AutistTree - 369
  • Chaeden - 363
  • FoolyCharged - 350
  • Tunicate - 343
  • Aumanor - 333
  • Strong Mouse - 309
  • Accursed Walrus - 300
  • Ozdhaka - 275
  • Captain Bravo - 250
  • Nyeehg - 240
  • Rigged Death Trap - 231
  • OldTimeyProspector - 222
  • Gimbal lock - 215
  • megamariox - 202
  • chiasaur11 - 200
  • Nihilarian - 197
  • Kangra - 187
  • Schwartzcough - 182
  • Darth TNT - 180
  • anilEhilated - 175
  • OmanyteJackson - 169
  • CJacobs - 165*
  • Bootcha - 164
  • Kasrkin - 162
  • Onmi - 157
  • Delta Green - 152
  • Omobono - 150
  • liquidypoo - 147
  • Senerio - 144
  • Shei-kun - 130
  • Ghostwoods - 123
  • FeyerbrandX - 121
  • Blue Link - 120
  • ZeeToo - 112
  • Agean90 - 108
  • Shinjobi - 103
  • AradoBalanga - 102
  • Major_JF - 101
  • Eponymous - 100
  • Mraagvpeine - 99 ALSO WINNER BY TECHNICALITY!!!
  • cant cook creole bream - 97 WINNER BY TECHNICALITY!!!
  • Oblivion4568238 - 94
  • Miz Kriss - 90
  • Iron Chitlin - 88
  • Waffleman_ - 81
  • Bruceski - 76
  • Fister Roboto - 69
  • GuyUpNorth - 42
  • Herr Tog - 25
  • Camel Pimp - 20
  • Mehuyael - 0

In the event two bets are equally close, we're gonna play by Price Is Right rules and award it to the lower of the two. Speaking of which, no bet number will be accepted more than once. Got a number you feel is lucky? Better claim it.

You only get ONE GUESS, so make it count. Disqualified players will be crossed out whenever we cross their estimate threshold in-video.

May the odds be ever in your favour.

*CJacobs' bet does not actually count on account of him being a commentator on this LP.

nine-gear crow fucked around with this message at Apr 26, 2017 around 05:03

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

red bird


VIDEO: The Canyon ~ Into The Storm
VIDEO: Into The Storm Cutscenes
VIDEO: E3 2008 Trailer feat. Sigur Rós (h/t: Gamehelper)

We begin our quest through the fallen realm of the Ahura and meet several lovely people, including a Princess, a King, and one REALLY pissed off evil God. All in a day’s work for Nolan North.


New characters will be introduced on a per-episode basis so as not to spoil anything that might or might not be coming up. For now though, let’s look at our principle characters, shall we:

"THE PRINCE"

Here is our protagonist, “The Prince”. After playing through this game about 2 and a half times now, I’m fairly certain that this individual is not, in fact, a prince. He actually doesn’t have a name, and is very evasive about who he really is under that goofy scarf. Though I can see why he’s called “The Prince,” because I’m guessing Ubisoft thought that calling the game



just wouldn’t push the plastic as well as the original title did.

The not-really-a-Prince is a tomb raiding thief who allegedly was shepparding his pack donkey named Farah home when he lost her in a sandstorm and found his way into this whole plot with Elika and Ahriman, and all the various baddies who now want to murder him and destroy the world, though not necessarily in that order.

He straddles the line between loveable self-aware lug, and dumbass goony gently caress. I’ll leave it up to you to decide which one’s the more fitting description.

Voiced by: NOLAN NORTH


ELIKA

Elika is our female lead for the game. She is Princess of the Ahura (pronounced Ooo-rah, like the Marine chant), and daughter of the Mourning King. She possesses strange and growing magical powers, which she believes have been granted to her by Ormazd, the God of Light. And she has sought to use these powers to defend the land from Ormazd’s evil counterpart, Ahriman, the God of Darkness.

Then the Prince shows up and fucks that all up, so now they’re stuck with one another trying to fix whatever the hell the Mourning King did that let Ahriman out of his prison in the Temple of Light. Elika has lead a very sheltered life in a dwindling kingdom, but isn’t afraid to venture out into the world and take charge of matters personally… now more than ever since she’s the only one left who isn’t a jagoff voiced by Nolan North.

This also marks the second straight game I’ve LP’d where Kari Wahlgren voices a princess character with ZERO actual romantic interest in her male lead counterpart. It’s like poetry, it rhymes.

Voiced by: Kari Wahlgren


FARAH
/
The Prince's erstwhile pack donkey (pictured left). Alleged to be laden with a large quantity of gold which the Prince had come into by... specific means. She was lost in the great sandstorm that swept over the desert shortly before the Prince happened upon Elika and her father and found himself embroiled in this whole insane plot of trying to save the world or whatever.

We never actually see the donkey in-game, so who knows if the Prince is even telling the truth about her or her alleged payload. As we point out in the video, she is named after Princess Farah (pictured right), the warrior princess who fills a similar role of Elika in the plots of Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and The Two Thrones, and is the only passing reference to the Sands of Time trilogy in the 2008 game.

UPDATE: According to Gimbal lock, one of PoP 2008's developers, the donkey was in fact going to appear in-game at one point or another. There was also a scrapped plan for a New Game+ mode that would have seen Farah (the donkey, not the princess) replacing Elika in-game while still possessing all of Elika's magical abilities and using Elika's animation rigging. (Ubisoft had a mesh and model cooked up for the donkey, but apparently couldn't get it to work properly... as a donkey, at least.) The conceit being that The Prince is actually hallucinating after that rock falls on his head in the intro.

Also this:

Gimbal lock posted:


[ARTIST'S IMPRESSION]

While The Prince would act out the events of the game as normal, Farah would remain silent, so The Prince would be talking to himself, basically. I think we can all agree, the world is a dimmer place at the loss of Prince of Persia 2008's Magical Donkey Princess New Game+.


THE MOURNING KING

You’re gonna notice a trend in this game, in that only Elika and the two warring deities get proper names. Everyone else merely gets a title. And even then, nowhere in the game itself is this guy ever referred to as “The Mourning King,” only in supplemental materials.

The Mourning King is—or rather, was—the king of the Ahura, the order tasked by Ormazd with keeping Ahriman imprisoned in the Temple of Light, lest all the bad poo poo seen in the intro happen. Suffice to say, after letting him out himself, the Mourning King is REALLY bad at this job. …But he has a reason for that, which we will get to in due time.

He’s referred to as the Mourning King because he never got over the death of wife some years prior to the start of the game. He succumbed to grief and regret and never took off his funeral garb, hence why he’s wearing a black robe when we meet him. As he gave himself more and more over to his sorrow, his rule over the already faltering Ahura collapsed completely, until things finally reached a breaking point—he turned to Ahriman, the devil he swore to defend the world against, to help end his suffering.

And then we went and beat the poo poo out of him...

Blind Sally joked that he has two alternate forms: the Afternoon King and the Evening King—please hit him.

Voiced by: Fred Tatasciore


AHRIMAN

The big bad God of Darkness himself. Ahriman is our Big Bad for this game. His presence in the world is what has turned everything to poo poo, and now we’ve got to go fix it before he finds a way to break out of his prison completely.

Ahriman is the brother of Ormazd, the God of Light, and has sworn to destroy everything Ormazd holds dear and wishes to protect: namely the Earth and all the people living on it.

Ahriman is a huge dick.

While our direct encounters with Ahriman will be few and fleeting in the game, he makes his presence known repeatedly through visions which The Prince and Elika seem to share, and through his minions: his 1000 soldiers of darkness, and his four generals, known collectively as The Corrupted.

Voiced by: Kwasi Songui & Catherine Kidd




PoP' 2008's gameplay is fairly straight forward, particularly if you've played even the barest hint of an Assassin's Creed game. It was built on the same engine the original AC was (both games were developed by Ubisoft's Montreal studio), only with a lot of the more complex elements that made Assassin's Creed the hit that it was stripped out in favor of a focus more on platforming and free running.

The aim of the game is to maintain momentum and hit trigger points at just the right time to semi-automatically move on to the next part of the platforming section. But be warned, though, if you mistime your jump or line things up improperly, or the game just decides "gently caress you" and its collision detection parameters doink out on you (which happens a lot, because this game is kind of sketchily coded), and your rear end is going into oblivion, my friend.



BUT WAIT! There's a gimmick for that! Basically speaking, YOU CAN'T DIE IN THIS GAME!



While Sands of Time let you rewind time if you hosed up and threw yourself off a ledge the wrong way, 2008 does something similar, only it does it automatically. If you miss a jump or get swallowed by a piece of Corruption, or get badly wounded in combat, Elika will step in and pull your rear end out of the fire with her magic. In the platforming sections, she'll warp you back to the last patch of solid ground you were standing on before you "died", and in combat she'll restore you to full health, but the enemy you're facing will also regain either most or all of its health as well.

This was quite the bone of contention for many players and reviewers and is the weakspot they point to most often when looking for reasons to write 2008 off as a "bad" game. Sally, Artix, and myself are all in agreement, however, that this is actually a rather useful mechanic in the grand scheme of the game, given that it's also a freerunning game at heart.

There's an Achievement / Trophy called "Be gentle with her," which only unlocks if you manage to beat the game once without dying over 100 times. I have never gotten it, neither has Artix (to my knowledge), but Sally has. We'll be keeping a running tally of my deaths over the course of the LP so we can see just how close to (or how far away from) earning it this time around I get.

Still, you gotta love Ubisoft. "An important part of our game is buggy as hell." / "Make a really hard Achievement out of it then!" / "But sir, that's sadistic." / "I know! "

CONTROLS

The actual controls for the game are as follows:
(NOTE: I'm playing the Xbox 360 version for this LP -- PS3 and PC control schemes can be found online, but are more or less analogous across all three platforms)

- Run / Turn / Move
- Camera Control
(Select) - Map Screen
(Start) - Pause Menu
- Jump / Dodge
- Use Object / Gauntlet Lift Attack
- Sword Attack
- Elika Magic Attack
- Slide Down Wall / Drop From Ledge / Block / Parry
- NOLAN NORTH BUTTON (Talk)

WALL RUNNING



Like The Prince is demonstrating here, any section of a wall that has this lighter coloured scoring on can be used to wall run on. To wall run, simply run up to the ledge closest to the marked section of the wall and press , and in theory you should automatically latch onto the wall and keep going. Unless the game fucks you over and randomly decides that you didn't connect to the wall or were pointing in a direction other than the one specific degree point it wanted you to be pointed it. In that case. EAT A DEATH, CHUMP!

When you reach the end of the wallrun segment you need to press again to jump to the next part of the path, otherwise The Prince will just drop off the wall like a dumbass and Elika will need to rescue him. Pressing it too soon, however, will also fling you out into the abyss and Elika need to rescue you again.

WALL JUMPING



Pressing at a wall or ledge will cause you to leap up it about 1.5x The Prince's own height and then start to slide down it with his gauntlet claw. Pressing again will cause you to leap outward from the wall in a straight line. This is great if you're in a narrow stretch like this part of the tutorial here, because you can chain wall jumps together to ascend vertically like so. This ISN'T so good when there's nothing there to grab onto or you accidentally push twice when ascending a ledge and you huck yourself into the abyss again and eat another bonehead death.

You can also combine this with another skill, the Elika Throw, using the button to double the distance The Prince can wall jump to clear rather wide vertical lifts.

Speaking of that...

ELIKA THROW / DOUBLE JUMP







If you make a jump that seems too far for The Prince to clear on his own, the screen will turn black and white, the action will slow down, and The Prince will usually make a quick comment, which is your prompt to hit . This will cue Elika to use her magic to toss you the rest of the distance to safety.

Using Elika to double jump doesn't count towards the "Be gentle with her" Achievement. Ubisoft are a bunch of scurrilous dicks, but they're not that scurrilous.

WALL SLIDING



You can slide down walls by using either the button or the trigger. Holding on to either will allow The Prince to use his gauntlet to safely slide down a wall or ledge. If you let it go too early however, The Prince will fall to his death and Elika will have to save him again. And BOY HOWDY is the game ever arbitrary about what it considers a "lethal" height to be.

WALL CLIMBING



Nooks and crannies in walls like the ones seen here are how you'll be spending about 45% of your time getting from place to place in PoP 2008. They're very simple, however. All you need to do is jump towards them with and you'll automatically latch on to them. From there it's just a matter of maneuvering along the path they lay out for you in the wall with the stick. When you reach the end of that particular crack, press to jump or move on to the next part of the platform.

"CO-OP ACTIONS"





So every now and then there's these little puzzles that are purely there to beat you over the head with the notion that "The Prince and Elika are meant to be a team! " (even though she despises him).

For now, the majority of these co-op actions involve you walking up to a leaver, pressing to get The Prince (and Elika, if she's feeling up to it right that second) to grab on to either end of it and then using the stick to turn that leaver in the correct direction.

These puzzles get a little more complex the further you go into the game, but we'll cover those when we get to them.

COMBAT



Combat takes up barely a quarter of the game. The intro's just top-heavy with combat encounters to get you familiar with it by the time you go on to face The Corrupted, who are coming down the pike fairly soon.

When you enter combat mode, you're automatically locked on to the enemy you're facing at that time and can maneuver around them using the stick, and to dodge or roll away from enemy attacks. Pressing the button begins an attack sequence with The Prince's sword. It's a basic initial attack, but combat in the game is based on creating lengthy combos which employ as many of your attack types as you can string together before the combo ends.

Hammering won't do that much damage in the long run and leaves The Prince open to being parried or counterattacked very easily, so the longer and more diverse the combo you can pull off, the greater damage each subsequent hit will score and the harder it will be to be interrupted.



Using the button will draw Elika into the fight. By default she hovers behind The Prince and will not attack unprompted by the player, but when she does attack she does powerful magical damage against enemies which can be chained into combos for even greater effect.

Elika does have one weakness in combat, however, but we haven't reached the point where that's in play yet, but I'll cover it when we do.

As I point out in the video, there's a neat bit of Story/Gameplay convergence going on in the tutorial: though Elika joins The Prince in combat, she will not attack the Ahura soldiers or her father when you fight them. Only when Ahriman's goons start showing up will she actually do anything when you press , otherwise she just sort of halfway leaps forward and then jumps back behind The Prince. Pretty frustrating form a gameplay perspective, but rather cool from a storyline one.



Pressing initiates an Aerial Attack. The Prince hoists an enemy into the air with his gauntlet, allowing either him or Elika to start basically juggling the poor bastard in midair with either or .

Pressing again will end the combo by having The Prince slam the enemy down to the ground with the gauntlet.



The game will very unsubtly prompt you to block incoming attacks with either or . Missing a prompt will cause you to take damage, denoted by the screen corners turning red. The more hits you take, the redder the screen gets until you "die" and Elika heals you back to full health (which also heals the enemy you're facing off against). OR you can dodge or tank with the guard option until you auto-heal. Really, in most fights, you can't go wrong just laying on for most of the fight.

When enemies take wild swings at you, if you're quick enough on the draw with and catch them mid-swing, you can parry the attack and leave the enemy open out a quick counterattack combo. The drawback to parrying is that your timing needs to be perfect, otherwise the enemy will get a free hit on because you miscalculated and dropped your guard.



And finally for the combat section of the intro, there's the Wall Kill maneuver. If you can get a non-boss enemy up against a wall through any means necessary, The Prince will preform an insta-kill attack on it. With boss characters, it will merely do a moderate amount of damage against them.

COMBOS
Here's a list of potential combos you can use in combat and what they can chain to. If you manage to score a 14-hit combo on an enemy (the longest possible potential combo chain in the game), you unlock the "Sword Master" Achievement / Trophy.

Normal Combo
-> End of Combo
-> Elika Combo
-> Elika Combo
-> Lift Combo
-> Lift Combo
-> Acrobatic Combo
-> Acrobatic Combo

Elika Combo
Normal Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Lift Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Lift Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Lift Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Lift Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal Combo -> -> Aerial Combo

Lift Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Aerial Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Aerial Combo

Acrobatic Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> End of Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Throw Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Throw Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Throw Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Throw Combo
Normal / Elika Combo -> -> Throw Combo

Throw Combo
Acrobatic Combo -> -> End of Combo
Acrobatic Combo -> -> End of Combo
Acrobatic Combo -> -> End of Combo
Acrobatic Combo -> -> End of Combo
Acrobatic Combo -> -> End of Combo

Aerial Combo
Lift Combo -> -> End of Combo
Lift Combo -> -> End of Combo
Lift Combo -> -> End of Combo
Lift Combo -> -> End of Combo
Lift Combo -> -> End of Combo

THE 14-HIT COMBO


Holy poo poo...




Well, that's a lot to take in for an opening update, so let's end things on a more visual note.

CJacobs complimented The Prince's kick rear end Godhand gauntlet in this video, and I mentioned that the Limited Edition release of Prince of Persia 2008 featured the gauntlet front-and-centre as its cover art, so here's both a promotional drawing featuring the gauntlet, and the aforementioned cover art variant of it:





Pretty sweet, huh?

And while we're at it, here's a bunch more promotional artwork shamelessly stolen from Creative Uncut:



Every aspect of this game's visual design is just so beautiful . There's more artwork on CU, but it's all sort-of spoilers for now, but that will come in time.

Also, one last thing, here's a link to the Sigur Rós E3 2008 trailer for the game mentioned by Blind Sally. Sigur Rós is an awesome Icelandic rock band who've been getting a lot more attention here in North America in recent years. Their music has been featured in all sorts of movies and TV shows lately, and they even contributed the version of "The Rains of Castemere" heard on Game of Thrones immediately after the Purple Wedding (they also guest spotted in that episode as a band of mistrals). Their frontman Jónsi is also well known for his solo work, including singing the ending themes to both How to Train Your Dragon films from Dreamworks.

The song in the trailer is called "Saeglópur" ("Lost at Sea") from their 2005 album "Takk...".

nine-gear crow fucked around with this message at Jan 22, 2015 around 05:48

anilEhilated
Feb 17, 2014

But I say fuck the rain.


Grimey Drawer

Style change, Nolan North, weirdass boring platforming, stupid plot, everything I'd forgive - but the combat system is just so loving terrible, and that's after the freeform fighting of the Sands of Time trilogy. This game (and the subsequent murder of the series) is why I refuse to buy anything Ubisoft-made.
That being said, I'm going to watch this with interest.

anilEhilated fucked around with this message at Jan 6, 2015 around 13:11

Waffleman_
Jan 20, 2011

I am now all animes


I adore the art and the characters of this game, but the way the game is structured combined with the way the platforming works makes it really easy for it to become boring and repetitive. Though it has been several years since I last played it and I seem to have lost my copy, so let's check this out.

MachuPikacchu
Oct 15, 2012

Sacre vert! Maman!


Besides the original Prince of Persia, I only ever played Sands of Time and Warrior Within. I really like the idea of reboots like this one which remix elements of previous versions, even if the execution isn't always perfect, so I'll be watching this with interest.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.



Grimey Drawer



Typo in the first boss fight, nice going.

The game actually doesn't look so bad right now. Was weird at first how you lower the enemy's HP even when they seem to be blocking, but I could easily see it as you wearing them down before you can strike past their defenses. Otherwise the video was too short to really get an impression of the gameplay, good or bad.

I'll be following the LP to see how bad/not bad it gets.

Artix
Apr 26, 2010

Old Vulgrim's got something neeeew for you~


Should have called it the Nolan North Bactracking Simulator 2008™.

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

red bird

Artix posted:

Should have called it the Nolan North Bactracking Simulator 2008™.

I probably should have just stuck with

RSCNyx
Mar 6, 2013

It's okay, little guy. I would be scared too.


I really wanted to like this game, because I loved Sands of Time and thought the two games after it were alright. This one just turned out to be a huge disappointment for me, for a variety of reasons.

The combat and backtracking killed it for me, I couldn't play it all the way through...so I'll want to see how it ends. At the least, it looks gorgeous!

Blind Sally
Jan 9, 2007

Jim's now a
Blind Cave Salamander!


nine-gear crow posted:

The song in the trailer is called "Saeglópur" ("Lost at Sea") from their 2005 album "Takk...".

Full song here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84i7zQ_ACnU

It's great, and the trailer is still easily my favourite part of this game. Uh, for good or bad.

FeyerbrandX
Oct 9, 2012



nine-gear crow posted:

I probably should have just stuck with

Prince of Persia: A Wizard Did It.

Blind Sally
Jan 9, 2007

Jim's now a
Blind Cave Salamander!


Also, crow, where is the voting poll?

SpruceZeus
Aug 13, 2011



I was already well acquainted with Sigur Rós by the time this game came out, and it was really weird to suddenly hear that song out of nowhere standing in fricken gamestop, haha

cant cook creole bream
Aug 15, 2011
I think Fahrenheit is better for weather

You are really good at making extensive OPs.

CJacobs
Apr 17, 2011

I'll have what he's having.


Aww yeah, I am definitely looking forward to Princess and also Nolan North of Persia.

Also, how did I do as a guest? I have never been a guest on an LP before

CJacobs fucked around with this message at Jan 6, 2015 around 17:42

ManlyGrunting
May 29, 2014


Nice to see an LP of this game: I'm in agreement that the game has it's faults but its not the heresy most claim it to be, and I'm sort of sad to see it go as a franchise. Probably because Sands of Time wrapped up really nicely and I thought it was good of Ubisoft to try something different instead of beating a dead horse. Then again I am the weirdo who liked Killer Is Dead.

What I'm saying is that the current state of Assassins Creed is directly the fault of you reactionary motherfuckers It is sort of weird to see Ubisoft pre- "climb towers to unlock map in every game or we shoot your dog" mentality, much as I enjoyed the last two Far Cry's.

Hitlers Gay Secret
Mar 7, 2010

The Third Reich's under new -- and better -- management.

Hasn't word reached Camp Pendleton yet?


College Slice

I actually like this game more than the Sands of Time trilogy.

It looked nice and I actually enjoyed the story. It's funny because everyone seems to froth at the mouth over how much they "hate" this game. What I hate more is the fact that we'll never see a continuation to the story. Thanks Assassin's Creed. Now that is a lovely game.

Cryohazard
Feb 5, 2010


It's actually a decent self-contained story until the DLC gets involved. It didn't need a continuation of any sort.

CJacobs
Apr 17, 2011

I'll have what he's having.


I've seen three-ish videos' worth of it so far and I don't hate it! Maybe that's because I don't have any prior experience with the series though.

Hitlers Gay Secret
Mar 7, 2010

The Third Reich's under new -- and better -- management.

Hasn't word reached Camp Pendleton yet?


College Slice

Cryohazard posted:

It's actually a decent self-contained story until the DLC gets involved. It didn't need a continuation of any sort.

That's what I'm talking about. I'd talk more but:



So I'll take my leave until then. If I remember.

Sindai
Jan 24, 2007
i want to achieve immortality through not dying

Nap Ghost

I liked this game. The worst thing about it is that the platforming and combat mechanics are definitely too simple for its length. The best thing about it is one really clever puzzle moment in one of the boss fights.

Aumanor
Nov 9, 2012


anilEhilated posted:

Style change, Nolan North, weirdass boring platforming, stupid plot, everything I'd forgive - but the combat system is just so loving terrible, and that's after the freeform fighting of the Sands of Time trilogy. This game (and the subsequent murder of the series) is why I refuse to buy anything Ubisoft-made.
That being said, I'm going to watch this with interest.

This pretty much encapsulates most of my grievances about this game, although I'd add the "no deaths" near the top of the list. One thing that will make this easier to watch than it was to play it is that the voice acting in the English version is actually pretty good, as opposed to the Polish one.

On a different topic, one thing I never really understood is why everyone seems to harp on Warrior Within so much. From the gameplay perspective, at least, it remains my favourite game of the series.

Aumanor fucked around with this message at Jan 6, 2015 around 18:31

Nidoking
Jan 27, 2009

I fought the lava, and the lava won.


Grimey Drawer

In my opinion, the worst sin the game commits is not having a difficulty progression of any kind. All of the other games in the series start with easy parts, then start combining elements to increase the difficulty, then have really hard parts at the end. Because you can complete the stages in more or less any order in this game (and each stage is a completely self-contained sub-world), it would have been impossible to create such a progression. Even Megaman manages something interesting by having the difficulty curve go in reverse - each stage you complete gives you new abilities to help in future stages. The abilities in this game are limited to a few specific situations and function only as keys to entering levels, getting one batch of collectables per level, and a slight variation in what happens when you press Triangle/Y. Nothing ever becomes more interesting, there's no development of the characters (one of the main reasons Sands of Time is a personal favorite), and even the combat is pretty much the same every time. The game is constructed to be anti-progression in every sense - it has a prologue, a whole bunch of interchangeable stages, and an ending. And no, I don't really think the gameplay it has is all that much fun either. Start a wallrun, press the right buttons in time with the visual cues. It's parkour DDR-style. Even having to hold R1 to do the wallruns felt more engaging to me than this game did. And yet I beat it, bought the DLC somewhere along the way (partly in case I ever did an LP of this game myself), and haven't touched it yet.

Sindai
Jan 24, 2007
i want to achieve immortality through not dying

Nap Ghost

Doesn't the game actually add obstacles to some platforming segments as you complete levels, so later ones get more difficult regardless of the order you do them in? I remember them heavily talking up that feature before release, and while it wasn't super noticeable it did exist.

SelenicMartian
Sep 14, 2013

Sometimes it's not the bomb that's retarded.

Is this a worse PoP game than Tron Evolution?

Hitlers Gay Secret
Mar 7, 2010

The Third Reich's under new -- and better -- management.

Hasn't word reached Camp Pendleton yet?


College Slice

Aumanor posted:

This pretty much encapsulates most of my grievances about this game, although I'd add the "no deaths" near the top of the list.

Really? Because dying and having to reload from a few puzzles back was what killed the first game for me. Especially saving with half-health and unable to heal during a large fight.

Not having to worry about inane poo poo like that is why this game is higher up on my list.

Blind Sally
Jan 9, 2007

Jim's now a
Blind Cave Salamander!


Sindai posted:

Doesn't the game actually add obstacles to some platforming segments as you complete levels, so later ones get more difficult regardless of the order you do them in? I remember them heavily talking up that feature before release, and while it wasn't super noticeable it did exist.

Yes. crow calls them "timing puzzles".

Aumanor posted:

On a different topic, one thing I never really understood is why everyone seems to harp on Warrior Within so much. From the gameplay perspective, at least, it remains my favourite game of the series.

While Warrior Within is pretty fun to play, the primary reason it's disliked is because it's basically a character assassination of the Prince that people had come to know and love in The Sands Of Time. While he was sort of a loveable jerk in the first game, he's a detestable jerk in the second--the move towards "gritter and edgier" rubbed a lot of people the wrong way. Which is why they tried to explain that personality shift away in The Two Thrones by creating a "dark side" of the Prince. It's also why Nolan North voices him here, in an attempt to get back to the whole loveable schmuck thing.

SirPhoebos
Dec 10, 2007

Horned Rat-Sempai Noticed Me!


I have mixed feelings about this game. Artistically it's gorgeous and the soundtrack is great, and was enough to make it worth the play through for me. The wall-running mechanics worked really well although after a time it started to bug me that you couldn't experiment like you could in, say, Assassin's Creed. And yeah, the lack of difficulty curve in wall-running sections hurts. I could leave the voice-acting talent but its far from the worst I ever heard. Combat was never fun for me in this game, and for the amount you do that strikes me as the biggest negative.

Agean90
Jun 28, 2008


I like this game, its pretty to look at and chill as hell to play.

Aumanor
Nov 9, 2012


Blind Sally posted:

While Warrior Within is pretty fun to play, the primary reason it's disliked is because it's basically a character assassination of the Prince that people had come to know and love in The Sands Of Time. While he was sort of a loveable jerk in the first game, he's a detestable jerk in the second--the move towards "gritter and edgier" rubbed a lot of people the wrong way. Which is why they tried to explain that personality shift away in The Two Thrones by creating a "dark side" of the Prince. It's also why Nolan North voices him here, in an attempt to get back to the whole loveable schmuck thing.

That might be the reason. WW was the first game of the series that I've played, so the shift in the tone didn't bother me at all. Might also be why I never really got into SoT as much as other people did, because the combat in that game felt just miserable compared to the sequel.

nine-gear crow
Aug 10, 2013

red bird

CJacobs posted:

Aww yeah, I am definitely looking forward to Princess and also Nolan North of Persia.

Also, how did I do as a guest? I have never been a guest on an LP before

Ya did great kid. But you need to step up and start contributing your share of terrible jokes. That counter ain't going up by itself.

But seriously, I couldn't ask for a better slate of co-commentators for this LP.

...unless I can get Putty.

Mr. Highway
Feb 25, 2007

I'm a very lonely man, doing what I can.

Nidoking posted:

In my opinion, the worst sin the game commits is not having a difficulty progression of any kind.

I'd disagree with this point (I would say that I agree with the rest of your post, but disagreeing with this part kind of means that I have to disagree with the rest even though I do understand what you mean). PoP 08 does have a difficulty curve. The platforming becomes more "tight" in the later parts and the boss fight become more difficult, such as The Hunter counters more often, The Concubine gets puzzlier, and The Warrior gets more specific so that you have to orient the flow of battle. However, and here is where I kind of agree, the game remains easy all throughout. Even at its most difficult, it is still a rather easy game.

Corbeau
Sep 12, 2010

Jack of All Trades


I actually really like this game. The shallow difficulty curve is really the worst thing about it; the combat and platforming are just very different than the other PoP games, and they never get as challenging as some of the stuff that the sands of time series throws at you. I love the environment design beyond pretty much anything in other PoP games though.

SSNeoman
Jul 19, 2011




This game was loving great. gently caress the haters
I love the artstyle and the characters, especially since the story gives you snippets about them without really loading it into giant exposition blocks. NOLAN NORTH is great as the Prince.
Okay yeah the combat system isn't the best, and it does get repetitive, but other PoP games had similar problems.

People bitching about not being able to die is also goddamn dumb. In SoT/WW/TT you died, ate a game over screen, a loading screen and then you were back at your last checkpoint. Now you just have Elika save you and you're back in the action with a similar amount of progress lost. The only difference between these two mechanics is two minutes of wait time.

Aumanor
Nov 9, 2012


SSNeoman posted:

This game was loving great. gently caress the haters
I love the artstyle and the characters, especially since the story gives you snippets about them without really loading it into giant exposition blocks. NOLAN NORTH is great as the Prince.
Okay yeah the combat system isn't the best, and it does get repetitive, but other PoP games had similar problems.

People bitching about not being able to die is also goddamn dumb. In SoT/WW/TT you died, ate a game over screen, a loading screen and then you were back at your last checkpoint. Now you just have Elika save you and you're back in the action with a similar amount of progress lost. The only difference between these two mechanics is two minutes of wait time.

Honestly? This is subjective as hell, but to me the "no death mechanic" , combined with the overall low difficulty level just destroyed any satisfaction from playing. The SoT trillogy had a good system when you could rewind a fatal mistake a set number of times beforehaving to restart from checkpoint, giving you some leeway, while still maintaining a level of challenge. Whether managing to get through a diffucult fight on a first try despite a few close calls or finally finishing a platforming segment after half a dozen tries, much of what you did came with a sense of accomplishment. In this game, my thought process cosisted largely of "yeah, gently caress you too, game".

Nidoking
Jan 27, 2009

I fought the lava, and the lava won.


Grimey Drawer

Also, rewinding put you much closer to where you made your mistake than Elika's recovery ability sometimes does. There are some long stretches of DDRing in this game, and if you miss one input, you're back at the start. Why is everyone so happy that they can't just hit the rewind button and go back to the part they messed up? How is that MORE convenient?

anilEhilated
Feb 17, 2014

But I say fuck the rain.


Grimey Drawer

Aumanor posted:

On a different topic, one thing I never really understood is why everyone seems to harp on Warrior Within so much. From the gameplay perspective, at least, it remains my favourite game of the series.
Same here! The story of WW is terrible but it hit the platforming, combat and powers just right without relying on stupid gimmicks like TTT's QTEs. Also, as far as killing the Prince's character, well, let's just say 2008 really warms you up to WW's prince.
Now this game, the combat reminds me of AssCreed. That is most definitely not a good thing.

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JamieTheD
Nov 4, 2011

LPer, Reviewer, Mad Welshman

(Yes, that's a self portrait)

Keeping this first post simple: YES to Death Counter, always YES; Shallow difficulty + No death = Gets wearing quickly (Part of why I haven't finished the game); Nolan North actually does an alright job with what he's got, and I sort of like lovable jackass Prince. Elika not so much. Also the "Thick carpets" line doesn't really make sense, as it wasn't really the thickness so much as the artistic quality that determined how good Persian carpets were.

There, I didn't for once. New Year's Resolution met, back to being my usual self.

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