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Prince of Persia Warrior Within
by Paul Byron on Tuesday 27th Jul 2010

The prince hoped his online dating pose would win him love

Prince of Persia Warrior Within is confusing.  Here’s a game about going back in time that is actually a game from back in time. Not only that, but it's also the middle part of a trilogy whose other parts aren't on the iPhone.  Confused?

All of which is really just to explain that this is a port of a PS2 game that came out years and years ago.  What’s impressive is that Gameloft have managed to squeeze pretty much the whole game onto the iphone, with just a few changes to the controls.

The Prince of the title has been affected by the sands of time and at the beginning of this game is being hunted by a guardian of the sands, unable to escape.  He’s then kidnapped by a scantily dressed woman and sent to a far away island, only to be shipwrecked.  Not exactly a good day for him, then.  Lots of wall running, jumping and hanging off of high ledges ensues, along with a lot of sword fighting.

 

Strike a pose

Graphically it’s a pretty impressive feat, stuffing the iphone full of PS2 graphics and making them move along pretty fluidly is amazing.  What’s not so amazing is that the controls are sloppy enough to make the game annoying, just as you hit a ledge you really want to be running along the wall but because your finger pressed a millimetre away from the right button you end up hurtling off the edge instead.  This would be fine if the game saves weren’t the sort that need you to get to a certain place before you can save or take you back too far if you die.

Another thing that might grate is the constant loading during the game. It’s fair enough to wait for the game to load between cut scenes but not in the middle of a wall jump or shimmying along a cliff face.  Sometimes it can come at completely the wrong moment, causing you to die just when you least needed it.

Lastly, the camera angles that the game throws at you are sometimes so bad that you can’t see where you’re supposed to be going.  To Gameloft’s credit they’ve added a decent manual camera system which not only lets you move the camera via a finger on the screen but also gives you different views of the level from landscape to a close up view.

 

Left a bit..

But despite these issues there is still something about the game that impresses everyone who plays it.  It might annoy and frustrate players but in my experience it seems to at least want you to give it another try.  Which is good, because Warrior Within is a long game and one that will last you quite a while, albeit partly because of the control system.  The storyline and voice acting are noteworthy too, all nicely squashed in to the small phone from the PS2 original, as are the impressive cut scenes.

So here’s the thing; if you think you can cope with dodgy controls and annoying restarts and want to witness something of a minor miracle for gaming on the iPhone then Prince of Persia Warrior Within is worth downloading.  For anyone looking for something a bit less stressful it might be worth looking elsewhere.

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  • Sound: 7
  • Graphics: 8
  • Gameplay: 7
  • Longevity: 7

7

Good


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