Prince of Persia: Warrior Within is the 2nd installment of the "Prince of Persia" series; a well-known third person fantasy action-adventure series of games by Ubisoft. This game continues the story of the previous game, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Improved graphics, much improved combat mechanics, good story and music are the key features of this game.
Prince of Persia: Warrior Within is set in a time period which is 7 years ahead of the first part (Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time). But many times in the journey, Prince will have to travel way back in time through magical time portals. The whole game is set in the 'Island of Time', the birth place of the "Sands of Time".The inhabitants of this place are all sand creatures, but they're not some infected beings. They are completely natural (said to be created by the "Empress of Time"); so that means you don't have to 'finish' them by taking sands out of them, you can kill them as you kill any other living being. This concept eliminated the process of taking the Sands out of a downed/grounded enemy, which feels a bit frustrating at the later stages of the previous game.
This game is also played from a third person view, with all the camera features of the previous installment. In the previous review I forgot to discuss the 'landscape camera'. Which is a different camera angle. In it, there is a pre-set camera position which is pretty far from the Prince and cannot be moved; but it can be zoomed in or out with the movement of the mouse. This view can be helpful when you're having trouble to find the way to go and it also shows off the artwork done by the game's artists. It can be accessed by pressing a button of the keyboard.
Our hero or protagonist is the same as of the Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time; the Prince. However this time around he is a much better swordsman or let's just say a warrior. It makes sense though. 7 years have past, so he had enough time to heavily increase his abilities in combat. And this concept brought many good changes to the combat mechanics; although other gameplay features remained unchanged except few exceptions. His model have been changed also, because he is older now. Here's how the Prince looks now.
The game starts in a ship, on which the prince is travelling to the 'Island of Time' with some of his soldiers and sailors. But then suddenly something will happen for which the Prince will have to start fighting. You(the player) will now have to take control of the Prince and fight your way through the ship.
Not like the previous game where you can get only one sword beside your magical dagger, in this game you can pick up any dead enemy's weapon (not the boss enemies) as your secondary weapon. Prince holds his main weapon in his right hand and the secondary weapon in his left hand. This time around Prince can pull off much more agile moves, which are combo moves of the main sword and the secondary sword. These combo moves can be performed by pressing the buttons for wielding main and secondary weapons in a pre-arranged sequence. You'll have to remember the sequences in order to pull the combo moves off in combat. They work well, feel good and are easy to remember. These combo moves made the combat much more enjoyable. Main weapon upgrades are available throughout the game.
When the Prince only has his main weapon (no secondary weapon; empty left hand) he can pull off some grappling moves. Like grapple throw, grapple slash, strangle, steal weapon kill etc. And some agile moves like mid air steal weapon kill, aerial slash, kicking enemy while coming down etc.
There are two types of wall-rebound attacks, column attacks, counter-attacks & wall-running attacks. All of these moves can be performed with or without a secondary weapon. To do the counter-attack in the previous game you had to start your attack just before the moment your enemy's attack hits your sword. But in this game you have to start the attack right after the moment your enemy's attack hits your swords, this makes counter-attacking easier. New moves like column-attacks and wall-running attacks are cool, especially the vertical wall running attacks. When you have a secondary weapon you can just throw it to your enemy, this will cause him/her damage and he/she will be stunned for a short period of time. Now Prince can get up from the floor in a few different manners, even offensively. Which makes it easier to recover after being downed by an enemy. The number of moves that you could pull off while on a ladder or on a beam have been decreased. Maybe because you'll not face as much enemies there as you did in the previous game.
Enemy models are totally changed. There are no same enemy from the previous game. In this game most enemies are not immune to any of the Prince's attacks but a enemy type at the later stages can defend Prince's attacks; only two types of enemies are immune to Prince's jumping from them aerial attacks. Prince will encounter enemies on beams, ledges and while horizontally running on wall.
Killing a enemy will automatically bring his Sands to Prince's amulet. Killing one enemy will fill one sand tank (the small circles on the game's HUD are the sand tanks, they show how much sands of time the Prince has. When a circle is bright yellow, it means it is filled. When it's dark, it is empty). There are some Sand attacks which the Prince can perform, these are special Sands of Time powers apart from reversing and slowing down the time. Prince will gain more special Sands of Time powers as the game progresses. These special powers are very useful if executed at the right time.
Amount of boss battles have been increased in this game. There were only two boss battles in the previous game, in this one there are 6 or 7 (you'll understand after playing the game why I used two different amount of boss battles).
Prince of Persia franchise's core gameplay feature parkour or free running hasn't been changed much from the previous game. The only changes I spotted were - Now you can't swing with ropes; cause all the ropes are now hanging from the walls, aiding Prince's horizontal wall run. You can use curtains hanging from the wall to slide down slowly from great heights by stabbing one of your weapons into it and tearing it up as you descent. You'll have to jump from one curtain to another or any environmental thing (such as:- ladders, poles, columns etc), later in the game.
In this journey Prince will have no companion with him, he'll be totally alone. That means there will be no one to aid him in his combats, though Farah's help in combat in the previous game was very little. You can easily live without it, especially with a more powerful Prince.
Now for saving your game you'll have to drink water from the fountains which will come in your path, doing so will replace your health to it's maximum value. To increase the maximum value of your health, you'll have to go through some trapped hallways to their ends. Those trapped hallways are hidden in the Prince's path. The booby traps now look more dangerous, and are more dangerous. They will cost you huge amount of health if you get caught in them.
In this game avoiding the traps are bit more difficult. But our prince can control time in this game too. The source of those powers is the Prince's amulet, which he got from Farah in the previous game. That amulet can also control time using the Sands of Time like the dagger of time. This fact was unknown to everyone in the previous game. Ubisoft told this to us in their official manual of Prince of Persia: Warrior Within.
A map system has been added in this game, which shows your current location in the 'Island of Time'. But it is not helpful at all. Because it's mostly a linear game, it gives you very little freedom of approach in some places of the game. So the map is unnecessary.
Galleries of pictures and videos have been added in this game. The contents of those galleries are all locked at the starting of the game. The videos of the video gallery will unlock as the game progresses and to unlock the artworks/pictures of the picture gallery, you'll have to find & break some crates which are hidden in the Prince's path. But to unlock the illustrations gallery you'll have to finish the game successfully.
The game's soundtrack is pretty good (one my favourites). In this game music creates a great atmosphere. In some places scary musics make playing the game frightening and in some other places rock musics make you a better fighter. The mixing of Persian & rock music styles worked well in this game.
This game's story is complex but everything will be clearer as the game progresses. In this game Prince's main enemy is the Dahaka, who is the guardian of the timeline. The timeline says that anyone who opens the Sands of Time must dye. So the Dahaka is trying to catch & kill the Prince. Dahaka is an unstoppable beast, Prince can't fight against it. So every time when Dahaka finds the Prince, he had to run away. But it's not easy to escape from the Dahaka, it can break through walls and obstacles and can jump really long distances. When it walks, the earth trembles and every colour fades away when its near. Tentacles of Dahaka comes out of every where, from ground, walls & even roofs sometimes (but they don't harm). In the game, whenever the Dahaka finds the Prince there is a chase sequence, which are known as "Dahaka chases". At that time you have to take control of the Prince and run from Dahaka using Prince's parkour abilities. If you're too slow the Dahaka will catch & kill you, so you'll have to be as quick as possible. Some chases are long and some are very short. But all of them give you a tensed situation in gameplay.
At the end of this journey Prince will think that everything has been settled down but he will find out how wrong he was and what trouble he caused to his people(the people of Babylon) in the next game, Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones.
- Good graphics
- Good music
- Very good gameplay
- Good storyline
- Artwork galleries
- It is a bit frustrating when you're having trouble finding the way to go
- Map system is not helpful