Ubisoft’s first reveal of its Prince of Persia Sands of Time remake contained a release date set for January 2021 but with an indefinite delay, there remains uncertainty regarding any new showcase let alone a new release date. Given the publisher’s current focus on its Assassin’s Creed franchise, the likelihood of any news or discussion surrounding the title remains debatable.
Based on the mostly negative reception that the first reveal attracted, fans will be hoping for major improvements and advancements that are more befitting of a remake when Ubisoft is eventually ready to reveal more of its Prince of Persia Sands of Time remake. For starters, the publisher will need to address the following areas.
Upon the Prince of Persia remake’s first announcement and reveal, many fans were left disappointed and frustrated with the graphics on display. Considering its remake title rather than a remaster, feelings among series fans suggested that they believed the latter.
With the next-gen consoles becoming more readily available and the central focus for developers for new titles, not only will expectations be much higher in the inevitability of its next reveal, but anything similar to what was previously shown will most likely be met with more disappointment.
Akin to the major complaints regarding The Last Of Us Part 1 remake and the lack of gameplay changes compared to its original and remastered versions, fans have voiced their concerns. The Prince of Persia trilogy on PS2 contained the same gameplay features in terms of traversal and animations, which was praised for the most part, particularly in Two Thrones and Sands of Time.
If there is anything fans want more in light of a new showcase, it is a drastic change in gameplay that also stays true to its roots without being an exact copy. Given the amount of time since its first reveal, the possibility of a new and overhauled gameplay system is increasingly likely. Whether this means the title will be released soon is out of the question, at least if the publisher’s approach to Beyond Good And Evil 2is anything to go by.
Alongside complaints regarding the graphical fidelity of the title, the cutscenes that were showcased at the Ubisoft Forward only added further distastefulness for fans leading to many requesting that the title be redone. Some of the cutscenes featured indicate poor lip-syncing and character movements that were deemed unsuitable for a remake’s standards.
While the potential of the art style being maintained is likely, Ubisoft developers must focus on drastically improving lip-syncing among characters and making character motions much more realistic than they currently are. From what has been shown, it is clear that the story will be kept the same along with the majority of voice lines and the game’s soundtrack. Optimizing all of these along with implementing new elements to justify its release would be extremely beneficial.
2/5 Character Models
Whether this comes down to the art style of the title or Ubisoft’s unsuccessful efforts of rebuilding the title from the ground up, the character models on display in the trailer appear to be more stylized toward the original trilogy. In the PS2’s generation, character models as such were held in high praise, which is why many see the original games as one of the best video game trilogies of all time.
This was front and center amid fan complaints, particularly Dastan’s model, which many felt was underwhelming given the potential of modern technology. Due to the backlash that Ubisoft India faced, efforts to change the character’s model and facial features were swiftly showcased. Developers will still need to adjust all of the character models to a much higher standard though, as this will go in conjunction with the title’s graphics.
Out of all of the factors that are pivotal to Prince of Persia Sands of Time‘s next reveal, the combat is number one. This was arguably the most beloved feature within the original trilogy, despite the mixed reception of Warrior Within. Based on what has been shown so far, fans will be aware that the general look and feel of the classic style of combat will be maintained in this remake. Seeing how this adored hack-and-slash engagement with enemies will be conveyed is interesting for many fans to say the least, but only if it is done right.
What fans of the series certainly won’t want to see is a copy-and-paste format, which has been the main criticism for many recent Ubisoft titles such as Far Cry 6 and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. An overhaul in combat in certain areas is very much needed, but developers would be doing fans a great service if they are able to balance the intention of keeping the essence and style of the original’s combat.
A Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time remake is currently in development.