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Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown


Release Date

ESRB Rating




Bob Hoose

Game Review

We’ve seen over a dozen Prince of Persia games since the title’s early beginnings way back in 1989, when it was a side-scrolling amusement built for the Apple II computer. The franchise has evolved plenty since then, and you might remember Prince of Persia as an open-world adventure or even something closer to a hack-and-slash actioner.

But Ubisoft’s new Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown harkens back to earlier builds and gives fans a well-constructed, side-scrolling platformer packed with battles, complicated acrobatics and puzzles.

The Lost Crown assigns gamers the role of a muscular, mop-haired warrior named Sargon, a member of the Persian kingdom’s elite “Immortal” force. After fighting off a neighboring realm’s blood-thirsty army, the seven Immortals are sent to rescue a kidnapped crown prince. But for some reason, that important royal was snatched up by Sargon’s own mentor and taken to a temple called Mount Qaf.

When Sargon and crew arrive at Mount Qaf, they discover that time and space are twisted out of shape: What seems like an hour to them ages someone else 30 years. Bizarre mythical creatures, powerful gods and even doppelgangers of themselves can be encountered and battled in the mysteriously distorted passageways, hidden chambers and foul dungeons. And Sargon is called upon to unravel the sprawling shrine’s secrets before the prince—and perhaps Persia itself—meet a dire end.

As mentioned above, this game’s action focuses on combat, environmental puzzle-solving and tightly-timed acrobatic platforming moves. In fact, in the game’s early hours, Sargon won’t have the skills to best the challenges before him or fully explore the gigantic hidden map. His early combat is also kept fairly simple—comprised of rather basic, repetitive strikes on easy foes.

With time and experience, however, players’ skill sets grow based on the effort they invest. The quests gamers take on and the items they discover, for instance, give Sargon improved jump, dash and special time-based abilities.

Even then it won’t be an easy trek: The platforming challenges often require stringed-together combinations of dash-jump-shoot-leap-slide-swing movements that must be memorized and performed to perfection before passage is allowed. Likewise, the big-boss battles become extremely difficult: Players will need to  seek out, learn and master an expanded arsenal of attack and defense moves to steer clear of a deadly ending.

It’s important to note that this game requires a Ubisoft account and an internet connection for play. And this is a single-player-only game, with no multiplayer or co-op options.


In light of the fact that the gaming challenges become extremely difficult at times, The Lost Crown offers gamers a variety of difficulty settings to choose from and even an option to “custom-design” their play. (For instance, those who hate platforming but love extremely tough combat can adjust play to their liking.)

That said, the game is well balanced, and though the challenges can get tough, they’re also pretty exciting as Sargon (and, by extension, the player) pulls off impressive acrobatic and death-defying feats.

The Lost Crown also offers some interesting additions that make play more inviting. A collected “Memory Shard,” for instance, allows gamers the option of taking a picture of a point of interest and attach it to their map, giving them a reminder of someplace they will want to revisit for a quest or treasure. …


… The necessity, however, to constantly backtrack in the game can become agitating at times, especially in light of the fact that there are very limited options to fast travel around the expansive, trap-filled map. The game also focuses on a lot of deadliness. There’s only light blood spatter (The Lost Crown is rated T) but Sargon dies over and over as his challenges intensify. And each revisited area is repopulated with characters who attack with blades and launched projectiles.

This world also is packed with mythological beasties, gods, goddesses and powers. We see sword slashes and impalements along with flashy special attacks and finishing moves as Sargon gives battle to fellow Immortals; massive multi-eyed gods; undead warriors; mythological creatures such as the Jahandor (a creature with the body of a lion, the face of a man and the tail of a scorpion); and he vies for godly powers and a spiritual energy source called Athra.

Sargon and other Immortals go shirtless to showcase their ripped torsos. We also encounter some female characters who draw attention to their muscular, but femininely curved forms. And there’s a bit of language in the mix in the form of a use or two of the words “d–n” and “a–.”

The central story swirls around vile betrayal and past and present murders, both perpetrated for the sake of gaining great power.


Prince of Persia: The Lost Crown is a game of muscular heroics, tightly timed acrobatics, hacking combat and environmental puzzle solving, all locked into a side-scrolling structure. Pretty good stuff if you can navigate the light bloodiness and exotic spirituality of it all.

Bob Hoose

After spending more than two decades touring, directing, writing and producing for Christian theater and radio (most recently for Adventures in Odyssey, which he still contributes to), Bob joined the Plugged In staff to help us focus more heavily on video games. He is also one of our primary movie reviewers.