I like it a lot so far. I'm about half done... not sure exactly how long it's going to take, but it's going to be more on the order of 20 hours than a 40 hour monster like KOTOR. Which will be about right for this style of game.It looks gorgeous, especially the environments and the main character. The Prince has around 750 animations I think, which one of the designers said is the most for any game character so far. That's not 750 different moves, it includes things like transition and idle animations, but still.A lot of the game is made up of puzzles where you have to get from point A to point B. Mostly you have to figure out how to use your "Persian ninja" skills to get there... running up walls, swinging around bars, Tarzanning on ropes, and so forth. You've probably seen pictures/movies. Very cool moves, and a lot of them. There's also a little bit of pushing/pulling objects around. This part of the game is very well done; the only gripe I have is that occasionally -- just occasionally -- you have to carefully use all three camera modes to get a good enough look at your environment to figure out what to do. The puzzles are not terribly cryptic; I'm a little stuck right now, but it's the first time that's happened in the game so far.The other main part of the game is fighting. It's kind of like Soul Calibur but much much simpler. :-) You have a limited set of moves and special powers, although some of them are pretty unique, like vaulting over an enemy and whacking at the back of their head as you flip over. You tend to fight several enemies at once. This gameplay is a little twitch-y, and has the fighting-game property that you have certain delays enforced between your attacks. You can button-mash for maybe the first quarter of the game but then you have to actually get good at the fighting, with blocking and timing and attack selection and choosing when to use your powers. The first big battle frustrated me for a while, but I'm starting to warm up to the fighting now.So the game does have a moderate (in the puzzles) to significant (in the fighting) dexterity component. If you want something with no twitch gameplay, or something that is all twitch, PoP will be no good, since it's in-between. Otherwise, check it out.
The game's best feature--time manipulation--is a godsend.
The dynamicrange of the game is ridiculously huge. This is a problem if youplay it in a place where anyone else can hear, because the loudbits are REALLY loud, and sometimes the voices are barelyaudible. I'm not sure if this is a 5.1 mix problem or what--Iplay it in Dolby Digital, and haven't tried 2 channel. Theatmospheric effects and music are outstanding, but the overallsound mix seems rough.
The auto-camera is about average for a game like this, itoccasionally gets stuck, and sometimes leaves you looking at apillar or something instead of the action. It doesn't screw upvery often, but when it does, it's awful. Sometimes you can fixit with manual control, other times the manual control isinexplicably stuck as well.
Anyone who enjoyed Super Mario 64 or Tomb Raider will love thisgame! It's comparable to them, but superior in many ways. Sandsof Time is a very worthy successor to the original Prince ofPersia games.