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If Lara weren't busy riding on her laurels, she would certainly enjoy a magic carpet ride. This is the game Tomb Raider should have evolved into.
Just when I was about to give up on the licensing ability of the toy company gone digital, Mattel Interactive, they reach into their bag of developers and pull out a surprisingly effective platform-puzzler from Avalanche. Remaking the PC version of Prince of Persia 3D for the Dreamcast, this Arabic rendition of Tomb Raider turns out to be better than both of Lara's adventures on the DC combined. Much like its 2D predecessors from the olden days, Arabian Nights places advanced puzzle solving over action to help build a brainier, meatier version a certain Indiana Jones wannabe. Not exactly in the same legendary company as its older cousin, this new Prince of Persia adventure has its share of trifles, but stick with the awkward universe long enough and you'll find plenty of positives lurking in the shadows.
En definitiva, Arabian Nights Prince of Persia es un buen juego de aventuras, entretenido y dificil que gustará a los aficionados al género y a los fans de Tomb Raider en especial y que necesitará dedicación por nuestra parte para sacarle todo el jugo. Una pena que haya perdido casi todo el estilo y personalidad del clásico de antaño.
The original Prince of Persia for the PC was nothing less than a seminal game -- a 2D platformer rife with tricks, traps and addictive action-packed gameplay. In fact, the now-venerable Tomb Raider was first described as Prince of Persia in 3D, which makes it doubly ironic that Mattel Interactive's latest Dreamcast offering takes the now-ubiquitous gameplay introduced by Ms. Croft and runs it straight into the wall of mediocrity. With bland graphics, poor gameplay balancing and -- worst of all -- terrible controls, so much of the game is so much of a drag that it falls short of the anemically rising levels that set the 3D action/adventure standard.
Wow, there's nothing I enjoy more than dying and having to reload a saved game—something that happened, oh, every two minutes in Arabian Nights. Yes, this 3D Prince of Persia was always meant to be a console game, even when it was released for the PC last year, and here it finally is, on the Dreamcast to boot. And man, am I ever disappointed. It's not that the control or gameplay is bad...it's just frustrating. There are hard-to-see traps all over the place, ones you don't notice until you're dead, and the save system is archaic. Overall this game feels like nothing more than a slow-paced Tomb Raider, which is just about as appealing as it sounds.
What's more frustrating than playing a sub-average game? After our disagreeably prolonged time with Mattel Interactive's Prince of Persia: Arabian Nights, very few things come to mind. Unruly and plain, what could have been a squarely middle-of-the-road Tomb Raider knockoff ended up being more agonizing than 1001 papercuts.