The name Jordan Mechner may not be one with which you are familiar. However, Jordan is no newcomer to the world of computer games. His first, the highly acclaimed Karateka, sold over 400,000 copies worldwide.
Prince of Persia follows the same style of gameplay as Jordan's first masterpiece and looks set to be every bit as popular.
The Sultan of Persia has decided to take a few months off while he searches for new lands to conquer. In his absence he has left the day to day running of the kingdom to his daughter, a beautiful princess.
Unbeknown to the Sultan one of his seemingly loyal subjects, the Grand Vizier Jaffer, has decided to seize power to himself.
Enticing the Princess to his tower, the Vizier delivers her an ultimatum - marry him or die. The poor girl doesn't really fancy either option, but whichever she chooses she must decide soon as Vizier Jaffer has given her only one hour to make up her mind.
Death is hardly a way out, but a sorrowful life with the Vizier isn't much better, if only her Prince Charming would bravely come to the rescue!
Unfortunately, the young lad who has confessed his undying love for the Princess has been incarcerated in the Vizier's dungeon. Stripped of all his possessions, can the youth find a sword and make his way to the top of the tower in under an hour?
The game is split in three distinct sections - the dungeons, the palace and the tower.
Starting in the depths of the dungeon you must work your way to the tower and rescue the unfortunate lass.
Having escaped from your cell the first thing you need to do is find your sabre. Once collected, you'll be able to face the evil Vizier's guards in a fight to the death. You'll also discover your route is littered with an assortment of fiendish contraptions designed to slow your progress.
Razor-sharp spikes rise from the ground to impale their next unsuspecting victim. Loose slabs crumble underfoot causing the unwary to fall to their death, and steel toothed gates open and close like a monstrous mouth.
Of course, the idea is that you avoid the traps at all costs. Contact with any of them will lose you valuable time and send you back to the start of the current level.
In addition to the traps that await you, you'll also come into contact with guards. When meeting one of these burly fellows you'll automatically draw your sabre and a fight will ensue. The henchmen found in the dungeon are relatively easy to beat.
However, as you progress to the later levels the guards become more seasoned swordsmen and worthy opponents. Only when you have defeated them all you will be able to pass.
Naturally, you are likely to receive some wounds. A life-force indicator is located at the bottom of the screen and every time an injury is received a portion of it is depleted. Completing the game will take quite a time and novice players would soon lose interest if it weren't for the save game option. At any point after level two, a simple keystroke will automatically save your position to disk. The game is like a giant assault course with a few deadly traps added for good measure. Completing it will be a matter of trial and error.
By collecting various potions you can revitalise yourself, but beware there are also less than beneficial elixers to be found.
Some will indeed cure you of your wounds, and may even increase your vitality, but others will contain a life-
As if that isn't enough, players may also practice any of the first four levels.
All in all, Prince of Persia is a great little game that will undoubtedly attain cult status.
Completing the game will take quite a time and novice players would soon lose interest if it weren't for the save game option. At any point after level two, a simple keystroke will automatically save your position to disk.
The game is like a giant assault course with a few deadly traps added for good measure. Completing it will be a matter of trial and error.