Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time – Review (PS3)
Thieves in Time is a long time coming, but I have a confession to make. Sly Cooper first made his debut on the PlayStation 2, and it completely passed me by. Back in the day, I didn't think there was room for another cartoony platformer with the excellent Jak & Daxter and Ratchet & Clank series dominating the genre. Much later on, InFamous came out. It blew me away. I was so impressed with it I had to search out any other work Sucker Punch developed. That's when I rediscovered Sly Raccoon, and the trilogy was incredible. I was immediately concerned when I heard Sucker Punch wasn't making Thieves in Time. How would Sly perform under new management?
Catch up with Sly retired from his old thieving ways and suffering from amnesia in order to be with Carmalita Fox. A smitten Bentley is working with Penelope on his inventions while Murray is fulfilling his dream of becoming a racecar driver. All is well until Bentley discovers words are starting to disappear from Sly's family heirloom. One thing leads to another and the gang reunites to restore the pages to the Thievius Raccoonus.
Thieves in Time is a visual treat. Its cartoony presentation suits the slightly silly, nonsensical plot whilst adding a hint of Sly nostalgia. The worlds are very compelling, detailed, and colorful. Levels are vast with lots hidden nooks and crannies begging to be explored. The story is mainly told using cut scenes delivered in a comic book fashion. Sly is as warm and charming as ever. Bentley is a comical geek, and Murray has his hilarious one-liners.
Sly is able to add to his impressive arsenal of skills and pick up new weapons/costumes along the way. In order to complete a section, the player must use all the characters (including the rescued ancestors). Sly's sections favor a stealthy approach. Bentley handles the techie side of things, opening doors and breaking codes in mini games for Sly. Murray provides the brawn, and his sections usually consist of him plowing through hordes of enemies. Every now and then, you'll come across minigames that utilize Dualshock 3's Motion Controls, which are pretty much hit or miss.
Gameplay allows for level replays to find the many collectibles scattered throughout the game. There are bottles that contain clues. Collect enough clues and crack a goodies-filled safe. There are also time challenges, skills that can be purchased (in-game), and several extra side quests. PS Vita owners can take advantage of the Cross Save and Cross Play implemented. Plus, buy the PlayStation 3 copy and you'll get the Vita copy absolutely free. The PS Vita version runs just as smoothly, and looks just a crisp as its home console counterpart.
–Sly looks amazing, the artwork is gorgeous, and the interface is clean.
– A simple platforming game with a push for exploration; horrendous loading times between levels
– A blast from the past, Sly and his gang provide lots of laughs and heart-warming moments
– Voice acting is excellent with an excellent soundtrack complementing each time periods well
– A fantastic story, loveable characters submerged in a gorgeous world. Coupled with satisfying gameplay and lots to do for completionists, Sly deserves to be up there with his fellow platforming heavy weights.
The Sly Cooper series has always been massively underrated. Sadly, I think the same will go for this latest installment. Sanzaru's love for Sly and his antics are evident throughout the game. Thieves in Time is old school platforming at its finest.
GamerCheese Final Score: 8/10
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