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2013 Games Preview: Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time

Posted January 8, 2013 - By Adam Rosenberg


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2013 Games Preview: Sly Cooper: Thieves In TimeRelease Date: February 5, 2013

Developer: Sanzaru Games

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment

Platform(s): PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita

Sly Cooper returns! Sanzaru Games takes the reins from series creator Sucker Punch Productions for Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time, the first current-gen offering for the series and the long-awaited follow-up to 2005's PlayStation 2 gem, Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves. In Sly's latest adventure, players hop back and forth through time as they take control of various Cooper ancestors.

What We Know:

Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time picks up after the events of the previous game, with Bentley's time machine playing an important role in the story. After discovering that the pages of the Thievius Raccoonus are disappearing, Bentley gets Sly and the gang together for a time-jumping tour through the Cooper family tree. In addition to Sly, players will also take control of his Cooper predecessors in various stages, taking advantage of their unique skills to solve a variety of platforming, stealth, and exploration puzzles.

Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time Game Mechanics Walkthrough »


Fans of the series will be familiar with the gameplay, which continues to be built largely around stealth, platforming, and the occasional burst of action or boss fight. Each time period features its own set of relatively linear levels that are all connected by a central hub, with all manner of collectible Clue Bottles, Treasures, and the new Secret Sly Masks. The list of confirmed settings includes Feudal Japan, Medieval England, the Wild West, and ancient Arabia. Carmelita Fox also unlocks as a playable character once the game is beaten, complete with her own storyline to follow.

Disguises are also back, though now they're called Costumes and they're all about allowing Sly to tap into the abilities of his ancestors. While each member of the Cooper clan that you take control of has his own set of skills, Sly will have the ability to put on period-specific costumes that allow him to use an ancestor-associated ability. The Samurai Costume in Feudal Japan makes Sly impervious to fire and, with the help of a shield, projectile attacks, for example, while the Archery Costume from Medieval England comes with the ability to fire arrows that create rope bridges.

Sony has confirmed Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time as a Cross-Buy game, which means that anyone who purchases the PlayStation 3 release is also entitled to a digital copy of the Vita game at no added cost. The Vita version is said to be a content-complete port, with the added benefit of an enhanced control scheme that better suits the portable device's capabilities and limitations.

What We Expect:

Sanzaru Games might be a series newcomer for new Sly Cooper games, but the studio boasts a strong background. The Sly Collection, a 2010 HD remastering of the series' first three games for PlayStation 3, is the work of Sanzaru. The same goes for the 2009 PlayStation 2 port of High Impact Games' PlayStation Portable title, Secret Agent Clank. This is not a simple case of a studio cutting its teeth on a long-awaited sequel.

Early looks at Thieves In Time have all produced favorable responses. This is probably due in part to the fact that the series' blend of platforming, stealth, and action isn't such a common mix in this day and age. It is also, by all accounts, a series faithful take. Sly has been absent for close to a decade now, and fans will no doubt be excited to dive in with this familiar yet technically superior return to form.

 

2013 Games Preview: Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time
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