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Sly Cooper Thieves in Time PS3 Review - -
Sly Cooper Thieves in Time
Reviewed by
Cameron Grimes
Sly Cooper Thieves in Time PS3 Review. Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time is a good game but not as good as it should and could have been.

Gameplay 7.5
Graphics 7.5
Sound 8.0
Value 7.5
Distributor: Sony
Rating: PG
Review Date: April 2013
Cameron Grimes


Sly Cooper Thieves in Time
(Available on PS3, PSVita - Reviewed on PS3)

With all the spotlights focusing on the absolutely brilliant Bioshock Infinite this month, games like Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time have slipped by relatively unnoticed. Itís a shame really as this is the first Sly Cooper sequel in nearly 8 years, and in a way highly anticipated as well. But is this anticipation all worth it or are Sly and the gang as worn out as the artefacts they try to steal? In some ways yes, and in some ways no. 

Thieves in Time picks up right after the last game, Honour Among Thieves. New series developer Sanzaru were obviously aware that itís been a long time between drinks for the franchise which is why they give you the option of watching a back story cut scene to bring you up to speed. Itís a nice touch and shows off the impressive and high quality 2D animation the game uses to bridge the gap between levels. 

Sly, Murray and Bentley are back in the business of stealing things off people who steal things. Sly is just as Ďslyí as ever, Bentley is just as nerdy and Murray is just as good at eating things. All is well until Bentley notices that words from the Thievius Raccoonus, the beloved heirloom of Slyís ancestors, are starting to disappear, which means that something is happening in the past thatís not quite right. In order to restore order Bentley invents a time machine so the trio can go back in time, meet Slyís ancestors and defeat the person (or anthropomorphic animal) responsible for it all. 

Players travel back in time with the gang to a total of six ancient locations including feudal Japan and medieval England. Gameplay is stealth focused as it always has been with core combat being brushed aside except for boss battles; thereís nothing stopping you from going all out guns-blazing to complete your goals but donít expect to come back without some bruises. For the majority of the game you can choose from Sly, Murray or Bentley to roam around the world in order to collect coins and collectibles to unlock things, but I usually stuck with Sly as the stealth mechanic works far better than the combat. 

In terms of missions the game is very Ďcut and paste.í Each time periodís mission structure is as follows; observe your surroundings, find a costume that has an ability specific to the time period, find Slyís ancestor, get their cane back, and beat the boss. By the third time period most players will feel the dťjŗ vu settle in, and while the missions arenít exactly boring itís just an issue of repeating the same thing over and over again. 

Thieves in Time also features your favourite thing in the world, motion controls! Thatís right- motion controls on the Playstation 3, something that hasnít been heard of since the likes of Motorstorm. While again these elements of the game are not actually that bad itís just odd to see them being used by a game. Itís a gimmick and itís obviously aimed at a younger generation than mine, but my generation was the one who grew up with Sly so it would be nice to consider us when adding these features. 

I previously mentioned the 2D cut scenes which are fantastic. The rest of the game adopts the same cell-shaded, dark outline look of its predecessors although itís a hell of a lot prettier than them. That being said characters donít move their mouths during gameplay when they talk which seems lazy and there are often drops in the frame rate, but itís still 100% playable. 

All the original voice actors are back, for our relief and for themselves (they donít get much work other than this). They all do a great job regardless and thereís great entertainment value in listening to the characters banter between one another. My favourite character was The Grizz, a gangster rapping grizzly-bear who was voiced superbly by voice acting veteran Fred Tatasciore. Youíll be sick of puns by the end of the game though, because thereís a can be Ďpuníishing at times. 

Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time is a good game but not as good as it should and could have been. A repetitive mission structure and motion controls damper what is otherwise an enjoyable trip down memory lane for fans of the series. Hereís hoping Sly sticks around a little bit longer before once again slipping into the shadows.


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