Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time / Version Played: PS3-Vita
Sony / Sanzaru / PS3-Vita / March 26th / RRP$49(PS3)-$39(Vita)RRP
Thieves in Time follows from the conclusion of Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves; Sly is faking amnesia to be with Carmelita, Murray is racing with the team van, and Bentley and Penelope are constructing a time machine. However, the words began vanishing from the pages of the Thievius Raccoonus, along with Penelope, so Bentley reforms the gang to repair the damage to the Coopers’ history and find out who is responsible. Meanwhile, Carmelita discovers Sly’s deception after she catches him robbing an art museum, and wants to permanently get her hands on him for lying to her. The story is told in little animated comic strips which really keeps it enjoyable throughout. The game also does extremely well in getting you up to speed if you’ve missed the first three games.
Sly Cooper: Thieves in time features a cell shaded graphic style. The style really works for the game and looks it incredibly beautiful throughout. The game has a variety of locations and all of these are really well portrayed using this graphic style. I’m extremely glad that Sanzaru kept this style from the previous Sly games and didn’t go for a more realistic style.
The graphics are even more of a feat on the Vita. The edges are a bit rough but I never felt like I was experiencing a huge visual downgrade when I would swap from the PS3 to the Vita. The OLED display of the Vita helps the game out as well. Colours are more vibrant and everything seems to pop that little bit more in your hands.
Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time is laid in different time periods. You start in a central hub where you choose your character based on jobs available. I felt like this really suited to the strengths of the Vita. Being able to play shorts missions at a time really suited to me being able to play on a small train trip or in between tasks. I like the fact that the game gives you clear points to have a rest and to me it felt like the perfect portable game. Cross Saving from the PS3 + Vita works a charm as always and really made the experience so much nicer, knowing that I could continue my game on the go.
The game as a whole was a breath of fresh air. Especially when playing on my PS3, it really took me back to the platforming days of PS1/PS2. The game keeps you interested the whole way along through a bunch of completely different characters and skill sets. Pairing this with more than 5 completely different worlds kept the game interesting the whole way through. There is also a bunch of mini games to keep you occupied which is a nice touch when you feel like you need a break from the main game.
In typical old school platforming fashion, the game has a bunch of collectables in each world. You’ll be climbing across rooftops and trying to jump to hard to reach spots for hours trying to collect that last treasure. I feel like the main issue that Sly has is loading times. Escpecially on the Vita, everything takes a good 30 seconds to load. From leaving the hub, to starting your mission to entering a new area. It makes the whole experience feel a little disjointed however I can see why the Vita needs so much time to load this game so it’s still hard to flaw it. I didn’t notice this on the PS3 as much.
I would absolutely recommend this game to anybody who owns a Vita or PS3. At a budget price of $49, you’re getting both the PS3 + Vita version and a flawless cross saving experience. If you haven’t played the first 3 Sly Cooper games then don’t let that deter you from what is an absolute classic platformer and a breath of fresh air in the current market.