Despite some rather odd bugs, this game manages to stand and deliver.
I'm surprised that Gamespot rated this game as 8.6 when they gave Warrior Within 8.8. Oh well, who cares about consistency on video game sites where forum posts such as "what is your favorite button" can last for days. Anyway, Two Thrones presents a well developed challenge for the reflexes, a nice wrap up of a story for the brain, and some bizarre glitches for that might scare those gamers who play this installment while on drugs.
Let us get the negative out of the way first, shall we? On the streets of Babylon, I was climbing a pole when all of a sudden, some weird woman's voice began rattling off the names of the sound developers and engineers. Kind of killed the atmosphere of the game a bit, but I got around it. Then there was the sound issue with the cutscenes. The volume of the CGI was much much softer than during gameplay, which had you switching the volume back and forth a lot. So basically, the sound encoders must have been hitting the holiday cheer early when working on this game.
I liked the challenge presented by switching back and forth between the Prince, and the Dark Prince. It was also nice to have amusing banter back after all the doom and gloom of Warrior within. It was nice to have the time **** from the first game back, but damn does it suck to be Kaileena.
The speed kill mechanic added a lot to the gameplay. I found it to be very necessary since there are no easy enemies anywhere in the game. One sand monster down quietly is one less pain in the arse you have to worry about when you're getting gang-piled by the forces of evil. I also like how they worked this feature into the several boss battles.
The level design in Two Thrones is pretty organic for the most part, although it can be a bit confusing as to what your next move is at certain times. Fortunately, the game reminds you when the landscape camera would be useful. I also thought it was nifty how they challenged life upgrades with traps, but this can get quite frustrating if you are lacking in the sand department.
The Prince has some nifty new acrobatic moves, e.g. crack stradle, diagonal jump, chain dangle etc. But where are the new sand powers?! They are the exact same from the 2nd installment. Surely they could have come up with something like summon sand golem, or shoot sand toenails or something along those lines. Oh well, no more tears about this part.
The graphics in this game were fantastic, and really utilized the engine on my PS2 well, although the frame rate can get a bit dodgy when swinging camera around while performing acrobatics. If you are a fan of the series, get this game. If you just love action-adventure puzzle solvers, get this game. It isn't as long as I hoped it would be, but it is still worth a solid play -through in my book.