Video Game / Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves

Bentley: Alright, it’s the crime of the century and "The Ball's" in motion!

The third game in the Sly Cooper series from 2005, and the first where Carmelita Fox is playable. Set shortly after the events of Band of Thieves, Sly has learned of the Cooper Vault, a gigantic store of the wealth that his family has accumulated over the years. He must find a way, however, to defeat Doctor M, who has taken over the island where it is located to try to break into it, with many failed attempts. Sly must regroup his old gang and recruit new members in order to succeed at reclaiming his family's history, all while still on the run from Carmelita.

This game has the examples of:

  • An Aesop: A lot of the game is essentially about being happy with who you are, and that true friends care about and respect each other, perhaps even like family, and that no care and respect towards a group of friends can be extremely damaging.
  • And Now For Something Completely Different: Ship battles are quite different from the standard sneaking around you'd do.
  • Artistic License- Geography / Physics: It would be pretty much impossible for Murray's van (frozen in a block of ice) to float from Canada, out to sea to China, then upriver into the Kunlun Mountains, especially in less than a year.
    • Australian geography is also inaccurate, as both Uluru (referred to as Ayers Rock in-game) and Wave Rock are in Yuendumu, Northern Territory. In reality, Uluru is by the South Australian border, over 600km away from Yuendumu, while Wave Rock is near Hyden, Western Australia, which is nearly 300km away from Perth.
  • Badass Grandpa: Octavio. He might be old, but he's still fast and strong enough to go toe-to-toe with Murray.
    • Faster, even! He needs to be lured into tar before Murray can properly lay the smackdown.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: General Tsao may be the main antagonist of "A Cold Alliance", but the boss battle with him takes place in the middle of the chapter rather than in the end like with the other villains before and after.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: Sly has to battle the Panda King within the latter's mind via the Guru's magic.
  • Big Bad: Dr. M.
  • Blood Knight: Murray becomes this, ironically after a period of pacifism.
  • Brick Joke: In the beginning of game, in "The Beginning of the End", Sly tells Dr.M to "Buy a knockoff [Cane] at the gift shop" for trying to steal Sly's Cane. Fast forward to "Honor Among Thieves", where there are now Knock-off Canes piled up in front of the vault. Apparently Sly wasn't joking about the gift shop.
  • Broken Aesop: While the series has had some not-so-subtle Green Aesop themes in some levels, Sly 3 takes it perhaps a step too far by having you feed dozens of miners to a crocodile, all while Murray delivers callous and sadistic remarks. It seems especially harsh given that this same level features a lemonade drinking contest, and the fact that the only environmental impact the characters ever mention the miners having is in regard to aesthetics.
  • The Caper: The whole game is a setup for a caper.
  • Cheese-Eating Surrender Monkeys: One of the jokes Murray can tell to a stern Belgian to make him laugh is on a chicken crossing the road to France, because it was not a Turkey, or a Turk. The joke wasn't really hilarious.
  • Chekhov M.I.A.: Penelope works for the Black Baron, but is never seen in "Flight of Fancy". That's because she is the Baron.
  • Chinese Vampire: The zombie praying manti in "A Cold Alliance".
  • Colossus Climb: Sly does this to the Mask of Dark Earth-possessed Carmelita in the final boss fight of "Rumble Down Under".
  • Combat Tentacles: Crusher. The player even gets to take control of its tentacles to engage LeFwee's mooks at one point.
  • Comically Missing the Point:
    Don Octavio: I know you're nothing without this little guy's brain. So I figure I'll scoop 'em out real slow and use 'em to fertilize my tomato plants.
    Bentley: I'm allergic to tomatoes!
    • In the mission where you have to tail Octavio, if you get caught, he doesn't really get mad at the fact that he's being followed as much as he does at the fact that Sly's doing a pretty bad job of being a thief.
      Octavio: I've got a shadow, huh? You stink! Back in my day, thieves knew how not to get caught!
  • Concealing Canvas: Several in the first and third levels.
  • Cranium Ride:
    • The Guru possesses a guard by jumping at the back of his head and hypnotizes him with the moonstone.
    • Sly needs to spire jump on the heads of levitating guards to meet General Tsao for the second time for stealing Bentley's computer.
  • Criminal Amnesiac: Inverted. Sly claims to have amnesia at the end, and Carmelita tells him that he's her partner.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: The characters are capable of pulling off ridiculous jumps in cutscenes. Perhaps the most egregious example is Penelope, who manages to jump all the way up to the top of a pirate ship's mast with literally no assistance at all.
  • Dead Hat Shot: Happens to Captain LeFwee after he is knocked overboard. It is implied that the sharks got him.
  • Death Course: The Cooper Vault.
  • Debut Queue: The prologue level (which takes place at the end of the plot) features a bunch of mysterious voices who are apparently part of Sly's crew now, in addition to the usual characters. The rest of the game's levels center around recruiting the various characters who appeared in the prologue.
  • Down the Drain: The sewers in "Flight of Fancy".
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Bentley has to provoke Muggshot into a fight. He isn't intimidated by the scrawny brainiac's insults... until Bentley hits him with, "Your mother is a broken-down tub of junk with more gentleman callers than the operator." That does it.
  • Evil Mask: The Mask of Dark Earth serves as the main antagonist in Rumble Down Under. When the mask possess someone, they grow bigger and become more aggresive. After its host dies, it will precede to escape by floating away.
  • Fisher Kingdom: In "Flight of Fancy", everyone is required to wear pilot caps and jackets whenever they are inside the hotel lobby. Outside, though, they can wear their normal attire.
  • Five-Bad Band: Averted. Unlike the previous two games, the antagonists are completely standalone villains.
  • Flanderization: While Murray is a Large Ham and enjoys breaking things in the second game, this is now taken Up to Eleven, as he borders on Heroic Comedic Sociopath. The guy gleefully throws mine guards into the jaws of a giant crocodile in "Rumble Down Under"!
  • Flashback: All episodes besides the first and last take place during one.
  • Gambit Roulette: One of Bentley's plans depends on the villain being goaded into revealing a certain piece of information, at which point they would choose between plans A and B.
  • The Gloves Come Off: Murray flat-out refuses to do combat and harm anyone at the beginning of the game. This changes the moment Bentley gets knocked out of his wheelchair by an unfairly powerful Octavio.
  • Goggles Do Nothing: Well, they're actually glasses, but they don't even do what they're designed to do! In the mission where Bentley and Penelope sneak into LeFwee's base, Penelope opens the chest, and gets sprayed in the face with blinding dust, which is completely effective, despite the fact that she's wearing glasses.
  • Good Bad Bugs: In-universe example. When preparing for the final dogfight, Bentley hacks the aircraft control tower. This computer system is connected to the local windmill monitoring system, and when he's finished, a bug causes a windmill to speed up, ending in its propeller flying off and destroying a dam. Bentley later uses this "windmill throwing stars" bug to prevent airship reinforcements from helping the Black Baron during the dogfight.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: The Guru, Penelope, Panda King and Dimitri cannot be selected when choosing who to play as.
    • Same for Carmelita, who's only playable during missions that require her.
  • Heavy Voice: When Carmelita is under the effects of the Mask of Dark Earth, her voice gets deeper as she gets larger.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Dimitri and Panda King were originally antagonists in the first two games, but are now recruited to help break into the Cooper Vault.
  • High-Speed Battle: When fighting Carmelita in "Rumble Down Under".
  • How We Got Here: The narrative structure of the game.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Dr. M taunts Dimitri by saying that he will eat Dimitri's eyeballs.
  • It's Always Mardi Gras in New Orleans: Sly and Bentley arrive in Venice only three days before Carnivale.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Dimitri. He was abrasive to Sly when they meet up in Venice and Hollandnote , but after the Cooper Gang retrieves his diving gear for him, he jumped into shark-infested waters to help save Penelope, and eventually joined the gang, and without so much as having a favor to excuse it.
  • Journey to Find Oneself: Murray. Also, the Panda King, though his meditation was imposed on him by General Tsao.
  • Journey to the Center of the Mind: Happens between Sly and the Panda King, in a recreation of the first game's boss fight with him. Also, happens offscreen with the Guru and the Kraken.
  • Kick the Dog: Carmelita shoots one of the Black Baron's guards for no reason at the beginning of "Flight of Fancy".
    • Also, Octavio dumps tar into an aquarium in one mission during "An Opera of Fear", killing all the fish. Bentley is understandable furious, and avenges the fish by destroying the Ferris Wheel.
    • Dr. M's introduction is him chatting up one of his Mooks about his family... to pass the time while waiting for the poison to take hold.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: The gang does this to General Tsao by stealing his money in addition to the bride.
  • Land of Dragons: The main setting of "A Cold Alliance". Like the game with the Trope Namer, the chapter climaxes with a dragon as a boss.
  • Land of Tulips and Windmills: There's an entire level dedicated to this trope: Flight of Fancy. It takes places in the Dutch town of Kinderdijk, with a full compliment of windmills, flowerpots full of tulips, fields full of hay stacks, and even a leaky dike. Two of the three flavors of mooks in the level (hares and rams) wear wooden clogs.
  • Later Installment Weirdness: There are no clue bottles at any point in the game.
  • Lighter and Softer: Than the second game, but still Darker and Edgier than the first.
  • Lord British Postulate: One can kill the ordinarily invincible Carmelita in "An Opera of Fear" and in "A Cold Alliance" by using Bentley's size reduction bomb and attacking her.
  • Mad Libs Dialogue: The pirate insult conversations in "Dead Men Tell No Tales" work like this, where you string three insults together.
  • Make My Monster Grow: The Mask of Dark Earth does this to anyone it possesses. It even possesses Carmelita, resulting in a boss battle against her.
  • Musical Episode: "An Opera of Fear", due to Octavio's desire to return to opera and forcing everyone in Venice to either watch it or have their city destroyed with tar. The third part of "Operation: Tar Be Gone" is even a duet between Bentley and Octavio.
  • Moral Dilemma:
    • Murray has to choose between following the peaceful ways given to him by his master, or save Sly and Bentley from being beaten to mincemeat by Octavio. Naturally, it takes him only a brief second to toss away peace and protect his friends.
    • Dr. M. tries to point out to Bentley that he's the true brain of the group, just like he himself was to Sly's father, and tries to convince Bentley of this. Too bad Bentley had spent the whole game having this internal dilemma, having felt jealous and angry at his life and abilities (including his disability) against Sly's life and incredible athletic ability, and tells the villain that being in charge is nice, but being friends with Sly and Murray is far more important, having realized that Murray and Sly aren't coworkers to him, but like family.
  • No-Harm Requirement: The game has a quest wherein the objective is to put a massive feral wolf to sleep - non-lethally - by shooting it with multiple darts. Unfortunately, you'll have to sneak up and shoot the wolf at close range, because the darts are so heavy. Without getting upwind of the wolf, because it can smell the sleeping potion in the darts. The player character for this mission? A sentient turtle in a wheelchair. (Possibly subverted by the fact that the goal is the mission is to psychically posses the wolf after it falls asleep and use it to massacre a dozen or so of the level's mooks.)
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Murray apparently made his Guru's hut smell bad. He refers to the incident as "The unspeakable."
    • It was mentioned in the credits of the second game that Dimitri became a dance instructor on a cruse liner. How he got himself in an Italian jail after that is unknown, but as he was in a holding cell, it probably happened just recently.
  • Nostalgia Level: At one point Sly and The Panda King have their minds connected, and Sly is taken back to the boss fight with Panda King from the first game.
  • Not So Different: Dr. M takes this to the logical extreme, refusing to even fight Bentley at first because he finds them so similar. Bentley's habits of Moral Dissonance hint that Dr. M may have a point...
  • Outlaw Town: Blood Bath Bay.
  • A Pirate 400 Years Too Late: "Dead Men Tell No Tales" features a trip to Blood Bath Bay, a series of small islands inhabited by "throwbacks" who still live by old fashioned, stereotypical and anachronistic pirate culture.
  • Powder Trail: Penelope has to race against one with her RC car to save Murray from a barrel of gunpowder he is tied to in "A Cold Alliance".
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: An amazing one delivered by Murray before fighting Octavio
    Murray: That does it! I'LL FLOSS MY TEETH WITH YOUR SPINE!
  • Precursor Heroes: Sly's dad is revealed to have had his own trio of thieves in his youth, with McSweeny filling Murray's role and Dr. M filling Bentley's.
  • Private Military Contractors: Carmelita's ape mercenaries.
  • Rule of Cool: The final skill in the "Thievius Raccoonus", as we find out in the end of the game. The laser slide.
  • Schizo Tech: Alluded to. Sly's Victorian ancestor is revealed to have possessed a flying machine long before the Wright Flyer was built.
  • Seadog Peg Leg: Captain LeFwee.
  • Sequel Hook: The ending reveals that Bentley is working on making a time machine.
  • Smoke Out: General Tsao uses this to escape from Sly following his boss battle.
  • Split Personality: The Panda King is briefly shown to have one. He actually has to talk his raging, violent half into cooperating before you can continue the mission.
  • Strapped to a Bomb: Happens to Murray in China at one point.
  • Taking the Bullet: When Dr. M realizes he can't defeat Sly, he tries to take it out on Carmelita to make him suffer, and Sly runs right in front of her, only to be hit himself. She was very pissed.
  • Technical Pacifist: Murray, for all of "An Opera of Fear". You get to fight as him at the end of it.
  • Theatre Phantom: Don Octavio is an Opera performer turned Mad Bomber after music tastes changed when his career was taking off. He takes to dressing as a phantom while running the local mafia and planning to extort the populace into seeing him perform.
  • Threatening Shark: "Dead Men Tell No Tales" has an underwater section that is filled with these.
    • Not to mention that the Guru actually had to ride them in "Honor Among Thieves".
  • Title Drop: The final episode is named "Honor Among Thieves".
  • Took a Level in Badass: The flashlight guards are notably tougher than in Sly 2. With Sly, it's wise to kill them stealthily, flee from battle if they spot you or avoid them altogether, since they can take a fair beating before going down. Heck, even Murray can no longer one-hit kill them without flame-based gadgets!
  • Trying to Catch Me Fighting Dirty: The Cooper Gang in the ACES competition. It includes them framing two teams for theft and sabotage, so they attack each other instead of Sly, having another competitor arrested, and attacking another team's pilots with a giant wolf, to reduce their manpower.
  • Unusual Euphemism: The insults and name-calling used by the Blood Bath Bay pirates. Sly even lampshades this at one point when bantering with LeFwee.
  • Walk the Plank: LeFwee forces Sly to walk the plank during "Operation: Reverse Double-Cross". Naturally, Sly chews him out for this uncreative fate.
    Sly: Making me "walk the plank"? You're the pinnacle of creativity LeFwee.
    LeFwee: Not creative! I'm the smartest man of the seven seas, you... you... slanderous scabbard!
  • Warm-Hearted Walrus: The walrus McSweeney is the former Big Guy of Mr. Cooper (Sly's father)'s gang of Lovable Rogues.
  • We Will Not Use Photoshop in the Future: Averted. When Bentley and Penelope exchange photos of themselves after meeting on ThiefNet, the photos are rather obviously altered. The photos weren't even altered by computer - they just taped an photo of their head onto a picture of someone else's body and scanned it into the computer! Penelope's real hand is even plainly visible in her picture! Strangely, neither realized how obviously fake the pictures were until they met in person.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: A minor example. Sly and the main villain Dr. M are arguing over who's the leader of the gang. Sly insists that they're all equal. Dr. M asks if that's the case, then why is it named The Cooper Gang?
  • When I Was Your Age...:
    Octavio: That's the toughest talk you got? You're-a pathetic! Back in-a my day, we had enforcers would make people pee their pants just as soon as-a look at 'em!
    • He'll also complain that thieves in his day were good enough to never be seen should you fail to tail him unseen.
      Octavio: I've got a shadow, huh? You stink! Back in my day, thieves knew how not to get caught!
  • You and What Army?: Murray says this to Muggshot when the latter sends the Black Barron's guards to invade the Cooper Gang's base in "Flight of Fancy". They all get taken down through the teamwork of Bentley, Murray and Penelope.
  • You Owe Me: This is how Dimitri eventually joins the gang. First, he helps you reunite with Murray in exchange for busting him out of jail. Next, he gives you information in return for owing him a favor, which he calls in a few months later. After you fulfill this favor, however, he sticks around to help rescue Penelope and pull off the Cooper Vault job.