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Video Game / Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones

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"One Warrior. Two Souls."

Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones is a game released in 2005 to conclude the trilogy that began with Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and continued with Prince of Persia: Warrior Within. It returned somewhat to the original's fairy-tale tone (with the arrogant Prince as a "dark side" of the character). It retained the basic combat changes made in Warrior Within with minor adjustments, but toned down the graphic violence. As well, the Prince was much more likable, and even had regrets over his behavior in the previous game. Again following the events of the previous game, the Prince returns to his home Kingdom of Babylon only to find war erupting and enemies everywhere. He learns that messing with the timeline so much has skewed any sense of proper history and the Vizier of the first game is still alive. Seeking to complete his original goal of the first game, the Vizier unleashes the curse of the sands once more, this time partially corrupting the Prince himself. Finding a darkness within himself that transforms him into a dark creature, the Prince seeks to stop the Vizier once more and return things to their proper state.

Penny Arcade made an eight-page comic for it.

Tropes appearing in this game:

  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: When the Prince falls in a pit, he lands in what seems to be a sewer of some sort, but it is quite large and outfitted with the poles and obstacles encountered in the rest of the game.
  • Action Commands: In a variant of this, the "Speed Kills" had to be executed by positioning the Prince in a specific location and were used to initiate, or pre-empt by killing off, combat instead of being used as Finishing Moves. More conventional examples show up against the bosses, which almost invariably need Speed Kills to be defeated.
  • Affably Evil: The Dark Prince is often little more than a Voice with an Internet Connection; it never actually lies to you, since he's just the shadow of the Prince brought to life by the sands of time. Nor does it seem particularly malicious until much further into the game.
  • All There in the Manual: The game doesn't tell you anything about the invading army the Vizier commands, outside of mentioning that he killed the Maharaja and took over his kingdom suggesting that their his army, making them come off as just a legion of Mooks to fight. The Bradygames strategy guide however, has much more information about them, detailing how they are made up of a massive collection of Scythian nomad tribes whose lands were being encroached upon by the Indian and Persian empires. With the loss of their traditional hunting grounds causing a food shortage, the Scythian tribes began to fragment and specialize in certain martial arts, hence the unique look of each enemy type. The Vizier was able to rally them to his side by promising them vengeance against both empires.
  • Ambiguous Situation: The Vizier mentions that when he and the Maharaja arrived at the Island of Time, they found the Hourglass, the Dagger and the Staff of Time. No mention is made of the Medallion of Time however, which they should have found just like in the original timeline. Farah noticeably doesn't wear the Medallion like she did in the first game, or at least not above her clothes. This leaves it unclear whether a second Medallion does still exist in the new timeline, or whether the Prince's manipulation of the timeline meant the one in his possession was the only one that exists.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: In the segments where you get to play as the Dark Prince, all enemies will drop Sand, giving you a chance to fully recover your health quickly. Even if the combat sections as the Dark Prince are more crowded and chaotic compared to the normal Prince's fights, at least the difficulty gets alleviated by the high chances to recover health. Also, the player will automatically recover full health when transforming between the Prince and Dark Prince.
  • Are You Sure You Can Drive This Thing?: When the first chariot race commences, the Dark Prince asks this question.
    Dark Prince: Are you sure you can drive this thing?
    The Prince: Let us hope! If I crash, it is the end for both of us!
  • Ascended Meme: One of the preview videos for The Two Thrones has the devs explaining that the Prince doesn't "smolder with generic rage" in the new game, referencing the meme from Warrior Within.
  • Attack Its Weak Point:
    • How the Prince takes out Klompa, first by plucking out both his eyes, then by aiming to the feet and finally the unprotected back.
    • You can also insta-kill Hounds when they're trying to eat your sand reserves by jamming the dagger right into their mouths.
  • Bag of Spilling: The Prince intentionally drops the Medallion of Time into the ocean in the opening cutscene, possibly believing he wouldn't need it anymore, or that he'd be letting go of the memory of Farah by doing so note , thus losing his time powers until he gets the Dagger of Time. He then loses the Water Sword when his boat is sunk by a catapult boulder, and lampshades this trope when he gets his first weapon in the game.
    • The PSP version of Rival Swords elaborates that the Prince indeed had forgotten his sand powers and can drink from fountains inside some sand gates to regain them, provided by the late Kaileena, in addition to recovering full health.
  • Bash Brothers: The Ax and Sword twins, which are only beaten when you know that they work together.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: The climax of the game, where the Prince pursues and finally rejects the Dark Prince.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: The Dark Prince and the Vizier (Zurvan) both pose an equally big threat to the Prince despite not working together.
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • When the Prince and Farah attempt to get inside the palace, they quickly find themselves surrounded by a literal army of hundreds of sand monsters of all sizes; far too many to fight. Just when it seems like the heroes are about to be slaughtered, the voice of the Old Man rings across the noise, and everyone turns to see him standing at the front of what appears to be the entire population of Babylon.
      "All hail the Prince of Persia: the greater hero the land has ever known! You have saved the people of this city, and we have come to repay the favor!"
    • Before that, the Prince becomes exhausted after killing the sword thug. Just when the axe thug is about to kill the Prince with a blow to his head, Farah, who'd parted ways with the Prince on bad terms some time ago, returns and shoots the axe thug dead.
  • Big "NO!": At several times, the Prince utters a short one, mostly as an utterance of despair, save for the very last time, when he refuses the Dark Prince's suggestion of trying to undo time again to save his father, accepting the consequences of his own mistakes and therefore freeing his body from the Dark Prince's control. A longer, more dramatic one is uttered right before the final cutscene from the Dark Prince when the Prince breaks free from him once and for all, which may get cut off if players leave the mental realm quickly.
  • Bittersweet Ending: As Kaileena observes just before the final battle, Babylon is in ruins, countless people are dead including the Prince's father, and more will likely follow as a result of lingering consequences of the devastation. Despite that, the Prince was able to grow as a person and accept what was wrong, ultimately defeating the Vizier once and for all and banishing his dark self.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: The Prince's daggertail. Painfully embedded into his arm and it can only be used by the Dark Prince as a weapon.
  • Blade Brake: Like in Warrior Within, the Prince can leap towards and stab his dagger into banners to safely slide to lower ground from high places.
  • Body Horror: When the Vizier plunges the Dagger of Time into himself to gain immortality, his back sprouts a scorpion which attacks him!
  • Book Ends: The game ends the same way the first one began, with the prince telling Farah the events of the first game, starting with the exact same line.
  • Boss-Arena Idiocy: In most boss battles, you must make use of Benevolent Architecture to defeat them.
  • Braids of Action: Farah's hairstyle falls under this category.
  • Broken Aesop: The moral of the story is the Prince moving away from his darker Warrior Within characterisation, accepting that he has become selfish and cruel especially when on the Island of Time, and learning that he has been acting like a child by constantly seeking to use the Sands to undo his mistakes instead of owning up to them and accepting the consequences. The moral is broken in that the Dahaka desired to kill him for unleashing the Sands even after he reversed time so they were never opened, and he went to the Island to try and prevent the Sands from existing. Even while on the Island, he tried to talk to Kaileena to prevent his fate before resorting to violence and found his was stuck in a Stable Time Loop that required him to release the Sands in the first place. When you remember he was tricked by the Vizier and has no idea what would happen which makes him less blameless, the Prince is being judged for breaking the time loop that required him to die and wouldn't exist if he hadn't opened the Hourglass. However later games like Battles of Prince of Persia and the Wii version of Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands do show him causing harm due to his short sightedness and poor decisions, meaning that retroactively the moral does still make some sense.
  • Bullet Time: Happens near the end of the game, when the Prince leaps off from the highest floating platform to deliver the final blow to the transformed but weakened Vizier (Zurvan); the camera pauses at the dramatic moment for a 360 degree view of the action in a Shout-Out to The Matrix, after which you get to perform a Finishing Move the moment the Dagger flashes.
  • Butterfly of Doom: The entire game was caused by one. In taking Kaileena away from the Island of Time, the Prince has changed the course of history. Without the Sands of Time, he never had a reason to go to Azad or kill the Vizier; thus, he's back to pursue his Evil Plan.
  • The Bus Came Back: Farah returns to her role from the first game.
  • Call-Back:
    • In an elevator, Farah remarks that she's heard of a similar device in Azad, a reference that Sands of Time players will be intimately familiar with.
    • When getting the first weapon in the game (a regular knife), the Prince remarks that he never has a suitable weapon when he needs it. At the beginning of Warrior Within, he lost his sword and had to use a stick, and broke another shortly before running through a dungeon full of enemies.
  • Chainsaw Good: One of the secret cheat weapons is a chainsaw.
  • Chainmail Bikini: Farah's attire is hardly more than this. It's a good thing she's a distance fighter.
  • Chariot Race: Much to the frustration of many players, a chariot race takes place. The player has to not only pick the proper way to turn, which may not always be obvious, but also ram into enemies along the way. This seems to be a favorite of Ubisoft's.
  • Cheat Code: Used to spawn exotic secondary weapons that the Prince can instantly use, each with different properties (such as a giant telephone cradle or a chainsaw). The codes are entered while the game is paused between the time the Prince gets his first weapon and the Prince obtains the king's sword while he is not the Dark Prince. Completing the game on each difficulty level will show one of these cheat codes.
  • Cosmic Retcon: Other than the Prince still remembering everything that happened, it's quickly revealed that, thanks to the events of the previous game, what was left un-retconned of the first game is now retconned out of existence as well.
  • Cowardly Boss:
    • Mahasti, once you transform in the Dark Prince. She keeps running away from one platform to the other as soon as you get too close, forcing you to activate the Eye of the Storm to defeat her.
    • The Dark Prince becomes one in the mental realm at the end of the game in that you constantly chase and attack him, and he won't fight back. If you do not attack the Dark Prince upon reaching him, the next series of platforms in the mental realm won't spawn until you do so.
  • Crucified Hero Shot: When Kaileena is stabbed by the Vizier, she rises afloat in this pose before her body explodes as the Sands of Time.
  • Curse Cut Short: The Dark Prince was going to call the Prince a self-righteous bastard before cut off by the Prince.
  • Cutting Off the Branches: The Golden Ending of Prince of Persia: Warrior Within is actually made canon, which Kaileena acknowledges in the opening narration. However, footage of the non-canon ending is shown in the intro, with Kaileena describing it as what might have happened.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Some controls and gameplay mechanics change whenever the gameplay transitions to the Dark Prince:
    • The secondary weapon button is now used to control the Daggertail, which has its own unique attack when the button is mashed.
    • The Stealth Kill / QTE's input mechanics get changed as well. If the Prince requires you to time the key presses when the Dagger flashes, the Dark Prince's Stealth Kills require you to mash the button repeatedly until the target dies.
  • Damsel in Distress:
    • Kaileena is abducted by the Vizer's mooks in the first part, and she ends up dying at his hands by the end of it.
    • Farah in the endgame is abducted by the now One-Winged Angel Vizer, and is rescued when he is killed.
  • Deadpan Snarker: The Dark Prince is an absolute master of this, as evidenced by his response when the Prince sees people being herded toward the arena below, too far away for him to help.
    Prince: I should do something.
    Dark Prince: Go ahead, fall to your death. That'll be of great use to them.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: Kaileena is killed by the Vizier and becomes the Sands of Time in order to set off the plot and make way for Farah. She is revived in the end, and declares that she will now seek out other worlds so that no one can ever abuse the power of the Sands again. This was actually quite well-received, given that most fans liked Farah better.
  • Determinator: The Prince is this in a lot of instances. Most notably when the Prince chooses to ignore the cries of endangered citizens, much to Farah's disgust. He changes his mind once she leaves him with some sour words.
  • Developer's Foresight: At the end of the game, the Prince finishes the second phase of the final boss fight by plunging the king's sword into Zurvan. In the third phase, the game makes sure you see that he doesn't have it. And just before the Dark Prince, now separated from the Prince, attacks him and takes you to the mental realm, the revived Kaileena destroys the Dagger of Time, and the game shows that the Prince only has the king's sword when he goes into the mental realm to chase and fight the Dark Prince.
  • Didn't Need Those Anyway!: Played with in some of the boss battles:
    • The first half of the first boss battle against Klompa ends with you tearing his eyes out with a few mandatory speed kill sequences.
    • In the second phase of the final boss battle against Zurvan, you have to remove two of his four wings through two 3-hit mandatory speed kill sequences, before finishing the phase with one more 3-hit speed kill sequence to damage the Zurvan further.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: Farah does; see Spiteful Spit.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: The Prince's victory over the Vizier/Zurvan may be this.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: In the ending, The Prince literally climbs the Tower of Babel to meet a god. It's a little-G instead of big-G, but aside from that...
  • Downer Beginning: The story begins with the Prince thinking he would be warmly welcomed after his adventures, only to realize that it's been taken over by the evil Vizier, whose death in Sands of Time has been undone through the events of Warrior Within. And it only gets worse: Kaileena gets captured and slain by the Vizier so that he could use her essence to rule the city with a powerful sand army and also become a god, then the Prince himself gets infected by the Sands and is periodically possessed by the Dark Prince.
  • Dramatic Irony: Farah remarked at one point that she wishes she could visit Azad someday, unaware that technically, she already did in the first game, and she even died there, before the Prince resets the timeline.
  • Dual Boss: The Twin Warriors.
  • First Girl Wins: The Prince still has feelings for Farah, despite the events of the first game being long overwritten by temporal meddling. Kaileena meanwhile ascends to a higher plane of existence after the sands are freed from the Vizier's control.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower: During the final section of the game, you obtain the King's Sword, a secondary weapon that can One-Hit Kill any enemy in the game except for the Final Boss. You'll have plenty of opportunity to use it, too. It's also a permanent secondary weapon that doesn't break, and cannot be replaced once obtained.
  • Enemy Summoner: Sand Guards are Elite Mook enemies guarding a nearby Sand Portal. If they spot you, they'll immediately try to activate said Portal, which will force you to fight through many guards to seal it. However, if you manage to keep the Sand Guards from summoning by killing them either in combat or by a Stealth Kill, the portal will remain inoperative. Fortunately even if they still manage it through, the summoned backups are still limited per portal.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: While trapped inside the burning workshop with the helpless citizens, the Prince spots a massive sculpture that resembles his father and pleads Sharaman to help him. He then ponders on his words and gets the idea to use the conveyors to move the statue and use it to crush the gates of the workshop open and let the people escape.
    Prince: Oh, Father, give me guidance, lend me strength. Where have you gone? [beat] Father, gone… Wait, that's it!
  • Faceless Goons: Unlike the former game, all the enemy monsters you encounter wear helmet, masks, bandages or similar to hide their visage completely.
  • Falling Damage: There is falling damage, but it is unconventional in that it is always lethal, meaning that a fall must either be completely harmless or immediately fatal and there is a certain height level that separates the two outcomes, though there's no way to ascertain its consistency.
  • Fictional Currency: In this game, the Sands themselves serve as currency. Known as "Sand Credits", they are used in the gallery to unlock artworks and stuff.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: Shortly before we see the cutscene that reveals the Vizier to be alive, we overhear the mystery villain telling the captive Kaileena that he journeyed with Farah's father to the Island of Time and recovered some treasures, including the Dagger of Time, the Hourglass, and a staff. He also reveals that he was already an elder at the time and sought to achieve immortality though the Sands of Time.
  • Free Wheel: Done at the end of one of the chariot-driving sequences.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: The Stone Guardian from the Gardens: one moment, you're traversing a lushful garden palace infested with enemies. Then, a huge monster made of roots, sand and stone emerges from a nearby crumbled turret to attack you, kinda like the Brutes from the previous game. Unlike them, you end up taking control of the beast to break down a series of gates until it falls dead from the wound and into running water.
  • Godhood Seeker: The Vizier's ultimate plan thanks to the Sands of Time and the Dagger. It kinda works, transforming him in a Nigh-Invulnerable Winged Humanoid with a glowing humanoid body who names himself after Zurvan, Top God and predecessor of Zoroastrism in Ancient Persia.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Throughout the game, Farah aids the Prince from a distance with her bow, whether it is to save his life or knock down a box for him. The Prince, in return, hits all of his enemies with his swords.
  • Hates Small Talk: The Prince. Made clear when he can't even discuss his favorite color or fruit with Farah without complaining about why they would speak of such things and mocking Farah's favorite fruit, the pomegranate.
  • Healing Spring: Not one body of water in The Two Thrones, but all of them. You can drink from any water you find to regain health, most notably the saving fountains, and it also changes the Prince back to normal if the Dark Prince has taken over.
  • Heart Container: Golden fountains that are off the beaten path. If you're able to get past the obstacles without dying, your health will be permanently increased.
  • Hellhound: Hunter Hounds. Monstrous hounds with fiery insides who can absorb your sand reserves and drain them.
  • Here We Go Again!: The Dark Prince sighs these words when Farah asks the Prince how he got the Dagger of Time.
  • Heroic Fire Rescue: The Prince, who's been rejected by Farah for his selfish actions and keeping his infection to the Sands a secret, discovers that people have been trapped inside a burning workshop as a trap for him. He manages to free them, and the Old Man reveals his true identity to the grateful people. Farah witnesses this and reconciles with the Prince, and the Old Man leads the citizens to return the favor by helping the Prince and Farah reach the Vizier by distracting the villain's army.
  • Hide Your Children: Children can be heard among the captured citizens, but none are ever seen.
  • Hilarious Outtakes: Included is a blooper reel of things like the Prince fumbling his acrobatics and getting the Dagger of Time replaced with a rubber chicken.
  • Heroic Resolve: When the Prince finds the dead body of his father, he decides to quit trying to change the past and accept his fate, which gives him the strength he needs to reject the Dark Prince once and for all.
  • Holding Back the Phlebotinum: In the previous game's Golden Ending (which is made canon by this game), the Prince acquired the Water Sword that can One-Hit Kill any lesser Sand Creature and severely weaken the larger ones such as the Dahaka. But because of the shipwreck that happens in the beginning of this game, that weapon is now gone. Think about it, if the Prince held such a very powerful weapon all throughout his journey here, there would be little to no challenge in terms of both the plot and the actual gameplay.
  • Honor Before Reason: When the Prince first sees Zurvan in person, in his full god-like state, he immediately tries to take revenge by rushing at him with a knife. To his credit, he was working on the assumption that, since the dagger created Zurvan, maybe it could kill him too. But even the Dark Prince points out that this was a pretty big logical leap to base an entire strategy around.
  • If I Had a Nickel...: As the Prince says more than once: "If I had some sands for every time someone has said that to me..." Also doubles as a Bond One-Liner.
  • I Never Told You My Name: Farah has never met the Prince in the new timeline, so when he first spots her and cries out her name, she becomes instantly suspicious of him and is unimpressed by his awkward excuse of her reputation preceding her. The game ends with him starting to recount the series' events when she asks him to tell her how he truly knew her name.
  • Juxtaposed Halves Shot: The cover features The Prince and Dark Prince juxtaposed on each other, and provides the trope image for Superpowered Evil Side for the longest time.
  • Kinder and Cleaner: To get rid of the Darker and Edgier and Ruder and Cruder taste of Warrior Within, the only instance of profanity in this game is just a Curse Cut Short.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: The Prince, essentially. He realizes, however, that most of the misdeeds in the world are, in fact, his fault, and that he needs to right them, but not without first bemoaning the events of his life.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Trailers of The Two Thrones make no attempt to hide the fact that Kaileena is the empress of time and that she dies early in the game.
  • Later-Installment Weirdness: At least in the first two games, it is justified how the Prince is able to collect the Sands (In Sands of Time, he directly stabs them to be absorbed by the Dagger of Time, while in Warrior Within, the Sands automatically gravitate to the Medallion of Time in his chest). But since this game is still based on the engine of Warrior Within, the Sands still gravitate towards the Prince's chest, even if he threw away the Medallion in the opening cutscene. It would make sense if the Sands are pulled by the Dagger this time, but no, this is unfortunately not the case.
  • Legacy Boss Battle: The Klompa and Stone Guardian battles are a Call-Back to the Brute minibosses from Prince of Persia: Warrior Within. Mahasti's initial phase of the boss fight also references Shahdee's moveset.
  • Lethal Lava Land: The fifth sand gate course in the PSP version of Rival Swords is one.
  • Light Is Not Good: The Vizier, upon becoming Zurvan, becomes so impossibly bright he's nearly impossible to gaze, and has massive wings. That being said, he's still an amoral tyrant, and you can get an hint of insect-like legs and pincers in his mass.
  • Lighter and Softer: It's still darker than the first game, but it manages to find a happy medium between the first game's fairy-tale atmosphere and snarky protagonist and the second's darkness and edginess and improved combat. Unlike the second game, the same attacks as before won't dismember enemies or send heads flying as the Prince.
  • Mirrored Confrontation Shot: The cover for the 2007 port, Prince Of Persia: Rival Swords (for Wii and PSP), does this with the Prince and Dark Prince.
  • Morality Pet: Farah acts as one for the prince.
  • Multi-Melee Master: Mixing the first two games, the Prince wields the Dagger of Time as his main weapon, and can wield and carry swords, axes, maces and daggers as his sidearms. Unlike Warrior Within, there's essentially two or three models for each weapons to be found (the standard one you get from all racks, plus the ones dropped by the enemies.
  • Multi-Stage Battle: Happens at the end during the final battle against the Dark Prince, having the Prince revisit places in his past (including from Sands of Time and Warrior Within).
  • Neck Snap: The Dark Prince's Stealth Kills involve using his Daggertail to suffocate and break the neck of his enemies.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The E3 2005 trailer:
    • It shows the Prince with a different outfit that resembles a dark brown armor. This does not appear in the final version.
    • The Daggertail glows blue instead of the orange-yellow in the final version.
    • In fact, the trailer itself is merely a pre-rendered CGI from start to finish.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Due to the events of Warrior Within, the events of the first game have been undone and the Vizier is back to try becoming immortal once again.
  • No Body Left Behind: Sand monsters fade away quickly, dissolving into sand, which the Prince can then absorb to aid in his time manipulation powers.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Dark Prince invokes this during one of his last conversations in the game:
    Dark Prince: "If I am selfish, Prince, it is because you are. If I am ruthless and reckless and lacking in morals, it is because you are! I did not spin myself out of the ether; I was not conjured by some mad Vizier. I. Am. You!"
  • Off with His Head!:
    • As the Dark Prince, the player can lop off many sand monsters' heads with ease.
    • Also, the axe thug attempts this on the exhausted Prince for killing off its twin, before it gets shot from behind by an arrow from Farah.
  • Optional Stealth: Stealth Kills are introduced in this game: most of the time you'll find that using stealth and the surrounding environment to take down enemies is the safest approach, but you can just barge in and attack all the enemies face to face, though things can get aggravating pretty soon, especially around Sand Portals. Oh, and the Dark Prince will usually mock you if you can't kill all the mooks of an area stealthly.
  • Our Monsters Are Different: Sand monsters were people and animals infected by the explosion of the Sands of Time. Even from the same source (humans), they can get different and variegated.
  • Pietà Plagiarism: When the Prince in his Dark Prince form sees his father Sharaman dead after obtaining his sword, he crumples to the floor in his "My God, What Have I Done?" moment and holds his father in this manner, all the while the Dark Prince's voice taunts him on how to save Sharaman's life.
  • Player Nudge: The Dark Prince can give you hints on how to defeat certain enemies or bosses, or overcome obstacles.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: The Dark Prince helps the Prince because the two share the mutual goal of killing the Vizier. While the Prince wants to overthrow him to save his empire, the Dark Prince wants to destroy him just to continue his tyranny in his place.
  • Quicksand Sucks: A deadly hazard that's everywhere in the fourth sand gate course in the PSP version of Rival Swords.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
    • Farah gives the Prince a brief one after seeing his corrupted form, saying she can't believe that it doesn't represent who he is when he willingly abandoned his subjects to their fates due to his lust for vengeance.
    • At the end of the game, the Dark Prince gives a long one to the Prince saying that his own failings are why he's still able to exist despite the Sands having faded from existence. The Prince occasionally fires back with a Shut Up, Hannibal!, but ultimately leaves the Dark Prince behind at Farah's urging.
  • Rewarding Vandalism: You can destroy items to obtain sand energy for the Dagger of Time (and also fully replenish the Dark Prince's constantly depleting health).
  • Ring of Fire: The battle with the Axe and Sword twins takes place in this kind of arena.
  • Rise to the Challenge: The fourth sand gate course in the PSP version of Rival Swords has a tower that the Prince needs to ascend quickly as it sinks into quicksand, so that he can jump to a wall to climb and obtain a sand tank.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: Ultimately subverted. One of the key elements in the prince's Character Development is his realization that going back in time to fix his mistake has only made things worse, and that he needs to accept them in order to save the day.
  • Sheathe Your Sword: You can only win the final battle against the Dark Prince by refusing to fight and leaving the room via the staircase behind him.
  • Shirtless Scene: The Prince loses his shirt around the time he first hears the Dark Prince and remains half naked for the rest of the game, although he inexplicably regains it while confronting a separated Dark Prince inside the mental realm after vanquishing the Vizier.
  • Shout-Out: The camera's pause and Orbital Shot at the climatic moment of the second-to-final battle in which the Prince leaps off to deliver the final blow to Zurvan is a shout-out to the Bullet Time mode in The Matrix.
  • Solve the Soup Cans: It's not readily clear how you should fight the boss fight against the Twins.
  • Spiteful Spit: Towards the end of the game, as Zurvan is about to make Farah his winged queen, she asks him for a request, and he comes closer, hoping for her to kiss him once more; instead, she spits in his face in defiance.
  • Stab the Scorpion: When the Prince encounters Farah and tries to awkwardly make up an excuse for how he knows her name, she readies her bow, prompting the Dark Prince to comment "See? Now she's going to kill us." The Prince dodges the arrow that kills the Sand Guard who was about to attack him from behind.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: Kaileena, a pivotal character in Prince of Persia: Warrior Within who survives in the true ending, is killed off within the first 15 to 20 minutes of this game. Subverted in that she continues to narrate the game after her "death", and is ultimately restored to her true form once the Prince defeats the Vizier.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: The Dark Prince. As part of the corruption of the Sands, the Prince will occasionally transform into what he considers an abomination; his flesh turns to sand with Power Tattoos, and he is able to use the daggertail as a weapon. His health instantly regenerates upon absorbing sand, but constantly deteriorates otherwise. He also gets a handy little voice in his head that stays with him whether he's transformed or not. The voice is the mental manifestation of all his darkest desires, who tempts him with power and constantly belittles him whenever he tries to be anything except ruthless, arrogant, and violent. It's implied that the health draining out of the Prince is actually going into him, and when the former dies then he will have full control over the body. The Prince has to face him down and ultimately reject him in order to finally put his past behind him.
  • That's What I Would Do: When the Dark Prince objects to the Prince going to rescue the people who are trapped inside the burning workshop, he suspects it's a trap on this logic. He turns out to be Properly Paranoid.
    Dark Prince: If I was an enraged Sand god intent on killing you, and you had already slain two of my best lieutenants, well, I'd be inclined to try a less direct approach. One that exploits your new-found compassion.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Farah, which the Prince Lampshades.
  • Unique Enemy: The Stone Guardian. Massive, unique, inexplicably there, doesn't even have a healthbar.
  • Version-Exclusive Content:
    • The video gallery for each version of the game is slightly different.
    • The PSP version of Rival Swords, the 2007 port of Two Thrones, extends the story with obstacle courses inside the sand gates that the Prince can disable to upgrade his Dagger of Time. It also includes additional on-rails chariot sequences accessible from the main menu, as well as wireless Competitive Multiplayer in which the Prince can race against a separated Dark Prince.
  • Villainous Breakdown: The Dark Prince suffers one at the very end of the game, screaming and begging you to come back when you abandon him.
  • Volcanic Veins: The Dark Prince.
  • Weakened by the Light: Repti are lepers-turned Sand Monsters who can be deadly enemies in the dark but will recoil and become almost harmless if exposed to sunlight.
  • Whip Sword: The Dark Prince uses a weapon like this called the Daggertail as his main weapon, and is very, very efficient with it.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: After the Prince defeats the Vizier's godly form, the game looks like it's ending with the Prince handing the Dagger of Time to the spirit form of Kaileena before she vanishes... except that when the Daggertail falls from his arm after he gets cured of his infection, it suddenly becomes a crown, and the form of the Dark Prince appears to claim it and to fight him, meaning that the game is not quite over.

Alternative Title(s): Prince Of Persia Rival Swords