Hands-on With Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time

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Hands-on With Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time

Earlier this week, Rey and I visited Foster City-based Sanzaru Games, the developers of this fall’s Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time. As the first original PS3 entry in the classic PS2 thieving series, and the first to be developed outside of Sucker Punch Studios, Thieves in Time represents a long-awaited return to form as well as a natural entry point for series newcomers.

Where Sly 2 and Sly 3 let you slip into the roles of Sly’s partners in crime, Thieves in Time expands upon that concept by granting you control of Sly’s infamous ancestors — the Cooper Clan members named in the hallowed pages of the Thievius Racoonus. In one chapter set in ancient Japan, I played as Rioichi, Sly’s sushi-slinging ninja ancestor. Slinking past sleeping guards while searching for a special set of sushi knives, I used Rioichi’s Leaping Dragon ability to soar through laser fences and other high-tech traps designed to derail the Cooper Clan’s devious destiny. Other playable ancestors, including the medieval knight Sir Galleth Cooper, promise to bring more specialized skills to Sly’s moveset. In our chat, Sanzaru President Glen Egan was careful to point out that the playable characters are designed to expand upon Sly’s stealthy skillset, not subtract from it.

Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time for PS3

Thieves in Time further advances the series’ sneaky formula through collectible Costumes that grant Sly new powers. The Archer costume fires an arrow-tipped tightrope that bridges the gap to otherwise inaccessible new locations. Costumes will also come in handy if you set out to find all the hidden Clue Bottles and myriad collectible items scattered throughout the game’s sprawling levels. Like Sly 2 and Sly 3, Thieves in Time’s open-world design gives you the freedom to splinter off on side quests or re-explore old areas. Sanzaru has even added a handy Compass that points out your next goal — a thoughtful addition, especially given the sheer size and increased verticality of the new environments.

As always, Sly is more agile than other would-be platformer heroes. Rather than line up each jump perfectly, you can leap into the air and tap Circle to land on a platform auto-magically. Though I badly bungled my first platform jumping exercise, within minutes I was zipping through a withering series of jumps at top speed — an exhilarating, empowering feeling, especially if you’ve ever felt victimized by ponderous platform-jumping segments in other games.

Have questions about Thieves in Time? Leave them in the comments and I’ll leave responses over the weekend.

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  • Amazing footage so far. It looks just like Sly 2 & 3, but with more goodness. Easily one of my top 3 games for 2012. But hey Sony, any word on that collector’s edition, yet?

  • Some more feedback:

    As I can see, Rioichi has the same “job complete” animation as Sly. I think you should definitely give him his own. It would add a lot more personality to the character. And, as you said, the ancestors are not clones of Sly, so please fix that!

    The music is really good, by the way! Is it from the game?

    Thanks again!

  • It’s nice to still have new releases to be excited about! I kind of been stuck playing all the HD releases since so few developers are making new stuff I actually like!

    Finished the Sly Collection near release. Can’t wait to get my greedy hands on the new one.

  • Okay so I have two questions bugging my head since a while back:

    1.) Will we be able to play as other gang members, such as Penelope, Guru, Panda King, not just the regular three.

    2.) Is there going to be difficulty options, and if not, is the difficulty level going to be on the same notch as the previous games, or a bit harder?

    On a side note, this game shouldn’t be made to aim at a younger audience in general as most of the fans have now grown a lot older.
    Thank you very much :)

  • 1. will there be vehicles in the game that you can drive or fly

    2. will you get to use costumes from one world in a different world

  • i know in thieves in time you get to play as your ancestors but will it be like sly 3 where they follow you to each level or is it just for that episode?

  • Any news on the possibility of a collectors edition?

  • Dear Sanzaru Games

    here are 5 questions.

    1. how many episodes will there be?

    2. in this video i saw a small picture of (maybe) salim al kupar, whas it him?

    3. is it going to be any co-op?

    4. is the ancestors only in that specific episode or?

    5. and why is sir galleth so like sly? hes like a copy for me. without the beard.

    your (annoyed of waiting for sly) fan bjarne321.

  • ok ive got a few questions for you sid , so here goes:
    1) What role does Penelope have to play in the game, ive got a feeling she’s not going on this journey with sly and the gang.
    2) will there be a “Adventures of Sly Cooper #3” comic to follow the pattern of the old games?
    3) do you know if we’ll get a demo soon? (i dont mean one that comes out a week or 2 before release date) because i thought, that because its been 7 years, sanzaru would give us a taste of sly early, they could give us the 2 recent missions they’ve shown and part of the pax 11 mission.
    4) can you ask sanzaru to make some sly collection DLC, it wouldnt be adding anything that wasnt in the originals, it would just re-add the things sanzaru took out, fix glitches and give us the sly 3 mega jump.
    5)will sucker punch make sly 5, or will sanzaru make it?

    well thanks, i hope you can answer my questions.

  • Will there be a demo coming out soon


  • are sly and carmelita married?

  • I’m hoping we’ll get some more information on the other members of the gang and Carmelita, but some gameplay for Bentley or Murry would be great too, but the the best would be the release date.

  • Huge fan of the franchise, and the brief demo I saw is spot on to what made the series fun and great. Very excited for this one!!

  • I really am hyped for this game, but there is something that hasn’t yet come up.
    Are you using any sixaxis in this game. For example, when Sly shoots an arrow to create himself a path. It would be nice to hear your ideas for motion stuff.

    But overall – this will be a great game!

  • Do you know how many ancestors would be in the game?

  • The expansions and the fixes you guys are adding to this game is just amazing. The graphics are better, the moves and variety are awesome, the costumes, the collectables, the skill tree, the ancestors! You guys are just doing a fantastic job.
    I just can’t believe we have to wait until FALL! This game must be harder to make then it looks!

  • A response to SlyCooper9087:

    I think all the ancestors from that treasure gauntlet at the end of Sly 3 will be featured in this game. They were prominent enough to get in there, they might as well be the ones to be showcased in Sly 4.

  • Dear Glen,
    I was wondering, are all of those gameplay videos seen since June 2011 part of a demo being made for PlayStation Network?

  • SuperSayianDaint

    Hey Glenn could u maby hit at if sly father will be a playble ansestor


    How cool would it be for them to release a demo of this game between NOW and Summer or late Spring of 2012? NOW THAT WOULD BE AMAZING! I cannot wait for this game!

    I also am the creator of the original Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time Collectors Edition.

    Youtube my name : SlyTiTimeCE

    I have one video and it is of that petition… I believe I have around 550 + signs? :D Last time I check which was a good while ago haha.

    Check it out! Also spread the word!

    So main question here: Can we have a demo to be released a good while before the actual game itself? Something similar to the Sly 2: Band of Thieves demo in Rachet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal… it was episode 1, and only a few missions… I believe a total of 5. We could probably get a demo of the Rioichi level since we know so much about it! What do you say? ;)

  • Correction*

    “I also am the creator of the original Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time Collectors Edition*PETITION* .”

  • I wonder who will do the voice of The Collector? Ron Perlman? Jeff Bennett? Mark Hamill? The possibilities are infinite!

  • Glen, if you can leave a response, that would be great.
    I was wondering, if you guys are going to conclude the series with Sly 4, I mean Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time, can you make it so it’s like “BAM! Didn’t see that coming!” and, exactly how are the pages of the Thievius Raccoonus disappearing. Is a guy going back in time and screwing with the normal course of history? Cuz’ we saw lasers in fuedal Japan! I don’t think they had flashlights at that time!

  • Cool! I still cant wait! Although it is true we NEED a PSN demo soon. I hope Bentley and Penelope are still a couple, they are really good together. Im wondering if the other characters like Penelope, Guru, Dimitri, etc. will come with them and help out with the jobs like in sly 3.

  • Can you guys make it so that after you complete a mission you can re enter the area again? For example, on sly 2 there is a mission where you go into a cellar and after you complete the mission your able to re enter it anytime.

  • what i thought it was Sucker Punch who made this games?

  • can you guys make a ps vita version of sly cooper????????????????

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