Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time will jump through time to explore the Cooper Clan ancestors.

We're enormous fans of the Sly Cooper trilogy, and have been longing for a great mascot-driven platformer on PS3 since 2009's Ratchet & Clank: A Crack In Time.

While Thieves In Time doesn't have series creator Sucker Punch at the helm, developer Sanzaru looks like its doing a bang-up job staying faithful to franchise's origins while introducing some nifty new ideas of its own.

Perhaps most exciting of these is the game's time-travel mechanic, which will see you reunited with the Cooper Clan ancestors that have popped up in previous Sly Cooper games.

"When we played the old Sly Cooper games on the PS2, we loved the stories about the Cooper Clan ancestors and their various thieving abilities," Sanzaru gaffer Glen Egan revealed on the PlayStation Blog. "Something that is really exciting and fun for Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time is that you can not only travel back in time to meet these ancestors but you will also have the ability to play as the Cooper Clan ancestors.

"As you proceed through the game each episode you encounter features a new time period with a new playable ancestor. Each new member of the Cooper clan has their own unique and powerful abilities that open up a whole new range of game play in the huge environments."

One of the ancestors you'll be playing as is Rioichi Cooper, the master of the Ninja Spire Landing. Those with strong memories will recall the character being mentioned in the original Sly Cooper game. But there's more to Rioichi than meets the eye.

"Rioichi, it turns out, is not only an uber-Ninja but is also the inventor of sushi, his famous restaurant providing the perfect cover for a night stalking ninja thief," Egan continued.

"We really wanted to explore the character of each of Sly’s ancestors (they are all very different in both ability and personality), and this leads to some very entertaining dialogue as they meet and get to know their descendant and his crew."

Sly Cooper: Thieves In Time is due out next year on PS3. We absolutely cannot wait.