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Trine 2 [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Trine 2's simple concepts, easy controls, goregous graphics and quirky humor provide that 'fun for all ages' feeling that is often refered to on the back of the box, but rarely ever captures.

The Pros: 

+Beautiful art work.

+Quirky sense of humor.

+Great use of co-op

+'Short and sweet' story campaign.

The Cons: 

-Playing in multiplayer, only Player 1 can purchase upgrades for his team. Rating : 

While the site went in a bit of a ‘black out’ mode over the holiday seasons, believe it or not, video games continued to be released. One of them was a game that I was eagerly anticipating, but didn’t manage to get around to until the new year.

Trine 2 is a sequel to a nifty little side-scrolling adventure game that came out back in 2009 and, while it did manage to snag the love of a few, didn’t really get the recongization that I felt it deserved. The game provided a unique angle on the puzzle/platformer/adventure genre by providing the player the option of switching between three characters on the fly to help them navigate the world and complete all manner of puzzles: There was a thief who was nimble, fast, and utilized a bow-and-arrow for ranged combat, as well as a grappling hook to navigate the world. The wizard, who had the ability to create objects out of thin air, and then move them around; allowing players to build to new areas or manipulate objects within the world to get to new, previously inaccessible locations. Then finally, the warrior, he was a bulky damage machine with a sword and shield built primarily to handle the game’s combat portions.

Processor Intel® Core™ i7 2600K Processor
CPU Cooler Thermalright Silver Arrow
Motherboard Asus Maximus IV Extreme-Z
Graphics Dual AMD Radeon HD 6970 Graphic Card
Memory G.SKILL Sniper Low Voltage Series 8GB PC3-12800 Dual Channe DDR3 kit (2 x 4GB)
Hard Drive Crucial M4 SSD 128GB (Operating System)
WD 1TB Caviar Black 7200 RPM SATA III w/64MB Cache (Storage)
Optical Drive LG BH12 Super Multi Blue 12x Internal SATA Blu-ray Disc Writer w/ Lightscribe
Chassis Thermaltake Level 10 GT Snow Edition
Power Supply Corsair Professional Series Gold AX 850W Power Supply
Operating System Windows 7 Professional 64bit

The original Trine had charm by the truck-load and ended up being a fun short-form game that gave a bit of a Portal-esque vibe; not so much in the sense that it was a puzzle platformer with cred in the indie gamer circles, but just in how it portrayed itself, not taking things too seriously, keeping it light and fun.

Trine 2, thankfully, builds on all the concepts that made the original Trine such a unique little gem, and comes back with something that looks like it was backed (heavily) by a major publisher. It is easily one of the best looking games of the previous year, and didn’t have to sacrifice any of the charm of humor of the original titles to get it.

The game starts off with the Trine (a magical object that acts as the game’s deus ex machina, flying about the world an lumping our characters together for its own purposes) re-establishing our group of estranged heroes for another quest. The story line is simple, but interesting enough to keep players going, as with its predecessor though it is not what I would consider its focus. Instead, the focus of Trine 2, as I see it, is to deliver a unique and fun experience, which becomes amplified if you can get a couple of buddies together to join you on your adventure.

At only about 3-4 hours long, it provides a short and sweet bit of gaming for players… which works out well for my group of friends, because more often than not it’s hard to get three people together for a period longer than that.

As with any other multiplayer co-op title, the fun in the game expands beyond what the game offers at its core: the world navigation, helping one another to complete objects, and treasure hunting. Where things, inevitably, get interesting is when you and your friends turn on one another and start using your unique abilities to hinder one another, which is where you’ll probably want to make sure you’re playing at the wizard…

Along with a major upgrade on the graphics of the game, Trine 2 also offers a little more of an RPG/dungeon-crawler feel than its predecessor. This comes through the inclusion of a levelling system, as your characters progress through the game you’ll be awarded with upgrade points, which can be used to increase the individual powers of each character. Some examples being: increased blocks for the wizard, fire arrows for your thief, or the ability to throw your warrior’s hammer.

Unfortunately Trine’s charm and the reasons for player to play it are hard to put into words. It really is one of those games that you need to get into for yourself to understand why people that have played it love it so very much. The game is one that evokes that true sense of gaming, where players aren’t as concerned with some intricate twisted plot line of blockbuster proportions… or one where the game controls are so expansive that you’ll never be able to figure out exactly what all the buttons or combinations of buttons do for you. It is gaming at its core: simple casual fun that you can share with your friends, and the best thing is that it will provide you with a full experience in short-form, which is something that few try to bother with these days and feels like a rather under-utilized advantage (especially for downloadable games).

This review is based on a download for the PC supplied by the Publisher.

Trine 2
Publisher: Atlus
Developer: Frozenbyte
Platforms: PC (Reviewed), Xbox Live, PlayStation Network
Release Date: December 7th (PC), December 20th (XBLA, PSN) 2011
Price: $14.99 (1200msp)