PS3 Reviews: Trine 2 Review

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Trine 2 Review

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Graphics:

 

9.2

Gameplay:

 

9.0

Sound:

 

9.1

Control:

 

8.7

Replay Value:

 

8.5

Online Gameplay:

 

8.9

Overall Rating:       8.9

 

 

Publisher:

Atlus

Developer:

Frozenbyte

Number Of Players:

1-3

Genre:

Action/Adventure

The side-scrolling action/adventure format has long since been replaced by large, photorealistic 3D worlds. But there’s still great fun to be had in the side-scrolling realm, and talented developers can add twists, innovations, and a boatload of creativity to keep even modern-day gamers entertained for hours. Trine 2 is a beautifully drawn, nicely paced, well designed downloadable title that makes us think, plan and react.

First off, this is one of the prettiest, most visually appealing games you’ll ever see, and that bold statement pertains to both the digital and Blu-Ray gaming universes. Rich, lush, colorful environments are the norm, and there’s a lot of gorgeous artistry. The animations are stupendous and throughout your challenging quest, you’ll often stop for the express purpose of drinking in such a fabulous fantasy landscape. It’s not like total CG quality but it’s more than satisfying.

An effective and fitting soundtrack elevates the audio to a place of relative importance in this production. The charming voice performances assist as well, and although a few of the effects sounded muddled to my ears (but only in strange situations when something doesn’t quite work, and the game’s audio gets mildly confused), I was impressed with the overarching quality and style. Like the environments, there’s a distinct and appreciated richness to the audio, on all levels.

If you played the first Trine, you’re familiar with the concept: three adventurers set out on a noble quest; you control each of the three as you progress. Only one of the characters appears on screen at a time (whichever one you’re currently controlling), but switching is easily done with the simple press of a button. There’s a knight, a thief, and a wizard, each of whom has his or her own set of skills and abilities. There are dark, intimidating monsters to face, imaginative puzzles to solve, and other obstacles to overcome.

The knight is best used for combat, as you might expect, as he has access to a sword and shield. He’s also the strongest; he can wield a warhammer to smash objects that get in your way, for instance. The Thief’s handy-dandy grappling hook has returned (as does her bow and arrow), and the wizard can move items and objects with his mind. He can also build wooden crates and planks out of thin air. This is all very similar to what we saw in the original game, and it still works wonderfully.

The premise revolves around these three characters. Each ally has his or her own health meter, and various situations call for different approaches. The wizard is usually the primary go-to guy for puzzle-solving issues but as you progress, you’ll need to the combined abilities of all three characters to succeed. Some of the later levels and puzzles are ingeniously designed, and the developers continue to throw fresh elements into the mix. It’s not just about the basics; there’s stuff like water channeling and portals to keep you on your toes at all times.

Some will say the controls and physics are just a touch off, in that some comical things can happen occasionally. But such occurrences never break the game and can only rarely be considered frustrating. Besides, once you get the hang of how this game operates, everything flows smoothly and you indulge in the artistic accomplishments. Also, don’t forget that the game encourages you to be creative and resourceful; there are often multiple solutions for any given problem. So experiment away!

There are even some great role-playing elements – again, they have returned from the first title – that add depth to the gameplay experience. You can upgrade various aspects of each character’s equipment; this includes upgrading the knight’s shield bash, and the thief can have fire-tipped arrows. The more skills your characters learn, and the more complex the environments become, the more you have to search your brain for the best possible solution. Multiple abilities aren’t only useful for enemies, you know…

Control still feels a little loose and there isn’t all that special, but the focus really should be on the gameplay, anyway. I think a few of the later puzzles are just too obscure, too; I hate having to use the hint system that kicks in after the game has determined you’re a retard. But the addition of local and online multiplayer (the latter is new in this sequel) is a big bonus, and you should convince your friends to play. It’s loads of fun.

Trine 2 is one of those stellar games that falls just shy of elite status due to a few minor eccentricities and drawbacks, but that shouldn’t deter you from giving it a try. It’s absolutely one of the most attractive and rewarding games available on the PSN; it’s pretty, slick, challenging, and even addictive. For those of you seeking the quintessential side-scrolling action puzzler with plenty of great elements and loads of appeal, look no further.

The Good: Beautiful visual presentation. Charming, fitting voices and soundtrack. Excellent design. Combination of action and puzzle mechanics is borderline ingenious. Local and online multiplayer are big pluses.

The Bad: Control isn’t perfect. Some of the later puzzles feel too obscure.

The Ugly: “Way too damn pretty and whimsical for anything even remotely related to ‘ugly.’”

12/26/2011 Ben Dutka

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Comments (14 posts)

JLB1
Monday, December 26, 2011 @ 10:09:26 PM
Reply

I played the demo, I loved the wizard. Lifting the boulders, pulling the large leaves down or creating boxes out of thin air, damn thing brought a childlike giggle out of me. I'm interested in it, but I won't purchase it quite yet seeing as how there are a few other PSN games I'd like to get. Nonetheless, I'm happy to know that it's actually a great title.

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BikerSaint
Monday, December 26, 2011 @ 11:12:01 PM
Reply

I've had my eye on this game for a while, and as Ben can vouch for, I've sent him numerous developer diaries on the making of Trine 2 as it progressed(For this non-terchie, the making of the frog was a pretty cool one to watch)

But sadly, right ATM, I'm not in a financial position to buy any games right now.

Hell, even my now-starved wallet moths have flown the (tri)fold for much greener lettuce patches.

So I think my New Years resolution is going to have to be to dive into my massive game backlog, & to start chopping away at a handful of games where either I got stuck in, or for some reason or another, I got side tracked & never totally finished(so I've re-started Enslaved & trying to do Evil Cole on inFamous).

Last edited by BikerSaint on 12/26/2011 11:20:12 PM

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Temjin001
Monday, December 26, 2011 @ 11:21:08 PM
Reply

THis really is a champ of a game. Absolutely beautiful, too.

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bebestorm
Monday, December 26, 2011 @ 11:29:12 PM
Reply

Trine is one my favorite games.. I'll be getting this for sure.

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Metal Head
Monday, December 26, 2011 @ 11:55:37 PM
Reply

I want to buy this game, but I hate digital games. When my 60 gb die, so did playing Burnout and Gran Turismo 5. I hate to download all the updates. I wish that loading games and updates were alot faster. I still need to download Quest For Booty.

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hellish_devil
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 12:26:41 AM

Some of the best games are digital-only. See Flower, Echocrome, PixelJunk Eden or Lara Croft.

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Qubex
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 3:23:25 AM

Yip Hellish... Pixel Junk Shooter looks good as well. Would be great to get a review of that one from Ben as well...

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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___________
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 2:29:00 AM
Reply

really want to get this, but i have not played the original yet.
really want to get the original, but i need to finish all the other DL games first.
my god joe danger the best DL game ever released ive only put 2 hours in!
for shame!
even earthworm jim HD i was giddy as a school girl to get that, then finally did and i have not played it once!

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Qubex
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 3:24:16 AM
Reply

Trine 2... a must have sooner rather than later.

Great review by Ben to boot... score seems a perfect fit after playing the demo...

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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BigBoss4ever
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 3:41:43 AM
Reply

best 2D side-rolling action adventure since Castlevania SOTN, period.

Last edited by BigBoss4ever on 12/27/2011 3:41:57 AM

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nogoat23
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 7:46:24 AM
Reply

Yay, Trine 2, but I'm with BikerSaint. I still have Outland to play, and Valkyria Chronicles coming in the mail.

I'll save the Trine 2 goodness for when I need a good game, but can't spend more than $20.

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CrusaderForever
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 10:02:32 AM
Reply

Great review Ben. Trine was so incredible that I dropped every game so that I could play Trine 2! I am about 75% through it right now and think it's perfect. It's been a joy to play and behold. I haven't had any control issues and the graphics are the most beautiful I have ever seen. For $14.99 it is just that much more special.

The puzzles are truly amazing as you can find different solutions hiding within. I solved one puzzle and then found out I could have done it a different way.

It's a special game with some amazing animation, detail and imagination. I finished Trine on the PC but bought it on the PSN so that I can go through it again on the big screen/PS3 for only $4.99!

There are 2 aspects to the game that I didn't like.
1. Whenever I boot up the game the options select cursor is freaking out constantly going down. I have to keep pressing up for the selection cursor to stop moving, strange!
2. They removed the artifacts and replaced them with poems. The poems are nice and give you some insight into the story. But in Trine 1 the artifacts could help you in combat, magic or etc.

The best idea yet was removing the magic bar that was a game changer in Trine 1. You no longer have to worry about your magic running out and can create 50 steel crates or however many you want to your hearts content. Of course you cannot create 50 all at once as the ceiling is 4.

Frozenbyte is premier developer in the same group as Naughty Dog. The care and special love they put into their games shines through. I can only hope that Trine 3 is already in production!! I am sure it is as this game will no doubt sell very well :)

Last edited by CrusaderForever on 12/27/2011 10:04:35 AM

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parasitic
Tuesday, December 27, 2011 @ 4:09:43 PM
Reply

I played the first Trine on my PC and I totally fell in love with the game. It's the most beautiful game I have ever played. I had to stop every few minutes and just observe everything. Being a keen artist it inspired my greatly.
I need to get my hands on the sequel, but I think I'll have to wait until the price drops a bit. Not sure how ps3 controls would compare to PC though.

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Lairfan
Wednesday, December 28, 2011 @ 12:59:10 PM
Reply

It looks splendid and plays very well (if the demo is any indication), but I think it might be a bit too expensive at 14.99. I'm gonna wait a while to get it.

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