Trine 2 is a trap. It’s one of those games that lulls you in with its pretty graphics, its fantastic environments and lush effects, its atmospheric lighting. Then you get close and, oh no, it’s just The Lost Vikings but with physics, and worse!
Shocking twist! This is the sequel to Trine, the 2D side-scrolling high fantasy game which everyone owns because it was in one of the Humble Indie Bundles. Outside of the graphics and a miniscule number of mechanic adjustments, Trine 2 is exactly the same. It could have been a mission pack, if those things still existed. DLC, you kids call it now. Back in my day we had our Master Levels for Doom 2 and liked it! No Shivering Isles or any such nonsense.
In Trine 2, you can choose to be a Erik the Swift, Olaf the Stout or Baleog the Fierce. Sorry, I mean, you can be Simon the Sorceror, Ezio or Adelbert Steiner. The Knight is the bruiser of the pack, taking care of the lion’s share of the combat, leaping into the fray with his HILARIOUSLY BRITISH COMEDY VOICE. Why do Americans find the British inherently amusing? We’re terrible, awful bastards. Our Prime Minister is Satan; literally the devil. Have you seen his eyes? And have you seen our comedy lately!? Do you Yanks know what BBC3 is? YOU DON’T KNOW PAIN.
Playing as The Thief, your skillset consists of a bow and arrow and a nice grappling hook, letting you swing about all over the place, which would be an awesome skill were it ever at all necessary. See, The Wizard is basically the main character, since his skills allow you to traverse almost everything in the game with very little effort. He can create boxes and long planks, then move them and rotate them to his every whim, making the vast majority of obstacles a case of “oh, I’ll stack some boxes.” It’s a shame, because it really trivialises the intended meat of the game: the physics trappings.
Physics are everywhere in this mother; shit be see-ing and saw-ing all up in this bitch. But it’s OK, because—as in real life—all The Wizard’s problems can be solved with BOXES. Unreachable platform? Stand on a box. Vicious sword-wielding skellington? Drop a box on it. Children unruly? Box their ears. Cervical cancer? Visit an gynae/oncology clinic at your local hospital, seriously. Get your affairs in order, and come to terms with what may be about to happen. With mortality. Wait! A coffin is a type of box! For corpses! Haha, I’ve pulled it back from the brink!
It’s worth mentioning Trine 2’s graphics, because they are actually amazing. Visually the game is incredibly striking and well-deserving of praise. Honestly, it must be one of best-looking games of the year. Everything is so evocative and dripping with atmosphere, much like in the first game but really dialed to eleven here. Cosmetically it deserves endless praise; it’s just a shame the experience these looks are attached to is so mediocre. It’s a puzzler where all the puzzles can be, essentially, skipped. A damn shame.
So, endless love for the game’s look; and yeah, it’s not a bad game by any means. It’s fun, it’s functional, and with two or more players it can be a hoot. The levels are too long by far, and it can get pretty samey when you’re just vaulting over the obstacles with BOXES—even easier in multiplayer, since a player can stand on a box as it’s lifted—but it’s a good crack, and worth a play just to see the awesome storybook visuals. Quite the spectacle, but gives the impression that developers Frozenbyte were Trine 2 hard.
A review copy of this game was provided to us by the publisher.