Cozy Up This Weekend With a Loved One and Indulge Yourselves in the Beautiful Medieval-Fantasy World of Coop Trine – On Sale Now
Family, friends and partners - we all have them, we all love them and we can’t do without them, but sometimes it isn’t exactly easy to do with them either. Especially when that “sometimes” is the designated video game time.
I’ve had many instances in which my need for gaming caused me to be bugged by my family for not attending joint Sunday lunches, or get patronized by my wonderful girlfriend for not spending more of my free time with her, so in order to evade future incidents I started to compromise. As making compromises is (unfortunately) a daily part of being an adult social creature, I decided to mix the best of both and spend my free time with my loved ones by playing coop games. This way my family, friends and girlfriend get their daily dose of my wonderful-self, while I get my gaming fix without being nagged later on.
This is how I discovered the Trine Trilogy, a series of side-scrolling adventure games that feature some amazing fantasy environment and exciting puzzles that can be played in a local Coop.
Trine was developed by the Finnish Frozenbyte and published by Nobilis. The first part of the series was released back in 2009, with the Trine 2 coming out in 2011 and Trine 3: Artifacts of Power appearing in 2015. In between the last two parts, there was also a remake of the original, titled Trine: Enhanced Edition which was released in 2014.
The plot of all three Trine games (we do not count the remake of the first as only the graphics were improved, while the story stayed the same) follows the adventures of three playable protagonists, Zoya the Thief, Amadeus the Wizard and Pontius the Knight. The first game starts out in a ruined kingdom which is under the invasion of undead forces. The kingdom is home to the Astral Academy, a place where wizards and mages study the powers of magic and mysterious artifacts. Due to the war, the Academy is in disarray and mostly abandoned, which thief Zoya uses as an opportunity to break into, in hopes of stealing valuable treasures. At the same time, the clumsy wizard Amadeus wakes up from his long sleep which came as a side effect of a fireball spell gone wrong. Having slept through the invasion and the abandonment of the Academy, Amadeus wanders the hallways in confusion until he meets Pontius the knight. The brave knight took up arms in order to protect his kingdom and the academy, but was a little late to the party, as his big frame and huge stomach made him slow. From there the two proceed to the treasure vault where they discover Zoya stealing one of the artifacts. In an attempt to stop her, all three grab a hold of Trine, an artifact which binds the souls of persons that touch it. The trio disappears and spawns inside a tomb of the artifacts’ original guardian where they read a stone inscription saying that their souls are now bound and that they cannot exists without each other. The inscription further says that the only way to unbound is to recover the other two Trine artifacts which were stolen and corrupt by evil, thus causing the rise of the undead army which has taken over the kingdom. From there the trio sets out on an epic adventure in order to return the missing artifacts, restore the order to the kingdom and liberate their souls.
From left to right: Amadeus the Wizard, Zoya the Thief and Pontius the Knight
For Trine 2 and Trine 3, I cannot say much regarding the plots, as the sequels are somewhat interconnected and I’d hate to spoil it for you, however I will say that Trine 2 features Goblin enemies and some crazy-looking Goblin War Machinery, while Trine 3 takes our heroes to exotic destinations in a fight against rock monsters and Spriggan-looking creatures.
In regard to gameplay, in all three parts, the player(s) are able to control any of the mentioned characters from the very start. As the game features three protagonists, up to three players can join the coop and play simultaneously on one screen. There is also an optional selection, where one character can be used by more than one player, however, this play-style can be challenging as every character has a unique set of skills which are used to overcome obstacles, defeat enemies and solve puzzles.
As such, the wizard can create levitating boxes, planks and pyramids which serve as platforms to reach high places and overcome deep holes, lava pits and acid rivers. Wizard can also use his levitating spells to hilariously pick up enemies, swing them in the air, throw them on the traps and even set them up for thief’s or knight’s attacks. Wizard’s spells come in very handy when combined with Zoya’s abilities. The thief is highly maneuverable and is able to jump off wizard’s platforms and boxes with relative ease. She is also able to use her grappling hook to latch onto levitating pyramids and swing from them. The bow and arrow are her primary weapons which she uses to attack enemies and shoot off ropes and switches and/or set off traps. Thief also features an optional upgrade where she can shoot fire arrows or activate an invisibility mode so she can sneak past enemies. Knight Pontius is on the other hand, a character used for heavy melee attacks and protection of the group. He is the least maneuverable character due to his size, but he is able to operate heavy switches with ease as well as use his weight to balance planks. His sword is his main weapon for close attack, but he also has an unlockable Warhammer which can be thrown around. Pontius also handles a shield whose purpose is to protect the group and hold off enemy waves. The shield can also be used for bashing and running through a group of enemies, as well as gliding massive Pontius from a higher platform to the lower without risking fall damage.
All these and many more abilities are unlockable trough gaining experience points and collecting treasures.
Trine and Trine 2 Skill Trees and Inventory - Notice the Hilarious Monster Levitation Skill on the right
Graphic-wise, all three Trine games are absolutely beautiful. The environment is very fantasy-like with colors that fit perfectly with the level design and scenery. The fact that some of the levels feature puzzles that require the use of environment (such as, turning the plant leaves to control the flow of water and apply pressure to a switch) are an excellent touch, as they further emphasize the great graphic of the game. Music and sounds are also a strong suit of the series. The mystic medieval music combined with an excellent narrator immerses the players into the world of Trine, making the series feel not just like video game, but also like a graphical novel.
All three Trine sequels are visually stunning!
Now please note, that I give my highest recommendation for the first two parts of the series, Trine and Trine 2. They both have interesting storylines, great controls and mechanics, and they both feature 2.5D environment. The third installment, Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power is not a game I would recommend. This part is the first to feature full 3D graphics, and although they are beautiful, the game is very watered down. Unlike the first two parts, this one features no upgrades and skill trees, the controls are very clunky and rage inducing, and story is cut very short as the development team ran out of money due to bad budgeting and “overlooking the fact that 3D games cost more”.
As such, I wholeheartedly suggest everyone to try out Trine and Trine 2, especially if you like puzzles and platformers and are looking for a great Coop experience you can enjoy with your loved ones. On the other hand, it pains me to say so, but Trine 3 is not worthy of your time as it completely ruined the series and caused it to go on an indefinite hold.
Trine: Enchanted Edition and Trine 2 currently hold Overwhelmingly Positive Ratings on Steam, while Trine 3: Artifacts of Power has Mixed reviews.
They are sold separately or as a bundle which is currently on sale and available on Steam for 42.72 USD.
Play the first two Trine parts, you won't be disappointed!
Edited by EchelonBrk