By: Jeff Cater
Trine 2 is a sequel to the popular action-platformer, Trine. Developer Frozenbyte bring us an amazing continuation of the story as we meet up with our three familiar heroes on their mysterious quest to save the Kingdom once more. Combining their unique skills and using your brain are key to victory; even more so in the included expansions The Goblin Menace and Dwarven Caverns.
Trine 2 works absolutely fantastic with the Dualshock 4. Each character has different actions they can perform, as mapped to the face buttons. Switching between them is easily done using the shoulder button, and activating each characters signature ability is as easy as pulling the right trigger and moving the right and left sticks. Overall, the controls are very tight with zero input-latency.
Unfortunately, the PS4 touchpad feature is a bit clumsy to use, likely being an imported feature from the Wii U version of the game. The problem lies with how small the Dualshock 4’s touch screen is in comparison to the Wii U’s gamepad; there simply isn’t enough surface area available to be able to finely tune actions as the developer intended. That being said, this in no way takes away from the game; any action bound to the touch screen is also bound to face buttons and triggers, so there’s an immediately effective alternative in place.
Damn, this is a good looking game! While Trine 2 has seen release on pretty much every console thus far, it’s safe to say that the PS4 version is the cream of the crop. In addition to its wildly magnificent color palette, the game runs at a brisk 60fps in full 1080p glory! Taking in the sheer beauty of this game in motion is quite the pleasure, and absolutely everything is animated smoothly and breathing vividly with life.
Trine 2 also does an amazing job at showing off the powerful lighting capabilities of the PS4; blue shades of moonlight softly soak the leaves and wash between the cobblestone footpaths, and fire causes everything to have a dancing shadowy doppelganger. I can’t stress enough how visually impressive the game is. Literally every scene just feels alive, interesting, and at times foreboding. Also available is support for 3D TVs, which I could only guess is flat out incredible.
Greatly matching up with the visual prowess of the title, the sound department kicked it into high gear and delivered absolutely smashing vocal work for all characters and the narrator, while the rich score accompanies you throughout the incredible journey. The soundtrack always matches the environment perfectly, which creates a great sense of immersion in this already amazingly constructed title.
The wide gamut of gameplay variety is just as immense as the game’s color palette. At all times you’ll be using your head; whether you’re using Pontius‘ shield to guide water to a seedling, magically placing Amadeus‘ steampunk-esque planks and boxes to traverse gaps, or firing Zoya‘s Frost Arrows into the water to form a makeshift raft, each puzzle and task you’re confronted with has multiple ways around it.
This makes for a free and creative gaming experience, as well as an easily repeatable one since you can stat characters differently throughout the entire game. Since this is Trine 2: The Complete Story, additional content originally separate on other systems comes included in this edition. In addition to the game’s original 13 levels, the Goblin Menace adds six more levels, which also lead up to yet another secret level called the Dwarven Caverns, giving Trine 2: The Complete Story a running time of anywhere between 15 and 30 hours!
Throughout the stages, checkpoints are liberally placed, so if you end up getting a character killed by a spike pit or fireball, just a few seconds of running to the left with replenish your hero supply. If you happen to become stuck in an area a character will verbally spout a helpful hint that is good enough that it doesn’t give away exactly how to complete the given puzzle, but it still sets you on the right track and lets you work the rest out. Never does the game hold your hand. It just simply nudges you toward the correct course of action.
Combining minds with that of one or two of your friends is not only welcome but a great experience as well, whether playing locally or online (as long as players are microphone’d up and working cohesively). Players can drop in or out at any time, so if a friend of yours is stuck at one part, no sweat. Just hop on for a few minutes and jump back out when finished.
It’s not console exclusive, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a better digital title on any system. If you’re lucky enough to own a PS4 right now, Trine 2: The Complete Story should definitely find a home on your hard drive.