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Indie Corner: Trine 3: The Artifacts Of Power

Writer’s note: I have never played a Trine game before so I can’t compare this game to its predesesors. So with that said let’s get into this.

Developer Frozenbtye has dipped its toes into the 3D platformer genre by bringing the third installment of Trine into the third dimension with a fair amount of success. It was a rocky road and while the game has a few short-comings, it’s an experience 3d platform-fans will be sure to appreciate.  Even if the journey is short and ends very abruptly.

Trine is still on our side.

The story of Trine 3 is rather barebones. It’s an adventure and that’s about all that’s of importance. That isn’t to say that there isn’t any story at all tough. When the Artifact of Power named Trine comes to collect the three heroes of the previous game from retirement to stop a threat, the three heroes decide that they’re done and want to return their powers to the artifact. In trying to do so they accidentally release an evil spirit from the artifact shattering the object into pieces. Of course the trio sets out to find the pieces of the artifact and stop the evil wizard from doing any more damage. There are about ten chapters  in the game, with all of them telling a bit of the story. The story is told by an unknown narrator and the heroes always have something to say. The voice-acting is nice and the dialogue is lighthearted and funny. The story is just here as a means to tie levels together and an excuse for a new adventure. If there is one complaint about the plot it’s that it ends abruptly and on a cliffhanger that would make Halo 2 blush. The story serves its purpose and doesn’t stop the focus; being the gameplay even if it ends on a serious low note.

trine 3While Trine 3′ story is nothing special it doesn’t excuse its bad cliffhanger ending.

 

Little knight, it’s time you learned that honour and courage are mere words… But my powers are real.

For the first two game Trine was a 2d puzzle platformer. This time around Trine gets extra dimension added to its repertoire. While Trine 3 goes into the third dimension it still look and feel like Trine and it’s strangely still manages to feel like a 2D platformer. In Trine 3 you play as three different characters. Zoya: A thief armed with a bow and grappling hook which allows her to swing across certain gaps and tie boxes, doors and other objects together. When in some open 3D environments swinging feels like something out of Spiderman or Bionic Commando and is incredibly fun. Second is Pontius the knight. He has the ability to use his shield for blocking attacks and floating from platform to platform much like Rayman’s helicopter hair or Clank’s helicopter arms. He is also the one most capable of combat and has a ground pound. And lastly is Amadeus who is a wizard that can only conjure up boxes. He can use these as weight or a platform, and while he isn’t the best fighter he can destroy enemies by dropping boxes on them. These three must platform their way trough every level and collect as much Trineangles as they can to proceed. The platforming feels good and fairly responsive. You can either play alone switching between different characters or tackle the game with two other companions. The puzzle parts of Trine 3 is fun and aren’t enough to block the player from progressing but are challenging enough to make you take a good look at what might be the answer. The flow of the game feels almost perfect and it’s incredible how Frozenbyte managed to make it flow so nice. And while the platforming is great it’s not all amazing.

The combat is horrible with it just boiling down to mashing the attack button and sometimes blocking in a general direction. It’s not fun and shouldn’t have been such a big part of the game. But what is the worst part of the game is not necessarily that it’s short it’s that it’s filled with bad progression blockers. Throughout the levels players collect golden triangles called Trineangles. While these should be meant to be nothing more than Rayman 2’s Lums or a Jak And Daxter’s Precursor Orbs a large majority is necessary to unlock other levels. This means at some point players will have to go back to a specific level load a chapter to collect three Trineangles, stop one minute in and go to another level to collect ten more and so forth until you have enough. It’s an extremely slow grind and isn’t fun to do. In between the main chapters are character specific levels wich are shorter and are mostly fun. However here is where the combat complaint returns. Quite a bit of levels are combat oriented and considering the state of the combat it’s best left to say that these levels are horrible. However the level that focus on the characters abilities to solve puzzles are really fun.  Trine 3’s physics based levels are fun and so are the puzzles but the awful combat and padding while eventually take some of the fun out of what would otherwise be a blissful experience.

trine 3 3The physics based puzzles are great and the platforming solid.

 

A thousand heroes in a thousand years havent been able to find it.

Another thing Trine excels at is the absolutely gorgeous visuals, both on a graphical and aesthetic standpoint. Levels are absolutely gorgeous with colors being vibrant and having a nice bright glow. A lot of the levels will actively force the players to stop and be in awe by the sheer force of its gorgeous visuals. The music is okay, fitting with the themes of the levels and the theme Trine is going for. Just about any place you will visit is enough to be a wallpaper. Trine 3’s visuals are amazing and are an absolute delight to look at.

trine 3 2Drop dead gorgeous doesn’t even begin to describe it.

 

 

trine 3 verdict
The good: The bad:
+Good puzzles -Needless and bad padding
+Fun platforming -Bad combat
+Amazing visuals -Cliffhanger ending

Trine 3 is a great 3D platform experience that is fun while it lasts. The Cliffhanger ending is something that would embarrass Halo 2 and cuts the fun adventure short too soon. And while the game would be short the needless padding with awful combat only levels really hurts the experience in a whole. Trine 3 is great but the few complaints bring down the game more than it would have been if the game was just short.

3,5 out of 5:

3.5ster

 

I'm a fun loving guy who like piña coladas, getting caught in the rain and long walks on the beach. I work hard, I play hard. Must like cats. Ugos need not apply. If you want to ask me anything you can contact me at yordi.verhoene@gmail.com