It's hard not to be hypnotized by a game like Trine 2. A title filled with much beauty and wonderment, this sequel to the moderately successful 2009 game from Atlus and Frozenbyte knows how to dazzle any gamer by its sheer looks alone. Once you get past the gorgeousness of Trine 2 you'll find yourself head-on with one of the most clever puzzle games released in years.

Trine 2 has you re-teaming your old friends from the first game: Zoya the thief, Pontius the knight, and Amadeus the wizard. They are called upon once again by the Trine, and are sent out on a quest to search for clues regarding the mysteries behind the black magic in the forest. Throughout the game players will have to solve puzzles in order to reach the next section of the game, while at the same time defeat any goblins and other mystical creatures that want to keep you from finding out too much about what's really happening in the forests.

Players can switch between characters at any time during gameplay, as each character has its own uses. Pontius is good with combat, along with breaking through rock walls. Zoya can reach bigger heights with her grapple rope, and can use her bow for long-ranged attacks. Amadeus -- the weakest of the three -- can use his magic to pick up heavy objects, as well as conjure up boxes and planks for helping get across long ranges. As the game progresses you will be able to unlock new abilities and weapon upgrades for each of your character such as hammer throw and fire arrows.

All these abilities come in handy when it comes to the puzzle aspect of the game, where the only way to solve them is to really think outside the box. Sometimes you will have to use just about every character's abilities in order to solve one of these puzzles. You'll find yourself turned upside-down when sometimes the answer to the hardest puzzle in the game can be right in front of your eyes. If you ever worry that a solution to a puzzle might need an upgrade you haven't unlocked yet, your fears will be put to rest; you can reset any upgrades and reorganize them however you want them to be.

Combating against goblin foes can be fun, not to mention open-ended. You can either take the easy route and have Pontius slay them all with his sword and hammer, or you can use Amadeus and fling the goblins into natural hazards with the grab option (once you unlock it). Having said that there isn't much variety when it comes to combat. However the boss battles can put you at the edge of your seat, especially when you come face-to-face with the final boss in Trine 2.

So much can be said about the graphics. It's one of those rare moments where you wish you can see a game like this on a giant movie screen and in 3D, as the beauty in Trine 2 is truly unmatched by any other downloadable title out there. Its worlds, characters, and plants are a real treat for the eyes, and look almost as good as the Navi planet in Avatar. Matching the world with its beauty is Ari Pulkkinen's score, which sounds like something you'd hear in any recent Peter Jackson movie. The voice acting could've used a bit of work, though, especially Zoya's. Its script, however, can be hilarious at times.

Trine 2 will probably take you about eleven hours to complete on your own, although it might be quicker if you play online co-op mode. The downside to beating the game is that there isn't any extra gaming modes to play in; a shame considering there could've been so much more you could do with a great title like this. (Maybe if a third one is made, they can try something like Create-A-Puzzle mode.)

PROS:

  • Fantastic puzzles and gameplay elements
  • Outstanding visuals and soundtrack
  • Online co-op mode is tons of fun

CONS:

  • Battling goblins lacks variety
  • No extra game modes
  • Voice acting is kinda on the meh side

FINAL THOUGHTS:

Trine 2 is one of the most fun puzzle adventure titles I've played in recent memory. A true thinking man's game, Trine 2 will have your brain work out every possible solution to each puzzle you come across. Trine 2 will leave gamers with a smile thanks to its strong gameplay elements, beautiful visuals, and a great story that will leave you wanting to come back for more.

FINAL GRADE: 9.2 (out of ten)

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