The Trine series is best known for its astounding visuals and challenging, physics-based puzzles. Thankfully, Trine 3 doesn’t change too much of the tried and tested formula, but it does add a new dimension to proceedings – literally.
Trine 3 places our magical trio of heroes on another adventure that requires the dexterity of Zoya the thief, the magical prowess of Amadeus the wizard and the strength of Pontius the knight. Each of the three have their own unique abilities within the game; Zoya can dispatch foes with her bow and arrow and grapple certain objects in order to traverse the environment. Pontius is probably the most rounded of characters and the one you’ll find yourself switching to the most. He’s an unstoppable force when it comes to combat and his gliding ability is pretty fun, too. Unfortunately, Amadeus hasnt’ really been given much else to work with and he’s still limited to being “the man who moves stuff”.
Previous games in the series allowed for some upgrading to be done with the characters, but this time around there’s no such thing. It’s not the worst thing, but it would have been better to have it than not have it.
Trine 3’s story isn’t its strongest point, but it’s perfectly serviceable and is told well enough through character dialogue and comic-style cut-scenes. Like I said, it’s not the strongest aspect of the game, but you don’t really play the Trine games for their tales: you play it for the tight gameplay and challenging puzzles.
With Trine 3 being taken into the realm of 3D, puzzles are a little more trickier. You’re still essentially moving from one side of the screen to the other, but you’re now able to move within a 3D environment. It’s a nice addition and one that really works well and brings the magical world to life in ways that wouldn’t have been possible with the old games. The first time I glided down a valley using Pontius’ shield was brilliant, thanks in no small part to the beautifully crafted world where the scenery hits you in the eye over, and over again. The Trine games have always had a pleasing art style and I’m happy to report that Trine 3 takes it even further.
Combat is also improved in Trine 3. For obvious reasons I spent most of my combat time with Pontius. Armed with his trusty sword and shield, Pontius is able to bring the beat down on any foe – providing they are within the reach of a sword swing.
Zoya’s bow and arrows now work in 360 degrees, so there’s a little more depth to picking off the bad guys and you’ll be forced to use her abilities when the enemy is out of Pontius’ reach.
Amadues isn’t worth mentioning to be honest, because despite being a powerful wizard, he can’t even pull a simple ‘Avada Kedavra’ when the screen starts piling with foes. Pitiful.
Despite the improvements that Trine 3 brings to the table, it’s not completely without fault. For starters, it’s a rather short campaign length. My first run through took my just over five and a half hours, but I hadn’t completed all the challenges. It’s not a bad length for the price of the game, but some will feel a little aggrieved when comparing it to the 10-ish hours offered in the previous games.
Play time can be extended by collecting “Trineangles” throughout the different stages; they’re actually a necessity as you need to collect set amounts to progress. To access further levels you’ll need to have a certain amount of Trineangles, so the game sort of gives you no choice but to replay previous sections. It increases the game’s length, but really, it just feels like a cheap way to fill it out.
The puzzles are, for the most part, well designed and require a bit of thought to solve, but the transition into 3D hasn’t helped and does cause a bit of frustration when it comes to moving things around the game world. On far too many occasions I found myself wondering what I was doing wrong. I also died a few too many times than I should have due to not being able to rightly tell where I’ll land on my next jump. Granted, some of this is on me, but with better implementation a lot of annoyance could have been spared.
Trine 3 is only on PC for the time being, but it does come with full controller support. However, it’s not the best and it feels sort of sticky when aiming. It also doesn’t help that when I needed to move a character with accuracy or face falling to an untimely demise, the controls just weren’t up to scratch. Luckily, most who play Trine 3 on PC will do so using the keyboard and mouse combo which is pretty tight and, after a bit of getting used to, works really well.
Disclaimer: This review was conducted using a review code provided by Frozenbyte.