Remember how great it was the first time you beat Super Mario bros.? Remember how fun and simple it was? Are you like me and wish for the world of side scrolling adventures and action platformers to have a new lease on life? If you are, then rejoice! FrozenByte has heard your prayers and brought to you, the faithful, Trine.
Trine is an action platformer that reclaims the glory days of side scrollers and now brings it to the Mac. A couple weeks ago FrozenByte took up Apple on the the idea of the Mac AppStore and released a Mac version of Trine for all of us MacHeads, so that we may too bow down before it’s splendor. Also recently released on the Mac version of Steam, Trine will hopefully be one of many games, in either store, that will give Mac gaming a shot in the arm, one it desperately needs.
Trine is simple enough to get the hang of, it’s like Mario but with a wizard, a brutish knight, and an assassin at your disposal. Each of the three characters give you, the user, different abilities for different tasks. The wizard can move objects, or create them, the knight is strong and carries a big sword that is perfect for smashing through the undead, while the assassin is equipped with a bow and a grappling hook. Each of these characters are useful in their own way, and each may be necessary at any given time, but the game can easily be played using your favorite character for most of the time.
During my past two weeks or so of testing out this amazing game, I have found the game to be very engaging and challenging, but in a good way. The best thing about the game is the fact that there is no one solution for most of the puzzles in your journey to find out the secret of the Trine, and to kill the source of the undead that now plagues the land. The story is given to us in bits, in an episodic sort of fashion and the three characters provide great commentary and comic relief when it is most appropriate. The game actually plays a little like a cross between Super Mario Bros. and Mega Man. When you find mini bosses, or final bosses, you will be trapped into a small area, much like Mega Man, and you will use your skills and talents to win the day.
As you progress through the game, you can collect Exp to level up your characters. Not much out of the ordinary there right? But wait! Here is something new; You can find jars of Exp laying around on the ground, if you look hard enough, and you can level up even faster. I swear, most games really need this idea. Leveling is more fun if it doesn’t always involve hack and slash for hours at a time. The amount of enemies to puzzles ratio in this game is just about right, I don’t feel as though I’m being beaten over the head with either of the two, and I don’t feel like I have to be overly skilled in either area in order to succeed.
The game mechanics, or controls if you will, are very nice. I won’t lie, at first I was a little concerned about a mouse and keypad combo for a side scroller, but once I got used to it, I really liked it. The learning curve, thankfully wasn’t steep at all. Each of the three characters gets a turn at being introduced in the beginning and as result each of them get a specific in game tutorial that makes things easy to follow. I don’t think any other way of doing it would have worked so well.
The graphics for Trine are very good, and look like I feel they should. The game runs smoothly on my MacBook without much delay at all, if any. The only one caveat is that the Mac AppStore version has been known to crash due to a bug, but FrozenByte has submitted s fix that should be in the AppStore any day now, if not already. Also, the price of $20 for this game is phenomenal. It’s a good price point and a good game for those of us who want a good casual game that won’t eat up our whole lives, but is interesting enough to make you want to skip class more than one day in a row.
In the end, this game is very good and should be the belle of the ball in the Mac AppStore’s collection of games. Some may disagree with me, but other good games there are not as polished, or as inexpensive as I have found Trine to be. And for those of you who still have your old USB playstation rip- off controllers for the computer, dust em off and give this game a trial run with your controller too. I have to say this game is a must for anyone born in the nintendo generation.
Game receives a 9 out of 10 possible points.