Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power (PC) Review

By Aria DiMezzo 09.10.2015

Review for Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power on PC

Trine continues to be an obscure series, although is certainly growing in popularity, and finally makes its transition into the third dimension, allowing some new ideas to hopefully breathe fresh air into it. It still looks and feels like a Trine game, which is surprising because there are so many examples of video game series just losing their minds when stepping into 3D, but Frozenbyte actually does it rather well. All in all, Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power really only has one serious problem, but it's grievous enough that the series' future is now in question. Is it really that big of a deal? Cubed3 takes a look.

With three characters to play as, Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power is filled with small secrets that can only be accessed by one particular character, which is good for making use of all three, but bad since they are not all enjoyable. Levels were designed clearly to take advantage of the heroes' skillsets, and often all three are required to complete a stage, and that works for the game; they're just not equally fun.

Trine 3 controls rather strangely, too, because of the transition to 3D and the odd camera angles that can often leave uncertainty of what key to press to move in a specific direction. This problem is worsened by the use of a controller, and it is borderline impossible to do a few necessary things with one. Moving blocks with Amadeus and a controller is an exercise in frustration, and can easily force a level to be restarted, since usage of a pad or a keyboard and mouse cannot be changed during a level. That's truly unfortunate, because Zoya controls better with a controller, while the others are better with a keyboard and mouse.

Screenshot for Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power on PC

Specifically, there is no real way to aim Zoya's attacks, and the sense of trying to aim a reticule in 3D space using a joystick never dissipates while playing as her. Aiming reticules in third person has never been an ideal solution, and Trine 3 uses a relatively smart auto-aim system that decreases the need for this, but doesn't quite manage to eliminate it entirely.

Although Trine 3 looks great, sounds great, and generally feels great, it never really gets going, because of a story that falls short. That statement is also meant literally, as the entire game can be beaten in only a handful of hours, and ends on what some are generously calling a cliff-hanger ending (but which is more accurately described as "not an ending"), practically informing players that there will be DLC released to finish the game. That tends to leave a bitter taste in the mouth.

The puzzles are not particularly taxing, and the inclusion of local co-op makes the experience pretty fun, because local co-op is always great. Online co-op also exists, but nothing else in gaming matches sitting beside someone and playing a video game with them. The experience is just a tad too easy, with none of the puzzles requiring the amount of thought that has to be put into Portal or Fez, but still better than the average "whack a crystal, door opens" "puzzles" in other, more popular adventure games. It also ends too soon—far too soon for the price point, and with an "ending" that rings hollow and rushed.

Screenshot for Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power on PC

Cubed3 Rating

5/10
Rated 5 out of 10

Average

Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power makes a surprisingly competent leap into the third dimension and brings with it a number of changes to the basic Trine formula, although many of these are simply extensions of having a new dimension to play in. Combat is a little bland, movement is rather clunky, and the camera can sometimes be uncooperative. A half-dozen hours is too few for the debut asking price, and most of the enjoyment comes from the multiplayer—until arguments start over who is going to play the bland and generic Pontius. The biggest problems are the brevity, lack of story, and overwhelming sensation it leaves that Frozenbyte released this unfinished and hopes to create DLC to finish it. That may or may not prove the case, but it remains difficult to like Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power when looking at the whole thing.

Developer

Frozenbyte

Publisher

Frozenbyte

Genre

Adventure

Players

3

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

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