E3 First Impressions: Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince

I got a chance to get my hands on Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince during E3 and I’m happy to say it was a pleasure seeing Amadeus the Wizard, Pontius the Knight, and Zoya the Thief again.

Trine 3 was my first experience with the series and, compared to other split-screen cooperative games, I felt that the range of mechanics for each character and physics-based puzzles left me with a genuinely unique multiplayer experience that I enjoyed.

I didn’t realize that Trine 3 was a departure from the series due to the move towards a 3D world nor that it had a less than stellar reception, but it was made clear that Trine 4 is a deliberate return to the game’s 2.5D roots. Frozenbyte worked to finetune and improve upon the great combat mechanics and physics-based puzzles while also immersing us in the trials and tribulations of our three heroes as they adventure through a gorgeous world.

According to developers, there will be a return to more robust skill trees seen in the first two titles.

“The Trine series begins with Amadeus the Wizard, Pontius the Knight, and Zoya the Thief on a journey across a forsaken and ruined kingdom. Bound to a mysterious artifact called Trine, the three unlikely heroes use their unique skills to battle the undead, navigate treacherous environments, and solve challenging physics-based puzzles across a collection of perilous quests in this best-selling adventure series. Through the first three titles, the protagonists will come to discover, understand, and seek to control the powers bestowed upon them by Trine.

Serving as a capstone to the original trilogy, Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince is the newest entry to the franchise that elevates it to new heights. The three heroes are joined together once again as they search for Prince Selius, a troubled young noble who is afflicted with intensely dark dreams. Due to his magical talents, monstrous nightmares have materialized in reality to wreak havoc and it’s up to the heroic trio to resolve the situation before the world is consumed by the Nightmare Prince’s shadows. Featuring a return to the beloved 2.5D style, new ways to play, and the most content in a Trine title to date, Trine 4 is the sequel that epitomizes the best of the franchise.”

The game can be enjoyed both single- and multiplayer, with changes to the puzzles depending on what mode you play through in. Trine 4 features up to 4-player drop-in/out online and local cooperative play.

In my time with the game, I played through Pontius’ tutorial to get a feel for some of this newer mechanics, such as using his shield to deflect various elements such as light or water to manipulate the battlefield or take advantage of an enemy’s weakness.

Also shown in additional gameplay by a developer was a range of newer mechanics such as a ghost shield for Pontius that can be summoned similarly to Amadeus’ shapes and left for a period of time to assist in battlefield manipulations or deflect enemy attacks. Zoya’s Fairy Rope can be used to create new precarious pathways, especially combined with the range of conjurations Amadeus has up his sleeve.

Overall, I’m excited to add another great multiplayer title to my collection later this year.

Trine 4: The Nightmare Prince is launching on PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One later this fall for $29.99.

At the same time, the Trine: Ultimate Collection will be available for $49.99, featuring all four games in the series.

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Writer and Managing Editor at Cinelinx. Producer and host of KakeBytes. Part-time gremlin and lo-fi human merely existing.