I’m really not much of a platformer guy but I’ve been an unapologetic fan of Trine since the debut of the original all the way back in 2009. (Time flies, eh?) And so it pleases me greatly that Frozenbyte has announced another addition to the series, Trine 5: A Clockwork Conspiracy, which is set to come out later this year.
One of the things I like most about the Trine games is how little they’ve changed over the years, so if you’re familiar with the series, you’ll know what to expect. If not, it’s pretty simple stuff: With the exception of the poorly-received Trine 3, which opted for a 3D perspective, the Trine games are 2.5D sidescrolling puzzle-platformers starring a wizard, a knight, and a thief, each with unique abilities and personalities, who embark upon various heroic adventures in a lush fairytale world. Generally speaking, they’re forgiving platformers—the challenge is in figuring out how to navigate levels by conjuring and levitating platforms and balls, climbing and swinging from rope arrows, and bouncing off of various rubbery surfaces.
It’s all very lighthearted and playful, and Trine 5 looks set to carry on in that tradition. It will feature 20 levels to explore, “from glistening gemstone caverns to perilous underwater passageways,” and support for both singleplayer and local or online co-op multiplayer for up to three people. But it promises some changes too, including puzzle difficulty that will change based on the number of players, a “skill quest system,” and “tactical multi-phase boss fights.”
I won’t sugarcoat it, that last point has me a little concerned. The boss fights are the weakest part of the Trine games, which have very minimal combat otherwise: They’re jarring and out of place, and ill-suited for characters designed first and foremost for horsing around in physics-based playgrounds. I do hope Frozenbyte doesn’t lean too heavily into them.
Despite that minor worry, my fingers are crossed and I’m very much looking forward to Trine 5. (And reminded that I should get around to finishing Trine 4.) A release date hasn’t been announced but Trine 5: A Clockwork Conspiracy is set to come out this summer and will be available on PC on Steam, GOG, and the Epic Games Store.