It's been a long time since I have played a platformer that has entertained me as much as Trine. In fact, I'll go ahead and say this up front: If you for some unfathomable reason do not fall completely head over heels in love with this game within the first ten minutes, there might be something wrong with your brain. I'd go get that checked out. For purposes of keeping the game as fresh as possible, I will try to avoid spitting out too many examples of how to solve puzzles.
I was surprised the first time I played Trine. Not by the lush, colorful graphics or the enchanting music, but by the superlative amount of charm it exudes. In addition to the fairytale aesthetic, a well-voiced (and written) narrator helps weave the tale of three unwilling companions: a lithe, acrobatic thief who comes with a grappling hook and bow, a lecherous wizard who has the ability to conjure objects at will, and a portly knight, whose bravery is only matched by his hunger. Each character is given a ton of personality, especially when they comment on the situation at hand or bicker over who gets to equip items found in the world. Combined with the narration, the game wins you over with its simple, but effective tale.
Our heroes managed to get themselves into a bit of a pickle, you see. They all managed to touch a magical artifact, conveniently called the Trine (ahh, and we have our title!), which bound their souls to one another, forcing them to traipse all over the world in search of a way to remove their curse. As is only natural, the world just so happens to be made up of a path of puzzles, both platforming and physics-based, and can be solved in numerous ways by creative manipulation of the characters. In the single-player mode, you are given the ability to switch between all three on the fly. Mixed in with the platforming segments are plenty of enemies, who unfortunately have a tendency to infinitely respawn using the Call of Duty model of clown car-based distribution. Hitting a checkpoint or advancing the screen a suitable distance will often end their barrage.
Sprinkled around the world are experience vials, often hidden in hard-to-reach places. For every fifty vials you pick up, your characters will gain a level and earn some skill points. Each character has three skills that each have three levels of power, and depending on your play style you'll be able to focus your characters' progression. Want to create nothing but bridges with the Wizard? Go right ahead. Do you think it would be awesome for the Knight to have a flaming sword? Spend some points! In addition to the experience vials, there are special treasure chests placed around the world, often in plain sight, but always slightly out of reach and filling you with a burning desire to open them. Inside are items that enhance your characters' abilities, often serving to reduce damage or give them creative ways to recharge their energy bar.