Posts Tagged ‘frozenbyte’

Trine 3 Devs On Short Length & Cliffhanger Complaints: “There Is Nothing Left On The Table”

I often lament that game companies don’t tend to admit when they’ve ballsed something up – paralysed by fear that it’ll affect marketshare or boardmember confidence. Today, we get to see what it looks like when a successful but small developer puts their hands up, admits there’s a problem and explains why. Does it feel any better?

Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power [official site] is the game in question, and its shortness and unresolved story are the cause of the drama.

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Trine 3 Charges, Swings, Levitates Out Of Early Access

Early Access does mute the excitement of a new release for me. After the delights of Trine and its sequel, I should be bouncing off the wall with glee at the release of Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power [official site]. Instead, after four months on Steam Early Access, my response is a muttered “Oh hey! I guess I should buy that now.” Maybe I have become the sort of hype-driven monster I swore I’d never be.

Either way, hey! Trine 3 is now properly out to continue the adventures of a thief, wizard and knight for your puzzle-platforming pleasure.

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Premature Evaluation: Trine 3

While thinking of puns for the slug of this article, it occurred to me to wonder about the origins of “triumph”. It’s hard to see how its modern meaning might derive from - what I assumed to be - an association with the number three. This did not turn out to have a simple answer. Indeed, H. S. Versnel dedicates a considerable number of pages to the topic in his 411 page book “TRIUMPHUS: An Inquiry Into the Origin, Development and Meaning of the Roman Triumph”, and quotes heavily from scholars arguing about ancient Greek while talking in German and French.

Each week Marsh Davies swings gamely into the haunted temple of Early Access and brings back any stories he can find and/or tumbles indecorously onto a bed of wooden stakes. This week: third time’s the charm (maybe) for the triply protagonist’d physics-platforming sequel, Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power.

Frozenbyte have really tripled-down on the rule of three: three games, three protagonists and, now, three whole dimensions. Preceding games in the series have reserved the x-axis for set-dressing, sumptuously parallaxing behind the co-op-enabled chaos unfolding in a fixed plane, left-to-right. Now they’ve added depth, at least in a literal sense, and they want fan feedback on how well this works. To whit, a roughly hewn slab of game is now available on Early Access, reuniting the game’s three interchangeable but asymmetrically-talented heroes for a little over two hours. It’s unabashedly buggy and part-implemented – the proposition phrased as though it were a tentative proof of concept or a wild experiment. This is a reasonable use of Early Access, I think, although not an especially cheap one for eager beta-testers, and, given the quantity of the existing game and the predicted late-2015 launch date, it doesn’t look like an experiment from which Frozenbyte could now easily back away (along the y-axis, one assumes).

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Trine 3 Swings Onto Steam Early Access Next Week

Debuting Trine 3 [official site] through Steam Early Access is a curious decision from developers Frozenbyte. I warmly remember the first two as beautiful, polished treats that I played with a face like a small child seeing whatever it is that makes small children incoherent with glee (the faces of authority figures appearing and disappearing behind hands? sweeties? warm milk with a nip of whisky?). Then I didn’t return for a fair while. I wouldn’t want to sully that initial play.

However, if you are keen to chip in feedback before Frozenbyte call it done (test it, some might say), you’ll be able to do that next week. It’ll launch into Early Access on April 21st.

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A New Perspective: Trine 3 – The Artifacts Of Power

When I’m playing the Trine [official site] games I feel like I’m shuffling around inside beautiful fantasy concept art. It’s a little known fact that Louis Armstrong’s recording of What A Wonderful World was performed after an all-night cooperative Trine binge and the inspiration is clear (the final verse, however, was a joke about The Sims’ squalling infants). I’ve often wondered how it would feel to step inside the beautiful artwork rather than dashing across it from left to right, and the freshly announced Trine 3 has the answer. Indulge your eyes by watching the trailer below.

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Totally Wizard, Mate: Trine Enchanted Edition Released

Oooh! Aaah!

Each generation adds its own twist to old fairytales, reflecting the tone and fashions of the era, teasing out undertones as statements. Trine was not an adaptation of an old tale, but played with genre conventions to deliver a modern message: lusty wizards and thieves with grappling hooks are totally wicked cool. But what comes out when that itself is updated? Prettiness. So much prettiness.

Developers Frozenbyte yesterday launched Trine Enchanted Edition, a remake of sorts in the Trine 2 engine, adding online co-op and buckets of shininess. It’d been in public testing for a month.

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Magical: Trine Conjures Up Online Co-op In Engine Switch

The prettier Knight, Wizaaaaard, and Thief.

I remember Trine as being awfully pretty but no, apparently it wasn’t pretty enough for developers Frozenbyte (and, having now returned to the game, it seems my memory’s not quite what it was). They’re porting Trine over to the Trine 2 engine, giving the puzzle-platformer a fairytale makeover and its sequel’s online co-op.

While Frozenbyte may disappearing off on their summer hols soon and don’t know quite when it’ll be finished, they’ve released a beta version so we can all argue with Skypepals over who gets to be the Wizard. (Tip: start this argument then sigh “Fine, I’ll be the Thief” because actually she is the best. Thank the pro-wizard lobbying of Idle Thumbs, I guess.)

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FLEEE IN TERROR FROM THE HUGE SEAL (STEAM SALE)

Therrrrrrrrrre is so much a seal could tell you, so much he could bark. Yoouuuuuuuuuuuuuu remain, MY POWER MY PLEASURE MY *COUGH-LIKE BELCHING NOISE*

[Earth-shaking slapping sounds can be heard in the distance, like fresh lard being cannon-fired at an ancient war drum]

Do you hear that?

[A glass of water ripples ominously; a largely decorative Jello mold does the same, but fails to be particularly frightening]

Something’s coming. Something big.

[Dogs whine, horses stomp frantically, one or two people glance up from Western-shootout-caliber staredowns with Facebook on their phones]

It’s… it’s… SEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAL.

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The Colour Of Money: Trine 2 DLC And Sale

I remember a review of Zhang Yimou’s Hero which claimed that almost any frame from the film would be worthy of hanging in a gallery. Hyperbolic perhaps but it was a motion picture not afraid to include all of the the colours, frequently in astonishing arrangements. Similarly rich in palette, Trine 2 brings a beauty all its own to the fields and frozen wastes that are so well-trodden by hordes of wizards and warriors. It’s truly fantastic fantasy art and I’d happily watch a slideshow of both its spectacles and subtleties for hours. All that beauty can be yours for £2.99 this weekend on Steam, which is less than you’d spend on a postcard of a hill. The Goblin Menace DLC is also available now and at £5.09 actually costs more than the game at the moment.

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The Blood And The Beautiful – Trine 2: Goblin Menace

It's so beautiful that I want to lick it. Is that weird? I'm pretty sure it's not weird.

Truth be told, I’m not entirely sure how goblins – lumpy, stumpy little monstrosities – can exist in Trine 2‘s world. I mean, I have to imagine it’s like a snowman going for a stroll on the sun; we’re talking about two entirely opposing forces, and one has to give. So naturally, you’d assume ugly ol’ goblins would immediately explode into flame volcanoes when exposed to Trine’s blindness-curing beauty. And yet, they’re still alive and kicking – and menacing, no less. So, of course, it’s up to us to fix that little problem while accidentally walking off tall ledges because we’re distracted by all the pretty thi–

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Looking Fine: Trine 2 Expansion

A still of a desert with a better sense of scale than entire games set in deserts

Give it a name already, Frozenbyte, so I don’t have to refer to it as ‘expansion’ or ‘DLC’. I’m going for the former because it reminds me of the good old days, as do Frozenbyte themselves. Why am I posting about this gain so soon, having already written about the new areas, new plotline and new abilities? Because there’s a short video showing some environments and short videos showing Trine environments are among my favourite things in the world. Prettier than all the other game-pretties would be if they were baked up together in a pretty little pie, Trine 2 has the kind of world I’d gladly adventure in and then stick around to have a picnic.

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Trine And Trine Again: Trine 2 DLC

I may print this out and paste it to all my windows

Even before Trine 2 launched, Frozenbyte had plans to work on DLC, saying toward the end of last year that the additional content would be about four hours in length. A few details were revealed to some non-PC folk at GDC, including word of a new story that will take place over six stages, which will have puzzles based around light, water, low gravity and magnets. There will also be new skills. Expect the DLC in summer but don’t expect Trine 3 anytime soon, as Frozenbyte’s next title will be something altogether new. I haven’t played Trine 2 yet, despite the sense of contentment and joy that still washes over me whenever I see it in motion.

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GOG, NVIDIA, Frozenbyte, Notch vs SOPA

Expect plenty more of these kinds of updates leading up to next week’s web-wide SOPA protests: it’s an enormously important issue for the future of the internet and everyone who uses it, so we’re giving it our all.

Also declaring themselves strongly against the online culture-trashing folly today are Minecraft-makers Mojang, who intend to make a right old song and dance about SOPA next week, NVIDIA, Trine chaps Frozenbyte, Torchlight devs Runic and retromancers Good Old Games. Positions, statements and assorted protests below.
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