Damn Fine game.
I vaguely recall my fond memories of Lost Vikings on the SNES when i'm playing Trine. I 1st saw this game as a featured video on Gametrailers and then heard the boys over at gamerswithjobs raving about it on their podcast. After listening to that i decided i'd at least load up Steam and give the demo a try and was i impressed. First, the graphics are great looking and for a pc game that looks as pretty as this i was amazed at how well it ran. Not that i'm touting this as a PC game that will kick your video card in the balls but it strikes a great balance between art style and graphical impressiveness and does it without taxing your system too hardly. I've played it on 2 systems thus far with them on opposite ends of the spectrum video card wise. My laptop is a Core Duo at 1.8 Ghz 1.5 GB RAM and a Geforce 7400 was able to run this on low at 1024x768 and it still looked very pretty. On the other end, my desktop with an old Athlon 64 +3200 at 2.4 Ghz and 2 GB RAM and a Geforce 9500 was able to run this at 1280x720 at very high detail with minimal slowdown. I should mention that both graphics cards are overclocked slightly but won't bore you with that. The controls were tight overall, I preferred using my wired 360 controller to play it as it made the platforming much more precise but it supports custom mappings for the controller and mouse and keyboard. The game sounds great, things sound about the way you'd expect them to. Wood clunks when it hits the floor, metal clanks, character voices and sounds are entertaining and appropriate for the game. The music is an appropriate orchestral score that neither blends in to the background too much nor is so apparent that it becomes annoying and it all flows together like to make the game that much more awesome. The gameplay is great. The gimic here is that unlike lost vikings where you can only control 1 character and the other 2 just sit there like a couple of goons, you'll switch between your 3 characters on the fly becoming sort of a shape shifting, high fantasy, badass. Trust me, it works. You'll spend your time here, fighting bad guys, traversing platforming challenges, solving physics puzzles, collecting loot, and leveling up your dudes (and chick). Experience comes in the form of bottle drops found in hidden areas, and by killing bad guys so there's some incentive to trying to get to that ledge you briefly saw when you were falling/swinging/jumping. As i said before this game takes a lot of tricks from Lost Vikings so if you want an idea of what to expect you could check that out but i would recommend the demo on Steam if you're at all interested. I personally love the new onset of 2.5D games. They remind me of an entire generation of games that most of us grew up on and with the implementation of new technologies like realistic physics engines and modern 3d graphics, they are made all that much better. I loved Bionic Commando: Re-armed, love Trine, and can't wait for Shadow Complex this summer. Bottom line, I went from not knowing what this game was to dropping $20 for it on steam after playing the demo (i think it's $30 now, not sure how i got it for $20, go cry to valve if you want).