First thoughts when I saw the Trine 2 Wii U trailer: you don't get enough platformers with goblins these days. In fact, the last one I remember playing was Twinworld which, as Wikipedia has just reminded me, was a late 80s Ubisoft platformer starring enemies called Bothria, Goulou and Green Golou. The names say it all.
Of course, many Nintendo fans will have fond (or bad, depending on whether you could handle the difficulty level) memories of Ghosts N Goblins but modern platformers in which sorcerers, knights and thieves take out mythical creatures are in short supply these days. You'll have to play RPGs or adventures for your goblin kicks these days. Or wait for LEGO Lord Of The Rings.
Maybe it's because more people would rather play as a cartoon plumber than a wizard. It would certainly seem that way because when I reached the Trine 2 demo booth at Nintendo's recent Wii U showcase in London, I was told that only seven people had played it that day. Indeed, I was playing it because there was a queue for Rayman Legends. It would be a shame if it was ignored because Trine 2 is one of the best-looking games on the console.
Of course, Trine isn't a new game - the original was released for PC in 2009 while the follow-up came to Xbox 360 and PC in December last year. The terrible name refers to an ancient artefact which has the power to bind souls; Zoya the thief, Amadeus the wizard and Pontius the knight touched the Trine at the beginning of the first game and then had to fight and solve puzzles to free themselves of its powers.
Now the Trine has summoned Zoya, Amadeus and Pontius again and the trio are attacked by goblins. Crown Princess Rosabel needs the heroes to free the kingdom of all evil and that means using the individual skills of the thief, wizard and knight.
It looks wonderful on the Wii U GamePad with the incredibly detailed levels sparkling on the super sharp touchscreen. Viewing through the secondary screen, it's like the best looking handheld game we've ever seen. Which is, pretty much, what it is.
You switch between characters on the touchscreen and, when playing as the sorcerer, you can draw platforms and boxes on the GamePad. With the action taking place both on the touchscreen and the telly, there really is no need to look up and you might not even have time to when the beasts attack.
The best thing about platform drawing is that it really matters where you place your planks. This isn't Yoshi Touch And Go - as your platforms don't float in mid-air. Instead, you'll need to draw a platform with your finger or stylus (it's easier with your finger), and ensure it lands on a box or a piece of scenery as if it's not resting on anything, it will disappear in seconds.
Playing as the thief, you fire arrows by prodding the screen and while the knight's attacks are controlled with the buttons, you can angle his shield on the screen.
This isn't all about individual skill, though, as you will need to work together to make it through the levels as shown when the thief brings down a box with her arrows, revealing a beam of light which needs to be deflected with the knight's shield to get through a door. Trine 2 promises to be great in multiplayer, too, with one player as the wizard drawing platforms for the others. Throw in all the extras that this Director's Cut brings - including the Magic Mayhem party mode that brings the frantic multiplayer of Trine 2 into a more challenging environment - and you've got what the developer is promising is the best version of the game.
Nintendo fans may be drawn to New Super Mario Bros U but they shouldn't ignore Trine 2.