The titular trinity in Trinity Fusion from Angry Mob Games refers to both the three worlds and the three protagonists that you control throughout. The worlds being the underworld that’s full of life, the overworld where industry prevails and the hyperworld where science and art are king. These make up the multiverse that’s controlled by the Prime reality. It breaks the trinity aspect a little we admit, but eh.
The three characters you play as are Altara, Naira & Kera, the respective counterparts in each of the three worlds. Maya is the prime equivalent who acts as the overseer of sorts. At the outset you play just as Altara, the latter two not being available until you’ve reached their respective dimensions.
Somewhat clumsily described as a roguevania by the devs, Trinity Fusion is better described as an action platformer with rogue elements. Rather than the normal finding items and gaining access to the map in the typical metroidvania manner, your progress is gated somewhat by your abilities. You see, each of the three characters have slightly different abilities, one has a double jump, the other has a handy grapple.
When you play the early stages of the three runs, you’ll be limited by your basic ability set and your progress through levels might not be as fluid as you might hope. You’re set up to fail somewhat admittedly, though upon dying you’ll find yourself in a hub of sorts, penned the Citadel.
Populated by like-minded individuals, it’s here you’ll be able to gain persistent upgrades for use in combat. They’re the key to progressing further in the storyline. As you do so, you’ll encounter so-called lenses that allow you to use a fusion gate during your attempts. These allow you to use the abilities of two counterparts at the same time, though in our experience we went with the grapple option to gain that extra traversal where possible.
The multiverse conceit is better laid out here than that in the played for laughs What Lies In The Multiverse that we reviewed the other year, put it that way. In effect the more evolved humans penned as the Ewer are the big bad here, your merry band of rebels comprises one of their number who sees the bigger picture. The Ewer want to be the only game in town, the other universes be damned.
It’s down to you to defeat the bosses at each of the lenses and subsequently align the harmonisers. These are a nice macguffin that doesn’t do much more than advance the plot, we admit. But once you beat the final big bad within each of the three worlds you can concentrate your efforts on the others that remain. This is a little unfortunate as there’s little incentive to do otherwise. We got heartily sick of the Naira and Keira stages after we’d beaten Altara fairly early on.
As for the gameplay itself, we’re happy to report that it’s tight and responsive. The evade with is well implemented and supplemented by some excellent secondary abilities where opponents take damage on a successful evade. Your primary attack with serves as your main damage dealer, but it also recharges your energy meter that allows you to use your secondary weapon with . This makes for some fun combos, especially when you stagger an enemy with your main attack and take them out with a special. You can also unlock extra abilities like an uppercut or a Samus-like roll attack.
In addition, you’ve got consumable items for replenishing your health or deploying a temporary shield, to name two. There’s also bonus attacks you can use, like freeze all enemies or electrocution. Though it’s all too easy in the heat of a boss fight especially to forget to use the items and succumb. We kept on dying courtesy of some electric snake elite mob that had our number.
As you play through, you’ll also encounter amplifiers that give you boosts for that run only. They give enhancements like increased crit chance or extra health recovery from consumables. These are colour coded into categories and if you get three of the same you’ll get power-up, in effect a further buff. These are most welcome.
One thing that Trinity Fusion does especially well is allowing dynamic difficulty to aid those players less skilled or less inclined to battle through tough stages. We welcomed it as it allowed us to roll the final credits before finishing this review off. However, it also highlighted an issue that only came to light upon doing so. There’s a trophy for finishing a run with five power-ups equipped. We did so and rolled the credits. No trophy unlock. And once we returned to the Citadel, the NPC that lets you see your run history was nowhere to be seen. So no trophy and no way to even see our stats for the prior playthrough or any subsequent runs. Unfortunate.
We have to admit that we didn’t expect much from Trinity Fusion prior to playing it, given how many metroidvania/action platformers we’ve reviewed in this year alone. Thankfully this is one of the better ones we’ve played and the criticisms we have are foibles at worst. It’s not blindingly original but the central conceit sets up the game pretty well otherwise.
In conclusion, Trinity Fusion is a good effort. A little frustrating in terms of some mobs being that bit too tough to defeat and the fact that playing characters becomes moot once you’ve successfully nailed their run. The adaptable difficulty and combat are very satisfying though. If you die quickly on a run you’ll feel compelled to have another go as well. The issue we mentioned at the endgame was a wrinkle we could’ve done without if we’re honest, but to focus on that too much would do it a disservice. Hopefully there’s a fix forthcoming in a patch, but even if there isn’t, we had fun.
+ Nice dynamic difficulty level
+ Enhancements and powerups are well implemented
- Once you finish one character’s run they become largely redundant
- Slight issues with hub area in endgame phase