Release Date: September 25
Platforms available on: Xbox 360, PS3, Nintendo 3DS
Developer: Rovio, Housemarque, Exient
Angry Birds Trilogy for Xbox 360, PS3 and Nintendo 3DS is something of a surprise release from Rovio. While it's no shock that one of the world's biggest franchises has been ported to consoles, it's baffling that it wasn't done sooner. With brushed-up visuals, bonus content and new control schemes, can Angry Birds Trilogy enjoy the same success as its portable predecessors, or is Rovio's latest release likely to drive players mad?
Angry Birds Trilogy packs the original Angry Birds, Angry Birds Rio and Angry Birds Seasons onto one disc, complete with all of the additional levels added through countless updates. Though lacking recent release Angry Birds Space, the collection is absolutely brimming with content, offering potentially hundreds of hours of action, despite the bite-size nature of the challenges.
The 19 new and incredibly complex bonus levels, for example, are likely to provide a challenge to even the most experienced of players. The new stages can only be unlocked by ploughing through the existing batch, however, which is unfortunate for players craving something new having already maxed out the mobile versions. Bonus artwork and bird biographies have also been added, alongside leaderboards for each level, giving the game an extra competitive edge.
Visually, Angry Birds Trilogy is one of the sharpest, most colourful titles we've ever played, and what the environments lack in detail, they more than make up for in vibrancy. Trees sway, lights flicker and petals glide across stages, while structures crumble more extravagantly than ever before. The cutscenes have also been remastered, replacing the panoramic stills of old with animated shorts. While it's unlikely to win any graphical awards, the team has certainly made the best of what they had to work with.
Originally designed for touchscreen devices such as smartphones and tablets, a successful port requires an equally intuitive control scheme. Fortunately, with a regular game pad, Angry Birds Trilogy controls incredibly well. The analogue stick is used to aim, while a single button fires birds and unleashes their special techniques. Players can zoom in and out, pan across stages and retry levels with incredible ease, eliminating the need to pause to try again.
Angry Birds Trilogy also introduces Kinect controls, although the motion sensor has an adverse effect on the overall experience. Players use their left hand to select a bird and aim their shot, raising the right arm to fire and lowering it to utilise different abilities. The controls largely work as intended, although there are a few issues with the sensor cutting out and the odd incorrectly registered gesture, something which Kinect fans will no doubt be used to by now.
As it stands, users are spending upwards of £30 on a collection of games that can be picked up for under a fiver elsewhere. Without a strong Kinect mode, motivating the millions of Angry Birds fans to make the switch to consoles seems like a hard sell. The makers would have perhaps been better suited releasing each title as a digital download with a cheaper price point.
With controller in hand and one bird left in your arsenal, eliminating that final elusive pig as satisfying as ever. Combined with rich, colourful visuals and bucketload of content, Angry Birds Trilogy is an attractive prospect. Unfortunately, however, poorly implemented Kinect controls and a hefty price tag means that while Angry Birds Trilogy offers the same addictive gameplay experience, players are better suited sticking to the touchscreen originals.
Copyright: Activision Rovio Mobile