The Time of Our Lives
It Takes Two is a co-op-only title from the incredible team behind A Way Out and A Tale of Two Brothers; Hazelight. They’re the masters of co-op gaming experiences.
MrZhangetsu and I got the platinum trophy in a Way Out together a few years ago when it was released, and we really enjoyed it. It was a bit like a Naughty Dog-Esque story-driven game but with full co-op-focused gameplay.
Naturally, after having such a good time in A Way Out, we had It Takes Two pre-ordered, pre-downloaded, and ready to go on launch day!
It Takes Two Platinum Review
The Greatest Co-op Experience of All Time
Where do I even begin? We had pretty high hopes for this game in the first place, but holy cow, it really blew our expectations out of the water.
If I had to boil it down, the gameplay consists of platforming with some co-operative puzzle-solving, but it is so much more than that in truth. I’m serious. At one point, the game was a Diablo-style top-down Dungeon Crawler. It was also a Dance Dance Revolution game for a little while. There was a fighting game segment, a third-person shooter segment, a rollercoaster section; hell, we even drew a dot-to-dot puzzle together.
In each level, you would get new abilities, too. It started with May getting a hammer to attack and traverse with, while Cody controlled some nails Yondu-style. Together, we’d work to progress through the level, thinking these would be our abilities for the whole game.
We were wrong but in such a good way. Every time we got new abilities, they were mismatched, so we would be forced to rely on each other and work together, using our individually unique abilities to solve the problems we’d face.
The abilities we’d receive were incredibly unique in nature, making for some fascinating and varied puzzle segments. There were magnets, time control, teleportation, boots that let MrZhangetsu walk on walls, a belt that let me shrink and grow at will, and so much more.
There was a handful of optional minigames to find in every level, which also brought so many new genres and competitive gameplay options into the fray. From straight-up chess to intense one-on-one snowball fights, the possibilities felt endless. And even though I lost about 80% of the minigames we played, I still had so much fun with them all.
The touching and well-written story took us to some incredible environments too. I mean… I hate to just list things again, but there’s really so much in this game that it feels like I’m trying to review 20 different equally-amazing games all at once…
We fought a wasp colony in a war with an army of squirrels; we rode on manner-less frogs working as taxi drivers in the garden; we fought a giant plush space-baboon in outer space. We did unspeakable things to an elephant in a magical kingdom.
And, of course, for these master developers, it’s not enough that the gameplay and environments were varied, interesting, unique, and fun… They had to be mind-blowingly gorgeous too.
I have so many screenshots of the hundreds of exciting, fun, and downright hilarious experiences we had over this 12-hour non-stop session, but I can’t share everything. So, to wrap up this section before I talk about the trophy journey, I want to go over some highlights…
At one point, MrZhangetsu had to fight a Squirrel hand-to-hand on the back of a plane that I was controlling. I’d have to focus on keeping the platform level and avoid crashing while maneuvering through the beautifully-lit background.
In one level, we were freely exploring a recording studio with instruments such as guitars, drums, and keyboards that we could actually play by jumping on them. The best part of this was in a section where we’d have to use MIDI keyboards to compose a beat together and then play through the rest of the section with our own music as the backing track.
We enjoyed a lengthy and intense downhill ice-skating section during a level set inside a Snow Globe, complete with ramps and slopes to really let us pick up speed! The controls were buttery-smooth, and it just felt so good building up speed over the ramps and soaring across the ice.
In a very Toy Story-inspired section, we soared over a beautifully-rendered ball pit on fidget spinners!
I cannot stress this enough, I have not even begun to scratch the surface here. There’s so much more I want to tell you but I implore you to go and experience it for yourself.
The Platinum Journey
The Platinum journey can sometimes turn an incredible game into a chore. Often, games that are enjoyed world-over by thousands of gamers are looked at very differently by trophy hunters who have had to go to hell and back just to retrieve the Platinum that the majority of gamers wouldn’t care about.
This is not one of those cases.
This game’s trophy journey takes all the fun you’re already having and doubles it. All the trophy list asks of you is that you play every chapter, find every minigame, and perform a few secret interactions hidden in certain parts of the game. The craziest thing about that, though, is that there are so many interactive things to play with in the game which aren’t tied to the trophies or minigames.
It can be pretty tricky to find some of them. You won’t need to be Sherlock Holmes to find them all as they’re mostly just found on off-shoot paths and hidden throughout more open areas of the game, so as long as you’re at least a little vigilant (or have a fantastic It Takes Two Trophy Guide) you’ll be able to get the platinum in a single playthrough like we did.
If not, there’s absolutely nothing to worry about. The Chapter Select menu not only shows you which levels still have minigames to find, but it offers a large selection of checkpoints in each Chapter that you can go back to!
Some of the trophies aren’t unlocked in tandem and you and your partner will need to unlock them separately, but a good chunk of them do unlock simultaneously, which is nice! They’re usually the ones that require teamwork, too.
Through this trophy list, you’re encouraged to explore the game better and really appreciate all the little things that the developers made a concerted effort to include in the game, for no reason other than it being fun.
We got pretty lucky in that we found everything, all 25 minigames and 18 optional chapter-specific trophies, in one single run. There’s just one time we used Chapter Select and that’s because I saw a sign for a Spa in the garden section and then we accidentally progressed the game without visiting it.
We later saw the spa-related trophy in our lists and realised the mistake. Other than that, we were scrutinous in our exploration, which was really good considering I was writing a guide while we played. Props to MrZhangetsu for patiently sitting around whenever I stopped to write!
One intensely fun playthrough
It Takes Two Trophy Guide
I worked hard during our playthrough to put together this It Takes Two Trophy Guide which will chronologically take you to each and every minigame and optional trophy, so that you can play through the game confident in the knowledge that you won’t miss anything!
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