Trine 2 is a puzzle platform video game, requiring the player to use the skills of the three characters, Amadeus the wizard, Zoya the thief, and Pontius the knight, to cross each game level. As with the first game, the mystical "Trine" has bound the three characters together into one common entity, and thus the player controls only one character which can be switched to the other two at any time. Each of the characters has unique abilities: Amadeus can use magic to grab onto certain objects in the game world, and create boxes and planks to be used to get around; Zoya can strike at objects with her arrows, and grapple onto certain surfaces; and Pontius is strong in combat against foes, can bash apart walls, and deflect projectiles with his shield. A combination of these elements are necessary to complete each stage in the game's world.
Characters have individual life meters, and if one character's meter depletes, that character cannot be used until the next checkpoint is reached. If all three characters lose their life meter, the player must start back at the last checkpoint. Throughout the game world are special magical vials, and for every fifty of these collected, the player receives a skill point, which can be used to gain abilities through a skill tree for each character.
Trine 2 supposed up to three players in a cooperative mode. In this mode, each player controls one of the three characters, but all must be unique; three players will be forced to play as Amadeus, Zoya, and Pontius. Two players can switch characters as long as both agree to the swap. If a character dies, the other players can revive the character at the next checkpoint. The skill tree is shared among all characters, based on the hosting player's saved game.