Level-5 Professor Layton and the Curious Village

Level-5 Professor Layton and the Curious Village
  • Level-5 Professor Layton and the Curious Village
  • Level-5 Professor Layton and the Curious Village
  • Level-5 Professor Layton and the Curious Village
  • Expert Rating

    3.75 / 5

Pros

  • Excellent narrative, extra games are fun to play

Cons

  • Some puzzles are ridiculously hard to solve, not very child friendly

Bottom Line

The overall vibe of the game is charming and immensely likeable and the basic game mechanic is solid. Even if the uneven difficulty robs the game of some of its fun and the slow, methodical pacing might lull some gamers to sleep, for puzzle lovers and brainy gamers, Professor Layton definitely has a lot to offer.

Would you buy this?

Put on your thinking caps and get ready to strain your brain: Professor Layton and the Curious Village is one perplexing puzzler!

When a wealthy man dies and leaves behind a will that points to a hidden treasure, Professor Layton and his trusty apprentice Luke are called to the village of St. Mystere to help crack the case. But they quickly learn that the town is full of other secrets just waiting to be discovered.

Mysterious Mysteries

The narrative powering Professor Layton is definitely one of the game's strong points. The art style is eye-catching and brings to mind the classic animated film 'The Triplets of Bellville'; it definitely serves as a nice platform on which the game's many mysteries are built. Besides the main mystery of the hidden treasure, there are all sorts of other secrets to unearth in the town of St. Mystere. What sort of creature is haunting the clock tower? Is there a murderer on the loose? And how do these mysteries relate to the dead man's treasure?

In order to get to the bottom of these confounding conundrums, you have to solve a variety of logic puzzles. Most are presented to you by the town's interesting cast of characters but others are hidden around the levels; you can find them by tapping around the various levels with your stylus. Doing so also unearths clue coins which let you buy hints that can give you a leg up on difficult puzzles, and you'll need every single one because some of the puzzles in Professor Layton are ridiculously difficult.

Brain Tease

And really, that's the game's biggest fault: some puzzles are fairly easy and can be solved in a matter of seconds but there are some puzzles that will confound you for long stretches; worse yet, they're sometimes so tedious that it almost felt like we were doing homework. Take the clock puzzle, for example: you have to count the number of instances that the same three digits will appear in a row; 10 o'clock, with its three concurrent zeros, would count as two (once in the morning and once in the evening). It sounds straightforward but we had put the game down, got out a pad of paper and did some calculations. By the time we solved the puzzle, we were more relieved than satisfied.

Compounding the problem is the fact that you are required to solve a specific number of puzzles in order to progress the plot at certain points, which is a frustrating roadblock. Also, considering the art style, it's easy to assume that the game will be kid-friendly, but really, it's not: unless the child in question is a genuine prodigy, they will probably struggle. Then again, we have been outwitted by kids in the past, so maybe we're wrong on that count.

Dial 'S' For Solution

For all its frustrations, Professor Layton does have its merits. The overall vibe of the game is charming and immensely likeable and the basic game mechanic is solid. There is also a ton of things to do: aside from the puzzles, there are other neat extras that we'll let you discover on your own. Even if the uneven difficulty robs the game of some of its fun and the slow, methodical pacing might lull some gamers to sleep, for puzzle lovers and brainy gamers, Professor Layton definitely has a lot to offer. We really hope the game makes the transition to the Wii someday as well; as nice as the DS version is, it would be great to play on a big screen, solving puzzles with friends.

Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?