Professor Layton and Pandora's Box
Join Professor Layton on a murderous puzzle-filled mystery romp
- Stunning artwork, great puzzles, characters have genuine personality.
- An occasional silly moment in plot, there’s a long wait before Layton returns in another game.
Overall this is a great puzzle game with both an entertaining story and mind-bending puzzles.
Price$ 69.95 (AUD)
Remember the old puzzle books? The kind with page after page of mazes, tangrams and riddles that you’d buy to pass a long train ride or flight?
Professor Layton and Pandora’s Box is a video game version of that kind of book, wrapped in some gorgeous artwork and an intriguing murder mystery adventure plot.
Attempting to solve the mystery behind the death of a friend, Professor Layton is at his Sherlock Holmes best as he wades through puzzle after puzzle in the pursuit of the truth, through a variety of scenic locations including a country train, quaint villages and bustling cities.
With over 150 puzzles to solve (and extras downloadable from the Nintendo Wifi service), there is plenty to do, and the puzzles range from ridiculously easy to brain-meltingly challenging. There’s a couple of extra minigames thrown in for kicks, but the bulk of the game is solving a near endless-stream of brain teasers.
Although some of the puzzles are exceedingly difficult, the game itself is relaxing to play, as it’s possible to bypass most of the puzzles, and there’s no real penalty for getting a puzzle wrong.
Although you’ll lose some points from the in-game score each time you make a mistake, you’re quite welcome to keep trying until you get it right, and the only consequence for ending up with a low score is missing out on a few minor bonus features.
Navigating through the vibrant and colourful game is done in a very point-and-click adventure game fashion, and indeed, puzzles aside, Layton plays out very much like a traditional point-and-click games we remember fondly from our childhoods. See a character you want to speak to? Tap them with the stylus. Something on the screen suspicious? Tap it too.
Exploring the game is fun, too, because the various characters all have genuine personality and charm. For a murder mystery, the game is very light-hearted, and is filled with an abundance of humour, and it’s easy to fly through the game and lose track of time.
On the down side, the transition from the adventure game to the puzzles is occasionally awkward. A number of times I’d be travelling along, completely absorbed in following up clues, and I’d bump into a character that would say something trite like, “this tree reminds me of a puzzle.”
Bam! Puzzle attack. It’s quite a jarring effect, and especially disappointing considering how seamlessly other puzzles are built into the game.
But that’s a minor gripe. The variety of puzzles, the quality of the story, and the beautiful animation makes Professor Layton an absolute must-have, and a highlight for anyone looking for a game that’s a bit different.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Huawei Mate 9
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Acer Swift 7
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® Portable SSD
Dell XPS 13 laptop
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Surface Pro 4
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
- 5 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
Latest News Articles
- You can download Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes for iOS and Android today
- Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes looks sharp, but will it survive the freemium transition?
- Nintendo's bringing Super Mario Run to Android in March, but Fire Emblem's coming first
- The Switch is a mix of Nintendo's past consoles
- Dead Rising 4 impressions: 'Tis the season to BBQ zombies with your flaming sword
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCSQL Database AdministratorQLD
- CCBusiness Test Lead - BRT/UATNSW
- CCBusiness Project ManagerNSW
- FTFinancial ERP Customer SME / Solution Consultant / System AccountantNSW
- FT.Net DeveloperVIC
- TPMicrosoft Dynamics DeveloperNSW
- TPAnalyst Programmer (Adabas)SA
- FTJunior ITIL Service AnalystVIC
- FTDeveloper/ ProgrammerSA
- CCProject / Portfolio SchedulerNSW
- CCMarketing SpecialistNSW
- TPICT Contracts Compliance ManagerWA
- CCDevops Consultant - 12 month contractVIC
- FTFront-End DevOps Developer/Consultant - IT Services - SydneyNSW
- CCSME in Openstack, AWSNSW
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerNSW
- CCNetwork Specialist - IPAM TelcoVIC
- FTSales Account Manager | Cloud Solutions | Global Tech GiantNSW
- TPBusiness AnalystACT
- CCMultiple System Engineers - Data Centre - TelcoVIC
- TPProject OfficerNSW
- CCPMO ManagerNSW
- CCFinance Analyst/ Project SpecialistVIC
- TPICT Project CoordinatorQLD
- FTWintel EngineerSA