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.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?