Review by jimbob1192

"Good for puzzles, not much else going for it though"

I bought this game for my mother for her birthday... I'm still playing it now, in a sense. Though to be honest there's only one reason why I'm doing it, and that's what the game is primarily about: the puzzles.

What's good about it:
Well, most of the puzzles. Now that that's out of the way, I'll also compliment some of the cutscenes. In terms of the DS, they really are good quality.

What bugs me about it:
Okay, I'll cut to the chase here: there are few puzzles that I have played so far that are SO nit-picky. Sure, it's meant to make you think, and I can appreciate this, but seriously, there are limits. If you're gonna buy the game, look out for some of them!

Also, someone that really annoys the living daylights out of me is the fact that they're covering the vast array of puzzles in none other than a murder case. I bought the game with the idea that by solving these, you would get to advance with the mystery; this, ladies and gentlemen, is not the case. In fact, for those plot-loving people out there, this game is absolutely NOT for you. The puzzles that people come up with divert your attention from anything to do with it.

On top of that, I find the characters in this game SO unlikeable. The only tolerable character is Layton himself. Luke, however, is a pretentious youth who really has nothing special about him, or so it seems. But these are just the protagonists; what about everyone else that you will have to speak with during the game? Well, you've got: an ugly fat guy, an ugly thin guy, a guy with big lips...

...and despite the spectacular cutscenes (which I'm not gonna lie, are pretty good), whenever you talk to someone, it's just a picture of you and the other guy. Their mouths open and close, no obvious varieties of expression or anything. That gets kinda annoying.

Which brings me neatly on to me saying to not believe the great hype about this game. I'm the type of person who adores puzzles and murder mysteries. However, when you're rushed outside the manor where a guy's got kidnapped... and then stop to talk to someone who recalls an old puzzle that ol' Dave from the pub thought up (okay, I'm exaggerating here), that's just too much. Plus, I found that after a while, I couldn't give two hoots about who the kidnapper is, who took the golden apple, or anything else that is story related in this game.

Oh, and the music? I don't see what the fuss is about. It's the same music EVERY puzzle, and as far as I'm aware there's very little variety.

So, in conclusion, I wasn't very impressed by this game. The puzzles are often fun and thought-provoking, but they really don't fit in to the murder mystery or anything. I mean, seriously, if Professor Layton can be distracted over 100 times during the investigation, then something must seriously be up with that!

That said, it's better than other similar games out there, one that springs straight to mind is "Millionheir". So, in that sense, I have to give this game SOME kudos.

Plus, I suppose that seeing as this game is advertised to be a puzzle game, the main aspects you want to play with are indeed the puzzles. If you can cope with a lot of boring middle bits, then good for you. I'll still be playing this, only I'm not enticed by it. Definitely not addictive; for me it's one of those games that's in the DS, at which point I'll think "sure, why not" without any real enthusiasm.


Reviewer's Score: 5/10 | Originally Posted: 09/08/09

Game Release: Professor Layton and the Curious Village (EU, 11/07/08)


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