Friday, October 22, 2010

Professor Layton and The Unwound Future - Review

Written by Pokefreak

The most well known professor in London returns to the dual screens in his latest adventures. And future London isn't as bright and wirly as one would think. Can Layton save London? Is it even worth trying? Find out in our review.

Professor Layton and The Unwound Future is a direct sequel to The Diabolical Box of the same series. It takes place maybe a year or so after. The story follows Layton as he recieves a very strange letter. It's from his apprentice Luke. The Luke from ten years into the future. The future Luke claims London is in peril all from the future Professor Layton. And what's more is a time machine expert has vanished completely. There's surely a way these events are connected. But how?

The game follows the very same feature the previous two Layton games did. You walk from area to area doing people's math homework to solve their issues. Like the last two titles, it's much more fun than it seems. The game has an entirely new set of puzzles, over 160 in total, and many follow the same style as the last ones. Slide puzzles have made an unfortunate return. God I hate them so much. If you can ignore some of the more annoying puzzles like these, you can enjoy the game completely. If not, well, that's ok.

The music and art in the game are phenominal. As usual, we're treated to a very steampunk-oriented London as we follow the professor. Despite the rebellious clockwork art, the music is actually very classical. Many of the pieces are sounds you'd expect from an orchestra of Beethoven or Bach. It sounds great, even if you don't have a big interest in the genre. Steampunk + Classicalness = Win

There are many cutscenes in the game with full voice acting. As usual, Level-5 does a great job at presenting it. They're well drawn and all the voices seem very realistic. Future Luke even sounds like Luke. Everyone who is given a voice seems catchy and fun. The weird thing about the game is that the only character who actually speaks with an English accent is a bee who takes over Granny Riddleton's job. Oh, and Inspector Chelmey, of course.
"Damn, puberty hit me like a ton of bricks."

As for the negatives, there aren't really a lot. Some puzzles seem damn near impossible, while others seem to be way too easy. Now and then, there's a puzzle that seems just right and you feel smart after solving it on your first try. Sadly, these are few and far between. And many of the special features take forever to unlock. Many of them require an upward of four thousand picarats to unlock. That's over 140 puzzles of you take one wrong guess at all of them. This can actually prevent you from unlocking a few things in the game. Which kinda sucks, don't it.

Overall, the game is quite fun. It gives you a great chance to flex your brain and think in ways you might not have before. It can be very difficult at times, but some thought over an hour or two will clear it all up. I'm going to give Professor Layton and The Unwound Future...


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