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Topic: Professor Layton and the Curious Village (Plus the rest of the series)

Posts 1 to 19 of 19

VoidofLight

I know that there's tons of Professor Layton Forum threads, however I don't know if bringing them back to life is really that much of a good idea. Due to this, I went ahead and made a new thread for the series. If this isn't okay, then feel free to close it, and apologies in advance.

I just recently got to playing the original Layton game, and I can really see why people love it so much. So far it's pretty alright, but I love how hard the brain teasers make you think. It always takes me a long time to actually get the answers for them though, with me having to look up a guide for the hints.

Aside from that, the plot seems fairly interesting, but somewhat lackluster at the same time. I feel like that's only because this is the very first entry in the series, and it'll probably end up getting better in the other games when I eventually end up getting to them. The character designs are strange though, with a ton of the characters feeling pretty uncanny in comparison to the main two. The designs for the characters, combined with the feel of the village itself makes me feel as if something is off about the world of this game. That Layton and Luke stumbled upon some strange place that doesn't really quite fit in with the rest of reality. I guess it just feels that way due to how empty the world is, combined with the character designs and sound effects that you get from clicking around, or finding something.

I also don't quite trust that boat guy in front of the mansion..

Anyways, I can't wait to play more, and I'm already somehow 3 hours in, so it goes to show how addictive this game can truly be. I originally wanted to go with the mobile ports for the first three, but I decided to go with the DS versions, given that I heard they changed some of the puzzles in the mobile version, and that one of the puzzles in one of the mobile games ended up getting ruined because of it. If anyone else wants to talk about Layton, please feel free to do so here in this thread!

Edited on by VoidofLight

Currently Playing: Persona 3 Portable and Pokemon White 2!

faint

I only played the DS entries, but I loved them.

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Silly_G

I played all of the DS ones and I played a handful of hours of the first one on 3DS, so, obviously, I have yet to touch Azran Legacy or the Phoenix Wright crossover.

I did complete the the Katrielle game on Switch last year (or early this year) though after having skipped the 3DS version suspecting that a complete Switch port with the DLC on the cart would eventually come along. I thoroughly enjoyed the game, though many of the puzzles seemed a bit repetitive and hindered by the fact that the game was also designed for mobile devices.

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VoidofLight

@Silly_G I heard about the Katrielle game, but a ton of the reviews were saying how weird the puzzles felt to the others, and how they didn't really seem to relate all that much to the theme of the game. I'll probably end up trying it, once I'm finished with the rest of the series, however I feel like the mobile stuff will hinder my enjoyment. Hope I'm wrong about that though.

Currently Playing: Persona 3 Portable and Pokemon White 2!

Ralizah

One of the crown jewels of Nintendo's DS line. Aside from games 2 and 5, which arguably aren't as good as their predecessors, the series as a whole does a great job of gradually becoming better with every entry, until you get to Azran Legacy and it's this kind of dense epic that feels like Indiana Jones meets Ghibli.

That's impressive considering the original game is still quite decent, and has a fun mystery at the core of the story.

This is... of course, setting aside Layton's Mystery Adventure.

Edited on by Ralizah

Ralizah

kkslider5552000

Ralizah wrote:

Aside from games 2 and 5, which arguably aren't as good as their predecessors

2 is a worse game than 1 I guess but is leagues better in pacing and story.

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Cynas

I really enjoy the games, but I find I needed to take a break in between playing each one until I was in the mood for a puzzle game again. I love both virtual novel and puzzle games but I get burnt out if both quickly.

I try my best not to use the game's hint system, some of them take a little while to figure out but it's much more satisfying that way imo. The post-game sliding puzzles can be pretty brutal though. ​

So far I've beaten all 4 DS games, the Katrielle game, and the Phoenix Wright crossover. From those I'd say Unwound Future (or Lost Future for EU) is my favourite so far. I have both Miracle Mask and Azran Legacy sitting on the shelf, and I think I'm in the mood to play one again soon, so looking forward to trying Miracle Mask out.

As far as the character designs go I never really noticed anything out of the ordinary about them. They can be pretty wacky I guess but I think it fits the cartoony style. I thought it was especially fun in the Phoenix Wright crossover to see the huge contrast between the anime style Phoenix Wright characters and the cartoony style Professor Layton characters.

Cynas

Switch Friend Code: SW-5466-6715-6498

VoidofLight

@Cynas The one that was the most satisfying to me so far was the triangle puzzle with the coins, where you only had three movements you could make. It took me a while to figure it out, but I did it, and it somehow blew my mind. Another good puzzle that I really enjoyed was the one where you had to try to get the chicks and wolves across the stream.

And as for the character designs, they fit pretty well with the style of the game, but they just feel a bit weird to me in comparison to Layton and Luke. I guess part of the reason why it feels weird is just due to the nature of the first game being on the DS, so the sprites are somewhat stiff in comparison.

@Ralizah I trust the Mystery Adventure game isn't that great? I noticed it and the Layton brothers on the app store when I was browsing the mobile ports for the original three games, and they both just seem a bit different in comparison to what the original 6 seem to be. It's also a bit of a shame to hear that Diabolical box isn't as good as the original, given that it sounds like an interesting premise from what I read on the app store.

Currently Playing: Persona 3 Portable and Pokemon White 2!

Ralizah

@kkslider5552000 Pacing was fine in Curious Village. It fit the laid-back vibe of that game.

Also disagree on story. I really liked Curious Village's mystery, whereas Diabolical Box jumps the shark with at least one of its revelations. Also, Curious Village is the only game in the series to explain to satisfaction why everyone is so darn obsessed with puzzles.

DB isn't a bad game, but it's the kind of weird teenage phase between the minimalistic approach of Curious Village and the deeper writing and themes of Unwound Future.

@VoidofLight Well, as you've probably seen, there's some debate about the quality of the second game. It's not bad by any means, and you might very well disagree with me.

Mystery Adventure's puzzles are roundly inferior to the ones in the other games, primarily because the "puzzle master" who designed the puzzles for the first two trilogies died, forcing Level-5 to find someone else to design the game's puzzles.

Additionally, the narrative is episodic and simpler overall than Curious Village, and most of the new characters are irritating.

And, as it wasn't designed for consoles, the presentation isn't... great. Resolution aside, it's a pretty big step down from the 3DS entries.

Again, opinions, but you won't find a ton of Layton fans who'll disagree with that.

Edited on by Ralizah

Ralizah

Cynas

Yeah I think the majority of Professor Layton fans agree that Mystery Journey is the weakest. Personally I don't think it's even worth playing. As Ralizah mentioned the story is broken into episodes of solving pretty mundane problems. Neither the story or puzzles held my interest. A lot of the puzzles were poorly designed, there wasn't enough variety, and so many of them were just trick questions where the answer was 0 or something equivalent. It just got very predictable and boring.

Edited on by Cynas

Cynas

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Matt_Barber

I'll put a word in for Akira Tago, who was the driving force behind the games.

He was a legendary puzzle master and psychologist whose Head Gymnastics series had been very popular since the 1960s and was the inspiration for the developers to create something similar, eventually getting him on board as an overseer to the project. I don't think it's too much of a stretch to say that the character of Professor Layton is somewhat based upon him.

He was already in his 80s when the first game came out, so I guess that shows you're never too old to get into the business.

He died in 2016, a couple of years after the series had wrapped up for good, so nothing was left hanging. I suppose it does mean that further mainline Layton games are extremely unlikely, and if there are any they'll never be quite the same.

Matt_Barber

VoidofLight

Ah, It's a shame that he passed, but I guess it's good that they managed to wrap up the series itself. It makes me wonder though why Mystery Journey exists, if the main story is effectively all wrapped up, and they no longer have the genius who made the original 6 game's puzzles.

Currently Playing: Persona 3 Portable and Pokemon White 2!

Matt_Barber

@VoidofLight Mystery Journey is a different style of game based around Layton's daughter with a new cast and, obviously, a new puzzle designer.

I'd think it's Level 5's way of offering more of the same time while, at least for the foreseeable future, the Professor himself remains respectfully retired.

Matt_Barber

kkslider5552000

Ralizah wrote:

Pacing was fine in Curious Village. It fit the laid-back vibe of that game.

Also disagree on story. I really liked Curious Village's mystery, whereas Diabolical Box jumps the shark with at least one of its revelations. Also, Curious Village is the only game in the series to explain to satisfaction why everyone is so darn obsessed with puzzles.

I meant more the pacing in how like 90% of the puzzles are in the first 1/2 (1/3?) of the story, so its easy to do them all, assuming there will be more optional ones later and then there really aren't.

I can't justify this fully, as someone who has enjoyed many stories that go in easy to make fun of directions that seem dumb (maybe even are dumb) if said outloud. But the story, particularly certain twists, are stupid and dumb and I hate them. When I think of stupid plot twists, I think of the first Professor Layton.

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Tyranexx

I've played through the original trilogy and started working my way through the prequel trilogy (and watched Eternal Diva online) a few months ago. In fact, I'm a little over halfway through Miracle Mask on 3DS right now. I hope to download Azran Legacy before too long (Would love it physical, but it had a small print run here in NA) and want to eventually give the Layton Brothers: Mystery Room game a try. Same with Layton vs. Wright, but the problem is the latter has a large file size and is also expensive even used.

If I were to rank the games I've finished, I'd put them in this order:
(Note: All of these have excellent puzzles and decent music)
4. Last Specter/Spectre's Call - The big reveal for this one...didn't make a ton of sense. Sure, I can buy that Descole was tearing apart the town with his machines, but being fought by a prehistoric sea monster? Seriously?
3. Diabolical Box/Pandora's Box - While I liked the ending and setting for this one, some of the explanations were a little out of left field...though not as bad as the previous game.
2. Curious Village - A simple start, sure, but still a very good game. Also, as mentioned above, the puzzle obsession actually makes sense.
1. Unwound/Lost Future - No contest. Definitely the best story and ending in the series to date. This was the perfect ending to the original trilogy and is why it's one of my favorite DS games.

Edited on by Tyranexx

Currently playing: Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy, XC2: Torna - The Golden Country

Feel free to send me a Switch friend request, but please tell me first. Otherwise, I probably won't accept.

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Matt_Barber

Of the spinoffs, Layton vs Wright is far and away the best and well worth hunting down, at least once you're done with the two trilogies.

The one thing I'd hold against it, and only slightly, is that there's no attempt to meet in the middle. You just get alternating chapters of puzzling and courtroom drama so you've got to enjoy both styles of game to get through it.

Matt_Barber

VoidofLight

@Matt_Barber Luckily, I enjoy both Layton and Phoenix Wright, so that'd probably be up my alley.+

Currently Playing: Persona 3 Portable and Pokemon White 2!

VoidofLight

The longer I play this game, the more and more that these puzzles start to wrap around my head, and I start to understand the future ones I come across. It hurts when some of these puzzles are really simple, but worded to the point where it's hard to actually come up with the answer, so when you figure it out, you are surprised you didn't figure it out sooner... and then you come across a puzzle that seems really straight-forwards, and pretty easy, only for it to be more complex and difficult than you thought.

All I can say is that they're great, even if I have to look up a guide for hints on some of them.

Edited on by VoidofLight

Currently Playing: Persona 3 Portable and Pokemon White 2!

Tyranexx

I'd love to hunt down Layton vs. Wright, though I feel I should play an AA title first. Outside of lucking out at a resale shop though, I don't see it very likely. Physical copies were expensive even before the pandemic inflated everything, and digital requires more SD card space than I'm willing to invest in at this point. Fingers crossed it eventually comes to Switch, but I think it'll be harder to get Level-5's blessing over Capcom.

Currently playing: Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy, XC2: Torna - The Golden Country

Feel free to send me a Switch friend request, but please tell me first. Otherwise, I probably won't accept.

Switch Friend Code: SW-3478-2466-4791

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