In this Professor Layton and The Miracle Mask review we talk about the fifth game of the Professor Layton Series. This game is set in a fairly new town called Monte d’Or, taking place a year after the events of the fourth game Professor Layton and the Last Specter. Players will play as the titular character, aided by his young sidekick Luke and apprentice Emmy, as they move through Monte d’Or trying to solve the mystery behind the Masked Gentleman, the mysterious being who turned the citizens into statues.
As true to tradition, Professor Layton is mostly a puzzle game. While investigating the characters, you will often be asked to solve a variety of mini-games, like matching pictures or counting, that tie into the storyline. If you get stumped on a puzzle, you can either use your hint coins or come back to it at another time. When you complete each puzzle, you will gain a certain amount of picarats. Should the player desire to replay a puzzle, they may access it via the Puzzle Index in the main menu.
However, in contrast to the previous games, the graphics have changed. In the previous games, the characters were mostly immobile, with only the mouths moving during dialogue. In this game, the graphics seem livelier like they are actually conversing with each other. In addition, the art style has change slightly, making the game feel more animesque. Nevertheless, the new graphics makes the game more entertaining as you watch the characters come to life before your very eyes on the 3DS.
The developers also changed the display of how the scenario is presented to the player. Normally, the description of the puzzle was displayed on the top screen. In this game, not only is the description on the lower part of the DS system, but you can also access it in a drop down format while trying to solve the puzzle.
If there is one main flaw of the game, it would be the new environmental interface system. When communicating with non-player characters or searching for hint coins, this feature allows you to search by gliding the stylus across the touch screen. A magnifying glass will change colors once it found something worth investigating. They can also zoom and rotate the scenery to examine the world in various angles. This might frustrate players who simply want to tape the stylus all over the place to find the hidden goodies.
In short, there is still plenty to enjoy and most of the new additions are accepting, allowing you to always come back and play again. Even if you master all the puzzles in this game, there are plenty of more games accessible in the DLC. So grab a friend, and unlock the mystery behind the Miracle Mask.
“I’m not a gamer… I’m a puzzle master”