Status: 1 playthrough of Unwound Future complete
Total Time: 21hr 29min
Puzzles Solved: 164
Total Picarats: 5531
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When a mysterious letter arrives in the post claiming to be written by Hershel Layton’s apprentice, Luke, from 10 years in the future only a short period after the two witness a failed time traveling experiment, the two set off on another amazing adventure.
The third installment in the best-selling puzzle adventure series for the Nintendo DS, Professor Layton and the Unwound Future reveals more of the Professor’s past as well as his relationship with his energetic young apprentice. Events from years past and years future collide with Layton and Luke right in the thick of it, eager to uncover the hidden truths behind the letter. Layton and Luke are transported through time by means of a giant clock into what appears to be a much darker and grittier version of London, and must unravel the mysteries which appear to have close ties with the Professor. Where Curious Village and Diabolical Box took us on journeys that introduced us to our crime solving duo, it is here that we discover more about the events in Hershel’s life that have made him into the man he is today.
The streets of Future London are filled with new and familiar faces, all of them with a few puzzles up their sleeves just waiting for you to take on. Unwound Future boasts 165 puzzles on the game cartridge – by far the most of all the games in the series, and will see additional puzzles made available on a weekly basis as Nintendo has offered with the previous entries. There is a wonderful assortment of logic, math, and skill based puzzles to be tackled and defeated. The game also features three new mini-games: Toy Car, in which you must get your wind up car from Point A to Point B while avoiding obstacles and picking up special objects; making special deliveries by guiding your Parrot along a course; and collecting stickers for your story-driven Sticker Books.
Professor Layton games have always included assistance should a puzzle stump you. The first comes in the form of Hint Coins, wherein tapping certain spots on the DS screen such as a window or a rail post will give you shiny gold tokens you can trade in for a little bit of helpful advice. In the first two titles you could only spend up to 3 Hint Coins per puzzle. With Unwound Future, Level-5 has added one more hint level: the Super Hint. When three hints just aren’t enough, you can spend 2 coins and purchase the Super Hint, which practically gives you the answer you need to advance. And as always, if you miss any puzzles during the course of your investigations, they will be sent to a special location for you to access and cared for until you are able to devote some time to them.
Not only does Level-5 bring us amazing cut-scenes and incredible voice over work, but the amount of it seems to have nearly doubled with Unwound Future. I have always been amazed and astonished at just how much they’ve been able to fit onto the DS cartridge, as they always seem to be pushing the limitations of the format. The quality remains unchanged, with rich voice work and stunning graphics showcasing the heart and souls of the world without sacrificing game play to achieve its goal.
It’s no secret that Level-5’s Professor Layton series is a worldwide hit with gamers from all backgrounds. Their tried and true format is easily picked up and challenges the player to exercise brain muscles that we might have neglected spending too much time with our shooters and fighters. The wonderful storytelling, brilliant locations and challenging puzzles are what keep me going back time and time again, yet to be left disappointed when my time with it comes to an end. Once more, Nintendo and Level-5 have brought DS gamers an experience that will not soon be forgotten. No previous experience is required, although it is recommended in order to truly grasp some of the events and humour contained within.