Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box Review
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On 09/20/2009 at 11:40 PM by Lauren Lewandoski
Layton and his apprentice strike again.
For fans of brain teasers and enthralling worlds.
When playing the first installment of the Professor Layton series, I was intrigued by the twists and turns of the storyline, characters, and even the puzzles. Its recently released sequel, Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box, had me wondering what intriguing story line they could possibly come up with. At every turn of the plot, I found myself remembering the first game and expecting those surprises to come through, but they didn't. In fact, even more interesting story lines emerged, retaining some much loved characters but adding in some others, such as Sammy. Long story short, Diabolical Box is everything Curious Village was and more.
As if the story wasn't enough, the puzzles are much improved. I felt slightly less challenged this time around (maybe I'm just smarter now), but I felt there were more puzzles to find in a much more organic manner. Puzzles are still worth an amount of Picarats that serve little purpose beyond alerting you of the puzzle's difficulty and giving you a high score mechanic.
There are some new mini-games as well, with the most in-depth one being the camera. For the first half of the story, you collect pieces of a camera and then assemble it. Then, later in the game you take photos of certain areas and engage in challenging spot-three-differences puzzles. The two other mini-games involve making tea and helping a fat hamster exercise.
The graphics remain phenomenal, with beautiful scenes that retain a classical cartoon appeal. The colorings of the towns, especially Folsense, draw you to the game and into Layton's world. Occasional animated and voiced cut scenes also add to the appeal of this game. The soundtrack is very calming and can sometimes keep you collected during tough puzzles.
The combination of a point-and-click adventure, a puzzle game, and a murder mystery make Diabolical Box a must-have game for all DS players who love a challenge along with a good story.