Video Game Review: Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy

This past Friday I woke up with a bad cold. So, instead of working and then going out for a night on the town (read: a trip to the bookstore), I was laid up in bed all day sick.

That night, Dear Husband got a call from his brother about a poker game. He felt bad leaving me at home sick by myself on a Friday night, but I insisted he go have fun. (Spoler alert: he won the tournament!)

I was feeling poorly all evening, so I curled up on the couch with a cup of herbal tea and decided to fire up the Nintendo 3DS. Most of my gaming is on my Xbox One, but occasionally I’ll be in the mood for some handheld gaming. Friday was one of those nights.

I decided to play Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy. If you’re not familiar, the Professor Layton games are a series of puzzle games from Japanese video game developer Level-5. The franchise holds a special place in my heart, as I spent many a stressed out night during graduate school playing these games to unwind.

Released in North America in February 2014, Azran Legacy tells the tale of Professor Layton on the hunt to solve the mystery of an apparent living mummy, who has mysterious ties to an evil organization called Targent.

Gameplay is standard for Layton games: You use the stylus to dictate which direction Layton walks, and at each location, you will encounter a cast of characters who will help progress the story by offering you puzzles to solve.

The puzzles are a decent mix of geometric puzzles, word puzzles, and math puzzles. My favorite puzzles are always the ones that are variants on the classic river crossing puzzle.

I was pleased when, at the end of Chapter 1, there was a bit more of an adventure game feel to the game. In the interactive cutscene shown below, you are flying in an airship with the Professor, chasing the bad guys in their own airship. You must fire missiles based on quick little puzzles that are thrown at you in rapid succession. It may have been a little too easy, but I enjoyed the diversion.

There are two things that always draw me into Professor Layton games: mainly, the puzzles. But secondly, the charming characters and bizarre plots. Are they even remotely realistic? No. Are there plot holes? Eh, probably. Are the characters terribly fleshed out? No way.

But still, there is something about the whimsical soundtrack and endearing characters that brings me back time and again.

All in all, I give this game five stars!

Have you played Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy? If so, what did you think?

Until next time,

xoxo Charlotte

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10 comments

  1. Nice review! I have wanted to try out Professor Layton for awhile. I have the first game but haven’t started it yet because I’m also trying out Phoenix Wright for the first time. But it’s definitely on my to-play list!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Robert Ian! I am really glad you liked it! Based on the game reviews of yours that I’ve read, I think you will like Professor Layton a lot. I do recommend playing them in the order in which they’ve been published, but if you can’t do that, don’t worry at all.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. My ex girlfriend from way back used to play these games and I was always drawn in to playing with her. They’re a great little time killer and some of the puzzles can get the cogs a-turnin’. I actually had a yearning to play sudoku earlier this week and found a website I could play it. Spent hours at it. I used to play sudoku all the time even further back than when I was with the aforementioned ex. It’s good to get the brain in gear sometimes

    Liked by 2 people

    • A great time killer is the perfect way to describe Professor Layton games. There is no ramping up period of lengthy tutorials, and you can leave the game for ages and pick right back up where you left off. Ooh, and sudoku is addicting! I used to love that. Now, my book puzzles of choice are New York Times crossword puzzles.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Weirdly, despite my affection for all things literary, I prefer numerical puzzles. Not that I don’t like crosswords too. And arrowords. Essentially the same, but invariably less “grown-up”.
        I do like games you can leave for ages. I find GTA V is a lot like that. I’m hammering online at the moment, but went months without touching it. It’s somewhat less mentally challenging than Professor Layton though. Haha

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Never played it, but then I haven’t played video games in a very long time – and never was much for them personally. Speaking of puzzles etc though, I used to do those Brain teaser books on occasion and was good at them. I fear my brain would be rusty now though lol… suppose I should give it a try – I think hubby still has some from years ago he never used…

    Liked by 1 person

      • Never got into sudoku… I always liked the word problems (natch? Lol) where you have to figure out a bunch of stuff – like the ages or order of 6 or 7 people/things based off of random clues or occasionally other math related order games… I suppose I should try sudoku again sometime… my brain likes to put things in order lol I used to do crosswords on occasion as well… don’t prefer the books for those though, just might be in the mood to do them in the newspaper once in awhile 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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