Layton Brothers Mystery Room is an iOS release from Level-5 Inc. It is available now as a free download on the App Store and contains additional in-app purchases.
Layton Brothers Mystery Room is a sequel of sorts to the popular Professor Layton series on the Nintendo DS and 3DS. Players will follow two characters: Inspector Alfiendi Layton (son of Professor Layton) and his newest assistant Lucy Baker. Together, they’re tasked with digging deep into some of the most puzzling and challenging crimes facing Scotland Yard. Headquartered in the "Mystery Room", Layton and Baker will encounter tons of unique and enjoyable characters, as well as a variety of puzzles.
There are numerous elements in Layton Brothers Mystery Room that provide various layers of depth. One of the first things that players will notice is that there’s a lot of conversation. This is necessary for the experience, but there are likely to be some players who are turned off by the large amount of required reading. For most, this shouldn’t be an issue since the dialogue is well-written and the characters are enjoyable. Outside of dialogue, players will also need to carefully read statements and testimonies from witnesses and suspects. Most of these statements have key words highlighted for easy reference, as players will need to look back on them later.
The cases Layton and Baker deal are usually centered on homicide. Because of this, players will spend a large amount of time investigating crime scenes and searching for evidence. When it comes to looking for clues, the game tends to lie on the easy side. When looking at the scene, players are able to rotate the view 360 degrees, in order to view the situation from all angles. Certain areas will be circled, and players can tap them to get a closer look. From there, player will be able to take a look at anything marked, as well as zoom in and out and find more potential evidence. Some of these segments are timed, while others last until the player can find the required piece of evidence.
Sorting through cases also requires a lot of direct interaction with witnesses and suspects. Layton Brothers Mystery Room isn’t a hard game because it will make you re-guess if you choose the wrong option, but the interactions make up for the lack of difficulty. Some characters are a bit on the bland side, but most feel lively and engaging and are the highlights of the game. At times, players will be forced to catch characters in a lie, present evidence to discredit or support an idea, or even accuse someone of murder. The game is forgiving of any mistakes made during these conversations, taking away from the potential challenge.
Layton Brothers Mystery Room comes with two free cases. These cases are lengthy and give players a good idea as to whether or not they want to purchase more. Players who want more Mystery Room can buy additional cases. Cases 003 through 006 come in a pack for $2.99, while 007 through 009 are bundled for $1.99. Costing less than a dollar each, players who enjoy the free cases will have no problem diving in and getting more. There’s a ton of content for a relatively small amount and the free sample is an excellent way to promote it.
Layton Brothers Mystery Room is a fun experience that will likely appeal to fans of the Professor Layton series, or fans of series like Ace Attorney. It’s not a serious murder mystery game, but the lightheartedness, combined with the varied characters and slick visuals creates a welcoming experience for most players.
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