The credits roll, you watch the epilogue, then you close your DS and stare into space for a moment, your head swimming with thoughts of loved ones, partings, and things youâ€™d do differently in life if you had a second chance. All you can say is, â€œWow.â€
Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is that kind of gameâ€”A surprising, emotion-grabbing, one-hundred-percent satisfying work of wonder. I canâ€™t believe something so epic just took place on my Olâ€™ Fat Blueâ€™s tiny little DS screens.
Most of the game is an entertaining romp through crazy encounters, amazing locales and preposterous action sequences intertwined with an onslaught of maddening puzzles.
And that would have been enoughâ€¦
But, in its final chapters, Unwound Future soars through many great plot twists, leading to a final bombshell thatâ€”in terms of emotional punchâ€”ranks right up there with the finales of FF X, Wind Waker, Kingdom Hearts and FF VIIâ€™s first disc. You donâ€™t need to have played the first two Layton games: If youâ€™re new to the series, youâ€™ll only miss out on a few minor in-jokes.
This gameâ€™s finale is so powerful, in fact, that it gives new fuel to the question that wonâ€™t go away: Are games art? Certainly, they contain art, but what of the final product?
All I know is, I just spent twenty hours enjoying wonderful illustrations and animation, excellent acting, witty writing and an awesome musical score. It all culminated in one the most emotional entertainment experiences Iâ€™ve ever had. Itâ€™s certainly art to me.
As far as Iâ€™m concerned, Layton has become one of Nintendoâ€™s very best characters. I hope the company has many more adventures plannedâ€¦and theyâ€™d better include the Professor in the next Smash Brothers!
Have any of our readers finished this adventure? What did you think? (No spoilers, please).