Doctor Lautrec and the Forgotten Knights
A puzzle-solving professor. Where have we seen that before?
Professor Layton and the Mask of Miracle may not arrive on 3DS until 2012 at the earliest. Fortunately, there's Doctor Lautrec and the Forgotten Knights, Konami's Layton inspired adventure starring a brilliant professor and his pint-sized assistant. Clearly, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
The game takes place in 19th century Europe, where the mystery obsessed Jean-Pierre Lautrec meets a woman named Marie in possession of a strange gadget. When combined with a map, the gadget seemingly displays the location of a lost treasure belonging to Louis XIV of the House of Bourbon, which collapsed one hundred years ago.
Lautrec and his partner in crime, Sophie, set off to claim the treasure, only to encounter the Knights of the Iron Mask, servants of the royal family, and a strange man called Vidocq. As expected, finding fortune and glory won't be easy.
On the positive side, it'll be fun to watch, thanks to hours of expertly animated cut scenes.
Part of the Forgotten Knights takes place inside dungeons located in Paris, where you'll solve over 250 unique puzzles. Some task you with drawing, while others involve matching objects, spotting differences within the environments and searching for clues that may require the system's glasses free 3D to locate; the story is told in 2D.
From what we've been told, you'll find what Konami calls "living treasure", protected by the guardian spirits, creatures you must defeat. From there, it appears you can use collected treasure in some fashion, as each artifact has a unique ability, giving the game a role-playing element.
In addition, you control the Doctor, guiding him through the underground mines and catacombs. That, combined with being able to fight enemies definitely separates Lautrec from Layton.
We just hope Forgotten Knights' puzzles keep us glued to our 3DS systems. Thus far, it appears that Konami is on the right track. We'll let you know if Doctor Lautrec has the adventuring spirit when the game debuts this September.