Generally favorable reviews - based on 62 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 57 out of 62
  2. Negative: 0 out of 62
Buy On
  1. Oct 29, 2010
    While these lackluster mini-games are no hidden-object puzzle or "make your own tea" chemistry set (as seen in Laytons 1 and 2), Unwound Future still has a solid set of puzzles for its main adventure, and the story itself is very engaging.
  2. Oct 21, 2010
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is far and away the best of this one-of-a-kind series.
  3. Oct 21, 2010
    As a puzzle game, Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is an excellent offering, however, as a Professor Layton game it is simply extraordinary.
  4. Oct 21, 2010
    It's perfectly designed for DS and something the whole family can get sucked into.
  5. Oct 21, 2010
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is a brain-twisting delight. Show up for the clever puzzles, stick around for the gorgeous visuals and quirky minigames.
  6. Oct 21, 2010
    Professor Layton and the Lost Future takes the core functionality of the previous two outings, expands on it considerably, wraps up the storyline in the most gripping fashion possible and heaps plenty of extras on top for good measure. This is most definitely the superlative entry in the Layton series so far.
  7. Oct 21, 2010
    The only reason not to play this is if you despise puzzles more than anything else. It has the story, characters, music, and more to keep any gamer satiated. The Professor delivers.
  8. As well-made and puzzle-crammed as the previous Layton games, and it's also the best one yet.
  9. Oct 21, 2010
    With a lengthy story mode and the addition of mini-games, picture books, and free downloadable puzzles, there is plenty of content here for those who enjoy puzzles.
  10. Oct 21, 2010
    With each installment of the franchise, I grow to adore Professor Layton and Luke and their delightful world all the more. All while sharpening my intellect. In the (hopefully wound) future, I doubt Level 5 will modify the formula any more heavily than they already have, and for once, that's fine by me.
  11. Oct 21, 2010
    The performances and animated cut-scenes are still as terrific as always, though; it's just a subpar script that brings it down slightly.
  12. Oct 21, 2010
    This third episode doesn't require knowledge of the previous games, but still builds the trilogy to an appropriately grand conclusion.
  13. Jan 18, 2011
    Unwound Future is the best title in the Professor Layton series, but you would be doing yourself a disservice if you didn't play through the first two games to learn about the main characters.
  14. Jan 13, 2011
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future doesn't just build over the previous games, it further improves the experience, both in quality and quantity.
  15. Jan 10, 2011
    Professor Layton and The Lost Future manages to surprise again by its very strong cohesion.
  16. Jan 8, 2011
    Waiting for the fourth, promising episode, Unwound Future delivers hours of entertaining puzzles, easily the best designed in the series, and an involving narration that mixes the usual list of charming characters and a moving end. A must have for any DS owner.
  17. Oct 26, 2010
    Although it's basically more of the same, this latest Layton outing is the most enjoyable, attractive, addictive and refined one yet. An awesome reminder of why the Nintendo DS remains an essential mobile gaming platform.
  18. Oct 25, 2010
    An absolute delight.
  19. Oct 22, 2010
    The game is all the better because it doesn't strain to give its puzzles a superficial connection to its script – I don't need to see that pointless struggle.
  20. Oct 21, 2010
    More than just being a family friendly puzzle game, there is something of considerable substance and style here for any gamer. In fact the quality of the story telling and difficulty of some puzzles felt more like playing Uncharted than something on a Nintendo console.
  21. Oct 21, 2010
    For fans of the series, Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is anoter great addition to the world of Layton.
  22. 90
    At this point, the Professor Layton games are a known commodity, but that commodity is a finely crafted one.
  23. Oct 21, 2010
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is most certainly the best title in the series to date.
  24. Nintendo Power
    Oct 21, 2010
    The best Professor Layton game yet. [Nov 2010, p.87]
  25. Oct 21, 2010
    For those who enjoyed the first two Layton games, Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is a must-have, period. And if you haven't played a Layton game yet, what are you waiting for? This is easily one of the strongest series on DS in every regard, from the brilliantly crafted puzzles to the exquisite art.
  26. Oct 21, 2010
    The Unwound Future is a fitting end to this first Professor Layton trilogy. Even if it doesn't finish the series, it resolves some of the main plot lines.
  27. Oct 21, 2010
    Unwound Future isn't innovative or groundbreaking, and what few changes exist are mostly just new puzzle types, but the game and overall story are polished, interesting, and just simply fun. Layton and Luke's adventures will have you playing for a while, and even though the game isn't doing anything new, it avoids ever feeling stale.
  28. Oct 21, 2010
    As the only game franchise that my wife actually wants to play, I have no problem giving the Unwound Future a massive stamp of approval.
  29. Oct 21, 2010
    It's safe to say that if you're a fan of the franchise, this is a game you absolutely do not want to miss. And if by chance you've yet to experience the series, this enthralling title should offer up all the incentive you need to finally give it a try.
  30. Oct 21, 2010
    The game is absolutely overflowing with content, and the emotional, intriguing story will keep you hooked right through the end.
  31. Oct 21, 2010
    Layton and the Unwound Future is the best title of the franchise so far, packed with new puzzles and an intriguing new story that will take both characters -Layton and Luke- to a new but-not-better future.
  32. Oct 21, 2010
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future offers the same great experience from the last two games. If you're in need of something different and want to exercise the brain, this is the correct answer.
  33. Jan 18, 2011
    If you haven't picked up Unwound Future yet, do it. If you haven't played any of these games yet, what are you waiting for?
  34. Jan 13, 2011
    Professor Layton and The Unwound Future is a jigsaw puzzle that follows the path of his predecessors, delivering once again a great experience.
  35. Games Master UK
    Dec 25, 2010
    In an age of brash shooters, Layton is a fine beacon of intellectual hope. [Issue#232, p.71]
  36. Oct 21, 2010
    Lovely. [Oct 2010, p.47]
  37. Oct 21, 2010
    The game's production values--from the artwork and voice acting, to the music and video sequences--are among the best in any handheld game to date.
  38. Jan 13, 2011
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future offers the same great experience from the last games. A must-have for Layton fans.
  39. Jan 3, 2011
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is yet another winner from Level 5. It both entertains and challenges the mind through its clever puzzles, brilliant story, and convincing characters.
  40. Oct 25, 2010
    With more varied puzzles, top-notch graphics and a wonderful storyline, Professor Layton and The Lost Future is a game that a true gentleman or lady shouldn't pass up.
  41. Oct 21, 2010
    It's the Layton series' uniquely endearing atmosphere and the developer's obvious love for its creation that makes this return visit to the good Professor feel like a genuine pleasure, rather than an over-familiar chore.
  42. Oct 21, 2010
    Mixing a charming, beautiful art style with engaging puzzle types and an engrossing story that ties it all together, Professor Layton and the Unwound Future makes a fine addition to the series.
  43. Oct 21, 2010
    Superbly integrated puzzles and a captivating tale make Professor Layton's latest assignment worthy of your affection.
  44. Oct 21, 2010
    Bottom line, if Layton didn't float you boat the first time around, nothing is going to change your mind here. But it's definitely worth it for fans to jump back into a world where you can't walk five steps without finding a puzzle to solve.
  45. Oct 21, 2010
    If you liked any of the previous Layton games, you should definitely get Unwound Future.
  46. Oct 21, 2010
    The disconnect between the mystery story and the puzzle gameplay is not a damning curse for the Professor Layton series, this game included.
  47. Jan 18, 2011
    A more-than-worthy sequel in this inherently awesome franchise. Once you start playing, you won't put it down. That's a guarantee.
  48. Jan 15, 2011
    Not so good as we could expect but better than the most of the puzzle games for Nintendo Ds, Professor Layton and the Lost Future shows a the same structure as the previous chapters: its strenght, but its weakness too.
  49. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Jan 13, 2011
    Amusing mini-games, catchy music and sweet visuals are trademarks of the Layton series – and the third installment is no different. New story and a couple of improvements make this puzzler a great adventure again. [Issue#197]
  50. Jan 12, 2011
    Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is certainly the best chapter of the entire saga. The puzzles are varied and clever: ideal for fans, perfect for rookies. The script is thrilling and full of twists, while the classic visual and sound style delight the videoplayer.
  51. Jan 5, 2011
    The third adventure of Professor Layton is the most exciting, complex and surprising up untill now. As long as you don't expect great changes to the formula, this third episode should also be in your Layton collection.
  52. Oct 25, 2010
    The third 8 out of 10 in a row for the Professor Layton series. There's not much news here, but it's an extremely well-made adventures with great movies and a very charming style that is easy to fall for again and again. Problem solution is clever and the characters memorable. A must for puzzle fans who didn't get tired of the predecessors.
  53. Oct 25, 2010
    The plot may have gone off the deep end but thankfully the puzzles remain perfectly logical in what is Layton's biggest and arguably best adventure yet.
  54. Oct 21, 2010
    Full of twists and odd plot turns, Professor Layton and the Unwound Future is a well put together episode. With 165 puzzles, its as enchanting as ever backgrounds, its appealing story and well directed animated sequences, you can expect hours of fun. Sure, the formula is starting to repeat itself a little. But its magic still works, even though one may find some less well-paced dialogs, and a more "casual"-oriented appeal. They don't interfere with the fun, and that's still a very nice journey to live... through time!
  55. Oct 21, 2010
    A pretty uneven experience. Most casual fans of the franchise might not feel particularly compelled to venture past the game's sagging midpoint -- but the diehards will be rewarded with a satisfying conclusion that finally shows that, yes, the titular pedagogue has (gasp!) feelings.
  56. Oct 21, 2010
    Still, the presentation is as charming as ever, and bar a few niggles, the experience as a whole is extremely enjoyable.
  57. Oct 21, 2010
    There is more running back and forth than I would like but I still enjoyed the Unwound Future. It's a terrific title for fans of the franchise.
  58. 70
    The graphics and atmosphere are well done and colorful on every screen, and while the characters are a bit too talkative, they are also funny and sufficiently silly. But the story and gameplay seem entirely detached as usual, and it's a shame that the story devs and puzzle devs apparently didn't have more meetings together.
  59. Edge Magazine
    Dec 21, 2010
    Puzzle hunting is the only hassle in an otherwise laidback world. This niggle aside, Professor Layton remains a fine antidote to dull Sunday afternoons. [Dec 2010, p.99]
  60. Oct 24, 2010
    Quotation forthcoming.
  61. Oct 21, 2010
    It may not be quite as good as the others, but it's still required gaming for the Layton-obsessed, and a high recommendation for anyone who loves puzzles.
  62. games(TM)
    Jan 20, 2011
    As a standalone adventure, The Lost Future can't help but disappoint once its bite-sized, unimaginative nature begins to show through. [Issue#102, p.120]

Awards & Rankings

#5 Most Discussed DS Game of 2010
#11 Most Shared DS Game of 2010
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 130 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 5 out of 130
  1. Nov 28, 2011
    Amazing Story, brilliant puzzles. This is indeed the greatest Layton game thus far, the music is amazing, the visuals are amazing (If you likeAmazing Story, brilliant puzzles. This is indeed the greatest Layton game thus far, the music is amazing, the visuals are amazing (If you like the style), and the ending had me in tears. No questions asked, 10/10. Full Review »
  2. Sep 13, 2010
    Definitely the strongest of the three Layton games released in the US so far, Unwound Future successfully blends casual puzzle solving alongDefinitely the strongest of the three Layton games released in the US so far, Unwound Future successfully blends casual puzzle solving along with a compelling storyline. The formula hasn't changed an awful lot since the first title, though many subtle improvements to game mechanics and general presentation have been made. Cut scenes and audio files are clearer than ever, with added improvements to the second titles 'memo' function (such as the ability to change ink colour) being of great aid during those more trickier of brain teasers. The pace of the game may be a little too slow for some, though it's not difficult to become captivated by Layton's gorgeous looking surroundings and intrigued by some of the more perplexing mysteries that pop up during the final half of the adventure. Voice acting, be it fitting, can seem incredibly cheesy and at some points fails to aid the experience as it irritates more than captivates.

    Hint Coins have almost tripled in numbers since the first title, with the new optional 'Super Hint' function allowing far more users to solve even the most complicated of math puzzles without feeling like you've cheated.

    If you enjoyed the first two Layton outings- I cannot recommended this third game enough, as it's certainly the best of the three. Puzzles remain fun and do not detract from the experience as much as they did with Curious Village, with most being optional if players wish to favour the narrative and push on with it instead.
    Full Review »
  3. Jan 14, 2014
    Easily the best of the Layton bunch. The puzzles are as strong as ever, but it is the epic, yet very touching story that elevates this gameEasily the best of the Layton bunch. The puzzles are as strong as ever, but it is the epic, yet very touching story that elevates this game above its immensely charming peers. Full Review »