Reviewed On: Nintendo 3DS

Available For: Nintendo 3DS

Publisher: SEGA

Developer: SEGA

Genre: Puzzle

Age: 12 (PEGI)

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Professor Layton has hung up his investigative boots and reached for his Michael Jackson style dancing shoes. Rhythm Thief and the Emperor's Treasure isn’t actually a Professor Layton game, but anybody would be easily forgiven for thinking it is.

Raphael is a well known Parisian thief on a mission to find his father who disappeared years ago. A new lead takes Raphael to The Louvre and then on a whirlwind adventure that's as humorous as it is ridiculous.

It’s a good, harmless and wacky yarn.

The storyline sequences are pebble dashed generously between interactive moments which include both minigames and general exploration.

Dance sections rely on the well-timed slashing, prodding and circling of the stylus to gain a score and move on to the next section.

Although they all vary in their situation and aesthetics, each one shares a similar trait – if you’ve got no rhythm, you’ve got no chance.

Puzzles offer a style of play which takes thought. Although these even still rely on the use of music and sound.

General exploration is where things really feel like a Professor Layton game as players travel between still animation scenes to unravel the tale. On these screens, players also find coins and other hidden goodies in the scenery.

Comparisons can also be taken from SEGA’s Space Channel 5, a game that’s clearly been an influence with the dancing segments.

SEGA’s experience clearly shines through at these points.

Mini-games already played can be revisited at any time, and with a ranking system for each game in, there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be played again.

Graphically, narratively and interactively things don’t get much better than this. Sure the story is insane, and the format is massively rippedoff, but the emphasis on audio gives Rhythm Thief its own unique buzz.

SCORE: 8 / 10

PROS: Plenty of mini-games to get involved with, all centering around the theme of rhythm and music. It's got great visuals and the storyline itself is insane in often a good way.

CONS: The format is sometimes a little too familiar and the storyline is often insane in a stupid way.