Author Topic: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game  (Read 5628 times)

sprak

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Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« on: February 19, 2010, 12:42:08 pm »
My copy arrived yesterday, and I managed to get through the first mission.  Thought I would post my thoughts on the game so far, as I might not get too much farther in it (more on this later).

Gameplay:
The game attempts to meld a traditional platform game with brain/puzzles games of the Layton variety.  While the initial level is a tutorial to teach you the basic mechanics, you can see that the blend works in the context of the Lupin franchise.  Lupin must use his brain to avoid guards, traps, etc. -- the typical platform fodder.  However, he must also solve puzzles to unlock doors, disable traps, and generally make off with the treasure he wants.

The platform aspect is straightforward; the tutorial level had Lupin climbing ladders and pipes to get around a vigilant guard.  He then entered a room where boxes and switches opened doors to access puzzles and the end of the level.  Puzzles are indicated with the text 'IQ' on them, so it does not appear you have to hunt for them as you would in Layton.  At least, this is the case so far; again, this is a tutorial level, so finding puzzles might be harder later on.  I haven't seen anything in the manual either way on that point.  Also present in the level was a green card with the letter 'H' on it.  No, it wasn't a girly magazine for Lupin to ogle; picking it up gave Lupin another hint to use when solving puzzles.

One of the few non-standard touches is the 'scroll' mode; this pauses the game and allows you to scroll the screen around the current area.  You can see where the guards currently are, inspect puzzles to see how high the IQ value is, and generally plan how you are going to get to the next area.  Overall, nothing revolutionary, but the controls are smooth and familiar.


Puzzles:
The tutorial level featured five puzzles; each puzzle is given an IQ value that indicates how difficult it is.  It was an even mix between IQ 90 and 100 puzzles.  Much like Layton, you are given the option to 'buy' hints on how to solve the puzzle.  The initial puzzles had no time limit, and failing to provide the right solution did not seem to cause any penalties.  Successfully solving a puzzle brings up a screen with a bulls-eye; haven't translated enough of the text around this, but it appears to be the screen indicating your rank for solving the puzzle.  All my solutions hit the bulls-eye, so I don't know if solving a puzzle poorly affects the story.

The last puzzle of my session was timed; you had to use a flashlight via the touch screen to find the fuse that lead to a pile of dynamite.  Clever... this sort of puzzle is spot on for the Lupin franchise.  Think fast o' lanky, lecherous one...  Not sure what would have happened if I let the time expire; might start up a new game and find out.

One thing the ranking system doesn't take into account is the fact that I am not a native reader of Japanese.  I could figure out four of the five puzzles by what text I could read and how the puzzle was laid out.  One I had to skip entirely as I could not discern what they wanted me to do, and I was too tired to drag out my dictionaries and slog through translating its instructions.  Again, no idea if skipping puzzles will affect the outcome of the game; no idea if skipped puzzles go somewhere for you to try on their own.


Story:
Haven't translated the bulk of the story so far, but it revolves around someone or something called Paradox (IIRC).  I think it is a someone as a ghostly figure appeared at the end of the level, and Lupin called out 'Paradox!?'.  The game so far has provided most of the story with actual dialogue from the anime voice actors (At least, they all sound like them.  If not them, spot on impressions).  It slips into plain text reading at points, but the balance between the two has favored speech more.


Should you buy this game?
This will depend on how comfortable you are reading Japanese; I'm not sure how far I'll mange to get through this game.  Some puzzles you can likely figure out by sight, but I would wager that as they increase in difficulty, being able to read the puzzle description becomes more vital.  If someone ever posts an FAQ, that would go along way to making this an easy purchase.  I'll be taking notes along the way to such an end, but I don't know if I'll ever make the promised land of Fujiko rubbing.

It is a fun blend of action and puzzles, the sort of game most fans envisioned for a Lupin DS title.  Definitely worth owning if you are a Lupin fan, but the need for Japanese reading proficiency makes it a tough call.

GATSU

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2010, 02:54:54 am »
Figured they'd make the puzzles revolve around word puns, considering those demos.  :'( I'm still hoping one of the niche American publishers of import games might consider bringing it over here, though.

sprak

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2010, 02:17:14 pm »
I should also mention a nifty little flourish they put into the game.  Much like the Super Famicom game, Lupin gets bored if you just leave him standing around.  This time, he doesn't start smoking but cycles through blowing bubble gum and general fidgeting.  The bubble gum bursts startling him... amusing...

sprak

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2010, 08:49:52 pm »
Have come back to this game after a large dose of Heavy Rain.  Looks like you don't have to solve any of the IQ puzzles on a level to get past it.  There are various platform puzzles to solve to advance; once you do those, you are forced to solve one IQ puzzle.  However, there seems to be no penalty for getting the answer wrong, and eventually, the game will help you along with the solution to keep you going.

Currently stuck on a level ending IQ puzzle, but it is possible to skip the other puzzles and keep going.  From what little I've translated across the net, the only thing you miss out on is bonus content.  You can come back to the IQ puzzles later, so one could blaze through the story and then take their time trying to translate the unsolved puzzles.

TMStepper

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2010, 01:55:20 am »
I got a copy of the game as a birthday present, and am enjoying it immensely.  Unfortunately, not being able to read Japanese has gone from a minor inconvience(some of the IQ challenges I have no clue what they want), to actually getting me stuck.  I'm trying to get past Zenigata's elaborate door lock in Herod's Ruins.  As this is the only place I've seen any commentary on it, anybody have any ideas?

Reed

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2010, 02:58:24 am »
I got a copy of the game as a birthday present, and am enjoying it immensely.  Unfortunately, not being able to read Japanese has gone from a minor inconvience(some of the IQ challenges I have no clue what they want), to actually getting me stuck.  I'm trying to get past Zenigata's elaborate door lock in Herod's Ruins.  As this is the only place I've seen any commentary on it, anybody have any ideas?

Hey, welcome to the forums! Good to have you aboard!

There's what appears to be a walkthrough in Japanese on this site.

I'm not sure exactly if this is the section you're on, but this one in particular is called "Outwit Pops Disguise Operation," and is Herod Ruins-Stage 5. Click the spoiler button below for the Google Translate version of that section.

(click to show/hide)
-R. Nelson

TMStepper

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2010, 09:09:07 am »
Thanks!  That was exactly what I was looking for.

I'm glad to be here.

I just wish Google translate made a little more sense......   ;D

Reed

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2010, 12:32:52 pm »
Thanks!  That was exactly what I was looking for.

I'm glad to be here.

I just wish Google translate made a little more sense......   ;D

Yeah, some of the lines are confusing to read. There's another great auto-translator out there on Excite Japan's website. It's not as flexible (you HAVE to copy-and-paste everything into that white box), but I find it's usually easier to read than what Google Translate produces. Give it a try. Be sure to switch the little menu there to highlighting the lower option before clicking the grey "translate" button.
-R. Nelson

GATSU

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2010, 03:37:38 pm »
Maybe someone should just translate that walk-through and credit the site for Gamefaqs?

Reed

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2010, 08:36:03 pm »
Maybe someone should just translate that walk-through and credit the site for Gamefaqs?

Sounds like someone's volunteering, to me! :)
-R. Nelson

GATSU

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2010, 06:21:51 am »
If I knew Japanese, sure.  :P

Jo

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2010, 05:55:45 pm »
Maybe someone should just translate that walk-through and credit the site for Gamefaqs?

Sounds like someone's volunteering, to me! :)
I'll see what I can do. I no longer own a DS so I don't know what the game play is like aside from the demos.

Lupin III Manga Database[Scanlations and such are here]

Reed

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2010, 03:03:22 am »
Maybe someone should just translate that walk-through and credit the site for Gamefaqs?

Sounds like someone's volunteering, to me! :)
I'll see what I can do. I no longer own a DS so I don't know what the game play is like aside from the demos.

Hey, that's pretty great for you to help out like that. Good on ya! :) (By the way, I was really just ribbing GATSU -- I would think translating the manga would be a bigger deal...but everybody's gotta have a hobby, right?)
-R. Nelson

Jo

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2010, 04:51:14 pm »
Maybe someone should just translate that walk-through and credit the site for Gamefaqs?

Sounds like someone's volunteering, to me! :)
I'll see what I can do. I no longer own a DS so I don't know what the game play is like aside from the demos.

Hey, that's pretty great for you to help out like that. Good on ya! :) (By the way, I was really just ribbing GATSU -- I would think translating the manga would be a bigger deal...but everybody's gotta have a hobby, right?)
Well I figured if I was going to read it I may as well translate it as I go since it all ends of up processing in English in my head anyways.  ;D It does seem like a fun time killer but I'm not about to go out and buy a new DS :( Can't afford it haha.

And those manga scans are indeed being worked on. Expect a new chapter within the next week (maybe two if I can muster up the energy to scan) :D I finally figured out why the storyline was all choppy (my mistake) so this newer one will be the actual continuation of where TP left off. I'll post more details about that later though.

Lupin III Manga Database[Scanlations and such are here]

TMStepper

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Re: Initial thoughts on Lupin DS game
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2010, 01:49:17 am »
Well, I think I finished the game.  Mostly. 

Sort of?

The Japanese walkthrough ends at the end of level 6, so I had to go through the last three levels without assistance.  Once I beat it, Lupin and Jigen pop up on the screen, I think telling me that I need to beat at least 24 of the IQ challenges to unlock the  mini-game.(This is a guess on my part.  The number 24 popped up in the text)  You can also play the mini-game of "Zenigata's report", which is a fill in the blank style game.  As it's all in Japanese, I have no idea what Zenigata's reporting to his superiors.

Did I enjoy it?  Yes.  It was a lot of fun, the IQ tests are interesting(although I hate the clock ones), and it felt like they were trying to capture the feel of a Lupin special.  I would have preferred the cut scenes to be animated, though.  The game opening is kind of long to be watching these static figures, and there's virtually no difference between Goemon's normal look and his "I'm concerned" look. 

I'm hoping they make another one.  I'm also hoping they have an option in the next one to switch from Japanese text to English