Professor Layton vs Detective Pikachu: who wins?

“Few things satisfy like a puzzle solved.”

So says Professor Layton – and who are we to disagree? He helps us think outside the box and keep those brain cogs turning. Getting the answers right, and adding the max number of Picarats to our stash, feels good.

For some puzzle game fans, there’s a new hero on the block: Poke-sleuth Detective Pikachu. Playing as the assistant to a weirdly intelligent Pikachu turns the ‘trainer and Pokemon’ pairing upside down. Plus, just how many games get made into movies? It’s not that many.

We’re pitting these gumshoes against each other in a bunch of categories to see who’d win. Get ready for a battle of wits, accessories, and hot beverages.

Personality

Professor Layton: Hershel Layton’s an English gentleman with perfect manners. He knows how to play the piano, ride a horse, fence, and make a good cup of tea. But there’s still a lot we don’t know about the professor. Even Phoenix Wright called him ‘the biggest puzzle of them all’.

Detective Pikachu: A tough, surly detective in Pokemon form. (‘Hard-boiled’… isn’t that a Chansey?) Voiced by Ryan Reynolds in English for the movie version. The official Twitter’s nothing but memes. What more do we need to say? Except that we can’t watch Deadpool in the same way ever again.

Winner: Detective Pikachu

Hats

Professor Layton: A black silk top hat with a red band. Is Professor Layton secretly Moominpappa? The professor’s is way taller, has a super sad backstory, and gets a puzzle to itself in The Unwound Future. Along with this classic Layton line: “Is there any greater proof of one’s gentlemanly nature than a fine top hat?”

Detective Pikachu: That classic tweed deerstalker hat’s meant to remind us of Sherlock Holmes. So it’s iconic, yeah, but not an original. Now, if the hat had Pikachu ears on it… like these real ones you can buy online… The inside’s as important as the outside, mainly for the info about Tim’s dad sewn in underneath.

Winner: Professor Layton

Reputation

Professor Layton: You’d expect a professor to be widely known and respected, and the praise Layton gets from Scotland Yard officers proves the point. He’s envied for his intelligence – being called on to lend a hand with tougher crimes is how many Professor Layton games start.

Detective Pikachu: Pikachu is the most well known Pokemon, Ash Ketchum’s BFF, and the Poke-mascot for the whole franchise. Detective Pikachu rides on the back of that recognition – to a point. Everyone loves a cute Pikachu, but wouldn’t ask one to investigate a murder.

Winner: Detective Pikachu

Love (or not) of coffee

Professor Layton: We’ve already noted that he likes tea instead. Pandora’s Box/The Diabolical Box has a whole sub-puzzle about making new tea blends. Layton’s said he doesn’t mind the scent of coffee, but won’t drink it. Too much caffeine, and he’d start getting antsy for puzzle hints.

Detective Pikachu: To say Pikachu loves coffee is an understatement. He’s an addict who takes his coffee black. In the game, he even starts talking about the ‘pleasant acidity’ and bitterness. And in the movie trailer, we see Pikachu drinking the leftovers from used paper cups, ewwwww.

Winner: depends how much you like coffee…

Crime-solving and puzzle-solving ability

Professor Layton: If the professor didn’t know how to solve puzzles, he wouldn’t appear in so many games. That’s a no-brainer. Hint coins’ll only get you so far (trust us, we’ve used enough of them). And hey, becoming a professor in the first place takes brain power.

Detective Pikachu: It’s said that this Pikachu is ‘exceptionally smart’. Knowing how to speak English (to Tim) is a great start. Here’s the thing – we haven’t seen our tiny yellow detective solve anything. In-game puzzles are down to the player to answer, and the movie trailer’s given nothing away.

Winner: Professor Layton

Sidekicks

Professor Layton: Luke, Flora and Emmy have all proved their worth as Layton’s partners in crime-solving. Each of them cracked a bunch of problems by themselves. And then there was that one time the professor teamed up with an ace attorney

Detective Pikachu: In the games and the movie, Tim is the only human who can understand what Pikachu says. He helps track down clues and unravel mysteries. But Tim’s just 1 human dude, and not a dude who had much previous interest in detective work.

Winner: Professor Layton

Tie-in merch

Professor Layton: Outside of the games themselves (always check for console and region locking!) and the Professor Layton Nendoroid, the variety of official merch isn’t so wide. Plus Katrielle Layton’s arguably as popular as the professor (in Japan, at least).

Detective Pikachu: Socks. Detective Pikachu socks. And the hat with ears. We could leave it at that. But seriously, this sleuthing Pika’s got plushies, badges, card game, tote bags and an Amiibo.

Winner: Detective Pikachu

Few things satisfy like ketchup

Looks like our overall winner is… wait, it’s a draw? Maybe the solution to this problem is to call it equal.

And we’re hoping by now that knowing where to find Professor Layton and/or Detective Pikachu goods isn’t still a mystery for you. The biggest hint we can give you is to check what’s listed on our website.

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