The game is almost a carbon copy, with respect to style, of Professor Layton. If you've played Professor Layton games you would probably feel right at home with this one as the map, navigation, and even puzzle intro/outro animations borrow from Layton. However, it seems to be more simplified. You don't have to incessantly touch everywhere looking for hint coins because you're awarded 5 with each puzzle you are able to solve. You don't have Layton berating you (as Luke Triton) for not knowing how to solve some riddle.
The puzzles are a bit simpler in difficulty than the Professor Layton variety, but I wouldn't say they are designed for children (which the cartoonish art and dialog would suggest). As an older gamer, I don't mind this at all. For reference in my tastes, I'm also a fan of the LEGO adventure series. In my opinion this game was designed to be more of a collection of "just right" difficulty brain teasers. Your exploration is pretty much linear as you uncover more story elements, and then the puzzles which go with them. I found myself not really caring for the story-line too much as I played through, however it does grab some interest occasionally.
As you play through you will unlock a bunch of bonus puzzles. They aren't mandatory and can be completed at your leisure. The packaging for the game boasts over 270 puzzles and I think most of them are unlocked as bonus puzzles. Not a bad thing.