While Professor Layton's main adventures are always released on Nintendo consoles, an upcoming spin-off will be launched on iPhone, iPad, and Android devices.

According to the scant details on offer in Japanese mag Famitsu, it's called Professor Layton and the Century of the Seven Phantom Thieves, and it features Layton and Luke tracking down burglars across London.

It's a social affair, and you can exchange intelligence with other players in order to catch the thieves. You'll also get costumes and items for your virtual avatar as rewards in the game.

It sounds like the game will be released for free, though you will be able to make in-app purchases to buy props for your avatar. No word on whether this will be made available outside of Japan: we'll let you know if we hear anything.

This is not the same as the previously announced iOS game Layton Brothers: Mystery Room, which is about investigating crime scenes and features Layton's son, Alphendi. Level-5 hasn't forgotten it about it: the game will be shown off at Tokyo Game Show 2012 (alongside these titles).