iGamer Reviews: Ace Attorney (Apollo Justice)

By Capcom.

For Nintendo DS.

AJustice

The Story

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Apollo Justice takes place seven years after the previous title, Trials and Tribulations, where the previous lead, Phoenix Wright, has been forced to give up being a lawyer, and instead is a pianist that also happens to play poker.

And, before you ask, no, you don’t play spend the game as Phoenix Wright playing the Piano. Rather, you play the new fledgling Defense Attorney, Apollo Justice. How does he have such a bizarre name? Well, apparently he was an orphan, so it’s entirely possible he picked his own name, or the Orphanage only had access to books about Greek mythology and modern philosophy. Nevertheless, he is the new protagonist and has his own share of conspiracies to investigate. In it, Apollo seeks to uncover the case that ruined Phoenix Wright, learn the identity of a panty stealing pervert, and go head to head with a German prosecutor that also happens to be a rockstar on the side.

Suffice to say, Ace Attorney has not forgotten its sense of humor.

The GamePlay

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For more details on the gameplay in the Ace Attorney series, check out this post.

As this is the first Ace Attorney title that was developed for the Nintendo DS, it makes sure to use all features of the device. The dual screens are clearly used to display different information, and both the touch screen and microphone are made part of the Investigation Phase in the game. Along with that, you too can shout “Objection!” and “Hold it!” into the microphone during the Court Phase to make Apollo shout those iconic phrases.

However, the main new feature in the title is in Perception. While we could easily tell in the early Ace Attorney titles when we had witnesses on the ropes, there was no way to actually call them on it. However, in Apollo Justice, you can do just that. Apollo is able to take note of nervous habits or tics that show if a witness is lying. While this is a very entertaining feature, its use is limited to only being in the Court Phase, when it could definitely be used during the Investigation Phase for interrogating others for information. Even then, there are a small number of situations where the nervous habit of the witness is so obscure, I  may never have made it through the sequence without looking up the answer.

Although, to be fair, this is a problem that has persisted throughout the series, and sometimes can be just as much the fault of the player as it is the developer.

Conclusion

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Apollo Justice brings several new concepts to the Ace Attorney table, which is sure to satisfy the fans. And, while I give it my personal recommendation, it lacks any groundbreaking features that would bring new players to the fold.

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