- Developer: Capcom
- Publisher: Capcom
- Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC
- Price: $29.99
- Release Date: April 9th, 2019
- Reviewed on: March 30, 2019
- Reviewed On: Nintendo Switch
Warning: This post contains some spoilers for the game Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy
The criminal justice series is coming to modern platforms with updated HD graphics in the first 3 games! Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy’s objective is simple, defend your client, and prove them innocent. This collection is comprised of the first 3 games in the series: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice for All, and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice and Tribulations. All three of these games were originally on the Nintendo Game Boy Advance, and are making a return on the Switch. These games are known for being on Nintendo handhelds such as the GBA, DS, Wii, and 3DS, and it’s nice to see them back on the Switch. The Ace Attorney games were first ported to the west on the DS in 2005. Since then, Capcom has released the series worldwide. The trilogy also brings a new feature to the three games, the magnifying glass. It can be used during investigation to find evidence in the areas you search.
The gameplay in Ace Attorney is very unique. The first game starts in 2016. You play as Phoenix Wright, a rookie attorney at the beginning of the first game. At the end of Trials and Tribulations, Phoenix Wright is one of the most successful defense attorneys around. Each game is divided into chapters. Each chapter is a new case, each being unique. At the beginning of each chapter, you see a cutscene showing the crime and who committed it. You then find out who your client is, and you have to prove them innocent. In order to do so, you must travel around on Investigation Days, and find evidence to use in trial. Trial days are limited to three, due to a law made early in the first game. In court, your job as the defendant is to pick apart the witness testimonies, and find the lies and prove them. You can use the evidence you found in investigation to prove lies, or you can press certain statements to make the witness crack. Finding the right statement during your cross-examination is extremely fun and satisfying, and this kept me busy for hours. The gameplay doesn’t feel repetitive, as there is a huge cast of enjoyable and unique characters, who keep you occupied and interested. I enjoyed every case, where each one was different and unique from the rest. Each game has a rival prosecutor that you will face in court. All three are unique in their own way, and the rival aspect made me try harder to find the truth. The first case in every game serves as a tutorial, so you can jump into any game and understand the mechanics and such.
The first game, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, has five cases. The first case introduces you to Phoenix and his mentor, Mia Fey. Phoenix has his first trial, and Mia is there to be your mentor and help you. The evidence presented at the beginning is a statue of “The Thinker”, which is the murder weapon. By the end of the case, Phoenix Wright wins the case, and proves that he can be a successful defendant to the judge and the jury alike. The second case follows the murder of Phoenix’s mentor, Mia. Mia’s sister, Maya, is accused of being the murderer by Miss April, a lady staying in the hotel across the street. The third case follows the murder at a film studio, and the murder is placed on the star of Samurai Jack. In this case, you travel around the different sets at the studio, to try to figure out who murdered the Evil Magistrate. The fourth case has Phoenix defending his childhood friend, Edgeworth, who just happens to be his rival prosecutor in the first game. The fifth case, which was introduced in the DS version, has you defending Lana Skye, the district Chief Prosecutor.
The second game, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice for All, has a total of four cases The first case has you wake up, unsure of who or where you are. A woman comes up to you, saying her life is in your hands, and that you had promised to defend her a few days prior. The second case has you defending Maya Fey once again, as she believes she murdered someone at her home. The third case is Turnabout Big Top. This case follows a murder on the scene of the circus. Of all of the cases between the three games, I disliked this one the most. The defendant isn’t very lively, and there isn’t much to this case. The fourth and final case for the second game, Farewell, my Turnabout, takes you back to Global Studios, as another actor has been murdered. Will Powers, your defendant from the third case in the first game returns, as a witness this time.
The third game, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice and Tribulations, has five cases. The first case, Turnabout Memories, takes you back five years where you play as Mia Fey, where you have to prove Phoenix Wright, a college student, innocent. The second case, The Stolen Turnabout, has you defend Ron DeLite, as he is believed to have robbed a bank in a mask. The third case, Recipe for Turnabout, has you defending a familiar face, where all seems lost since the Judge determined her guilty prior. The fourth case, Turnabout Beginnings, has you follow a case that happened when Mia Fey was a rookie attorney. It is a flashback case, and this case kept Mia out of court for one year. The fifth case, Bridge to the Turnabout, has you follow a murder with the sword mentioned in The Stolen Turnabout.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy is a wonderful blast from the past, and with updated visuals, the first three games look better and play better than ever. With over 65 hours of gameplay and charming and unique characters, this collection is well worth picking up for new fans of the series and old fans alike.