Edited by: Jade Swann
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy was developed and published by Capcom. The visual-novel-like courtroom adventure isn’t a “new” game of course, but a packaged deal of three previous Phoenix Wright games that were originally released for the Game Boy Advance.
Much anticipated by fans, this port does its best in order to recreate the experience that gained the Phoenix Wright titles such a cult following in the first place: by providing a gripping and fast-paced courtroom experience with some added drama for good measure.
PORTING THE EXPERIENCE
As this is not a native PC game, some issues are to be expected, and indeed, they become apparent as soon as Ace Attorney Trilogy launches. The resolution is incredibly low, and for monitors with higher refresh rates, the game can appear sped up. The title also struggles to properly recognize additional GPUs if they come alongside an integrated graphics chip. For less-than-tech-savvy users, this means that these issues could severely impact the playthrough experience, though they are all fixable one way or another.
Something else that affects the overall experience is the incredibly lean options section. The lack of text speed options and similar things like text size feel a bit lacking compared to similarly text-heavy titles.
THE CASE OF THE ROOKIE ATTORNEY
Our protagonist, Phoenix Wright, has a somewhat unusual entrance to the legal world in that his first few cases are all very closely centered around people he knows. Still, he manages to win them of course, assuming you can correctly lead him through the investigation, cross-examination, and more. The beginning is a little slow-paced, but once the first case really gets going, things speed up well enough.
For fans already familiar with the series, there is nothing new here. This trilogy is quite literally a repackaging of three previously released titles. Don’t grab it expecting never-before-seen trials, if you are familiar with the original games. If you aren’t familiar, or if you don’t mind replaying them, the cases in the trilogy are fun, gripping, dramatic, and more than a little wild — exactly what we wish real court was like!
COURT IMITATES LIFE
Perhaps the most standout aspect of this title is the stellar writing. Both during the cases and during the investigative parts, the dialogue and scene-work is spectacular. Funny puns, interesting multiple-choice options during decisions, and all-out great characters and conversations make for one hell of a ride in the courtroom.
Even when things go wrong, they go great. Being a novice attorney, our protagonist has the occasional mishap along the way, and even when the judge has to set things straight, Ace Attorney Trilogy is good for a laugh.
Every once in a while, you are slow-walked to “epiphanies” and discoveries are spoon-fed to you. That said, the plot twists and story developments are as gripping as they are believable. While I'm not outright saying I agree with the decisions made, I can certainly understand a great deal of them — at least those of the less “unusual” characters… and there are plenty of those!
THE SOUND OF NOSTALGIA
In any game, the music, voice acting, sound effects, and more heavily contribute to the atmosphere and immersion of the experience, and while the Ace Attorney Trilogy isn’t about to get a Grammy for its dapper showtunes, the upbeat melodies from its Game Boy Advance days actually work surprisingly well to create a fun atmosphere for the courtroom. The lack of voice acting does feel a little stale during longer conversations, but the gripping writing usually makes up for it well enough. Considering Ace Attorney Trilogy’s humble origins, it’s no surprise that there is no voice acting here, but it would have really rounded off an otherwise great audio experience.
The Verdict: Good
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy and its very wordy title are a successful port to PC. There are some aspects in which it falls short of expectations — that is to say, the lack of text speed options for example, as well as the complete lack of voice acting — but the amazing storytelling, whacky murder plots, and overall hijinks all make it a must-play experience for fans. Just beware that if you’ve played the titles on any of the previous platforms, you already know who did it and why, as the plot is exactly the same as it was in the original games.