The case of the video game is already known to the courtThe Chronicles of the Great Lawyer Ace. Are the prosecution and defense prepared?
"Ready, Your Honor!"
"Yes, Your Honor!"
Great! Let's first listen to what the responsible inspector has to say about what we are dealing with here.
That's probably my cue recentlyThe Great Ace Lawyerfinished and I would like to present it to you. Released in 2021 for Switch, Playstation 4 and PC, the game is a joint re-release of two Japan-exclusive 3DS games from 2015 and 2017 respectively. It only appeared on my radar after watching enthusiasticallyAce Attorney Trilogyhe caught up and wanted more.
And that's what I got.
Because it is?You slip into the role of the Japanese student Ryonosuke Naruhodo, who goes on a study trip to London, accidentally slips into the profession of criminal defense lawyer and solves murder cases in court with his assistant Susato Mikotoba. It's a homemade detective story about investigating crime scenes, interviewing witnesses and presenting evidence. The game is divided into ten episodes, in each of which the objective is to conduct an investigation and then duel the prosecutor in court to get the client's own acquittal. Of course, witnesses lie and you have to ask yourself why and what really happened. In the more complex cases towards the end of the adventure, new evidence comes to light in the courtroom, prompting a new investigation and another day of trial. The gameplay is intuitive, so I don't need to say anything about it. Unlike other adventures, there is only one way to solve it; So you can't miss anything as the story won't progress until all relevant things are done. It's possible to lose, but you can start over from the last save or the current scene for the full five tries.
But it would be a fallacy to assume linear gameplay behind it. Oh no, this series is packed with character development and twists and turns, so by the end of the review everything is very different than when it started. Accordingly, do not be afraid of spoilers in this text, because the game is unpredictable anyway. He attaches great importance to his story, the characters and above all: the dialogues. These are pretty well written and varied, with humor in all the right places, but mostly without sound and only available in English (or Japanese). Strictly speakingIs a lawyernone due to interactive puzzle elementsVisual Novel, but for a rough classification you can call it that. But stop! Don't run away just yet, at least read the next section.
Maybe you can already see it in the photos:The Great Ace Lawyertakes place in the past, specifically in the Victorian eraPeriod late 19th century. You are an ancestor of the well-known Phoenix Wright, protagonist of theAssistant lawyerseries, although fortunately references to the rest of the series are limited to a few nice references. has the historicalSurroundingsnow affect the game? Oh yeah! Witnesses are in historical trades, fingerprints do not yet exist, and in general cases are very often based on contemporary circumstances. Does that make it more complicated? Not really, it just expands the coverage. By the way, how the London gas supply worked will be reported as soon as it is relevant to the process. In addition, of course, the protagonists come from Japan and as a player you have to explain a lot to them. Of course, the game sometimes bends its rules when necessary, and there are color photos, for example.
In Victorian London, of course, there is one person who should not be missing from any crime fiction: the great detective Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Dr. Again: the great detectiveHerlock Sholmesalong with assistant Iris Wilson! Yes, here the translation team had to avoid an ambiguous copyright situation. In any case, Sholmes and his ten-year-old roommate play a central role. Initially eyed critically by Susato and Ryonosuke, a friendship quickly develops and a flat share at 221b Baker Street. Here, too, connoisseurs can discover many allusions to the stories of Arthur Conan Doyle, but, as the example of Iris already shows, they are notThe Great Ace Lawyersomething new and unique from the material and also from the personality of Sholmes. Eccentric and adventurous, but also clumsy, Sholmes would be lost without his companions. This is the closest I've read to how Sherlock Holmes was portrayed in the 1984 British TV series. I didn't know that myself, but it must have been a big hit in Japan at the time, and some characters like Pop Windibank took it straight from him.
Still, Sholmes is funny. One of the new ones is also about Sholmes.game features: „The Great Show of Logic and Reasoning von Herlock Sholmes“. (And yes, puns on "Great' are the rules of this game). During the investigative stages, Sholmes often forms theories about the case based on details about people's surroundings and clothing. However, unlike the original, these theories are seldom correct and must be corrected by Ryonosuke. The special thing about these sections is their staging, because Sholmes and Ryonosuke race together in fast movements through the 3D environments, which is why the insert also "Dance of Deduction" called. However, the solution is never difficult, because the correct clue can always be found nearby and discovered by rotating the camera. The same applies to the other novelty, the testimony of several witnesses at the same time. This also adds variety to the staging, as people on the witness stand may react to each other, yell at or hug each other, but if they have something to add to someone else's testimony, they introduce themselves with a permanent o-tone so they don't miss anything.
Well, defender? What do you have to say about this?
The inspector gives me a direct template!The Great Ace Lawyeractually shines through yourspresentationand staging. Text comes to life with just a few animations, so there's always something happening on screen and you never miss a beat of the soundtrack. The 3D models are pretty to look at, their movements are fluid, the backgrounds are detailed and there are even animated cutscenes and drawn images, although they are a bit unevenly distributed throughout the adventure.
Of course, this also contributes to the staging.Musica. It captures the atmosphere perfectly and even works when it suddenly stops and starts again after a few text boxes. Between us, the entire series has one of the most memorable video game soundtracks of all time, combining gameplay and music, and that's where it begins.The Great Ace Lawyereven one with its orchestral sounds. This is of course particularly iconic."Objection!" themebut my favorite piece isthis one here.
As I said, the music andgame guideclosely intertwined. If I find a discrepancy between testimony and evidence, let me know."objection!' and then the music stops and a new tune comes in, it's incredibly satisfying. The back and forth between prosecution and defense culminates in each episode as both believe in their position and vie for the judge's goodwill. The feeling is hard to describe, but it's worth it. The investigation phases, on the other hand, remain in placeThe Great Ace Lawyera bit pale, only towards the end of the first game you can really move freely. We found very little evidence ourselves, but we received it from the prosecution during the trial. Luckily, the dance routines with Sholmes make up for it.
The inspector has already said a few words about our master detective, but of course the game has much more than him.charactersOffer. They all have their very special characteristics, which are often reflected in the design and form an unmistakable ensemble. Added to this is the laborious translation, which gives most people appropriate linguistic features, such as an Irish dialect. This is where a javelin for English localization needs to be broken using your vocabulary and creativity. My English isn't perfect, I had to look up some Old English or Scots terms, but I still had a lot of fun with the lyrics. Too bad there is no German translation, but I can imagine that it will be difficult to keep up.
Almost every character has a backstory that isn't oneexposure dumpingit is narrated but immersively tangled in current crime. The great art of the game is using the charactersShow Grayscale. People act out of fear, arrogance, or because they feel good, but they are still human. So I can't spontaneously think of one person I like all the time; everyone has their quirks, sometimes they are in a bad mood or they lie. But that's also part of it, the characters are developed. The best example is the protagonist Ryonosuke Naruhodo. To emphasize a point during the negotiation, occasionally pat the table with both hands. At first, however, he feels so insecure in his role that only a meager round of applause erupts, followed by an anxious glance left and right at his hands to see if they fall on the table. As the game progresses, you gain more and more experience, so the serve will hold its ground and face forward, until eventually the animation fades completely. The intertwining of staging and characterization is also evident here.
At this point a little interjectionmental stateof the game, which constantly oscillates between tragedy and comedy. The game isn't afraid to use themes of suicide, exclusion, revenge and of course death as central points in its narrative. At the same time, all the characters are portrayed a bit crazy, for example wearing a live swan as an ornament on their hat or throughoutfish and chipsgo deep inside you The break between the two levels can be stark, but somehow it managesThe Great Ace Lawyerthat I buy that as authenticity and that both sides get along emotionally. So don't be intimidated by a character's "costume" because there's always more to it than that.
And then there's theaction. While the game is episodic, all episodes are also part of Ryonosuke's character development and the larger, overarching story they more or less drive at times. This means that the puzzles are really introduced at the beginning, that they only find their solution at the end. In between, however, many subplots and subplots unfold, so that the events always remain exciting. Originally there were two games in Japan,TGAA: AdventurejTGAA 2: Solve, but it is wise to take them into accountchroniclesmerge because they act as direct sequels and fully play to their strengths in unity. You don't have to imagine the plot as complex and with pompous concepts, but it remains down-to-earth and simply well told. The ending of the second game in particular reverses some of what you experienced in the first game. Because not only do they tell you about it, but you played it yourself, use itThe Great Ace Lawyeralso its advantage as an interactive medium. If you are looking for a well-written, engaging story, this masterpiece of storytelling comes highly recommended.
Silence in the courtroom! Keep your enthusiasm in check! I am now asking for the prosecutor's guilty plea.
There must be a whilecriticism. If you look around the internet you will find thisThe Great Ace LawyerWidely acclaimed as the "masterpiece" and "victorious return" of inventor Shu Takumi. Forgive my inaccuracy when I say this is crazy nonsense! A minimum of three reservations must be made.
"At the beginning, riddles are introduced that only find their solution at the end," said the defense. How true, how true The fact that there are maybe 80 hours in between, in which the story sometimes wanders aimlessly and is laboriously kept alive by fountain pens, was probably not worth mentioning. The first game in particular, with the first five episodes, is usually only justAttitudesecond. You've just arrived in London, the credits are already running out and there are a thousand unanswered questions. Then again, the first case has been stretched so far to accommodate three more unexpected twists that it almost hurts. And what is all this for? To spend more time with Ryonosuke's mentor figure, who then disappears as the second episode's murder victim anyway. Well it was worth it!rhythmis an undeniable problemThe Great Ace Lawyer, some twists just wouldn't have been necessary. That improves noticeably in the second half, but the saying "hard in the first half of the game, then it gets better" breaks the neck of every recommendation.
The fact that letters tend to wander, choke out information andsuperfluous text fieldsthey were not removed consistently enough. "Prosecutor, what do you mean by that?" - "(If it really is what I think it is... Oh no! It can't be! That would change the whole case! Could it really be?)" - "Prosecutor, start talking!" Zack, five more filled text fields! It gets particularly bad when cross-examination doesn't make it clear which statement to attack in order to proceed, or (even better)aStatements must be attacked before the witness remembers anything crucial. The fact that an attempt was made to fill these gaps with amusing background information does not help matters. the comparison withAce Attorney Trilogyunfortunately it comes to mind because it originally came out on the Gameboy Advance and I think got to the point much quicker due to the limited space for text on the cartridge. In this respect, too, the development team has happily returned to old virtues with the second game.
In conclusion, the game can be blamed in good conscience for being strong in the original trilogy.copied. The entire constellation of the main characters can be transferred almost 1:1, many of the animations were simply adapted from new 3D characters and even in the game there are features such as presenting evidence during the investigation phase that you hardly ever need. and only there because they have always been there, whether or not you have any meaningful use for them. The game draws too much from its roots and adds almost nothing new to its core gameplay. As mentioned above, the added features are more wishful thinking than real mysteries.
The prosecution whitewashes this building, and then breaking down formulas and setting expectations has always been a strength of the Ace Attorney series. Of course, all cases, especially the trial, are basically the same, so you might wonder where all the tension is coming from when you imagine that all the accused will end up being acquitted. The answer is that each case changes crucial details and therefore deviates from the established paths. When the autopsy report suddenly becomes invalid, when evidence suddenly has to be hidden, when the prosecutor turns out to be a suspect, it creates disagreements and excitement. That's exactly how it worksThe Great Ace Lawyer: All processes end differently, the game features are constantly changing and the constellation of characters turns the well-known formula into something new. Susato is a completely different character from Maya, and Ryonosuke isn't a Phoenix either, despite their relationship.
Thank you for your execution.I will now announce the verdict. The Chronicles of the Great Lawyer Aceseems to have a lot to offer. Especially when it comes to characters, setting and plot, few games can match it. As is typical for the genre, the focus is less on the gameplay, but a lot has been thought about and useful new features have been developed. However, especially in the first part of the adventure, some weaknesses in speed cannot be denied. It is therefore advisable for newcomers to take a look at the firstAce Attorney Trilogyto throw, whose gameplay is more condensed and has similar strengths as its predecessor. If you already know what you're getting yourself into, you can do thishereaccess without hesitation.
That's how I explain the gameThe Great Ace LawyerPro …
The negotiation is closed. Appeals can only be made before a higher authority, own opinions and gaming experiences are welcome. Labels come inOlynsjRaichu-chan.
Author of the photo:The Chronicles of the Great Lawyer AcejAce Attorney Trilogy(Jeweils Switch-Version)