Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 48 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 93 Ratings

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  • Summary: This is the fourth game in the series and the first developed specifically for Nintendo DS and sees a change of direction for the story line with the introduction of new defense attorney Apollo Justice and a host of new characters. Players star as rookie defense attorney Apollo Justice as heThis is the fourth game in the series and the first developed specifically for Nintendo DS and sees a change of direction for the story line with the introduction of new defense attorney Apollo Justice and a host of new characters. Players star as rookie defense attorney Apollo Justice as he visits crime scenes, questions key witnesses and collects vital evidence before stepping into the courtroom to prove his clients' innocence. Facing Apollo across the courtroom is the highly talented and flamboyant prosecutor Klavier Gavin who, in addition to being a legal genius, is also lead singer with Gavinners, a highly successful rock band with a string of hits to their name. He may be young and inexperienced but Apollo's confident manner and passion, coupled with his unique ability to uncover witnesses' lies by studying their body language, will prove invaluable assets in the courtroom as he pleads the case for the defense. Thankfully, Apollo is not alone and is aided both in and out of the courtroom by his assistant Trucy, a mysterious female magician. Apollo also receives invaluable advice from his mentor the ultra-cool Kristoph Gavin, elder brother of Klavier, whose perfect logic and natural instincts have won him numerous cases and the respect of his colleagues. [Capcom] Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 48
  2. Negative: 0 out of 48
  1. Despite fears that a new stable of characters would prove less interesting than the established cast, Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney manages to hold up to its predecessors in nearly every way.
  2. Pelit (Finland)
    Quotation forthcoming. [June 2008]
  3. 83
    Apollo Justice surprised us. This may just be yet another of Capcom’s infamous rehashes, but it’s so much more enjoyable than most that it’s extremely hard to ignore.
  4. Games Master UK
    Not the leap in features we'd hoped for, but a fantastic debut for Justice nontheless. [May 2008, p.72]
  5. It's filled to the brim with brilliant ideas, and then barely uses them.
  6. Fans of the previous Ace Attorney games will appreciate the new touch-screen mechanics and improved presentation, but these changes don't do much to spice up the series' often slow and tedious pacing.
  7. Play Magazine
    Plead nolo contendere, Apollo. [Mar 2008, p.65]

See all 48 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 25
  2. Negative: 3 out of 25
  1. Mar 29, 2015
    Wieder so ein Spiel , dass meinen Tag beeinflussen konnte ... Die neuen Charaktere waren mal wieder grandios , und ich freute mich auch , dassWieder so ein Spiel , dass meinen Tag beeinflussen konnte ... Die neuen Charaktere waren mal wieder grandios , und ich freute mich auch , dass Ema Skye wieder dabei war ^-^ Damon Gant aber wird wohl nie wieder kommen *Seufz* Die Story konnte einen wie ich fand , noch mehr fesseln , als die der zwei Teile davor , da einfach viele neue Personen hinzukamen und alles wie neu vorkam ! Capcom hats halt drauf ! ;) Expand
  2. Ady
    Mar 12, 2008
    Great game, Great storyline what more is there to say? GET IT!
  3. Aug 17, 2014
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. My expectations for this game weren't too high. I expected it to feel like any other Ace Attorney gane, and be a decent entry. I also have seen the scores on metacritic before playing, and now, after playing it, i'm shocked that the scores of AA1, JFA, and T&T are so much higher than Apollo. In short, this is my absolute favorite Ace Attorney game.

    I'll begin with the characters. I like Apollo Justice more than I djd Phoenix. He was more relatable: a quirky, nervous guy who goes through crap in the first few chapters. During his very first trial, he had to put his boss in jail, then was unemployed. After his first trail, he found out that Phoenix, his only chance at employment, made him present forged evidence.
    Trucy, on the other hand feels like Maya or young Ema Skye did, with one key difference:she's naive and says things without thinking to often dangerous people. When this happens, Apollo feels embarrassed by her, which also reflected how I felt when Trucy did said things.
    Speaking of Ema, she's back, as the detective. i really liked her in Rise from the Ashes, and do here, as long as she's not acting salty, as in this game, she's often a grump when you first talk to her.
    Phoenix still retained his hunger to bring justice like in the original trilogy, but this time, he is much more calm and collected. So much so that he almost feels like a different person. Thankfully, He regains his loud mouth and erect finger (no, not that finger) in dual destinies.
    Kristoph Gavin is extremely surpising. Before playing, I thought he was a goodhearted leader who killed someone without knowing. The opposite happened.
    Klavier Gavin is the first prosecutor who seeks the truth in their debut, not just victory. Personally, I was not a fan of this. The antagonist didn't feel like an enemy.

    Now, onward to the cases.
    Turnabout Trump is the ultimate first case. The witness is NOT the killer for once, and this case most likely took everyone by surprise. It was an amazing way to kick off the game.
    Turnabout Corner is a solid case. It felt like any other. It did a goid job of forming the characters
    Turnabout Serenade had some good twists, and was slightly better than solid.
    Turnabout Succession is amazing. It's courtoom action isn't all that great, but the investigations are, because all the plot twists are found out there, as well as the aftermath. You also play as Phoenix during his last trial, but the GBA bacgrounds conflicting with the DS graphics Klavier sort of bugged me. After this case, I found a few plot holes in Turnabout Trump that were never filled, but they were minor.
    I loved how almost all cases were connected. Corner wasn't, but it's more realistic. Too many coincidences turn my suspension of belief off. This game also has a moral delima, like JFA. The delima regards a broken justice system, and using unconventional methods to prove the truth.
    The ending is extremely satisfying. You find out that Phoenix set up the jurist system and knew from the beginning that Kristoph was the killer, and this was the only way to bring justice. Lamoir, a blind singer who suffers from amnesia, is revealed to be Trucy's mother, who "died" in accident. She also was with another man before Zak, who was Apollo's dad. This means he and Trucy are half-sibilings. A good plot twist is one that is impossible to guess, in my opinion.

    Finally, the gameplay. They removed the ability to present profiles. Oh well, no big deal. When you investigate as phoenix, you get to break the magical psyche locks again, and still a good amount kf times for one part. Ema's forensics and other things gave you little gimmicks to play with, but they're all case specific, which is fine, because it'd probably get annoying if you did them in every case. You can also examine evidence as 3D models, just like in Rise from the Ashes.
    And now, the main gimmick of this game: Apollo's bracelet. I really enjoyed it. Thankfully, you could only use it when you had to. Some nervous habits were easy to find, some difficult, and some awesome, like Kristoph's scar becoming a skull. I'd also like to say this game's music and graphics trump the previous titles'.

    In summary, I'm giving this game a 10/10 for improved graphics and sound, likeable and interesting characters, great new gameplay features that aren't oversused, and an excellent story with plot twists that are sure to shock you.
  4. May 4, 2015
    Now I can reasonably understand why people prefer the initial trilogy to this game and I am one of those people. However, this does not stopNow I can reasonably understand why people prefer the initial trilogy to this game and I am one of those people. However, this does not stop Apollo Justice from being a very good game. Sure the 2nd and 3rd case drag on a bit; however, the final case is one of my favourite cases in the entire series. I still recommend this game for any Ace Attorney fan, don't skip it. Expand
  5. Aug 21, 2016
    To anyone who says Apollo justice is a bad game i say this to you:

    OBJECTION! This is a fantastic game, it may not be as good as the main
    To anyone who says Apollo justice is a bad game i say this to you:

    OBJECTION! This is a fantastic game, it may not be as good as the main Phoenix Wright trilogy, but this game is far from being the worst of the Ace Attorney series (Looking at you Layton).

    STORY: In this game you take control of Phoe-...Oh wait that's Wright! (Sorry for that pun) In this game Phoenix actually lost his attorney's badge after a trial 7 year ago after Trials and Tribulations, now he's known as Phoenix Wright: Ace Piano Player even though he sucks at playing piano, but he's pretty good in poker tho...moving on! With Phoenix out of the picture as the main attorney what did Capcom do to have a new- Ok you know what just can just look at the name and cover of the game and you'll see what the did, now we're in control of Apollo Justice, Rookie attorney that is just beginning his career and he'll need to plough through 4 cases to make a name for himself.

    A lot of people feel the need to remind us how AWFUL! it is to play an Ace Attorney game without Phoenix, because clearly he's all that matters when it comes to quality and if he's not there then the game is not good. Personally i feel that's just stupid, Apollo may not be the bad*** that Phoenix is, but he still is a pretty likable character that does his job very well. Same goes for new character, Trucy Wright, she's a magician and a very cute and charming one at that. New rival prosecutor, Klavier, is also an awesome character and he remind me a lot of Edgeworth, since he just wants to discover the truth, plus he's a rockstar and that's always nice. And also, the villain of this game is gotta be one of the best and most creative in the series, people who have finished the game can attest to that. Finally from the main cast we have returning Ema Skye, who basically confirms that the fifth case of the first game is cannon which is a huge **** up because that means that Edgeworth didn't leave after Turnabout Memories, which means that the plotpoint in Justice for All was total bull****, but I digress, Ema is just as likable as before and now she's actually a detective, replacing Gumshoe. Some people don't really like the characters of each case, but aside from Spark Brushel and Wesley Stickler the rest are pretty fun to interact with, yes even Wocky Kitaki, i just don't see why people say he's such an annoying character, I really didn't see the problem.

    PRESENTATION: One of the first things you'll notice right of the bat is the graphics. The original trilogy was originally built for the GBA and then ported to the DS, but this game is built specifically for the DS from the ground up and it definitely shows, more fluid animations, more detailed characters and backgrounds and better sound quality. At first the color pallet for the courtroom wasn't eye catching for me, but eventually i grew to enjoy it. The character designs are on-spot like usual and the game is overall very pretty. But of course an Ace Attorney game is not an Ace Attorney game without AMAZING music and this is certainly no exception, the new pursuit theme, Overtaken, has become my second favorite pursuit theme of any Ace Attorney game (second to Cornered of course), the Objection theme does a great job of keeping the tension and both the instrument and style variety is through the roof. If there's one thing that everyone agrees on is that this game looks and sound fantastic.

    GAMEPLAY: If you want a detailed explanation of how the game works overall then go read my previus Ace Attorney reviews and get that knowledge there because I don't want to repeat myself...ok, you did? perfect, now let's continue to see the new stuff. From Justice for All onward Phoenix always had his magatama item to know if someone is hiding a secret, and while you do use the magatama in a certain place in the game, this time around we get Apollo's bracelet, this thing is very weird, but awesome at the same time, you can only use it in the courtroom segments in very specific parts which does hinder its usefulness, but when you do use it the world becomes psychedelic and Apollo will perceive the witness testimony, focus and zoom in on the person who is testifying, what do you do next? To detect if someone is lying you have to search his "twitch", basically when someone is lying they have unconscious reactions and that reaction is what you ar looking for. You can try time and time again until you get it right so it's not annoying to do, but it's tricky to find. Aside from that every case has a specific gimmick to them, i won't explain them all since they're not a main part of the overall game, but they're pretty fun to mess around with.

    Overall Apollo Justice is a very underrated game in my eyes. Sure it has some plot holes here and there, but if that didn't destroy Justice for All of Trials and tribulations then why Apollo gets that treatment?

    I'll give an 8/10.
  6. May 18, 2015
    Apollo Justice...is hard to criticize properly.

    Let me say first off that it's still the same grandly successful type of story, characters,
    Apollo Justice...is hard to criticize properly.

    Let me say first off that it's still the same grandly successful type of story, characters, and gameplay that makes this series great. Its writing, thinking demand and general quality as a game is still very high up and it's still quite an enjoyable game in the series.

    Gameplay first: every AA game tries to have its own little gimmicky feature, like the Magatama for JFA onwards, Miles Edgeworth Investigations has the Logic feature, and so on.

    Apollo's gimmick is his bracelet that makes you zoom in on witnesses and see...something.
    I'll admit right ahead that I'm bad at noticing visual things, so maybe it's unfair criticism, but this gameplay style is just sh*tty. The zoom is so awfully close to people that it's painful to see anything, you can only see a tiny part of them, so you have to recheck again and again and again and again until you've found the one detail...which I usually never found! I always had to ask the internet for it. And sometimes the details are just about ridiculous, for example you're supposed to find a guy having armpit sweat during one part of his statement! Yes, just during that one part, it disappears after, so you have to know to look at the armpit and only the armpit since the zoom is so close-up, find that one magical moment where the sweat appears and point to it...

    The gimmick is just awful and nowhere near as good as the Magatama or any other such gimmicks from the series. Rest of the gameplay is just not as fun as the rest too. Nothing hideous, but just not as fun. The thinking and critical skills required are still good too, though.

    As for the cases:

    Case 1: Boring. Never got my interest due to a very twisted logic which required a lot of thinking it over again and again to understand and accept it. I guess it's my bad for being stupid, but if I have to re-read the whole case twice to understand what was going on, considering that I never needed to re-read anything in any AA game ever before, it may not just be me. This case is confusing and fails to grab my interest.

    Case 2: the defendant may be a complete moron, but the majority of the case is ok. This is the first case where Trucy Wright is introduced in depth and I find her to be possibly the best sidekick the series has provided yet. AJ's prosecutor is also introduced here and he rocks, in every sense of the term. While no Godot or Edgeworth, he's not that far off from a Franziska von Karma, and he manages to be a suitable character besides his prosecutor role later on in the game. So I mainly like this case for being clear and introducing these two.

    Except for that, while it has nice elements, it's overall not very fun.

    Case 3: Eeeeeergh. Easily one of the worst cases ever. The very logic in it is so ridiculously convoluted and stupid(and obvious) that you just want to leave the game there. The defendant(s) suck, the villain sucks, the logic sucks, everything sucks. I'm supposed to get emotionally attached to Lamiroir, well if this game wasn't technically limited by the DS maybe this could've happened, but it was limited and I'm not attached. In its entirety the case is sleep-inducing and the whole concert + death poetry gimmick feels like a design nightmare. At least finding out what really happened is fun, so the gameplay holds up very well, but while playing and the plot twists are fine, everything else fails in this case.

    Case 4: A joyous mess I suppose, but extremely little value in this case is given to the villain. It honestly falls short at every turn when it comes to building up the Big Bad Guy. When the final reveal feels like another paper has been completed and the credits roll with you sighing "finally, it's done with", well, I can't really call that in any way successful. While it has a very interesting concept with time travel and exploring past and present to put the clues together, and it gives a massive backstory on the characters, it feels anticlimactic and can't build up the villain at all. Its gameplay is good, that's the saving grace, but it falls very short when compared with Edgeworth/Von Karma, the Matt Engarde reveal, or the absolutely amazing Bridge to the Turnabout from the previous trilogy.

    With the cases done, I'll just quickly say this: except for Trucy having more potential than Maya and Ema Skye vs a very overdone Gumshoe, every character in this game feels inferior to its former equivalent.
    Apollo VS Phoenix(who keeps overshadowing him in this game), Gavin VS Godot, here defendants VS previous defendants, here villains VS previous villains, it's all less fun, less tragic, less crazy, less everything.

    With that said, the OST is particularly good, and that's saying a ton considering that every AA game has a good soundtrack(except maybe Investigations is a tiny bit less good).

    It won't save this game from being the worst Ace Attoreny, but it helps making it acceptable. I'd still highly recommend any AA over this one.
  7. PW
    Feb 23, 2008
    This game is literally more of the same. There is literally one new feature: one of the most obnoxious minigames ever to disgrace gaming. The This game is literally more of the same. There is literally one new feature: one of the most obnoxious minigames ever to disgrace gaming. The concept is that you have to discover some hidden animation. The segment is timed, of course, something that's inexcusable for a game of this genre. Other than that, if you've played the original DS Phoenix Wright, you've played this game. There's nothing new. Sadly, this means that the pointless and worthless penalty system is back, meaning that you get to re-page through 15 minutes of text if you fail to guess what the writers were thinking. You can work around that by compulsively saving, but you shouldn't have to - there should be no penalty system in the first place. Expand

See all 25 User Reviews

Awards & Rankings

#9 Most Discussed DS Game of 2008
#91 Most Shared DS Game of 2008