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

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 46 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 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
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. 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. Not exactly the dazzling reinvention we hoped for, but Apollo Justice more than holds his own. [May 2008, p.55]
  5. Even though it still relies on a lot of the tried and true mechanics of the Phoenix Right-titles, Apollo Justice manages to add enough new DS-related features to keep this package feeling fresh while adding a great and engaging storyline to the mix. This is the best offering so far for newcomers, and fans of the Phoenix Wright titles are going to appreciate the improvements to the formula.
  6. 70
    Despite these small problems, however, this is still essential playing for long-time fans, and for new entrants: buy this game, play it, and then get the others.
  7. Plead nolo contendere, Apollo. [Mar 2008, p.65]

See all 48 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 14
  2. Negative: 1 out of 14
  1. Sep 20, 2012
    At first, I missed playing with Phoenix. But I changed my mind, because the game is as enjoyable as the Phoenix Wright's ones. More memorable characters, the OST is perfect, the story is great too. I enjoyed this game a lot. Sometimes I play the entire saga again, and never get bored of it. Expand
  2. Feb 20, 2014
    I was a bit skeptical since you play as a new character (Apollo Justice) instead of Phoenix but the game turned out to be very, very good. I definitely recommend it if you played previous games. Expand
  3. May 25, 2013
    I have played through nearly every other Ace Attorney game, but Apollo Justice was special. It's true, you do not play as Phoenix Wright, but that does that not mean he isn't a factor in the game. The story is nothing short of masterfully crafted, and all of the characters are memorable and influential on your journey. My only problem with the game is the way saving works and the lack of text skipping. I hope to see a sequel to this great game some time in the future. Expand
  4. Dec 31, 2012
    I've heard rumors that this is one of the most hated of the series, mostly because it obviously lack the main character: Phoenix Wright. However, as a fan of the series, I pressed forward and I was honestly surprise to see an actual good "sequel" of the main series, with still its good character roster and still good cases to play (I heard the last case is full of plotholes, but seemed ok for me and I personally liked it as much as the others), although they don't reach the quality of either T&T or AT. The graphics in this game have been slightly improved also, animations have been made anew and, surprinsingly, still feels timeless and I hardly noticed the changes (in a good way). The game adds instead of the psychic locks the innate ability to see their reactions through a zooming sight, in which you'll attempt to discover what's wrong with them after certain statements. Except that, nothing really goes wrong...well at a certain point. Even if I liked it, some points of the story aren't totally explained, like where are most of the old characters? What happened to them? Phoenix seems like he's been abandoned, and they were all good friends! Phoenix alone is a great character in the game (finally not a clumsy man like the previous games, although excusable in the first game), and both Apollo and Trucy are a great pair in this game, while I didn't really enjoy your new rival Klavier. It's not on par with other games of the series but it is still a good adventure game, although seemed a bit shorter because of only having 4 cases. Nothing really goes bad in here, but fans will ask questions that probably won't be answered until a "new" Apollo game will be released, and non-fans will surely like the game despite the small flaws and everything. It's worth a good buy in my opinion, so give it a good try: you might find it more enjoyable than you'd think. Expand
  5. Apr 16, 2014
    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.

    I just didn't like it as much as the others. Not that anything in it is wrong, but it just doesn't work as well.

    I guess the main issue is the characters and unified story, but the gameplay is also a bit less good.

    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 story, it's really hard to explain, but I'd say that the characters, apart from Trucy Wright who is a really great sidekick and even better than Maya(although that's far from being hard), are usually not as fun. The drama is less strong, the fun is less strong, the thinking is pretty great but the story isn't as interesting emotionally, so I care less. Trucy herself is I think a character with a ton of potential, but isn't used as much as she could've been.

    The characters as a whole are good, but not as good. Prosecutor Gavin is no Fransizka von Karma, and certainly no Edgeworth or Godot. A good foe for sure, but not as memorable an over-the-top character as others have been, despite the fact that he's over-the-top in his own way. Ema Skye as an already rancid old woman despite being 25, the Gavinners and Lamiroir, the Kitaki yakuza family, yeah they're all good, but not as good, not as fun or deep, not as tragic or entertaining as a whole.

    Storywise, it's still damn good, but the game has a gimmick akin to Trials and Tribulations where all the stories come together in an overarching one.
    It's bad.
    It hurts the individual stories that become less fun or varied because they have to be tied to the overarching one, and it's not all that interesting or well-used for the general plot of the whole game. I really think this idea should be scrapped for most cases. It only worked in T&T because every individual story had characters that were intimately tied up to Maya's family or Phoenix' past(save for the MaskDeMasque story). Here, they try to recreate the same principle with Trucy Wright/Enigmar/Gramarye and Apollo Justice by telling the story of their families and pasts, but they only have one game for it. It doesn't feel as full, as deep or just as good.

    This really should've been a brand new take on the principle of an Ace Attorney, and it's not. It's a rehash with new characters which are given too much to do for a complex plot where not enough about themselves has been established yet.

    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).

    In the end I can't quite put the finger on why, I'd need to play all of them again back to back, but I remember that AJ was the one I was just not as fond of as I was about the others. Definitely not the one you want to start the series with, the original PW:AA on DS is still the best to get in the series and the best to learn of all the characters.
    Still an 8, because all the criticisms don't take away the fact that is is an amusing title like all its peers.
  6. Oct 27, 2013
    It's a perfectly fine game. But it does not compare to the original trilogy, it has a good story, great graphics and music, and memorable characters like the original trilogy, but personaly the original trilogy just does it a lot better. Expand

See all 14 User Reviews