Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice Image
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Generally favorable reviews - based on 65 Critic Reviews What's this?

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8.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 121 Ratings

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  • Summary: This narrative adventure stars beloved defense attorneys Phoenix Wright and Apollo Justice and sees the return of many familiar faces alongside some exciting new additions. Filled with puzzling cases to solve, the new game also brings popular investigative techniques from previousThis narrative adventure stars beloved defense attorneys Phoenix Wright and Apollo Justice and sees the return of many familiar faces alongside some exciting new additions. Filled with puzzling cases to solve, the new game also brings popular investigative techniques from previous installments, along with brand new mechanics such as the Divination Séance. Spirit of Justice sees Phoenix in a brand new location: a courtroom situated in the Kingdom of Khura'in, origin of the Kurain Channeling Technique, where mysterious séance trials decide the fate of all defendants. Meanwhile, defense attorney Apollo Justice faces his own challenges holding down the fort at the Wright Anything Agency, as he takes on a case that will have explosive implications. Both our heroes are joined by a host of returning friends and adversaries in their fight to bring about justice. [Nintendo.com] Expand

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice Announcement Trailer
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 65
  2. Negative: 0 out of 65
  1. Mar 22, 2019
    100
    It’s hard to find much fault with Spirit of Justice. Dramatically improving upon its predecessors’ storytelling and varying the familiar gameplay elements, this game gives the trilogy – and series, for now – a more-than-polished conclusion that engages the brain as well as the heart.
  2. Sep 8, 2016
    90
    While Ace Attorney has had its ups and downs since the original trilogy came to a close, Spirit of Justice amounts to the fresh start Phoenix Wright needed to break away from his past. A great setting, fantastic mysteries, memorable characters, and a consistent, thoughtful theme make this a must-play for anyone interested in Ace Attorney's anime-infused take on Law & Order.
  3. Oct 11, 2016
    85
    Despite being a game whose potential makes it frustrating considering how little is actually accomplished, Spirit of Justice still is the best among the most recent games in the series.
  4. Sep 8, 2016
    80
    Spirit of Justice strikes right to the core of what makes Ace Attorney games great: bold, dramatic narrative, a ridiculous sense of humour, and outstanding writing. The first truly superb AA game in years.
  5. Sep 26, 2016
    80
    Spirit of Justice is a must-play for fans of Phoenix Wright’s continuing adventures. Though some minor mechanical quibbles remain, this is, by far, the most intuitive and visually engaging entry in the series. The amount of innovation and genuine humor found throughout paint a rosy picture for the future of the franchise and make Spirit of Justice the freshest courtroom since the first.
  6. Sep 9, 2016
    80
    Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice is sure to please fans with its engaging story and sharp humor, but the gameplay formula is starting to show its age.
  7. Sep 8, 2016
    65
    There’s enough snappy dialogue and silliness in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice to satisfy long-term series fans, and the conventional courtroom sequences still feel rewarding when you get on a roll and a witness starts to unravel. But the heavy-handed mysticism of its bloated middle act and the general lack of innovation makes for a less than essential entry in the Phoenix Wright saga on the whole.

See all 66 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 25
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 25
  3. Negative: 1 out of 25
  1. Sep 14, 2016
    10
    I finished the game today, beating all the cases but the DLC one, and I have to say... This game is absolutely amazing. I see people complainI finished the game today, beating all the cases but the DLC one, and I have to say... This game is absolutely amazing. I see people complain that it doesn't innovate much, that it is almost the same old formula as the first Ace Attorney, but, honestly, is that a bad thing? Because I think it isn't! I just want more of the same with different stories and a few innovative additions, that's it! If something works, why does it have to change?

    About the game, it just never disappoints. The first case is cool, as it is a very deep case for being the first. It introduces the amazing mechanic of the Divination Séances, in which you witness the victim's final memories, and the Defense Culpability Act, which creates a lot of tension because it means that if your client is declared guilty, so is the one that defends it and he will receive the same penalty. The guitar witness was a bit annoying in this case, though, because he spoke extremely slowly sometimes.

    The second case is fantastic, with a very entertaining investigation part due to the troubles Apollo and Athena face during it. The trial and the way the victim died are also excellent, a very original plot, with a lot of magic!

    And in the third case we at last get to see Mystic Maya! The reunion between her and Phoenix was a great moment. And the plot of the case is once again very very good, extremely mystic and very well set in the Kingdom of Khura-in.

    The fourth case is in my opinion the worst case in this game. It's a bit odd and unrelated to the rest of the game. That doesn't mean it's boring, though, I liked it, Athena deserved her moment of glory, and the appearance of Simon Blackquill is good. Besides, the witness Uendo Toneido is extremely hilarious. It still feels too apart from the rest of the game, though.

    And well, the fifth case is absolutely amazing. I don't want to give spoilers, just tell you that the first trial day is unforgettable due to the circumstances that surround it. And well I was very surprised to have it focused on Apollo. I actually think that Apollo was a quite dull character in his own game, with almost no charisma, but Dual Destinies and mostly the last case of this game take us to know him a lot better and like him a lot more.

    I want to highlight just 2 more things, the first one is the development of the character of Rayfa. She becomes a very profound character despite being very young, for me she is one of the greatest characters ever the saga has given us. And the second one is the characters' names. Khu-rainese people have so clever names! For example, your first client is named Ahlbi Ur'gaid, which comes from "I'll be your guide". Heck, even Minister Inga's full name, Inga Karkhuul Haw'kohd Dis'nahm Bi'ahni Lawga Ormo Pohmpus Da'nit Ar'edi Iz Khura'in III, has a meaning! (How could this name be any longer or more pompous than it already is?")

    All in all, this game is a must-play for fans of the series, in my opinion much better and memorable than Dual Destinies. Perhaps not the best game to get started in the saga, though, but well, it's perfectly playable and enjoyable even if you haven't played the others (c'mon, play them, they are not hard to get!)
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  2. Aug 20, 2018
    10
    If you do not like Visual Novels, you will not like this game. Period.

    That being said, this game sets the bar incredibly high for the
    If you do not like Visual Novels, you will not like this game. Period.

    That being said, this game sets the bar incredibly high for the Visual Novel medium in the English speaking world, a bar which was already hard to match considering the previous quality of the series. Gyakuten Saiban 6, known as Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice somehow manages to continue the high standards of writing that the previous 5 titles in the main line series had managed, and excel in in the presentation of the narrative.

    The music is superb. The game is full of contextual clues and foreshadowing for plot points that are sprinkled all over the narrative. For the first time in the series, the game has clues that the in-game characters do not point out, but you as the player can find and make a mental note of, which can provide clues for future plot progression and plot twists. Even the English title of this game has a double meaning. This title would seem to the first time player to play off the mysticism aspect of the new setting, however the title also represents Apollo Justice himself, as he grows and finally surpasses Phoenix Wright.

    The 3d engine this title runs is a reworked Dual Destines one, and is far more optimized for this game. This allows for full in engine cutscenes using the in game models. They look fine for the most part. It is a 3ds game, so don't expect anything too realistic looking.

    The complaints for this title are fairly minor. Case 4 is somewhat weak and there are less animated cutscenes than in the previous 3ds title. That's really it honestly.

    The only thing I can say to people looking to jump into this game is that this game, unlike Dual Destinies does rely on the player having some prior knowledge of the previous games. Jumping into the Phoenix Wright series blind with this title is not recommended.
    Expand
  3. Sep 17, 2016
    10
    "The greatest turnabout in series history"

    Pros: Improved reanimated visuals Fantastic Story Good Music Returning Characters Cons:
    "The greatest turnabout in series history"

    Pros:
    Improved reanimated visuals
    Fantastic Story
    Good Music
    Returning Characters

    Cons:
    Case 4 is crap
    Expand
  4. Apr 10, 2018
    9
    Definitely one of my favourite Ace Attorney games. The characters are memorable, and the game has a great script. The game can actually getDefinitely one of my favourite Ace Attorney games. The characters are memorable, and the game has a great script. The game can actually get quite challenging in its puzzles. Gameplay-wise, the only new thing is a feature where you look for inconsistencies in the memories of victims. This doesn't add much, but I was fine with that. The spiritual themes can get overwhelming at times, and it's more of the same in terms of gameplay, bit it's still recommended highly. Expand
  5. Sep 19, 2016
    9
    Case 1:great intro weak story, best witness ever
    case2: great case ,predictable killer
    case3 :one of the best cases case:4 a mediocre
    Case 1:great intro weak story, best witness ever
    case2: great case ,predictable killer
    case3 :one of the best cases
    case:4 a mediocre filler
    case5: the best final case yet
    OST:exellent
    graphics: really good animations
    Expand
  6. May 19, 2019
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It has its flaws but overal this was a great experience. Also many old characters make a return in this game, aldo I wish they added gumshoe. The adding of the divince seance ads new depth to the game. It requires you to relive the final moments of the victim and point out inconsistencies. I found it quite dificult but liked it. The game focuses a lot on Apollo Justice but unfortunately doesn't finish up its story arc, which I wish they did. This is the main negative for me. The other one is the pricetag of the dlc, which is way to much for its contents. I do hope the next game does something about this. The game is the longest in its series so overal I didn;t mind it that much. I also enjoyed the story. Expand
  7. Nov 14, 2018
    4
    As a long Ace Attorney fan, I think this is the vote I'd give for this game. A not full 5.
    Let's start witht he basis:
    1) Gameplay: It's
    As a long Ace Attorney fan, I think this is the vote I'd give for this game. A not full 5.
    Let's start witht he basis:
    1) Gameplay: It's overall ok. It's good to see a comeback of some features from the old 4 games like the full examination of an area, the usage of cameras, Ema's forensic abilities, etc. I also liked the divination seance (as gameplay), so there is a somewhat level of challenge.
    But
    Except for the cross-examination and the divination seance, the rest of the old/new features don't have any kind of penalities, just like in Dual Destinies. Why doesn't the Mood Matrix have penalties? Why doesn't the magatama have penalties? Why does the bracelet a Magatama 2.0, with no real purpose in terms of challenge at all? Why doesn't the Thought Route have penalties like the Logic in AA Investigation series?

    Bonus Magatama: between the other "powers", this is probably the most present in the game. And still, its challenging level is zero. In Trials & Tribulations, when you investigate, you find more than 1 person to have red psychelocks, and before to unlock them you're forced to find new clues elsewhere.
    In Spirit of Justice everything is guided: You see someone with psychelocks, you're just ready to unlock them. This isn't how features like magatama, mood matrix, bracelet, etc... should work in a game where the player's logic is needed.

    2)
    Multimedia: This is probably what saves the game more. Graphically there is a big improvement from Dual Destinies, and the music is overall in the standards of the other Ace Attorney music.
    My only critic point is how they used the motion capture. Each case has some parts where a character uses them. Unfortunately you notice the quality drops because they look unfitting with the models and the characters. The worst case scenario is during the case 5, in a particular moment a certain character acts like a child because of how unwell they used this feature in the game.
    Plus, on 3DS the framerate drops to 30fps or less.

    3)
    Story: It's a mess just like Dual Destinies.
    Again, they used the main characters and tried to connect them somehow, even if the possibilities that that would happen are less than zero. In short, I'm talking about retcons. And unfortunately some characters are victims of this in the game. The presence itself of a country like Khura'In is interesting IF it was placed with other purposes, like, for example, a game where Phoenix is the only character playable, and characters like Apollo, Athena, Trucy, etc weren't connected with the game at all, because they don't have to. But, in this case, Khura'In has just ruin any expectation in a bad way.
    And I'm not talking about the characterization of the people in Khura'In, but the motive Khura'In is present in the game. Just like the motive Maya is in the game. This motive is weak and not even explained in the game. Capcom released a "prologue" animated trailer of about 10 minutes where shows why Phoenix traveled in Khura'In, which is because Maya dropped the phone during an attack of a "rebel". But in the game, that video isn't canon. So we don't even have a good start of the game.
    Speaking of rebels, I find all this very annoying. Let me explain why.
    It's true Ace Attorney isn't meant to be realistic. The law itself in the series is a joke, it's meant to be as simple as possible so that could be understandable for the player.
    But I noticed in the last Ace Attorney games they tend to exaggerate all their topics.
    In the previous games, you could somehow see that some topics were close to the real life, for example, the role of each character during the crime.
    But in this Spirit of Justice, they treat lawyer like gods and demons. Like if they only exist in a fantasy world. "The law system decided to kill all the rebel lawyers" are we serious? How can you compare this to a real life fact? You can't, because it's unrealistic. And so is unrealistic most of this game.
    It's this game meant to be fun? Yes. But I remember when Ace Attorney was also serious.

    4)
    Storytelling:
    Short message about how they wrote the cases: three writers devided 6 cases (including the DLC), and you can easily see who wrote what. The first two cases have a large amount of gallery speaking. In the first case, in particular, it's very annoying.
    The third and fifth case are known for the veeery long pauses with dots. You only read dots everytime they have to say something. It's really annoying in the game.
    The fourth case is probably the best written case in the game, and personally maybe the best case in the game, even if I didn't like it so much due to some motives.

    In conclusion... Spirit of Justice is a fun game, somewhat, but with Dual Destinies they just don't work like the previous games.
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See all 25 User Reviews