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Angela Oct 20, 2013 (edited Nov 17, 2013)

It's been a while since we've had a thread designated to an all-new Ace Attorney title.  In keeping the tradition alive (Phoenix Wright, Justice For All, Trials & Tribulations, Apollo Justice, and Investigations), I thought it appropriate to create one for the upcoming Dual Destinies.

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies sees the return of courtroom hero Phoenix Wright. The much loved gameplay and features from previous titles in the Ace Attorney series are back -- but for the first time in stunning 3D graphics, bringing the courtroom and characters to life and putting players directly in the heart of the action.

* More courtroom drama as Apollo Justice and new Associate Attorney and psychoanalysis expert Athena Cykes join Phoenix at the Wright Anything Agency
* Psychoanalyze witnesses to reveal the truth with the brand new Mood Matrix feature
* "Hold it!" Present your evidence, challenge the witnesses and experience life as a real Attorney
* Stunning dynamic 3D graphics: Bring the characters and courtroom to life and investigate crime scenes from various angles to uncover hidden clues
* Brand new interface and game progression system for fans and newcomers alike

Release Date: NA & EU: October 24, 2013 (via Nintendo eShop)
Price: $29.99 / €24.99
Download Size: 4648 Blocks (580MB)
Official Site: http://www.ace-attorney.com/
DLC: Anyone purchasing Dual Destinies from October 24 to November 7 will be able to get a free costume pack featuring a brand new outfit for each of the three main characters – Phoenix Wright, Apollo Justice and Athena Cykes. Following this promotional period the costume pack will be available to purchase for $0.99 / €0.99.  On November 21, the previously announced extra episode "Turnabout Reclaimed" which introduces Orla the whale and her pirate trainer Sasha Buckler will go on sale for $5.99 / €4.99.

Promotional Videos:
E3 2013 Trailer
Nintendo Direct Japanese Trailer

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A pity the game is going digital-only, but given Capcom's dismissive treatment of Gyakuten Kenji 2, I'm relieved we're getting this one at all.

And wow, has it really been six years since we last left Apollo's arc? There were a number of lingering plot threads yet to be explored in that particular story, so it'll be interesting to see if they choose to expand upon it here.

At any rate, I sure hope to see some of STC's fan series regulars weigh in on the game in the coming weeks; these engaging Ace Attorney threads have made for some of my personal favorite reads. (And re-reads!)

Qui-Gon Joe Oct 20, 2013

Okay, I WOULD be buying it, but Capcom also said that DuckTales was digital only and then a month later announced retail disc copies. I'm gonna wait a bit to see if they're going to fake us out again.  GRRR.  Still, looking forward to this one a lot eventually!

Ashley Winchester Oct 20, 2013

Qui-Gon Joe wrote:

Okay, I WOULD be buying it, but Capcom also said that DuckTales was digital only and then a month later announced retail disc copies. I'm gonna wait a bit to see if they're going to fake us out again.  GRRR.  Still, looking forward to this one a lot eventually!

Wait, DuckTales is on disc? I thought the only thing in those cases was a pin and a voucher...

Qui-Gon Joe Oct 20, 2013

Ashley Winchester wrote:

Wait, DuckTales is on disc? I thought the only thing in those cases was a pin and a voucher...

That was the initial thing.  Now they're releasing a disc version for all consoles.http://www.siliconera.com/2013/09/18/ducktales-remastered-getting-retail-disc-version/

Ashley Winchester Oct 20, 2013

Qui-Gon Joe wrote:
Ashley Winchester wrote:

Wait, DuckTales is on disc? I thought the only thing in those cases was a pin and a voucher...

That was the initial thing.  Now they're releasing a disc version for all consoles.http://www.siliconera.com/2013/09/18/ducktales-remastered-getting-retail-disc-version/

Wow... personally I think that's pretty cool. I think I'm going to pick that up...

I thought we'd see a 3DS port or something instead before that however.

Jay Oct 21, 2013

Hugely looking forward to this. Not quite sure when I'll get to it but it's very high on my must-play list. I have been very impressed with the videos and how the 3D seems to have retained the charm of the 2D drawings (often I find charm gets lost in translation). And of course it's great to have Phoenix back. Kind of wishing I had replayed the first four recently, mainly because I have totally forgotten where they ended up, but if I got into that I would never make it to this.

Angela Oct 21, 2013

Jay wrote:

Hugely looking forward to this. Not quite sure when I'll get to it but it's very high on my must-play list. I have been very impressed with the videos and how the 3D seems to have retained the charm of the 2D drawings (often I find charm gets lost in translation).

Agreed.  Judging by the videos and the playable demo, I'd think it hard for anyone to argue against the new cel-shaded models.  Loving how AA-esque everything looks: the bright contrast, the extremely vibrant color palette, and especially the character animations.  Liquid-fluid they are; seeing Phoenix's remade court mannerisms, such as his shocked expression, or breaking out in a sweat, or the ever-satisfying desk slam is grin-inducing. smile  Athena's spirited animation set is even more fun to look at!

From what I can tell of the demo, the 3D effect also looks to have been implemented tastefully.  Superb depth of field on the characters, and thankfully, the framerate doesn't take a single hit when turned on.  (We'll see how things look during what I'm guessing will be the more graphic-intensive investigation phases.)

Amazingu Oct 21, 2013

My first contact with this series was actually the Layton vs Ace Attorney game, which I played earlier this year.
I liked it so much that I went back to experience the entire AA series, and I'm currently about to wrap up the second case (which is loooooooooong) in the third game.

Really loving it, so I'll definitely be picking up this game as well once I'm up to speed.

Angela Oct 22, 2013

Amazingu wrote:

I'm currently about to wrap up the second case (which is loooooooooong) in the third game.

I envy everyone who gets to enjoy Trials & Tribulations for the first time.  Enjoy all the awesomeness that's about to unfold, man.

Amazingu Oct 22, 2013

Angela wrote:

I envy everyone who gets to enjoy Trials & Tribulations for the first time.  Enjoy all the awesomeness that's about to unfold, man.

From what I've noticed, fans seem to be divided on which game is the best in the series.
A lot of people say 1, but I've heard a lot of people say 3 as well.

So far, it's going to be hard to top the first game, as far as I'm concerned.
I really enjoyed the Edgeworth story arch in the first game and the final case (the one that was added for the DS version) was all kinds of awesome, and from what I've seen of 3 so far, it's not quite up to snuff (yet). Godot seems like an interesting antagonist though.

By the way, did I ever post this?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFldBVWFgWo

I love this video so much.

TerraEpon Oct 23, 2013

Most people love T&T based on the last case (and somewhat the one that leads into it).

XLord007 Oct 23, 2013 (edited Oct 23, 2013)

I'm listening to the rather pleasant OST for GS5 as I write this, but I have no plans to buy the game anytime soon. If it was a retail release, I'd pick it up at launch to support the risk Capcom was taking, but for a download that is locked to a specific 3DS, I won't buy it unless I'm ready to play it immediately or it gets cheap. Unfortunately, I'm still way behind on this series. I have all five U.S.-released games sitting on my shelf, by I'm still in AA2, so I have a long ways to go before I'll be ready to play this one.

SonicPanda Oct 24, 2013

So, here we go.
As I 'm writing this, there's roughly 10 hours to go before it drops onto the eShop, and unfortunately it'll have to wait for me until the evening because 12PM is around when I'm leaving for work and I won't be able to play it until afterward. But still, this series means a lot to me, and I owe them the benefit of the doubt, even as I have some misgivings about some of the choices Eshiro and new his scenario man have made (more on that much later, and in the short term at least, under spoiler cover). It'll also be interesting to see if anything comes of Capcom's sorta-kinda hint that we may yet see AAI2 if this sells. Mostly though, I can't deny that most of my favorite games of the last few years have been in the graphic adventure/mystery/puzzle style of game, and AA was largely responsible for getting me onto that path.
Anyway, the game. Or at this point, the demo.
Graphically, it's very handsome to look at, and little touches like Ted's disarming technique and Juniper's tiny coughs give me hope for the colorful personality the series is built on. Musically thus far, though, it's a bit of a wash. Even playing through the demo twice, only the objection theme and danger theme stand out in my mind, and that's only because both of those are carryovers from previous entries (I kind of wish they had made a new objection theme altogether; I've never really liked the one from T&T, which this one is based on). I have to hope that Iwadare has produced snappier tunes for the rest.
At this early point, I'm a bit torn about Phoenix. It was interesting to see the confidence he had in T&T's finale evolve into a confident cool in AJ, and here he seems to have lapsed a little too quickly back into his sweaty uncertain self. The DLC case allegedly will detail his first case upon returning to the bar, so maybe we'll see some what brought him back to this point. The single lock of hair now pointing forward is a nice touch.
I don't yet have any real affinity for the new girl, however. She comes across in the demo as being even more immature than Kay before her, and I wasn't exactly over the moon about her, either.
On the other hand, I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more of Apollo. Allegedly, he leapt to the top of the AA popularity polls in Japan as a result of this game, and I'm eager to see him finally get the development that was denied by a certain someone in the should-have-been climax of his eponymous game.
And thankfully, I won't have to wait much longer.

Angela Oct 24, 2013 (edited Oct 24, 2013)

SonicPanda wrote:

As I 'm writing this, there's roughly 10 hours to go before it drops onto the eShop, and unfortunately it'll have to wait for me until the evening because 12PM is around when I'm leaving for work and I won't be able to play it until afterward.

Ditto. My shift begins at 12 sharp here EST when the game becomes available.  Luckily, Friday's my day off, so I'm sure I'll be playing tonight well into tomorrow. In any case, LONGEST WORK DAY EVER confirmed.

Musically thus far, though, it's a bit of a wash. Even playing through the demo twice, only the objection theme and danger theme stand out in my mind, and that's only because both of those are carryovers from previous entries (I kind of wish they had made a new objection theme altogether; I've never really liked the one from T&T, which this one is based on). I have to hope that Iwadare has produced snappier tunes for the rest.

I've got the Original Soundtrack sitting on my shelf, and it's taken every fiber of my being to avoid popping it in; I fully plan on listening to it on a track-by-track basis as I'm playing the game. I suspect I'll have a write-up on the courtroom suite of tunes once Case One is complete, but so far, I will say that the new Pursuit ~ Cornered is INCREDIBLE.

At this early point, I'm a bit torn about Phoenix. It was interesting to see the confidence he had in T&T's finale evolve into a confident cool in AJ, and here he seems to have lapsed a little too quickly back into his sweaty uncertain self. The DLC case allegedly will detail his first case upon returning to the bar, so maybe we'll see some what brought him back to this point.

Not to worry. It's my understanding that the demo scenario plays off quite differently from the full retail release. They've deliberately gimped Nick's confidence and given him entirely new dialogue exclusive to the demo to ease both newcomers and vets alike back into the series.

On the other hand, I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more of Apollo. Allegedly, he leapt to the top of the AA popularity polls in Japan as a result of this game, and I'm eager to see him finally get the development that was denied by a certain someone in the should-have-been climax of his eponymous game.

That's because he was REVENGEANCE-FIED. ;) Well, we know how he got those bandages, though it'll be intriguing to see if there's any significance to that ballin' Captain Harlock-esque coat he's now sporting.

And.... welcome back, Sonic! Glad you could make it to the party. :)

Jay Oct 24, 2013 (edited Oct 24, 2013)

I'm sure you have all heard this but just in case anyone hasn't, here is Smooth McGroove's Cornered acapella. It's awesome - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALhAXtFR1LM

Edit: I'm in the midst of Zelda Oracle of Seasons and I have a backlog of games I have missed so I should really hold off getting this. But I might not be able to resist...

TerraEpon Oct 24, 2013

I'd say hopefully it'll be on sale at some point....but yeah that's not too likely.

What really sucks is by putting it digitally this way, no one can win. Either it sells well which means "see? People will buy digital!" or it won't which means "See? No one actually wanted this!"

SonicPanda Oct 25, 2013

And Part 1 is done, largely without much trouble. Two mistakes total isn't a bad beginning. The case itself was pretty nice, but I'm curious about something near the end (spoiler-vision, ho!): Couldn't the villain just have claimed to have beaned the victim with the fake? It seemed a bit too far of a leap to say with certainty that the one in the photo was absolutely real while the one in the room was absolutely fake. Or maybe there's a mentioned detail that I missed. It was quite late in the morning when I finished.

As Angela mentioned, Phoenix's introduction was much better-handled in the game proper than in the demo. I noticed he seems to have picked up Edgeworth's distinctive finger-wave, too. I'm hoping they take time later in the game to explain why Athena is there (the conclusion of the first case seems to hint that it will be soon), because at this point, despite the numerous times it's mentioned what an asset she is, she still seems unremarkable to me. No points for guessing a key part of the plot will be the story behind her blotted trauma, but I hope it's more than just a familial-tragedy card, the franchise has been to that well too many times.

As far as the animated intro to Part 2 is concerned, what the heck am I looking at, and did they just spoil who the killer is in the opening moments for the second time in a row?

Angela wrote:

That's because he was REVENGEANCE-FIED. wink

RULES OF TRIAL LAWWWW
Nah, probably not like that.

Angela wrote:

And.... welcome back, Sonic! Glad you could make it to the party. smile

Honestly, I wasn't going to be much company if I had hung around before, but I think I'm back on track now. Glad to see you guys, too.

Angela Oct 25, 2013 (edited Oct 26, 2013)

CASE ONE complete!  First, a few words about the game's 3DS-specific upgrades. 

The new 3D cel-shaded modeling work really is stellar. Color and contrast simply pop off the screen; the blues on Phoenix's suit, the yellows on Athena's jacket, the reds on Apollo's vest.... As Jay says, the charm of the 2D art is retained completely, shining particularly strong through the animation. Athena really is a fun character to watch. Her shocked gaping expression, the profusive sweat wipe, activating the Mood Matrix, subconsciously tinkering with her earring, stroking her ponytail, not one but TWO variations of the desk slam..... I know she's one of the main characters, but I'm hoping the rest of the supporting cast boasts such varied sets of animation.

About the only strike I would level against the graphics are the "snap back" animations.  There are instances where animation frames aren't utilized to transition back into a character's stationary stance -- instead, it merely "resets" to the intended pose. This was fine in the older titles, but given how glitzy the new engine looks, it does stand out a bit.

Two slots for saves now, nice. And getting to play individual sections of a specific case (much like how they offer in the HD Trilogy on iOS) should be handy for replays. Also, I love how when the camera pulls back to show the jurors murmuring after some revelation was dropped, the defense and prosecution are standing in the same poses as when they showed them from the bench. Cool touch.

In the demo, they gave the player the option to speed-skip through the text right off the bat. I'm happy that in the retail version, they've made it like the old games where the dialogue will only skip to the next text box after the initial one finishes; most of us want the default text speed to accommodate the game's intended pacing and character reaction cues. (And twice I found myself accidentally pressing the "A" button too quickly in the demo just to have a piece of dialogue pop up straight away and disappear without my intent.) Even so, Capcom did see it fit to give players the option to speed-skip even before completing the game -- the button is specifically designated to the "B" button now. Catering to all folks.

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Right, let's get to some story spoilers:

Athena starting off the game was a nice turn, considering how so front and center they've been marketing Phoenix's return. Which only made it that much more glorious when the "Turnabout Terror" makes his entrance. (I am a bit disappointed they didn't keep that moniker from the demo -- though they make plenty of amusing references to Phoenix's bluffing and nitpicking tactics.  Much to his chagrin.) 

Heh, loved the JFA reference of Phoenix being assaulted in a court of law, and losing his memory.

I find it hilarious (and awesome) how they've been able to keep up the running gag of using "Payne" as the opening prosecutor for every game. Gaspen sounds younger and more aggressive than I would have imagined a sibling of the "Rookie Killer" to be -- not to mention FAAAAR more arrogant. (Widget: "JERK!")  Also, the name pun continuity is brilliant.

Adam Corn wrote:

There is a spoiler tag. :)

I suppose either the new spoiler tag or the color=white can be used. Though I have found that using color=white does still show the text ever so slightly against the beige color of the new quote boxes. Not enough for me, personally, to make out in any distinguishable way -- but I'll use the spoiler tags to be absolutely safe.

SonicPanda wrote:

And Part 1 is done, largely without much trouble. Two mistakes total isn't a bad beginning. The case itself was pretty nice, but I'm curious about something near the end (spoiler-vision, ho!): Couldn't the villain just have claimed to have beaned the victim with the fake? It seemed a bit too far of a leap to say with certainty that the one in the photo was absolutely real while the one in the room was absolutely fake. Or maybe there's a mentioned detail that I missed. It was quite late in the morning when I finished.

I guess it all hinges on the idea that.... the bomb in the Phony Phanty photo was established as being the real deal from the start. I'm a little hazy as to the circumstance in which the photo was submitted to the Court Record - and when the photo itself was taken.  Obviously, it had to be taken before it was detonated, but after he used it against Arme -- hence the cracked screen.

SonicPanda wrote:

No points for guessing a key part of the plot will be the story behind her blotted trauma, but I hope it's more than just a familial-tragedy card, the franchise has been to that well too many times.

I'm almost certain that's the sort of angle they're going for, but who knows. My personal speculation? Maybe..... Blackquill will end up being a potential perpetrator. His persona being that of a ronin, the sword on the ground seemed to be a dead giveaway. In any case, that was one disturbing flashback. The creepy music box melody, the blood, the ink splotches etched on the faces of the court.... Chills.

SonicPanda wrote:

As far as the animated intro to Part 2 is concerned, what the heck am I looking at, and did they just spoil who the killer is in the opening moments for the second time in a row?

Those were my exact same reactions, especially that second point. Case One fell a bit short for me just because they.... revealed who the killer was right from the start. What made Case Ones like AA3's, AA4's, and GK2's so good was that they withheld that revelation until you're well into the plot. Here's hoping there's going to be some amazing twist we won't see coming for this Case 2.


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Musically, I think the entirety of the courtroom suite is solid, though weaker by comparison to some of my personal favorite selections from series past.  Certainly a more orchestral quality to the proceedings, with strong brass and strings work in particular. It's nice to see Iwadare finally upping the sound quality; if some of these instruments aren't live, they're very convincing samples. While Cross Examination 2013 doesn't reach the melodic highs of AA3's, the Allegro version quickly grew on me with that driving AA1 Allegro-style backing and groovy slap bass plunks. Tell the Truth 2013 is as dramatically weighty as Kenji 2's, but the elegance of the strings makes it far more menacing. Where AA5 really stands out is the aforementioned Pursuit ~ Cornered, which stands toe to toe with AA1, AA3 and Kenji 2 as one of my all-time favorite Pursuits. And here's something that's cool: there's an actual Variation with enough variations to actually consider it a variation! (That is, more than just a new intro -- some killer new orchestral hits and more accentuation on the bell gongs.) And hey, after six consecutive DS games in the span of eight years (if we're counting the Investigation titles), we're finally getting a newly arranged version of Suspense!

And here's something else that's neat. The OST release appears to have actual outros to the tracks, instead of simply looping and fading -- an Iwadare trademark, but an Ace Attorney first. Nice.

SonicPanda Oct 26, 2013

Adam Corn wrote:

There is a spoiler tag. smile

Oh hey, look at that. That'll make things simpler, thanks.

Just passed the first day of trial in Case 2. Misgivings over the opening cutscene aside, this case is awesome. Hell YES community activism through pro wrestling; this is the kind of goofy nonsense the series thrives on. And that's before Apollo's repeatedly branded as a demon (the Firebrand reference was a nice touch), Athena flips a policeman like a tea table, a prosecutor from jail appears with an attack hawk that uses Udgey's head as a perch, and a grown man starts acting like a crow in the courtroom. This is what I came for.

The characters are very strong this time around, with one exception, but I'll start with the good. Jinxie is adorable, the mayor feels like a self-deprecating take on Lana Skye, Filch's animations are incredible, and even Athena has improved, seeming much more comfortable with Apollo than Phoenix. She's not 100% there yet, but I'm more confident in her character now than when she was introduced with a stereotypical enthusiastic-girl-who's-also-a-klutz skit in the intro. Maggey staked out that territory a long time ago, and carried it off better. An important distinction between her and (hissss) Kay is that she's not yet a legend in her own mind. Kay was a self-aggrandizing punk who acted like BGOC because of something that wasn't even hers. Athena, in contrast, has her tech and passions held in check by her apparent self-loathing, and it makes her (in my estimation anyway) more sympathetic than Eshiro's last attempt at a leading lady.

Whew, tangent. Anyway, that brings us to the two biggest additions in Case 2: Bobby Fulbright and Simon Blackquill. Simon I have no issue with; he's the first legitimately-intimidating rival in the series since Manfred, his foibles are nowhere nearly as grating as Godot's coffee shtick, and his theme - along with the theme of The Amazing NineTails - are the first new pieces of music I'd call great without qualification. Fulbright, on the other hand...God, what a pill. I'm no fan of the Hot-Blooded archetype, and he wore out his welcome in about two minutes. You sir, are no Gumshoe, no Skye, no Badd, and I would think long and hard about whether to put you above Meekins. As of right now, the worst thing about the game.

Gameplay-wise it seems a little odd to have investigations so limited and directed. It's kind of cruel to be in the Wright office and not be able to check up on Charley. And having the first Perceive point you right toward the tell without letting you try first is also frustrating. But off of the strength of personalities on display, I'm having a pretty good time anyway.

XLord007 Oct 26, 2013

TerraEpon wrote:

I'd say hopefully it'll be on sale at some point....but yeah that's not too likely.

I'd say it's extremely likely. Capcom is very aggressive at managing its digital game portfolio and routinely puts its digital games on sale. Right now, many of the Resident Evil games are dirt cheap for Halloween. AA5 is brand new, so I'm not expecting a sale this year, but next year? Definitely.

SonicPanda Oct 27, 2013 (edited Oct 27, 2013)

Case 2, c'est fini. The back half wasn't quite as entertaining as the first, but it did a good job at the series' trademark plot twist, jerk 'n pulls. To answer my earlier question, i.e, did they reveal the killer in the opening cutscene, the answer is yes, sadly. That said, seeing the rest of the case's riddles unfurl was pretty entertaining. Still, once again, I'm not sure on one particular point...the final summary is a bit hazy on when exactly the key was swallowed. I suppose he might have been drugged while the key was available, put into the Chamber, brought back out again after the 'confession', and then woke up to swallow the key and get clocked with the statue. But for the end-case summary to gloss over these events seems a little sloppy. Also, was there anything probative in Jinxie's sleepwalking murmurs, or was that just a red herring? Maybe we'll see her again?

Anyway, fun case overall. I'm hoping the pattern of AA games with Iwadare peaking for me with the second case (The Stolen Turnabout in T&T, and Turnabout Airlines in AAI) doesn't hold with this one as well. At least the opening cutscene to the third case seems a little more ambiguous about its culprit...I think? Maybe? We'll see.

EDIT: Added a question that occured to me and modified some word choices. Also took out a section comparing the game to another, because I want to chew on it a bit longer first.

Angela Oct 27, 2013 (edited Oct 27, 2013)

Just wrapped up CASE TWO's Day 1 Trial. I agree with most everything you said, Sonic, and I'll take a few of 'em in turn.  But first, a few miscellaneous thoughts of my own.

Above where I mentioned that I was hoping the rest of the supporting cast boasts as many varied sets of animation as Athena? Yep, Capcom's delivering the goods all right. More and more am I applauding their decision to go with this 3D cel-shaded engine; it opens up SO many possibilities in bringing these characters to life. In addition to having so many more frames of animation to work with than the sprite-based games ever did, they also change up the camera perspective on characters to free them out of their usual static visual novel positions. It's a neat trick that constantly make them look new and fresh.

And it's the little details that are amazing.  For example, how Widget changes the look of its mood expressions alongside Athena. Or the way Taka gets wide-eyed whenever Blackquill slams the desk whilst he's perched on his shoulder. Or that Blackquill's.... shackles stay removed throughout the trial after he breaks out of them.

The graphics as a whole continue to impress. The.... Nine-Tails Vale environments look drop-dead gorgeous, and viewing them with the 3D turned on is even more awe-inspiring. I'm hardly an advocate for 3D, but its effects on backgrounds, character modeling, and even the interface itself are so tremendous, that I can't help but sing it high praise. This might well be the first 3DS game I'll ever play where I'll have the slider up on max the entire time.

Having said that, no longer being able to actually INVESTIGATE these finely detailed places is a major turn-off. I get that they may have been trying to streamline the experience, but as a pixel-hunter, I find this to be a huge strike against the game; it takes away quite a bit from the immersion factor. I see about a dozen things at.... Yokai Lane I would have loved to examine.

While the localization and dialogue are excellent, it's clear that the script was in serious need of another proofread. I've spotted several errors from this half-a-case alone, and while it's certainly not game-breaking (most of the errors are comprised of missing articles and conjunctions), it is irksome.

My favorite of Athena's European spoken exclamations? ..... Supplanting the series trademark "Noooooooo!" for "Nooooooon!" :P

Maybe it was too much to hope for the reappearance of..... Mr. Hat. Trucy's "3...2...1... magic panties disappearing animation" just isn't as endearing.

I laughed out loud when..... one of the jurors in court remarked how Apollo's forehead looked so much sexier after he made that case-breaking turnabout.

Case Two is front loaded with terrific new music themes.  Athena, Fulbright, Nine-Tails, L'Belle, and Blackquill are all top-shelf Iwadare.  The ultra-peppy Athena Cykes ~ Let's Do This! contrasts heavily with that eerie flashback rendition from earlier, doesn't it? And man, few can do tango pieces like Iwadare. .....Florent L'Belle ~ Je suis L'Belle ranks right up there with Luke Atmey and GK2's Ichiryuu's Farewell. 

---

SonicPanda wrote:

Anyway, that brings us to the two biggest additions in Case 2: Bobby Fulbright and Simon Blackquill. Simon I have no issue with; he's the first legitimately-intimidating rival in the series since Manfred, his foibles are nowhere nearly as grating as Godot's coffee shtick, and his theme - along with the theme of The Amazing NineTails - are the first new pieces of music I'd call great without qualification. Fulbright, on the other hand...God, what a pill. I'm no fan of the Hot-Blooded archetype, and he wore out his welcome in about two minutes. You sir, are no Gumshoe, no Skye, no Badd, and I would think long and hard about whether to put you above Meekins. As of right now, the worst thing about the game.

Blackquill is indeed a formidable prosecutor. He knows the rules of engagement, and matches up pound for pound with the defense -- and just by dint of what he is makes him ridiculously cool doing it. I can't shake the feeling that he's deeply connected with..... Athena, given that prior flashback, and how she reacted when Fulbright told her who the prosecutor in charge of this case would be. That brief instant made it seem like she has some history with him at least. Plus, they both specialize in psychological warfare, so I have a feeling they're going to be facing off sooner or later.  As for.... Fulbright, I'm not minding him as much as others appear to be. He's got enthusiasm at least, something that AJ-era Ema (and to a lesser extent, Badd) lacked. And I do like that he's not so over-the-moon for the prosecution a la Gumshoe.  I get the sense that he may have some story defining role yet to come, and whatever personality defects he has that folks are objecting to now could be forgiven when all is said and done. We'll see.

SonicPanda wrote:

Gameplay-wise it seems a little odd to have investigations so limited and directed. It's kind of cruel to be in the Wright office and not be able to check up on Charley.

Before I even highlighted this, I knew exactly what you were talking about. I thought the same when I was there. :)

SonicPanda Oct 28, 2013 (edited Oct 28, 2013)

Angela wrote:

And man, few can do tango pieces like Iwadare. .....Florent L'Belle ~ Je suis L'Belle ranks right up there with Luke Atmey and GK2's Ichiryuu's Farewell.

That piece is nice, too. The choral hits remind me of Metroid for some reason. But he makes it a little hard to enjoy his theme with those damned cellphone epaulets.

Escaped the first day of trial in Case 3. This is, of course, Athena's day in the sun, and the case itself is very well-regarded amongst those who've played the Japanese release, but it's also, you know, Case 3. Athena getting her spotlight at this time is, historically speaking, a bit like vacationing the coast just as a hurricane hits. It's where the most irritating characters, the most tedious semantics, and the blandest motives usually roost. Having gone a healthy chunk of the way into Case 3, has the hex doomed her maiden voyage before leaving the hangar? Well...

I'll have to see where it ends to be positive, but at this point, I'd say...probably not. Make no mistake, there are some very annoying characters at this point, but it's mitigated by both the appearance of an old fave - Klavier! - and the redemption of some of the offending parties at trial. There's also at least one joke reference to a certain character that I'm certain Angela is sure to appreciate. Sss, sss, sss. The person in question is also the most amusing character in this chapter so far.

The premise is also pretty ingenuous, too, and the 'double mockery' re-enactment gave me - probably STC's most vocal AJAA proponent - cause for joy, even as it was super-short and Klavier's new VA didn't even try for his musical Objection inflection. Also, no Ema, and that makes me sad. Stormy or sunny, she's still my favorite AA lady. On another note, it wasn't until Athena's dialogue crack about Apollo's scissor-like hair betraying his preference in Rock-Paper-Scissors games that I understood the extra punny layer to his former adversary being a rock star. Man, I feel dumb sometimes.

Incidentally, that costume. That's Lamiroir's, isn't it?

EDIT: On a non-spoilery note, the game seems to be doing well for itself on the eShop, currently sitting at #1 despite the recent release of a new Pokemon game. If this means AAI2 gets to come over, I'll be happy.

Angela Oct 28, 2013 (edited Oct 29, 2013)

CASE TWO complete!

You know, it wasn't until the second time that Blackquill broke free of his shackles did I realize they actually used a different, less dense sounding clinking noise whenever he moved. (Specifically when he taps his head twice in succession.) I didn't catch that the first time since I was without my headphones.  Cool attention to detail.

Also, Blackquill comes up with some pretty catchy nicknames. Your Baldness, Fool Bright, Little Scamp, Tricksy Tanuki.... my favorite by far is Deviant Dandy. I also liked how they acknowledged what suddenly began to feel like phrases becoming a little too well-worn for their own good -- such as Blackquill's use of the word "jabbering," and Apollo throwing it right back in his face by saying, "No, it's time you stopped YOUR jabbering." Or Apollo's trademark "I'm fine!" turning into "I'm.... not fine, am I?" toward the final, harrowing stretch of the trial.

I liked that they skirted around the issue of.... Damian's possessed state being genuine or not. He played his schizophrenic condition so well, I was beginning to wonder if he really was taken over by a demonic entity! And vaguely concluding that Tenma Taro finally left him thanks to Jinxie's ward charm was ambiguously perfect.

SonicPanda wrote:

Also, was there anything probative in Jinxie's sleepwalking murmurs, or was that just a red herring? Maybe we'll see her again?

You mean her.... 'Taro' speak? While it flies in the face of Athena's more reasonable explanation of fear and insomnia, I sort of like the idea that, much like her father, she was indeed being possessed by an evil entity. (Yeah, I'm definitely TEAM MYTHOLOGICAL. Hey, why not? We're actually talking about a series that's dealt with spirits and spirit mediums before in no uncertain terms.)

Anyway, very good case. Some excellent twists 'n turnabouts toward the home stretch, and despite my earlier grumblings about not being able to investigate (most) environments anymore, the overall experience still felt substantial and satisfying. Bring on Case 3!

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