The Ace Attorney games, which take the stage at the beginning of the millennium, occupy a unique industry segment. Although the press basically apostrophizes them as an adventure game, we could hardly condemn anyone who would book them as a more sophisticated visual novel, as we have little direct control over the character. Rather, we will puppet over voluminous dialogues and beautifully drawn stills, sometimes trying to select the right answer, other times trying to select the right evidence, which is only sometimes broken by a detective segment. Sound boring? Not at all! The Ace Attorney games try to nail us to the screen with their twisted story, complex, interesting characters and puzzles that get our minds to work, and they tell us more orally about their success,
Basically, we direct the famous defence attorney, Phoenix Wright, possibly his mentor or one of his disciples, to solve a more complex case. Still, the Chronicles, which have unearthed and expanded the first and second parts of The Great Ace Attorney, have never appeared in the West. This time, all the way to the XIX. we go back to the end of the twentieth century, to the elegant, confluent, uplifting milieu of the Victorian era, to straighten the careers of one of Wright’s ancestors, Ryunosuke Naruhodo, a university English major, with understanding hands. If one hopes that the young Japanese student will immediately become the devil of the courtrooms, he will be disappointed. For Ryunosuke will stumble initially and depend on our ability as he evolves through his tumultuous early affairs and negotiations. In practice, this is a beautiful and detailed premise,
The first half of the two-game processing package unfolds Ryunosuke’s initial wing trials at a surprisingly comfortable pace, guiding our character through five voluminous chapters on the bumpy road to becoming a defence attorney, carefully building the pillars of the all-encompassing masterpiece. We get to know the era, the major cornerstones of the profession and its key players thoroughly before the story really opens up for us. However, a murder-seasoned trip to England will eventually set things in motion, and from there, there will be no stopping until the end of the game. Because of the chapter’s nature, it’s fairly easy to consume, and even with an exciting crime scene, it also becomes impossible to put around. Since we don’t even have the story to tell the story in more detail, since in such a criminal stage, the mystery is the excitement,
Those who have already played Ace Attorney will once again control the events with a sure hand, as the Chronicles operate with already well-established mechanics. Accordingly, in negotiations, we will try to spot inconsistencies in testimony, substantiate our argument with the appropriate evidence, and, if appropriate, visit the scene of the act, research with our cursor to find new incriminating evidence. All of this is served in the form of beautifully drawn, animated backgrounds and superbly written, voluminous dialogues, but since there is no terminated text, let’s prepare for a hearty reading.
Of course, there were also one or two occasional innovations. Such is the persuasion of the jury, whereby skilful manipulation and twisting the jury’s reasoning, i.e. spotting the backs, we can shake the determination of the esteemed jury, which may eventually tip the scales to our side (in this case, we are talking about a real balance, our chances of success). . In such cases, our hero listens carefully to the jury’s speech. If he is eye-catching enough, he can point out where its logic is wrong.
A more interesting colouring element is the so-called Deduction Circulation, in which we will only fight against a certain detective baptized as Herlock Sholmes due to his damn ownership. The enthusiasm of the famous detective will sometimes lead him in the wrong direction, and we will have to point out possible mistakes, which is not so simple, as his argument is difficult to challenge. At such times, we need to spot certain key elements on the ground that can steer the mindset of our favourite detective in a new direction. Anyway, Sholmes will eventually become a friend of Ryunosuke, which will make these little mental beats much more personal.
Obviously, it won’t be the foam-light interactivity that will grab the one-time player. The secret is to be found in the well-written dialogues and the lovable-hate staff. Funny and refined friends and iconic opponents will colour our legal careers, who will grow to our hearts over time. Then we will recognize their characteristic reactions even when awakened from our dreams. As we move forward in the story, we will get to know them better and better, their characters will deepen and become more colourful, and we will certainly be able to expect some surprising twists regarding them.
Despite the slow flow of the story itself, it is fascinating, and at the end of some chapters, we have several new questions that prompt us to start the next act immediately. The negotiations themselves are quite complex and, in fact, downright cunning, and they are distinctly varied, which is a great help in not feeling monotonous despite the relatively guided gameplay.
By the way, guided gameplay: if there’s something that keeps pepper breaking under our noses, it’s the game’s rigid structure. Writing, and basically, the arc of the story, doesn’t really support resilient thinking, so if we come up with something prematurely and miss a few steps and immediately present the fateful evidence, the game penalizes us instead of rewarding it, as – like a high school math graduate – detailed derivation is also important here. Similarly, the backs of this are true: if for some reason we don’t figure out which exact proof to present to which character, we’ll have a good chance of getting stuck for a while (our friend, Google, of course, will help) because the game doesn’t offer alternatives or workarounds. Obviously, this won’t be a bad game, just sometimes annoying, strictly just jumping in the developers’ footsteps to move forward.
Chronicles also cater to players with various extras. One of these is the story mode, where the game is practically played by itself, and we, like some visual novel, can enjoy leaning back in our armchair. There’s also the Escapades mode, which covers short episodes wedged into our main business for recreation. We get many artworks, music, developer commentary, and even some unlockable outfits, so there’s no shortage of bonuses.
As for the presentation, we will not be in for a big surprise. The painted backgrounds are cosy and even distinctly beautiful, preceded by beautifully executed 3D models, sometimes deepening their individuality with comic and other catchy animations, all presented in 4K resolution. There is no problem with the music. Perhaps, the dubbing is missing this time as well, where the deeper and higher beeps, which have almost become a trademark, are meant to represent the speaker’s voice – a great way to exclude passive members of our household from the world.
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles was released on July 27, 2021, for PlayStation consoles, Nintendo Switches and computers. For more releases and tests this year, visit our constantly updated game calendar!
- Excellent writing, interesting characters
- A captivating, refined story
- Eye-catching presentation
- Suitably inflexible, guided gameplay
- Each case is a bit tidal and slow
- It doesn’t offer much news compared to previous parts
The package offers exactly what you would expect from an Ace Attorney game, which can be both good and bad news. It’s good, as the excellent characters, complex story, snappy presentation, and meticulous gameplay return. At the same time, the storyline is occasionally tidal and sluggish, and the game’s mechanics are by no means forward-looking compared to the previous parts of the series. Still, The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles features two excellent pieces from the series that fit all the space in collecting adventure players ready to read and think. This is a great opening for newcomers as it can be an interesting addition for veterans. And for fans of the genre, it is an essential piece, especially since it is now appearing for the first time in the West localized in English.