Review of The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles – More History Lesson than laughter

The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles offers an alternative to Ace Attorney’s courtroom battles. It still features a number of colorful characters and unusual methodologies but is a completely different experience overall. Ace Attorney’s excellent localisation makes The Great Ace Attorney feel like a joke that you must explain: Ryunosuke Narutodo, your protagonist, is believed to be an ancestor to Phoenix Wright (originally Ryuichi Nagodo). This rename illustrates a problem that was not uncommon in Japanese media. The belief that Japanese works could overwhelm or confuse western viewers if they were adopted as something other than a Japanese one is a common issue. This is also why Shin Megami Tensei and Yakuza games are not being localized.

Review of The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles

  • DeveloperCapcom
  • PublisherCapcom
  • PlatformSwitch
  • Available:Available July 27th for Switch, PS4 & PC

Ace Attorney was made in West Asia by localisation, adding a cultural component to the comedy with references and punny names. However, The Great Ace Attorney has a Japanese theme (some characters are still renamed for extra punny goodness). The story is set during the Japanese Meiji period or in the British Victorian era. I view both the games and the historical context as a commentary on this time, not a series of dramatic court cases.

The first case brought Ryunosuke, a hapless man, into the spotlight and forced him to appear in court. After learning the basics of Ace Attorney, you will listen to witnesses testimonies and then cross-examine them. Cross-examination allows you to ask witnesses for more information about a statement, possibly gleaning additional details. You can present any statement you find inconsistent with your evidence in court records.

Ryunosuke is a very tolerant person at first. He starts his legal career by saying “yes!” He raises his hand awkwardly, becoming more confident with each passing day. After a terrible event, Ryunosuke is able to complete a fast education as a lawyer on board a steamboat to England. He meets Herlock Sholmes, the brilliant consulting detective. Things work slightly differently in England. The courts have a jury system. Ryunosuke must convince both the judge and the jury. This idea is not very useful gameplay-wise. Every trial will end with a verdict by the jury. This triggers a Summation Examination. It requires that each jury member give their reasons for their decision. You’re also asked to make opposing arguments against one another so that the jury can no longer reach an agreement.

Although it’s an attractive idea, the reality is that each case will be much longer because of this. Cross-examination is a common practice in cross-examining multiple witnesses, an idea that was inspired by Professor Layton and Phoenix Wright. The other witness may react by snorting or yelling “aha!” Giving away an inconsistency in the easiest way possible is a very sloppy way to get new information.

The third element, Herlock Sholmes’ Dance of Deduction is something I am in love with. The Great Ace Attorney games, aside from being historical pastiche and Sherlock Holmes fanfic, are unabashed Sherlock Holmes fanfic. Many characters from Arthur Conan Doyle stories are featured, with many small nods to their originals. This Sherlock Holmes version is the most important. The Doyle Estate retains the rights to several Sherlock Holmes stories.

Herlock, who is an imposter, appears from thin air and declares he has solved the case. But unlike Sherlock Holmes, Herlock often does things horribly wrong. You are here to help Herlock correct his mistake after he has made the deduction. You can simply correct Herlock by looking at a portion of the scene, and choosing from a few alternatives to the evidence Herlock had used for his deduction. The presentation is amazing! The presentation is amazing!

This is the most accessible Ace Attorney yet – both titles come with a ‘story mode’, which runs the game automatically and makes all decisions for you without you having to press a button.

It is fundamentally important to note that, although The Great Ace Attorney games are similar in some aspects, the narrative goals of their games differ from Ace Attorney’s. This may disappoint long-standing series fans but also offers an option for Ace Attorney fans who find Ace Attorney too silly. Ace Attorney was not about going to court, but about showing the comically overwrought villains who did what. As soon as you saw certain characters you could tell that they had done it.

Ace Attorney was all about the “how” and not the “if”, so the “how” had to be impressive to the point where actually playing it could become frustrating. Solutions that are difficult to figure out are great for passive players, but less for active ones. You will find The Great Ace Attorney to be much more useful and more focused on the court process and finer details of justice. Susato Mikotoba, the Judicial Assistant, is always there for you, whether during an investigation or in courtroom. She offers guidance on where to find clues. I found it difficult to get involved because of the limited options. You can be less absurd with crimes, even if they seem a bit too extreme. I find this to be great writing. You can eliminate the impossible and what remains must be truth. (S.Holmes)

It’s not about courtroom bombings in the last minute. This game is about Japan’s relationship with Great Britain. Partly inspired by the British monarchy, the Empire of Japan was created.

Ace Attorney’s animators and artists will be most proud of their work in The Great Ace Attorney. They are the best games in this series.

The Japanese believed Great Britain was dope and tried to emulate its colonization model. However, Britain saw Japan as inferior because they insisted on upholding their traditions and were apathetic towards Christianity. This game shows a lot about the casual and smarmy racism that was prevalent at the time. The central conflict which is not discussed much until very few cases in the series, portrays Japanese people who are torn between trying to conform to this new concept of Japaneseness or violently rejecting it to preserve their cultural identity. This is a very different balance act that can lead people to mistakenly interpret the game to be imperialist. However, it’s still surprisingly relevant today in Japan, where certain Japanese things are too difficult for Westerners and Japan has lost its honor by dealing with Western countries and losing the Second World War.

Although it is all interesting, the conflict can be difficult to spread over two games. Especially when you consider that two of those games depict this conflict through an assortment of characters who are not very likeable. Many cases are written by Natsume Soseki (a well-known author). His additions to the game can be interesting if you consider it from historical perspectives, however, this Ace Attorney character is not one I really care about. Ace Attorney required you to defend your friends, and gave you information about every cast member with each case. Here it is a lot more unrelated. Ryunosuke is a passive character. The game’s greatest twist does not even include him. Ace Attorney is loved for its characters. I wish its spinoff was stronger.

This bundle, The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles, is lovely, but it’s not as good as its predecessors. There is much to enjoy here. It tries new things gameplay- and setting-wise. I also find it entertaining references. And Shu Takumi’s writing is always a delight, no matter how many books he releases. Although the historical setting may be of limited interest for some, it’s not a problem. I would rather tell you it’s just like Ace Attorney, call it prequel or great way to get started with the series. Let’s get to it.

Publiated at Mon 26 July 2021, 12:10:09 +0000

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.