As far as mind-bending courtroom procedural puzzle games go, I have no objections to Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice.
The sixth title in the core Ace Attorney series, Spirit of Justice sees Phoenix traveling to the far-off land of Khura’in, where the people treasure the word of spirit mediums far beyond those of any defense attorney. In fact, it has been decades since an attorney has stepped up to defend a potentially guilty party, as judges in Khura’in bestow upon lawyers the same penalty imposed on their clients, including the death penalty. What began as a simple trip to visit a longtime friend literally becomes a life and death case for Phoenix, and that’s just the opening of the game.
For those who’ve not had the pleasure of playing a Phoenix Wright game, the execution is simple but still quite engaging. Presented as a visual novel, players are tasked with navigating menus and examining evidence to find clues that can prove their client not guilty. New to the series are divination séances, which gives you the ability to see what a victim was thinking just before their death. Studying these critical moments can provide insight to crack a case wide open, so long as you put what you find into the right context.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice looks as crisp and compelling as ever, combining anime cutscenes with vivid visual elements that add loads of personality to the characters you encounter. The motions of the various characters you face in the courtroom do get repetitive after a while, but breaks in the case are rewarded with new animations that can literally let you see witnesses sweat. Keep going down the right logic path, and you’ll make it out of the courtroom in one piece.
If you’re looking for a fast paced, action-packed title to enjoy on your Nintendo 3DS console, then this is not it. Those in search of a story that will force them to use logic to think themselves out of trouble, though, will absolutely adore the multiple cases available in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice.
With new otherworldly gameplay elements, intriguing writing, and lots of courtroom drama, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice is the best game in the series yet. Case closed.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice is now available for Nintendo 3DS.