The Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy was originally released for the Nintendo 3DS in 2014, and collected the first three games of the franchise.
Bringing the Ace Attorney series to a brand new generation, the same trilogy has now been remade and scaled into high definition for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
The collection features Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney; Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice for All; and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Trials and Tribulations.
And while the gameplay remains relatively untouched, the artistic fidelity has been greatly improved.
Each set piece looks like it’s been ripped straight out of an anime in high definition, and it’s a pleasure to watch the exuberant characters interact on screen as Phoenix – the player – delves deeper into each wacky case.
Although the graphics have been improved since the trilogy’s 3DS remaster, there aren’t a great deal of options to tinker with behind the scenes.
Background music and sound effects can be adjusted on-the-fly, but the only other options make minute changes to text skipping and text box transparency.
New players probably won’t be too bothered by this, as the narrative flows beautifully in each game and every case.
However, the lack of scene-skip or text-speed options might leave returning players and hardcore fans feeling deflated.
Fortunately, the Phoenix Wright games are entertaining enough to ignore the lack of new options.
The game feels like a long-running TV show with quirky recurring characters, reused sets, and out-of-this-world answers to the various mysteries presented.
There is nothing more satisfying than picking apart a witness’s testimony with cold, hard evidence against their lousy excuse for an alibi.
While each of the three games take some time to begin delving in to the real plots of the “episodes” – they do a great job at building up the difficulty of each case as they emerge.
As the first case introduces one murder weapon and a potential suspect, this quickly ramps up to include a plethora of scenarios to the mix.
Although the games explain their mechanics well, they sometimes get lost-in-translation as new situations arise without warning.
This, for example, makes pointing out where a suspect should have been standing at a crime-scene a little difficult when Phoenix was intentionally double-bluffing without signifying this to the player.
Regardless, the incredible mechanics of shouting “Hold It!” or “Objection!” during each court case is just an excellent feeling.
And it’s even more satisfying, then, when you wrap a suspect up in their lies, prompting them to make a fool of themselves in order to get your “not guilty” verdict.
The Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy brings together arguably the most influential and incredibly designed fictional attorney games to one place once again.
While fans of the genre may not find anything spectacular about this re-release – other than the beautifully re-worked graphics, and the new platforms – newcomers to the franchise will find incredibly entertaining court case stories and engaging gameplay which forces players to think.
And with three full games included in the purchase, gamers will have an enormous amount of hours of fun to get through.