Capcom Explains Why Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies Is Digital Only

Monday, May 13th, 2013

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies

Earlier today Capcom released a press release on Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies’ (the fifth installment in the mainline series) western release. What was first excitement turned into disappointment for a few, with the announcement that the game will only be released as a digital download on the Nintendo eShop.

With the rest of series, excluding a certain two, all being localized and released in physical form, this news came as a bit of a shock. With this being the first title in the Ace Attorney franchise having a digital-only release, Capcom USA’s Senior Vice-President, Christian Svensson, explains why it needed to be this way:

Sorry guys, but a physical release is not in the cards.

Historically it’s been tough to attract long term retail support for Ace Attorney titles. With the release of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies we wanted as many people as possible to be able to enjoy the game for as long as possible. With that in mind we have opted for a digital only release via the Nintendo 3DS eShop.

I understand that this decision may upset fans who wanted to have a physical version of the title to add to their collection but we believe this direction is the best to take.

We will be confirming details on the price point in the not-so-distant future which I hope will also shed more light on the strategy at play here.

In my humble opinion, I can’t say I really blame them and understand where they’re coming from. With the series as niche it is, unlike previously, certain risks just couldn’t be ignored this time. One title has still not been localized, and another title is in status limbo over its localization. If this was really the only option for them, and the only way for us to be able to play it in English, then so be it. What do you all think?

Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies is a 3DS exclusive title, and will be arriving in the West this fall. If you’re interested in the series, but haven’t played any of previous installments, check here to get any or all of the previous games on Amazon.

About David Fernandes

(Community Manager) David is an assistant admin and community manager at oprainfall. He joined the Operation Rainfall Campaign at the beginning, and became one of the staff as the first wave of new volunteers were needed back in mid June. He is an avid video game collector, and lover of most game genres. David spends much of his time in a futile effort in clearing out his ever growing video game backlog.




  • Why not have an online retail release though? It’s where I get all of my new games anyway

  • DigDugDude

    It’s upsetting, but to be expected of a niche title. I just hope this isn’t the start of a new trend.

    • Honestly, it’s gonna become more commonplace, I think. Niche titles will be the first ones to get download only, but I think we’re gonna see more and more games head in this direction.

    • unknowncast

      The least they can do is do first print runs.

    • After how AAI sold, we did not get AAI2. Based on the sales for AAI, we should be happy we’re getting it at all. A print run still costs them money they aren’t willing to spend. Are they able to, or do they have it? I dunno. But having it at all is better than not.

    • unknowncast

      To be fair, it was a spin-off and it didn’t have Phoenix Wright as the main character. Also, Capcom has more money (despite losing plenty) then other niche pubs and they seem more then capable of getting retail copies to NA stores.

    • XSEED and other small companies don’t seem to mind putting their “niche” games out at retail (with collector’s goodies to boot!). But the game publishing giant, Capcom, expects people to believe they can’t feasibly offer their “niche” (compared to Resident Evil and Street Fighter, sure, I guess) game at retail at all? Please.

    • DigDugDude

      I agree with you.

      I think Capcom needs serious reworking in their marketing and customer relations department. They’ve really been in hot water lately.

    • well we are kinda destroying them. Ever since the cancellation of MML3 people stopped buying their games. That and they keep taking really bad decisions like their DLC strategy or their remakes, not to mention they have failed to deliver blockbuster games also, and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate does not count because its just another remake. I personally have only bought Darkstalkers Resurection in the past 3 years. They don’t deserve my money nowdays

    • An Tran

      XSEED also opts for digital-only if it’s convenient for them. Remember Unchained Blades?

    • And that’s why I still haven’t purchased Unchained Blades, despite that I was looking forward to it. I can’t justify buying a 30 dollar download, when the 3DS still has no account system.

    • PSP is better anyways

      Get it on the PSP.

    • I would, if all my PSPs weren’t broken.

  • I would´ve liked at least a limited physical release. Oh well 🙁

  • handsomejack47

    As long as it doesn’t take up too much room on a SD card, I’ll take it. it’ssomething.jpg

  • This is crap and I’m not even going to lie about it. There is no reason this couldn’t have been given a limited print run at retail and also offered on the eShop, like Fire Emblem. That would have truly made the game more accessible and also appeased the hardcore Ace Attorney fans and collectors like myself. Not only do I love collecting these games, but eShop versions of games which could easily be made available at retail are objectively worse for the consumer, due to the fact that you have to re-purchase eShop games if you lose, break, or sell your 3DS.

  • A little disappointed, only because I wanted one like the collector’s edition like they’ve got in Japan (with the Phoenix statue and all) but I’m glad we’re getting it at all. Honestly I like the little addons/freebies, but I know those aren’t necessary to enjoy the game. 😛 Honestly, I do hope this means they may even more consider bringing AAI2 in this manner. (Though I know that’s still unlikely.)

  • unknowncast

    Technically, you would want the game in every format of purchase to be accessible; digital only leaves out those with no internet or the bad kind. This most likely Capcom just being Capcom considering they have their own store they can make up most of the purchases then rely on the big chains who make that big of a deal about what they get.

    And since this is a niche franchise, I’m pretty sure we’re are a lot more savvy then retail consumers they can easily make physical copies only available digitally.

  • MusubiKazesaru

    psychical form?`

  • As long as the game is cheaper on the eShop than it would be if it were in retail, I’m fine with this.

    • It won’t be.

    • CHRIS

      It will probably be more expensive.. Well the EU eShop will anyway.

  • I don’t really care. I generally download 3DS games anyway.

  • Ted

    *physical
    Not trying to be a dick.

    • Guest

      Grammar Nazi then? Lol

  • And Capcom does it again. Now I’m gonna miss on Ace Attorney 5 because of them being idiots once again


  • And now, I can’t buy this game. Awesome.

  • DAFUQ?!?!

    Nooooooooooooooo damn it WHY ISN’T THIS SERIES MORE “popular” ?! 🙁 🙁 🙁 🙁

    Ace Attorney deserves Mega Millions!

  • plain and simple I’m not going to give them money for a digital copy, I’m going to buy a physical Japanese version instead.

  • bobobo bo-bobo1

    I read that as “sorry, we just don’t want your money”.

    Well fuck you too Capcom.

  • Aiddon

    ya know what, it’s better than nothing. If you CAN DL it, then do so. There is no use crying over spilled milk.

  • An Tran

    Not too upsetting. I usually get physical games, but I’m fine with a game like this as a digital release.

  • Crapcom

    All part of the Crapcom scheme.

    “Oh look, sales are suddenly way down for Ace Attorney 5. That means there’s no market so we don’t have to localize any more games. If only you people had bought it…..”