Why You Should Start Watching Ace Attorney!

Sunday, April 10th, 2016

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ace attorney | Phoenix Wright

Yes, I said “Start Watching!” See, this anime season we are being treated to an anime adaptation of the Ace Attorney series. I’ve often said to my friends that it would be nice if there was an Ace Attorney anime, and well, here I am in April of 2016 watching it on Crunchyroll. Ace Attorney is a series of point-and-click adventure mystery games originally for the GameBoy Advance but then released on the Nintendo DS. In any case I enjoyed the games quite a lot, so I have high hopes for the anime since the source material is solid stuff.  I have only watched the first episode so far, but the second episode was just put up so I will be checking that one out as well. I should note, I will be referring to the characters by their localized names.

ace attorney | court

Something I immediately noticed was that the animation quality and artwork was not the best. It is not the worst looking anime out there, but for a series that is known for its wacky characters bursting (sometimes literally) with personality and charm it’s a bit disappointing to see how they came out here. Maybe it is just me, but the sprites from the games seem a bit more detailed. For example, The Judge looks a lot less intimidating in the show than he did in-game. Also, it looks like they used CG animation to animate the jury, which looks a bit weird. Below is a comparison of the 3DS version of the Phoenix Wright trilogy with the anime.

Ace Attorney Judge | HD ace attorney | anime judge

It follows the story of the first game (so far)
This is the story of a new defense attorney’s rise to fame. If you have never played the games this anime will show you where it all begins. The first episode involved his first case: a murder. As a result, not too many characters were introduced. You meet Phoenix, his friend Larry, his mentor Mia, and one of many prosecutors you will be seeing throughout the series. It also has all the cross examinations, objections, and they even went the extra step to recreate the character animations right from the game!

Ace Attorney | cross examination

Lots of Easter eggs for fans of the game

Right in the beginning of the episode, and even throughout it, I saw nice little nods to future cases in the series. I guess it’s a form of foreshadowing. One in particular I liked was Phoenix’s old shirt. This may not mean much to those of you just jumping in to this series for the first time, but fans of the series know what this means….

ace attorney | ace attorney shirt

See that ‘Ryu’ shirt? I can’t wait until the anime gets to that point in the story.

Each episode seems to involve one case or a specific trial

I am merely basing this off of the preview for the next episode, but the next episode is going to be the infamous turnabout sisters case. This is where Wright meets Maya, but not under the best circumstances. Those of you who know the games know exactly what I am talking about, but I won’t spoil it for you newcomers. In any case, it looks like the episodes will be split up by trial which makes it easy to follow and re-watch.

ace attorney | Larry


You can watch Ace Attorney on Crunchyroll

About Justin Guillou

Justin joined Operation Rainfall after visiting the site numerous times and reading the articles on Xenoblade Chronicles. He enjoys searching for and collecting some of the more obscure video games out there.

  • Infophile

    I hope they don’t limit each trial to one episode. With how convoluted some of the trials get, this is a recipe for disaster.

    • Hogtree Octovish

      I’m guessing that they rushed/compressed the first episode so they could introduce Mayoi [ie. Maya], Itonokogiri [Gumshoe] and Mitsurugi [Edgeworth] in the second one.

      I mean no-one really cares about Takefumi Auchi [Winston Payne], anyway.
      And Masashi [Larry] and (ghost) Chihiro [Mia] will be in later episodes.

      [[Okay, typing out both names was annoying. But necessary.]]

      Hopefully, it’ll be Episode 2 for Arrest and initial Investigation (which it was), Ep3 First Trial, Ep4 Investigation, Ep5 Second Trial at the shortest for Turnabout Sisters.
      And Episodes 6 to 11 for Turnabout Samurai.
      [etcetera, etcetera}

      But yeah, we’ll just have to wait and see how long each (adaptation of each) story arc’ll be.

    • Infophile

      I don’t know if they’ll completely split up the investigation and trial segments between episodes. That could result in a very different feel episode-to-episode. Perhaps they’ll use flashbacks or some other device so that they can be woven together better.

  • Zelpok

    I was somewhat disappointed with the 1st episode. Maybe it was because of the pacing. But the 2nd episode was a lot better. I loved the little details they added to it, like Nick’s desperate search through the rain and the comedic bow between him and Maya. I’m looking forward to the next episode.

    • Hogtree Octovish

      As I said in my reply to Infophile (which is too long to copy and paste without taking too much room), it was probably so they could introduce Maya, Gumshoe and Edgeworth in the second episode.
      Hopefully the pacing will be better in later episodes.