If you didn’t catch the news, the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy is a new collection of Ace Attorney games that bundles the 4th, 5th, and 6th mainline games: Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies, and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice.
(For some reason, the official website includes a beautiful image of the games’ art… in the wrong play order, as seen here, but that’s probably because Spirit of Justice’s art looks best as a centerpiece.)
It will be out in early 2024 for Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
Even though I’ve already played all three games, I’m delighted by the news, not only because it means more people can play them, but also because I believe it’s another sign that Ace Attorney’s future is brighter than ever.
We’ve been waiting for Ace Attorney 7 for a very long time. Remember back in 2017, when rumors claimed Ace Attorney 7 was coming in 2018? That obviously didn’t happen. There hasn’t been a brand-new Ace Attorney game since 2017, when The Great Ace Attorney 2 first came out in Japan, so it’s no surprise that hopes for the series were starting to dim.
I’d started to give up hope that we’d ever even see the unlocalized entries in the series, which at the time were Investigations 2 and the two Great Ace Attorney games.
All that changed in 2021 with the release of The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles. Capcom had decided that the two historical spin-offs (which hadn’t sold well) were worthy of being remastered, bundled, and translated for the first time. Chronicles even got a physical release on the Switch in North America, despite the last two mainline entries being digital-only. That was enough to make me believe in Ace Attorney’s future again, especially when Chronicles blasted past sales expectations (according to the leak, their sales expectations for Chronicles were 300k copies by 2025).
Yet with no sign of Ace Attorney 7 despite the leaks saying it was in development, many fans once again started to say the series was dead.
But what about now?
In the leaks that revealed The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles and claimed Ace Attorney 7 was also in development, the prospect of a collection containing Apollo Justice, Dual Destinies, and Spirit of Justice was mentioned only tentatively, to be decided based on the sales of the other games. Many fans went so far as to say it was confirmed to not be happening due to the expenses required to translate Dual Destinies and Spirit of Justice into all the languages Apollo Justice had been available in.
Well, it seems that’s not the case after all, because the Apollo Justice collection is on its way, in 7 different languages, with Dual Destinies and Spirit of Justice being translated into other languages for the first time (previously, Japanese and English were the only languages for those two).
Since Capcom is willing to give Ace Attorney games new translations, I’m more optimistic than ever for Ace Attorney Investigations 2’s chances of being localized.
And between The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles and the Apollo Justice Trilogy, it looks like we’re finally free from the worry that Capcom believed an Ace Attorney game would only sell if Phoenix’s name was in the title. Could we see an Ace Attorney Investigations Duology in the years ahead?
Most important of all, the biggest hurdle to a 7th mainline game was the fact that only half of the mainline series was available on current platforms. With the 3DS eShop having been shut down, the 4th, 5th, and 6th games were only available on mobile devices, and even those were unavailable for a lot of new phones.
With all 6 mainline Ace Attorney games on modern platforms, Capcom willing to go the extra step to translate entries that hadn’t been translated before, and the series seeing excellent sales (enough for them to use “from the creator of Ace Attorney” in the hopes of boosting Ghost Trick’s sales, too), I don’t see anything standing in the way of Ace Attorney 7 now.
Yes, there’s a good chance it’ll have a new director if Shu Takumi no longer wants to work on mainline Ace Attorney, since Takeshi Yamazaki left Capcom a few years ago, but there’s no reason to think Capcom couldn’t put someone else in charge – and no reason to assume the new director wouldn’t understand the series, either.
This isn’t the time for Ace Attorney doom and gloom! With The Great Ace Attorney translated and the Apollo Justice Trilogy coming next year, I say Ace Attorney optimism should be at an all-time high.
How do you feel about the current state of the Ace Attorney series and its future prospects?---
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