Ace attorney phoenix wright

Ace attorney phoenix wright DEFAULT

Phoenix Wright

This article is about the character. For the video game, see Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. For the series, see Ace Attorney.

Video game character

Phoenix "Nick" Wright, known as Ryūichi Naruhodō (Japanese: 成歩堂 龍一, Hepburn: Naruhodō Ryūichi) in the original Japanese language versions, is a fictional defense attorney in Capcom's Ace Attorneyvideo game series. Phoenix is featured as the protagonist in the first three games of the series, appears as a supporting character in the fourth and returns as one of the protagonists for the fifth and sixth games. The character has also appeared in film, anime and manga adaptations of the series, a Japanese series of musicals and stage plays, and crossover video games such as Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Project X Zone 2, Puzzle Fighter, and Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3.

Conception and creation[edit]

A 2011 photograph of Shu Takumi, holding a microphone
Shu Takumi created Phoenix Wright

The idea of a lawyer was conceived when director Shu Takumi was searching for ideas for a game in which the player could discover lies or contradictions in statements.[13] Takumi used his privilege as the director to cast himself as Phoenix. Phoenix was a private investigator who finds a body at his client's office and is arrested. As the lawyer who is assigned to his case is useless, Phoenix takes up his own defense. One staff member suggested that Phoenix should be a hamster; while this didn't happen, this early version of Phoenix did have a pet hamster.[14]

Wright's Japanese given name, Ryūichi, alludes to the mythical dragon with its use of ryu (竜).[15] His Japanese surname, Naruhodō, references the Japanese expression naruhodo (なるほど), which equates to the English "I see". This phrase is often used in Japan to express attentiveness to the subject at hand. Takumi chose the phrase to highlight Wright's inexperience; even though his name reads "I see", he may not in fact understand what is happening, something which may also be true of people using the phrase. It is also commonly used in mystery novels when investigating, a core gameplay concept of the series.[16][17]

In English versions, Wright's name was localized to present a similar meaning to English-speaking audiences. His first name is also a mythical reference: to the phoenix, known for "rising from the ashes", an allusion to his almost impossible comebacks, or "turnabouts", during trials. This is referenced in the first game, in which the fifth case is titled "Rise from the Ashes". His surname is a pun, allowing for wordplay (such as "Right, Wright?" and "Phoenix Wrong").[16] Early brainstorming suggestions for Phoenix's name included "Cole" and "Wilton", but "Phoenix" was chosen as a name that would "stand out". The nickname "Nick" (used by his partner, Maya Fey) was chosen based on its believability and similarity to the sound of "Phoenix".[18]

Characteristics and backstory[edit]

At the time of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Phoenix is a rookie defense attorney who usually accepts murdercases, attempting to exonerate his clients when there is seemingly incontrovertible evidence and testimony against them.[19] Described as "goofy and single-minded", he often encounters unusual situations. Rather than simply arguing his case, Phoenix uses detective skills to gather relevant evidence and investigate the crime scene.[20]

When he was in grade school, he was accused of stealing Miles Edgeworth's lunch money, and since he was in a small school, there was a class trial. During the trial, Edgeworth and Larry Butz stood up for Wright, saying the teacher and students had no evidence of Wright's guilt. The class trial was dismissed and the three students became best friends until Edgeworth moved away following his father's murder. Fifteen years later, Larry would reveal that he was the one who stole Edgeworth's money that day, paying it back in full. While Wright is surprised, Edgeworth gives the appearance that he knew Larry stole his money all along.

While a college student at Ivy University, Phoenix is accused of murder and successfully defended by a defense attorney named Mia Fey, who finds the true culprit to be Phoenix's apparent girlfriend and Mia's first cousin, Dahlia Hawthorne. After passing the bar exam, Phoenix becomes a defense attorney himself under Mia's law firm, Fey & Co. Following Mia's murder, Phoenix takes over the law firm, naming it Wright and Co., and also takes Mia's sister, a spirit medium named Maya, under his wing. Maya becomes Phoenix's assistant and legal aide, assisting him by setting him up with clients, and by searching for information and clues during cases. As the years pass, Phoenix takes on several cases to prove the innocence of those wrongly accused of murder, developing a name and reputation for himself. He also helps out Maya with the well-being of her younger cousin, Pearl, after her mother's arrest. However, in one case, he inadvertently presents forged evidence to the court, not knowing it was forged until it was too late, and is forced to turn in his attorney's badge. Adopting a young girl named Trucy Enigmar as his daughter, Phoenix sets up the Wright Talent Agency, turning to playing piano and poker games for a source of income.

Seven years later, Phoenix is accused of murdering a man named Shadi Smith, who has no known past and is simply a wanderer. Phoenix hires a rookie defense attorney named Apollo Justice, who works for Phoenix's friend, Kristoph Gavin, a renowned defense attorney. During the trial, Apollo and Phoenix reveal that Phoenix had been set up, and Kristoph was the real murderer. After he successfully defends Phoenix in court, Apollo is brought into the Wright Talent Agency as their attorney, Trucy changing the name to the Wright Anything Agency. Phoenix continues to work behind the scenes, helping to bring the truth behind his disbarment to light, as well as implement a jury system to the fictional justice system.[21] In the years after losing his badge, Phoenix also develops a talent for poker, which he plays to determine the intents of those around him by reading their body language ("tells"), and is said to be nigh unbeatable at it.

After clearing his name, Phoenix retakes the bar exam, regaining his badge and once again becoming a defense attorney. He also retains Apollo Justice as a protégé, and takes newcomer Athena Cykes under his wing as the newest junior attorney for the Wright Anything Agency. He later reunites with Maya in the fictional Kingdom of Khura'in and helps to change the country's legal system, after which point they become legal partners once again.


Ace Attorney video games[edit]

In the first game, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Phoenix must contend with the loss of his mentor and fellow defense attorney Mia Fey.[22] Throughout the game, Phoenix is hired to defend various people of murder, including his friend Larry Butz and Mia's younger sister Maya Fey. The game culminates with Phoenix defending rival prosecutor Miles Edgeworth from being convicted for the murder of Robert Hammond, an old defense attorney who was involved in the DL-6 case, wherein Edgeworth's father was murdered. Going up against Edgeworth's mentor, Manfred von Karma, Phoenix successfully defends his friend and clears him of all charges, and destroys von Karma's 40 year-long winning streak.

In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice for All, Phoenix once again defends Maya, and faces the prosecutor and daughter of Manfred von Karma, 18-year-old legal prodigy Franziska.[19] In the game's climax, Maya is kidnapped by a hitman, forcing Phoenix to make the true killer admit his guilt, which results in his first loss. In the course of the game, Phoenix receives a magic Magatama from Pearl that is able to reveal whether a person is hiding a secret in their heart, involving the use of Psyche Locks.

In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Trials and Tribulations, it is revealed that Phoenix was framed for the murder of his girlfriend's ex-lover while in college. He was defended by Mia Fey, who had not taken a case since her first against Edgeworth the year before. Mia exposes the true murderer as Phoenix's girlfriend, Dahlia Hawthorne, who is later executed. Through Mia's actions and defense, Phoenix is inspired to switch his major to law. Phoenix must also contend with a fake "Phoenix" who posed as him in court and got his friend and former client, Maggey Byrde, a guilty verdict. Phoenix also faces the mysterious Godot, a prosecutor who appears to harbor a grudge towards him. It is revealed in the final case, that during his years at the university, he was dating Iris, a temple nun and Dahlia's twin, who posed as her sister to save Phoenix's life from the wrath of Dahlia.

During a case seven years prior to the events of Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, two months after Trials and Tribulations, he was forced to forfeit his attorney's badge after presenting evidence that, unknown to him, was forged. Two weeks later, he adopted Trucy Enigmar after her father, his client Shadi Enigmar, became a fugitive. Trucy then renames his office the "Wright Talent Agency", becoming its CEO and one half of the represented talent, with Phoenix being the other half. At the time Apollo Justice takes place, he works as a pianist and plays poker at the Borscht Bowl Club. After being accused of murder himself and being successfully defended by rookie defense attorney Apollo Justice, he hires Apollo, reopening his law office as the "Wright Anything Agency".[23] Wright uses the "MASON System" computer program to assist the player in piecing together the evidence from both past and present for the game's final case, where the circumstances regarding the day he was disbarred are fully explained.[24]

Wright returns as the protagonist in the fifth main series installment, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies. Having regained his attorney's badge, he works together on cases with both Apollo Justice and newcomer Athena Cykes, striving to put the "Dark Age of the Law" to an end once and for all.

In the sixth game in the series, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice, Phoenix travels to the Kingdom of Khura'in, where he reunites with Maya Fey, and discovers that defense attorneys are reviled throughout the kingdom, having a reputation of abiding criminals. He successfully defends his young tour guide and Maya when they are both accused of murder, putting himself at severe risk of falling afoul of the Kingdom's Defense Culpability Act, which states that defense attorneys of parties found guilty are to receive the same sentence as their client. Phoenix's actions begin the wheels of revolution turning, when he encounters a rebel group known as the Defiant Dragons, and finds out that their leader, a once renowned defense attorney named Dhurke Sahdmadhi, aims to restore the legal system to its proper state.

Other appearances[edit]

Phoenix Wright appears in a Japanese manga adaptation of the series, written by Kenji Kuroda, illustrated by Kazuo Maekawa and published by Kodansha. The series was published in the United States by Kodansha USA. An additional manga, published by Del Rey Manga, was released in the United States.[25]

A Japanese musical based on the series, Ace Attorney – Truth Resurrected, staged by the all-female troupe Takarazuka Revue, cast actor Tomu Ranju as Phoenix Wright, using the English name rather than the Japanese "Ryūichi Naruhodō", featuring Phoenix in a romantic relationship with Leona Clyde, an original character based on Lana Skye. A sequel, Ace Attorney 2 – Truth Resurrected, Again, was produced after the first musical sold out on the first day.[26] Two Japanese stage plays have additionally been performed by the Super Eccentric Theater in which Sho Kato portrays Phoenix.[27]

Hiroki Narimiya portrays Phoenix in the 2012 live-action film Ace Attorney. The film loosely adapts the events of the first game, including Phoenix's first case, his meeting with Maya, and his defense of Edgeworth; the end credits sequence additionally adapt elements of the second game.

Phoenix appears as the lead character of the 2016 Ace Attorney anime series, which adapts the events of the first three games in the series over two seasons. He is voiced by Yūki Kaji in Japanese and Eric Vale in English. Phoenix also makes a background cameo appearance in the episode "Killing a Domineering Grannie" of Scissor Seven.

Within his own series, Phoenix makes a cameo appearance in Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth, a game starring his longtime rival Miles Edgeworth, as well as in its sequel, Ace Attorney Investigations 2. He also stars alongside Professor Hershel Layton in the 2012 Nintendo 3DS title, Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, developed by Level-5; in the Japanese dub of the game, Narimiya reprised his role from the live-action film.

The developers of the crossover fighting game, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars, had wanted to include Phoenix along with Franziska von Karma as a character on the roster, but had trouble designing additional moves besides his finger-pointing gesture. Though they had come up with an attack that used his catch-phrase "Igiari!" ("Objection!" in English), with the letters themselves used to attack the opponent, they found that localization would have changed the four-character phrase (in kanji) to a nine-letter word and would have unbalanced the game.[28] Phoenix was also considered for inclusion as a playable fighter in Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds,[29] appearing alongside Miles Edgeworth as a cameo in She-Hulk's arcade mode ending.[30] He appears as a playable character in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3. His fighting style sees him gather evidence on the field which he can use to either attack his opponent or save for a powerful courtroom confrontation.[31][32][33]

Phoenix, along with Franziska von Karma, Mia Fey and Miles Edgeworth, appear as cards in the game SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters DS. Both Phoenix and his assistant Maya Fey also appear as a two in one solo unit in the crossover tactical role-playing game Project X Zone 2. Phoenix is mentioned in the Danganronpa series entries Goodbye Despair and Togami by Sonia Nevermind.


Phoenix Wright has generally been praised by critics for being a likeable character with a realistic profession. However, the older Phoenix Wright seen in Apollo Justice has been criticized as "aloof and inscrutable", with "his character's development...lost along the wayside."[34]GameDaily called him the eighth greatest Capcom character, citing how he perseveres in the face of hardships.[35] They also named him 20th on their "Top 25 Gaming Hunks."[36] They included his hairstyle in the list of "weirdest hairstyles in gaming."[37]Nintendo Power listed Phoenix as their 10th favourite hero, stating that while lawyers get a bad rap, Phoenix is one who defends the innocent.[38] In 2009, GameSpot chose him as one of the characters to compete in their poll for the title of "All Time Greatest Game Hero".[39] His appearance in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 was also positively received, with MetroGameCentral describing him as "the star of the show."[40] In 2012, GamesRadar ranked him as the 55th best hero in video games[41] while UGO Networks ranked him as the 57th best hero in entertainment in 2010.[42] GamesRadar also included him in a list of "The 30 best Capcom characters of the last 30 years", remarking that he has no power, and "isn't even that good of a lawyer when he starts out, but watching him grow is part of why we love him.".[43] The San Francisco Chronicle noted that Phoenix is "popularly interpreted as bisexual" and his relationship with Edgeworth "as either queer-platonic or romantic", highlighting its potential to become "one of the highest-profile same-sex parenthood stories in gaming history and a significant step forward in representation" if made official.[44]

Phoenix Wright's signature mannerisms, such as finger-pointing and cries of "Objection!", have become well-known, and were parodied in episodes of anime such as The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt, No Game No Life and Maria Holic.[45] Multiple video game characters have been compared with Phoenix based on their ideas of standing on trials including Makoto Naegi from Danganronpa or Takayuki Yagami from Judgment.[46][47][48][49][50][51]


  1. ^Fujita, James (February 24, 2021). "Capcom Will Present Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Play in May". OtaQuest. Retrieved February 24, 2021.
  2. ^ abcdef"Phoenix Wright Voices (Ace Attorney)". Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 21 April 2020. A green check mark indicates that a role has been confirmed using a screenshot (or collage of screenshots) of the title's list of voice actors and their respective characters found in its closing credits and/or other reliable sources of information.CS1 maint: postscript (link)
  3. ^Sam Riegel [@samriegel] (October 13, 2011). "Just got word I can officially announce I'm the voice of Phoenix Wright in UMvC3! OBJECTION!" (Tweet). Retrieved May 12, 2016 – via Twitter.
  4. ^Sam Riegel [@samriegel] (October 2, 2013). "Look! It's me! In a video game! ... #PhoenixWrightAceAttorney5" (Tweet). Retrieved May 13, 2016 – via Twitter.
  5. ^Sam Riegel [@samriegel] (May 11, 2016). "All rise! #AceAttorney6 is now in session!" (Tweet). Retrieved May 12, 2016 – via Twitter.
  6. ^@UnitedVoices_ (January 29, 2015). "Congrats @mrtrevorwhite @navgtr nomination for PERFORMANCE IN A COMEDY LEAD Professor Layton Vs. Phoenix Wright!" (Tweet). Retrieved May 31, 2020 – via Twitter.
  7. ^"Ace Attorney - English Dub Cast Announcement". Funimation - Blog!. Retrieved 21 April 2020.
  8. ^"Zach LeBlanc | Resume". Retrieved August 26, 2018.
  9. ^"『PROJECT X ZONE 2:BRAVE NEW WORLD(プロジェクト クロスゾーン2:ブレイブニューワールド)』新たな参戦キャラクターを公開!!" (in Japanese). Famitsu. May 13, 2015. Retrieved May 14, 2015.
  10. ^"CAPCOM:逆転裁判6 公式サイト". (in Japanese). Retrieved August 18, 2018.
  11. ^"Ryūichi Naruhodō's Character page on the official Japanese UMvC3 website". Archived from the original on 2011-10-15.
  12. ^"Ace Attorney Anime's Cast, Staff Announced (Updated)". Anime News Network. December 18, 2015. Retrieved December 20, 2015.
  13. ^Totilo, Stephen (2007-10-30). "'Phoenix Wright' Sends Gamers To Court; Jack Black Is A 'Brutal Legend' And More, In GameFile". MTV. Retrieved 2009-07-31.
  14. ^Hsu, Janet (2014-10-31). "Ace Attorney Trilogy - Surprising Tidbits You Never Knew!". Capcom. Archived from the original on 2015-09-16. Retrieved 2015-10-02.
  15. ^Kalata, Kurt; Sotenga. "Hardcore Gaming 101: Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney / Gyakuten Saiban". Hardcore Gaming 101. Retrieved 2009-07-29.
  16. ^ abConsalvo, Mia (2009-03-10). "Persistence meets Performance: Phoenix Wright, Ace Attorney". ETC-Press. Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
  17. ^"Shuu Takumi Interview" (in Japanese). Famitsu. 2006-06-23. Retrieved 2009-08-08.
  18. ^Hoffman, Chris (2007-01-18). "On the Wright Track: The Writers of Phoenix Wright's Sequel Discuss Their New Case". Archived from the original on 2007-10-12. Retrieved 2009-07-29.
  19. ^ abHerold, Charles (2007-01-25). "GAME THEORY; Rough (but Silly) Justice and Striking (Also Silly) Moves". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-31.
  20. ^Rahman, Azizul (2009-03-08). "Law and laughter". The Star. Archived from the original on 2011-06-04. Retrieved 2009-07-30.
  21. ^Capcom (2009-09-14). Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney (Nintendo DS). Capcom. Level/area: Episode 4 – Turnabout Succession.
  22. ^Capcom (2001-10-11). Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (Nintendo DS). Capcom. Level/area: Episode 1 – The First Turnabout.
  23. ^Capcom (2009-04-12). Ace Attorney: Apollo Justice (Nintendo DS). Capcom. Level/area: Episode 2 – Turnabout Corner.
  24. ^Capcom (2009-09-14). Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney (Nintendo DS). Capcom. Level/area: Episode 4 – Turnabout Succession.
  25. ^Snow, Jean (2008-07-30). "Phoenix Wright Manga Comes to America". Wired. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  26. ^Ashcraft, Brian (2009-06-11). "Check Out Cross-Dressing Phoenix Wright, Part 2". Kotaku. Retrieved 2009-08-03.
  27. ^Dennison, Kara (2018-11-26). "Lawyers Go for the Gold in New Ace Attorney Stage Show". Crunchyroll. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  28. ^"Fighting Talk with Ryota Niitsuma, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom's Producer". NGamer. October 2009. p. 35.
  29. ^Westbrook, Logan (2011-01-24). "MvC 3 Producer Explains Dead Rising's Frank West's Absence". The Escapist. Retrieved 2011-02-12.
  30. ^Tolito, Stephan (2011-02-12). "Two Capcom Favorites Make A Surprise Appearance In Marvel Vs. Capcom 3". Kotaku. Retrieved 2011-02-12.
  31. ^Miller, Patrick (2011-07-20). "Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 Announced, Full Roster Leaked". PC World. Retrieved 2011-07-20.
  32. ^North, Dale (2011-07-21). "SDCC: Interview: Niitsuma on Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3". Destructoid. Retrieved 2011-07-21.
  33. ^"Nova and Phoenix Wright Join Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 | Marvel Heroes Games | News". 2011-10-13. Retrieved 2012-08-04.
  34. ^Wild, Kim (2008-05-30). "review: Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney". Adventure Gamers. Retrieved 2009-08-03.
  35. ^Mitchell, Richard (2012-06-26). "Top 25 Capcom Characters of All Time". GameDaily. Archived from the original on April 5, 2009. Retrieved 2012-08-04.
  36. ^Mitchell, Richard (2012-06-26). "Top 25 Gaming Hunks". GameDaily. Archived from the original on April 11, 2009. Retrieved 2012-08-04.
  37. ^Mitchell, Richard (2012-06-26). "Weirdest Hairstyles In Gaming". GameDaily. Archived from the original on December 21, 2008. Retrieved 2012-08-04.
  38. ^Nintendo Power 250th issue!. South San Francisco, California: Future US. 2010. pp. 40, 41.
  39. ^"All Time Greatest Game Hero - The Standings". GameSpot. Archived from the original on July 31, 2012. Retrieved April 20, 2013.
  40. ^Jenkins, David (15 February 2012). "Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 PS Vita review - portable battle". GameCentral. Metro. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
  41. ^"100 best heroes in video games". GamesRadar. Retrieved April 20, 2013.
  42. ^"Best Heroes of All Time". UGO Networks. January 21, 2010. Archived from the original on August 25, 2012. Retrieved July 27, 2013.
  43. ^"The 30 best Capcom characters of the last 30 years". GamesRadar. Future plc. June 25, 2013. Retrieved May 4, 2014.
  44. ^Rouner, Jef; Nudo, Meredith (2021-05-30). "'Dadification' rises in importance as video games embrace queer romance". San Francisco Chronicle. Archived from the original on 2021-06-04.
  45. ^Ashcraft, Brian (2007-06-18). "The Melancholy of Gyakuten Saiban". Kotaku. Archived from the original on February 3, 2010. Retrieved 2009-08-03.
  46. ^McShea, Tom (11 February 2014). "DanganRonpa: Trigger Happy Havoc Review – GameSpot". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Archived from the original on 18 February 2014. Retrieved 24 March 2014.
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  50. ^"Judgment Review - Yakuza: Ace Attorney". The Gamer. Retrieved March 6, 2020.
  51. ^"Judgment PS4 review – Yakuza meets Phoenix Wright". Metro. Retrieved March 6, 2020.

Phoenix Wright V · T · F


Art student at Ivy University (lapsed)
Law student at Ivy University (lapsed)
Defense attorney (Aug. 3, 2016 - Apr. 19, 2019)
Pianist (2019 - late 2026/early 2027)
Professional poker player (2019 - c. late 2026/early 2027)
Chair of the Jurist System Simulated Court Committee (lapsed)
Defense attorney (July 20, 2027 - )

Reckoned birth year(s) (this is for age comparison purposes, and so may look odd; click on the question mark for details)?


Documented age range (as recorded in court record profiles and case files)

21* (Turnabout Memories)- 35* (Turnabout Time Traveler)

Eye color

Dark blue* (sometimes variously portrayed as blue, teal, brown, black, or gray)

Height (from official guidebooks)

5'9"; 176 cm


Miles Edgeworth (childhood friend, rival prosecutor, & former client)
Larry Butz (childhood friend & former client)
Iris (ex-girlfriend, admirer, & former client; arrested)
Mia Fey (close friend, investigative partner, mentor, superior, co-counsel, & former defense attorney; deceased)
Maya Fey (close friend, assistant, investigative partner, co-counsel, andformerclient)
Dick Gumshoe (lead detective for majority of Wright's cases)
Will Powers (former client)
Lotta Hart (freelance journalist & recurring witness)
Ema Skye (former investigative partner & co-counsel)
Pearl Fey (investigative partner & Maya's cousin)
Maggey Byrde (former client & temporary co-counsel)
Adrian Andrews (acquaintance from a previous case)
Apollo Justice (apprentice, subordinate, defense attorney, & temporary rival attorney)
Thalassa Gramarye (Justice & Trucy's biological mother)
Guy Eldoon (owner of local noodle stand)
Ahlbi Ur'gaid (tour guide & former client)
Hershel Layton (investigative partner & temporary rival inquisitor)* (Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)
Luke Triton (investigative partner & Layton's assistant)* (Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)
Espella Cantabella (investigative partner & former client)* (Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)

Nick* (by Larry Butz & Maya Fey)
Feenie* (by Dahlia Hawthorne & Iris)
26381* (attorney's badge number)
Pal* (by Dick Gumshoe & Maya Fey)
Sir* (by the Gatewater bellboy, Maggey Byrde, & Max Galactica)
My boy* (by Marvin Grossberg)
Mr. Attorney* (by April May, Richard Wellington, Max Galactica, Regina Berry, Acro, Shelly de Killer, & Trucy Enigmar)
Mr. Lawyer* (by Redd White, Lotta Hart, Mimi Miney, Matt Engarde, Ron DeLite, & the chief of Criminal Affairs)
Mr. Wrong* (by Redd White)
Whippersnapper* (by Wendy Oldbag)
Evildoer* (by Cody Hackins)
City Boy* (by Maya Fey & Lotta Hart)
Keith/Keithy-boy* (by Yanni Yogi)
Rookie* (by Angel Starr & Lana Skye)
Wrighto* (by Damon Gant & (temporarily) by Ema Skye)
Good sir* (by Morgan Fey)
Mr. Nick* (by Pearl Fey)
Fool* (by Franziska von Karma & Luke Atmey)
Mr. Smith* (by Mimi Miney)
Porcupine head* (by Max Galactica)
Sweetie* (by Max Galactica)
Mr. Lawyer dude* (by Matt Engarde)
Trite* (by Godot)
Nicky boy* (by Desirée DeLite)
Sir Lawyer* (by Luke Atmey)
Amigo* (by Godot)
Ace Attorney* (self-styled)
Daddy* (by Trucy Wright)
Herr Lawyer* (by Klavier Gavin)
Lord Daddy* (by Valant Gramarye)
Mr. Ex-Attorney* (by Zak Gramarye)
Turnabout Terror* (by the judge & Athena Cykes)
Boss* (by Maya Fey & Athena Cykes)
Wright-dono* (by Simon Blackquill)
Blue Boy* (by Norma DePlume)
Barbed Head* (by Rayfa Padma Khura'in)
Lawyer-man* (by Pees'lubn Andistan'dhin)
Lawyer-trash* (by Pees'lubn Andistan'dhin)
The Fighting Phoenix* (by Kingdom of Khura'in)
White* (by Inga Karkhuul Khura'in)
Barbed One* (by Ga'ran Sigatar Khura'in)
Dead lawyer walking* (by Rayfa Padma Khura'in & Nahyuta Sahdmadhi)
PW* (by Datz Are'bal)
Malignant tumor* (by Pierce Nichody)
Sir Apprentice Baker* (by Zacharias Barnham; Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)
Sir Blue Knight* (by Zacharias Barnham; Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)
Mr. Baker* (by the Labyrinthian judge; Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)
Sir Baker* (by Zacharias Barnham; Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney only)

Harry Butz* (by Dick Gumshoe)
Hairy Butz* (by Dick Gumshoe)
Smarty-pants* (by Dick Gumshoe)
Naughty Mr. Lawyer* (by April May)
Sherlock Holmes II* (self-styled)
Mr. Big Detective* (by April May)
Little shrimp* (by April May)
Stinking lawyer* (by April May)
Spiky-head* (by April May)
Bottom-feeding, scum-sucking lawyer* (by April May)
Upstart* (by Miles Edgeworth)
Amateur* (by Miles Edgeworth)
Detective* (by the bellboy)
Spiky-haired man* (by Redd White)
Silly Lawyer* (by Redd White)
Gramps* (by Maya Fey)
Snipperwhapper* (by Wendy Oldbag)
Lame-o-man* (by Cody Hackins)
Spiky-haired geezer* (by Cody Hackins)
Mia Fey* (mistakenly by Ema Skye)
The undefeated defense attorney* (by Ema Skye)
Mr. head-in-the-fluffy-pink-clouds Lawyer* (by Dick Gumshoe)
The Phoenix* (self-styled)
Mr. Left* (by the judge)[1]
Mr. Wry* (by Mia Fey)
Mr. High-and-Mighty* (by Lotta Hart)
Mr. Smarty* (by Maya Fey)
Mr. Smith, Esquire* (by Mimi Miney)
Mush-headed, feeble-minded baboon* (by Richard Wellington)
Sweetie's driver* (by Max Galactica)
Old stiff lips* (by Moe)
Naruhodo A. Wrighto* (by Maya Fey)
8-bit excuse for an attorney* (by Trilo Quist (Benjamin Woodman))
Buttface* (by Trilo Quist(Benjamin Woodman))
Mr. Ambulance Chaser* (by Trilo Quist (Benjamin Woodman))
Mr. Wright All The Time* (by Moe)
Numbskull* (by Trilo Quist (Benjamin Woodman))
Heartless, cruel man* (by a court audience member)
Poopyhead* (by a court audience member)
Old fart* (by Maya Fey)
Mr. Wright, esquire* (by Matt Engarde)
Piddling evidence hog* (by Maya Fey)
Yellow-bellied chicken liver* (by Lotta Hart)
Baboon-boy* (by Wendy Oldbag, Miles Edgeworth, & the judge)
Half-witted clot* (by Victor Kudo)
Spikey-haired yahoo* (by Victor Kudo)
Blue-suited young upstart* (by Victor Kudo)
Young shark* (by Victor Kudo)
Noisy brat* (by Victor Kudo)
Spikey-haired brat* (by Victor Kudo)
Professor Nick* (by Maya Fey)
Dr. Wright* (by Dick Gumshoe, Maya Fey, Trucy Wright, & self-styled)
Porcu-headed lawyer* (by Godot)
Spikey* (by Furio Tigre)
Guy in the blue* (by Furio Tigre)
Mr. Blue Suits* (by Bikini)
Lawyer Boy* (by Godot)
Mr. Smarty* (by Maya Fey)
Spiky-haired jerk* (by Dahlia Hawthorne)
Trite little man* (by Franziska von Karma)
Guy in the blue suit* (by Larry Butz)
"A certain defense attorney"* (by Miles Edgeworth)
"That man"* (by Miles Edgeworth)
Herr Attorney/Wright* (by Klavier Gavin)
Old boy in the blue suit with the spiky hair* (by Trucy Enigmar & Kristoph Gavin)
Old boy* (by Trucy Enigmar)
The Forgin' Attorney* (self-styled)
Daddy-O* (by Mr. Hat (Trucy Wright))
O Great Ex-Attorney* (by Zak Gramarye)
Faustian forging friend* (by Valant Gramarye)
Phoenix Van Winkle* (by Gaspen Payne)
Blue Monkey* (by Athena Cykes)

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney

2001 visual novel adventure video game by Capcom

This article is about the video game. For the character, see Phoenix Wright. For the video game series, see Ace Attorney. For the live action film, see Ace Attorney (film). For the animated series, see Ace Attorney (TV series).

2001 video game

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney
Phoenix Wright - Ace Attorney Coverart.png

North American Nintendo DS box art featuring (clockwise from upper left) the judge, Miles Edgeworth, Phoenix Wright, and Maya Fey

Developer(s)Capcom Production Studio 4
Director(s)Shu Takumi
Programmer(s)Noriyuki Otani
  • Kumiko Suekane
  • Tatsuro Iwamoto
Writer(s)Shu Takumi
  • Masakazu Sugimori
  • Naoto Tanaka (DS)
SeriesAce Attorney
Platform(s)Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, Windows, Wii, iOS, Android, Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One

October 12, 2001

  • Game Boy AdvanceNintendo DS
    • JP: September 15, 2005
    • NA: October 12, 2005
    • EU: March 16, 2006
  • Episodes 1-4
    • JP: December 15, 2009
    • NA: January 11, 2010
    • PAL: January 15, 2010
    Episode 5
    • JP: March 16, 2010
    • NA: May 24, 2010
    • PAL: May 2010
    • JP: December 21, 2009
    • NA: May 24, 2010
    Trilogy HDAndroidNintendo 3DS
    • JP: April 17, 2014
    • NA: December 9, 2014
    • EU: December 11, 2014
    • AU: December 12, 2014
    Switch, PS4, Xbox One
    • JP: February 21, 2019
    • WW: April 9, 2019
Genre(s)Adventure, visual novel

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney[a] is a visual noveladventure game developed by Capcom Production Studio 4[2] and published by Capcom. It was released in 2001 for the Game Boy Advance in Japan and has been ported to multiple platforms. The 2005 Nintendo DS version, titled Gyakuten Saiban Yomigaeru Gyakuten in Japan, introduced an English language option, and was the first time the game was released in North America and Europe. It is the first entry in the Ace Attorney series; several sequels and spin-offs were produced, while this game has seen further ports and remasters for computers, game consoles, and mobile devices.

The story follows Phoenix Wright, a rookiedefense attorney who attempts to have his clients declared "not guilty". Among other characters are Phoenix's boss, Mia Fey; his assistant and Mia's sister, Maya; and prosecutorMiles Edgeworth. The player controls Phoenix through two sets of sections: investigations and courtroom trials. During investigations they gather information and evidence. During trials they cross-examine witnesses, and answer questions from the judge, the prosecutor, and the witnesses. The story is split into five cases. The fifth was introduced in the Nintendo DS version to take advantage of gameplay elements using the handheld's touchscreen not available in the original Game Boy Advance version.

A team of seven developed the game over the course of ten months. Written and directed by Shu Takumi, it was originally planned as a Game Boy Color game about a private investigator. The game was designed to be simple; Takumi wanted it easy enough that even his mother could play. While the original version of the game takes place in Japan, the localization is set in the United States; this became an issue when localizing later games, where the Japanese setting was more obvious.

Generally, the game has been positively received by critics who praised its premise, writing, characters and presentation. The game has been a commercial success both in Japan and internationally. The release sales in North America broke expectations, and the software became difficult to find in stores shortly after its release, as a result. Other media based on the game have been produced. It has been credited with helping to popularise visual novels in the Western world. A manga series premiered in 2006, a film adaptation of the game, titled Ace Attorney, premiered in 2012, and an anime series adaptation aired between 2016–2019.


A cross-examination in the game, showing the witness on the top screen. The player can move between statements, press the witness for details, or present evidence that contradicts the testimony.

See also: Gameplay in the Ace Attorney series

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney is a visual noveladventure game[3] where the player takes the role of Phoenix Wright, a rookiedefense attorney, and attempts to defend their clients in five cases. These cases are played in a specific order. After finishing them, the player can re-play them in any order.[4] Each case begins with an opening cinematic cutscene often depicting a murder;[5] shortly thereafter, the player is given the job of defending the prime suspect in the case.[4] The gameplay is divided into two sections, investigations and courtroom trials.[6]

During investigations, which usually take place before or between trial sessions, the player gathers information and evidence by talking to characters such as their client, witnesses, and the police.[6] The player can move a cursor to examine various things in the environment.[7] By using a menu the player can move to different locations, examine evidence, and present evidence to other characters.[6] By showing certain pieces of evidence to some witnesses, the player can access new information.[8]

In the game's fifth case, created for the DS version and used in all subsequent releases, the player is able to examine evidence more closely, rotating it to view it from all sides, and zooming in or out on it using touchscreen controls; they are also able to move a cursor to investigate specific parts of the evidence. The fifth case also features forensics tests the player can use at crime scenes to find clues. The player can spray luminol by tapping areas they want to examine on the touch screen allowing them to see otherwise invisible blood stains. They can touch the touch screen to apply aluminum flake powder to search for finger prints. After applying it, they can blow into the microphone to reveal the prints.[9] Once the player has gathered enough evidence, the investigation section ends.[10]

During the courtroom trials, the player aims to prove their clients' innocence; to do so, they cross-examine witnesses.[6] During these cross-examinations, the player aims to uncover lies and inconsistencies in the witnesses' testimony. They are able to go back and forth between the different statements in the testimony and can press the witness for more details about a statement. When the player finds an inconsistency, they can present a piece of evidence that contradicts the statement.[11] In the Nintendo DS version, the player can choose to press and present by using vocal commands.[6] In the Wii version, players have the option to present evidence by swinging the Wii Remote.[12] At certain points, the player has to answer questions from the judge, the witnesses, or the prosecutor through a multiple-choice answer selection, or by presenting evidence that supports Wright's claims.[6] A number of exclamation marks are shown on the screen; if the player presents an incorrect piece of evidence, one of them disappears. If they all disappear, the client is found guilty and the player must restart.[13] When the player solves a case, they unlock a new one to play.[14]


See also: List of Ace Attorney characters

Phoenix Wright, a newly hired defense attorney at the Fey & Co. law firm, agrees to represent his childhood friend Larry Butz, who has been charged with the murder of his girlfriend, Cindy Stone. With the help of his boss and mentor, Mia Fey, Phoenix proves that Frank Sahwit, the prosecution's star witness, is the real murderer.

Shortly thereafter, Mia is killed in her office. Her younger sister Maya is arrested after the police find her name on a note left by Mia. Phoenix takes her case, facing off against Miles Edgeworth, a skilled prosecutor Phoenix knows from childhood. Phoenix manages to identify Redd White, a professional blackmailer, as the real killer, only to find himself charged with the killing instead. Representing himself, he exposes White in court and gets justice for Mia. In gratitude, Maya becomes Phoenix's assistant.

His reputation established, Phoenix takes on another case, this time defending Will Powers, the lead actor in the Steel Samurai children's TV show, against accusations that he killed his co-star, Jack Hammer. It is revealed that Dee Vasquez, the show's producer, committed the murder in self-defense after Hammer tried to kill her and frame Powers for her death.

On Christmas, Edgeworth is arrested for the murder of attorney Robert Hammond. After relenting for Phoenix's help after an initial refusal, Wright faces Edgeworth's mentor Manfred von Karma, who has not lost a single case in his forty-year career. Phoenix discovers that former bailiff Yanni Yogi shot Hammond while Von Karma provided Yogi with the gun. Years earlier, Edgeworth's father Gregory ruined Von Karma's spotless record when he convinced a judge to penalize Karma for misconduct. Unable to deal with such a blemish on his legacy, Karma murdered Gregory in cold blood, leaving Miles to believe he himself was responsible, while Yogi was publicly blamed and convinced by Hammond, his attorney, to fake insanity which got him acquitted of all charges, making the case unsolved till that very day. After Von Karma suffers a breakdown in court and confesses to the cover-up and for murdering Gregory, Edgeworth is set free. Following the trial, Phoenix explains that Edgeworth motivated him to become an attorney after he defended Phoenix from a false theft accusation as children. However, Edgeworth decided to become Von Karma's pupil following his father's murder after being motivated by his hatred of criminals. After the case, it was revealed that Larry was the true culprit of the theft. Nevertheless, Edgeworth decides to rethink whether or not he should resume his previous duties. Meanwhile, Maya decides to return to her home village to finish her spirit medium training.

In a fifth and final case added for the Nintendo DS and subsequent releases, Phoenix is hired by teenager Ema Skye to defend her sister Lana, the head of the prosecutor's office. Skye is accused of murdering detective Bruce Goodman, who was found in the trunk of Edgeworth's car. Together with Ema, Phoenix traces the origins of the murder to an incident two years prior, when a serial killer named Joe Darke allegedly murdered prosecutor Neil Marshall while trying to escape custody. Phoenix tricks Damon Gant, the Chief of Police, into revealing that he murdered Marshall and framed Ema for the crime in order to blackmail Lana into doing his bidding, and Gant confesses to killing Goodman after he requested that the case be reopened. Though Lana is cleared of murder charges, she agrees to resign her post to face judgement for protecting Gant. With Ema being sent to Europe to continue training as a forensic investigator, Phoenix looks forward to continuing his career defending the innocent.


It took a team of seven people ten months to develop Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney.[15] It was directed by Shu Takumi and produced by Atsushi Inaba,[16][17] with music by Masakazu Sugimori.[18] Kumiko Suekane designed the characters, with art by Tatsuro Iwamoto.[19][20][21] In 2000, after Takumi had finished his work on Dino Crisis 2, his boss, Shinji Mikami, gave him six months to create any type of game he wanted. Takumi had originally joined Capcom wanting to make mystery and adventure games and felt this was a big chance to make his mark as a creator.[15] Takumi said that he initially received criticism for Ace Attorney's concept for its relation to law and a perceived requirement of legal knowledge, but he said that the main point of Ace Attorney was the "fun from solving puzzles and...calling witnesses out in their lies and evidence."[22]

At first, the game was planned to be released for the Game Boy Color, but after the development team saw the Game Boy Advance system's screen and footage of Mega Man Battle Network, Takumi felt it would be perfect for Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney.[23] The game was designed to be simple, as Takumi wanted it to be easy enough for even his mother to play.[21] As it was less common at the time to use professional voice actors, the development team provided the game's voice clips; each staff member recorded every sample needed for the game, and then the best ones were used. Takumi used his privilege as the director to cast himself as Phoenix, however, while Sugimori voiced von Karma and Iwamoto voiced Edgeworth.[16][24]

The game was originally going to be a detective game, with Phoenix as a private investigator who finds a body at his client's office and is arrested. As the lawyer who is assigned to his case is useless, Phoenix takes up his own defense. One staff member suggested that Phoenix should be a hamster; while this didn't happen, this early version of Phoenix did have a pet hamster. It was decided early during development to refer to the game as Surviban: Attorney Detective Naruhodo-kun, with "surviban" being a portmanteau of "survival" and the Japanese word "saiban" (裁判, "court" or "trial"). Among other names considered were Boogie-Woogie Innocence and Bingo Bengo, with "bingo" referring to answering correctly and "bengo" (弁護) being Japanese for legal representation. Takumi soon realized that finding and taking apart contradictions was not related to detective work. He felt the main setting of the game should be courtrooms. At one point the game was in danger of being cancelled when two staff members left the company, but Takumi's division leader and Inaba enlisted a member of the Resident Evil development team to help them part-time.[20]

Takumi cited Japanese mystery author Edogawa Ranpo as an inspiration, particularly The Psychological Test, a short story which involves a crime that "unravels due to the criminal's contradictory testimony." It had a big impact on him, and was a major influence on the game. He was also inspired by stories from another Japanese author, Shinichi Hoshi, stating that he was pursuing his "element of surprise and unexpectedness."[25]


Takumi felt the best way to write a mystery with a good climax is to reveal various clues, then pull them together into one conclusion, and not have multiple possible endings. He said the biggest challenge with this is making the gameplay and story work together. The goal is to make the player feel they have driven the story forward themselves, with their own choices, even though the game is linear.[26] While writing the episodes, Takumi ranked the importance of each. The first episode was the most important, to make sure the player likes the game; the second episode was the second most important, to solidify the player's interest, and the finale was the third most important.[21] In general, each scenario was finished before anything else was done. Then characters were designed based on the scenarios, and Takumi adjusted the dialogue as needed to make sure it fit the designs.[16] At this point, the scenes that were to have specific cut-in illustrations made for them were decided. Takumi drew rough sketches of them and also drew the storyboards for the episodes' openings,[20] which consisted of a series of detailed drawings showing what is happening.[27]

In Takumi's first draft of the story, the second episode, "Turnabout Sisters", was the first episode of the game. The development team decided because of its length, among other factors, it did not work well easing players into the game. As a result, he wrote a shorter episode, "The First Turnabout", which was used as the game's first episode. He wanted players to focus on the thrill of "nailing the culprit", especially for the first episode. For this reason, the culprit in the first episode is shown in its opening. This was the most direct way Takumi could think of doing it. Takumi said it was a challenge to write the episode. In addition to keeping it short, he had to set up the world of Ace Attorney and the types of characters players would meet.[20] The third episode was written for the sake of the character Miles Edgeworth, and the theme of the fourth episode was "rekindling the relationship". In it, Takumi tried to portray an intensively strong friendship between Phoenix and Edgeworth. He did wonder if that was what people got from it, saying that some people interpreted the bond between Phoenix and Edgeworth as "intensively passionate". Because of these two episodes, Takumi considered Edgeworth to be the game's protagonist in a way. The classroom trial in the game's fourth episode is based on real events: when Takumi was in second grade, he had found a 5 yen coin and put it in his pocket; his teacher accused him of stealing it from another student and made him apologize to her.[21]

Takumi spent little time writing a backstory for Phoenix before writing the game's story, and instead made up dialogue and developed Phoenix's personality as he went along. He said Phoenix is himself in everything but name, with dialogue similar to what Takumi would have said in each situation in the games. He attributed this to being a first-time writer who did not think about developing characterization before writing the story.[26] Takumi did not write a backstory for Dick Gumshoe. His character and personality just "fell into place" after Takumi decided the character would end his sentences with "pal". Other aspects of the character came about organically as he wrote the story. For instance, at one point Edgeworth says he will cut Gumshoe's salary; this became part of Gumshoe's backstory.[21] Takumi came up with the partner character Maya thinking it would be more fun for players to have another character with them, providing advice, rather than investigating on their own.[26] Originally, she was going to be a lawyer-in-training, preparing to take the bar exam.[21]

Larry Butz, the game's first defendant, was particularly difficult for Takumi to write. He re-wrote the character several times. Originally, he was going to be an "average Joe" type of character, who only appeared in the game's fourth episode.[21] After his inclusion in the first episode, however, Suekane and Iwamoto told Takumi to give the character "some oomph".[20] Takumi then wrote him as a "prickly tough-guy" who had the habit of telling people he was going to kill them. Some of the higher-ups at Capcom did not like this, so Takumi changed him to a character who laments his lot in life, saying "I'm going to die!" or that the situation is killing him.[20] The third episode's culprit was originally going to be male, until Suekane pointed out that all the game's villains were men. The development team debated what to do with the now female character. Some staff members thought it would be odd to have a female character be the director of an action show, and some wondered what to do with the director role if she could not fill it. In the end, Takumi changed the scriptwriter character to a director, and made the culprit a "strong, glamorous, fashionable, and cool-headed" producer.[21]

Nintendo DS version[edit]

The game's fifth episode, "Rise from the Ashes", was not included in the original version of the game; it was created four years later as part of the Nintendo DS version of the game.[21] Minae Matsukawa produced the fifth episode, under supervision of Inaba and Mikami.[28] Naoto Tanaka composed new music pieces for "Rise from the Ashes".[29] The idea to include the use of the Nintendo DS system's microphone came from American Capcom staff members. The Japanese staff did not like the idea of adding unnecessary features, but Takumi thought it was important to make the American audience happy, so it was included as an optional feature.[30] "Rise from the Ashes" utilizes technical improvements from the Nintendo DS that weren't possible in the original game.[31]


The original version of the game was released for the Game Boy Advance in Japan on October 12, 2001.[32] The Nintendo DS port, which was titled Gyakuten Saiban: Yomigaeru Gyakuten (逆転裁判 蘇る逆転, "Turnabout Trial: Revived Turnabout"), was released in Japan on September 15, 2005, and included a new episode and an English language option.[33] The hope was the English language option would be a selling point in Japan, and that Japanese people studying English would play the game.[34] North American and European releases followed on October 11, 2005, and March 31, 2006, respectively.[35][36] A PC port of the Game Boy Advance version, developed by Daletto, was released in Japan in an episodic format, beginning on March 18, 2008.[37]Yomigaeru Gyakuten was later released on Wii via WiiWare in Japan on December 15, 2009,[38] in North America on January 11, 2010, and in Europe on January 15, 2010.[12] The fifth episode was released separately on WiiWare, on March 16, 2010, in Japan, in May 2010 in Europe, and on May 24, 2010, in North America.[39][40] An iOS version of Yomigaeru Gyakuten was released in Japan on December 21, 2009,[41] and in the West on May 24, 2010.[42]

A high-definition version of the first three Ace Attorney games, Ace Attorney: Phoenix Wright Trilogy HD,[b] was released for iOS and Android in Japan on February 7, 2012, and for iOS in the West on May 30, 2013.[43][44][45] Another collection of the first three games, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy,[c] was released for the Nintendo 3DS in Japan on April 17, 2014,[46][47][48][49][50] in North America on December 9, 2014, and in Europe on December 11, 2014.[51] It was also released for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on February 21, 2019 in Japan, and on April 9, 2019 internationally; a Windows version was released internationally on the same date.[52][53]


The localization of the game was outsourced to Bowne Global, and handled by writer Alexander O. Smith, who was unfamiliar with the Ace Attorney series before working on it, and editor Steve Anderson. While the Japanese version of the game takes place in Japan, the localized version is set in the United States. Normally the setting would be left vague while cultural differences the target audience would not understand would be adapted. Because one of the episodes involves time zones, however, they had to specify where the game takes place and chose the United States without thinking a lot about it. This became an issue in later games, where the Japanese setting was more obvious.[54] Bowne Global staff handled all the voice roles in the localized version; Takumi had wanted to do the English voice for Phoenix, but Ben Judd handled it.[16][55]

Smith faced several problems related to the game's use of puns. In the Japanese version, each character has a name that relies on Japanese wordplay. While Smith and Anderson had a lot of freedom when it came to localizing the names of minor characters, they had to discuss the names of the main cast with Capcom. Smith came up with a list of first and last names for Phoenix. The first suggestion was "Roger Wright"; "Phoenix" was also on the list, but further down. Smith felt that "Wright" had to be the character's surname, because Phoenix's surname in the Japanese version—"Naruhodō", meaning "I see" or "I understand"—was used many times in the game's text as a joke. The reason for the suggested first name "Roger" was alliteration; and "Roger" was a good source for jokes. A staff member of the development team, however, thought that "Roger Wright" was too similar to "Roger Rabbit". Other suggested first names included "Pierce", "Xavier", "Marcus", and "Zane". In the end, "Phoenix" was chosen for its heroic sound.[54]

As the game's dialogue consists of a lot of wordplay and misunderstandings, Smith would analyze scenes before writing them: he would determine what the scenes were trying to accomplish, and where their beats were. After he had the structure of a scene in his head, he would write it. At times he was able to make use of the original Japanese dialogue, but most of the time he had to come up with new ideas himself. At several points, the English wordplay was inspired by the wordplay in the Japanese version. At others it was not possible to have wordplay in the same places as in the Japanese version, so Smith would change the structure of the scene slightly. Sometimes Smith came up with a joke or funny line and changed the scene to make the joke work. About half the jokes were rewritten based on the characters present in the scene, rather than using translations of the Japanese jokes.[54]



Most versions of the game have received "generally favorable reviews" according to the review aggregatorMetacritic, with aggregate scores ranging from the high 70s to the low 80s out of 100;[56][57][58][59] an exception is the Wii version, which holds an aggregate score of 67/100, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[60]

Famitsu praised the idea of making a game based around trials. They felt this was innovative, and found it exhilarating and fun to uncover witnesses' lies.[32] Michael Cole of Nintendo World Report said the game's design and interface would make it a good choice for non-gamers as well.[6] Craig Harris of IGN felt the main issues with the game were its linearity, and how the puzzles are simple because the player can stop witness testimony at any time.[64] Cole, too, felt the game was very linear, and that it was unclear how to proceed at certain points. He said that because of how story-driven it is, the game has low replay value; he still felt that players might want to replay it after a few years.[6]

Thomas Bowskill of Nintendo Life said the game had changed his idea of what can make for a great game, and called it a "masterpiece". Bowskill appreciated the 2D presentation of the investigations, saying they suited the gameplay well and that it might have been difficult to find clues if 3D graphics had been used instead. Bowskill called the investigation sections "tedious" and "boring" at times, but said they were outweighed by the "feeling of accomplishment" from solving the cases.[4]

Carrie Gouskos of GameSpot said the game revitalized the adventure game genre.[5] Gouskos appreciated the game's presentation, calling it "unique and outstanding". She noted the music and sound effects work well with the drama. The cross-examination graphics, showing the two opposing lawyers along with the sound effect of a sword being unsheathed, she added, created an atmosphere similar to that of a fighting game.[5] Harris also likened the style to that of a fighting game.[64] Gouskos said the graphics, while simple, work well to show each character's mood and personality.[5] Harris agreed the visuals were well-drawn and called the soundtrack "nicely rendered", but felt the character animation was very limited.[64] Cole felt the graphics, while dated, have "visual flair". He appreciated the opening cinematics for the cases, which he thought were both stylish and ambiguous, and the character animations, which he called "priceless".[6] Nadia Oxford at USgamer said that early Ace Attorney games, despite the "tinny" sound of the Game Boy Advance versions, had spawned some of the most iconic music themes in video games; she noted "The Detective That Came From the Wild West", Jake Marshall's theme, as a particularly good track.[29]

Bowskill found the mood of the game to be hilarious, saying the game never gets stale; he attributed this to the diversity of its characters.[4] Gouskos called the game's characters cohesive, over-the-top, and quirky.[5] Harris called the story interesting and well written, citing the characters, situations, and dialogue.[63][64] Cole was impressed by the mysteries and their resolutions, calling them "novel, unpredictable and plausible". He also appreciated the character development arcs through the game, which he felt provided pacing and made the cases cohesive. He called the English localization "top-notch", and appreciated its humor.[6] According to Fintan Monaghan of The Escapist, the game is a critique of the Japanese legal system, which has a 99% criminal conviction rate.[69]

Wii, iOS, and Nintendo 3DS versions[edit]

Spencer McIlvaine of Nintendo Life was disappointed in the Wii version that had only a single use for the Motion controller, and how the low-resolution graphics in handheld versions of the game were used.[12] Dan Whitehead of Eurogamer also thought the motion controls were a minor addition. He was disappointed in how little effort Capcom had put into the port compared to LucasArts' remake of The Secret of Monkey Island.[61] IGN's Craig Harris called it "incredibly lazy", wishing it had included improved art and sharper text.[65] Cara Ellison of Eurogamer called the Trilogy HD port "perfunctory", saying the animations are slow at times, the high-definition graphics take away from the charm of the pixel art in earlier versions, and there is a delay after button presses.[62]

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy was better received. US Gamer's Bob Mackey appreciated how the games were mostly left untouched, while given minor improvements, such as the player being able to read the text at their own pace and not waiting for it to crawl across the screen. He said the game's graphical upgrades were hit or miss, with certain characters, including Phoenix and Edgeworth, looking great. Elements that originally had less definition, such as the judge's beard, however, were "a little wonky".[68] Thomas Whitehead of Nintendo Life said that Capcom had done a "solid job" with the port. He appreciated the stereoscopic 3D effect and the game's faithfulness to the original; he felt, however, that the lack of an orchestral soundtrack similar to that in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies was a minor disappointment.[66]Hardcore Gamer's Geoff Thew called the updated art gorgeous, noting it did not have the same animation-related problems as the Trilogy HD on iOS. He appreciated the 3D effect, which he said worked well most of the time. However, the window frame in the detention center was not rendered on its own layer. While this was not a huge problem, Thew said it was distracting as the player often visits that area. He also commented on the lack of a remastered soundtrack, calling it a letdown.[67]


Eurogamer ranked the game as the 18th best video game of 2005.[70] It was also a nominee for GameSpot's 2005 Best Adventure Game award, which went to Fahrenheit.[71]Destructoid named the game the 48th best video game of the 2000s, citing the courtroom gameplay and characters, and calling it "one of the most unique and surprising games" of the decade. They said the third game in the series had the best story, but it relied too heavily on story events in previous Ace Attorney games; meanwhile, they found Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney to be fresh and have challenging cases, making it the best in the series.[72]Game Informer named it the 178th best video game of all time in 2009.[73]Adventure Gamers named it the 29th best adventure game of all time in 2011, citing its story, characters, and creative gameplay.[74] In 2015, GamesRadar+ named it the 55th best video game of all time, citing its music, story and look, calling it "Shu Takumi's masterpiece".[75] In 2016, Famitsu readers voted Gyakuten Saiban as the second best Game Boy Advance title, behind only Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire.[76] In 2017, Famitsu readers voted Gyakuten Saiban the third best adventure game of all time, behind only Steins;Gate and 428: Shibuya Scramble.[77]


The Game Boy Advance version was the 163rd best selling video game of the year in Japan in 2001, with 62,169 copies sold.[78] Another 37,143 copies of the budget-priced Game Boy Advance re-release were sold in Japan in 2003, making it the country's 277th best selling game of the year.[79] The Nintendo DS version was the 127th best selling game of the year in Japan in 2005, with 101,902 copies sold.[80] Between 2006 and 2011 the game sold an additional 419,954 copies dropping from the 133rd to the 650th best selling game during that period.[81]

Demand for the North American release of the Nintendo DS version was higher than expected. The game was hard to find in stores shortly after its release; the third printing sold out in around a week.[82][83] As of February 2007, 100,000 copies had been shipped in North America, which Capcom's vice-president of marketing found surprising.[84]Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy was the 139th best selling game of the year in Japan in 2014, with 46,819 copies sold.[85] The PC version of the collection was among the best-selling new releases of the month on Steam.[86][d]


After the release of the game, sequels, spin-offs, and a crossover have been made. The second and third games in the series, Justice for All and Trials and Tribulations, were released in 2002 and 2004.[88][89] The fourth game, Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, which features the new protagonist Apollo Justice, was released in 2007.[90][91] The fifth game, Dual Destinies, was released in 2013,[92] and a sixth game, Spirit of Justice, was released in 2016.[93] Two spin-off games starring Miles Edgeworth, Ace Attorney Investigations and Ace Attorney Investigations 2, were released in 2009 and 2011,[94][95][96] and two featuring Phoenix's ancestor Ryūnosuke Naruhodō, The Great Ace Attorney: Adventures and The Great Ace Attorney 2: Resolve, were released in 2015 and 2017.[97] A crossover with the Professor Layton series, titled Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, was released in 2012.[98][99]

A manga based on the game, written by Kenji Kuroda and drawn by Kazuo Maekawa, premiered in 2006 in Bessatsu Young Magazine.[100]Kodansha released it in North America in five volumes from June 2011 to July 2012.[101][102] The third and fourth volumes both ranked No.2 on The New York Times Manga Best Seller List for one week each in 2011 and 2012, respectively.[103][104] A live action film adaptation of the game, titled Ace Attorney, produced at Toei Company, and directed by Takashi Miike, premiered in Japanese theaters on February 11, 2012.[105] An anime series adaptation based on the original trilogy premiered in April 2016.[106]

Phoenix Wright has been credited with helping to popularise visual novels in the Western world.[107][108]Vice Magazine credits Phoenix Wright with popularising the visual novel mystery format,[109] and notes that its success anticipated the resurgence of point-and-click adventure games as well as the international success of Japanese visual novels.[110] According to Danganronpa director Kazutaka Kodaka, Phoenix Wright's success in North America was due to how it distinguished itself from most visual novels with its gameplay mechanics, which Danganronpa later built upon and helped it also find success in North America.[108]


  1. ^Known in Japan as Gyakuten Saiban (Japanese: 逆転裁判, lit.Turnabout Trial)
  2. ^Known in Japan as Gyakuten Saiban 123HD: Naruhodō Ryūichi (逆転裁判 123HD 〜成歩堂 龍一編〜, "Turnabout Trial 123HD: Ryūichi Naruhodō")
  3. ^Known in Japan as Gyakuten Saiban 123: Naruhodō Ryūichi Selection (逆転裁判123 成歩堂セレクション, "Turnabout Trial 123: Ryūichi Naruhodō Selection")
  4. ^Based on total revenue for the first two weeks on sale.[87]


  1. ^ ported by SourceNext
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Best Phoenix Wright Objection/Pursuit/Cornered moment (GS1)



Defend the innocent and save the day! Experience the original trilogy in clear, retina-quality HD graphics, and choose to play horizontally for larger backgrounds or vertically for one-handed ease!

"Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy HD" includes "Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney", Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Justice For All", and "Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Trials and Tribulations". Each of these three games can be purchased separately or all together in one bundle.

You can even play the first two episodes of "Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney" for free!

◆Game Overview
Join rookie lawyer Phoenix Wright in his quest to defend the innocent and find the truth behind 14 exciting cases!

・Investigation Sections
Prepare for your epic courtroom showdowns by investigating crime scenes, collecting evidence, and questioning witnesses.

・Courtroom Sections
Use evidence and witness testimonies to your advantage as you battle to declare your clients innocent. Nothing less than a full acquittal will do in this court of law! Find the contradictions in witnesses' testimonies to expose the truth!

*You can fast-forward through sections of dialogue by holding your finger on the "Next Message" button.
*The games contained within are based on the critically acclaimed games for the Nintendo DS.

[Important Notes]
Please see [Supported OS and Devices] in the lower part of the following link.

Note: We cannot guarantee the app’s performance or offer refunds if you use a device not listed as compatible.

*You cannot purchase individual episodes separately.

Version 1.02.00

Supported OS: iOS 9.0 through iOS 14.6
Various bug fixes.

Ratings and Reviews

4.4 out of 5

1.1K Ratings

It’s pretty good and I want Godot to step on me

Judging by what I’ve been able to play so far, the AA games are great, each with a story and writing that, like a good novel, makes you want to see more. The characters are quirky and memorable, and Phoenix is a very likable and humorous main character. Character designs range from simple yet likable to being as over-the-top as a Jojo’s villain and I love it. Everyone’s different reactions to the events in the game are hilarious. really The only problem is that a lot of the time, you’re left clicking aimlessly at random dialogue boxes and things in a room until you randomly select the option that progresses the story. Also, the HD sprites are really, *really* ugly, and some animations (particularly Edgeworth’s bowing animation) are very choppy. It looks as though the only change the team made to the original games was smoothing out the old pixel art sprites so they could repackage they game as an HD title, but it doesn’t ruin the game or anything. Overall, these seem like pretty cool games and my only regret is being too poor to buy the full games.

Great Game, Slightly Buggy Port

Let me begin by saying that this collection is amazing. The amount of content in the first game alone feels worth the whole price so having two more games after that is just incredible. The story is excellent, the characters are memorable, the pace and tension-building are top notch, and the gameplay can be quite fun. I would highly recommend this game on this or any other platform based on content alone.

As for the iOS port specifically, it’s a bit buggy. Sound effects (and occasionally even music) like to disappear without warning or reason and won’t come back until the app is completely reset. The music track sometimes doubles up and won’t reset to normal until you exit and re-enter the app. The screen rotation occasionally gets locked and won’t unlock until the app is reset. Lastly, though it’s not a bug as far as I can tell, the game doesn’t actually change the real screen rotation no matter how you hold your device. The game looks like it’s horizontal, for instance, but normal phone controls like the notifications menu are all vertically oriented at all times. This can be annoying occasionally and is a truly strange design choice.

Overall, the convenience of having these games on the go is well worth the bugs, but I hope that someday this game gets patched so that it’s a bit more stable. Well worth the purchase, regardless. After playing the first two trials for free, I was hooked and never looked back.

Great!...Now What?

I haven’t bought anything but this has definitely won me over in terms of how much I enjoy this. If they cleaned up the menu a bit and fixed a bug where I can be guaranteed sound without any Bluetooth device when I disconnect said device in game, that would be great. I suppose I use my speaker and headphones mostly though so no skin off my nose. As far as purchases, I’m not sure I can pull seventeen bucks right now, and saving three bucks sounds nice if I buy the whole trilogy because I might buy the whole thing anyway. BUT as far as the initial game it’s conceivable that I can pull of 20 bucks at l a later date gradually over time, so then the only question is whether the original ace attorney game is worth it with only three episodes left for six bucks, a 2$:1 episode ratio. I suppose what would determine THAT is the amount of trials held in court each episode, yet just knowing that would spoil story.
As to reiterate on above, I’m also trying to buy a Fire Emblem, (not that shameful excuse of an app,) or Splatoon 2, a new 3ds xl, and Switch online services, not to mention Luigi’s Mansion or bowsers inside story for 3ds. So it’s conceivable that I wouldn’t get back to buying the trilogy. 😖
Ergo, (😁👍) my indecisiveness. I’ll ask a fan who’s knowledgeable about this. In a way, this is a problem that one can love to have. 👌🧐

The developer, CAPCOM, indicated that the app’s privacy practices may include handling of data as described below. For more information, see the developer’s privacy policy.

Data Not Collected

The developer does not collect any data from this app.

Privacy practices may vary, for example, based on the features you use or your age. Learn More



398.2 MB


Requires iOS 9.0 or later.
Requires iPadOS 9.0 or later.
iPod touch
Requires iOS 9.0 or later.

Age Rating
12+ Infrequent/Mild Cartoon or Fantasy ViolenceInfrequent/Mild Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or ReferencesInfrequent/Mild Horror/Fear Themes



In-App Purchases

  1. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy HD$16.99
  2. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney$5.99
  3. PW: AA - Justice For All$6.99


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Phoenix wright attorney ace

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy

Available now

Phoenix Wright's journey starts here.

The classic courtroom adventure series that has sold over 6.7 million copies worldwide is finally here. Become Phoenix Wright and experience the thrill of battle as you fight to save your innocent clients in a court of law. Play all 14 episodes, spanning the first three games, in one gorgeous collection. Solve the intriguing mysteries behind each case and witness the final truth for yourself!

Release date:
April 09, 2019

1 player

Adventure, Simulation



Game file size:
2.2 GB

Supported Languages:
Japanese, French, German, Korean, Chinese, English

Supported Play Modes:
TV mode

TV mode

Tabletop mode

Tabletop mode

Handheld mode

Handheld mode

Software compatibility and play experience may differ on Nintendo Switch Lite. Additional accessories may be required (sold separately). See support for details.

ESRB Rating:

Nintendo Switch Online

Play online, access classic Super NES™ games, and more with a Nintendo Switch Online membership.

A Nintendo Switch Online membership (sold separately) is required for Save Data Cloud backup.


Attorney Online - Break during a court in a nutshell

Ace Attorney Portal



Today marks the 20th anniversary of the Ace Attorney series, and in these twenty years, we've been truly blessed by you - our amazing fans - with your overwhelming love and support.

With an anime and a live-action movie, and multiple manga series, stage plays, escape room games and orchestra concerts (among other adaptations) to date, what started out as a simple game has grown to become so much more.

None of this could have happened without the help of the many, many people who lent their skills and talent to us along the way, and we are incredibly grateful to each and every one of them.

Going forward, we pledge to continue bringing the Ace Attorney series to you in a variety of engaging ways. We hope you'll remain on this journey with us in the years to come.

October 12, 2021
The Ace Attorney Series Development Team



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