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Author Topic: Phoenix Wright: Adventure games rise from the ashes on DS  (Read 1904 times)
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Misguided
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« on: June 03, 2006, 03:48:11 PM »

I originally put this in another thread then realized thta was in the E3 folder and no one was ging to be looking over there much anymore, so please excuse the double post.

I just managed to find a copy of Phoenix Wright today and have just finished the second case. I'm glad to have something to distract me from the fact that within hours both my 360 and my PC have taken a nosedive (PC appears to be a bad power supply).

Anyway, for those that haven't tried it, this is a rather fresh approach to the adventure game genre. Yes, it's a classic adventure game set in the context of a series of legal trials. You have to collect evidence and present it at the right moment to advance the story. One of the great things about it is that there's no time spent going from place to place. A couple of button presses and you're where you need to go. You can use the touchscreen or buttons to question witnesses, examine areas for clues, etc. but I found myself using the stylus after a while.

The first case was rather short and served as a tutorial, but the second had several "chapters" and a variety of twists and turns. The presentation is well done, with anime-influenced graphics. There are nice musical cues that give you feedback as to how you are doing. One thing that takes a bit of getting used to is that the image on screen will shake (or even flash sometimes) or there will be audible cues accompanying text to help convey emotion (since there is almost zero voice work).

The only gripe I have so far (and this is minor) is a classic adventure game issue of wanting to use an item too soon. I jumped the gun on the final twist in the second case and wanted to use a piece of evidence before the game was ready, but had to let things run their course a little.

While I think the game is fairly on rails, it somehow manages to make me feel like I'm making choices that are meaningful. Thus the game feels like more than simply an interactive movie. I think I've missed some little things that would have played out differently had I made different choices, even though the final outcome might not have changed dramatically. Also, the characters have a tremendous amount of ...well...character.

At any rate, I found this for 20 bucks (used) and have already spent perhaps 3 hours on it with 3 cases left to go (again, the very first one doesn't really count). I hope the remaining cases are just as entertaining as the second.

This isn't an easy game to find (I've been waiting for it to show up in my store for months) but since I had a day off today, I did a locator search at gamestop.com and tracked down a copy at another store. I used to love the adventure genre but it has been a very long time since I had this much fun with one.

Perhaps the best news is that this is an established series in Japan, with the fourth game on the way. We are getting another game in the series here in the US (Phoenix Wright: Justice for All) but I'm not certain which of the Japanese games it corresponds to. At any rate, give me more of this over Grim Fandango or Longest Journey any day of the week.

If you've got a DS, and you have a fondness for adventure games (or maybe used to but haven't played a good one in years) go find a copy of this and give it a go. The first game was a sleeper hit, which is bringing the second to US shores, but if the second does really well, we're sure to see more localizations.
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« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2006, 04:46:18 PM »

Great write-up.  I loved Phoenix Wright and had a blast with it and can't wait for the sequel.

Another one to try out is Trace Memory.  It's very much an old-style adventure game with prettier graphics.  The only problem is it's very short so it might be better as a rental.
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« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2006, 05:58:28 PM »

It really is an enjoyable game.  The cases only get more and more involving as you progress.  And yeah, it's definately on rails . . . in that, there are definate answers you must choose.  But I got the same feeling as you, how PW makes you think that it isn't.
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« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2006, 06:43:46 PM »

I want it so badly, but can never find it used in my local stores and am not paying the premium on eBay.
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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2006, 07:09:48 PM »

of all the ds titles i've played, i'd still say pw is the wackiest, most out-of-the-blue treat of them all (i enjoyed trace memory as well, but, on the fun scale, pw just leaves it in the dust - though i'm not sure i'd say the same about grim fandango, which i think of in a class all it's own)...

really happy to see they're localizing / ds-ifying the second game of the series. what the games might lose by being somewhat on rails is more than made up for through sheer cleverness (& humor)...
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« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2006, 07:21:23 PM »

Quote from: "DiscoJason"
I want it so badly, but can never find it used in my local stores and am not paying the premium on eBay.


DJ, do what I did and go here

Put in a zipcode and specify a radius of 20 miles (or whatever you want). You can find it at Gamestop or EB by doing this. Once you locate one, call the store and make sure they have it, and that they have the book (if you want it, but it isn't pivotal here). Then have them hold it for you.

Not trying to be a company shill here, but if you don't want to use ebay, give this a shot.
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« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2006, 07:21:29 PM »

Yeah I have to say that I felt some sort of geeky pride when I would wear down the witness and the music would kick in after presenting the key evidence   biggrin
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« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2006, 01:54:52 AM »

Quote from: "Misguided"

DJ, do what I did and go here



Oh, I've done this.  They just don't have any in my area ever for whatever reason.
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« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2006, 09:34:05 PM »

Well....I finished PW last night, on a 3+ hour romp through the final stages of the fifth case. Finishing any game is a rarity for me, and is a testament to just how good this one is. It isn't all that short eiither. I imagine I put 20-25+ hours into it.

Let me say that the game gets better with each passing case. The last one, in particular, is an absolute blast because it is more intricate and introduces some elements that add more interactivity to the investigation side of things. I realy like that while I figured out lots of things, the game was generally good at holding back twists or motivations behind events without pulling things totally out of left field. No matter how much I thought I knew, there were always surprises left. One particular moment in the final case had me cackling with glee (when the prosecution announced a certain witness on the final day of the trial).

I'm really hoping that we'll see more of the interactive elements in the second game (PW: And Justice for All). It would be even better if there were multiple outcomes and we could take it off rails just a bit. Even without those things, the sequel will be a no-brainer preorder for me the moment that option becomes available.

I encourage other people to do that, not just because I work for gamestop, but because I think it would be great to show the company and the publisher just what kind of following the game has.
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« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2006, 10:17:57 PM »

Want to sell it?
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« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2006, 10:24:52 PM »

Re-release Neuromancer!!!
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« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2006, 10:31:40 PM »

Quote from: "DiscoJason"
Want to sell it?


I'd really like to hang onto it for the time being. For one thing, my son wants to try it.
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« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2006, 01:15:28 AM »

http://www.capcom.com/xpml/game.xpml?gameid=800038

go forth and buy this game!
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« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2006, 02:12:53 AM »

i love it - phoenix wright fever returns!



take that!...
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« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2006, 03:46:13 AM »

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and lo he did click the button...

Now I just need to get over this fascination with Yu Gi Oh... if only my sone were say.... 8 years older. slywink
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« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2006, 04:39:04 AM »

Sometimes I wish I lived in the states for the cheap shipping. *Sigh*
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« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2007, 02:19:19 PM »

Way late to the party here, as I have never been able to find it. But, luckily I was clued in to its availability in the PW2 thread and I picked it up last night. It's a nice twist on the classic adventure formula. It's very disconcerting (in a good way) to have these murder trials (I am in the 2nd one) where you discuss murder by blunt trauma, yet have this completely over the top goofy tone to the game. Early thumbs up from me so far!
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« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2007, 03:07:10 PM »

I've seen this at my local Circuit City for $30.  I really don't need another game right now, but I'm concerned that if I don't buy it now, when I do want it, I won't be able to find it.  Hmm.  Decisions.
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« Reply #18 on: January 24, 2007, 04:53:52 AM »

Honestly I think Phoenix Wright is my all time favorites right now..I definitely am interested to see what the Hotel Dusk is like, as well as I still want to pick up touch detective.  I'm all for bringing back the adventure games.
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« Reply #19 on: January 24, 2007, 04:54:54 PM »

Quote from: weleavefossils on January 24, 2007, 04:53:52 AM

Honestly I think Phoenix Wright is my all time favorites right now..I definitely am interested to see what the Hotel Dusk is like, as well as I still want to pick up touch detective.  I'm all for bringing back the adventure games.
I'm in the same boat - love Phoenix Wright, picked up Hotel Dusk because I think it'll be awesome... but word of warning about Touch Detective: didn't like it at all!  Just wasn't engaging enough for me... didn't provide the same sort of adrenaline rush Phoenix does.
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« Reply #20 on: January 24, 2007, 06:15:35 PM »

If anyone wants it and can't find it... look it up on Amazon.  I've been getting all my hard-to-find DS games there, although supplies have been getting better at my local BB (Gamestopo's inventory still sucks, though- it's like they aren't even trying).
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« Reply #21 on: January 24, 2007, 09:03:42 PM »

Quote from: depward on January 24, 2007, 04:54:54 PM

Quote from: weleavefossils on January 24, 2007, 04:53:52 AM

Honestly I think Phoenix Wright is my all time favorites right now..I definitely am interested to see what the Hotel Dusk is like, as well as I still want to pick up touch detective.  I'm all for bringing back the adventure games.
I'm in the same boat - love Phoenix Wright, picked up Hotel Dusk because I think it'll be awesome... but word of warning about Touch Detective: didn't like it at all!  Just wasn't engaging enough for me... didn't provide the same sort of adrenaline rush Phoenix does.

Thats what i've heard..but I just love the art for Touch Detective....thanks for the advice.  I would like to hear a comparison of PW and Hotel Dusk.

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« Reply #22 on: January 24, 2007, 09:54:18 PM »

I'm probably the only person on the planet that really liked Touch Detective. Granted, it wasn't PW but I don't think it was trying to be PW or Trace Memory. It was just Touch Detective... Very mellow and quirky. The characters were children, silly girl children at that and I think one of the reasons I really liked it was that I could sorta identify with the silliness...  saywhat
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« Reply #23 on: January 24, 2007, 11:42:14 PM »

I haven't felt compelled to finish TD. Great art style and music, but what I've seen of the cases just isn't all that interesting. Conceptually I like it a lot, but it left me flat. A much more polished effort all around than Trace Memory, IMO, but not close to Phoenix Wright. To sum up. decent, but it had potential that seemed unexploited. Perhaps the later cases are better.
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« Reply #24 on: January 25, 2007, 10:52:04 PM »

So, I bought PW yesterday at CC as I had become paranoid that I would be unable to find it when I really wanted it.  Haven't opened it up yet.
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