Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney (2007)

by Ji-yeong
8 minutes read


Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney revitalizes the beloved series by shifting the focus to a new protagonist, Apollo Justice, who seeks to carve his own path in the legal world with the guidance of Phoenix Wright. Its compelling narrative, coupled with the introduction of new gameplay mechanics, ensures that the legacy of the Ace Attorney series continues to thrive.


Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, released in 2007, marks a significant turn in the Ace Attorney series by introducing a new main character, Apollo Justice. This entry not only continues the legacy of its predecessors but also sets a new direction for the series.


“Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney” is a captivating visual novel adventure game developed and published by Capcom. It’s the fourth title in the Ace Attorney series, and it was initially released for the Nintendo DS handheld game console in Japan in 2007 and in the West in 2008.

The game takes place seven years after the events of the previous game, “Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Trials and Tribulations”. Phoenix Wright, the main character of previous titles in the series, has been stripped of his attorney’s badge. Apollo Justice, an up-and-coming attorney, becomes his apprentice, working with Phoenix’s adopted daughter Trucy on four cases.

Apollo Justice, a rookie attorney, befriends Phoenix Wright, a famous attorney who quit being one seven years earlier. Apollo solves four different cases as an attorney and also learns how and why Phoenix lost his badge.

In his first case, Apollo defends Phoenix Wright, who has become a pianist and poker player following his disbarment from law seven years ago. Phoenix is accused of murder and gambling charges after a man was bludgeoned to death during one of his poker games. Suspicion in the murder falls onto Apollo’s boss and mentor, Kristoph Gavin. Apollo must decide to forfeit his loyalty and trust in his mentor to side with uncovering the truth, and ultimately proves Kristoph guilty with the help of Phoenix, although Kristoph’s motive remains a complete mystery.

After the trial, Apollo becomes disgusted when Phoenix reveals to him that a piece of evidence used to prove Kristoph guilty was forged evidence, and he punches Phoenix. Despite this, Phoenix offers Apollo a job at his office. With his boss having been arrested, Apollo has little choice but to accept the offer, at the former Wright & Co. Law Offices, the “Wright Talent Agency”, turning it into the “Wright Anything Agency” now that the agency is practicing law once again.

Straight away, Apollo finds himself thrust into many tough cases, starting off with a shooting where the main suspect is a gangster in L.A’s biggest gang family. During his cases, he faces off against Klavier Gavin, the younger brother of Kristoph Gavin, who’s both a prosecutor and a rock-star.

As his cases unfold, Apollo begins to slowly learn the truth behind Phoenix’s disbarment from seven years prior, in which the ex-attorney allegedly used forged evidence in a murder trial. At the same time, a change is coming from America’s legal system: a particular high profile case demonstrates that murderers can easily get away with their crimes by a lack of evidence, even when their guilt seems like common sense.

A new system called the “Jurist System”, which uses common sense opinions of a jury, rather than a need for evidence, is created over time, and given a test-run, involving a seemingly straight forward murder of a shut-in artist. Apollo has been assigned as the lawyer on the “test-run”, but little does Apollo know that hiding beneath this seemingly “straight-forward” test-run is a complex, dark thread that connects everything from seven years ago and the recent past together: and laying at the center of it all, is the real truth behind Phoenix Wright’s disbarment.


Apollo Justice, the protagonist, is a determined and passionate attorney. Phoenix Wright, now a mentor figure, plays a crucial role in Apollo’s development. Other key characters include Trucy Wright, a magician and Phoenix’s adopted daughter, and Klavier Gavin, a prosecutor and rock star who challenges Apollo in court.


The gameplay retains the series’ core mechanics of investigation and courtroom battles while introducing the ‘Perceive’ system, allowing Apollo to detect subtle signs of nervousness or lies in witnesses’ testimonies. This addition enriches the player’s engagement with the game’s narrative and puzzles.


Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney is a commendable continuation of the Ace Attorney series, introducing new dynamics and challenges while staying true to the essence of its predecessors. Its engaging narrative, memorable characters, and gameplay innovations make it a standout title in the series.

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