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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney iPhone Review

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Posted by: Michael Brown

Review Rating 8.0 Great
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Making its way to yet another portable device, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney is now available for the iPhone/iPod touch. Included in the package is an additional fifth case and all for the incredibly low price of $4.99. If you’ve never had the chance to play an Ace Attorney game, now is definitely the time.

A brief history for those who aren’t familiar with the Ace Attorney series; it's a set of text adventures that lets gamers explore crime scenes and defend clients in court. The typical way to confirm/continue dialogue feels natural, especially now that players are able to push the button with their finger. Playing Phoenix Wright on the iPhone is a nice transition from the DS. In fact, the iPhone version also features tilt controls that allow the player to move between items/profiles in the Court Record. Although if tilt controls aren’t really your thing, the game lets players slide through items as if they were using the DS stylus.

Most of my issues with the iPhone port are purely aesthetic; there isn’t really anything that actually hampers the gameplay. The buttons on the iPhone look very tacked on; an eyesore compared to the original. While it’s small issue, I have no idea why Capcom couldn’t have just made the buttons match the original DS version.

A slightly larger issue with the game is when the player has to examine certain areas for clues. On the DS, gamers used the stylus or D-pad to point to an area, however, on the iPhone they must use their fingers. This frequently leads to the player’s fingers covering the part of the screen they are trying to point to. Also, after selecting or presenting items there is a small momentary lag. It’s not exactly a huge deal, but it was never present in the DS version of the game.

The Phoenix Wright series is one of my favorites, and this new port to the iPhone is a natural transition. In fact, it makes gamers wonder why Capcom took so long to do it. At only $4.99 it’s cheaper than the recent Wii port and remains true to the game’s portable nature.

By bringing Phoenix Wright to the iPhone, Capcom is exposing millions more to the Ace Attorney franchise. If you’ve never enjoyed the series before, you still won’t. However, if you have always been curious but could never track down a copy, there is absolutely no reason to object to this wonderful game.

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