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The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles Discussion

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17 hours ago, Lightchao42 said:

I didn't know McGilded's accent was Irish until Gina identified him as such. It seems I need to educate myself when it comes to English accents. The fan translation didn't give McGilded any accent nor does Gina seem to call him "the Irishman", so him being Irish might be an addition by the localization.

The Memoirs of the Clouded Kokoro:

  Reveal hidden contents

This case is an immediate followup to G1-4, and as such is a flashback case. It's technically a "filler" case, but it's a fun one and the connection to the previous case enhances both of them. It's also the first two day trial in either of the GAA games.

Soseki is our defendant again, and he's up to his usual antics of getting falsely accused of murder. Garrideb has been very unlucky lately too, hasn't he? First a criminal is hiding out in his home, one of his tenants dies, his wife accidentally stabs someone outside (who was trying to kill another of his tenants) while throwing a knife at him and she gets arrested, the aforementioned other tenant gets poisoned...

The weird Shakespeare guy himself, William Shamspeare, marks an Ace Attorney first: he's not the first victim to survive the crime, but he's the first victim you have to face in court. The victim of the crime trying to blame the defendant is a fun idea and I wonder why it hasn't been done before. The scene where Shamspeare rises from the "dead" was very surprising; he has plenty more funny moments, though his funniest moments are whenever he breaks character ("You did wha-- Sorry-- Thou hast WHAT?! You broke-- I mean-- Thou were in MY ROOM?!") so he's always a joy to interact with. Metermann, the other guy who appeared in G1-4, doesn't do much beyond establishing Shamspeare as a gas thief, which itself mainly establishes the tea sample so we can investigate more. He doesn't appear during the second day, oddly enough.

I said previously that Olive Green surviving her injuries in G1-4 didn't mean much unless she appeared in this game, and here she is! She's the other culprit, and she contrasts Shamspeare by being reserved and gloomy. As a result, their interactions on the stand are quite entertaining. She's also surprisingly good at keeping her composure when put on the spot. Attempting to kill someone based on suspicion of guilt would be rather unsympathetic, but her plan was clever; it only would have worked if Shamspeare was guilty of Ross's death, and he wouldn't be harmed if he was innocent. Green's also been very unlucky lately, and hopefully things will be better for her after she serves her sentence.

By the end of the second investigation I assumed Shamspeare's plan to kill Soseki backfired and he accidentally poisoned himself. I also thought he was Selden himself at first, having faked his death to escape prison, until it's established that Selden's cellmate was the only witness to his death. I thought Green's presence would serve to tie up loose ends from the previous case and she wouldn't be involved in the crime. I might have suspected Garrideb of something if he hadn't appeared in G1-5, which meant he wouldn't be arrested for anything after this case.

We learn that Sholmes and van Zieks have some history together. Could the mysterious Baskervilles case be related to van Zieks in some way...?

It's funny how the case begins with "Hmm... I wonder what was so important about this case that Susato was called back to Japan" and it takes until the last three minutes for the reason to be revealed.

I'll also talk about the (first?) investigation of G2-3 up to the Dance of Deduction, since it's the point where the overarching plot starts becoming prominent.

  Reveal hidden contents

We learn that Ryunosuke was barred from work after his music box stunt during the Unspeakable Story. Looks like the they got mad at Ryunosuke for leaking government secrets... Fortunately, Stronghart decides to return his lawyering privileges after six months of good behavior. We get the impression that Stronghart knows more about Kazuma's mission than Ryunosuke does, and we get further questions as to what his mission was. Stronghart gets a few funny scenes where he talks apparently forever about forensic science and is eleven hours late to a meeting, which is unexpected considering his demeanor. Also Susato is still in Japan, so Iris becomes our assistant for this investigation.

We meet van Zieks outside court for the first time, and all things considered he's reasonably civil about Ryunosuke and Iris barging into his office, even if Ryunosuke earned his respect by the end of G1-5. Van Zieks has a new masked apprentice whom Ryunosuke finds strangely familiar. Hmm... he must be the long lost third Skulkin brother.

Van Zieks is fine with his "Reaper of the Bailey" reputation because London's crime rate dropped because of it, basically making him the Batman of the legal world. Except all of his "victims" end up dead, so maybe he isn't that much like Batman. He's willing to admit that Gina and Soseki were exceptions to his usual approach of only targeting the truly guilty, which is nice of him to acknowledge. Ryunosuke is a nice enough to be concerned about van Zieks's safety following his attack, and van Zieks is nice enough to ask how Soseki's been doing lately. You big softy, you...

Anyhow, the victim of this case blew up in a teleportation accident, and the defendant is van Zieks's old friend from university. Van Zieks previously failed to convict the victim of this case, so the Reaper's curse strikes again. Could we finally learn the truth of the Reaper in this case?

Gregson was put on probation like Ryunosuke was following his deal in G1-5, but he's been let off the hook by now. Gina has grown into a mostly law-abiding young lady and is now training to become an investigator. So that's why she's named after Sherlock Holmes's usual investigator, G. Lestrade. Gregson's namesake in the Holmes stories was rivals with Lestrade early on but was later eclipsed by him in importance, which Gregson and Gina's mentorship might be a reference to.

We learn that Sholmes has a side job as temporary wax statue. Just when Sholmes gets unusually serious and is about to give us plot important information, we're interrupted by the Great Witch Bez- er, Esmeralda Tusspells (that's a Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright joke). I'm not sure yet how the wax museum relates to the Great Exhibition murder, but I'll see where it goes.

 

Curious. Did the fan translations have any accents or dialects at all? Because it's far from Magnus McGuilded alone. Most of the characters have pretty distinct accents based on region and class.

6 hours ago, Rapier said:

I think he's supposed to simbolize a leprechaun, judging from his clothing and how rich he is, and if I recall correctly this is an irish mythology/stereotype so I think the connection is intentional instead of an addition by the localization.

Also, his japanese name was Cosney Megundal. The former is a japanese person trying to guess how an englishman/irishman would be named in the 18th century, like that SNES baseball game where a japanese guy had to name american baseball players and they went with silly ones like "Bob McBurnin", so it is silly. Megundal is a japanese term for greed or greediness as far as I recall. In this, I much prefer the localization's change.

McGuilded is an absolutely fantastic way of localizing Megundal. Not only does it carry similar connotations, but it even sounds similar.

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4 hours ago, Jotari said:

Curious. Did the fan translations have any accents or dialects at all? Because it's far from Magnus McGuilded alone. Most of the characters have pretty distinct accents based on region and class.

I haven't played the fan translation, I just looked into it because the discussion of McGilded's accent made me curious. From what I've seen, Gina was given an accent like the one she has in the official localization. Bruce Fairplay is implied to be Australian in the English version, which I don't think he is in the Japanese version.

11 hours ago, Rapier said:

The former is a japanese person trying to guess how an englishman/irishman would be named in the 18th century, like that SNES baseball game where a japanese guy had to name american baseball players and they went with silly ones like "Bob McBurnin", so it is silly.

Some of the non-Holmes reference English characters had some Engrishy names like Adam Ladyfirst and Egg Benedict, and Hart Vortex technically sounds fine but is just two English words put together, so I'm glad the localization got creative with it. Unlike the Investigations 2 fan translation, the fan translation for GAA didn't change anyone's names as far as I know.

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I beat the first two cases of the second game. Might as well comment on them now.

Case 1:

Spoiler

Well, already that was probably my favorite excuse for a tutorial in a sequel out of all the games in the series that I have played. Ryutaro is a really unique concept and "his" design beats Ryunosuke's by a long shot. Kinda saddens me that he's stuck to a single case. Mikotoba, being Ryutaro's dad, was a fatherly assistant, which was an interesting change of pace. I loved his reaction to naming him the victim of the case.

Other than that, it was a bit more mundane than the first game's first case. Brett being the victim was shocking and Rei was a fun defendant, but the twists were more predictable and Menimemo made for a less interesting villain. Well... That is, until he showed up out of nowhere and had just enough time to drop the bombshell that Professor Mikotoba, of all people, might be a bad guy before he got bodied by the Japanese judge. Who then proceeded to give his name, which means he's definitely going to be back.

Honestly, those last five minutes might've been the best part of the case, but that's not to say it was bad otherwise. Auchi and his growth were hilarious, and it was nice to see Hosonoga back, as well as a confident, even slightly arrogant (though still skittish) Soseki. Like the first game's first case, it's solid, if a little unimpressive when compared to the ones that follow (and in this one's case, precede) it.

Case 2:

Spoiler

Kinda ate my words there. I said case four of the last game felt like a filler case, so they brought it back in the coolest of ways. I love how it explained loose ends that I didn't even know were there, such as what the heck the victim was doing in Briar Road.  I suppose between the two of them they do make a sort of filler-ish two-parter, but... Honestly, it's fine. I love them and the fact that they're connected anyway. Plus, it was a nice excuse to get some more Susato in the second game.

As for the plot of the case itself, I love how the game immediately went back to GAA's honored tradition of breaking every Ace Attorney convention by making not just one, but TWO victims be the culprits. That's just unbelievable. Every time I think they couldn't possibly bend the formula any further, they go and do it. I mean, seriously!? The victim of the case, and the victim of the previous case?!

Finally, the case tossed a McGuffin in its final three minutes. Sholmes acted shady as he tends to do, and then Gregson ran off with the McGuffin. Guess there's nothing to do but wait till the game goes back to that.

Lastly... I just want to say something about case 3. I haven't gotten too far into it yet, but there's one part already that's really piqued my interest.

Spoiler

Visiting Van Zieks's office was... enlightening, to say the least. So far he's been an extremely interesting character, but not one that I would say I "liked", exactly. He's a pretty huge dick, to say nothing of his racist remarks. He was different in his office, however. He asked how Natsume was doing, he took offense when Ryunosuke and Iris were speculating that he had corpses in his barrels (like, he literally called Runo "man", I wasn't expecting that sort of talk from him), he whined about Runo making him break his hallowed challices by being an idiot... he even admitted, when talking about how all defendants prosecuted by him are scum of the earth, that things "had changed" since Runo arrived in England.

I dunno, he felt surprisingly... emotional, for a lack of a better word, in this part of the game. He even had by far the most understanding and respectful response to being shown the armband out of everyone in the duology so far. The way he grasped his own badge while talking about "reminding yourself of who helped you become what you are today" makes me think his own trinket has some history behind it. I would love to see this side of him be expanded. Though, of course, I expect it to be expanded.

...I'll admit, the main reason I'm making this post at all instead of waiting until I finish the game is that I want to go on record and call it right now.

Spoiler

I have no idea how it could be possible, but the chin of that dude in the cloak looks WAY too much like Kazuma's. I mgiht be freaking out here. I tend to overthink things when I play plot-focused games. But I could swear it's Kazuma.

Crazy speculation aside, I am 100% certain he's Japanese. The way he bowed when he briefly spoke with Van Zieks and Ryunosuke's comment that he seemed familiar somehow are very clear clues. Will look forward to finding more about this masked fellow as well.

 

On 9/11/2021 at 2:32 AM, Lightchao42 said:

Egg Benedict

I'm not even sure if this qualifies as a spoiler, but for caution's sake, I'll put it in a box.

Spoiler

"I need to come up with a fake name. One that will get me in that pawnbrokery without raising any eyebrows. Hmmm... Let's see..."

Stares at plate.

"Egg. Perfect. Nobody will suspect a thing."

Kinda wish they'd kept it ngl

 

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23 hours ago, Saint Rubenio said:

I'm not even sure if this qualifies as a spoiler, but for caution's sake, I'll put it in a box.

Did Eggert Benedict invent eggs Benedict in the Ace Attorney universe? Soseki is 33 and the real life Soseki Natsume was born in 1867, which would place most of the games' events in the year 1900. There isn't a clear story about how eggs Benedict was invented, but some stories have it be invented by then and it was popularized in New York City. Truly this is the biggest mystery of The Great Ace Attorney saga...

Anyway, The Return of the Great Departed Soul:

Spoiler

The second case only had two new characters (considering Shamspeare and Metermann's appearance in G1-4), and it seems the developers were saving their budget for this case. This case has seven new characters (Harebrayne, Tusspells, Lune, Gotts, Sithe, Sithe's daughter(?), and Drebber), plus six new jurors. 

Harebrayne is a good defendant who values SCIENCE and offers a unique dilemma during the first trial (do you insist on his innocence, even if it makes him out to be a fraud?), and he apologizes later for acting unreasonable. The robot man Enoch Drebber is the star of the case, with his cool introduction, design, animations, plan, backstory... and I want to know where he bought his outfit from. Not bad for someone whose namesake was the victim of the first Holmes story. Oddly enough, Drebber isn't the culprit despite doing most of the work in this crime; Sithe is the one who killed the victim, and to think we usually have to wait until the end of the game to convict government officials. Her strategy during the trial results in her not saying much, but her confessing to avoid being caught her murder is pretty clever. This case introduces her very creepy plague doctor daughter who will likely be important later. Tusspells is cool as well and is more involved in the case than I expected, but she didn't endear me to the idea of wax museums however.

After a whole game-and-a-half of build up, the midpoint case had plenty of reveals: Yujin and Judge Jigoku are coming to Britain, Stronghart is aiming to become Attorney General, "Jezaille Brett" wasn’t a student and her real name is A. Shinn (the mysterious fourth name at the end of the last game), and Kazuma’s body disappeared after his “death”. Hmm… Also, Susato learned about The Hound of the Baskervilles from her father’s office, which makes more sense by the end of the case. Oh yeah, the first trial had no assistant, which is still pretty unique as far as AA goes. Susato returns in a timely fashion to ensure that doesn't happen for the rest of the game.

I didn't expect Gina to be as important as she ended up being back when she appeared in G1-3, and she's gone from a solitary pickpocket to an investigator in training. Gregson is basically her mentor/father figure now, which is hopefully to make up for trying to throw her under the bus back when she was tried for murder. Completing the set is the good boy Toby, who quickly establishes himself as a helpful police dog by helping us find Drebber's workshop. Gregson said he and Gina are being relocated to France (to protect her from the Reaper) but hopefully they'll still show up in the following two cases.

Another thing this case does well is fleshing out van Zieks. Though he's still the CEO of Racism, his respect for Ryunosuke has carried over from the end of G1-5 even if his demeanor makes it hard to tell. His friendship with Harebrayne is surprisingly sincere and sweet coming from the vampire prosecutor, and his pep talk at the end is quite memorable. Despite his earlier claims that he doesn't mind his reputation, we see that even Barok himself buys into the Reaper's curse and is afraid of it, which serves well to humanize him. Van Zieks trusts Ryunosuke and Susato enough to share with them the Professor's identity, which is a good sign of respect on his part. We still didn't learn the truth of the Reaper, so it seems we'll learn that later. The fact that Soseki is safe in Japan supports the idea that "the Reaper" is an actual person and not some kind of curse, however.

The whole time I assumed the Professor was Klint van Zieks, because why would they keep his identity secret if he isn't someone we've heard of? So I thought it was weird when he turned out to be a random Japanese guy, but not really because he's actually Kazuma's father. He traveled to London with Dr. Mikotoba and Judge Jikoku sixteen years ago, and he's the reason van Zieks will never forgive the Japanese. The Professor killings are the subject of The Hound of the Baskervilles, and the secrecy of the case explains why Sholmes didn't want it published. We don't get the details of what really happened in the Professor case, or who shot the Professor when he rose from the dead, but the game still has to save surprises for later.

And finally, the big reveal of the case is that Kazuma is alive! ...Of course, I was spoiled in advance that Kazuma didn't die, but I didn't know the circumstances behind his survival or what his role would be. I wasn't expecting his survival to be revealed in this case though, and I respect that the game didn't keep it secret for too long. That isn't to say the apprentice's identity was obvious to everyone; I've seen people who thought he was Susato or Sholmes. Since Stronghart tasked van Zieks with mentoring Kazuma as a prosecutor, I'm guessing van Zieks will be the defendant of the final case and Kazuma will be the prosecutor. We'll see, but it's good that Nikolina is now exonerated. ...Speaking of which, we never learned what happened to Nikolina's cat, did we?

 

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On 9/10/2021 at 4:35 PM, Jotari said:

Curious. Did the fan translations have any accents or dialects at all? Because it's far from Magnus McGuilded alone. Most of the characters have pretty distinct accents based on region and class.

Gina and Gregson had accents (Gregson just cut words like in the localization, but Gina actually "ate" them more in the fantranslation). I don't remember the rest from the fan translation and I have no idea what an english/irish/scottish accent should read like. It was these two that read the most distinctively to me.

On 9/10/2021 at 9:32 PM, Lightchao42 said:

Some of the non-Holmes reference English characters had some Engrishy names like Adam Ladyfirst and Egg Benedict, and Hart Vortex technically sounds fine but is just two English words put together, so I'm glad the localization got creative with it. Unlike the Investigations 2 fan translation, the fan translation for GAA didn't change anyone's names as far as I know.

Which reminds me that "Lord Chief Justice Stronghart" sounds like a Yugioh E-Hero card.

Also, case 3 was interesting. I expected something super convoluted like AA4-3 with a stupid reason for the defendant to be admitted in court even (I still think it's absurd that they accepted Zieks's theory that teleportation magic is possible, but then again 18th century), but I rather enjoyed the characters and the mystery. Sometimes it just feels like it could've explored more of the introduced characters. Ivy Soul Calibur seemed interesting.

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I completed case 3 of the second game yesterday. Here are some thoughts.

Spoiler

God damnit, of course Sithe was evil. An older woman in a game that's had a grand total of four women who aren't underaged? Naturally she had to be evil. And now to wait for the moment when they officially add her most likely underaged daughter to the pile. Oh, well... At least Tusspells managed to get out unscathed. Is it too much to ask that she returns?

All jokes aside, I really enjoyed that case. While Harebrayne was probably the most uninteresting defendant in this duology so far, his connection to Van Zieks gave him some depth, and it allowed to develop that kinder side of the man that was unseen up to this point. Discovering the trick and chasing after Drebber was cool, and digging up the details about the old Professor case was quite interesting. As for the characters, it was great to see the reformed Gina as an overconfident, lazy rookie detective; Toby's way too cute and Tusspells is just generally likeable. The villains also had some of the coolest designs in the game so far. Drebber's shit-eating grin was too good.

I do feel that Sithe had some wasted potential. She could've been a recurring character in the past cases, maybe even the first game as well. Popping up occassionally to speak with Stronghart, showing her close relationship with the man and her importance in Scotland Yard, before she turned out to be the unexpected culprit in this case. Making a recurring character the culprit would've been one more subversion of the formula among the many that this duology has done so far, and it would've allowed for more screentime for the most badass character design and theme I've seen so far. Alas, it was not to be.

Finally, the twist with Kazuma was pretty amazing, even if I did call it almost instantly (I still have no idea how I managed to recognize his chin, to be perfectly honest). Thinking back, it gladdens me that it didn't come completely out of nowhere. Everyone assumed he broke his neck and that's why he had no visible injuries. But of course, there was the other, simpler explanation that didn't even occur to me: That he wasn't dead at all. I hope someone told Pavlova. The poor girl deserves to know she's not a killer after all.

I'm at the start of case 4 now. Here's a thought I want to share before I go any further. This might contain a spoiler for case 4 or case 5. I don't know which one yet, so proceed with caution.

Spoiler

I believe I mentioned at one point how I went into this series having eaten two spoilers beforehand. One of them was Kazuma's death, which happened early on and wasn't even the end of that, so it was kind of whatever. The other, however, was Gregson's death... Or so I thought.

It has been a long time since I read about it while exploring the Ace Attorney wiki. But now I'm not so sure. Gregson dropped some pretty huge death flags in case 3, but at the same time, as soon as he arrived in London, Mikotoba didn't waste any time before dropping exactly the same death flag that Kazuma did in the first game right before he tripped over a cat. Mikotoba also has a stache and looks similar'ish to Gregson in his dashing new outfit (mainly because the hat is the same type), which makes me think I might've mistaken the two. It was such a long time, I didn't know the first thing about this duology back then, and my memories of it are foggy, so... I dunno. It's perfectly possible that I might've made such a mistake.

One of them's dead for sure. Which one remains to be seen. It's probably still Gregson, but I'm happy to have doubts. It won't entirely salvage the moment, but at least there'll be some form of surprise. Don't tell me now!

 

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Twisted Karma and His Last Bow (Investigation 1 and Trial 1):

Spoiler

After being set up in the previous case, Yujin and Judge Jigoku finally arrive in Britain. Jigoku is certainly a jovial guy when he's off duty. They knew Kazuma's body disappeared in Hong Kong, but not that he was still alive. It seems there was some family drama with the Mikotobas around the time Susato was born; maybe her mother died in childbirth? Yujin tries to tell Ryunosuke something but it interrupted, so we'll probably learn that later. I'm sure the both of them will be important to the upcoming cases.

Sholmes has Ronald McDonald hair now and sells out two red-haired guys to Gina, and they'll probably be important later. Gregson was apparently invited but didn't show up for some reason. We learn that Sholmes did fake Kazuma's death, but he didn't plan for him to disappear in Hong Kong; it seems he was working for someone he regrets trusting at the time. Sholmes gets a request to find a woman's husband (she being a juror in the last case, a clever use of resources), but he makes 'Oddo and Sooze look for clues because he's ashamed about having red hair.

We learn from Barry Caidin, the Scottish jail governor who loves tea and cookies, will never forgive the Japanese, and resembles Senator Armstrong with a mustache, that Vigil was fired ten years ago and kept it secret from Evie since then. Just like in The Incredibles, but not as long in that case. Then we return to Sholmes's residence and...

Gregson noooooooo! Poor Ginny! Van Zieks nooooooooo!

Honestly I had an uneasy feeling that the final victim would be someone important, but I developed a liking for Gregson and I hoped nothing bad would happen to him. I'm still depressed about it. Victims who die after the case they're introduced in is still very uncommon, much less someone who's been in half of the duology's cases. Maybe I'll have some fish and chips in Gregson's honor one of these days. Also, while Gina is appropriately emotional and Sholmes gets unusually serious when he hears the news, Iris initially doesn't seem to react much to Gregson's death. It's especially odd considering their "unique" relationship. She's more emotional if you show her one of Gregson's items during the second investigation, so at least the developers had attention to that detail.

That aside, we learn quite a bit about Gregson; not only does he have something of a legendary reputation, he also went on many of his own secret investigations and played a large role in solving the Professor case ten years ago. He was a big fan of van Zieks too. Van Zieks says it's strange for a Scotland Yard officer to be relocated to France, so could there be something up with that?

Van Zieks is the one accused of murdering Gregson, and as I predicted previously, Kazuma is the one prosecuting him. Naturally Van Zieks was the prosecutor for Genshin Asogi's case, taking over from Stronghart who was a prosecutor at the time. Stronghart is looking increasingly shady and doesn't seem too hung up about his best prosecutor being accused of murder, because he (and everyone else) views this case as a reckoning for the mystery of the Reaper. Stronghart has a quote here I find pretty funny, as to why he had Kazuma wear a mask as van Zieks's apprentice: "I didn't want to burden Lord van Zieks with tiresome explanations about why he had an Eastern apprentice."

The Professor apparently went after corrupt members of society, similar to the Reaper's modus operandi. Hmm... Van Zieks believes Kazuma wants revenge on him for his father's death, but Kazuma is quite distant about his motives so who knows of that's true. While Kazuma is indeed more distant than he was before, he thanks Ryunosuke for carrying on his mission as a lawyer and still appears to consider him a friend. As a side note, I like Kazuma's new white outfit, it contrasts Ryunosuke's black outfit well.

Van Zieks being a defendant gives him even more development. Van Zieks has been quite miserable ever since his brother died; notably he has never smiled up to this point, not even smugly like most prosecutors before him. Though it was apparent before, he explains how Genshin's betrayal is the reason he resents the Japanese, even though he knows it's illogical to think that way. Despite that, van Zieks acknowledges Ryunosuke's dedication to finding the truth and, reluctantly, asks Ryunosuke to defend him. Of course, he accepts.

Due to the importance of van Zieks's trial, there is no jury, which is a shame because I liked seeing who the jurors were. Guess the budget couldn't afford it, huh? Kazuma, during van Zieks's first testimony, shows us what it's like to be on the receiving end of a usual AA protagonist's strategy by using evidence to find a contradiction in his testimony. Now we know how all those prosecutors felt... Kazuma as a prosecutor is much more aggressive and cold than usual, either because he has a vendetta with van Zieks and/or because he knows this case is related to Genshin's death. He also doesn't take nonsense from dishonest witnesses; another defense attorney habit, presumably.

Gossip being Daley Vigil all along was quite a surprise; I thought Venus would end up being the most important of the three witnesses, since her fireworks were presumably used to throw off the time of death. And Beppo is here too, apparently having lost his omnibus driver job after G1-3. The redhead bros are a fun pair of criminal witnesses like the Skulkins were, even if their main role is to establish Vigil's connection to the case. The end of the segment reveals that Vigil has been secretly working with Gregson for some time now, and he indeed helped Genshin escape his execution. Still, we're no closer to finding out who killed Gregson. To be continued...

 

Edited by Lightchao42

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Well, that's that. I finished GAA2 yesterday. Here are some thoughts.

Case 4:

Spoiler

Jigoku and Mikotoba arriving with their sweet, sweet English outfits was a great start to the case. Jigoku is a really fun character, I really wish he had more screentime than he got, and Mikotoba is as vaguely suspicious as ever. Like, c'mon, the first thing he does as he arrives is drop a death flag? The same death flag as Kazuma, no less.

Unfortunately, I had been spoiled Gregson's death, but it was still difficult to watch Gina and Sholmes's reactions, and the bobbies at the scene being devastated by his passing was a great detail too. And, of course, having Van Zieks as a defendant sheds a whole new light on him. He's a lot less confrontational.

After that, we get a colorful cast of one-offs. Venus, Gossip and Sandwich (that's the only name he's ever had, yessir) were fun to watch. Gossip is a pretty direct reference to the Sherlock Holmes story, the man with the crooked lip, which you'd think would've made me, someone who has read the story, immediately call the twist, but... Somehow I didn't. I was slow on the uptake there. I still managed to figure it out ahead of time when I realized his hairstyle was nearly identical to Vigil's. Vigil himself was a really tragic character, I wanted to reach out and give him a pat in the back, the poor guy. As for the two criminal idiots, they're reminiscent of the Skulkin brothers, but I think I like these two more. They had a better dynamic and I liked their designs better.

Like in the past case, the actual case being investigated was overshadowed a bit by the truth about the professor being dredged out. Not only that, but also the truth about Mikotoba, of all people. I must say, these two cases have elevated Mikotoba pretty high in my eyes. The guy was a great red herring. Menimemo's final words before being taken away seemed to imply that he was shady, a fact only reinforced by him manipulating Susato into leaving the country. And then... It turns out he was Watson all along. And in retrospect, I odn't know how I didn't make the connection. I mean, just look at him in his English outfit. He's Watson. No two ways about it. He has all the looks of the stereotypical Watson, through and through. Heck, he looks more like Watson than the game's own Watson Wilson! I loved that reveal. It was super great, and I didn't see it coming at all.

...Gotta say, though, that was the single most frustrating dance of deduction in the entire game. Herlock's yapping on and on about some nonsense about the King of Germany and I'm like "Sholmes shut the fuck up and let me confirm that Mikotoba is alive." But at least he had the decency to reveal that he made sure Pavlova didn't end up in trouble for the accidental murder that he knew full well she hadn't committed. Ever since Kazuma was revealed to be alive I was wondering about her.

And with that... the case comes to an end, because it turns out the final case is just the conclusion to this one. I can't say I was expecting it. I've heard there was another Ace Attorney that did this, but I haven't played the 3DS games, so I can't say. At one point I considered discussing both of these cases at the same time, but that'd in itself be a spoiler, so I'm splitting up my thoughts.

Case 5:

Spoiler

What a way to end the game. That was such an intense trial. Jigoku wasn't that unexpected of a villain, and like with Sithe, I wish we'd seen more of him before he took the witness stand, but any gripes I might've had disappeared when I got to see Mikotoba tap dancing. Not gonna lie, I think that's my favorite scene in the game. I must say - and please don't crucify me for this - I didn't enjoy the dances of deduction that much. While Herlock's idiocy was entertaining at times, they were a bit too slow for my liking, for the most part, and quite often I found myself going "yes, yes, I know what happened here, can we please hurry this along?". This one, though? Super fast paced, now that Herlock's serious and has an experienced partner to help him along. The only part I didn't like was the code of the trunk. I straight up flipped a screenshot of the game and I still could swear that one of those numbers a 6. Ended up having to look up the solution. Fss. But... well, it was worth it just to see Mikotoba tap dancing.

The revelation that Jigoku had Gregson's corpse in his trunk the entire time in the hotel scene was chilling. Speaking of Gregson, I really like how they handled him. He comes across as pretty shady in the first game, but it feels as though when he works with Graydon he only does it out of desperation. Then he saves Gina from the slums and takes her under his wing, as if he wanted to make it up to her, and it feels "hey, maybe you're a decent guy after all." And then it turns out he's basically the second-in-command of the Reaper operation. Wow. Now that, I did not see coming.
I do feel it's a bit weird how they treat him like he was a good guy who was forced into doing terrible things by Stronghart, though. He did protect Gina from the Reaper (I mean, he was the Reaper, so that was easily done), but still, he did a few too many bad things to warrant the positive treatment he got from the characters. Still, really like what they did with him. It was... unique.

Then there's the reveal that the Professor was Klint Van Zieks. I figured it out ahead of time, but it was still great. His motivation is so sad, too. The guy was a bit like his brother, watching so much corruption unveil in front of his eyes, but he did not have Barok's fortitude of character. He snapped, and became a murderer... and then he was forced to sink even deeper by Stronghart. Watching Barok break as he was forced to face the truth was difficult. But it had to be done.

Kazuma was another part of the case that I loved. While I kinda wish he had turned out to be Gregson's murderer after all (now that would've been unexpected), I do love how he acts. He's like a rabid dog, pursuing revenge on Van Zieks by any means necessary. You can still see traces of his former self, however... because, when you stop to think about it, he didn't change that much. We just didn't get to know him that well before his "death." Now we know. He never was the perfect guy that Ryunosuke thought he was.

...Funnily enough, amidst all of these wonderful characters and storylines, the main baddie fell flat on his father. Stronghart was extremely obviously evil from the second he was introduced in the first game, and once he's revealed, he's... Gant 2? That's it? Now, don't get me wrong, I love Gant, but Stronghart just didn't have the same impact. I feel he was rather unmemorable. And the way he was taken down was... Bleh. Herlock inventing hologram technology came completely out of left field and I'll admit it took me out of it for a while. So yeah, overall, not a fan of Stronghart. Bit of a shame, because he's surrounded by excellence, and his breakdown is admittedly the greatest thing ever.

Honestly, I'm probably forgetting some things. These are some messy thoughts. But... yeah. I really, really liked that. Stronghart being a bit of a disappointment aside, everything about these two cases was just wonderful. Really good way to end the game.

Final thoughts:

Spoiler

I loved that game. The few gripes I had were small, and otherwise, it's a great AA experience. Darker than most, I liked that too. And the way it broke every convention... Wow, that was good. Criminal victims, criminal defendants, criminal judges, criminal detectives, crazy accidents where nobody is at fault... So good. I'd definitely place the two GAAs at the top of the Ace Attorney games I've played.

I don't know if they beat Investigations 2, though. While the cases in GAA are more connected than most, there's still some filler and some unrelated business. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not a filler hater, but one of my favorite things about I2 is how every single case, every single thing that happens in the game is deeply related to the bigger plot. It's a really tightly tied together game, and I love it for it. Also, while GAA has some excellent villains that I would place above at least some of I2's secondaries (McGilded, Shamspeare, Green, Drebber), Stronghart does NOT come even close to I2's main villain. It's not even a contest.

Overall, while they're really, really close, I'd say I2 still beats this one. But that doesn't mean I think any less of GAA for it. The fact that it's this close to my favorite AA speaks volumes of how much I've enjoyed this game, and there are plenty of things that I do feel it does better.

Wow, I got a bit carried away there. That got long. And now I can finally listen to the soundtrack and open spoiler boxes without fear or regret. Man, that feels good!

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Hmm, so it turns out the fourth case doesn't have a second trial. Will the last case only have one trial, or two trials and an investigation between them? Being near the end of the game is a melancholy feeling. Soon, the last cometh...

Twisted Karma and His Last Bow (Investigation 2):

Spoiler

No game, I won't have you sully Gregson's good name! He was probably trying to find out the Reaper's identity on his own and got killed for it. Alternatively, he was involved in the Reaper squad, had a change of heart due to Gina, and got killed because he tried to get out of it. The passport indicates he was indeed going to leave the country with Gina at least. Also, it turns out Brett/Shinn was apparently the hitman of the Reaper organization. If Gregson and Shinn really are the two parts of the Reaper, then we have no one left to confront over it. The two latest people who avoided convicted by van Zieks were killed by different people, so we'll see if the Reaper was involved with those.

Van Zieks and Vigil have basically nothing bad to say about Genshin, up until he killed people anyway, and he even saved Barok's life after killing Klint. I wonder if the will Caidin kept really was the secret weapon Genshin wrote. Vigil himself didn't fake Genshin's execution and help him escape, so the identity of that person is still a mystery.

Yujin's request was for Ryunosuke to return to Japan with him. And Sholmes had an urgent telegram for Japan, so I wonder if he figured out something important...

Kazuma was resourceful enough to make his way from Hong Kong to Britain with nothing but the clothes on his back, even with amnesia. Truly every case would be over in ten minutes if Kazuma was the main character. We learn that the "noble, upstanding" Kazuma and the "relentless avenger of the past" Kazuma are both the real Kazuma; while he still values his friendship with Ryunosuke, he won't let it get in the way of convicting van Zieks. He genuinely believes van Zieks to be the Reaper and guilty of killing Gregson, so the trial isn't just a way to find the truth. We also get confirmation that discovering the truth of his father's death was Kazuma's true mission in Britain all along. On another note, Kazuma gets some funny lines while examining van Zieks's office. "Perhaps you have to like birds to attain rank in the judiciary here... Although bats aren't birds, of course." Simon Blackquill would fit right in. And van Zieks apparently sorts his wine casks, glasses, and bottles all on his own.

Kazuma gets another interesting line: "Apparently, one of my father's apprentices even took the blade's name for a surname." So Manfred von Karma's ancestor was trained by Genshin Asogi! I was surprised because, outside of Ryunosuke and Auchi being the ancestors of Phoenix and the Paynes, this game has no other references to the rest of the Ace Attorney games. Though I'm not sure if the von Karmas have Japanese ancestry, or if the training occurred while Genshin was in Britain.

Maria Gorey, while unhealthily obsessed with dead people, is surprisingly helpful and honest, moreso than her mother. She's dedicated to performing proper autopsies and doesn't like letting orders from above getting in the way of that, plus she's ashamed of what we found out about Sithe in the last case. I was wondering why she doesn't have Sithe's last name or even her maiden name; the game even points this out but doesn't answer it.

Gina is the only person willing to defend Gregson's honor. It's funny how Ryunosuke's response to her covertly looking at Gregson's diary is "That's our Gina!" The last name in Gregson's diary of the Reaper's victims is a name Gina found unusual, so I wonder what it is? Shinn also comes up frequently in the diary. Ryunosuke falls unconscious after being viciously licked by Toby, but unfortunately I didn't get the accolade for talking to Gina after that happened. I couldn't find her after Ryunosuke woke up and I was distracted after that by the plot.

Our weirdest deduction yet leads us to discover that John H. Wilson wasn't Sholmes's partner after all: it was actually Yujin Mikotoba! That caught me off guard, what a surprising twist. Since Iris gave herself the last name "Wilson" from the autopsy report, which Wilson didn't actually write, it raises the question as to who her real father is (assuming he isn't Yujin, giving Susato a new younger sister), and what was so special about the actual Wilson that Brett killed him. Personally, I'm putting my money on Shamspeare being Iris's father.

For heck's sake, we're going into the final case of the second game and we still don't know the motive of the first culprit of the first game. There are some other remaining questions too: Who is the true Reaper? Is Genshin the Professor or not? What is the significance of the four names? And just what happened to Nikolina's cat?

Since I'm going into the final case, I'll mention the last two spoilers I know about (obvious major spoilers for the last case, don't click by accident):

Spoiler

Firstly, Stronghart is the main villain. I mean, he has an imposing presence and is politically the most powerful character in the game, so obviously we were going up against him at some point. What, is Queen Victoria going to be the final villain? Granted, him being the main villain doesn't mean he killed Gregson, but most final villains in this series are culprits of the final case. Stronghart has been generally reasonable up until G2-4, and I'm still not sure what his motives are. Maybe he wants full control of the legal system to ensure that no criminal escapes justice, like Damon Gant. I assumed throughout the game that Kazuma would be his secret minion of sorts, but it seems that isn't the case.

Second, Klint van Zieks is a killer. Not necessarily that he's the culprit of a case, but just that he killed people. As a since note, this is the only spoiler I learned after the localized version released. Upon learning of this I assumed he was the true identity of the Reaper, and then I thought he was the Professor until he was revealed to be Genshin. And now Shinn is apparently the Reaper, so I don't know what to think at this point. Maybe Klint actually committed the Professor killings and Genshin was the scapegoat. If his death was faked and he's actually still alive, I'll be disappointed if he isn't a deranged murder hobo at this point like Dimitri.

 

11 hours ago, Saint Rubenio said:

Well, that's that. I finished GAA2 yesterday. Here are some thoughts.

Case 4:

To comment on something you said here:

Spoiler
11 hours ago, Saint Rubenio said:

But at least he had the decency to reveal that he made sure Pavlova didn't end up in trouble for the accidental murder that he knew full well she hadn't committed. Ever since Kazuma was revealed to be alive I was wondering about her.

I must have missed this line of dialogue, what did Sholmes say about that? I was wondering if Nikolina was ever charged with anything after allegedly killing Kazuma, since Strogenov said he would turn himself in for framing Ryunosuke I thought she might have been punished too. Ryunosuke and Susato at least imply that living with the knowledge of "killing" Kazuma is punishment enough for her.

 

Edited by Lightchao42

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15 hours ago, Lightchao42 said:
Spoiler

Personally, I'm putting my money on Shamspeare being Iris's father.

 

Ah yes, you can totally see the resemblance.

Spoiler
X2kbvbua o

 

15 hours ago, Lightchao42 said:

To comment on something you said here:

  Hide contents

I must have missed this line of dialogue, what did Sholmes say about that? I was wondering if Nikolina was ever charged with anything after allegedly killing Kazuma, since Strogenov said he would turn himself in for framing Ryunosuke I thought she might have been punished too. Ryunosuke and Susato at least imply that living with the knowledge of "killing" Kazuma is punishment enough for her.

 

Spoiler

At one point Ryunosuke or Susato, I don't remember which, express concern about Nikolina and Sholmes reassures them that he explained the situation to the police and she was able to travel to America as she wanted. No mention as to what became of Strogenov. Might be a little further from where you are, though. Not entirely sure.

 

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42 minutes ago, Saint Rubenio said:

 

  Reveal hidden contents

At one point Ryunosuke or Susato, I don't remember which, express concern about Nikolina and Sholmes reassures them that he explained the situation to the police and she was able to travel to America as she wanted. No mention as to what became of Strogenov. Might be a little further from where you are, though. Not entirely sure.

 

Maybe it's some kind of optional dialogue I missed, or it's in the investigation of case 5. I suppose I'll find out soon enough.

Speaking of, I was expecting G2-5 to just be one long trial, but it turns out it has an investigation segment as well. While I'm posting I might as well talk about the first trial...

The Resolve of Ryunosuke Naruhodo (Trial 1):

Spoiler

So it seems the big thing of this case is Mael Stronghart taking over as the judge. Him firing Gina from Scotland Yard is a truly unforgivable act of villainy, but otherwise he's fairly reasonable despite presumably really wanting to control the outcome of the trial.

We learn the actual crime scene was on a steamship, not Gregson's base. He was allegedly there to assassinate the Reaper's latest target, Judge Jigoku. Poor Gina is the only person left to have any faith in Gregson... Also, Kazuma was apparently the planned assassin, and he seemingly present when Gregson was killed. Just what is going on anymore? It was nice to see van Zieks perform his magnificent leg slam when on the witness bench. Pray forgive the discourtesy...

Surprisingly enough, we get a segment where Sholmes and Mikotoba investigate the SS Grouse. So walkie-talkies were invented by Iris in the AA universe? Mikotoba even becomes a playable character, similar to how Maya was briefly playable during 2-4. He has a fun dynamic with Sholmes and the final (presumably) deduction was enjoyable to experience and an interesting new look at Yujin.

As a side note, around when the localization was first announced/released, I heard there were two characters named Bif Strogenov and Tchiken Strogenov when on the topic of name changes. I was expecting Tchiken to show up during G1-2, and when he didn't I spent the whole of both games wondering when he would appear. When approaching the end of GAA2 I decided I must have misremembered and he didn't actually exist, but here he is!

Tchiken having the combination on his arm that appears to be "Sholmes" upside down is a clever detail, and I wonder how it worked in the Japanese version. Was it just "holmes" and it was a six digit code? Anyway, it appears Gregson was actually murdered in Jigoku's cabin, so he's seeming very suspicious...

 

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Just finished Case 4 of the first game (yeah I'm making  my way slowly through it). I like how for the first time in the series it's not a murder case. That's something I've been kind of wanting them to do randomly for a while. Other minor non spoiler things that are fun to note, I like how the British characters deliver measurements in imperial and the Japanese characters have to convey it to metric. I have no idea if this is historically accurate, I suspect not, but it's fun  nonetheless, and even if it is inaccurate it lends some difference to the culture in the game. The last thing of note that does seem way more accurate are some of the British characters just casually talking about God. This is  it something you see in the modern period Ace Attorney, or most others,  and it makes sense. People were a lot more religious back then and would be more inclined to attribute things as blessings from God. And I really like how it's just there irrevenlently, it's not made a big deal about and isn't a defining trait.

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I finally finished the first game. Holy cow are the cases long in this game. Though aside from the first case I don't exactly feel like they overstay their welcome. I'd just sort of like for them to be broken up a bit more with a second investigation. The game at least seems to be aware of this as they do note how long the trials are in universe. The lack of the classic formula of two investigations and two trials is something that I kind of miss. On one hand I do like how they use the lack of it for more freedom, having an investigation only in case 2 and a trial only in case 3, but I feel that these investigations exist for a reason. Such lengthy trials can be exhausting to play through, or make you loose interest without more significant breaks. I hope they go back to more standard formulas in the second game, much of this game feels like it's trying to find it's footing with the new series. Only in the final case did it feel like the game had really reached the point where it had settled into it's own world. From the perspective at least I'm glad they released both games at once, as I'm guessing this whole thing is going to feel more like one big long game rather than two with the way it ended on the cliff hanger (Mael Stronghart existing and doing practically nothing also feels like setup for the future, I also expect the villain of the first case to come back and am a bit surprise they didn't in this game). Though I think I'll play Metroid Dread before jumping back into it.

Of the cases in the game case 3 really stands out as interesting. In fact I speculate that it's the whole reason this new setting exists. They wanted to do something like case 3 but knew it wouldn't really work with Phoenix, so they invented another new rookie lawyer to build a character arc out of it (and since they had already invented new rookie lawyers twice for Phoenix now, setting it in a different era was the best way around it.

Overall the cases were of unexpectedly high quality, but I feel the gameplay was lacking. I know it's sort of a weird thing to complain about with an Ace Attorney game, they don't even have gameplay! But they do though. And the gameplay in this was very linear. It didn't feel like there was a whole lot of investigating going on in the investigation segments. It was more just watching the plot unfold. I remember in case 4 you had barely any evidence before actually going to trial, and not a whole lot more in case 5 either. Makes me really appreciate the psycelocks in Phoenix's games. Sure they might be a bit immersion breaking to have a bunch of people around in different locations just waiting for you to present the right things to them, but it does do a lot more to make a sense of progression and of actually figuring the mystery out. Here there's basically only ever one place you're meant to go to and a few things you have to find (not entirely unlike the Investigation games, and that was an issue I had with them too). Even in the Invesitgation only case it involved only three areas with one of them basically not existing. It feels like  you could take out the "move to another area" aspect of this game really easily and nothing about the experience would actually change.

Last minor gripe, kind of bothers me how British the voice actors for the Japanese characters sound. Like normally I'd actually prefer a few British voice acting talent getting in there instead of the same American voices, but like I brought up earlier in the thread, this game actually put a lot of effort into distinguishing different English dialects. It's an actual feature of the game. As is the nationality of the main characters. So having them have the most stereotypical British voices for the cutscenes kind of ruins that. Getting the right Japanese voice actors who are fluent in English might have been too much effort for a localization studio, but I think they could have at least attempted more neutral accents.

Edited by Jotari

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I haven't picked up the game yet. Its on my to do list. But the setting should be a blast. 

In the main series you play in Japanafornia where you've got snow storms, Japanese temples and eastern culture in sunny, all American California. 

So logically speaking the prequel should take place in uh...GermanoBritania where you've got English court wigs, tea and a big clock tower in Imperial Germany. 

Edited by Etrurian emperor

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