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Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney is the fourth game in the Ace Attorney series. It represents several firsts for the series, being the first to be released on the Nintendo DS other than the ports of the original Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney trilogy. It is also the first full Ace Attorney game for which Kazuya Nuri contributed original art assets, having previously done so for the bonus episode Rise from the Ashes of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. Additionally, the game is a sort of reboot for the series, featuring a new protagonist named Apollo Justice and only retaining seven characters from the original trilogy. Even mainstay characters like Maya Fey and Miles Edgeworth, who are major characters in all three games in the original trilogy, scarcely earn even a mention.

Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney inherits several elements from Rise from the Ashes, as a result of both of them being made specifically with the Nintendo DS in mind. These include two characters from Rise from the Ashes along with some of the forensic science gameplay. A more subtle similarity is that there are no episode selection image to be unlocked after each episode's completion. This is the only game in which this is the case, though fellow DS titles Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth and Gyakuten Kenji 2 are rather minimalist in their episode selection images, each depicting a major character on a generic background.


Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney is set seven years after the events of the previous game, at which point Phoenix Wright has been disbarred. Although several hints are given during the course of the game, it is not until the final case that the events surrounding his disbarment are revealed.


  1. Turnabout Trump: For his first trial, Apollo Justice (assisted by Kristoph Gavin) must defend the disbarred Phoenix Wright on the charge of murdering a drifter called Shadi Smith in a poker game.
  2. Turnabout Corner: After joining the Wright Anything Agency, Justice is soon put to work investigating three seemingly unconnected petty crimes that are soon revealed to be tied together by a murder. When Justice takes the defendant's case, he faces Klavier Gavin at the prosecutor's bench.
  3. Turnabout Serenade: After a murder at a Gavinners concert, Justice finds himself defending the Borginian pianist Machi Tobaye for the crime.
  4. Turnabout Succession (partly takes place seven years before Turnabout Trump): The case that caused Phoenix Wright's disbarment and another case involving a murdered artist must be solved to reveal the truth behind them both.

Main characters

  • Apollo Justice is the protagonist and has been described as having "a passionate heart burning red" and "chords of steel".
  • Phoenix Wright, now disbarred from law, has taken up a job at the Borscht Bowl Club as its (awful) piano player and undefeated poker player. He becomes Justice's on-again-off-again mentor after the events of Turnabout Trump.
  • Klavier Gavin is a prosecutor who faces off against Justice in the latter three episodes and Phoenix Wright in the flashback of his last trial in Turnabout Succession. He became a prosecutor at 17, and unlike previous prosecutors in the series, he is honest and friendly when first introduced. Klavier is also Kristoph Gavin's younger brother and the lead singer of the rock band, the Gavinners
  • Ema Skye returns as the detective in charge of the latter three cases in the game and is Apollo Justice's main contact in the police department. She is much moodier and less friendly than she was in Rise from the Ashes, disappointed that she was not assigned to the forensics department. However, the prospect of conducting a forensic investigation excites her just as it did in her younger days. She plays a similar role to Dick Gumshoe from the first three Ace Attorney games.
  • The unnamed judge who presides over all the cases in the game.

Characters by episode

Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney features the lowest number of returning characters in the Ace Attorney series to date, with only seven characters from previous games making a reappearance.

Turnabout Trump

Turnabout Corner

Turnabout Serenade

Turnabout Succession

New gameplay elements

This game features the bracelet, which has the ability to "zoom in on witnesses to gather information regarding them". This is denoted as the perceive function in the game. The bracelet is used in court to spot actions made by the witness that show nervousness. Apollo Justice shouts "Gotcha!" once the player spots such an action.


A demo was briefly downloadable from the Wii to the Nintendo DS using the Wii's Nintendo Channel or playable from a website. The demo covers a short section of Turnabout Trump (specifically Phoenix Wright's cross examination segment). When the player progresses beyond the content in the demo (after the player first successfully presents evidence), Apollo Justice strains his vocal cords from yelling and loses his voice. After this point the demo ends with Justice being assured that it was only a mock trial, and the player being told to buy the full game to solve the mystery.


2036 - Apollo Justice - Ace Attorney 52 20085

The Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney English title screen.

After release in Japan, Gyakuten Saiban 4 has been highly praised, with Famitsu giving it a 9/9/9/9 score (36/40), and selling around 250,000 copies during the first retail week, according to Media-Create. Six weeks after its release, Capcom announced that they had shipped 500,000 copies, accounting for 25% of the series' two million units worldwide.


  • Original Creator/Series Director:

Box art gallery

External links

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