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Kazuma Asogi
I am determined to bring about change in our legal system.

Kazuma Asogi was a student at Imperial Yumei University studying law, while also serving as a defense attorney. Due to his exemplary academic achievements, he was also chosen to study abroad in the British Empire towards the end of Japan's Meiji era. After his best friend Ryunosuke Naruhodo was put on trial for the murder of John H. Wilson and subsequently acquitted, Kazuma requested that he accompany him to Britain.

Early life[]

"Sins" of the father[]

Main article: The Professor Killings
Genshin and Kazuma

As a child with his father, Genshin.

Kazuma Asogi was born as the only son of Genshin Asogi and hailed from a well-known martial arts family. When he was eight years old, his father participated in an exchange student program and departed for the Great British Empire.

Over the course of his visit, Genshin would, however, be arrested for a series of murders known as the Professor Killings. Mael Stronghart approached him with a proposal: should he consent to being framed as the Professor, he would be allowed to return home to his son Kazuma and the rest of his family; Genshin agreed, and years later Stronghart would describe Kazuma as Genshin's "only weakness."

Genshin was allowed to compose his will, of which he wrote three pages. However, one page contained hidden instructions to find the evidence that would resolve the Professor Killings; as such, Kazuma would not receive the last page of his father's will at the time.

But Genshin was betrayed and murdered by Seishiro Jigoku after Enoch Drebber stumbled upon his still-living body. Back in Japan, Kazuma's mother would soon die due to an anxiety related illness. Kazuma was then taken in by Yujin Mikotoba, who told him his father died of an illness, and raised alongside his daughter Susato.

One day though, he received a hateful letter from a relative of one of the victims of the Professor Killings, something that Yujin was not privy to until years later. Kazuma asked Jigoku about the letter and subsequently pieced together the fact that his father had been executed for his alleged crimes as the Professor. Kazuma's belief in his father's innocence, however, ultimately motivated Kazuma to become a defense attorney.

Meeting Naruhodo[]

Kazuma met Ryunosuke Naruhodo during Imperial Yumei University's speech competition. Naruhodo gave a speech that, while shallow, wound up winning the audience over with ferocity and passion. That speech kindled a spirit of rivalry in Kazuma. Kazuma's persuasive speech about how the Japanese social system needed to change went perfectly until the end when he meant to say "So arise, ladies and gentlemen, and applaud our forefathers' plight and the fight for filial piety". Kazuma could not speak that final tongue twister, failing for five minutes until he collapsed to his knees on the stage and the audience booed him off.

Humiliated, he caught up with Naruhodo later and asked how he overcame tongue twisters. Naruhodo replied that it was his hobby and taught Kazuma one, which Kazuma heard as "red headband, lead headband, dead headband". The shame of the failed speech and the equal desire to overcome his weakness prompted Kazuma to practice that particular phrase until his tongue bled. He began wearing a red headband as a symbol of the hardship he had overcome. Kazuma and Naruhodo quickly bonded afterwards.

At some point in the subsequent months, Kazuma applied to a student exchange program to travel to the United Kingdom, seeing it as his chance to finally get answers concerning his father's supposed crimes. To his surprise, however, Minister of Justice Seishiro Jigoku revealed that the program was just a front and Kazuma's real mission would be to assassinate Tobias Gregson, a detective involved in the Professor case. Kazuma agreed to this but did not actually intend to go through with it, only using it as an opportunity to accost Gregson and learn from him the truth about his father.

Naruhodo's trial[]

Main article: The Adventure of the Great Departure

Some time later, Kazuma stood by Naruhodo's side when the latter was put on trial after being accused of murdering visiting forensic professor John H. Wilson. After the trial, Kazuma recounted the speech competition, which he stated occurred "last summer". He learned that he had remembered the tongue twister incorrectly. It was actually "Red bread pan, lead bread pan, dead bread man". Kazuma was unable to say this new tongue twister and had a breakdown out of sheer frustration in the defendants' antechamber.

Incident aboard the SS Burya[]

Main article: The Adventure of the Unbreakable Speckled Band

Though the exchange program only provided tickets to Kazuma and Susato, Kazuma smuggled Naruhodo aboard the SS Burya as a stowaway. Kazuma hid Naruhodo in his cabin's closet and they shared the meals meant for Kazuma. This left both of them hungry. Kazuma told Naruhodo that he had a mission and that he wanted his friend to see it through with him, but did not divulge any details about what his mission actually was.

There was a power outage on the ship and Naruhodo took the opportunity to steal a single steak from the kitchen. Herlock Sholmes spied Naruhodo fleeing back to Kazuma's cabin. When the theft was discovered, Sholmes asked Kazuma for permission to search his room. Kazuma could not dissuade Sholmes, who heard Naruhodo sneeze. Sholmes searched the closet where Naruhodo had been hiding first, but discovers no one inside. However he did find the bones from three steaks. When the sailor Bif Strogenov accused Kazuma of the steak theft, Sholmes explained that Kazuma couldn't be the thief because his stomach would not be growling from hunger if he had eaten the steaks. Satisfied of Kazuma's innocence, Strogenov left to pursue the thief. Sholmes then warned Kazuma to hide the "animal" under his bed better. After Sholmes left, Naruhodo confessed his theft of the one steak to Kazuma and explained how he moved from the closet to the bed when everyone was distracted. Kazuma then realized that Sholmes had stolen the other steaks and had dumped the bones of the steak in his closet.

One night, Kazuma encountered a ballerina named Nikolina Pavlova and learned that she was trying to escape from Russia. Realizing that she was smuggled onto the ship, Kazuma decided to let her meet Naruhodo, who was sleeping in the closet. But when he turned to his right, Pavlova panicked because she thought he was looking at the calling bell nearby and was going to call detective Satoru Hosonaga. When her cat began to circle around him, she suddenly pushed him and accidentally knocked him out against his bed post. Panicked by what had happened, Pavlova proceeded to cover up the incident with the help of Strogenov, framing Naruhodo for it by using blue ink to make it look as if Kazuma had written "wardrobe" in Russian. Upon being made aware of the crime, and knowing of Kazuma's connection to the assassination program from eavesdropping on government correspondence, Sholmes took the opportunity to fabricate the incident as a "death" and hid the fact that Kazuma had survived his assault from Naruhodo and Susato. After Naruhodo and Susato realized that Pavlova was the one who had caused Kazuma's "death" and Naruhodo himself was cleared of suspicion for the crime, Naruhodo decided to continue his friend's dream of becoming a worthy defense attorney so that he could change Japan's justice system for the better. Susato also gave Naruhodo Kazuma's sword, Karuma, and Naruhodo wrapped his friend's hairband around it.

Time in Britain[]

Main article: The Great Ace Attorney 2: Resolve

Though Kazuma had survived the events on the steamship, the ordeal rendered him amnesiac, with his only clue to his past being an intense desire to reach England. He escaped from the steamship, and gradually made his way to his destination by acting as a crew member aboard cargo ships. He eventually reached England, but because he had no identity and no memory, he was taken to Scotland Yard, where he met Mael Stronghart for the first time. Using his remaining knowledge of law, Kazuma impressed Stronghart enough to instate him as the disciple of Barok van Zieks. However, Stronghart ordered that he must wear a mask and cloak at all times, causing him to adopt the identity of the "Masked Apprentice".

"Revived"[]

Main article: The Return of the Great Departed Soul
Kazuma Mask HQ

Removing his mask.

Under the guise of the "Masked Apprentice," Kazuma assisted van Zieks in his prosecution against Albert Harebrayne. During the course of the investigation, Naruhodo and Susato deduced that the Apprentice was in fact their friend, though they were in no position to confirm or deny the fact. After the trial concluded, Kazuma regained his memories upon seeing a wax sculpture of his father Genshin. Naruhodo, grateful to see he was alive, returned Karuma to him, which Kazuma proceeded to use to slice his father's wax figure in half. He thanked Naruhodo for taking care of Karuma and Susato for taking care of Naruhodo, but declaring that this was not the time to talk more, Kazuma departed from the courtroom.

Reborn[]

Main articles: Twisted Karma and His Last Bow & The Resolve of Ryunosuke Naruhodo

In order to cover up his past to ensure his promotion to Attorney General, Mael Stronghart decided to have Tobias Gregson killed. To accomplish this, Stronghart decided to give Gregson a "Reaper" mission for the date of October thirty-first aboard the S.S. Grouse as it headed for Dunkirk, France, Kazuma was sent with him as the assassin. The ostensible purpose of this mission was to assassinate Seishiro Jigoku, as he had technically been prosecuted by Van Zieks for smashing the witness stand at the Professor's trial ten years ago, but Stronghart's true intent was for Kazuma to kill Gregson. However, when Kazuma confronted Gregson, he instead insisted that the inspector explain what really happened at Genshin's trial. Gregson revealed that forged evidence had been used to convict Genshin, though he refused to say anything more and continued to insist Genshin was guilty. Enraged by this, Kazuma drew his sword and swung it at Gregson, but he hit his trunk instead and chipped Karuma. Shaken at his own actions, Kazuma decided to leave it at that, disembarking at Dunkirk harbor and signing the guestbook at the inn to stay for the night. Although Gregson tried to kill Jigoku all by himself, the judge managed to shoot Gregson dead. Then he froze Gregson's body to throw off the time of death and tried to pin the crime on Daley Vigil by placing the body in the room he had rented on Fresno Street, but Barok van Zieks stumbled upon the inspector's corpse and took the fall instead.

Kazuma Asogi would later be the one to prosecute his mentor facing off against his friend, Naruhodo, in the trial. He saw this as an opportunity to get his revenge against Barok van Zieks for his father's conviction, since van Zieks had been the prosecutor for that trial. His case was that van Zieks was the head of the Reaper of the Bailey conspiracy, an organization originally thought to be a curse where Gregson and Asa Shinn, the assassin who killed John Wilson, would carry out the deaths of each of the defendants that escaped van Zieks's trials. Their headquarters: an abandoned apartment just outside of London. The most recent Reaper mission was to kill Seishiro Jigoku, but since Gregson failed at this mission, Kazuma believed van Zieks had shot Gregson as retribution when he returned to Fresno Street. Originally, Kazuma's theory was that Gregson was merely investigating van Zieks, who shot him to silence the investigation. But Naruhodo eventually proved that Gregson's killer was Jigoku himself so he could complete Kazuma's mission.

Despite this, Kazuma still wanted to convict van Zieks of being the head Reaper. He requested that van Zieks give testimony about it, but van Zieks denied any reason to plot the assassin exchange. But then Naruhodo remembered Klint's autopsy report, causing Kazuma to reveal what had happened with Kazuma and Gregson before he left for Dunkirk. He concluded that since Barok van Zieks was the prosecutor for his father's trial, only he could've had detective Gregson and Dr. Wilson forge that autopsy, then had them killed to keep them from talking. But to his surprise, Kazuma found out that Mael Stronghart was the original prosecutor in charge -- it was only at the last minute that Stronghart allowed van Zieks to take over the trial, due to van Zieks's insistence on avenging his brother Klint. Judge Stronghart denied forgery being involved in any way in Genshin's trial, stating that there was no way to prove that what Gregson told Kazuma was true because Gregson was dead now. After denying Yujin Mikotoba's testimony, Stronghart tells Kazuma to surrender himself and that his "little play at revenge" is over. This made Kazuma slam his fists on the stand and scream in despair.

However, Herlock Sholmes soon appeared and convinced the gallery that the trial must continue, giving Kazuma one more chance. It was revealed in the following testimonies that Genshin was targeted by Gregson's men in order to steal his ring and frame him for the crime; Barok had believed he was the target at the time. Kazuma still struggled to believe that Barok had nothing to do with framing Genshin, until Naruhodo snapped him out of it: he told Kazuma that if Kazuma held onto his hatred of Barok van Zieks, he would never be able to find the truth. Seemingly enlightened, Kazuma decided to let go of the past and help his friend. It was eventually discovered that the true identity of the Professor was that of Barok's brother himself, Klint van Zieks, and that Klint's death -- formerly believed to be the last attack of the Professor -- was actually during a duel between Genshin and Klint, since Genshin wanted his friend Klint to die with honor. It was subsequently revealed that Stronghart was also responsible for the killings of the Reaper and the assassination program, and had been blackmailing Klint to continue his killings as the Professor.

Stronghart was almost able to get away with his crimes, as no proof existed that he acted directly, and due to the nature of the secret trial, everything was to remain classified. Kazuma almost lost his last change at revenge until Sholmes appeared through hologram, revealing that Queen Victoria had been watching the whole trial and had stripped Stronghart of his powers. At last, Kazuma was able to achieve the justice he had looked for for so long.

After the trial, Kazuma declared he would never forgive Barok, but admitted he was a man who sought justice. When Barok declared he would have to leave the country when word of his brother got out, Kazuma chastized him, claiming that now that the Reaper had gone, his work had only just begun. Barok begrudgingly accepted this. Later that evening at the prosecutor's office, Susato approched Kazuma, asking if it would be okay for her to return home with Naruhodo instead of staying as Kazuma's judicial assistant. Kazuma accepted, asking her to watch over his friend.

Farewell to friends[]

Ending

Kazuma and Naruhodo say their goodbyes.

As the day came when Naruhodo was to leave, Kazuma approached him and thanked him for everything. He revealed that during his confrontation with Gregson he had felt a murderous rage, and understood that there was still a darkness within him that he had yet to defeat. He also told his friend he would be studying under Barok as a prosecutor in order to be able to conquer the darkness within others as well. Believing he was not yet deserving to hold the sword, he entrusted Karuma to Naruhodo until the day he could overcome his faults. Declaring the two would meet again in court one day, Kazuma watched as Naruhodo and Susato departed for their home country.

Personality[]

Kazuma Asougi mugshot

Mugshot.

Kazuma Asogi
In other words, our feeble government is scared of upsetting England’s policy makers. And you’re a convenient and expendable scapegoat to blame for this crime.

Kazuma is introduced as a composed yet hot-blooded and outspoken youth with a strong sense of justice. He's well-known around his university for his accomplishments in both academics and martial arts, and despite his young age, he was chosen to participate in an exchange program to travel to the Great British Empire and earn the qualifications to become a defense attorney.

He possesses a sharp tongue, and is quick to challenge or defy authority figures; a point of contention from local bailiffs and later, Mael Stronghart. This extends to a strong hatred for corrupt authority as well, as Kazuma displays contempt not only for the Japanese government attempting to use Naruhodo as a scapegoat, but for the British government having done the same thing to his father Genshin.

He can overdo things to a fault, as displayed by how he practiced the tongue twisters he struggled with until his tongue bled. Kazuma is also willing to go to great lengths in order to help his friends, even if it means risking his career and aspirations; and despite his acerbic nature, he is deeply respectful to those he cares about, and never failing to encourage them. It is because of these traits that Kazuma is set up to be an ideal, one that his best friend Ryunosuke Naruhodo would think of in times of need.

Masked Disciple Mugshot

As the "Masked Apprentice".

Asougi Mugshot 2

As a prosecutor.

Following his return, however, this positive characterization in the first game is deconstructed. Initially "good" traits are now taken to harmful extremes, with the most glaring being his determination. Even without memory, he was so determined that he traveled to the Great British Empire through working on steamships while relying on his knowledge of the English language, along with his skill in lawyering. As Naruhodo later discovers, this is all done in the name of avenging his father, displaying a strong dedication to filial piety.

However, said determination and loyalty leads him to go to terrifying lengths, which can harm both others and himself. Such is shown by how Jigoku used this determination against him, as his condition to participate in the exchange program was to murder Tobias Gregson; and, later on, how he forces Daley Vigil to recall a traumatic memory in order to find the truth. (He does apologize for this, however.) His anger and determination towards van Zieks for the apparent use of forged evidence also leads Kazuma to be set on convicting him of Gregson's murder along with the Professor Killings.

Kazuma is also noted to be very closed-off about his problems and past, which becomes more apparent after the regaining of his memories. This is displayed by his closed-off body language in his sprites, along with his eventual breakdown: trying and failing to keep himself composed. That aspect of his has also been a long-running one, as Naruhodo notes that he has brief moments where he has a dark expression regarding his mission, yet says nothing; furthermore, Yujin Mikotoba states that he never knew that Kazuma had known about the Professor Killings and his father's involvement, which ultimately motivated him to travel to Britain.

However, Kazuma still retains his strong sense of justice, along with his love for his friends. He is ultimately able to see past his anger thanks to Naruhodo's words, and eventually assists in exposing the truth behind the Professor Killings. He also displays strong consideration towards his friends: seeing Susato's hope of continuing to be a judicial assistant at Naruhodo's side, Kazuma encourages Susato to accompany Naruhodo back to Japan in order to aid him in his work, giving up the opportunity of having his adopted sister by his side for his own trials as a prosecutor.

Kazuma is noted to struggle with tongue twisters, and although not stated to be his least favorite food, he appears to have a strong dislike for chicken to the point where he ate none of it when it was served for dinner. In terms of hobbies, he is stated to practice archery with Naruhodo alongside other martial arts, speech and debate. As his conversations in the Prosecutor's office show, he is implied to have an interest in arts and crafts.

Name[]

  • Kazuma Asōgi (亜双義 一真):
    • His surname "Asōgi" (亜双義) is homonymous with the term '阿僧祇' (あそうぎ) meaning 1056 or one hundred septendecillion. However, '阿僧祇' can also refer to the term asaṃkhyeya from Buddhism. Asaṃkhyeya refers to the Hindu/Buddhist name for the number 10140 as described in the Avatamsaka Sutra. In religious translations, this term means 'incalculable'. In Sanskrit, asaṃkhyeya can also mean 'innumerable' or 'infinite' and is a title of Hindu deities Vishnu and Shiva. In the Sanskrit hymn Vishnu Sahasranama, "asankyeyo-aprameyaatmaa" also means "one with infinite forms."
    • The sounds "sōgi" (そうぎ) are also homonymous with the term '葬儀', meaning "funeral service", which may reference both Kazuma and Genshin Asogi's roles in death; with Kazuma as an assassin in pursuit of revenge, and Genshin as a supposed murderer in pursuit of justice, with both men ultimately "dying" for their goals and "returning" from the dead.
    • His given name "Kazuma" (一真) is comprised of "ichi" (一) meaning "one", and "shin" (真) meaning "truth". This is in contrast to his father Genshin, whose name contains the kanji '玄真', with '玄' containing connotations of being mysterious or occult.

Unofficial[]

  • Brazilian Portuguese - Kouma Jushinsa (寿審査 好摩): [4]
    1. "Kouma" is a common Japanese name. The kanji used are from a train station of the same name in Japan, which means "o bom polido" (the good polish).
    2. "Jushinsa" is a Japanese term translated as "longevidade no julgamento" (longevity in judgment).
  • His full name resembles the phrase "com uma justiça" (with a fairness).
  • Russian - Isin Asogi (unofficial translation by FF):
    • His given name "Isin" is likely a pun on "Istina" (истина, the Russian word for "truth"), which is similar to his Japanese name.

Development[]

His clothes were designed with more of both western and eastern influences than Ryunosuke Naruhodo's were. His headband is animated to flutter in the wind even though he is mostly seen indoors. This animation was only doable in 3D and was something that art director Kazuya Nuri really wanted.[5]

References[]

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