Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy Localization Blog: Hello Again!

Aug 22, 2014 // Janet Hsu

Hi everyone! This is Janet Hsu, coming to you from Osaka, Japan! The days are getting hotter and hotter here in the northern hemisphere and Mother Nature has definitely cranked the humidity up to “You’re Drowning In It”, but fear not! I’m here to bring you some refreshingly chilled news.

In case you haven’t heard, “Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy” is coming this winter for the Nintendo 3DS. Now, some of you long-time fans may remember me as the Localization Director on “Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies” (AA:DD – which is out now on iOS , if you haven’t given it a play yet!), but did you know that I have worked on this series as Localization Creative Director since the second game, “Justice For All” (in addition to a number of other roles such as lead translator, editor, and project lead)? So yeah, you could say that working on this latest game, “Ace Attorney Trilogy” (AAT), has been a real trip down memory lane for me.

Which brings me to the reason for my return to Capcom Unity: over the next few months, I’ll be bringing you some info about AAT, such as how to play the game and character intros for all the newcomers to the series (of which I hope there will be many!), as well as some behind the scenes info, such as what has been updated for AAT, a smattering of localization trivia, and even a few of Mr. Shu “Father of Ace Attorney” Takumi’s original dev blogs from the Japanese release’s Game Boy Advance days!  

So, first things first! If you’re new to the series or are just joining us after playing “Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney” (Oh, you lucky Europeans!) and wanted to learn more about our dashing Sir Blue Knight, you’ve come to the right place! I hope you’ll enjoy your first look into the world of Ace Attorney today, and that you’ll stick around to see more! And if you’re a long-time fan, I hope you’ll help me spread the word about AAT because what better time to get your friends hooked on this amazing series than with a complete collection of the first three games in HD!

Speaking of HD, the most obvious update is to the graphics, of course. The graphics team behind the visual upgrade spent roughly half a year to redraw everything you see by hand, which is a pretty amazing feat! In addition, the artists made sure to pay extra attention to each character’s unique animations that are so critical to bringing out their visual charm, so rest assured that the characters will move as smoothly and outrageously as they did in the Nintendo DS version.

Aww, look at Franziska, all grown up and as ready to whip you into unconsciousness as ever.

Seeing as this is the Nintendo 3DS , we did indeed add full stereoscopic 3D support to this collection! Taking cues from AA:DD, the characters, backgrounds and text windows all sit in their own layers. I remember the first time I saw the effect and personally-speaking, the additional field of depth adds a level of immersion I didn’t think possible. If you enjoy playing games with the 3D on, I wholly recommend you give it a try in AAT as well!

Now, before this turns into an entry dedicated purely to the glorious visual upgrades, I’d better mention that there are also a ton of other improvements! We have re-mastered the sound effects and background music, and yes, we’ve even proof-read the text again! Rejoice, for the miracle did happen! Finally! …Not that that’s something I should be saying too loudly… *hangs head in shame*  

All joking aside, the translation has received a much needed touch-up job, including some re-translations that I hope will help the dialogue flow more naturally, and tweaks that should make some of the more difficult cross-examinations easier to solve using, dare I say… LOGIC *gasp!*


Because we all know how we REALLY play these games…

(Art by JohnSu )

So for those of you wondering what’s taking the Western release so long, I hope you will find the wait to be worth it!

As for the music and sound effects, as some people may have already noticed at E3 and Comic Con, the “Objections!” are louder and clearer, and even without the best headphones I think people will be pleasantly surprised by how rich the soundtrack feels. This is thanks, in part, to the fact that the music is uncompressed, so plug in your favorite headphones and enjoy the music as it was intended.

In addition, for those of you studying Japanese, AAT contains the full Japanese version of all three games. It’s a great way for students of Japanese to learn idioms, slang, legal terms, and natural-sounding Japanese in general. It also gives you the perfect excuse to practice vocalizing Japanese words as your favorite characters when you’re tired of making fun of your textbook’s dull, dry dialogues between Mary-san and Tanaka-kun.

…Not that I’m advocating such shenanigans! Nope, not me!

Join me next time as I present one of Mr. Takumi’s dev blogs from way back in 2001! All I can say for now is that the dev team sure experienced some strange things along the way as they were making the first game…

Until then!