Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy review

by on January 22, 2024
Release Date

January 25, 2024


With the upcoming release of the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy, we finally have all of the mainline Ace Attorney games on modern consoles. For a while it felt like Capcom were going to forget about the courtroom drama for us fans in the west, but we now live in an age where every single case can be played in its entirety wherever you play your video games. If you missed out on the DS and 3DS games in the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy you might be wondering what’s in store for you, and the answer is a whole lot of ridiculous characters and legal battles.

The Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy begins with the game that introduced our outlandish haired new protagonist into the spotlight. Just a rookie defence attorney when the game begins, Apollo ends up teaming with the now disgraced Phoenix Wright to help a whole load of innocent accused people go free. There’s an overarching plot that involves discovering how original protagonist Wright was stripped of his attorney’s badge, and more importantly how the legal system has become somewhat tarnished since the glory days of the series.

The whole trilogy is set in a period known as “The Dark Age of Law”, where what happens in the courtrooms is no longer respected by the world at large. Fake evidence and incorrect judgements are at an all time high, and navigating this isn’t easy for those at the Wright & Co Law Agency. Times are changing though, and with a little bit of help from Apollo, Phoenix and the gang the future will hopefully be a brighter place.

A screenshot of Apollo Justice Ace Attorney Trilogy

Although the collection of three games is called Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy, it’s only really the first game that focuses on Apollo as the main protagonist. In fact he doesn’t appear at all in the titles of the other two games, and more often than not you’ll be hanging with Phoenix or his next new rookie Athena as they serve up justice to the masses.

Now if you haven’t played an Ace Attorney game before (and admittedly this is a particularly odd place to start) you probably want to know what these games entail. Well nestled somewhere in the genre border of visual novel and adventure game, these legal adventures are split into two parts – investigating crime scenes and the courtroom action itself. When you’re out in the world you’ll be talking to witnesses and looking for evidence by examining various rooms with your sidekick of the day, then to progress the story you’ll probably need to show what you find to various characters in true adventure game fashion. It’s simple but effective, and ensures you’re ready to fight the prosecution when the time is right.

The real star of the Ace Attorney show though are the courtroom battles, where you’ll need to uncover the truth by questioning witnesses and pointing out any contradictions with your evidence. This can be as simple as showing the gun that was fired once to a passer-by who heard two gunshots or as complex as using a floor plan to figure out how someone else was the murderer in a locked room containing only two people. When you figure out exactly how a crime played out and are able to use your evidence to prove it you feel like a genius, and will be shouting “Objection” every step of the way.

A screenshot of Apollo Justice Ace Attorney Trilogy

Most of the Ace Attorney games have a little mechanic or two that makes them different, and the ones in the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy are no exception. In the first game Apollo is able to spot tells when people are lying, which for you means watching people in slow motion when they talk and finding what statement makes them scratch their head or gulp involuntarily. The second game introduces Athena and her gadget that can read emotions, and the third has all manner of magical and mystical gimmicks up its sleeve. The differences mean that each game in the trilogy has its own identity, and makes playing through them all in one bumper law themed few weeks much more palatable.

It needs mentioning that Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy is much more than a bundle of three games shoved together in a collection. Everything an Ace Attorney fan could want is contained in this package. The two extra DLC episodes, check. A gallery full of concept art and a jukebox full of every song from the game, check. The ability to look at every single individual character animation in a variety of settings, yes even that is there and available to access from the first time you boot up the game. It’s an absolute treasure trove of content, possibly the best I’ve ever come across in a collection like this.

More than all the little bits of art and music though, my favourite addition to the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy is “Story Mode”. This option in the menus allows you to make the game play itself at the push of a button, and when you’re stuck it’s a lifesaver. If you’re anything like me there are plenty of times where the logic of the game just won’t be clear, and in a courtroom setting especially the punishments might end with you needing to reload a save. What’s really clever about story mode though is how it slowly selects what needs doing next, because it means you can use it more as a hint than a walkthrough. Knowing that there’s one specific statement with a contradiction can be enough of a nudge to set you back on the right track, without making you feel like you aren’t really playing the game.

A screenshot of Apollo Justice Ace Attorney Trilogy

I have a lot of nice things to say about the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy, but that’s not to say it doesn’t have a few issues. Like all Ace Attorney games there are times that the logic doesn’t really make sense, or where there’s a really obvious contradiction that there’s no way to point out, which is always frustrating. Some cases feel a little poorly paced too, getting drawn out across multiple days when really they could’ve told their story more concisely.

As good as the games in this trilogy are, they also struggle to stand up to the other games in the series. The characters are just a little less memorable and charming, the prosecutors especially. In a series made famous in part thanks to the condescending antagonists like Miles Edgeworth and the Von Karma family, the legal eagles you face off against here just aren’t up to snuff. That’s not to say these three games aren’t great (and they do have some great cameos from some of your favourites) but in a series of absolute bangers this trilogy only manages to be great.

I’m so glad that the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy is now easily accessible for newer fans of the series, and the extra features and bonus content this collection contains is simply fantastic. Solving mysteries and helping innocent people is as engaging as ever, even if the games in this trilogy are a little less spectacular than the rest of the series. If you want to complete your courtroom drama collection then the Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy will be the easiest purchase you’ve ever made, but it might not wow you quite as much as Phoenix and Ryunosuke’s adventures.


Fighting in court is as engaging as ever
Loads of bonus content included in the collection
Each game has different new mechanics to keep things fresh
Story Mode means you'll never get stuck again


Still the weakest entries in the series
Has some pacing issues

Editor Rating
Our Score


In Short

Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney Trilogy brings the last three mainline Ace Attorney games to modern consoles, and they're just as good as ever.