[Honey's Crush Wednesday] 5 Phoenix Wright Highlights - Ace Attorney Series

Objection! Hold it! Take that!


  • Develop: Capcom
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Genre: adventure, visual novel
  • Publish Date: October 12, 2001

Ace Attorney Preview

In the Ace Attorney series, you play the role of a rookie defense lawyer - Phoenix Wright who has been embroiled in some complicated cases. As a newbie, you direct the development of this character, going through cases after cases in order to prove your client innocent. Numerous experienced prosecutors stand in your way however and not every case is as easy as it seems. Behind every twist and turn lies the truth, and it is up to you to bring it to light. Now, get going and find the evidence to get that Not Guilty verdict. Your adventure in the courtroom starts now!

Character Info (spoilers below)

Phoenix Wright is a newbie lawyer employed at the Fey & Co. Law Offices. At the start, he is clumsy, lacklustre and disorganised. As Phoenix Wright slowly learnt the ropes, he becomes a one-of-a-kind lawyer. Relying on his adaptability and flukes, Phoenix Wright has managed to bluff his way through many nerve-wracking issues of fact, dodging numerous bullets in the process. His affinity for luck, iron-will for saving his client and tactics have earnt him the title of the Comeback King and the titular character of the Ace Attorney series.

Phoenix Wright Highlights

1. Phoenix Wright is unorthodox

Phoenix Wright can be best described as being unconventional in his methods. Usually, he relies on his trademark bluffs to stall for time while he racked his brains to reverse his situation. Phoenix Wright will use just about anything that he can to salvage any tension and use it to his favour. In the signature trial Turnabout Goodbyes, he even demanded the testimony of a parrot, leaving the entire courtroom confounded and in disbelief.

Perhaps his best and unique ability would be his skill to fast talk out of any situation no matter how ridiculous and crazy it may sound. However, due to this, Phoenix Wright was able to bring new facts to light. Facts that were never once considered before and facts which happened to be the hidden truth to the whole case. Such an example would be the bullet found in Von Karma's shoulder in the same case. This would have gone neglected had it not be for Phoenix Wright who was as usual at that point in time, desperate.

When he was introduced once more in Apollo Justice, after his disbarment from the court, Phoenix Wright’s reputation was affirmed by the judge once more with him stating if the court would be able to witness his trademark bluffs once more. The character representation in a spin-off collaboration game, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 also paints Phoenix as an unorthodox fighter. His fight style is that of sneezing, throwing evidence and tripping up. After he gathers evidence and enters into his signature Turnabout Mode, that is when Phoenix Wright’s full potential as a dominant force appears. Just like in the game, Phoenix Wright takes a while to build up but once he has a solid foundation, he becomes an unstoppable force.

2. Phoenix Wright is persistent to the very end

Phoenix Wright is indeed a faithful and persistent loyal. One of the mottos that his mentor, Mia Fey had passed down onto him was that a lawyer should never cry until the whole case was over. This was one motto that he kept true to his principles and beliefs as an attorney. Every case that he has fought so far was won simply due to the fact that he trusts in his client's inherent innocence. Despite running into several obstacles on the way, Phoenix Wright is able to win the trial with his bluffs and trust in the client.

His first case involving his friend Larry Butz proved this indomitable trust. Despite having all the evidence against him and Larry's own incompetence in the cross-examination stage to defend himself, Phoenix Wright was able to secure a Not Guilty verdict for his friend. In his own words, Larry is known to be a lot of things but not a murderer. This undying trust in his client allows Phoenix Wright to work without hesitation bringing about his famous reversals in a trial. Truly, a lawyer should never lose faith in his clients for they would then lose the very reason for taking up the case.

3. Phoenix Wright is no stranger when it comes to luck

From surviving a 40-foot drop, a poison attack, hit by a speeding vehicle, and constant physical abuse in court, Phoenix Wright can be said to be considerably lucky. Even when it comes to gathering evidence, Phoenix Wright will always find the ultimate evidence to turn his case around at the eleventh hour. Even in his youth, he was put on trial for a case of murder. The evidence, of course, were all against him. Even then, Phoenix Wright happened to have a skilled attorney by his side to defend him.

Indeed, Phoenix Wright is a symbol of luck in the game. Some of his cases relied more on the fortuitous chain of events rather than of his skill. If you think about it, it must have taken a massive amount of luck for the level of bluffs that he pulls in court anyway. Many of the game characters have even considered him to be very lucky. After all, Phoenix Wright is the guy that got hit by a speeding vehicle, launched into the air, hit head first into a telephone pole, the force breaking the bumper off the speeding car, and still managed to walk away with a slight sprain. The flukes in the courtroom may not just be his keen intellect but rather to his good fortune.

4. Phoenix Wright’s power to read other people when they are lying

Phoenix Wright was gifted a Magatama by his assistant Maya Fey. The Magatama is a sacred relic that is well-known amongst the Fey clan. It wasn't until Pearl Fey charged it with spiritual energy, that the true powers of the Magatama can be seen. Essentially, the Magatama allows Phoenix Wright to see into the hearts of others. Manifesting in the form of 'Psyche Locks' these locks represent an individual's will to withhold information from Phoenix Wright.

As a lawyer, this proved to be useful to Phoenix Wright for detecting liars. However, it will serve no other purpose if the holder of the Magatama does not know how to act upon seeing the Psyche-Locks. The Magatama, combined with Phoenix Wright's intellect, allows him to sieve through lies from the truth, eventually arriving at the truth. This powerful ability allows Phoenix Wright to be quite a discerning lawyer, turning numerous cases against him in his favour.

Of course, being a human lie detector is impossible but with the Magatama, Phoenix Wright draws close. This makes the job of a cross-examiner so much easier. To know when someone is lying no matter how convincing it may be is a valuable skill in the courtroom. Some may even argue that it is only the Magatama that allows Phoenix Wright to be a formidable lawyer. However, the Magatama is useless in the hands of an unskilled cross-examiner. In Phoenix Wright's hands, however, it truly makes him worthy of the title, the Ace Attorney.

5. Phoenix Wright is a good bluffer

Zak Gramarye, one of Phoenix Wright's clients once said that cards can be used as a tool to determine whether a man was trustworthy or not. When he invited Phoenix Wright in for a game of cards, he saw Phoenix Wright's determination and will in him, and decided to hire him as his counsel. Bluffing, when broken down to its root definition, is practically lying. However, the act of lying can also be a good thing. The trait that Zak saw in Phoenix Wright was in fact, his skill is manipulating the facts to elicit the truth, sealing the deal for Phoenix Wright.

Indeed, Phoenix Wright is a skilled bluffer, displaying a mirage of confidence while the analytical Phoenix Wright worked close behind in order to uncover the truth. By proposing absurd theories, he slowly eliminates the impossible until only the truth remains. The truth, after all, can be absolutely ridiculous at times as proven by the Ace Attorney franchise. In fact, the whole truth was shocking even to those at the prosecutor's bench being nowhere near to what they have proposed originally from the start. In such a scenario, the bluffing tactics of Phoenix Wright were what was needed to shed some light on the matter.


Final Thoughts

And that's all we got for the Ace Attorney. Are you a fan of the series? Did you play all of the games before the anime even aired? Is Phoenix Wright your favourite character in the entire series. The Ace Attorney series may have just inspired a few of its audience to pursue a career in law. Are you one of them? What is your favourite aspect of the game? Perhaps you may even have another similar game that features courtroom drama? Let us know in the comment below and we will see you next time!

Araragi

Writer

Author: Araragi

Writing from a little island known as Singapore. It is through my articles that I want to show that the world of anime reaches out beyond the boundaries of Japan. From different age groups to individuals coming from different walks of life, everyone and anyone can be a lover of anime. To quote from Kingdom Hearts, 'There are many worlds out there, but they share the same sky.'

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