Capcom’s resident attorney, Phoenix Wright, has made a big name for himself and is probably the most famous defense attorney in the video game world. He’s solved many cases and proved the many to be innocent.
A lot of his cases were memorable, but most were just crescendo-ing to the final case of each game and those were the big highlights that everyone remembers. That doesn’t mean the other cases weren’t great. In this Fanatical Five, we’ll be counting down the Top 5 Ace Attorney Cases That Are Not The Final Case.
5. Turnabout Big Top – Case 3, Phoenix Wright: Justice For All
“Phoenix takes the case of famous magician Max Galactica in the murder of his boss, circus ringmaster Russel Berry. Can magicians really fly?”
A trip to the circus doesn’t turn out to be whimsical for Phoenix, Maya, and Pearl. An accident from 6 months ago eventually lead to another accident at the cost of the life of the most important person at the circus. With a murdered Ringmaster, crazy circus folk that stay in character that you have to incriminate, animals, and possible magic afoot, this Big Top case is very much over the top.
4. Reunion and Turnabout – Case 2, Phoenix Wright: Justice For All
“Chronologically takes place before case one. Phoenix is reunited with Maya, only to have to defend her in another murder. And this time, it’s in her own home village. Phoenix takes on another von Karma, Franziska, and it’s going to be painful.”
All you really knew about the Fey family was Mia, Maya, and that they had special powers in the form of being Spirit Mediums. But Case 2 of the second game gave more back story to their family lineage and the tradition of Kurain village.
This case was the debut of Psyche-Locks as well as a couple of important recurring characters. Franziska von Karma, daughter of Manfred von Karma, a child prodigy, and your new Prosecutor rival. She won’t hesitate to assert her authority on foolish fools with her whip. And then there’s Pearl Fey, a young girl who has the potential to be the future leader of Kurain and she would have been had her mother’s murderous plot came to fruition.
3. Turnabout Samurai – Case 3, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney
“When a popular action show villain is murdered at the production studio, the show’s star Will Powers becomes the prime suspect. With Maya’s help, Phoenix uncovers a long history of cover-ups and extortion.”
Stories of the seedy world of being a celebrity is the theme of this case. Does stuff really happen behind the scenes that the public never knows about? Wright & Co. Law Offices find out in this case.
Beloved superhero, The Steel Samurai, was framed for murder of one of his costars. This case will take you on a studio tour to find evidence to prove his innocence. And the Steel Samurai franchise plays a big part in future cases so the launch of this case was pivotal in establishing the famed Steel Samurai lore.
You also see the more righteous side of Edgeworth as he shows he doesn’t have to be on the correct side of the courtroom to get the truth out.
2. Turnabout Beginnings – Case 4, Phoenix Wright: Trials and Tribulations
“Another flashback case–this time, it’s Mia’s very first case, and it’s against none other than rookie prosecutor Miles Edgeworth. Prelude to case 5.”
There are 2 times you get to play as Phoenix’s mentor, Mia Fey. While the first time shows how she and Phoenix met, the second time is where everything begins.
Mia, her mentor Diego Armando, Edgeworth, and Mia’s main antagonist Dahlia Hawthorne are all established in Mia’s first case. This is the moment all the cases Phoenix has gone through began as Mia’s determination gets instilled during the horrific events of her first trial.
1. The First Turnabout – Case 1, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney
“Phoenix takes his first case as a criminal defense lawyer to defend his long time friend, Larry Butz, in the murder of Cindy Stone.”
Phoenix’s first case is easily the most memorable. It’s the start of all these crazy cases and it shows you how awesome it is to be a defense attorney.
Silly character gimmicks and quirks, the puns, the Judge’s charm, all of these were highlighted in the very first case. And speaking of firsts, do you remember the first time you questioned your friend Larry Butz? Do you remember the first time you presented the correct evidence? Do you remember your first prosecutor opponent, Winston Payne? Do you remember your first “Objection!”? Do you remember your first victory? Your journey as an ace attorney began here.
While none of the Apollo Justice cases were listed, I really did enjoy that game. Initially when coming up with this list, none of his cases came to mind. But I will highly recommend playing his cases especially since he and other characters from that game will be making appearances in Ace Attorney 5: Dual Destinies.
(all images and quotes from Court Records)