At this point, Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies is starting to become pretty damn brilliant. Last week I had only played the first tutorial case. It was alright for what it was, and if nothing else it managed to get me hooked on the grand scheme of things in this game. And really, what else was it supposed to do?
This second case was a bit of a step down in some ways. I liked how the classic Japanese demons ("yokai") were integrated in the story, but beyond that it had some noticeable flaws. The defendant was not particularly likable (not unlikeable either, but still), some of the witnesses could get grating and I found it kind of difficult to visualize how exactly the murder occurred. Our understanding of the murder changes at the drop of a hat in this case, which makes it way too hard to keep track of what I'm supposed to think happened at any given time. Finally, this case had way too many glaring typos. I mean, I get that in such a text-heavy game as Phoenix Wright some typos are unavoidable, but there's no excuse for having so many obvious ones. "I think this is very importantly!", Apollo? Really?
Still, the second case wasn't bad per se, it just fell kind of short. Fortunately, the third case is making up for that and then some. For me, it's managing to hit all the high notes time after time. The set-up is interesting, you get to play as Athena, the characters are fun and have some shocking secrets even early on, one of my favorite Ace Attorney characters makes a return, and so on.
But you know what my favorite thing about this case is? It takes place in law school!
- Not this one, fortunately.
As an honest-to-god IRL law student, I've always been fascinated by the Ace Attorney games and how they portray the law and lawyers. Don't get me wrong, I don't hold a grudge or anything. In fact, I think it's brilliantly ridiculous. Still, there's a lot of little things I notice in these games that are very weird and/or interesting from my perspective. I've even thought of writing a Cblog on the subject, but just never got around to it. Maybe I'll do that after finishing this game.
At any rate, I hope you can imagine how fun it is for me to be strolling around law school Phoenix Wright style. The school where they offer only three programs: Lawyer Course, Prosecutor Course and Judge Course. The school where one of your classes deals exclusively with the angle of your pointer finger as you accuse someone of being the murderer. And another about your air of confidence when you present evidence (that you totally nicked from the crime scene but don't tell the prosecutor that until the trial). Because who needs to learn about how the law actually works, right? And come now, who honestly cares about commercial law, administrative law, constitutional law and what have you? Nah, murders and the accompanying pointer finger is where it's at. Priorities firmly in place.
If the rest of the game is going to be anything like this, I'm in for fun times indeed.
Oh, also. Prosecutor Blackquill is great too. Even though it's a tradition for these games to have great prosecutors (please don't ask me to pick a favorite), he still managed to surprise me. At first I thought he wasn't all that, being kinda quiet until making a sword metaphor or two, but he has definitely grown on me.
It feels like it's been a decade since we've seen the rise of the crowdfunded game. I'm always surprised when I remind myself that crowdfunding has been a thing long before the first crowdfunded video game, but nowadays a crowdfunded game seems like a dime a dozen.
Of course such a phrase is an incredible disservice to some of the great games that have come out thanks to websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Games like FTL, Shovel Knight, and even Undertale are around thanks to crowdfunding; thanks to people gathering around and literally putting their money where their mouth is, a game they want gets funded and inevitably the greater landscape of gaming benefits from it. Most of the time the landscape gets to benefit from it anyways.
Don't worry though, this month's bloggers wanted prompt isn't an exploratory thesis on the effects of crowdfunding on video game development. We just want you to talk about your favorite games, as long as they were crowdfunded. This topic can be simultaneously broad and narrow, because you can talk about whatever game you want, however you want, as long as it was crowdfunded.
For me, FTL is the original crowdfunded game, and it was great. It was somehow minimalist and incredibly detailed at the same time, and it was all done because a man wanted to do it, but needed the money, and thousands of other people wanted to see where his idea would go. Shovel Knight to me feels like this natural evolution of the classic 8-bit gaming of yore without also throwing myself back to a time when gaming was honestly comparatively archaic. And everyone's talked to death about Undertale, so we all know where I'd go with that.
To participate in this month's bloggers wanted, just start a blog! Oh, and title it "Crowdfunded: [your blog title here]." I bet this month is going to be pretty diverse, since it's basically writing about your favorite crowdfunded game. So I hope to hear about some good games revisited or amazing games no one has heard about.
Remember: Persona 5 was not crowdfunded, but excuse me as I plow through it.
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