|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Capcom||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Capcom||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Feb. 16, 2010||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Deduce works in a similar fashion; however, you'll be pointing out specific elements of a piece of evidence in order to form conclusions. Miles has a logic meter (a sort of health bar) located on the top screen, and any time your deductions, logical inferences, or evidence used to contradict testimony are incorrect, you'll lose a chunk of that health. Chances are most folks will never see the bar run out completely, but it's still a great, little device that will prevent players from simply spamming answers until they stumble upon the right one. You're going to have to use your noggin in this game, and you'll be rewarded greatly for doing so.
In terms of gameplay, Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth is likely the high point for the series. Some things, however, could still use improvement. Grammar and punctuation aren't usually major considerations in a video game, but when so much of the experience relies on written text, technical flaws tend to stand out. I often found myself having to re-read various lines because the punctuation used confused the meaning; other times the dialogue came across as if English was the character's second language. Additionally, there is still no option to skip past text you've already read, something fans of the series have long complained about. In spite of these criticisms, the story and dialogue are incredibly entertaining, as are the cast of characters that populate the adventure.
Visually, Ace Attorney Investigations plays it safe, but many scenes still manage to jump right off the screen. For the most part, the graphics are meant to be functional, and to that end, they play their respective role well. Segues between character interactions, investigation, and cutscenes are seamless and masterfully choreographed, though the color palette is beginning to show its age. My one main complaint with the visuals, though, is that certain effects, such as light strobes used for dramatic cadence, are a bit overplayed.
The sound effects and music are comprised of familiar staples of the series, which haven't yet worn out their welcome. A few new themes add color to the adventure, but the audio in Ace Attorney Investigations is mostly what fans have come to expect. Themes ramp up in intensity when you're closing in on an important turn of events, and the obligatory voice blurbs - "Objection," "Hold it," etc. - are used more sparingly this time around.
In many ways, Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth feels more like a retro experience than a step forward for the franchise. It incorporates a few mechanics that, though new to the series, are classics of the adventure genre. Interestingly enough, it's just the shot in the arm Ace Attorney needs to make it feel fresh again. Players are given more to do, and an organized approach to story and gameplay mean you won't be left floundering around trying to figure out what to do next. The level of challenge is balanced, and though you'll have to suspend disbelief when it comes to the game's characters and situations, cases still rely almost completely on logic. Best of all, this is one meaty package that will give fans a good bang for their buck. If you're looking for a great "who done it" on the go, Capcom's got the latest, greatest thing for you right here.
CCC Freelance Writer