Professor Layton Vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney
Crossovers have become huge moneymakers in pop culture, from movies and television to video games and comics; people have always fantasized about different team ups or battles among iconic characters. Capcom is no stranger to this, with hit games like Marvel vs. Capcom, Capcom vs. SNK and even Project X Zone. The publisher's newest crossover sees it teaming with developer Level 5 in a new can't miss 3DS adventure.
Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney sees both heroes work side by side. Professor Layton and Phoenix Wright (along with their sidekicks Luke Triton and Maya Fey, respectively) enter the mysterious world of Labyrinthia, which is similar to medieval times. They're both unaware of how they arrived there, and need each other's help to escape. Before they do that, however, they must solve a mystery involving a young woman named Espella Cantabella.
The game divides itself into alternating parts. You explore the world with Layton, Wright and company solving puzzles and looking for clues. Then you transition to the courtroom listening to testimony and searching for contradictions. The gameplay will be familiar to fans of each franchise. The trials and puzzles will test your logic and knowledge, while the court cases have a new element not seen before in Phoenix Wright games, with multiple witnesses testifying at one time.
Graphically the game looks incredible, with beautifully rendered cut scenes at important points in the story; it looks like you are watching an anime. The characters are very well detailed and show their emotions with exaggerated quirks. You can also expect great music that brings you further into the plot.
Fans of both series will see and hear small nods to each, particularly in the dialogue. These small Easter eggs are always great fan service.
Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney takes you into the mythical world of Labyrinthia. While Labyrinthia is a great setting with a captivating story to uncover, it is a bit disappointing that you don't get to see more characters from each franchise. Layton never matches wits with Miles Edgeworth, nor does Wright get to work with Scotland Yard on a case.
Meanwhile, the court cases (the Phoenix Wright parts) are more fun than exploring and puzzle solving (the Professor Layton parts). This new world has a lot of wacky and memorable characters whose personalities shine in the courtroom, though if you already played many Professor Layton games, puzzles feel very familiar. This makes you want to rush through the Layton segments.
Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney is a great pairing that makes for an addictive game. Once you start, you will be immediately drawn into the story and won't be able to put the 3DS down. Fans of both series will be very satisfied, and should demand a sequel. Well done overall.
Review code provided by Nintendo.