Apollo Justice: Rants and aggravations.

Last night I raised my final objection in Apollo Justice’s second trial. The case ended, the defendant was found not guilty, the guilty party was arrested and I was watching the DS screen wondering what had just happened. It might be a surprise that I’m not new to this series, I’ve played through the Phoenix Wright trilogy before starting up Apollo Justice. I’m just having problems that this game is really part of the series.

I understand that with a new entry like this, the creators wanted to take things into another direction. That’s fine. I’ll forgive them for taking away Dick Gumshoe, the Fey family and their Kurain technique and even the old beloved Phoenix Wright. Their biggest mistake however, is in keeping the old Judge, pieces of music, backdrops, menus and worst of all still centering the story around Phoenix.

I may be complaining about this prematurely, but it is getting on my nerves. If they wanted to change the series, they should have gone all the way. Instead, the new character, Apollo, ends up working for Wright. He’ll send you on your way and tends to know everything about the case before Apollo even realizes what’s going on. I realize that we can’t have an all-powerful new defense attorney straight away, but Phoenix never was this useless in the beginning. It’s annoying when control is taken away from your character and put in the hands of a 15-year-old girl who already figured everything out. The moments that didn’t happen, the prosecutor did Apollo’s job for him, only asking him to provide evidence to see if you could still follow with him.

Weaknesses of the new main character and ill-focus of the general plot aside, what really got on my nerves last night was how much of the second case just did not add up.

Let’s review the case, before I point out what’s wrong. There will be spoilers, so consider this your warning.

The hot-headed son of the Kitaki maffia family, Wocky, is accused of murder of his doctor by shooting him in his right temple. His fingerprints weren’t on the gun. However, there was a knife at the crime scene, unused, but with his fingerprints. The doctor was found in the middle of a park, pulling a noodle stand.

Half a year ago, the kid was shot in the chest and the doctor operated on him to take the bullet out. The bullet was too close to the heart to be pulled out, so instead the doctor just closed him up again and lied to the family. He knew he couldn’t fix him up and was afraid that if the family found out, he’d be killed. After a recent check-up, they found out it was still there. Wocky had gone to the doctor with the intention of killing the doctor. He took a shot-cut through the park where he ran into him, pulling the noodle stand.

Wocky’s girlfriend, Tia, stole Wocky’s gun and went to meet with the doctor before all of this. She fired a shot in his office, which somehow ended up inside the safe before being strangled with the chord of a nearby lamp. Thinking he had killed her, the doctor stole his neighbor’s noodle stand, put the body in there and pulled the stand to the park to dispose of the body in the river. The girl woke up while in the stand and shot him.

Now first of all… The victim is a doctor. If anyone should be able to tell the difference between a corpse and an unconscious person, it’s a doctor.

How did Wocky not notice the fact that his girlfriend stole his gun?

How did that bullet end up inside the safe? I’d understand it if it was outside of it, sure. But inside? There were no bullet holes in it. The whole reason Tia went to the office was because she used to be an assistant there and there were papers in the safe connecting her time there to Wocky’s operation. She wanted those papers gone. If the safe had been open, she most likely wouldn’t have problems shooting the doctor and taking the papers.

The biggest problem I had with the case however, is the fact that the doctor left the gun with Tia inside the noodle stand. This doesn’t make sense no matter how I look at it.

For a game in a series that has you paying attention to every little detail, these are extremely big flaws in writing.

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