Nintendo 3DS

Ace Attorney: Spirit Of Justice’s Divination Seances Require Your Complete Attention




In an alcove at Capcom’s E3 2016 booth, flanked by Dead Rising 4 kiosks and a Monster Hunter Generations balloon, sat a courtroom. In this space, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice demos were presiding, with demo stations on the prosecution and defense’s benches. It was the sort of brief experience you expect from such an event, giving a glimpse at the game’s first trial, though this year it had an added bonus of properly introducing the Divination Seance mechanic.


Phoenix has a habit of being called in to defend people with which he’s personally acquainted, and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice is no different. The E3 case began in the High Court of Khura’in. His tour guide, Ahlbi Ur’gaid, who is also an aspiring monk, is on trial for murder and theft. Khura’in’s national treasure, the Founder’s Orb, was stolen and Paht Rohl, the man guarding it, was found dead beside it. It’s up to Phoenix to prove Ahlbi’s innocence, all while Gaspen Payne, the prosecutor, and Princess Rayfa attempt to prove he’s guilty.




The situation already starts off dire. Khura’in isn’t exactly fond of defense attorneys, believing Princess Rayfa’s Divination Seances are beyond reproach. To make things worse, Ahlbi doesn’t trust Phoenix, so he’s lying in his testimony. He tries to say he’s never seen the treasure box used to kill Paht Rohl, even though he mentions details only someone who’s seen it would know. Phoenix’s initial proding only confirms his client was actually on the season.


Princess Rayfa’s Divination Seance goes even further. She’s able to show the last few moments of a deceased person’s life, complete with words appearing over the vision that relate to things that were heard, felt, or smelled at the end. The scene here is unquestionably incriminating. Paht Rohl saw the treasure box. He was knocked out. The last few things he saw, heard, and smelled were Ahlbi holding something over his head while he said something we couldn’t hear, the smell of incense, and sounds from a ritual Dance of Devotion.


After the vision is done, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice allows Phoenix to analyze what he’s seen. He’s able to look at testimony where Princess Rayfa described events while rewatching the scene on the screen above. It’s possible to jump to various segments, via tabs on the bottom screen, and press certain events to get more information or dispute things. It’s also possible to pause the playback on the top screen, so  you aren’t distracted.


36d2518227c79dc22ece0857f168423c As an example, during the Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice demo case, the fact that Paht Rohl heard the Song of Ceremony is suspicious. The Dance of Devotion was supposed to have happened after his demise. Phoenix could investigate that statement and part of the Divination Seance to learn that this happened during a rehearsal for the dance. Breaking through a vision to learn the truth requires delicately and consistently analyzing what the deceased saw.


While the E3 demo of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice wasn’t too demanding, the new mechanic feels like one that could end up being one of the most nit-picky in the series. Between the words on screen describing the action, the descriptions of what’s presumed to have happened, and the videos to analyze, every bit of attention will be have to be focused on a Divination Seance to see the truth.


Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice will come to the North American and European Nintendo 3DS eShops in September 2016.

Jenni Lada
About The Author
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.