Capcom has released a free trail version of its upcoming courtroom simulator, playable in your browser.
Ace Attorney 5 seems to be the epitome of "good news, bad news" for its Western fans. Good news, the game is getting an awesome limited edition with a Phoenix Wright-themed 3DS case and statue. Bad news, Japan only. Good news, the game is coming to North America! Bad news, it will be exclusively available on the eShop as a digital download. Good news, Capcom has released a free trial version of the game to play in your browser. Bad news, it's only in Japanese.
Fighting through it with my limited understanding of Japanese was quite the feat. It features a lot of very difficult law related kanji and absolutely no furigana! Eek! What I was able to determine was that the demo begins with the first case, "Turnabout Countdown," when a explosion destroys the franchise's famed courtroom. It then picks up by putting you into the shoes of Phoenix Wright (known as Naruhodo Ryuuichi in the Japanese version), who meets his new assistant: Athena Cykes (Kokone Kizuki), and explains that he himself is back as an attorney after leaving the profession "for some reason."
Athena's close childhood friend Shinobu Morizumi (no English name as of yet) arrives as Phoenix's next client. Then, Apollo Justice (Hōsuke Odoroki), the hero of Ace Attorney 4, shows up, looking pretty badass with his eyepatch and overcoat. This month's edition of Famitsu revealed that series regulars Miles Edgeworth and Trucy Wright would be making an appearance in the new game, but they are absent from the demo.
The demo runs on PCs with Flash Player 10.3 or higher, although it may not work in some instances of Google Chrome. The most noticeable difference fans of the series will see is the change from 2D sprites to fully-animated 3D models. The models, along with the locations, look pretty great. Of course, there's no way to see the 3D effects that the 3DS is famous for, at least until a demo is released for download on the eShop.
The game will ship on July 25 in Japan, with a Western release following sometime "this fall."