Professor Layton versus Phoenix Wright 7/10
So this game was good, albeit it was really good until the final chapters, where things started to get messy, and my other flaws of the game started to appear and become all the more apparent
For one, I do like the interactions Wright and Layton have with each other a lot, or when Maya and Luke interact, or Luke is with Wright or Maya is with Layton in certain parts. The dialogue and chemistry and how the personalities of Maya and Phoenix from AA clash with Luke and Layton from PL works really well, with some really funny dialogue. I especially enjoyed Phoenix and Maya being able to solve some puzzles or Layton and Luke working with Phoenix in the witch trials, it’s really well done with how the two gameplays from the two series are there together and it works overall very well.
Labyrinthia is also a cool setting, even if it is quite weird to see Phoenix and Maya in a medieval fantasy setting where they have trials where witches are burned in cages and there’s magic. Some of the original characters from this game like Jean Greyel and Emeer are wonderful, and the mystery of the town is interesting throughout with a crazy Layton-like plot twist at the end.
Overall the emotion and atmosphere will really hit sometimes (especially when Greyel finds out the truth about Belduke), and it’s really charming a lot of the time too. Darklaw is a great antagonist and Barnham is good as the prosecutor in this game, hitting the line pretty well of being blunt and harsh but not being an asshole and mostly being fair, compared to other prosecutors from AA. And the court gameplay is just as great as it is in AA, with some new features like the multiple witnesses before GAA did it.
As for my flaws, Espella is a really annoying character and a really bad plot device, turning out to be a character I disliked a lot. Throughout the game she’s the damsel in distress, like Flora from PL and Maya from AA, but worse. Her constantly sacrificing herself, claiming she is a witch, being in danger, gets very tiring over the course of the game. And it just annoys me how the other characters seem to just completely trust her and so desired to save her. The real nail in the coffin was that throughout the game she was thought to be the one who rang the bell that summoned Bezella and burned the town down, and thinks she was the great witch which is generally an interesting story, but it turns out no, it was Darklaw who did it, and Espella didn’t do anything wrong. Everything that could’ve made her interesting or have a cool story was completely gone after that twist. And she just has nothing enjoyable, charming, interesting, likeable about her character, she has nothing, and is just generally one of my least favorite characters I’ve seen in a game.
And also It just felt so obvious Layton and Maya didn’t really die in a crossover game, which didn’t make me feel any emotion when they were thought to be and Luke and Phoenix were grieving. It just felt really forced and the final chapter is a mess, the plot twist and ending with everything going back to normal didn’t sit well with me, and Barnham being in the sidelines not being the prosecutor at all in any part in the final trial felt disappointing, and Arthur’s actions still don’t really make sense. It was just a really anticlimactic way to end the game after all the cool mysteries the game had, it ended with a really tasteless feeling
So overall, gameplay is really good, I love the dynamics Layton and Phoenix have and how their gameplay is intertwined, I really like characters like Greyel and Emeer, and some parts are amazing, but Espella, forced writing on some parts, and the plot twist and really anticlimactic ending weakened my enjoyment a lot, which is a shame because I really liked it from the beginning to Golden Court but after Golden Court I was pretty disappointed.