The Great Ace Attorney July 20 Feature

The Great Ace Attorney developers discuss London and Music

In the latest issue of Nintendo Dream magazine, The Great Ace Attorney director Shu Takumi and composer Yasumasa Kitagawa gave an interviewed about the game.

One of the questions posed to Takumi was what left the greatest impression on him during development. He explains that because he was creating a whole new world, it took more time that he anticipated to create the scenarios. He also mentions he was actually in a hospital for roughly a month while The Great Ace Attorney was being made.

“It was just when we had to decide on a logo in order to announce The Great Ace Attorney, so I checked designs in the hospital.” he said. “Seeing the logo reminds me a bit of the scent in a hospital room (laughs).”.

Nintendo Dream then asked Takumi if it would have been possible to start the first chapter of the game from London instead of Japan. Regarding this, he comments that he did personally intend to begin the story from that city at first. But as he explained:

“I thought it would be too luxurious to create the Japanese law system just for the prologue. But [art director Kazuya] Nuri was the first from the development staff to say ‘we should start from Japan’. The discussion turned into ‘let’s create the Japanese law system’ and we ended up starting the story from Japan.”

Later portions of the interview focus on music. Kitagawa and Takumi shared these thoughts when Nintendo Dream asked Kitagawa what he thought of the music in the Ace Attorney series:

Kitagawa: Originally I played Ace Attorney as a player and I’ve been playing all the way starting from the first game.

Takumi: Really? (laughs)

Kitagawa: Really! This is my opinion, but I think the music of Ace Attorney is very “game-like” music. In the olden days there were limits for the capacity and the number of sounds, but you tried to squeeze in much even within these limits. Therefore old game music is strong in a good way. That’s also true for Ace Attorney. So although 3DS can have music that is similar to CD in quality, the music of The Great Ace Attorney has inherited the mindset of old game music. The music was created by doing trial and error while paying attention to catchy melodies.

Finally, Takumi and Kitagawa discussed the sort of image Takumi had in mind for the music of The Great Ace Attorney in the beginning:

Takumi: I have always been immersed in the electronic music of Ace Attorney, but for the collaboration title I wanted to have a festive feeling for the music and therefore I requested live full orchestra music from Mr. Kitagawa for the first time. This time around we inherited the live instruments from the previous game, but I wanted to have fewer instruments. Later I also told I wanted the music to be “Great Britain-like”. But I don’t know what would make it more “Great Britain-like” (laughs).

Kitagawa: Wouldn’t “Great Britain-like” be something similar to Beatles? (laughs) In Great Ace Attorney, we decided to have sounds that are like chamber music. That is because if the music was [too] gorgeous, it wouldn’t match the image everyone has of the time period.

Takumi: We also talked about how to choose the sounds. Like using piano sound doesn’t feel quite right somehow. However, it’s hard to make differentiation while only using string and wind instruments, so we had various experiments how broad variety of tracks we can create. As a result, we did things like using Spanish elements. As Sherlock Holmes is famous for playing violin, we also tried using the tone of violin exclusively.