Android 2.3 or up
“If there were no bad people, there would be no good lawyers.” – Charles Dickens
You may find this quote close to fictional lawyer Max McMann’s heart, if not on a plaque somewhere in his seedy office or written for keepsake to tuck away in his cheap suit. He’s the start of the new app “Devil’s Attorney”, and he is not necessarily a bad man, just a damn good lawyer.
“Devil’s Attorney” is an app similar in concept to the successful DS lawyer series, “Phoenix Wright”. The twist here is that you don’t play a crusader of justice, so much as a chaser of ambulances, as it’s pretty clear that McMann became a lawyer for the specific purpose of making a lot of money, as his clients are almost exclusively of the guilty persuasion (though he would strongly advise they do not make a similar plea in court).
The game is made up of over 50 cases where the player, as Max, has to out maneuver the prosecution and their witnesses. The court scenes are broken down into rounds, and you are given a certain amount of action points to spend on maneuvers like Cross Examination, Epic Speech, Mesmerize, and of course the always useful Tamper With Evidence. You’re trying to use your actions to “defeat” witnesses, and the evidence itself, by draining their hit points (call it “character assassination”) and taking them out of the game, making this very much like a traditional RPG. Once you run out of action points, your round is over and you have to weather the prosecutions attacks.
Appropriately, it’s not so much about the case as it is about the tactics. You have to manage your action points well as you often either focus your efforts on one witness or evidence piece at a time, or spread the damage throughout. Win a case, and you’re rewarded with cold hard cash, which can be used to purchase new suits or furniture for your apartment, which in turn grants new abilities or enhancements to your current ones. So you could, for instance, swagger into your next case wearing a feathered pimp hat, zebra suit and monocle, while wielding a hammer for extra evidence tampering abilities.
The key to the entire game is its humor, which is strangely (yet successfully) rooted pretty firmly in 80’s pop culture. The actual court room mechanics works okay, but if it wasn’t for the insane amount of fun this game is having with everything from the bizarre cases, to the gut busting humorous dialogue, and the gaudy swag that doubles as upgrades, this might be a completely forgettable game. Instead it is that aspect that drives you to keep playing (and enjoying this game) until the final case is closed. It is a rare feature in a video game where you get to play the bad guy, and it is truly a welcome change of pace to be able to speak on behalf of some of the worst criminals imaginable all in the pursuit of the mighty dollar.
The constant amount of artistic style and comedy on display in “Devil’s Attorney” is a true joy. It’s a morally objectionable game that isn’t trying to be offensive, and instead milks a demented concept for all the black humor and enjoyment it is worth. I do wish the game were a bit longer, but what’s here is solid gold.
As your attorney I advise you to buy this game right away as well as check out the incredible 80’s style intro below. Afterwards, I don’t think I’ll hear any objections to this being the app of the week.