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HOLD IT! This is the Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Headscratchers page, so it contains spoilers for this game. If you've already played the game or don't care about spoilers, then have a look!


  • How many crimes did the Cantabellas and Eve Belduke commit that the "lawyer" just ignored? This troper assumes that after the special episodes ended and the drugs wore off, a motion like this was filed:
    • Request for a class-action lawsuit, in the sum of $200,000,000 and $50,000 in punitve damages, and criminal charges:
    • Defendants: Arthur and Espella Cantabella and Eve Belduke
    • Plaintiffs: Phoenix Wright, Maya Fey, Herschel Layton, Luke Triton, Ridelle Mystere, Olivia Aldente, Elmeer Punchenbaug, Lettie Mailer, et al.
      • Involuntary manslaughter: Defendant Espella Cantabella and Eve Belduke rang a bell, causing a drug trip which unexpectedly lead to mass unconsciousness and deaths.
      • Arson: Deaths caused in above incident resulted from a fire caused by the defendants' actions.
      • Prision of justice: Defendants Arthur Cantabella and Eve Belduke willingly conspired to cover up the incident which caused said deaths and fire. Their consistent refusal to report the incident to the authorities negates the statute of limitations on this and the previous charges, and makes Eve Belduke culpable in the incident regardless of her age and mental status.
      • First degree murder: Conspiracy shown in previous charge caused the suicide of Doctor Newton Belduke.
      • Misrepresentation of contract: Defendant Arthur Cantabella arranged for the alteration of plaintiffs' lifestyles, most of whom signed a contract agreeing to this arrangement—but Cantabella failed to mention that said alteration would cause them to be placed in a medieval existence, without the comforts of modern society.
      • Fraud: Defendant Arthur Cantabella created dangerous, fraudulent trials.
      • False arrest: Defendant Arthur Cantabella convinced civilians that they had legal authority and had them arrest innooents under suspicion of witchcraft. An investigation by plaintiffs Layton, Wright, Fey and Triton confirmed that witchcraft did not exist, and Arthur Cantabella admitted in open court that he was aware that the entire legal system was a sham based on a lie.
      • False imprisonment: Plaintiffs who were arrested were held in prison until their fraudulent trial concluded.
      • Kidnapping: Plaintiffs were tricked into being sent to a primitive society, brainwashed, poisoned and in some cases, sent to another area following a fraudulent trial.
      • Reckless endangerment: Plaintiffs convicted in fraudulent trials were lowered into a pit of flames while encased in a metal coffin. placing them in severe danger.
      • Use of slave labor: Plaintiffs convicted in fraudulent trials were forced to work in illegal factories with no compensation.
      • Poisoning: Plaintiffs were willfully exposed to hallucinogenic ink and mind-control drugs.
      • We ask that the plaintiffs be extradited to America and held without bail, as they have strong ties to the English government and defendants Wright and Fey are American citizens.
      • Does that sound appropriate? Could they be charged with other crimes.
      • Actually, "Kidnapping" "Fraud" "False Arrest" "False Imprisonment" "Reckless Endangerment" "Use of Slave Labour" and "Poisoning" were part of the simulation "approved by the government" so all of those were legal.
      • It should also be noted that only Eve rang the bell; Espella backed out at the last minute. So in this hypothetical scenario, only Eve and Arthur would be charged, Espella didn't hurt anyone.
      • I object to the involuntary manslaughter charge. In order to be culpable, the defendants must have willingly committed an action that they could foresee would lead to a high risk of serious injury or death. No one can honestly say that they would expect ringing a bell in a bell tower to knock an entire town unconscious and kill them all in a fire. Furthermore, the first degree murder charge is excessive. Newton Belduke was a willing participant in the conspiracy and killed himself (as far as we can tell) of his own free will. It was clearly never the intention of either Arthur Cantabella nor Eve Belduke for Newton to commit suicide. That said, they could be guilty of manslaughter if anyone did die during the course of the project due to accidents, disease, what have you.
      • OBJECTION! There are a few charges that need to be dropped from these defendants.
      • Involuntary manslaughter: For one thing, both defendants Eve and Espella were only 10 and 6 respectively, too young to comprehend their actions. Also, no one knew about the bell's effect on the people; How can you charge two kids that did not know they had a dangerous weapon on hand?
      • In fact this just changes the charge to "Reckless Endangerment" on the part of Newton Belduke. We know that Arthur tried to warn Espella of the dangers of ringing the bell (poorly, in retrospect, but at least he tried). We do not know if Newton did the same with Eve. And with Eve being slightly older, she might have been able to comprehend the real reason the bell shouldn't be rung, instead of resorting to stories of witches. If Newton had properly warned Eve of the bell's dangers, the Great Fire might not have happened.
      • Arson: Uhh... last time I checked, neither Eve nor Espella were holding anything to light a fire during the incident and Arson involves the accused supposedly lighting the fire themselves. The fire was lit after everyone passed out, but the two girls did not actually light a fire. How is that Arson?
      • Use of slave labor/Misrepresentation of contract: OK, Let's point out a problem with this one: The contradiction is clear as day. Mr Cantebella explicitly stated that those a part of Project Labyrinthia were provided a contract to take part in these experiments. Also, unless we have a contract, we cannot say that Mr Cantebella lied in it, so there's not enough evidience to prove either charge.
      • Additional charge to be filed: The attempted murders, by Arthur Cantabella, of Hershel Layton and Luke Triton via use of weaponized automatons. Also, although it's entirely possible that the kidnapping charges could be handwaved away by the contracts the volunteers signed, it's a fact that Phoenix, Maya, Layton, and Luke had signed no contract.
      • It's possible that those four decided not to press charges for what happened.
  • Since the ending establishes that there is actually no magic, how did those statues come to life and attack Carmine's car? If they were robotic like the Storyteller's knights, that still doesn't explain what they were doing so close to London, where the accident occurred, nowhere near Labyrinthia. Also, how did Eve abduct Espella from Layton's home?
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    • While it's not explained in the game, there is a likely explanation for the accident. Darklaw planned to bring Layton to Labyrinthia from the start. Layton got involved because of Carmine. Which can only mean Carmine escaping Labyrinthia with Espella was part of the plan. Knowing this, and therefore that the statues could have been placed in advance, the accident could easily have in fact been staged, with the same techniques used to make magic appear real, which both people in the car were susceptible to. There was probably even a Shade in the back seat, with a silver bell at the ready.
    • The Shades still would have needed some sort of machinery to lift the car into the tree where it was found, but no signs of such a machine was found on the scene. And since his car was found near London, the pure black invisibility trick couldn't have worked.
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    • The statues probably were the machinery. If the Storyteller can dress up robots as knights, it's not a stretch to believe the same can be done with statues.
    • Confirmed by the second bonus chapter. As it happens, the statue is robotic and the Storyteller owns a slice of the park.
      • The special episodes are not canon though. The so-called "explanation" in said episode was the game taking a self-deprecating jab at it's own plot hole, not a legitimate explanation.
  • Why did the Storyteller send his knights to kill Layton? He went to a huge amount of trouble to keep people from dying in his story made real, but he chooses that moment to try and take a life?
    • As discussed on his character page, Layton was the Spanner in the Works of the storyteller's plan. He likely could not see an alternative, and decided to kill Layton to save all the others in his plan.
  • During the prologue trial, it's noted that Olivia attempted to attack Espella to keep her from finding out about the smuggling, but was knocked out before she could do any damage. But who actually did it? The trial ends after Olivia confesses to the thieving ring, and after the trial, it's even noted that they never found out who exactly the mysterious assailant from the shadows was.
    • It was almost certainly Darklaw, having tracked down Espella to bring her back to Labyrinthia.
    • Then why not just leave with her immediately? Also, how did Darklaw get on the ship unnoticed? True, the security guard was an idiot, but since she was unable to turn invisible she should have shown up on at least one of the cameras.
      • While magical invisibility doesn't exist, you're forgetting that invisibility cloaks exist, and was something Darklaw had. She likely used this to sneak on. Yes, it wouldn't seem invisible to anyone in London, but it'd still be a pure black-sheet covering her entire body as she walked around a dark and dimly-lit ship. She would have been VERY hard to spot on cameras, and if she got into a shadowy area she'd basically become "invisible". In fact, Phoenix notes that all witnesses (Olivia, Espella and Smiles) claim that no one else was in that room, despite it being a fact that someone else must have attacked Olivia. Her using the black cloak to blend into the room's shadows makes the most sense. PURE black is black that reflects no light and is as pure black as a shadow, so having your entire body hidden by pure black while in shadows would effectively cause you to blend in and become invisible. Pure black in real life is almost impossible to reproduce. As Layton said; "Things we often call black, mostly aren't pure black at all".
      • Darklaw couldn't take Espella away immediately because Smiles arrived immediately after she knocked out Olivia, and took Espella into custody. Attacking a security guard as well would have been pushing even her luck, so she decided to go along with it and rush through the trial and (slap on the wrist) punishment as quickly as possible instead. This was all so that the public eye didn't notice them and they could disappear again without a fuss.
  • How did Darklaw manage to bring Phoenix and Maya to Labyrinthia? Assuming that magic doesn't exist and that the pages of the Labyrinthia Historia were actually printed with the same drug that caused mass hypnosis, memory loss and unconsciousness, they would've passed out in the middle of a well-guarded courtroom lobby. How did Darklaw walk out of there with a lawyer and a spirit medium slung over her shoulders without being noticed? Especially since they were in London, where it would have been impossible for her to be invisible?
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    • Courtroom Lobbys in the Ace Attorney series being well-guarded? In one of the games, a prosecutor and a defendant are murdered in one, while in another game Phoenix himself is being attacked with a fire extinguisher while in one of these.
    • Good point, though the former left the body and the weapon in the elevator while the latter only had to return the extinguisher. Both were able to sneak away from the scene with no conspicuous evidence to slow them down, unless you count Von Karma's bullet wound in the shoulder, and were both caught in the end. Phoenix and Maya would have been a bit harder to conceal, unless courtroom lobbies and London streets are just really, really empty.
    • What's stopping Darklaw from using the same psychotic drugs on the guards? She could've done that so that they could not see anything deep black (how the Shades hide in plain side, how the machines are hidden, etc.), and then sneak out with ease while the two are covered in a black cloth.
    • Considering that abducting Phoenix was a snap decision after seeing how well he did in court, Darklaw probably wouldn't have had the foresight to drug the guards for what was supposed to be a low-key trial (Unless it was already in London's water supply...). But you do raise a good point with the suggestion thing. Maybe the Historia suggested to Phoenix and Maya that they should follow Darklaw, then forget?
      • We don't see anything between them opening the book and being bakers, so it's possible that there is more time that was erased when they forgot about the normal world. When they recovered their memories, they only remembered things before they were heavily exposed to the ink.
    • When they looked in the book they saw an illustration of themselves which obviously couldn't have been written in the book at that point. To me, at least, that implies their sudden discovery of the book and passing out was another false memory, inserted to make the shift between their old personalities and their new ones. And if that's a false memory, then Darklaw could've done anything to get them to go with her. (Say, take them out for congratulatory drinks and ether them like a normal villain.)
  • Did the townsfolk volunteer to have that hypnosis drug used on them? If not that seems like it would've been a huge ethics violation for a pharmaceutical company. I think a case could've been made for kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment at the very least. If any of the townsfolk bothered with pressing charges...
    • They volunteered. Mr Cantabella claims that everyone involved signed contracts agreeing to this... though how the children involved could provide meaningful consent is another matter.
    • Legal guardians are permitted to grant permission on the behalf of a child or infant in certain psychological studies... but some of the youngest NPCs appear to be seven or eight. They may have been born there.
      • Also, remember that not all these people have been there from the start. Arthur says that more and more people joined over time, growing the tiny village into a town plus an army of hundreds of shades. If someone with a seven-year-old child joined just a year ago, it's likely that their consent was given for their child as well as for themselves. There may not have been any children born in Laborynthia; even the new baby could have come in with its mother only the day before and everybody would act like they'd lived there all their lives.
  • If the machines were invisible until Layton and Wright throw the final spell, how could Luke see and use the crane before that?
    • If Taelende was a trigger word to break the hypnosis, then it's likely Layton figured that out before reaching the trial, as he had all the clues he needed to solve that puzzle. He and Luke could probably both see the machines.
  • Why was Kira sent to destroy the marketplace?
    • Specifically to give Phoenix hints about the Shades and the nature of the Witch Trials and the town, since Darklaw ended up involving him as well as Layton, whom she had been guiding to the truth from the very beginning. Since Phoenix was going to be the one to take the stand in Espella's Great Witch Trial, she needed him to work out the truth. The way Kira lets Phoenix take the bell and see her face is very conspicuous after all, not to mention the fact that the explosion was clearly rigged to happen as Phoenix walked by, and in a way that was pretty clearly not magical (at least to an outsider like him).
    • This is backed up by the fact that Kira is the only Shade not wearing a gas mask; while she's the only one we saw in Labyrinthia itself (as opposed to the Eldwitch Woods), it might have been part of Darklaw's plan for Phoenix to recognize her. It certainly makes more sense this way for Darklaw to have sent one of maybe three Shades (Kira, Robbs and Muggs) that Phoenix might have recognized, all of whom are new, as opposed to a more experienced Shade.
  • If it's already been established that the townsfolk have a condition that causes them to fall unconscious at the sound of pure silver being rung, why oh why did nothing happen when the Bell of Ruin was rung in the last video of the game? While the condition fades after a day or so of not drinking the water, and there was no specific time frame given from when the trial ended to when Layton & co. actually departed from Labyrinthia (although this troper assumes feels it was presented as the same morning), surely there would still be the condition in their systems. It also bugs me as more or less the entire town (or at least the NPCs we were given at least some form of introduction to) were standing on a pier at this point, surrounded by water. What would have happened if they'd all fallen in, unconscious?
    • The Storyteller says the condition expires in a day of not drinking the water, as you said. Nothing is "still in the system" according to him, so the easiest and most likely answer is indeed that at least a day had passed. Alternatively, the bell had been swapped for another with a similar design but of a different material.
      • Allow me to add that by the time the Special Episodes take place, the town has a new, uncontaminated water supply. (I think it's Episode 9 that it's mentioned in.) Perhaps it was already in place for when the Labyrinthia project was ended, and just needed to be switched over to.
  • How was the window in Layton's office/study fixed when we're made to assume the final scene there before the end credits is the first time Layton and Luke are back there since entering Labyrinthia?
    • Layton's office is apart of a London University in which he has regular visitors, some one would of noticed and tidied it up during their stay in Labyrinthia, awaiting an explanation when he returns. He's known to suddenly go on adventures so him disappearing wouldn't be seen as weird and they would likely expect him to return.
  • So, the Shades carry silver bells, and the town-folk have the condition that they fall asleep at the sound silver being hit. Hence how they could cause the larger acts of magic seemingly within seconds (like turning Layton into Gold/replacing him with a golden statue). I get that but...how does this work exactly? We know due to what happened during the legendary fire, that the people who fall unconscious don't just snap in and out of consciousness within a split-second while standing up. It makes them fall into a deep sleep basically. ...How is this "stopping time"? We see several times, moments where characters were supposed to have fallen unconscious so that the Shades could do their work, but it shows it like nothing happened. AKA, as though time literally froze. I get the whole hypnosis thing, but that wouldn't make people wake up laying on the floor then not questioning it and resume like nothing happened, in pitch perfect link up to how things were before the bell rang. I've been thinking for an explanation for this but I've found none.
    • While I spent quite a while assuming that whoever heard the bell passed out, I think the intended explanation may be that they simply lose awareness of their surroundings, in essence "spacing out" for a bit. A person in this state would continue standing where they were until they recovered and immediately remembering what they were doing, without realizing how much time had passed. So while time was not literally stopped, the person's PERCEPTION of time shut down for a while, leading to their brain "skipping" those seconds.
      • This would work if it wasn't for what happened during the fire. We clearly see that when people with the condition hear silver, they fall unconscious and then wake up on the floor at different times. We can MAYBE handwave the more strong effect of the larger silver-bell by the fact it's larger, but it'd still be impossible that every person would happen to wake up at the same time. And handwaving it with the brainwashing reasoning wouldn't work either. It wouldn't make what we SEE change. Unless we're seeing it from the character's perspective, but even then...it seems WAY too improbable that such a thing could occur where everything linked up. People would drink water at different rates and days for one, therefore have different strengths in reaction to the bells. Brainwashing can explain some things but not everything. Brainwashing people into thinking they're in sync seems impossible.
      • People were probably given a suggestion to insure they drink enough water. Mary the goatherd especially, since it's possible to go entire days without drinking anything but milk (I'm a bit of a milkaholic myself, so yes, I know it's possible). Perhaps the effect builds up to a point, and then the body is saturated so that it grows no stronger, so if someone drinks more than the needed dose (such as a farmer who gets thirsty out in the sun and drinks a gallon or more over the course of the day as he sweats), it doesn't affect them any more than someone who only drank the minimum dose.
      • Actually, yes it does change what we the players see. We wouldn't have seen Espella's book glow or Phoenix and Maya vanishing into thin air after reading it otherwise. And I really wouldn't put it past the ink and toxin memories to ignore some of the internal paradoxes of Labyrinthia (a person during the final witch trials suddenly realizes they have no memories of their supposed parents despite being quite sure they existed), such as falling over briefly.
    • I always assumed it was part of the hypnosis: if you hear the sound of a silver bell, you won't remember anything that happened from wehn you fall unconscious until you're totally standing up again.
    • All of this is well and good, but the problem arises when you try and use these handwaves for every single possible situation that the Shades would have found themselves "pausing time". There's situations where it makes no sense that everyone just fell unconcious. For starters, everyone would wake up at different times, which would just make whatever was happening prior to everyone falling unconscious go completely out of turn. Like when the silver bell is rung when Luke and the others are running to Layton and Maya. They're RUNNING. It makes no sense that'd they'd all wake up at the exact same time, get up, then start running in rhyme, like they were before. Just the odds of them waking up at the same time are really low. Expecting us to buy the fact that, on top of that, they all just then took off running in union like nothing happened, reaches comical levels. Just think of all the situations where a silver bell must have been rung, or those in which is could have been run. It doesn't make a lick of sense.
      • It's possible the Shades wait for everyone to wake up and be aware, and then use their hypnosis/memory-erasing drug to effectively "rewind" everyone's memories to the same time, where they can then repeat their earlier actions to a point where the "magic" that needs to happen is already set up.
    • There's also the question of how the Shades rationalize time of day in regards to the illusions. Many of the complex illusions (notably Godoor, the specific pose of the Layton statue, etc.) would have taken hours of unconsciousness and could not have been set up ahead of time even if the Shades had some idea of how they would play out. There's also the problem of witnesses: They'd have ot be knocked out for the duration of the illusions, too, or there'd be a gap in time. Same for everyone watching them, and everyone watching them, until the whole town is potentially KO'd (come to think of it, maybe that's why they never destroyed the bell tower). Either way, being knocked out for several hours would have caused the sky to noticeably change, resulting in the perception of lost time, and if the Shades tried to correct that with suggestion it would invariably result in heavy disruption of everyone's sleep patterns. So do the shades just knock everyone out for 24 hours every time a spell is cast?
      • A few subtle details of the ending might actually shed some light on that one. Genuine sunlight revealed all the pure-black machines, and the sky seemed covered by a grid. I believe Labyrinthia had an artificial day/night cycle that could be adjusted to mask that lost time. Of course, that raises the additional problem of why people not involved in that particular magic trick wouldn't notice the day suddenly getting longer.
    • You can keep coming up with bullshit science to hand-wave it forever. After years of doing this, they found a way to fine-tune the tone and size of a bell to knock people out for different periods, or they discover a second tone or some other means of waking people up simultaneously. The hypnosis could be used to suggest people not only not see pure black, but to not remember the texture of the invisibility robes, allowing the shades to hold people in position as they wake up, or each session of brainwashing will reaffirm that they should ignore certain shifts in the sky, or to block out the waking up process altogether. Maybe these tricks are so common and necessary in Labyrinthia that everyone gets knocked out so often they only think a day is 20 hours long. Considering the science behind the ink and the bells is so soft you could spread it on toast, we can come up with as many explanations as we like as to how the specifics work.
  • So...the bell-tower was invisible the entire time, until the lightening struck which burnt the invisibility sheet? How exactly does that work? Even if you can't see it, it's still there. Wouldn't someone run into it at some point? 9 years and 9 months of it being there, and no-one, not a single person, ever tried to walk over that spot? On that point...since it was hidden with a cloak, wouldn't the wind blow it around at some-point? Either way,such a thing being there for so long and no one noticing anything odd seems VERY unlikely.
    • (See next point for discussion)
  • The same thing as above applies to the machinery too. It's all over town. Did no one run into them at all? Or hear them working?
    • Recall that the bell tower and machinery are not actually invisible. The people of Labyrinthia have been hypnotized to not notice it. I would guess that they are still subconsciously aware of pure black objects and walk around them without even realizing that they are there. The bell tower's cloak was probably nailed down, and the machinery *very* well oiled. And, worst case scenario, if something is exposed the Shades can quickly stun everyone with the bells and mind-wipe them. It's entirely possible that such incidents have occurred before and were easily covered up until the bell tower, which was seen by most of the town and would take days to recloak.
      • That seems incredibly nonsensical...for one thing, machinery is on the roofs. In 10 years, there was bound to be people who needed to do repairs, ect. The chances of people not noticing something seems low, at best. And hand-waving it with brainwashing doesn't make sense, since, if I recall, the brainwashing anesthetic has the standard ability to "confuse" people, for lack of a better term, not "mind-wipe" them. This was only done once, to each person when they first entered the town, and think about it; if it was that easy, and that rule-less, to wipe someone's memories, couldn't a lot of the game's events have been easily cleared up with the Shades simply wiping some people's memories? I doubt it's something they can casually do. They can make people confused, and tricked, but humans, even weird humans, aren't stupid. They'd know something's up. It's true they could subconsciously be avoiding the clock-tower and machinery (although it's not as easy as "they can't feel it because they're brainwashed into not noticing it". This is proven untrue when Phoenix discusses the invisibility cloak in court, and everyone can clearly still "see" it exists, even if they can't visibly see it),but they could still hear some things. After all, it's not a case of the machines being oiled; we clearly see in a cut scene that the crane Luke uses makes noises when it's on...and yet, no one heard it? They're brainwashed into not noticing pure-black only, so they should have heard the noises at least. Yes, they could have been brainwashed into passing it up, but..10 years of this happening, without anyone finally realizing something's odd seems very unrealistic. Again, humans aren't stupid. We'd click eventually, to things like that.
      • You have a mind-controlled army maintaining the town. There probably is no need for anyone to do notable repairs to roofs. Also if people can be hypnotised to not see pure black, they can probably be hypnotised to assume the sounds of machinery are tantamount to the sound of the wind or some similar everyday occurrence.
      • Using logic like that can just explain anyway anything though. That just seems like too much a stretch.
      • It makes sense if you remember that the people of Labyrinthia are hypnotised weekly/fortnightly via the festivals to re-invigorate the hypnosis as well as put people under suggestion, however nonsensical. If it's in their contract that they are to stay away from complete black objects, then they would do so. Even if that isn't the case, it may be a subconsious thing in their head that they do not go near areas that have these, despite them not being able to see it.
  • So...one thing I don't get is why Kira and Greyerl were with everyone else to see off the gang at the end. I know they turned out to not be witches, and that neither person killed anyone, but...Greyerl DID commit some crimes. Kira herself did "kill" two people as well, even if their deaths were faked by the Shades. Shouldn't Kira having TRIED to kill at least warrant her not being released? Or was the town just in so much of a "let's start afresh" state, including Kira herself, they decided to give Kira a second chance, since her crimes didn't result in any actual bad things happening?
    • Remember that Kira and Greyerl had been hypnotized to believe that they were other people, as had the rest of the town. Blaming them for their actions under mind control hardly seems fair. It's also not unreasonable to think that Kira (and possibly Jean) were brainwashed into doing things and believing that they were their own ideas. After all, the Storyteller knew what Kira was going to do, since he wrote a Story about it. He just didn't realize that with Darklaw in charge of implementing the Story, she would have Kira frame Espella.
  • In the scene where the "witch", aka Darklaw, kidnapped Espella from Layton's office, how exactly did all that happen? We know magic doesn't exist, and since this is London the "using silver bells to make everyone fall unconscious" trick wouldn't work either. Which means that Darklaw literally transformed from a human form to a flying creature right in front of Layton and Luke. I can believe that maybe she set some system up to make it seem like she flew, but the transformation would be impossible.
    • It's worth noting that none of this occurred until after Layton and Luke had been exposed to the hypnotic ink in the Historia. Depending on what exact programming the initial exposure had (possibly the first page of the book says "If you can read this, here are the rules:") they might have still been vulnerable to pure black cloaks and, of course, suggestion (though they'd be immune to the bells unless someone had slipped the stuff into their tea). Darklaw might have simply used the distraction of the pigeon to invisibly open the door (I believe it was locked, but if she set up a flight device and planned for Layton's involvement, then she might have obtained a key somehow). The spell that takes out Espella was probably post-hypnotic suggestion and it actually looks quite a lot like Espella is caught by an invisible person and then handed to Darklaw.
  • The timeline, from the Ace Attorney perspective, is kinda messed up if you consider all the facts. References to Hazakura Temple, Luke Atmey, ect, place it after Trials & Tribulations. But Maya comments that Phoenix has "always gotten not a not guilty verdict", which would place it before "Farewell,My Turnabout" (Although it's worth noting that she could very well be talking metaphorically, plus since Matt's guilty verdict in Farewell,My Turnabout was a victory, morally, for Wright, it can be overlooked too). The special episodes also show Phoenix a year after the main game, yet he's still a lawyer (he states he's got a trial coming up), despite him losing his badge a month after Trials & Tribulations's events. One explanation could be that this is placed as a general "what if" with no actual timeline placement.
    • The two main theories seem to be that it takes place between Trials and Tribulations and Phoenix being disbarred several months later or that it takes place after the Mask de Masque case but before T&T ended. Of the two, the former seems more likely, and the fourth-wall demolishing special episodes are simply not canon.
  • Who made the mural under the Great Archive? It depicts the Legendary Fire (which was only 10 years ago) but was inside what Layton believed to be a very old chamber. Did he underestimate the age of the place, or what the mural put inside a room connected to the older civilization that the other ruins were built by? The presence of the fire dragon, Bezella and a black cat identical to Eve suggest that it was made by Espella (who confused Eve the cat with Eve Belduke). But why was it there, and who arranged for the puzzle for Layton to find it? Was it Darklaw? It may be worth noting that the Great Archive is one of the few buildings with fire damage on it, suggesting that the building itself was present before Project Labyrinthia even began.
    • It was almost definitely made by the older civilization as a depiction of the original legendary fire. It's said that a long time before the legendary fire that Eve unknowingly caused occurred, a disaster struck the old civilization thanks to what they then dubbed the "Bell of Ruin". Recall that this bell was called this with it's warning before the fire we know about happened. We can assume the same thing occurred back then too; the bell was rung,everyone fell unconscious and a fire spread. The older civilization believed the disaster to be the work of Bezella who was summoned by the bell though. It can be assumed that this mural was made back then, and then the second legendary fire occurred after the building was built, thus burning it. As for who sealed it...well, it was almost defiantly Arthur Cantabella. He likely sealed it and hid it's presence with a cryptic lock because it displayed Bezella burning down a town, and as we know, Arthur was trying to hide everything that could bring about memories of the fire or Bezella from Espella. Eve was then likely the one who wrote the "story"/message about a man solving the puzzle of the mural, to push Layton in the right direction.
  • One thing I still don't get (it might have been explained in game, but I can't recall): What's up with Godoor? For starters, how does creating portals work? They ring the bell, cut a hole in the desired wall, then when it's over with they do it again to refill the hole? Wouldn't Greyerl and any other "witches" think it's odd that this "portal" is literally just a hole in the wall, and not an actual portal? Plus...why does the "green walls only" rule exist? Is it just to narrow down where the spell can be used, to make it easier for the Shades? Or am I missing something?
    • The "green walls only" rule is for the benefit of the Shades, yes; they have to have rules in place so that they don't have to plan for quite as many contingencies for when and where a witch could use magic. As to the portal being only a hole, it's possible the witches received a suggestion that their Godoor portals would look magical, but then again, wouldn't you be a little amazed if a hole suddenly appeared in what you thought was a solid wall after only speaking a word?
  • What's up with Dimere too? The spell obviously "turns what the caster touches invisible", which would be the shades using pure-black cloaks to give that illusion. ...So, why did no one notice this? You could pass it off with "brainwashing", but it seems nonsensical that you could brainwash someone into not noticing that they're wearing a cloak. Or that the item they're holding happens to feel like cloth. And no, it's not as easy as "they can't feel it because they're brainwashed into not noticing it". This is proven untrue when Phoenix discusses the invisibility cloak in court, and everyone can clearly still "see" it exists, even if they can't visibly see it. They can feel it and know it's there. So...we've got people, who suddenly have cloths wrapped around themselves and objects they're touching, who don't notice this. Brainwashing people into not noticing? Maybe not noticing something temporary by a few seconds, but not something as continuous as this.
    • It's safe to assume that the 'witches' who could use Dimere just thought that it was supposed to be that way.
      • But that doesn't make much sense. The spell is that it "turns whatever the user touches invisible". It's strange that if indeed the 'witches' assumed it was supposed to work like this they'd never mention it once or put two and two together. If they could feel they were wearing a cloak when they suddenly performed the spell, they'd obviously realize. But there's no indication that anyone sees what happens after they cast the spell as anything other than things magically becoming invisible with the use of witchcraft. If the description for it in the Grand Grimore had been that it "summons a cloak to turn you and whatever you're touching invisible", then it'd make sense, or even if they handwaved it with the fact that it mentions that the spell causes a force-field or something to appear around the user...or just something. Expecting us to just "assume" that everyone shrugged it off is ridiculous. Humans aren't a bunch of idiots. We wouldn't all just hold the idiot ball and shrug off every thing that seems suspect.
      • Considering the whole town has been under hypnotic suggestion for a while now, it's not that much of a stretch that they don't think about it too much. That and the only people who would be making these things invisible are also witches, entities that Labyrinthia have condemned to fire. When it comes to being in a world that hates your existence and wishes to put you to the fire, things like "this spell makes me feel like I have wool/cotton around me" wouldn't do you much good.
  • So wait, we are just letting two little girls get away with causing the Legendary Fire? How the hell do they get away with causing so much damage and killing hundreds of people because there is no warning sign that says, "DO NOT TOUCH THE SILVER BELL"?
    • Why would you blame kids who didn't know what they were doing? They committed no crimes, all they did was ring a freaking bell. No one on the planet, any other planet, or any universe that could exist, would punish someone for accidentally killing people while they were LITTLE KIDS because they decided to not do what daddy said and rang a bell. Who in their right mind would even think that ringing a bell would cause something like THAT, let alone two small girls? If anything it was more Belduke's and Arthur's faults for not making it secure enough so that they could just wander up their. For what they did to count as even the LOWEST form of ANY crime that causing death could be, they would have had to have been incompetent in their judgement at the time. Which, again, I wanna stress a few things: 1) THEY WERE CHILDREN. Even if they DID break this, it wouldn't count. You can't judge kids on their competance to judge good from bad. That's asking the impossible. 2) It wouldn't fall under it anyway because AGAIN WHO WOULD THINK THAT KINDA DISASTER WOULD HAPPEN FROM A BELL BEING RUNG?. If it was something that you'd think could logically cause an incident, like if they went and played around with matches or a machine gun or something then sure, you could say they weren't acting responsibly. But, and it doesn't matter if "daddy said not to". Use that argument in court against a kid and you'd get thrown out in seconds. A kid's a kid. There's no reason to punish them because they did nothing wrong. This is what they did; THEY DISOBEYED DADDY AND RANG A BELL HE SAID NOT TO RING. What part of that deserves them being punished? Just because it happened to, beyond anyone's possible predictions, result in deaths, doesn't mean it changes that all they did was ring a bell they were told not to ring. Punishing them would reach ludicrous leaves.
    • Not even Arthur Cantabella and Newton Belduke were aware of what ringing the bell would do at that point - cause everyone to fall unconscious. They just wanted to save doing it until the next day to make it more special. It was just really bad timing they did it during the fire festival, so that the adults collapsed, and dropped their lit torches etc, which spread the flames, and none of the adults were conscious and able to put out the fire. This was an unfortunate accident, and I don't think any judge or jury would convict them, if they ever did go to court (which they wouldn't due to their age, plus how traumatised both girls were). Also, isn't them being so traumatised they buried the memories, and having to deal with everything since a punishment enough?
  • Why on earth didn't they just knock down the bell tower and remove the bell instead of throwing an invisibility cloak over it and calling it a day? The town had burnt to ashes and Espella was practically catatonic, it's not like anyone would have noticed the bell tower being removed.
    • When they decided to start the whole ruse, they probably realised the bell tower could be pretty useful if things got out of hand and they had to stun the whole town for some huge "magic" to happen. Before that, there was no real reason to destroy the tower rather than study it and find out what's the deal with the bell.
  • In the final trial, Espella has been brainwashed into believing that she summoned the dragon and killed the Storyteller, and she personally testifies to this effect before Phoenix points out the errors. Now think back to the first trial. Darklaw claims that Espella is pleading guilty to the theft and assault on the boat, but Espella remains silent except for one line about not being a witch. So... why did she never personally admit her guilt and intent to plea bargain to Phoenix? Darklaw didn't want her to be defended, so there was no reason to do the brainwashing any differently. And it is purely because of that silence that Phoenix chose to ignore instructions and give her a proper defense. (It's hard to chalk his decision up to believing in his client, as he literally knew nothing about her.)
    • The denial of being a witch is key. Remember that this is Espella's first time in a "foreign" court, and where she comes from, pleading guilty gets you dropped into a fire pit. What most likely happened is that, in her suggestible state, she thought she was in a witch court, and with her already present guilt, it overrode Eve's instructions to plead guilty and locked her brain, BSOD style.
    • The way I saw it, Espella's blank eyes were more from re-emerging memories of her trauma rather than brainwashing. Thus in the prologue trial, she'd say "I'm not a witch" because she's trying to deny that she was Bezella, which is what her trauma told her. Even in the final trial, she might have agreed with Darklaw's statements because they fit the story she believed in - that she was Bezella and actually killed her father.
  • When did Arthur/the Storyteller find out about his illness? Espella claims that the Historia Labyrinthia includes everything that would happen to the town in the future, making it seem like he'd planned out the whole thing in advance, including the ending (well, the intended ending). If that's the case, that might explain why the citizens are allowed to have children inside Labyrinthia without it becoming even more of a human rights violation than it already is- he'd only planned the project to last ten years, which would mean none of the children born during it would have time to become legal adults who would need to give consent to be part of the project, instead being subject to their parents who had already signed the contract.
    • You have to also remember that the Storyteller admits that he didn't create a full fictional identity for each and every resident of the town; he just gave them a few suggestions (that they had lived in town all their lives and what their job was to be), and then wrote the major events of the entire town. In that way, he's less The Chessmaster controlling all the minutiae of the world and more playing Xanatos Speed Chess against the whole town for the larger plot milestones. Remember, the hypnosis doesn't drastically alter a person's fundamental personality - Phoenix stilled liked to pound the table, shout, and point at stuff despite thinking he was a baker his entire life. So it's possible people met and fell in love entirely of their own accord, not because he wrote that they would; while the new mother thanks the Storyteller for her healthy baby, I'd think that's more akin to the way people in the real world often thank God for their children: God did not appear and tell them to marry a specific person and become pregnant at a specific time, but He still gets thanks for it for some "behind the scenes" work.
    • This raises another point, though: while parents can give consent for their young children, and the contract may state that future children born are implicitly consented for, what would happen if a parent of a twelve-year-old had joined at the start of the project? Their consent was given for them at the start (though they were certainly old enough they might object to it), but by the end of the project, they'd have been 22 and considered an adult in just about any nation. How do you get their informed consent when they've been raised within the system so long that they don't know anything outside of it? Even if you let their memories return, the memories of a twelve-year-old aren't exactly much use for surviving adulthood and the memories of their teen years bare little relation to the real world. And if they refuse to continue, how do you insure they'll keep quiet and not go blathering to the world about the secret town? Granted, they'll probably be taken for a looney, but still, you wouldn't want some vigilante conspiracy theory group hunting for your research facility.
      • It's possible that the people in charge of the project accounted for this, by not allowing children into Labyrinthia who would be adults by the time the project was over. After all, the kind of case such as you described never explicitly happens in-game. One must imagine that Jean has a lot of unresolved issues with her "loving" parents who brought her into this project to be made a witch, though...
  • So...what exactly was Darklaw's Plan A? Did she originally plan to make it so that Espella would be 'sent to the flames' in the Fire Witch trial? Did she plan on Layton stepping in during the trial?
    • This is what I think her plan was: 1) Allow Carmine to escape with Espella and lure in Layton. 2) Take Layton to Labyrinthia and let him loose. 3) Darklaw manipulates the Storyteller's latest story so that Espella gets framed. 4) Espella gets sent to the flames, and mindwiped into a shade. Darklaw sees it as a fitting punishment, that doesn't really HURT Espella. 5) Layton, upset over Espella, exposes the truth and takes down the Storyteller. Probably in a way that the townspeople want to drag him to court themselves. Either way, his future in his company is not bright. 6) The Storyteller is ruined, Espella has been punished. Revenge complete.
    • Eve probably expected Layton to be able to clear Espella for all charges except for the deed she was thought to actually have committed (causing the Legendary Fire) - everything was meant to get him to solve Labyrinthia's mystery. Framing Espella and getting her accused of witchcraft was probably meant to awaken her memories of the fire and make her realize what she had (supposedly) done.
  • Why was Darklaw okay with Espella getting convicted for the assault charges? I assume she use€d the ink to keep her in a trance during that entire time.
    • It seems like it was a modified plan to the one above, due to Aldente's attack. 1) Espella goes to jail. 2) Darlaw then goes back and makes sure that Layton dismantles Labyrinthia. Revenge complete.
    • Remember, Espella was, as could be shown in court, the daughter of wealthy and politically connected CEO Arthur Cantabella. The guilty plea was pure expedience, to get Espella back to Labyrinthia as soon as possible. Given who Espella was, the "punishment" Eve arranged was probably extremely light, with a built in chance to spirit Espella away.
  • Did the Shades intentionally screw Greyerl over in regards to turning the goat into gold instead of the leaf? Because the gold statue of the goat had to have been made in advance.
    • I'm thinking it was more the Storyteller who set Jean up. He picked her to be a witch, and gave the shades orders that when she uses the magic, to turn the goat into gold. (I shudder to think what else had been prepared if Jean had done it near a person, or her parents.) Probably another reason why Belduke committed suicide. He was party to an illusion that made a young girl attempt suicide.
    • This is likely, given this possibly Fridge Horror consideration: the Storyteller must've known that Belduke killed himself, even without the note (the room was locked from the inside, he knows magic doesn't exist, and the Shades would never have committed murder without order). So he must have had Greyerl think she strangled him, given her memories of using Godoor and the finger marks added to Belduke's neck. A pretty cold blooded way to cover up a suicide. Perhaps the Storyteller thought it wouldn't matter to Greyerl, given that the "self" he was framing wasn't real. What I wonder is, how much of Greyerl's childhood memories are real? She seems to be older than the ten year limit; perhaps the suicide attempt wasn't real either. Maybe Belduke took a random shine to this girl (perhaps because she reminded him of Eve or Espella in some way) and had Cantabella program in the story? Though if so, it seems a bit cruel to make her a witch too...
    • You also have to remember, Greyerl is older than ten, so that means she was already several years old when her parents decided to join the program. What kind of people want to run away from life and wipe their memories when they have a young daughter to raise? Not the nicest people, certainly. Perhaps her parents were convicted of murder and given a choice by the government: life in prison with their daughter lost in foster care, or joining this research facility as a family. The Storyteller then decided they didn't deserve to raise her (or, worse, feared that they might raise her badly - his hypnosis obviously didn't wipe Phoenix's personality, so it's conceivable theirs remained intact, too), and so he decided to make her a witch so she'd be caught, tried, and then raised among the Shades instead. What he didn't foresee was Jean being suicidal before the Inquisition "discovered" who had turned the goat to gold - which is understandable, as very, very few suicides are committed by prepubescent children. But, since Belduke found her and she was away from her parents (as was his original intent), the Storyteller decided to allow this one to slide and didn't tell the Inquisition where she was; he just had Darklaw make sure the Shades watched her just like any other witch.
  • How come the ancient civilisation that locked away the Bell of Ruin didn't simply melt it down? It is made of pure silver. Or if you'd like to say that the technology didn't exist back then (I know nothing about metals, forgive my ignorance), why didn't Belduke and Cantabella get it melted down afterwards? It's a very obvious hazard.
    • Before the fire, they didn't know the stories were anything more than superstition. After, well, the bell never rang, except for the end, so we don't know it was the same bell.
      • It's likely Arthur kept the bell around precisely because it could render the whole town unconscious. Who's to say he didn't ring it when something went horribly wrong, in order to give the Shades time to repair it? Remember, the Shades obviously have a different water source, or else they'd be falling asleep every time they rang their own little bells.
    • If the ancient civilization had the technology to make the bell, they had the technology to melt it down. More telling is how they made it in the first place: most ancient smithy work involved a lot of hammering, which would have resulted in the smith falling asleep and likely at least burning his face off, if not catching the whole workshop on fire. Did they find a silver bell from an even older civilization? Were they gifted it from a neighboring tribe who did not have the magic anti-silver water? If so, why did they not think their neighbors had sent a curse on them and go to war, rather than just burying the bell and claiming the land was haunted by a witch?
  • How did the Storyteller and Darklaw avoid the effects of the ink while distributing the Story in a parade? You could assume he wore a mask while writing it, but they're obviously not wearing any protective gear while tossing them around like confetti and all four heroes proved that just holding the page close enough to read is enough to make one susceptible to suggestion. Since they both know the world is fake, they must have a way of combating the hypnotic effects of the ink - and, since the parades are scheduled as much as two weeks apart, the effects are fairly long-lasting, too.
    • "...they must have a way of combating the hypnotic effects of the ink," that is probably it. Storyteller, Darklaw, and Belduke originated Project Labyrinthia and ran it from behind the scenes, so they would definitely have had ways to protect themselves from any accidental self-hypnosis. They'd likely have their own personal water supply separate from the ground water, they wouldn't be limited by the restrictions of being unable to see pure black, perhaps Belduke had developed a counter-drug to protect themselves from the ink's effects, among other ways. Point is, with the massive scale Project Labyrinthia had become by the time of the game, they would have definitely have put in some extra precautions for both their own safety and to maintain the ruse, and that would include not falling prey to their own hypnosis.
    • They might've used Taelende to keep themselves from being affected.
  • When Phoenix and Maya opened the book, an illustration of the two entering Labyrinthia was present. There is a clear contradiction to this statement! As both the Storyteller and Darklaw outright stated neither had any intention of bringing Phoenix and Maya there.
    • Maybe the book includes a hypnotic suggestion that "you see an illustration of you and your companion entering Labyrinthia".
  • When Layton and Luke opened the book, they were taken to Labyrinthia immediately, though that was shortly before the incident on the boat. Seeing how it would take at least several days to arrange a trial, how in the world did Phoenix and Maya get there first? (Or are we to believe that Luke and Layton were in a coma for a few days to a week, but to them it was only a split second blackout?)
    • Trials in the Ace Attorney world typically occur the day after the crime, so depending on how late the incident on the boat occurred, Layton and Luke were probably out for around half a day, considering that Phoenix got the not guilty verdict relatively quickly. Since Layton and Luke arrived in the cart, there was probably enough time to rush Phoenix and Maya in, hypnotize them and Patty, and set them up in the bakery. Remember that they weren't magically transported, and Labyrinthia is in the "real world". Since Darklaw was responsible for getting all of them in, she presumably manipulated the means of transport to make sure Phoenix and Maya got there first.
  • Why in the name of everything did the British government agree to fund the project to build a giant research town off the mainland of England, where a bunch of civilians would be made to believe they're in a fantasy world of witches and magic, just so Arthur Cantabella can keep up the charade to his daughter that a fake witch exists? And no, it's not as simple as the fact they had their own agenda of researching into hypnosis. If they wanted to do that, there were far more cheaper, cleaner, safer, moral, quicker and sane ways of doing so then throwing a bunch of volunteers into a huge and insane research town for 10 years straight. If they explained this in the game then please let me know, since I really would love an explanation for this.
    • 1: They had their own agenda. 2: Their contribution to the project was minimal. And 3: They received God knows how much hush money or incentives. If Labrellum funds the whole project and tells the government "hey I'll give you a foolproof hypnosis serum and ungodly amounts of cash just to keep this off the map" then why wouldn't they agree? They were getting a lot out of very little effort on their end.
      • Actually if I recall correctly it's said that the government were directly funding the project. They weren't just being paid to keep it hidden, they were directly involved in making it happened, and it was a government funded affair. It's true they could have their own agenda, but the project would be ridiculously expensive, and the only reason the government would agree to anything like that is if they'd get a positive out come. Say what you will about the government and how willing they'd be to do something so corrupt, but they still wouldn't do something that would be a massive waste of money: 'We'll pay for your daughter to get the very best psychological treatment possible, and provide basic funding, if you agree to conduct research into hypnosis'. That'd have surely been far less money they they actually ended up giving out.
  • Exactly why did Greyerl try to strangle Belduke? During the trial, Greyerl said she felt like something compelled her to do it, and I assumed that she was influenced by either Bezella or the Storyteller, but by the end of the game it's pretty clear that neither of those two would've tried to kill him.
    • Her saying she was compelled to do it was basically supposed to mean that she felt her sadness and anger control her actions. She was hurt deeply when she thought he was going to reveal that she was a witch, so her emotions "controlled" her into strangling him, against what she consciously wanted to do.
    • Greyerl's attempt to steal the letter involved the use of magic, but occurred after Belduke's death. Because the Shades would have been needed to create the "Godoor" illusion, it's a safe bet that Darklaw and the Storyteller were aware of Belduke's real cause of death before Greyerl "strangled" him. Perhaps, in order to cover up the reasons behind Belduke's suicide, they gave Greyerl the suggestions to strangle Belduke's body and neglect his letter. This might also explain why Darklaw was so keen on confiscating all of Belduke's poisons - both to disguise Belduke's cause of death, and to keep other real deaths from occurring.
  • While I realize that the truth behind Labyrinthia makes this kind of moot, how could a place as puzzle-obsessed as a typical Professor Layton setting have never heard of logic?
    • Perhaps because of the conditions of living in Labyrinthia, they have some form of "logic" but is not actually labelled as such and may be under-developed. This troper had the feeling that the knights sometimes struggle with puzzles that Layton can blow through pretty easily, with the exception of Barnham. It could also have something to do with accepting a world where one man writes your life and the lives of everyone else in the village.
  • Although it's never used within the course of the game, the spell "Famalia", which summons a spectral being that the witch can control, exists within the Grand Grimoire. It seems unlikely that it was just added to pad out the Grimoire's length, so how exactly could the Shades have created that illusion?
    • Paint a remote-controlled helicopter pure black, throw a purple cloak or something over it, and make sure it's in the air when everyone "unpauses".
      • I was under the impression that the Shades themselves acted as the familiars.
    • I think it's very likely a lot of spells are in the book to pad it out. After all they say there's only five witches in town at once and that means only ten spells (assuming there's no overlap). They might rotate some spells in and out when they change the Witch rolls but there's nowhere near enough to fill out the size of that lengthy tome. I imagine new spells are derived for the purpose of entertainment by some stage magicians who are in on the act. The big thing I wonder is why Goldor is in the roster of spells. Seems like a very needlessly expensive one to produce the effects of and one that the users would have a high motivation to spam the hell out of.
      • The gold they use to make the statues need not necessarily be gold or even entirely gold. This troper isn't quite up to scratch on how gold is tested for its validity but I assume medieval era townspeople like the Labyrinthians wouldn't be able to accurately tell gold from a fake depending on the tricks the Shades use to make it. Even if that is false for all we know perhaps the townspeople are brainwashed to be unable to identify the differences.
  • It's well-established that a big part of the Shades' smoke and mirrors involve KOing people by ringing silver bells so they can't see the "magic" happening. Obviously, this only works if everyone in the vicinity can hear the bell. Wouldn't the whole thing unravel in a heartbeat if a witness happened to be deaf, or had their ears plugged when a spell was cast? I find it highly improbable that neither of the preceding ever happened (after all, this is a town with Lettie Mailer in it!).
    • This may be stretching it a bit as I'm sure it's hearing the bell that causes it, but perhaps it has something to do with the frequency in silver that causes the body to fall unconsious.
    • If someone isn't listening and uncovers the secret then it's no big deal. They'd simply be taken away and brainwashed (or turned into a shade). The ridiculousness of maintaining the illusion is sort of the point of the experiment (from a research point of view anyway, not from a save my daughter from her own demons perspective). They want to see how far they can take hypnotism.
  • Up above there's a discussion about how Phoenix and Maya were taken to Labyrinthia. But I'm less interested in the how than the why. It was stated at the end that their presence was nothing more than an accident, but you don't accidentally drug people, hypnotize them to be bakers, and lug them to your unmarked social experiment town. Why didn't Darklaw (if indeed it was her) just leave them in London? Did they know too much?
    • Darklaw was attempting to take Espella before anything could happen but she gets caught on the tanker and is slapped with assault. She then tweaked her plan to let Espella be sentenced guilty, then take her back. Phoenix and Maya look at the book fir themselves (Which I assume starts the contract) and all of a sudden Darklaw has two people who are going to be in a hypnotised state for about a day, which will look odd to anyone around during that timeframe. All she could do to lower suspicions is take them along and give them a part in the Story.

      Basically it was a string of accidents that lead to that.
  • How exactly can you hypnotize people into seeing straight through objects and people with the instruction "you can't see pure black"? You'd just not notice anything that's pure black, you wouldn't see pure black things as invisible.
    • Maybe that's the point. It basically serves the same purpose; You can't process pure black in your brain.
      • But the invisibility cloaks are literally "invisible" to the people who have been hypnotized. It's made pretty clear a number of times that they don't just "not notice" them, they straight out can see right through them like they're not there. Like when Maya washes the cloak and it suddenly becomes "invisible". If everyone just was subconciously ignoring it, their reaction would be somewhat different. Less "it vanished" and more "wait, where did it go?". If you were subconciously ignoring an object like it wasn't there, your reactions would not be the same as if those objects were literally invisible.
    • Most of the time witches use the cloaks is when they are out of sight in the first place, and the cloak near the end of the game nets a "wait, where did it go" response when it vanished too. It doesn't help that a majority of the townspeople struggle with basic things like logic and puzzles, not to mention details as seen during the witch hunts. Do we ever know that they can see behind someone wearing the cloak or do they just think they can without stopping to think about how impossible it is?
  • Probably just an animation error, but when Layton comes to court to become the inquisitor at the end, the animated cutscene features Maya in her normal Kurain garb, not Barnham's helmet and the white coat she found.
    • The "white coat" is actually her apron.
  • If the true purpose of the Witch Staffs is to limit every witch to two spells (Ignaize and Dimere for Kira and Goldor and Godoor (as the Famalia stone is fake) for Jean Greyerl), why is the Great Witch Bezella able to cast any spell she wants?
    • Because she is the source of all the witches. Usually in stories where there is an alpha or an original, that is the most powerful of them all whereas the spawn are diluted in power.
    • Additionally, the Storyteller did not have anyone endowed with Bezella's powers until it was time for the final trial where one person would use just one spell as Bezella, so the idea that it would be too taxing on the Shades doesn't apply.
  • So if Layton figures out everything by the end, even how to outright end the final hypnosis that reveals the machines, what was the point of him taking up the Prosecutor's side and doing all that final running around against Phoenix when he could've just explained everything right then and there, then use the "Taelende" spell to prove himself. It just seemed like a rather forced way to actually have the "Vs." as in the title.
    • In a way, it reminds one of the first Ace Attorney game when the prosecution and defense work together. A big motif of both franchises is uncovering the truth, so doing that in the courts helps uncover what's really going on information wise, while Layton and Phoenix uttering the spell is showing the mystery for what it truly is.
      • You deliberately ignored the question: Why does Layton go through being a prosecutor when he could've just explained everything right there?
      • You seem to have ignored the answer. I explained why Layton went through prosecution; because he with Phoenix are working to uncover the truth in court, and then solve the mystery. I doubt Layton explaining everything while a witch trial is going on will help because everyone is either going to be confused or ignore him, so all he can do is play along and work towards it. He even states as such when Phoenix attempts to use modern evidence in an earlier case that it'd be a fruitless endeavour. Besides, even if he did know the truth it'd have to be validated first by Arthur in their courts. It also would serve the secondary purpose of letting the hypnotic ink/water's effects diminish by dragging out the trial.
    • Layton didn't have everything figured out before the court. He had uncovered a lot of it and certainly knew the Taelende spell but its pretty doubtful he knew of Eve's motvations (or even perhaps her identity) and the exact specifics of the hypnotism or what happened at the bell tower. He displays ignorance and the desire to know something specific several times.
    • The out-of-universe explanation might have been less justifying the "Vs." and more wanting to replicate the game's first trailer, which had Layton accusing Espella and Phoenix defending her as a big part of it. The story was changed a lot from that trailer, but that element was one they really wanted to keep in.
  • What's with the way Arthur Cantabella revealed his "incurable disease". 'I'm suffering from this disease no one can cure!' - Several moments later 'Nah just kidding. They've found a cure. I'll be fine'. It's like he did it that way just to be an asshole and make everyone upset.
    • Well to be fair that was Arthur's original reasoning for all the things he did recently but it turns out they just figured out a cure, possibly in a matter of days or hours ago. Even if it's not the case now, it wouldn't make much sense to skip to point B without explaining point A, even if it comes off as a dick move.
  • This could just be me looking way too deeply into what was supposed to be a joke scene, but how exactly did Maya manage to attack Phoenix in front of the entire courtroom and escape punishment for it? It seems like a relatively minor point to bring up over a simple joke, but then I thought about it and realized: Maya basically just committed the very crime the trial was over in the first place. This troper finds it a little odd how it's therefore just brushed off as a simple joke.
    • You mean when she hit Phoenix with the crowbar or rod (whatever it was)? Rule of Funny.
      • The original being made is that they find it odd that it's brushed off with Rule of Funny, so this doesn't exactly do anything to answer the point being made.
  • I know you could just handwave it by going "pseudoscience, deal with it", but I just can't wrap my head around the concept of the contaminated water and silver bells. Not even in a "it's a fictional condition just roll with it" way, it just doesn't make sense even on a pseudoscience level to me: What does a "condition where you fall unconscious when you hear silver being struck" even mean? Why is it so specific to silver? Do the people actually have to hear it hear it, or is silver being struck in the vague facility enough? How is that even remotely a thing that could happen to the human body? Ringing one of those tiny silver bells is enough to spark the condition's symptoms? And I repeat: how the heck could a condition like that even exist?. The hypnotizing plants I can get behind. The second Layton game's gas, I could buy as well. As pseudo-y as they are, hypnotizing is a real thing to degrees so I can stretch my disbelief to buy that stuff like those could exist in Layton-land. But this condition doesn't even make any logical sense: It's such a far-fetched, magical sounding condition that's very possible existence is literally not explained, that it kinda seems ridiculous that they even bothered trying to make it a "condition". They might as well have just said "the water's magic", and left it at that.
    • It's pseudoscience, deal with it. Drinking this water causes people to space out or faint or whatever when they hear the tone of something pure silver being struck. Think of it as having something to do with resonances and that the tone of the silver being struck hits just the right frequency to render someone unconscious.
      • Fair enough, I guess. I just think it's a massive pseudoscience Mcguffin, but then again, so is a lot in the Layton series.
  • The first witch trial. Kira tried to frame Espella as the Great Witch Bezella by burning the two would-be muggers alive and drop her Witch Staff near Espella. However, as revealed in the last trial, Bezella does not need a Witch Staff to cast spells. So why did Kira drop the Staff if not dropping it would make Espella more likely to be Bezella?
    • Kira wasn't trying to frame Espella as Bezella. Her goal was to just get her sent to the flames. Kira genuinely believed Espella was the Great Witch Bezella, and with the stipulation for ending the witch trials being "once Bezella is sent the flames", she was just trying to get he found guilty in any way she could. It was easier to frame her as an ordinary witch who murdered some rouges, then it would be trying to frame her as the Great Witch Bezella.
  • So...Are Phoenix and Maya speaking English as a second language in the Japanese version? Seems the localisers really lucked out in insisting Ace Attorney takes place in America for a change.
    • This is a common thing in fiction, when you are people from different countries, or even different planets, seemingly talking to each other without any issue. In the same vein, are Phoenix and Maya speaking Khura'inese in Spirit of Justice or is everyone else speaking English? We're just supposed to accept that they're all able to understand each other somehow, despite the fact that Phoenix flat out says in that game he can't speak Khura'inese, and the Khura'inese people wouldn't be speaking in English. It's just convenient for storytelling to not have to explain it.
    • No, they are explicitly speaking English in Spirit of Justice. Khura'inese is a language that exists, is heard spoken, seen written and specifically not understood by Phoenix and co when used. The fact that every character they encounter speaks perfect English is...well a little strange (Ahlbi in particular) but it's still definitely what's happening. It's even a plot point that Pees'lubn Andistan'dhin has trouble with Khura'inese script because he's a foreigner. Khura'in must have been a colony or Britain for a while or something (wouldn't really conflict with the whole keeps independent with spirit channeling given how turbulent some areas are since the fall of colonization).
      • You don't seem to understand. The fact that everyone is communicating despite Khura'inese being displayed as a different seperate language to what's being spoken by everyone is the exact point I meant. To use another example from another series, I was recently playing Trauma Center New Blood, and the protagonists traveled to a fictional country in Africa. There's one part that has an African nurse directly translate stuff an African worker is saying in his native language, despite the fact that the entire time otherwise everyone in the country seems to be speaking in African accented English, and the protagonists can communicate with them just fine. We even see the native text and hear him say it out loud, so it's shown as separate from what everyone's apparently speaking in, despite that making no sense. It's common in fiction, as I've said.
  • If a witch needs a "Witch Staff" to use magic, and all witches are burned in the trials, then how did the witches first get their Witch Staff, and why did they keep it? I can imagine the possibility that the Storyteller's minions would be making these staves for their scripted witches as part of his story, but why wouldn't they just bury/burn/throw away the staff when they find it? It seems to me that if you don't want to be accused of witchcraft and you want to live a life as a normal person then you should avoid witch staves and not cast spells.
    • Probably an effect of the suggestive ink on the pages. Initially all participants agree to a contract which also doubles as assigning them their roles. For the would-be witches, it'd probably be something like "You're going to be assigned as a witch and will be given a staff. Under no circumstances may you destroy your staff or stray far from it." This in combination with when a witch would next strike in the Storyteller's pages would make the witches commit their acts, and the former would help strengthen the need for Kira to be a witness at the court besides her glasses. At any rate it likely wouldn't have occurred to them to simply do the logical thing; the townsfolk have to put in a tremendous effort to solve puzzles if they even want to become knights, so logic isn't their strong suit.
  • Aren't we supposed to be proving people innocent? It seems as if as soon as a guilty party is discovered the case is considered wrapped regardless of the original charges. In Trial 1 proving the victim was a diamond thief was pretty meaningless. Espella was still seemingly the only one present and the only one that could commit the assault. The only thing her attacking Espella first could prove was that it was justified self defense. Yet everyone acts as if Espella is obviously innocent as soon as the victim is discovered to be guilty of something unrelated. In Trial 3 Maya is still the most likely suspect for turning Layton to Gold. Greyerl admits to being a witch but she also says someone else turned Layton to gold. Greyerl offers no explanation of what the witch who did it looked like (and probably didn't even see her when trying to dispose of her staff). The possibility of another witch suddenly appearing out of nowhere, turning Layton to gold and then vanishing before the witnesses arrive is just as implausible before and after Jean is outed as a witch.
    • Espella was proven innocent simply because the circumstances (the way she was holding the pipe with fingerprints as proof, her size and position in front of the victim) meant it was impossible for her to have committed the assault. The justified self defense falls flat on its face as the motive for Olivia attacking Espella was because of the diamonds hidden within the plushie she was holding. Espella's only other charges at that point was theft of a plushie and possibly stowing away on a boat; the major charge had been dropped and it's likely she would've been taken into court at another date for the other charges before she was taken back to Labyrinthia. As for case 3, Jean Greyerl pretty much confessed that she was the one who dropped the Talea Magica into the scene shortly after Layton was turned into gold in the hopes of disposing it at the crime scene. We also know it's undoubtedly hers as she swapped the Godoor gem out for her amethyst to be mistaken for a Familia gem. No other Talea Magica was found at the scene and the only other suspected witch who could cast magic without one was sitting in jail at the time, so it's impossible for Maya Fey to be the guilty of the crime.
    • With the assault, remember that Espella's fingerprints were only found on the pipe on one end, in a reversed postion. That was the main point of dispute, and it proved that Espella only held it once, backhanded. As Phoenix pointed out, the idea that a short girl could hit a taller girl on the back of the head hard enough to knock them out, while holding the weapon backhanded, during a face to face confrontation, while also not leaving any other fingerprints than a single set of 10 backhanded ones, is flat out ludicrous. The fingerprints ironically prove her innocent, since they show she only held the pipe once to defend herself. And the assault charge was the only one that was really worth the prosecution's time pursuing. Without that all they have on Espella is the theft of the plushie, which essentially amounts to "she picked up a plushie without consent which counts as theft". That's hardly something any court is going to waste their time on. Phoenix even points out during a specific press of the final cross-examination that the prosecution's only real argument that Espella was committing theft being that she picked the doll up off the floor, is really weak and doesn't make much sense in the long run.
  • How did Luke manage to catch Espella and Darklaw with the crane? Ignoring the fact that it's pretty ridiculous that a kid could learn how to operate a crane like that so quickly, they were falling downwards towards the ground. The crane's grabbers are aimed downwards, like any normal crane with grabbers. To grab on to them as they fell, Luke would've had to have waited until they past the crane, then dropped the crane suddenly to grab onto them before they hit the ground. Considering how little room there actually was between the crane and the ground though that seems really improbable to me.
  • Just how freaking broad is the suggestion of the hypnotic ink in the first place? After only being exposed to it for a matter of seconds (the ink being on the pages of a book that was written years ago no less, so it couldn't have had much potency left), Luke and Layton had exposed to a trigger-suggestion that allowed them to think Darklaw was a bird and that after entering their office, she transformed from that bird into a witch, then that she used a spell to knock Espella unconscious, and levitate her into her arms, then that she flew out of the office and into the night sky, leaving the entire place trashed. That's one hell of a broad set of "rules" that can be inflicted onto someone, just by sniffing some ink for a few seconds. No scratch that. Just by breathing near a piece of paper that someone used ink made from hypnotic substances years ago.
    • To be fair on one of those points, it's possible that whatever Darklaw did to escape really did trash Layton's office, and that it was just fixed up by the time we see it in the epilogue.
  • If the brain-washing and hypnosis was this ridiculously reliable and foolproof, to the point where they could hypnotize people into convincing themselves a certain color is invisible, that they're witnessing transformations, and the like, why exactly did they bother with the "pure black" thing in the first place? Why not just plant a suggestion like, "you cannot see machinery that isn't meant to be there", for the machinery around town, for example? Or heck, given how stupidly broad the logic of the hypnotism is, something like "just ignore anything that doesn't make sense" could've worked.
    • Simplicity. Assigning the townsfolk to not see a simple color (or in this case, lack thereof) is much simpler than telling them more complicated commands like, "ignore the machinery and people in cloaks". This way, if there's something that they need to hide, simply paint it pitch black. This would also future-proof any new factors and machinery introduced later into the project, as older townsfolk already under their hypnotic contract probably can't revise theirs to accommodate new conditions, only refresh it through the ink.
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