It's the developer's unwillingness to change this established formula that holds the third game back a bit. You'll still have times where you can't advance the story because you failed to present some random object to some random person. None of the DS-specific features, such as the cool 3D evidence or fingerprint identification introduced in the bonus case in the first game, were added to this one. This is a shame because there were certainly plenty of times where it would have fit in nicely. But none of these problems ruin the game because it's still long and enjoyable.
And it's a nice looking one too. The animation and artwork of the returning characters have been recycled to the point that even Al Gore thinks Capcom got carried away, but they still look good, as do the new characters. Even with just a few frames of animation, the game can instantly convey a person's mood. The new backgrounds are also nicely done, fitting right in with all the backgrounds and areas that are back for a third time. Seriously, isn't the guard in the detention center tired of standing at that door?!
The music in Trials and Tribulations is fantastic. This is one area where Capcom's incessant recycling of assets doesn't hurt the game--each person's theme song fits him or her to a T. Just a few bars into Maya's happy-go-lucky theme and you'll know just what kind of person she is in the game. Equally fitting is the intense music that plays when the stakes are highest at crucial points of the trial.
With the next game in the series set to focus on a whole new cast of characters, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trials and Tribulations brings this three-game story arc to a satisfying conclusion. It's just a shame that Capcom didn't do more to spice up a formula that feels a tad bit stale here. If you've played and loved the first two Phoenix Wright games--flaws and all--you'll be plenty happy with Trials and Tribulations. It's a good game. Case Closed.