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Shu Takumi (巧 舟 Takumi Shuu) is a Japanese video game developer working at Capcom who created the Ace Attorney series and directed many of its games. He also provided the original voice for Phoenix Wright in the Japanese versions of the original trilogy games, and composed the song "The Guitar's Serenade". He is also known for creating Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective.
Shu Takumi joined Capcom in 1994 along with Hideki Kamiya (who would later voice Godot). The first game on which he worked was Gakkou no Kowai Uwasa: Hanako-san ga Kita!! (学校のコワイうわさ 花子さんがきた!!; lit. "Here Comes Hanako: Scary Stories of Your School!!), a 1995 video game adaptation of an anime of the same name. He was designated as a planner, and because the director was busy with multiple projects, Takumi had some freedom in his role. In the years that followed, Takumi came up with an idea for a detective game, though nothing came out of it at first.
Takumi was later picked up by Shinji Mikami to work on Dino Crisis. However, in early 1997, the Dino Crisis team was temporarily redirected to help work on the ill-fated original version of Resident Evil 2. Takumi was then made director of the Dino Crisis project before being demoted to planner, being responsible for the first half of the game. He was then made director of Dino Crisis 2, and was able to maintain his position throughout the game's development.
After the release of Dino Crisis 2, Takumi was given an opportunity to make whatever game he wanted with a small team of seven. He conceived of a detective-themed visual novel that would allow the player to input his or her deductions in some way. He thought of two ways to achieve this, one being a "joint reasoning" system in which the player would correct the deductions of a detective, and a court system in which the player, as a lawyer, would point out contradictions between witness testimony and evidence. His team began work on Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, a realization of the latter concept.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney was originally intended for the Game Boy Color, but after being shown a demo of Mega Man Battle Network on a prototype Game Boy Advance, development moved enthusiastically to the then-upcoming handheld. Despite being such a small project with only two programmers and two graphical asset developers, with Takumi taking on the roles of planner, director and scenario writer, the team managed to finish the game in ten months. The producer liked the game so much that he requested that it be made into a trilogy. Thus, Justice For All and Trials and Tribulations were produced in 2002 and 2004, respectively, followed by Nintendo DS ports of the three games, which were released internationally.
The 2007 game Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney was the last entry in the main series made under Takumi, who went on to create Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective. After the release of the Nintendo 3DS, Takumi came back as scenario writer for the crossover game Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. He is now working on a spinoff series of Ace Attorney games taking place in Victorian London and incorporating the "joint reasoning" system that he had conceived all those years before, starting with Dai Gyakuten Saiban: Naruhodō Ryūnosuke no Bōken, which was released in 2015.
Shu Takumi is credited in the following games:
- Gakkou no Kowai Uwasa: Hanako-san ga Kita!! (1995)
- Resident Evil 2 (1998)
- Dino Crisis (1999)
- Dino Crisis 2 (2000)
- Gyakuten Saiban (2001)
- Gyakuten Saiban 2 (2002)
- Gyakuten Saiban 3 (2004)
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (2005)
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Justice For All (2006)
- Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials and Tribulations (2007)
- Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney (2007)
- Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective (2010)
- Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (2012)
- Dai Gyakuten Saiban: Naruhodō Ryūnosuke no Bōken (2015)