Thank you for participating in Court Records' Original Character contest, 2012!

The contest is over and the results are in!

Thank you for participating and congratulations to our winners!  You can still see all the entries below.

Fanart | Sprites | Fanfiction

If you missed out this year, don't worry - this is an annual contest, and we hope to see you for OC '13!

The Ace Attorney series owes much of its success to its cast of colorful, unique characters.  But do YOU have what it takes to pit your own creativity against Takumi and his team?  Court Records wants to find out!

This contest was created to give everyone a chance to show off their Ace Attorney original characters, in the form of either a fanart, a fanfiction, or a custom made sprite. 

You can read the rules below, but if you want to get an even better idea of what the OC contest is about, be sure to check out our archive of past entries.
(For OC '12 we pushed back the dates, but for OC '13 they're going back to the original June time schedule)




All entries must be received by midnight, June 1st (US Eastern Standard time).  The Judges will weed through the entries to make sure they all fit the requirements, and then open voting will begin June 7th and continue for the next 10 days.  If all goes smoothly, winners should be announced June 20th.
Eligibility:  Everyone is eligible.  Court Records does not discount anyone based on their age or location.  However, you MUST be willing to disclose your address to Croik in the event that you win.  (via secure email, of course).  Otherwise, how can I send you your prize?  Only the winners will be asked for this information.

If you have an original character but are not willing to accept a prize, this is not for you.  Please submit your original works to the Forum.
Requirements: The contest will be split into three divisions: Fanart, Fanfiction, and Sprites.  Entries in different divisions will not be judged against each other.  Each division has its own set of requirements, so make sure you read up (scroll to the bottom).
Restrictions: This is an Ace Attorney contest, and as such your character must somehow fit into the context of a court of law.  Examples: defense attorney, prosecutor, judge, detective, witness.  If the judges aren't convinced that your character has a close enough relationship to Ace Attorney (through playing one of the aforementioned roles or being somehow connected to a canon character) it may be disqualified.

You are not allowed to submit different incarnations of canon characters (if you had invented "Hobohodo" he would not be eligible).

Each participant is allowed ONE character entry.  If you submit a sprite, you cannot also submit a fanart.  Choose wisely!  You can also not submit a character that you have submitted to the OC Contest previously, even if it was in a different category.

If you and your friend have created characters in the same canon and wish to enter, you can NOT use each other's characters in your entry.  It's okay if you mention other OCs in the description portion, but they cannot appear in your art or fic (the reason for this being, it's kind of like letting your friend break the "only two pieces of art per entry" rule if that character appears for a third time in your art, etc).

There can only be one grand prize winner in each category, and each winner will only get one prize.  Do not submit joint entries.  Do not hire someone to do your entry for you.

If you are caught submitting an entry you did not create, or using a character you did not create (such as spriting a character from a different game) you will be disqualified and banned from all future CR contests.  We do not take plagiarism lightly.

It IS okay if you have posted your character elsewhere before participating in this contest.
Appropriateness: Because this contest will have open voting among fans, all entries should not feature any excessive violence, nudity, or graphic sexual content.  Keep it at a PG-13 rating or lower, please.


Judging will be handled in two ways: a panel of judges for each division, and also an open poll on the site.

Three judges will be chosen for each of the three divisions (thus, 9 judges).  As the entries come in, they will be passed between the judges (and myself) to make sure they fit the requirements of the contest.  The judges will score each entry, and once all the scores are tabulated, 15 entries from each category will be selected (depending on entries submitted).

Once the finalists have been picked, a poll will be created on the site for everyone to vote on.  It will be open for roughly 10 days.

Once the popular votes have been tallied, the judges will cast their votes as well.  The reason for this is to help counterbalance "friend-voting" in the open poll.  We will also be keeping up a vigil for improper promotion, which will be better explained when the poll goes up.

Unless something comes up, winners will be announced June 20th.

Entries will be judged on:

Originality.  Is the entry unique?
Continuity:  Does it seem like a character that could actually fit in the Ace Attorney universe?
Execution:  Is the work well made and technically impressive?

Remember that the AA universe is very diverse, but don't go overboard in the strange department.


As prizes this year we have three copies of the Official Kenji Complete guide!  This book is in Japanese only but it's full of great art and a must have for any collection.

What the prizes will be next year are anyone's guess...


Now that you've read the rules, here's how to enter:

Fill out the following application and submit it to courtrecord @ gmail dot com.  Make sure you have "Contest" as the first thing in the subject line, or I may shuffle it to the wrong place.

Entrant's Name:
Entrant's Website/CR Thread: (optional)
Character's Name:
Brief Physical Description:
Brief Personality Description:
Connection to canon characters (if applicable):
Brief Background:

Be sure to provide enough detail that your voters will be able to get a good sense of what makes your character unique, especially the details that won't necessarily show in your work.  This contest is first and foremost about creating imaginative characters.

Attach your fanwork to your entry in your email.  The bio can be in the body of the email or an attachment.  Please do not send me Deviantart links.  Please label the file with the name of your OC, just to make it a little easier on me.

Make sure you've read all the rules and division requirements before submitting your entry, or you may be disqualified and unable to re-submit!


As I know how difficult it can be to show the full range of a character in just one piece of fanart, entrants to the fanart division are allowed to submit two separate pieces, if they wish.  Your fanart may be a simple character design or depict a scene.  It may have writing on it and feature other canon characters, as long as your character is the focus.  You can even do a collection of different facial expressions, as might appear in an artbook.

Your fanart must be a polished work.  Any medium is fine, but do NOT submit a scan of a pencil drawing scribbled on line paper you did in your math class.

Your fanart may not depict graphic violence, nudity, or sexual content.  PG-13 is the rule of thumb.

Comics are not eligible.  Do not split your fanart into panels.

Fanart may NOT be animated. 

There is no size limit for fanart.  If you like, you can also submit a thumbnail that you would like me to use for your entry, which should be no larger than 200x200 pixels.  I recommend that you do this because I am not always artistic in making thumbnails.


Entrants to the fanfiction division are allowed to submit one piece.  It must be complete and it must be at least 1,000 words and no more than 40,000.  Multi-chapter stories are welcome, but do not use that as an excuse to slap two separate fics together.  Whether you add canon characters is up to you but it must be connected to the Ace Attorney universe to be eligible.

If your fic is multi-chapter or especially long, I may make a note when it's posted which chapter the character appears in.  Keep in mind not everyone will have or take the time to read through very long fics, so be precise about your editing.

Make sure your story is properly formatted and has been proof-read before submitting it.

Your fanfiction may be of any genre as long as it does not depict graphic violence, nudity, or sexual content.  PG-13 is the rule of thumb.


If your entry is animated, it must go the sprite category.  Entrants to the sprite category may submit one or all of the following:

A sprite sheet of their character
A single sprite placed on one of the game's backgrounds (text optional)
A single or collection of animated gifs

Entries can be in .png, .bmp or .gif (.jpg are also okay but I do not recommend saving sprites that way).  We are NOT allowing Flash based entries this year. 

Sprites can be hand drawn using a graphics program or created using parts from existing sprites (please disclose which sprites you used in your entry).  However, if you choose to piece together existing sprites, you must use at least three different sprites to do so OR combine two sprites with some extra degree of editing (so that it looks enough like someone else).  Here's a handy chart to demonstrate:

Likewise, straight recolors are not acceptable.

If your sprite falls into the "C&P + Recolor" category, it is acceptable, but without some extra edits it stands a greater chance of being cut out of the finalists.  Of course, the skill of your C&P will also play a part (a very well done sprite made of only 2 characters will be placed higher than 5 characters slapped poorly together).

Do not try to piece together sprites and pass it off as being from scratch.  I am VERY familiar with these sprites by now, and I will catch and disqualify you.

If you use sprites from other games in your splicing, you are also required to disclose which ones.  Please keep in mind that part of the continuity score given by the judges includes whether or not the sprite looks like it could pop right into a PW game, so do attempt to keep the PW style.  This includes the size of your sprite.  The DS screen is 256x192 pixels.  If your sprite exceeds that it will not be disqualified, but we are looking for Ace Attorney style sprites above all else.

Your sprites may not depict graphic violence, nudity, or graphic sexual content.  PG-13 is the rule of thumb.

Sprite comics are not eligible.

Like in the fanart category, if you are submitting only a sheet, you are allowed to send in a thumbnail or specify which line of sprites you would like me to use. 

*As an aside, submitting your entry to this contest will be seen as consent for us to add it to the OC Archive, or possibly use to promote the contest in future years.  If you're not comfortable with this please let us know when you submit your entry.

Good luck everyone!

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, direct them to courtrecord @ gmail dot com