Danganronpa

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Danganronpa
Danganronpa12reload.jpg
Promotional artwork for Danganronpa 1-2 Reload, featuring characters from both Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc and Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair
GenresVisual novel, graphic adventure game
DevelopersSpike Chunsoft
Publishers
  • JP Spike Chunsoft
ArtistsRui Komatsuzaki
WritersKazutaka Kodaka
ComposersMasafumi Takada
PlatformsPlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, Android, iOS
Platform of originPlayStation Portable
Year of inception2010
First releaseDanganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc
November 25, 2010
Latest releaseDanganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair
July 26, 2012
Official websitehttp://danganronpa.com
 
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Danganronpa
Danganronpa12reload.jpg
Promotional artwork for Danganronpa 1-2 Reload, featuring characters from both Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc and Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair
GenresVisual novel, graphic adventure game
DevelopersSpike Chunsoft
Publishers
  • JP Spike Chunsoft
ArtistsRui Komatsuzaki
WritersKazutaka Kodaka
ComposersMasafumi Takada
PlatformsPlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, Android, iOS
Platform of originPlayStation Portable
Year of inception2010
First releaseDanganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc
November 25, 2010
Latest releaseDanganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair
July 26, 2012
Official websitehttp://danganronpa.com

Danganronpa (ダンガンロンパ?) is a Japanese video game franchise created and developed by Spike Chunsoft (formerly Spike) for the PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, iOS, and Android. The series currently consists of three titles; two visual novel games, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc and Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair, and an upcoming third-person adventure spin-off, Zettai Zetsubō Shōjo: Danganronpa AnotherEpisode, as well as various manga, novel, and anime adaptations. The series' name is compounded from the Japanese words for "bullet" (弾丸 dangan?) and "refutation" (論破 ronpa?).

Premise[edit]

The series revolves around the elite high school, Hope's Peak Academy (希望ヶ峰学園 Kibōgamine Gakuen?), which, every year, selects several "Ultimate" students (超高校級 chō-kōkō-kyū?, lit. Super High School Level), talented high school students who are in the top of their field, along with one average "Ultimate Lucky Student" who is chosen by lottery.

In Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc, Makoto Naegi, an average student selected to join Hope's Peak Academy, arrives at the school only to lose consciousness and later find himself trapped inside the school, along with fourteen other students. There, a sadistic remote-controlled teddy bear by the name of Monokuma announces that the students will be forced to live in the school forever, offering only one way to graduate: murder another student and get away with it. When a crime scene is discovered, a "class trial" (学級裁判 gakyū saiban?), in which the remaining students must discuss amongst themselves who the murderer is. If they can successfully figure who murdered the victim, the culprit alone will be executed. However, if they guess incorrectly, the culprit will be able to leave the school and everyone else will be executed.

The sequel, Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair, has a similar premise, this time taking place on a tropical island known as Jabberwock (ジャバウォック島 Jabawokku-tō?). Hajime Hinata, a student who has no memory of his Ultimate talent, along with fifteen other students, are taken there by a rabbit named Usami, who states it to be a field trip to help the classmates make friends with each other. However, Monokuma interferes yet again, turning it into yet another killing game.

Zettai Zetsubō Shōjo: Danganronpa AnotherEpisode, which takes place between the events of the first two games, follows Makoto's younger sister, Komaru Naegi, as she treks through a city ruled by Monokuma's influence.

Gameplay[edit]

Gameplay in the main Danganronpa games are split into two main styles: School Life and Class Trial. School Life follows a standard visual novel style as players explore the school grounds, converse with characters and move the story forward. During designated 'Free Time' sections, players can choose to interact with a character of their choice, learning more about them and earning new skills that can help them in the Class Trial. School Life is divided up into two sections; Daily Life, where the story simply progresses, and Deadly Life, where players must search for evidence relating to a murder.

The Class Trial is the main gameplay mode of the series, in which students discuss amongst themselves who the culprit is. This involves various different types of mini-game, the most common of which is the Nonstop Debate. Here, characters will automatically discuss the case, and it is up to the player to spot contradictions in their statements and shoot them using "Truth Bullets" containing the corresponding evidence. Other gameplay types include shooting letters to spell out a clue, using rhythmic button presses to argue against a specific character, and constructing a comic strip depicting the events of a murder.

Zettai Zetsubō Shōjo: Danganronpa AnotherEpisode, unlike the main games, is a third-person adventure in which the protagonist, Komaru, uses a megaphone to issue commands to Monokuma robots.

Development[edit]

The first game in the series, titled Danganronpa: Kibō no Gakuen to Zetsubō no Kōkōsei, was produced by Yoshinori Terasawa, who was inspired by movies such as Saw and Cube. The game uses a distinct "pop art" style featuring fluorescent pink blood, which was designed to lessen the grotesqueness and age-rating of the game. The game's scenario was written by Kazutaka Kodaka, with character designs by Rui Komatsuzaki. In February 2014, Kodaka revealed on his Twitter account that the story of Danganronpa was inspired by the Sega Dreamcast game Illbleed, as he loved how "crazy" it was.[1] The game was originally conceived as a basic visual novel but, as visual novels were growing less popular, new gameplay elements were added to make it stand out.[2] The game was originally released on PlayStation Portable in Japan on November 25, 2010, and was later ported to iOS and Android devices on August 20, 2012. Prior to the game's release, the company released various promotional material, including a playable demo and trailers, which depicted a different victim from the final game.[3] The fan translation group Project Zetsubou released an unofficial English translation patch for the PlayStation Portable version of the game on June 23, 2013.[4] Two smartphone applications, Danganronpa: Monokuma no Gyakushū (ダンガンロンパ モノクマの逆襲?, lit. Danganronpa: Monokuma Strikes Back) and Alter Ego (アルターエゴ Arutāego?), were released for Android devices on April 27, 2012 and iOS devices on May 23, 2012.[5] A sequel, Super Danganronpa 2: Sayonara Zetsubō Gakuen, was released for PSP in Japan on July 26, 2012, featuring various gameplay additions.

On October 10, 2013, Spike Chunsoft released Danganronpa 1・2 Reload (ダンガンロンパ1・2 Reload?), a compilation of the first two games, for the PlayStation Vita. Along with higher resolution graphics and touch-screen controls, the compilation added an additional 'School Mode' to the first game, based on the second game's 'Island Mode'. On July 6, 2013, NIS America announced they would be releasing the Vita version of the first game in English under the name Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc, featuring both English and Japanese audio.[6] This version was released in North America on February 11, 2014, and in Europe and Australia on February 14, 2014. On February 13, 2014, NIS America announced it would be releasing the Vita version of the second game, titled Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair, in North America and Europe in Fall 2014.[7]

On September 9, 2013, Spike Chunsoft announced during a Sony Computer Entertainment Japan conference that a spin-off title of the series, Zettai Zetsubō Shōjo: Danganronpa AnotherEpisode, is currently in development for the Vita for release in 2014.[8] The teaser trailer for the game ended with the words "and also... 3", hinting at a third game in the main series. Terasawa has stated "We are absolutely thinking about making a third Danganronpa, but we haven’t decided on anything specific just yet."[9]

Other media[edit]

Manga[edit]

The following manga series have been produced based on the games.

Novels[edit]

A spin-off novel based on the game written by Tsuyoshi Kodakazu and illustrated by Rui Komatsuzaki, titled Danganronpa/Zero (ダンガンロンパ/ゼロ?), was released in two volumes between September 15, 2011 and October 13, 2011.[10] Another novel series written by Takekuni Kitayama and illustrated by Komatsuzaki, titled Danganronpa Kirigiri (ダンガンロンパ霧切?), began release from September 13, 2013.[11] A mini light novel written by Ryogo Narita, titled Danganronpa IF: Kibō no Dasshutsusōchi to Zetsubō no Zan'nen Musō (ダンガンロンパIF 希望の脱出装置と絶望の残念無双 Danganronpa IF: The Escape Switch of Hope and the Unfortunate Warriors of Despair?), is unlockable in Danganronpa 2 after clearing the game once. The story tells of an alternate universe in which Makoto manages to find an alleged escape switch.

Anime[edit]

In December 2012, Kadokawa Shoten's Newtype magazine announced that there would be an anime television series adaptation of the first game, titled Danganronpa: The Animation, produced by Lerche and directed by Seiji Kishi.[12] The series aired between July 4, 2013 and September 26, 2013 and was simulcast by Funimation. The final Blu-ray/DVD volume, to be released on February 26, 2014, features an extended final episode.[13]

Music[edit]

The original soundtracks for both the games and the anime are composed by Masafumi Takada. The soundtrack for Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc was released in Japan by Sound Prestige Records on February 14, 2011, with the ending theme, "Saisei -rebuild-" (再生 -rebuild- Playback -rebuild-?), performed by Megumi Ogata, which is also used as the anime's final ending theme. The soundtrack for Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair was released on August 31, 2012. The soundtrack for Danganronpa: The Animation was released by Geneon Universal Entertainment on August 28, 2013. The opening theme for the anime series was "Never Say Never", performed by TKDz2b with Jas Mace, Marchitect and Tribeca, the single of which was included with the first Blu-ray/DVD volume of the anime released on August 28, 2013. The ending theme is "Zetsubōsei: Hero Chiryōyaku" (絶望性:ヒーロー治療薬 Despairity: A Hero's Treatment?) by Suzumu feat. Soraru, the single of which was released on September 4, 2013. There have also been drama CDs, as well as bonus soundtracks included with limited edition releases of the games.

Appearances in other games[edit]

Monokuma appears in some downloadable content for Spike Chunsoft's role-playing game, Conception II: Children of the Seven Stars.[14] Costumes of Monokuma and Monomi also appear in the Japanese PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita versions of Terraria, which are published by Spike Chunsoft in that region.[15] Another Spike game developed for the PlayStation Portable, Gachitora: The Roughneck Teacher in High School, allows the player to wear a Monokuma costume if a Danganronpa save file is present upon playing Gachitora.[16] Downloadable outfits based on Monokuma and Monomi will also appear in the Super Sonico game, Motto! SoniComi.[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://twitter.com/kazkodaka/status/437957421713981440
  2. ^ http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/211205/Dangan_Ronpa_Death_stress_and_standing_out_from_the_crowd.php
  3. ^ http://kotaku.com/pulling-off-one-of-gamings-biggest-cons-1354961344
  4. ^ "[Release] Danganronpa English Translation v1.0 | Project Zetsubou". Danganronpa.wordpress.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  5. ^ "モノクマの逆襲 for ダンガンロンパ|人気ゲーム「ダンガンロンパ」のミニゲーム集!スマフォアプリ版が待ち遠しくなる!|アプリゲット". Appget.com. 2012-05-03. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  6. ^ By Ishaan . July 6, 2013 . 4:51pm (2013-07-06). "Danganronpa And Demon Gaze Coming To North America". Siliconera.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  7. ^ http://nisamerica.com/pressreleases/Dangan2_announce_20140213.pdf
  8. ^ http://gematsu.com/2013/09/danganronpa-another-episode-announced-for-ps-vita
  9. ^ http://www.siliconera.com/2014/02/25/danganronpa-team-thinking-making-danganronpa-3/
  10. ^ "Amazon.co.jp: ダンガンロンパ/ゼロ(上) (星海社FICTIONS): 小高 和剛, 小松崎 類: 本". Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  11. ^ "Amazon.co.jp: ダンガンロンパ霧切 1 (星海社FICTIONS): 北山 猛邦, 小松崎 類: 本". Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved 2013-11-01. 
  12. ^ "Persona 4's Kishi Directs Danganronpa Game's TV Anime". Anime News Network. Dec 7, 2012. Retrieved Dec 16, 2012. 
  13. ^ http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2014-01-16/danganronpa-blu-ray/dvd-expands-finale-by-14-minutes
  14. ^ By Sunjun . July 25, 2013 . 11:50am (2013-07-25). "Danganronpa's Monobear Is Coming To Conception II As DLC". Siliconera. Retrieved 2013-08-14. 
  15. ^ Terraria Japanese trailer via Spike Chunsoft on YouTube
  16. ^ http://www.siliconera.com/2011/04/08/gachitora-lets-you-dress-up-as-mono-bear-from-danganronpa/
  17. ^ "SoniComi Game Offers Danganronpa Costumes". Anime News Network. 2014-02-10. Retrieved 2014-02-14. 

External links[edit]