Danganronpa S is What Danganronpa V3 Warned Us About
Danganronpa: Ultimate Summer Camp is a fun and mindless spin-off from Spike Chunsoft’s murder mystery visual novel series. Some exciting writings surround the various “what if” scenarios. However, in the larger context of Danganronpa, I can’t find many positive readings about why a series that holds itself to a higher level of narrative integrity than most other video games has ever released a game similar to it.
Danganronpa is a noncanonical extension of a minigame in Danganronpa. It uses much of the series iconography to Frankenstein. This scenario allows the four main games ( Danganronpa, Danganronpa 2, Goodbye Despair and Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls) to live everyday life on the beach without the killing game. Hope’s Peak Academy students are the only ones who are participating in the Talent Development Camp. The Neo World Program is a virtual reality that projects the image and feel of Jabberwock Island. Monokuma, the series’ antagonist, corrupts everything and floods Jabberwock’s beaches with monsters created in the image of the animatronic bear. The virtual island is home to these children, who use their time to develop their talents and fight Monokuma’s mad minions.
Any long-time fan will be familiar with all the proper nouns. Danganronpa S is built upon the foundation of the franchise’s lore, but it’s not using these concepts to facilitate its usual teen-murder-mystery-death match synonymous with Monokuma’s appearance. Hope’s Peak Academy students instead go to the Neo World Program, a social sim that is mostly chilled and spread across a board game, just like it was in Danganronpa V3’s initial iteration.
So V3’s has done this already, so what is Danganronpa SS? You’ll find more of the same in this V3 version, but with some additional bells and whistles that you won’t get in the version. There’s plenty to do if that’s your thing. The social elements allow characters to interact with each other in an entertaining and sometimes great way. I had a lot of fun playing the character who is my favourite in the series. The man behind Monokuma and their reflections truly moved me on their ideology in this noncanonical space. Danganronpa s is a great place to start if you are a long-time fan looking for more characters.
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Danganronpa ddoesn’tmake a lot of moves for fanservice. The series has been openly hostile to this idea — all in the name to stay true to its story. This franchise, in the service of its story, released a puzzle shooter anime to conclude HHope’sPPeak’ssaga. However, it was opposed by a fandom that wanted it to return to its murder mystery roots. This rebellious attitude was extended to an entire game with Danganronpa, returning to the murder mysteries in a separate continuity. Spike Chunsoft created a game once that was a mockery of HHope’sPeak Academy. It pointed fingers at both the creators and the fans who demanded it is continued. It took 30 hours to create the game, a metatextual commentary about fandom, consumerism and art losing its soul in pursuit of satisfaction.
Four years later, I’m holding my Switch and playing a game that feels like the same story, with all its characters being twisted to make more. Even though it must break and bend every piece of its world, there are still more interactions between the characters we love. The stages of the death games have not been turned into another murder mystery. Instead, they are used to fighting monsters with MMonokuma’sfaces. MMonokuma’schildren, Danganronpa HHTML3’sMonokubs are now the guides to everyone on the island. They weave in luck-based mechanics into the board game segments. One character that has existed in many forms throughout the series is having conversations. Every sprite from the four games was dumped into the simulation regardless of whether they were mutually exclusive. These interactions and relationships are all explained in Ultimate Summer CCamp’scontrived reuse of DDanganronpa’sworld. The whole thing is a bit off; IIt’salmost like watching someone create scenarios from scratch with a set of toys.
The bizarre mix of characters, concepts and events becomes more logical when you consider that Danganronpa is the first game (other than the short-lived mobile title released in 2015) to have microtransactions. You can access all the characters in each game at first. However, you can unlock more characters by grinding for in-game currency or paying up. Full disclosure: Although the option to use real money was not available during the review, Spike Chunsoft explained how it works when launches on Switch. You can buy both characters and “ype Cards,” which give certain characters enhanced stats.
Initial impressions were that the unlock rates of the game were fair and that microtransactions wweren’tall that appealing. In-game currency was my first use. I was able to unlock my favourite character, the mastermind, in just a few minutes. I was happy that I ddidn’thave to spend any money to view their social content. After playing for hours, I realized many more characters to unlock through the in-game gacha machine. If I ddidn’tget my favourite character early, I might have thought differently about the time I had already spent and would likely have given in.
You can unlock characters directly, which helps circumvent the exploitative, greedy schemes of games that use the gacha system. However, if you ddon’tcare about playing particular characters but want to collect all Danganronpa A has to give, you will need to do more grinding. This makes it more attractive to spend real-world cash. Although iit’snot the worst example of microtransactions, it comes from a series that once made a mockery of the idea. It just feels wrong.