An eclectic bunch, aren’t they?
In case you guys weren’t aware, the demo for the new Danganronpa V3 game is now available for free on Steam, Playstation 4, and PS Vita. I wasn’t planning on playing it because I wanted to go into that thing blind, but apparently A) the demo is custom-made so that it spoils nothing but the characters’ personalities B) you get some extra stuff if you play the game with a completed demo save file. So I spent a few hours on it, and while I have no plans to do a Let’s Play or whatnot of the actual game, I feel like it’s something I should write about given how much Danganronpa defines my online personality these days. And in preparation for that, I’m going to write about the sixteen new characters of this game and what my opinions of them based on the demo. After all, one of my favorite things about Danganronpa is the cast and how they’re anime parodies whilst still being somewhat grounded in reality, so it makes sense I’d want to give them attention.
Just so you know, I’m not going to talk about the events of the demo itself. There’s not really much to say about it anyways other than “obvious tutorial that’s not going to be in the actual game”. Also, I’m not going to give my opinion on the Monokubs because I don’t know what to think about them so far. We’re just focusing on character right now, because that’s what I prefer.
By the way, I would not recommend playing the demo on Steam, because apparently the Steam cards it gives you MASSIVELY spoils the actual game. Why they programmed it like that, I don’t know, but those are the breaks. Thankfully, I play Danganronpa V3 on PS4 so I didn’t have that problem.
So this is the main protagonist of the new game that I’m going to be controlling, and so far I like her a lot. There’s just something inherently charming about Kaede and how she has to play the role of straight man to her wacky comrades, plus while I obviously relate more to Makoto and Hajime when it comes to the minor dating sim elements, I wouldn’t mind being female and going after some guys in these anime games once in a while as long as said guys are actually cool. Not really a whole lot to say about Kaede at the moment given how the demo constantly treats her as the new protagonist, but I do look forward to playing as her more in the future. Also, her ahoge and the musical notes in her hair are cute.
K1-BO, or Keebo if you want to be literal about it, is basically a parody on all those robot characters that go back to the days of Astro Boy. Like many fans have pointed out, his name literally means “hope”, and ain’t that on the nose? He seems to be fun so far given how emotional he is due to being the product of really advanced AI technology, but he doesn’t really get enough screen time to be anything more than the subject of really bizarre questions regarding how a living robot functions (also, he doesn’t have a rocket punch or other common anime robot functions). From what I can tell, the fanbase does have hopes for him though. I mean just look at his name.
A parody on maid characters in that she’s so focused on being the perfect maid that she tends to overdo it whilst have a completely serious face all throughout. Oh, and her reputation has gotten to the point where the definition of “maid” is really stretched. You could ask her to do insane tasks like kill a certain dictator, and it seems she’ll do it as long as it’s physically possible for her. She’s apparently one of the more intelligent members of this cast, but that may be just due to how straight-faced she is all the time. Finally, there’s a bit of a dangerous girl vibe to her that makes me unable to see her outfit as all that fetish-y, which ironically makes her ten times cooler.
This is the resident “I don’t remember my talent” character of the group, which obviously means when said talent is revealed, it’s going to play a major role in the story. Kaede sees him as a bit creepy, and it’s hard to deny that given how aloof he is about everything. I don’t know what character type in particular he’s supposed to parody, and he doesn’t really have much screen time in the tutorial to begin with. He’s a mystery as far as I’m concerned, and whether or not you find that intriguing depends on personal taste, but I am interested in seeing how Danganronpa handles him in the future at the very least.
The Ultimate Detective in that he solved one case by “accident”, so he’s not nearly as good at the job as Kyoko from the first game. I think he’s the closest to a normal person amongst the males, and Shuichi is obviously meant to parody shonen boy detective tropes. That said, something about him makes me think he’s not going to survive all too long in this game. Maybe it’s because a detective who’s aware of his skills will make it very difficult to create tension in a game that relies heavily on mystery and the player figuring out said mystery for themselves. We all know what happens to capable people in Danganronpa stories, now don’t we?
Do I really need to explain what sort of character gimmicks would belong to the Ultimate Cosplayer? Basically, if you don’t respect the cosplay that you’re wearing, Tsumugi would rather her wear the outfit herself, and will be quite forceful in regards to that as well. Other than that, Tsumugi seems to be the token nice girl of the group (besides Kaede obviously) in that her outside personality is sweet and she doesn’t have much in the way of fighting abilities or believing she’s an alien from outer space. I personally think that sort of character is necessary (even though Kaede sort of fills that role herself), as it’s just dumb when everyone is a badass.
The muscular dude of the group, which means he’s probably going to die sometime in the game because the beefy dudes never survive in the Danganronpa universe. Which is a shame because of all the big people that this series has given us, he is definitely one of the nicest. Unless you insult bugs, in which case he turns into The Incredible Hulk, Gonta is basically a pacifistic dude who speaks in third-person (assumedly this is an English-only thing) and always tries to find the peaceful route. How can I want someone like that to kick the bucket?
Tenko makes me really glad I’m playing as a female protagonist this time, because her gimmick is that she’s a man-hating martial artist who will throw them across the room if they so much as comment on the disgusted faces she makes at them. I’m sure there’s some reason for this, although I’ll probably have to figure it out through optional Free Time Events to discover what that is, but man-haters who react with violence are never funny. At least Mahiru’s distaste of men is due to the high expectations she sets for them. Anyways, when interacting with Kaede, Tenko is tolerable even through her “bashful lesbian” tropes, so hopefully she grows on me over time.
I’ve seen quite a bit of cosplay for this dude at anime conventions, and apparently he’s got a lot of fangirls for being “Little Hitler”, so I had some expectations for Kokichi. As soon as he said this line (which apparently is one of the most memetic lines from this demo), he pretty much solidified himself as a character worth paying attention to. The dude is just a hilarious troll, and I can see why people like him so much. Hopefully he has more fun stuff to give in the actual game.
Someone informed me that Maki is a bit of a base-breaking character, mainly due to her personality. I know there’s a lot more to her than what we see, but I can tell you right now that the game makes it clear she’s not supposed to be the most likable of the bunch. Her ultimate talent is being good with children, but the twist is that she hates children and doesn’t get why they like her so much. Have you guys seen the latest episode of Kakegurui where the idol in the student council absolutely hates her sweaty male fanbase, but puts up with it for a shot at the Academy Awards? Maki isn’t that over-the-top (yet), but she’s clearly not a nice girl, and depending on how that’s executed, I can see that being very intriguing or very annoying.
Of all the characters in the game, this is the one who I have a grasp on the least. He seems to be the creepy-obsessive male of the group with his love for everything beautiful, with his definition of “beautiful” being very warped. Doesn’t exactly help that he looks exactly as he’s dressed too. Other than those style points though, I really don’t have much of an opinion on this guy. He’s definitely a case of wait-and-see.
I don’t know which came first, but Himiko really reminds me of Megumin from Konosuba in terms of design, whilst having a mindset similar to a Little Witch Academia character – except that magic doesn’t actually exist in the Danganronpa universe as far as I know. Not that that’s stopped Himiko from believing she’s an actual mage where cutting someone in half is the equivalent of shooting fire out of your wand. Given the recent Little Witch Academia hype and all, I can see Himiko being a popular character, and her innocence regarding the existence of magic is cute in a fucked-up kind of way. I mean when you start using video game logic to describe something magical, that’s a good sign you’re not actually in the real world.
Angie is also a bit of a fan-favorite from what I’ve been lead to understand, being the resident kooky dark-skinned girl who doesn’t mind being walking fanservice. Unlike Asahina or Akane, she’s not particularly athletic, nor is she all that busty either. She is, however, a religious nut who prays to Atua for every situation that befalls her. I do think she’s cute and funny, but as far as being a stand-out character is concerned, we’ll have to see more. I doubt she’s actually going to die in the actual game, so I’m sure I’ll be seeing plenty of her.
The ultimate tennis pro who has a really deep voice for a guy that’s not even four feet tall. I’m sure I’m not the only one to point out that he shares the same first name as the main character from The Prince of Tennis, and his past where he apparently killed people with his tennis skills brings to mind those hilariously bad “tennis as a weapon” moves that Prince of Tennis often indulged in. Never thought when I first saw this guy that he would turn out to be the cool adult person of the group, but I think that contrast just makes him even more interesting. Wonder if he’ll actually do any tennis in this game? He better not be one of the first to die.
Miu is a bit hit-and-miss as a character in my opinion. Her gimmick is that she curses alot and sexually harasses/insults anyone she talks to even more (making fun of Kaede’s tits, calling men walking dildos), but she can’t take what she dishes out. Basically Junko Enoshima except reworked as a protagonist who invents crazy machines that only please her when they perform tasks whilst sleeping. Sometimes she can be funny, but her schtick is so constant that it gets wearisome more often than not, similar to how most people don’t like Youtubers who use yelling and cursing as humor. Who wants to bet she survives quite a ways into the game?
The Ultimate Astronaut in that he passed the astronaut exam when he was in high school, but obviously hasn’t actually gone to space yet. I think he’s supposed to be the enthusiastic loudmouth of the group given his boisterous attitude, although those characters also tend to be kind of stupid, and so far he hasn’t demonstrated anything that suggests he’s intellectually challenged as of yet (at least no more so than the other characters). Personally, the biggest question for me is how his talent is even going to be relevant to the plot. Obviously astronauts have advanced survival skills and all, but I don’t see the characters approaching a rocket ship anytime soon unless Monokuma decides to use one for his executions again.
Basically, this cast needs more time to grow on me, but I like what I see of all of them so far. They’re all funny to varying degrees, they all have over-the-top self-aware personalities whilst grounding said craziness into something logical, and their interactions during the class trial are pretty damn good. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing more of them next month, and I hope all you Danganronpa fans who voted the series as the #1 most request Honest Game Trailer for Gauntlet month are looking forward to this game as well. Abandon all hope. Enter the despair of Prison School. And recognize the importance of truth and lies, for the end of September is going to be one psycho-cool time.
So to my readers who have played the demo, what do you think of the characters? Who’s your favorite based on what we’ve seen so far? It’s Little Hitler isn’t it? Everyone seems to love Little Hitler.