Greetings, doods! Chris King from NISA here, dropping by to let you know that the long awaited murder-mystery adventure game, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc, will be hitting Europe next week on 14th February, exclusively on PlayStation Vita! It will also be available the following week on PSN.
But wait dood, there’s more! I also have an exclusive developer interview with Yoshinori Terasawa, series producer at Spike Chunsoft, the masterminds behind the awesome game. Read below as they unveil their reasoning behind many of the awesome features and mechanics of Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc!
For those unfamiliar with the series, could you briefly explain what Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is all about?
It’s a “closed circle mystery” where the country’s best and brightest high schoolers have been trapped within their high school and forced to participate in a grisly killing game. It’s also a type of logical puzzle game that also features a strong action element, which has led to the creation of an all-new game genre we like to call “High-Speed Logic Action.”
I think players won’t be able to hide their surprise at some of the twists and turns the story will take, thanks to the tapestry of unique characters and story beats. On top of that, the unique 2.5D motion graphics lead to an art style we like to call “psycho pop,” which creates a totally unique view of the world.
Who is that murderous looking bear and why the heck has he trapped those students? Is he my friend?
You’ll just have to play and find out for yourself. Puhuhu…
How does the game progress, and what is the gameplay like?
As you progress through each chapter, eventually a murder will take place. At that point you’ll begin your investigation. Once a certain amount of in-game time passes, you’ll shift into the class trial part of the game. Here you’ll engage in discussions and arguments with the other characters, using a variety of reasoning and gameplay elements (for example, the Nonstop Debate or the Bullet Time Battle).
What makes this game different from other mystery adventure titles?
The biggest difference is what I mentioned earlier – the game systems that combine logic and action. There’s also the overall presentation, which is overflowing with a sense of speed and argumentative energy. On the flipside, that speed also creates a feeling of nervousness and impatience born from the dread of what might happen if you lose the debate. Put all this together and you get a good idea of what kind of difficulties this game will pose.
Those trial scenes look horrifically intense. Could you go into detail about the trial system?
During the trial, each character’s testimony will flow from one person to another. It’s up to you to find the inconsistencies within that flow, then hit them with whatever information you have that proves the contradiction. To do this, you’ll have to position your reticle, take aim, and literally fire your responses at them. If you miss your mark, or get distracted by meaningless dialogue flowing in and out, you risk losing the trial.
What are some of the changes that were made from the original Danganronpa released on the PSP in 2010?
First and foremost, we’ve increased the resolution. We’ve also gone over the art to spruce it up, and make the dialogue visually sharper. We’ve also been able to add touch controls, making the game more intuitive to play and navigate. The biggest addition, though, is the all-new School Mode, which will allow you to interact with your fellow classmates without the deadly killing game looming over you.
For those fans in the West who already know a lot about the game’s story through gameplay videos and online discussion, what are the best reasons for them to pick up this Vita version?
The best reasons are what I just mentioned – the revamped graphics and the new School Mode. Also, for those who have watched the anime, there are all kinds of events in the game that aren’t touched on in the show.
Other than that, let me just say that “Danganronpa” is much more enjoyable if you don’t know anything about it going in. Exploring and interacting with the characters and world will let you engage with them in a way you simply can’t by watching videos. So if you haven’t read anything about the story yet, don’t!
I was immediately drawn in by the unique animations and character designs. What was your inspiration to create such a unique art style?
The main goal was to create something with impact, that would make people sit up and pay attention – the kind of game nobody had ever seen before, with its own sense of style and “coolness.” After seeing what Mr. Komatsuzaki, the character designer, came up with, I thought fans would be very love-it-or-hate-it about them. But for those who do like them, they’re very easy to get absorbed in.
Which character was the most fun to design and/or write? Is there a favorite amongst the team?
As I mentioned, Mr. Komatsuzaki was the character designer, and Mr. Kodaka was the writer, and they basically just created everything as they saw fit. I can say that it seemed like Monokuma was designed in no time flat. Pretty much the only request I made was regarding the character Aoi’s butt (laughs).
Are there any plans for more new games and stories in the Danganronpa universe?
Right now, we’re focused on “Zettai Zetsubou Shojo (Absolutely Despairing Girl – Danganronpa Another Episode),” which is a spin-off game that’s currently in development. We haven’t finalized anything in terms of an overseas release, but if “Danganronpa” is successful, that’s definitely something we’d like to see.
And there you have it! Thanks for stopping by, I hope you enjoyed the read! Until next time, doods!
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