Super Dangan Ronpa 2: Goodbye Despair (スーパーダンガンロンパ2 さよなら絶望学園)

Title: スーパーダンガンロンパ2 さよなら絶望学園
Company: Spike Chunsoft, NIS America
Release Date: September 2, 2014
Platform: PS Vita
Official Site: http://www.danganronpa.com/2/
Walkthrough: http://www.gamefaqs.com/vita/763296-danganronpa-2-goodbye-despair/faqs/70277 or http://psnprofiles.com/guide/2268-Danganronpa-2-Goodbye-Despair-Trophy-Guide
Synopsis:
Hajime Hinata and fifteen other students of Hope’s Peak Academy are taken into a tropical island by their teacher Usami for a school trip. However, Monokuma appears again turning the harmless school trip into another killing game.

I love Dangan Ronpa. I love the mystery, its quirky characters, and all the bizarre things in it. Goodbye Despair retains all the things I love from the first game (even Monokuma <3) if not a lot harsher and brutal than the first. If you haven’t played the first game, go start with that before GD or you’ll be missing a lot of references.

Plot

Under the guise of a school trip, their teacher Usami tells the 16 students that they are to spend their days in a tropical island and collect Hope Fragments. It is only when they collect all the fragments that they will be able to graduate. Everything is fine and dandy, that is, until the arrival of a certain monobear who announces that he’s changing the rules. Instead of collecting Hope Fragments, the only way to graduate is for the students to murder someone and not get caught. Thus the heart-throbbing killing school trip begins!

Characters

Hajime Hinata

I love Hinata’s name. It has “beginning”, “sun, and “day” in it (lol rough translation there). His name sounds really hopeful. Hinata doesn’t remember what his Ultimate is. Sounds like Kirigiri right? Well, I even thought that maybe, maybe, there would be another Ultimate Detective this time. But having the same Ultimate is boring and uncreative.

Unlike Makoto, Hinata is a reliable and snarky character. I immediately liked his cynicism and bluntness on things. He’s level-headed throughout the whole ordeal even when Nagito reveals who he really is.  Also, while interacting with the characters in the Dangan Island, he doesn’t turn into a yes-man. He agrees or disagrees with them and tells them his honest thoughts.

Komaeda Nagito

This seemingly harmless young man here is in fact the most dangerous of them. Not dangerous in a sense that he’d kill anyone in a heartbeat, but more like, the danger lies in his thought processes. You’d never be able to guess what is really going on inside his mind and I love him for that. :3 While he’s usually laid-back, he’ll never think twice in shooting you down during Class Trials. He’s sharp, perceptive, and manipulative. A wolf in sheep’s clothing if I may say.

Nanami Chiaki

Her name, her demeanor, and her box art reminds me of a certain someone from the first game. :>

If you show her to me before I started playing DR, I’d tell you that she won’t be an important character. Guess not. Chiaki is like Kirigiri to Makoto, though less serious. She appears air-headed, always thinking about games and sleeping basically anywhere at any given moment.

Sonia Nevermind

Why Nevermind? I’d always think of Sonia when I hear that word now.

Sonia is a big J-drama fangirl. She can tell you any drama even the ones shown in the early years. Under that hime-feel, she is also fascinated with serial killers and horror movies. Yep, very princess-like.

Nidai Nekomaru

A.K.A THE BULGING CROTCH OR THE ULTIMATE CROTCH LOL

I’m sorry I can’t help it. That’s the first thing I’ve noticed when I saw his character pfft. I was like “OMG seriously?? O.O” or was it *O*? Ahaha. Okay, enough with Nekomaru’s crotch www.

The guy’s intimidating – if he’s not talking about taking shit www.

Owari Akane

I’ve been thinking about this for a while, why is she called the Ultimate Gymnast when all she ever does in the game is wanting to be in a brawl? She’s like a combination of Asahina and Sakura, leaning more to the latter.

Souda Kazuichi

For a while, I’m like “Dude what the hell is wrong with you” whenever he doubts everyone especially Hajime. I mean, you really should be wary of the people around you most especially with Monokuma poisoning your minds and saying things about a traitor. But it’s a lot different with Kazuichi. His conversation with Hinata in Dangan Island (or during Free Time) sheds some light about his issues. He’s easily misunderstood more than Gundham I think.

Tanaka Gundham

From Nevermind to Gundham. www I always, always think of the mobile suits whenever I read his name.

Gundham’s weird, like out of this world weird (he’s probably happy to hear that). He speaks in cryptic words and roundabout manner. I applaud Hinata for being able to decipher what he says. I still don’t quite understand his “sacrifice” though…

Ibuki Mioda

I love Ibuki’s character design! It’s funky and edgy, very Ibuki-like. At first, I thought she would be dark and emo but she’s so outgoing and fun-loving.

Saionji Hiyoko

While it says there that Hiyoko’s the Ultimate Traditional Dancer, I can think of other Ultimate titles that suits her more. She could be the Ultimate Bad-mouth, Ultimate Brat, Ultimate Bad Personality and all the other bad adjectives that you could think of.

To be fair, once you’ve gained her side, she is loyal and will defend you at any cost. She can be quite clingy, though.

Hanamura Teruteru

The Ultimate Pervert (he could have been Kazuichi’s buddy). He and Ibuki can get along too, for going after both sides. xD

Kuzuryuu Fuyuhiko

DR is like a coming-of-age story for jerks like Kuzuryuu (Togami too). I like how the killings change them. Instead of falling into deeper despair, they find hope and come in terms with their shortcomings.

Pekoyama Peko

How she turns out surprises me. It’s unthinkable. But then again, I don’t really know much about her that time so it doesn’t make sense to me. Still what happened to her is sad.

Koizumi Mahiru

As what the Youtuber I follow said, Mahiru’s the biggest feminist I’ve ever encountered in a game before. She never goes easy with the guys.

Tsumiki Mikan

Mikan has so many issues I don’t know where to start. She is the very example of the quote, “The slaves of today will be the tyrants of tomorrow”.

Togami Byakuya

My my Togami. You’ve mellowed since the last time I’ve seen you. Are you really the Togami Byakuya? *snickers*

Monomi/Usami

Usami/Monomi is the teacher-slash-Monokuma’s-little-sister. She is a poor thing all throughout the game, being bullied by everyone else. She’s not exactly my favorite character but I think she deserves more appreciation.

I didn’t include Monokuma because you’re most likely familiar with him by now (if you’ve played the first game). I want to see how these characters look like during The Tragedy, how they modified their bodies and what they did for inducing despair to humanity. This bunch is a lot crueler than the first which is implied in the 2nd murder. (I freaked out when I saw that pic okay.)

System

Same as its predecessor. The characters’s life in-game is divided into three: Daily Life, Deadly Life, and Class Trial.

Daily Life

This is where Hinata spends his time exploring the island and his Free Time. Free Time is where you talk to other characters, give presents, and collect Hope Fragments.

Deadly Life

In this phase, a murder has occurred. The rest of the surviving characters investigate and find out the culprit.

Class Trial

The remaining characters will have a trial and prove who killed victim. This is the most exciting part because not only you will be uncovering the secrets of the murder, the characters also reveal interesting things during this time.

I must say, that while I love Class Trial, I hate Hangman’s Gambit and Logic Drive. Well, Logic Drive is interesting at first but it gets crazy hard later on.

Pet System

So this time you can now raise a pet. There are six types of pet you can raise: Shitimi, Monomi, Monokuma, Gorimi, Pigmi, and Snakemi. The growth of your pet depends the number of steps Hinata takes. So instead of jumping from place to place, you’d have to walk around if you want to raise your pet.

To raise each type, you’d have to meet a certain number of Hope and Despair meter. The guides above provide a list of the requirements for each pet. Once you’ve fully raised a pet, it will give you presents and coins as a parting gift.

Extras

Magical Girl Usami

In this mini-game, you control Monomi as she beats the Monobeasts. You’d have to finish at least Chapter 1 for this mini-game to unlock. Mind you, grinding through this gains you a trophy. I’m not that of a masochist to do that though. It’s already tiring enough to finish all the levels.

Dangan Island

This is like the School Mode in Trigger Happy Havoc. There’s no killing here, just the characters working through different quests. This is also the perfect time to get all the Hope Fragments. Getting these fragments means 1) You’d get closer and form a bond to your classmates, and 2) You’d have something to exchange if you want to get a certain skill.

If you manage to complete a mission, Monomi will reward you with tickets that you can use to spend time with whoever you chooses. Spending time with a certain character allows you to get an ending with him or her. It’s like a dating sim (sometimes it feels like Hinata’s building his harem www). This can get repetitive though. I suggest doing this in between collecting fragments to avoid boredom. You can get 5 routes max in a single playthrough.

Dangan Ronpa IF

IF is a mini novel that takes place during the School Life of Mutual Killing which features Junko’s sister, Mukuro Ikusaba. It’s actually nice to see her and for her to have her own alternative storyline since we don’t know much about Mukuro other than her being  a former member of Fenrir and Junko’s older twin.

 

Wrapping Up!

Dangan Ronpa Goodbye Despair does not disappoint. It retains all the things that made the first game appealing. If you have enjoyed Trigger Happy Havoc, you’ll most likely enjoy this too. If you haven’t played THH, GO PLAY IT ASAP.

Your thoughts?

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