Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

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Beedlebud
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Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Beedlebud » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:19 pm

Let's round up all the reviews we've seen so far:

Gamesradar: 4/5

With its twisted tale of murder and high school gone wrong, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc weaves a devilishly addictive tale you'll want to see through to the end.


Gaming Trend: 85/100

What makes Danganronpa immensely satisfying is how it consistently toys with your expectations. With excellent writing, well-developed characters, and a story that keeps you guessing, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is a bloody good time. Once I’d picked up my Vita, I didn’t want to put it down until I’d discovered all of Hope’s Peak Academy’s horrifying secrets.


Hardcore Gamer: 4/5

Danganronpa is absolutely worth buying, but only if you’re a gamer who doesn’t mind reading 30 hours worth of dialogue, because this is a visual novel at its most basic level...Still, it’s hard to get too bothered by this as Danganronpa has one hell of a story to tell.


EGM: 9.0/10

Danganronpa’s heavy storyline segments and somber themes won’t be for everyone, but for Vita owners looking for something fresh, stylish, and enthralling to play on their handheld of choice, this is an utterly fascinating game that shouldn’t be missed.


ZTGD- 90/100 (Editor's Choice!)

Clocking in at around twenty hours, there is little reason to play through a second time but as is the case with a great book, once picked up it’ll be difficult to put down and when this abearrant tale has finished bearing it all, you’ll put it down with a smile on your face.


Gamrreview- 8.2/10

Danganronpa isn't perfect, but it is certainly great. The gameplay has its fair share of downtime, with large sections that are simplified pixel hunting and a few courtroom challenges that don't live up to their potential, but the presentation brings it all together into a fun, intriguing, and high value package. If you like Pheonix Wright but you think it could use some more betrayal and despair then I think you've come to the right place. I only hope it's successful enough for NISA to bring the second title in the series over to the West as well.


Note: Just like to point out that this reviewer had watched the anime first before playing the game of Dangan Ronpa.

Technologytell- A+

If you grab Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc, you’re starting 2014 right. It is an amazing adventure game with a fantastically strong story and a cast of characters you wish would live longer, so you could further enjoy them. It perfectly blends an array of various gameplay mechanics together, even ones you wouldn’t think would compliment one another, coming together in an absolutely sublime experience. It’s entrancing, and I credit Danganronpa for keeping me up past 1am every night for a week because I couldn’t put it down. Play Danganronpa. Love it. Let it ruin your sleep schedule. Then, join me in a vigil outside NIS America’s offices in the hopes they’ll have mercy on us and also localize the sequel. I’ll bring the candles.


GameInformer: 8.5

Danganronpa's murder mysteries are just that - mysterious. I found myself constantly second-guessing what the solution to each investigation was until the verdict was passed. Few games keep the wool over your eyes as effectively as this dark tale. Making a story so gripping is tough in a video game, but it's Danganronpa's best attribute. I was surprised, captivated, and challenged by the culprit in every case. Danganronpa proves why having an interactive experience can make stories more thrilling, even in the context of such a bleak scenario.


Gamesbeat- 75/100

No one takes on a game of betrayal and murder with less comfortable absurdity than Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc. Solving a homicide can be a lot of fun when it’s alongside an idiot clairvoyant, Lolita gambler, and psychotic robo-teddy bear (“Puhuhuhuhuhuhuhu!”). Countering contradictions with metaphorical lead is an amusing attempt to giving a courtroom a more action-packed edge, and it’s a strong enough mechanic to survive some frivolously tacked-on gameplay extensions and hazy road bumps in the translation.

All patient lovers of nerd-dom and the lighter side of death are encouraged to apply to Hope’s Peak Academy. Just remember to pack some heat


PSNStores- 5/5

Zero Escape and DanganRonpa in particular have their similarities and while they’re very different for a number of reasons I think they both speak to the same fan base. Chances are if you liked Zero Escape you already know about DanganRonpa and are planning on picking it up next week. However if you’re not familiar with either game and are willing to try new things I’d urge you to give DanganRonpa a shot. It’s just a fantastic game and manages to tell a very interesting story while still being surprising. Everything from the characters, to the music, to the localization is so top notch that it’s incredibly difficult not to become invested in this game from start to finish. It’ll keep you on your toes the entire way through and completely satisfied once the credits finally roll. I’ve loved every minute with DanganRonpa: Trigger Happy Havoc and, now that this game is finally localized, I certainly hope that we’ll see the sequel to this game get localized as well.


PushSquare- 8/10

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc's biggest mystery is deducing how to put the game down. Featuring a colourful collection of memorable characters, some sweat-inducing gameplay, and a narrative that has more twists than a Hollyoaks omnibus, Spike Chunsoft's bloody tale of high school life will keep you engrossed from start to finish. We find the defendant guilty of murdering our free time.


DieHardGamefan- No Rating
(Would most likely be a 9/10 given how positive his review is)

DanganRonpa is a very stylistic murder-mystery/action-adventure game that plays a bit like Phoenix Wright, 999, and a dating simulator combined. There’s something for everybody, but the plot is extremely compelling by itself. There’s a lot of reading involved, so if you don’t like text-heavy games, this might not be for you; however, if you like the Phoenix Wright series and don’t mind a dark story, I can almost guarantee you’ll love this game. The length of the game isn’t too bad: it’s about 25 hours long, assuming you aren’t trying to 100% the galleries. In about 27.5 hours I was able to complete the game, complete the report card for all the characters, and get a couple runs of school mode in. Finally, the game looks much better than the PSP version and contains extra content, so even if you’ve played it before, it’s worth playing again.


Vandal- 84/100
Note: Review is in Spanish.

If you want a break from action games and you're willing to give a visual novel a try, this is a good option, with interesting plot twists that will keep you playing till you finish it.


JustPushStart- 90/100

Danganronpa has become a sort of guilty pleasure of mine the more I play it. The story and motives get so stretched out, even in the first chapter alone, that it becomes a mental workout just to follow how sadistic the creators at Chunsoft can be. If you can handle the setting of high schoolers murdering each other in the cruelest fashion and falling into despair, you may find yourself one of the best sound novels of recent years.


SlantMagazine- 3.5/5

However, as the game's twisty-turny story carries on, the cases tend to become so tonally convoluted as to bog down the once smooth litigation processes. By about the fourth or fifth chapter, the search-interrogate-solve routine grows slightly tiresome and unnecessarily mentally taxing due to repetition. Even with witty banter flying back and forth between stressed-out suspects, arriving at the end of each protracted prosecution, no matter how many shocking surprises materialize, obligates stout dedication. Yet, somehow, Danganronpa proves itself worthy of such an unwavering commitment; it's a gem of an adventure game that trains players to painstakingly question all things at all times, insidiously breeding stubborn paranoia in their everyday lives.


Wegotthiscovered- 4/5

Despite those issues, and its simplistic gameplay outside of its trial sections, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is still a success due to its solid writing and genuine tension and surprises. I sunk much longer play sessions into this game than I typically do simply because I was dying to see what would happen next and what the secrets behind each mystery were. I suspect that most gamers, if they’re willing to give such an unorthodox-sounding game a chance, will feel the same way.


GameStyle- 9/10

The themes of Danganronpa aren’t going to be for everyone, but for those who want an exceptional story that gets its hooks in, then you cannot go wrong here. Monokuma will leave his mark on you, one way or another. This is once again a fine edition to Vita’s ever impressive library.


Godisageek- 9/10

SUPERB. This is the mark of greatness, only awarded to games that engage us from start to finish. Titles that score 9/10 will have very few problems or negative issues, and will deliver high quality and value for money across all aspects of their design.

VERDICT: Games of this ilk are rarely for everyone, but this is a unique experience that really stands out – even in the Vita’s burgeoning library. Tripper Happy Havoc will last you a good 25 hours or more, but will keep you thoroughly captivated throughout with its mix of interactive storytelling, exploration, detective gameplay, interesting characters, and plot twists.


WorthPlaying- 8/10

DanganRonpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is one of the most distinctive murder mystery games on the market. The interesting characters, unusual aesthetic and action/puzzle fusion make it unlike anything else on the market. In the end, it still scratches the same kind of itch as Phoenix Wright and other visual novel games. It's an enjoyable romp with a cast of silly but likeable characters, and the title straddles the line between serious and ridiculous. It doesn't always work, but it works often enough to keep you engrossed in the game. It has its share of flaws, and the action-based gameplay doesn't benefit the game much. If you're a fan of visual novel games or are looking for a Sony system equivalent to the Phoenix Wright series, DanganRonpa hits the target.


Japanator- 9/10

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is proof that there's still plenty of life left in the visual novel genre. It offers a quirky cast that quickly grasps your interest, while never needing to use them as a crutch to hold up the gameplay. As superb as the character interaction is, it's the courtroom battles that really steal the show, and they will prove the deciding factor in whether or not this game becomes one of your all-time favorites. Sure, there's a few blemishes here and there, but nothing that stops it from serving as evidence that the PlayStation Vita has some life left in it yet.


Twinfinite- 5/5

All-in-all, with amazing visuals, a strong voice cast, compelling story and mechanics, as well as one of the more unique takes on the kill-or-be-killed premise, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc deserves your attention, just don't dig too deep lest you spoil yourself. I assure you, the ride is more enjoyable the less you know.


Expanisve DLC- 9.5/10

Danganronpa Trigger Happy Havoc is the perfect blend of mystery, suspense, and thriller. Though it unsurprisingly has a niche fanbase, it's nice to see such an undiscovered gem finally makes it's way to the EU and NA audiences. It may sound altogether outrageously goofy, but in practice it's a hugely clever game with its own unique quirks. It can be a tad darker than the story lines portrayed in Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors or Virtue's Last Reward, games of a similar style, but that's what is so disturbingly beautiful about it. Probably one of the best games on Sony's latest handheld console, you 'd be crazy not to get your hands on this fantastic masterpiece.


Awesomegames.co.uk- 9/10

Like any great mystery novel, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is almost impossible to put down. Definitely an “up ’til 4am” kind of game, I spent many a sleepless night uncovering everything the game had to offer, and I have to say I believe it was time well spent. Fans of Spike Chunsoft’s previous works such as 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors and Virtue’s Last Reward who are looking for their next mystery fix should look no further than Danganronpa. In fact, I’d recommend it to any Vita owner out there, because God knows we need all the great games we can get!


PocketGamer- 8/10

Unfocused and repetitious at times, Danganronpa crackles with excitement and intrigue when it gets up to speed - making it a visual novel unlike any other


RPGFan- 90/100

Despite a few shortcomings, I had nothing but a blast with Danganronpa. I'm excited for the possibility of seeing a sequel localized. Spike Chunsoft's name might be most recognizable to English-speaking audiences with 999 and VLR, but Danganronpa is an entirely different experience - in a good way. With just enough jokes, twists, and awkward moments to remind you of high school, I can't help but recommend Makoto's journey to Hope's Peak Academy.


RPGsite- 10

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is a thrilling despair-filled adventure all visual fans need to check out. Even those with little to no VN experience should give it a look, as its high energy presentation, likable cast, crazy story, and unique genre-blending gives it a fresh feel that is unlike anything else.


Destructoid- 8.5/10

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is easily one of the most intriguing games I've played in quite some time. It’s as if Persona and Phoenix Wright got together and had a little demon spawn that I didn't want to put down -- no matter how disturbing it can be at times. For fans of adventure/visual novel games, this is an easy must play on Vita this year. But it’s also a great entry for those who tend to find this type of game a little on the slow side and well worth the time.


Gamespot- 8/10

Thankfully, the core story is so gripping that it doesn't matter that the ancillary features aren't up to snuff. Danganronpa excels in nearly every aspect, but two components left a lasting impression on me. First, the respect it shows toward every student, even those who commit the most heinous of crimes, makes you feel sympathy toward everyone, and yearn to understand what makes them tick. Second, the game doesn't revel in the violence of the deaths and the bleakness of the events. You're not a voyeur, after all, but one of them. Danganronpa is an excellent adventure with a story that celebrates the human spirit, even during the darkest times, and that optimistic viewpoint made me smile even when everything seemed to be going wrong.


zoknowsgaming.com- 75/100

What Danganronpa tries to do, it does well. It has a good story, good writing, good characters, good gameplay, and a good sense of humor. What Danganronpa does well, however, it does so in a way that fails to distinguish itself among a pack of experiences that do most of what Danganronpa does but better. I can recommend this game to anyone who wants a good, accessible story and does not consider himself or herself too deep into the surprisingly plentiful VN/adventure hybrid genre. For those far more familiar of the 999‘s and Ace Attorney’s of the world, you can probably do better.


High-Def-Digest- 4.5/5

When you break it down, the ingredients that make up 'Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc' can seem like a mishmash that shouldn't work. The whole of the experience, however, is a refreshing blast, and that's due to more than just the extraordinary setting. The PSP underpinnings make for some unfortunate limitations, but the game's ability to continual introduce story and gameplay twists keep the experience humming along. Though it's hard to keep capitalizing on something that worked so well the first time, it's not at all surprising that the game is a cult hit, and I'm hopeful that at some point in the future an existing or even all-new sequel makes its way here.


usgamer.net- 4.5/5

Danganronpa's exactly the sort of thing I've come to expect from Sony's handheld in recent months: a memorable, stylish and effortlessly cool experience of the kind you simply don't get on any other platform. It's a brilliant game, a wonderfully crafted murder mystery, and one of the most engaging stories I've had the pleasure to plow through in recent months. Long may the Vita continue to play host to this kind of experience, because it's exactly the sort of thing I love to see.


3DJuegos- 8/10
Note: Is in Spanish

Far from being a conventional adventure, this is a work aimed at a very specific audience. And the fact that it is an interactive novel, and be completely in English, certainly causes only a sector of very particular users will enjoy this adventure. But those who do discover a captivating title, different, that will keep you glued to laptop for many hours. A risky and only bet that we would like to experience more frequently.


Press2reset.com- 9/10

After my time with Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc, I don’t think I’m as likely to complain about my high-school life anymore. However, I am certainly more likely to keep an eye out for the next title from Spike Chunsoft. The developer’s mystery visual novel hooked me from the beginning and refused to let go until I had explored every inch of Hope’s Peak Academy. This ultimate tale of hope and despair was backed up with an all-star cast of characters and a perfectly scored playlist. From start to end it was a mystery complete with twists and turns, red herrings, and in the end, immense satisfaction with what I had accomplished.


PSU- 9/10

The mysterious Hope’s Peak Academy student Kyoko Kirigiri at one point remarks, “If you spend all your time trying to avoid danger, you’ll never move forward.” Spike Chunsoft and NIS America both took risks producing and localizing Danganronpa, respectively. In Japan, the game garnered enough fans to spawn an anime, spin-off novels, and a sequel. Hopefully it can find at least niche success in the West and usher in more games of its type. Danganronpa is one of the best PS Vita games I have ever played thanks to its wildly suspenseful, addicting story and above-average interactivity for a visual novel. Its shortcomings combined cannot overrule the enjoyment I got from this fantastic murder mystery adventure.


GameCritics- 8.5/10

I don't want to get too hung up on that ending, though. Although it was a little weak, it certainly wasn't terrible, and it does little to take away from the otherwise outstanding experience that Danganronpa is. It won't win over people who aren't already inclined to appreciate visual novels (because, you know, reading...) but for those who don't mind something a little more cerebral, it comes absolutely recommended. Rating: 8.5 out of 10 -


PlaystationLifestyle- 7.5/100
Note: This one contains spoilers

Overall, Dangan Ronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is a great way to lose around 20 hours of time. It’s a great example of its genre. Dangan Ronpa is genuinely a entertaining ride and the plot advances at a great clip. Dangan Ronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc could use some more polishing, but fans of mystery or oddball characters will want to snatch this up.


Kotaku- Yes
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The Otaku's Study A-

I was enticed by Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc from the time I first heard of it, and despite having low expectations that any English-language publisher would ever acquire the rights for it, Nippon Ichi Software America once again proved me wrong. There are some issues with Danganronpa across the board that keep it from being a perfect gaming experience, but at the same time offers something fresh and new for the murder-mystery genre. This when coupled with the strong concept, entertaining mascot character, solid visuals and mood-inducing soundtrack makes Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc one of the stronger PS Vita games I have had the pleasure of playing.


Gaming-Age- 91/100

For that matter, the whole is far more appealing, period, than it has any right to be, and I say that as someone who doesn't usually have the stomach for terrifying M-rated games. No matter how disturbing it may be, Danganronpa is also quite well-written, and it knows how to engage you so that it's more than just going from Point A to Point B by way of lots of gore (and yes, that's a jab at Corpse Party). It's an unsettling journey, but it's probably one worth taking.


DarkZero- 8/10

DanganRonpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is a welcome addition to the ever-growing library of great visual novel games for us Westerners. It combines the tone of Virtue’s Last Reward with the gameplay of Phoenix Wright rather well, yet manages to have its own style and personality. There’s no doubt that the story is the star of the show, with great characters and a gripping plot that has many twists and turns. Fans of adventure visual novels should without a doubt check DanganRonpa: Trigger Happy Havoc out, while showing support for the series to let Nippon Ichi know that we want the sequel to get the same deserved loving treatment.


Cheat Code Central- 3.4/5

Danganronpa has the look, sound, characters and story for a very interesting mystery-horror game. If you enjoy horror, particularly the off-kilter brand of horror at which Japanese creators tend to excel, you should definitely give the game a spin. Just be prepared to be disappointed that it's more interested in challenging your reflexes than your brain, particularly since having a proper opportunity to solve its mysteries would have been a far more interesting challenge than mastering the simple arcade games that stand in their place.


411Mania- 8.4/10

Danganronpa may miss the mark with many gamers because of the style of game it is. However, if you’re ready for a solid story and intriguing characters, it’s a great time to bust out the Vita and give the game a try. What you’ll find is a great adventure title that will find you guessing at every turn.


TheKoalition- 92/100

But for each day I played the game, I stayed up until 6:00 in the morning after promising myself I would only play for an hour before I went to bed. Daganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc mixes features that may seem absurd on paper; however, they blend wonderfully together to create an enthralling experience. If you decide to pick up this game, then you should expect to not get any sleep before you have to go to work.



Gameblog(fr)- 3.5/5
Note: Review is in French

DanganRonpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is an experience to share, near the interactive cartoon, in which you spend most of your time ... to read. Too bad the game is entirely in English, for his intrigues prove stakeholders, while its characters and atmosphere delusional reach us dive into the adventure. Finally, we note some lengths for a few passages that may tire the player despite a very good layout and sequence of research, discussions and accusations intelligently enhanced with several mini-games. A title to try before you buy, despite its qualities.


4Players- 87/100
Note: Review is in German

Spike Chunsoft kidnapped one with DanganRonpa in a hermetically sealed elite school, you can count only as a successful murderer or a corpse. As one of 15 involuntary prisoners be exposed to a zermarternden psychological terror, which the boundaries between camaraderie and rivalry, look to a whole new emotional depths and is already enough to hope in despair - and all before the cameras of a mysterious stranger who only have a bizarre bear doll comes into contact with the incarcerated. It must follow rules, offenses reconstructed unmasks perpetrators and bear macabre judgments. The strikingly staged fight for survival can thereby even be adapted to individual puzzles and action needs. Only German subtitles or the included in Japan continued one looks in vain, unfortunately. For mystery fans still no way around this gripping anime thriller takes you past!


TheGamersHub- 9/10

A niche title that offers a unique murder-mystery story, complete with likeable characters, simple gameplay, and beautiful presentation


Escapist- 8/10

This is a great little game that has learned lessons from the most celebrated visual novels and adventure games out there, combining the best of the best to create a thoroughly rewarding murder mystery. It can be a bit too ponderous at times, and some of its investigations are more busy work than detective work, but the strength of the writing carries it forward. In any case, you won't find many more surprising games on your PS Vita this year.


IGN- 8.5

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is a wonderful fusion of the text-heavy visual novel genre with Phoenix Wright-like murder investigations and trials. Its quirky humor – made all the better by excellent writing and interesting characters – is constantly unsettled by the seriousness of the plot, making for a unique adventure that Vita gamers owe it to themselves to experience.


Zeke's Review:
Spoiler:
Four years is a long time between initial release and official localization in this day and age. And while it is great that the series is finally getting the recognition it deserves, some players may be divided over how the transition was made. This game's journey to the west has been long overdue, but for some, it might be a shaky, turbulent, plane ride rather than smooth sailing.

Danganronpa may have more gameplay elements than most traditional visual novels, but it is a still a VN at its core and thus the story trumps all in this case. And it goes without saying the plot of Danganronpa is great in many different ways. It can be dark, it can be emotional, it can be suspenseful, it can be heartwarming and above all else it can be insanely clever. When all is said and done and you've solved every mystery and survived each twist and turn, it becomes readily evident that a lot of thought was put into making the plot work.

One of the things I find most impressive is that, on the surface, the premise of Danganronpa is really quite silly. No, really. Try explaining to someone that it's the story of group of "ultimate" students being trapped and coerced to kill eachother in a school by a sadistic teddy bear. In fact, you don't have to look very far to see disdain for this series and how ridiculous it can be at times. There are many who simply can't take it seriously when the villain is a psychotic cartoony teddy bear and the blood is pepto-bismol pink.

But for the more open-minded and courageous, you might find that Danganronpa makes it work. Avoiding spoilers, I can tell you that the game DOES get a bit absurd at times, but that's the weird thing. It works. You can take it seriously, and for a while I wondered why that is.

But now I think I understand that the reason Danganronpa pulls itself off so well is because the core writing is just that strong. Every member of its cast is distinct, personable and believable. Every mystery is so well thought-out and detailed, and every solution is deduced rationally, no matter how ridiculous it gets. Its twists are shocking, its atmosphere is immersive, its messages are well-founded, if a bit cheesy. Danganronpa is quirky, unique and enticing until the end. Story-wise, it is simply brilliant, and that is why we fans take it as seriously as we do.

The gameplay works for its intended purpose, but I never found it to be essential. There's little challenge involved in any of the trial mini-games and it only really serves to make it seem a bit more interactive. Honestly, these elements could've been removed and made the game a straight VN and it would've worked all the same. That being said, the minigames have their charm. There's something about literally "shooting down arguments" that is satisfying in its own right.

And sometimes it does trip you up, forcing you to figure out exactly "which" piece of evidence disproves a certain claim, or trying to put together exactly how a crime was pulled off in an order of events. Still, it isn't meant to be difficult or challenging as the game gives you very lengthy periods of time to figure things out and the only penalty for failure is... to try again.

Now... we have to talk about NISA's localization. I've already made my disdain for it clear before so I'm going to sum up the points I want to make about it as succinctly as I can. These are my issues with it.

1. The change from "Super Highschool Level"/"Super Duper" to "Ultimate".
-This change annoys me. But I understand the reasoning for it. I was really dead set against it at first, but after playing through the whole game... eh... I got used to it. It fits just as well, even if it isn't my preference. So I'll give it a pass.
2. The removal of additional vowels from character names.
-I really do not like this change. NISA has done this before and I've never liked it. Because this kind of change falls under the category of "Assuming the audience for an otaku game has no knowledge of Japanese language/culture", which is a ridiculous notion. It's a minor annoyance but it still grates on me. Other localization companies don't do this, I don't know why NISA thinks they're so special.
3. Everyone addresses eachother by first name. (Aside from one character for plot-reasons)
-This is my bigger issue. If you have any inkling of how the Japanese language works and have heard the JP voice acting, you'll know why this is an issue. Having everyone call eachother by first name makes the whole cast seems a LOT closer than they are actually supposed to be. In my mind, this changes the perception of their relationships and by extent, alters characterization. Which is a big no-no.
4. Absence of suffixes.
-A related point to #3. Now NISA does this all the time, but it is especially egregious here. Getting rid of suffixes in a Disgaea game doesn't bother me in the least. But Danganronpa is a story full of Japanese characters in a Japanese setting. Along with the above point, the absence of name suffixes alters the perception of the character's relations to anyone who knows anything about Japanese culture. There is a BIG difference between "Kirigiri-san" and simply "Kyoko". Again, other localization companies understand this, so NISA doesn't have much of an excuse.

I was honestly shocked when I first heard NISA was going to be the company to bring this game over. It didn't seem like it fit them, and I think even they'll admit that Danganronpa is a bit outside their norm. NISA has a particular style of localization that works for the games they usually bring over, the Disgaeas, the Neptunias, etc. But when dealing with a more... grounded story that has actual Japanese culture in it, that style no longer works. It's a poor fit. A mis-match. It only serves to highlight all the problems I personally have with their style of localization and shows how stubborn and cowardly they can be by ignoring knowledge that most of their audience has.

If there is one thing about the localization that stands out as a positive however, it's the English Dub itself. It's very well casted and very well acted, everyone fits their roles perfectly even if they don't initially seem like they do. The level of back and forth makes it seem like the actors were really playing off of eachother. I don't actually know if the voice actors were recorded in a group (I would love to know though) or if they were recorded separately. Even if they were recorded separately, they did a phenomenal job playing off eachother nonetheless.

I am somewhat disappointed that there isn't much of any voice acting outside of the trials, as some characters kind of get the shaft that way. But that's how it was in the Japanese version as well, so I can't really complain too much. Even if NISA had the budget for it, there was probably a technical reason they couldn't dub more lines.

So to wrap-up, let's review the pros and cons.

+Great Atmospheric Story
+Memorable and Unique Cast of Characters
+Excellent English Dub

-The localization will be hit-or-miss with some fans.
-Mini-games can be tedious if all you want is a straight visual novel.
-I'm still a bit irked that we essentially got half of a game, considering the Reload re-release had both DR1 and DR2 in it's initial JP release. I understand the reasons for it, but I still feel like I'm being forced to pay double. Still, very happy to hear DR2 is coming over as well and so soon too!

Final Score: 8/10.
Final Thoughts: Cannot wait for Danganronpa 2.


Fox News- 9/10

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc is a much needed radical overhaul of the visual novel genre. Western gamers who have either never tried the visual novel genre, or who have been put off it entirely should take another look, and prepare to get sucked into one of the most absorbing games of the year so far.



Will be edited later with more. Feel free to share your own and any you find.
Last edited by Beedlebud on Thu Feb 20, 2014 6:59 pm, edited 32 times in total.
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Houk
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Houk » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:56 pm

Oh yeah, I was gonna make this thread but then got kinda busy. There are a couple other smaller reviews I'll have to look up and post, but I'm super stoked at the reception the game is getting!

(By the way, Gamesradar did give it a score - 4/5 stars woop woop!)

Houk
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Houk » Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:11 pm

Hardcore Gamer wrote:Speaking of aural accolades, the English dub work is praise-worthy as well. Most of the time, dubs are pretty terrible; but here, the actors clearly were given good direction, and deliver line after line of inspired work that helps nail the game’s dire circumstantial ambiance. Lastly, it would be criminal to not shower NIS America with compliments on giving Danganronpa one of the best localization jobs the game industry has seen in years. It’s humorous and clever, but also knows when to pull back and take matters seriously. Character’s personalities really come to life even more so because of the work NISA has done here.


This is one of the biggest compliments a game I've worked on has gotten in a long time, and I'm super pumped to hear it about a game I personally enjoyed working on so much. It's exactly the kind of reaction we were hoping for :D

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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby ZekeFreek » Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:15 pm

*cracks knuckles* I think I'll actually write a review for this one. Haven't done that in awhile. Was going to write a review of DD2 but didn't think it was worth it since I couldn't post it here at the time.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Beedlebud » Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:18 pm

Houk wrote:Oh yeah, I was gonna make this thread but then got kinda busy. There are a couple other smaller reviews I'll have to look up and post, but I'm super stoked at the reception the game is getting!

(By the way, Gamesradar did give it a score - 4/5 stars woop woop!)


Dammit, I looked at that review several times and couldn't find one T____T

Houk wrote:
Hardcore Gamer wrote:Speaking of aural accolades, the English dub work is praise-worthy as well. Most of the time, dubs are pretty terrible; but here, the actors clearly were given good direction, and deliver line after line of inspired work that helps nail the game’s dire circumstantial ambiance. Lastly, it would be criminal to not shower NIS America with compliments on giving Danganronpa one of the best localization jobs the game industry has seen in years. It’s humorous and clever, but also knows when to pull back and take matters seriously. Character’s personalities really come to life even more so because of the work NISA has done here.


This is one of the biggest compliments a game I've worked on has gotten in a long time, and I'm super pumped to hear it about a game I personally enjoyed working on so much. It's exactly the kind of reaction we were hoping for :D


Very nice. I can't wait to see it :)
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Houk » Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:46 pm

Beedlebud wrote:Dammit, I looked at that review several times and couldn't find one T____T


It took me a second to see it myself - they hid it in plain sight!

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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Seventh » Mon Jan 27, 2014 10:14 pm

Yikes. The others are fine, but the bit from the Hardcore Gamer review is seriously making me want to go right to Gamestop tomorrow and cancel my preorder.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby ZekeFreek » Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:16 pm

Seventh wrote:Yikes. The others are fine, but the bit from the Hardcore Gamer review is seriously making me want to go right to Gamestop tomorrow and cancel my preorder.


What bit?
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Seventh » Tue Jan 28, 2014 4:43 am

it would be criminal to not shower NIS America with compliments on giving Danganronpa one of the best localization jobs the game industry has seen in years. It’s humorous and clever, but also knows when to pull back and take matters seriously. Character’s personalities really come to life even more so because of the work NISA has done here.

Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but to me this says that they changed/altered the original script to make it all of this. Otherwise they'd just complement the game itself for being those things, not what NISA did to it to "make it" that way.

Combined with some of Houk's comments in that other thread, I just really don't know if I want to pay full price for this seeing as it looks more and more like NISA decided to do their own thing instead of stay faithful to the original script.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Seyser Koze » Tue Jan 28, 2014 5:37 am

This came up on the Something Awful discussion thread earlier, but it looks like the Gamesradar reviewer didn't bother playing the copy he was sent - not only does he use the LP's terminology, but he makes no mention of School Mode whatsoever. /sigh

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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Beedlebud » Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:16 am

Seventh wrote:
it would be criminal to not shower NIS America with compliments on giving Danganronpa one of the best localization jobs the game industry has seen in years. It’s humorous and clever, but also knows when to pull back and take matters seriously. Character’s personalities really come to life even more so because of the work NISA has done here.

Maybe I'm reading too much into it,


You are.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Seventh » Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 am

Maybe I am. But between NISA's history, Houk's own words, and now this review, it's not as if I have nothing to go on.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Beedlebud » Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:55 am

Seventh wrote:Maybe I am. But between NISA's history, Houk's own words, and now this review, it's not as if I have nothing to go on.


I'm pretty sure the reviewer didn't have the original script next to NISA's and was comparing word for word for accuracy.

You don't have to have the original script handy to be able to tell whether a great localization was done, by the way.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Seventh » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:02 am

If you're praising a localization instead of the actual game, they're either so different that the distinction needs to be made in the first place (in which case it is by default not great) or you're kissing ass.

Maybe so, but then just refer it to the game. The fact that the distinction is being made and the reviewer says NISA "improves" the game is a problem.
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Re: Dangan Ronpa Review Thread

Postby Beedlebud » Tue Jan 28, 2014 7:13 am

Seventh wrote:If you're praising a localization instead of the actual game, they're either so different that the distinction needs to be made in the first place (in which case it is by default not great) or you're kissing ass.

Maybe so, but then just refer it to the game. The fact that the distinction is being made and the reviewer says NISA "improves" the game is a problem.


Lord, so much paranoia over a good rating. :roll: If you're this concerned, have you tried emailing the reviewer yourself?
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