Divi-dead is a Japanese-translated-to English 2D eroge
released by C's Ware in 1998. The game falls into the category of adult horror, as it deals with supernatural and sexual topics. Some images from the game are brutally violent and strange
, while others are lighthearted and erotic. It is a visual novel that involves a supernatural mystery which the protagonist must solve in order to complete the game. There are several endings offered based on the decisions you make throughout, but the clues on where you should go are few, vague, and far between.
Along with TrueLove '95
, Divi-Dead is often credited for being one of the games to start the interest in ero-games outside of Japan.
Life has been rough for Ranmaru Hibikiya. Bedridden as a child with a mysterious illness, he's had to spend most of his time alone, drugged, wondering if he would live to adulthood. Now, however, things are getting better for him. His health has improved; he only experiences the occasional seizure. Also, he's been enrolled in his uncle's distinguished institution, the Asao Private School.
Of course, this fortuitous turn isn't without a catch. His uncle, a rather mysterious man, installed Ranmaru at Asao to serve as his spy. Ranmaru begins an innocuous investigation, not really expecting to find anything important. Soon, however, he finds himself immersed in horrifying, supernatural events that could claim his life at any moment.
This eroge contains the following tropes:
- All Just a Dream: A recurring theme, zig-zagging throughout the game. Scenes often end with the protagonist apparently waking from a dream, but those 'dreams' may turn out to be visions, memories, true events that occurred while sleepwalking...
- And Now for Someone Completely Different: At the endgame on Haruka's path the original protagonist discorporates, and you finish the story playing as someone you probably never even knew existed.
- Attempted Rape: Ranmaru on Azusa. Borders slightly on Near-Rape Experience, as he does seem to hesitate when she points out that this is rape, but in the end she fought him off rather than him stopping of his own accord.
- Artistic License – Biology: "What a fart-blasting scrotum this guy is!"
- Berserk Button: Several guys react badly to seeing a woman in danger. Haruka uses this to her advantage.
- "Blind Idiot" Translation: Some of the most obvious problems:
- Changing the twins' last name from "Itsukino" to "Seino" for no discernible reason, and then keeping the dialog which mentions their last name being related to the moon. With the original last name and basic knowledge of Japanese or Sailor Moon, it makes sense. Otherwise, no.
- Dropping all honorifics, but maintaining several conversations in which characters discuss each other's use or non-use of them. When everyone is calling everyone else by first names, it makes no sense to suddenly flag one character as being unusual for doing so.
- Translating "miko" as "angel", resulting in dialog in which someone comes from a "family of angels", which gives totally the wrong idea.
- Probably intentionally mis-translating (or outright replacing with ellipses!) certain scenes and lines for censorship purposes.
- All in all, between the Mind Screw plot and the extremely confusing translation, understanding what's going on at any point is very difficult.
- Caught on Tape: A videotape of what was done to Haruka was apparently sent to her boyfriend Kimihito.
- Deadly Hug: Haruka's ending - we see the hug at first, and then the deadly nature is revealed as the camera pans down.
- Demonic Possession: Mami is occasionally controlled by the ghost of her sister Kasumi. Ranmaru, on the other hand, is himself possessing someone else's body at some points in the story.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: Kimihito meets his end by being hit on the head with a chandelier.
- Dying as Yourself: Implied in Haruka's ending. In the end, dying was apparently a relief for her. And for him.
- Elegant Gothic Lolita: Yuka dresses this way. Ranmaru mentions she looks like a doll, albeit a giant blood-covered one...
- Fantastic Drug: The "scent" - a special incense that people seem to be desperate to get. Unusually, it's not the calming drug that's the problem. The problem is what's making people so crazy that they're desperate to get hold of something to calm them down.
- Femme Fatale: Haruka plays this role, luring the protagonist into wanting to 'save' her.
- "Freaky Friday" Flip / Grand Theft Me: You are not the only person in your body. It's not your body at all.
- Guide Dang It: Good luck trying to get the best ending without a walkthrough!
- Hope Spot: Saving Mami. He struggles through hell to get there, it looks like he's finally getting through to her... and then the music changes.
- IKEA Erotica: Much of it completely made up by the translation and having nothing to do with the original text.
- "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Ranmaru and Azusa after she's brainwashed by the villain. He gets through to her using his own powers, but too late to avoid being shot.
- Jerkass: Sano-sensei, first introduced apparently harassing a female student, later spending a lot of time insulting and threatening the protagonist. Later revealed to be much worse.
- The Mole: The protagonist has been sent to the school, pretending to be a normal student, in order to investigate various strange goings-on. So has Azusa.
- The Nameless: Nishizaki, at least the person you know as Nishizaki through most of the game. His true identity may have been magically erased.
- Teacher/Student Romance:
- Ms. Mayumi and Mami.
- There is one point during the game where the player can decide to have sex with either the school nurse or the librarian.
- Third-Person Person: Mami, although this nuance was dropped in the translation. It can still be heard in the voice acting.