This game is the subject of an ongoing LP and translation effortnote (as of this writing, the LP is currently at the start of Chapter 3). A temporary spoiler-free page for this game has been set up HERE. Readers of the LP who wish to avoid being spoiled should go there.Super Dangan Ronpa 2: Good Bye Academy of Despair is the sequel to Danganronpa, released in 2012.Much like its predecessor, the game begins with a new student starting their first day at Hope's Peak Academy, an elite private school that only accepts the best of the best of the best, no matter how eclectic their field. Hajime Hinata, the new guy, has always admired the school and is eagerly looking forward to attending... that is, until he arrives at the school for his first day and suddenly falls unconscious.When he wakes up, Hajime finds himself trapped in a classroom with fifteen other new "Super High-School Level" students. They are greeted by a strange rabbit-like doll called "Usami", who promptly announces that they'll be going on a field trip. With a wave of her wand, the walls to the classroom fall apart to reveal that they have all been stranded on the tropical resort island of Jabberwock. Under Usami's instructions, the students must bond with each other to gain the "Fragments of Hope" needed to leave the island.All of this is sadly for naught when Monobear suddenly shows up and violently usurps control of the island from Usami. He then reinstates the same "School Life of Mutual Killing" rules from the first game, meaning that the only way off the island is for one of the students to commit a perfect murder and sacrifice the other students so that they alone can leave. While the flow of the game remains largely unchanged, the dynamics of certain mini-games have been drastically changed and new ones have been added to the mix as well: for example, some segments of Non-Stop Debate task you with finding the right statement to agree with, and other classmates can now interrupt you with an objection.After completing the game, an alternate story called Dangan Island is unlocked where Usami strikes first against Monobear when he appears and manages to beat him as a result, preventing him from taking over. The field trip goes exactly as planned, giving you plenty of time to bond with your fellow classmates in peace.Like with the previous game, a translated Let's Play of the game is underway at the Something Awful forums, alongside Dangan Ronpa Zero. A mirror of the thread is available here. Likewise, other translation efforts can be found here and here which consecutively make up the entirety of the main story.There is a wikia page for the game here that contains a complete summary of the game, including unmarked spoilers.Be warned, for this page has no spoiler restrictions, and will contain massive SPOILERS for the entire game. If you're spoiler-adverse, do not read ahead. Due to the nature of the game's story, please be careful in the use of spoiler tags.
This series provides examples of:
Absence of Evidence: Used to corner the first culprit. Hanamura claims to have been in the dining room with the others, but made no mention of Mikan tripping. This being Hanamura, the fact that he can't recall it is very suspicious indeed, combined with the fact that his voice was heard during the blackout...
Also used in the fourth trial. The murderer dropped a hammer at the crime scene to make it appear to be the murder weapon, but the fact that it doesn't have any oil on it proves that the murder weapon must have been something else.
Used in a somewhat roundabout way in the fifth trial, as well. The cause of death is suspiciously absent from the Monobear File. An element absent from the Monobear File was pivotal to the last two cases, so Hinata realizes the case must be more complicated than it first appears — and indeed, it is.
Amnesiac Hero: Hinata, who's most upset by the fact he can't even remember his talent. It's eventually revealed that he does not have one, since he's one of the reserve course students.
Asshole Victim: In Twilight Syndrome Murder Mystery, both murderers view their victims this way. More specifically, F-suke's sister was seen as a selfish Spoiled Brat who used her parents' connections to avoid any punishment for her cruelty, and F-suke wanted to make certain her murderer was punished.
Bait and Switch: The game loves to pull this and play on your expectations from the first game.
Usami reassures everyone that they've been invited to an island to make friends with each other, complete with a peppy J-pop opening song... then Monobear shows up and immediately reverts everything to the "murder" format.
In Chapter 1, Komaeda confesses in court to a murder plot... but his plan actually failed.
The execution of Chapter 1 is a callback to the first execution in the original game... except Hanamura doesn't get blown up, he gets deep-fried in a volcano.
It is revealed in Chapter 5 that in Chapter 1, the victim is not Togami, as the player is led to believe, but a Super High-School Level Imposter pretending to be him.
Beach Scene: During the Prologue, Hinata doesn't fully relax until Usami gives everyone school swimsuits and encourages them to play on the beach. Chapter 2 features some more traditional beachside frolicking.
Big Damn Heroes: Just as the remaining students are about to hit the Graduate button (which would allow AI Junko to possess their dead friends) Naegi shows up to save them.
Then later during the same trial, Naegi needs two more people to initiate a forced shutdown and stop AI Junko. Cue the arrival of Kirigiri and Togami.
Bittersweet Ending: The survivors escape, but they lose their memories of the game and are "reset" to how they were as remnants of Super High-School Level Despair. Despite this, they stay on the Jabberwock Islands to tend to their comotose friends and have vowed to create a new future of hope for themselves. Also, despite the belief that Hinata would be "reset" to Izuru Kamukura and lost forever, he retains some measure of control and sanity, possibly via a Split Personality Merge.
In Chapter 1, there is a failed murder attempt using a knife stolen from a kitchen.
In Chapter 2, the victim is bludgeoned to death with a single blow. There are hints that a serial killer is responsible but that turns out to be untrue.
In Chapter 3, there is a double murder, and the first body found is actually the second to be killed. The game also hints that two people are responsible (like the first game) but in this case it is a Red Herring. Also involves someone recovering their memories.
In Chapter 4, it is initially unclear on whether it is suicide or murder. The final words of the perpetrator motivate the students to keep living.
Also, the culprit notes that there was a possibility of them being killed by their target instead, which would have led to a very confusing case...just like with Sayaka Maizono in the first game.
In Chapter 5, the murder is staged with the goal of having a specific target (or in this case, targets) executed by the trial. The victim's death also involves the Spear of Gungnir, and the initially suspected cause of death is not what killed them.
Also, the case itself is a Callback to multiple Danganronpa murders. A knife is used, the body is tied up, poison is the cause of death, bomb explosions are involved, and the body is pierced with a spear.
Cheat Code: In Chapter 2, Nanami reveals that the cryptic message at the end of Twilight Syndrome is actually a hint to a cheat code that can be entered at the title screen. It's required to beat the game and reveal the "motive".
Class Trip: The reason why the class has ended up on the island. At least, until Monobear showed up.
Cult Of Personality: The Super High-School Level Despair group worships the original "Super High-School Level Despair" Junko Enoshima, going so far as to carve up her dead body and surgically replace their own body parts with hers.
Death by Irony: Not to as great an extent as the first game, but some of the executions still count:
In Chapter 2, Pekoyama (who believed herself to be a "tool" of Kuzuryuu) is literally controlled like a puppet by Monobear as she slices through an army of samurai. He then releases control of her just long enough for her instincts to kick in and accidentally slash Kuzuryuu, the person she had vowed to protect. In the following moment of weakness, she allows herself to be overwhelmed.
In Chapter 5, Nanami is trapped in a no-win game by Komaeda's plot and chooses to sacrifice herself by confessing. In the following execution, she is again placed in a no-win game.
Deserted Island: The Jabberwock Islands. Subverted in that the islands aren't entirely devoid of civilization - there's a hotel and other buildings built there. However, other than the students, there are no other people around.
Disney Death: All of the dead students aren't technically dead. Because they are trapped in a computer simulation, their bodies are still alive. However, the mental shock of dying in the program basically makes them braindead. In the ending, Naegi reveals there might be a very small chance of finding a way to revive them, which is why the surviving students stay behind on the island.
Drawing Straws: Komaeda suggests this as a way to determine who gets to clean up the lodge. He ends up with the short straw.
Empty Chair Memorial: Just like the first game, dead students are replaced during School Trials with a "memorial" picture that has their face crossed out. However, the game adds a bit more Black Comedy by customising the cross marks of certain students, namely the guilty ones. The customisations are: Hanamura's cross is a knife and fork; Mikan's cross is made up of bandages and rotated so it looks more like a first aid symbol; Peko's cross is a shinai and sheath; Gundam's cross is a capital letter "X"; and Komaeda's cross is dripping blood.
Empty Shell: Monokuma claims the students killed in his game were reduced to this. Hope is held out in the end that their condition is more of a Convenient Coma.
Eye Scream: Monobear inflicts this on Usami when he takes over, then mocks her about it, calling her Monomi from then on.
Later on, Kuzuryuu loses an eye when he tries to stop Peko's execution.
During a montage that demonstrates the kind of self-mutilation that members of Super High-School Level Despair inflicted upon themselves, one of the examples is of someone who gouged out their own eye and replaced it with the eye of Junko Enoshima.
During the first trial, Komaeda presents himself as an increasingly obvious candidate for being the culprit. Helps that he really was planning to cause a murder...
Twisted all around during the second trial, where Pekoyama claims after the trial she was taking the fall for somebody else so they could successfully graduate, assuming that this person merely saw her as their tool.
Foreshadowing: Early on, Monobear announces that there is a "traitor" in the group of sixteen students. In many official images, such as the soundtrack album or even the image at the top of this page, Chiaki Nanami is either drawn separately from the main group or in a markedly different way (such as being upside down). She's the one who doesn't belong in the group.
Additionally, some of the decorated backgrounds behind the characters in the game's intro tell of later events. For example, Gundam's background is that of glowing "magic circles", and during his execution he tries to save himself by drawing magic protection circles on the ground.
On the topic of Gundam, his first Free Time event has him ask Hinata his "True Name". While it is a question asked due to Gundam's eccentric behavior, it becomes a bit Harsher in Hindsight given the reveal of Kamakura Izuru.
Hard Work Hardly Works: The subject of a monologue/Hannibal Lecture at the start of Chapter 2, where Komaeda claims that unless somebody's born with incredible talent, they can never earn it.
Hate Plague: A non-supernatural version of this is essentially the end result of Super High-School Level Despair's ideology. It began when the reserve students were Brainwashed and Crazy by Junko Enoshima and revolted against Hope's Peak Academy over their shabby treatment compared to the "main course" students. This spread into general social revolt due to the talents of SHSL Despair as the "have nots" rebelled against the "haves", and eventually descended into war without purpose.
Heel Realization: The entire main cast, who realise that they are the students who caused The Biggest, Most Despair-Inducing Incident In All Of Human History.
Hinata realizes that the person who allowed the events of the game to take place was himself, when he smuggled the AI Junko program into the system as Izuru.
Hope Is Scary: Arguably the entire point of the game, for how interrelated hope and despair are as concepts.
Laser-Guided Amnesia: Monobear reveals early on that all of the cast have had their memories stolen by the Future Foundation. This is true, but for good reason: they were all traumatic memories of their time as part of Super High-School Level Despair, and the New World program was designed to create new, happier memories to fill the gap.
Lighter and Softer: The game starts out looking like this. Its first opening animation is very upbeat, almost dating sims like, and the colors of the characters and the environment are notably much brighter than its predecessor. And then Monobear comes into the picture...
Loophole Abuse: In Chapter 5, Hinata demands that Monobear stop Komaeda from blowing up the islands by pointing out that it breaks one of the rules. Monobear refuses, stating that the "no-one can kill more than two people" rule does not take effect until after it has been broken.
Lost Forever: On a given playthrough, you obviously can't spend Free Time with someone after their death. In addition, if the player doesn't spend time with Nagito Komaeda during the first two free time opportunities in Chapter 1, you can still spend time with them but cannot get their actual Free Time events.
Lotus-Eater Machine: The entire game is revealed to be this, as a radical new method for rehabilitating those who were Brainwashed and Crazy by Junko and Super High-School Level Despair by replacing their traumatic memories with new, happy ones.
Meaningful Echo: Naegi uses 11037 as a pass-code for the students to use to assure their safety, the same "number" Maizono scrawled on the wall to save him during the first game's first trial.
Mind Screwdriver: This game clears up a lot of the confusion in the first Dangan Ronpa game. For example, in Super Dangan Ronpa 2, you finally learn what on earth the The Worst, Most Despair-Inducing Incident in the History of Mankind was: it started as a revolt by the reserve course students after they were brainwashed by Junko using footage of the first "School Life of Mutual Killing", in which Izuru Kamukura slaughtered the majority of the student council. Furious at Hope's Peak for placing them on the reserve list in favour of sinking money into Izuru Kamukura, the reserve students went on a rampage that descended into war without purpose through the talents of SHSL Despair.
Mind Virus: The "Despair Disease" that Monobear spreads in Chapter 3.
Moe: In-universe, this is invoked by Hiyoko to win more fans as a traditional dancer. As popular as this makes her, it's not her true personality.
In Chapter 2, an extended Fanservice sequence ends with Souda stumbling across the second murder victim.
In Chapter 3, one of the survivors tries to raise everyone's spirits with a rock concert, provoking some hilarious reactions... until Monomi interrupts with the news that one of the others is trying to kill Monobear, and everyone runs off, leaving the organizer in tears.
Mythology Gag: "Or, in other words… that one of us is a serial killer? That sounds like a plot twist from some kind of weird game or something…" referencing Fukawa's split personality as Genocider Syo.
The password the students were looking for ended up being 11037.
Nebulous Evil Organisation: The Future Foundation is made out to be this by Monobear. At first Hinata believes it to be true because the Future Foundation took away his memories. Except it turns out that the Future Foundation was on the side of the students all along, and the entire game was an attempt to rehabilitate their Brainwashed and Crazy personalities instead of just killing them all. In fact, the final chapter has Hinata subverting the trope by shooting down his own arguments about how everything is the fault of the Future Foundation.
Ordinary High School Student: Komaeda claims to be this. Subverted, as he is insanely lucky. But played straight with Hinata, who has no Super High-School Level talent.
Out-of-Character Moment: Chapter 3's motive has this happen to several characters thanks to Monobear infecting people with a "despair disease" in order to provide a "motive" to kill.
Painting the Fourth Wall: By the end of chapter 5, dead characters start popping out of nowhere and the game screen starts becoming pixelated, with blocks of the screen falling off at any given time and text being placed where it really shouldn't be. This is to represent that the virtual reality the characters find themselves in are on its last legs.
Poor Communication Kills: Basically the theme of Chapter 2, where the murder occurs because Pekoyama fails to understand what Kuzuryuu wants from her. Koizumi also falls victim to this as well, yelling and chastising Kuzuryuu for his role in Twilight Syndrome when she wanted to atone for her actions.
Relationship Values: Like the first game, the protagonist can hang out with the other students and give them presents. This time, you'll be rewarded with Hope Shards which can be exchanged for skills during the trial sequences.
Also, like the first game, there's a limited number of free time segments in each chapter, and you can't hang out with someone if they're dead. There are also certain characters who are unavailable at certain times for plot reasons.
The Remnant: The entire cast of students, with the exception of Nanami, are what's left of the original SHSL Despair group that kickstarted The Worst, Most Despair-Inducing Incident In Human History.
Sacrificial Lamb: Hiyoko teases Souda by calling him a 'background character' who's doomed to suffer an early death. His profile on the official Japanese site even implies the exact same thing. Subverted, because he's not! He doesn't kill anyone and he isn't executed, while Hiyoko herself gets killed in chapter 3.
Sadistic Choice: Kill one of your classmates, or spend the rest of your life in captivity - and when it comes down to the trial, fess up and receive a gruesome punishment, or escape with the blood of everyone else on your hands.
Chapter 4's motive boils down to choosing between starving to death alongside everyone else or committing murder to get out.
In Chapter 5, Komaeda's Thanatos Gambit forces the students to either convict an innocent party (the one who accidentally and unknowingly killed him) or sacrifice her so that they can live.
In the final chapter, the students are given a choice: choose to "Graduate" and leave the island with their new memories but enable the mastermind's AI to hijack the bodies of everyone who died in the game; willingly stay in the Lotus-Eater Machine with all of their friends but doom the three members of the Future Foundation who came in to help them; or force a shutdown that would destroy the mastermind's AI but also erase their new memories, resetting them back to how they were before the game started along with the memories of all the atrocities they committed as part of Super High-School Level Despair.
Show Within a Show: In Chapter 2, Monobear presents the students with a doujin game called Twilight Syndrome, which functions as Shmuck Bait: completing the game reveals a motive to kill, but if you choose not to play and someone else does, then you might be in danger and not know about it. In the end it gets revealed that the game covers two murders that happened during the period that their stolen memories are from, specifically the murder of Kuzuryuu's sister and that of her killer Satou.
Shut Up, Hannibal!: A lengthy monologue at the start of Chapter 2 is finally cut off by an unknown speaker screaming "SHUT UP!" (It's later revealed that this was Souda.))
Stuff Blowing Up: In Chapter 5, Komaeda decides the best way to flush out the traitor is to start blowing up everything, threatening to destroy all of the islands unless they expose themselves. It turns out to be a bluff.
Tall Poppy Syndrome: The mysterious voice who talks to Komaeda in the mind-screwy "Chapter 0" believes that the world is like this, with talentless people hunting down those with talents and driving the world into an evolutionary dead end. It's revealed near the end that the voice belongs to Izuru Kamukura.
Ten Little Murder Victims: Monobear invokes this by announcing early on that there is a "traitor" in the group of sixteen students. Subverted on multiple levels: Yes, there is a mole. No, she is not a murderer but instead is a "mole" working for the good guys to observe and support the students. And no, the knowledge and suspicion of a "mole" does not lead anyone to commit murder: Komaeda uses this excuse as a bluff to try and kill everyone but the mole.
This Is a Work of Fiction: Inverted in-series with the game Twilight Syndrome, which comes with a disclaimer that the events depicted are factual and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is entirely deliberate. It's never revealed if they are, but the evidence is enough for Kuzuryuu to order a murder.
Treachery Cover Up: Hope's Peak attempted to cover up Kamukura's murdering the student council because of his involvement in the Ultimate Hope Project. When SHSL Despair revealed this to the world, all hell broke loose.
Villain Has a Point: In Chapter 4, Gundam shoots back after being berated for being the culprit:
If one would call murder so that one may live "evil", then what must one call surrendering on life itself?! If the world shall name it just, then I shall fight that world with all my strength! For to renounce life and choose death is to blaspheme life. It is the perversion of nature, the conceit of mankind!
Virgin Sacrifice: Sonia asks Gundam to take her along next time he goes to the amusement park of Hell. When he says that the admission is the blood of a virgin, she dejectedly says that her blood would not meet the requirement.
Well-Intentioned Extremist: The Future Foundation in general. Their goal is to bring hope back to the world, and they're willing to execute the remaining members of SHSL Despair in order to do that.
Wham Episode: The ending of Chapter 5. Hinata goes out after a day of rest, on the last day on the countdown, and encounters Nanami - who died in the last trial. Then the other dead students start appearing, although they're never displayed in-world. The survivors witness the last message left by Komaeda, who gives them the password to the ruins on the second island - 11037. Then they actually get to the ruins, and everything glitches out of whack.
During the Chapter 5 trial, Nanami starts acting strangely, ending with this:
Nanami: "But ... there’s nothing they could have done ... since even if they had wanted to confess ... they couldn’t have ... Because they weren't made that way. So ... I want you guys to try and guess. (...) The Future Foundation spy, the traitor hidden amongst us... who do you think it is?"
During Chapter 6:
Naegi: The real bad guys... are you guysnote (Hinata and his friends).
Completing the game once unlocks Dangan Island, an alternate scenario where Monobear fails to take over and the class trip goes as planned, focusing on socializing and getting to know your classmates better.
Dangan Ronpa IF, meanwhile, asks "What If? Naegi regained his memories before the murders started in Danganronpa?"
What the Hell, Hero?: Hinata, whose self-hatred and longing to be "talented" was so strong that he willingly took part in a project to supresss his real identity and be rebuilt as the multi-talented "Super High-School Level Hope", Izuru Kamukura. Then he fell under Junko's influence, murdered the student council, kickstarted The Worst, Most Despair-Inducing Incident Of All Human History, and made the events of Super Dangan Ronpa 2 possible by smuggling AI Junko into the Lotus-Eater Machine.
Your Mind Makes It Real: Despite the students being trapped in a massive computer simulation, the program works too well, meaning that anybody who dies inside it effectively becomes braindead in the real world.