Togainu no Chi is the first Boys Love Game made by Nitro+CHiRAL; it is noteworthy for its violence and dark storyline. It was later ported to the Playstation 2 under the name Togainu no Chi: True Blood with the adult content taken out and some scenes censored, but containing more endings and a few new characters. One of the several manga adaptations (one which has no Boys Love content) is available in English from Tokyopop.When Akira is accused of murder and sent to jail, he is approached by a mysterious one-armed woman named Emma. Emma has a deal for him; in exchange for his freedom, he will participate in a Blood Sport competition taking place in the city of Toshima called Igura. The rules are simple; collect dog tags from other competitors by beating them in brawls. The one who collects the right tags gets to face off against Il-Re, the supposed undefeated champion of Toshima.However, things aren't going to be easy for Akira; the people in the Igura are extremely brutal and not above murder in order to get what they want. There are also rumors of a mysterious black-haired man who has been killing off Igura participants seemingly at random, a man who seems to be almost invincible. To top it all, Akira's best friend Keisuke has followed him to Toshima out of worry, and Keisuke is nowhere near ready to take on the dangers of Igura...An anime adaptation by A-1 Pictures has been aired during the Fall 2010 anime season, the trailer for which can be seen here.Now has a character page.
In the game, a phone is given to Akira so that he can keep contact with Emma while it serves as a transmitting device so he-and hopefully Nano-can be found. However, nothing like that is given to him in the anime so how did Emma and Gwen find him?
Since this series is rather dark and violent, expect a lot of people to die. The route in the game and the choices you make determines how many of the characters are alive at the end.
In the anime, Takeru bit the dust first via Keisuke and later, Gwen is killed by Emma, and Emma killed by Nano. Keisuke seems to subvert this trope often despite the fact he has the lowest of surviving.
Keisuke is no longer immune to this trope. As episode 11, he is killed by Shiki when he tries to protect Akira.
As of episode 12, Nano is dead. The only survivors are Akira, Rin, Motomi and Shiki. Arbito and his thugs are unknown as the last time we see them, they were still stuck in Toshima.
In the game, Motomi is the only character who never dies. Or at least no proof is given.
In one ending of Shiki's route, he successfully defeats Nano with his katana, but then loses all motivation to live and ends up like a doll. Akira decides to stay with Shiki despite this and protects him from all the people who wants him dead and that's the Good Ending.
Possibly subverted. The end of the Drama CD implies that Shiki is starting to regain consciousness.
Black and Gray Morality: At first, the story appears to be the Excuse Plot of Akira being sent to Igura to kill Il Re, while violence and sex ensues. Later, we find out factions involved (the Military, Vishico and some individuals) are at battle with each other, over Line and its source, Nano, and every side has questionable motives which do not take the protagonist or other individuals into consideration.
Black Blood: Inverted. Since blood plays such an important role in the story, the anime emphasizes it by making it so bright red that it glows.
Akira goes through a lot of crap in the series and it officially started when Keisuke injected Line and it seemed to have ended when Keisuke went back to normal after drinking Akira's blood. However he might have officially been broken when Keisuke is killed by Shiki.
Also what mainly happens on Shiki's route, intentionally.
Cast Full of Pretty Boys: All Igura participants are male. All of them. In fact, the city of Toshima seems to have no female inhabitants. The only female present in the series is Emma, and she is a relatively minor character. Of course, it's unsurprising considering the original media is Boys Love.
Chekhov's Gun: Before going into Toshima, Akira is given a phone so he can keep in contact with Emma. Turns out there's a tracking device in it.
The anime. Trying to squish plot elements from multiple routes into twelve episodes rarely works out well (especially when all your budget seems to be going towards paying for a new ending song for each episode), and Shiki's fans in particular seem to be unhappy with the his lack of appearances and eventual vilification.
Pragmatic Adaptation: So as not to neglect any of the boys, the anime follows Keisuke's route to its bad end with a few important scenes from Rin and Motomi's routes tossed in. The last few episodes also append a particular flashback from n's route and one of Shiki's bad ends, with an original (and poorly-received) epilogue.
Rin had his friends killed by his older half-brother, Shiki.
Motomi's son and wife have died.
Nano was used as a test subject.
A Date with Rosie Palms: Shiki's route. After "marking" Akira as his property, Shiki notices that the pain (from a wound on the left palm) turns Akira on. So he tells Akira to "comfort yourself with your own hand".
Dub-Induced Plot Hole: Somewere between volumes 4 and 5 of the Tokyopop edition of the manga, the translators noticed that the character they'd been calling "Nicole Prumier" was actually supposed to be "Nicole Premier". Since this was plot-relevant, they had to change it mid-story.
During the War: The opening states The Third Division is responsible for the Crapsack World the story takes place in. However, this isn't touched on again until very late in individual character routes, and isn't mentioned in some adaptations.
Dying Declaration of Love: Subverted. Keisuke came close to confessing his feelings. Instead, he just tells Akira that he's sorry for all the trouble he caused.
Keisuke's route. Because there are multiple bad endings with him and choosing other routes will mean his death, the only Good Ending is when they escape Toshima and things go back to normal for them except the two are dating.
Considering there is a ratio of seven official bad endings (two of them are YMMV, though) to five official good endings, this trope applies to the entire game.
Keisuke, who had big puppy dog eyes for the first five episodes, now has narrower, crazier eyes after his corruption.
But he got better after Episode 9.
Hannibal Lecture: Nano does this to Shiki. In the game, whether Shiki accepts Nano's challenge or not-and conversely what kind of ending the player gets-depends of if Akira reminds him of his original goal. Near the end of the drama CD following the good ending, Shiki delivers a Shut Up, Hannibal! to Nano.
Hidden Depths: Most of the characters appear to have a simple yet sound reason behind their actions. However, the motivations of individual characters are explored in more detail in their individual routes, including their pasts and previous experiences with Project Nicole and the war.
High-Pressure Blood: The anime is particularly guilty for this. A small knife cut to the forehead results in the spraying of a large puddle of blood on the ground.
In practically every episode of the anime. In fact, certain scenes in the anime are even more Ho Yaytastic than their R18 PC BL game counterpart, probably as compensation for not including certain other scenes.
Episode 4 goes Up to Eleven. Starts out with Keisuke x Akira, then moves right along to Rin x Akira, and then wraps it up with Shiki x Akira.
In Episode 6, it seemed, Keisuke was going to get what he wanted, but that didn't pan out, either..
Hypocrite: Akira becomes this at the end of the anime series. When he saves Rin from Shiki, he tells Rin to forget about killing Shiki because it's not worth it. Later on, Shiki kills Keisuke and Akira tries to kill him. Rin tells him the same thing. Akira doesn't listen to him at the end and returns to Toshima to kill Shiki.
Ironic Echo: In episode 10, Akira saves Rin after he is almost killed by Shiki and tells him that killing Shiki isn't worth it and he must continue living. Come episode 12, Shiki kills Keisuke and Akira tries to kill him. Rin stops him and says that killing Shiki isn't worth it.
It's All My Fault: Akira blames himself for Keisuke's death. So much that he somewhat accepts the treatment Shiki gives him because he believes it's punishment.
Happens whenever it rains in the PC game, however the only exception to this is Keisuke's good ending in which he survives Akira's blood. Examples:
Emma and Gwen get killed after they reveal the truth as to why they really wanted Akira to come to Toshima.
Though Keisuke survives the first round of 'there will be death rain' he doesn't survive it a second time in Nano's ending.
I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: In Keisuke's good ending, he snaps out of his line-induced insanity and when he remembers everything he did-including raping Akira-he says he will go away if Akira doesn't want to see him again. Thankfully, Akira doesn't want him to leave.
Also on Shiki's good ending, as he and Akira are leaving Toshima, he tells Akira to go where he wants since he knows what's going to happen to him.
Karma Houdini: Shiki at the end of the anime. Despite the fact that Akira comes to kill him, Shiki has already injected too much Line into his body making him super powerful so any hope of killing him is out the drain especially since he was able to critically injure Nano.
Lighter and Softer: Arguably, some of the Drama CDs, which feature more comedic situations.
Lima Syndrome: In Shiki's true ending, he shows Akira the way out of Toshima and tells him to go wherever he likes. He even goes as far as trying to comfort Akira when he was brooding about his blood, in an awkward Shiki-esque way.
Love Martyr: Keisuke starts out looking like one in regards to Akira. Eventually the dynamic gets flipflopped once he starts taking Line and becomes Kurosuke.
Not So Different: In the game, Keisuke and Akira acknowledge Nano, despite being emotionless and cruel to those around him, suffer from similar emotional burdens to their own due to all of them being involved in Project Nicole.
The final episode essentially screams "We'll fix this when it comes out on DVD". But maybe we should at least give them credit for airing the episodes on time.
One Degree of Separation: Akira and Keisuke were both from the same orphanage because they were both part of the same experiment that produced Nano. Working on that experiment was Emma, who sent Akira to Toshima. Her fellow researchers included Motomi and Arbitro. Arbitro pretty much runs Vischio, which distributes the Nano-produced drug Line, but the official boss, Il Re, is actually Shiki, who is Rin's brother.
Psycho Serum: Line, which casuses increased strength and speed along with occasional raving homicidal insanity. Self-limiting, as the higher the concentration percentage, the more likely it will kill the user.
Psychopathic Manchild: Gunji. n also has shades of this. "Would you still hold my hand now that it's been drenched in so much blood?"
Purple Eyes: Nano; although sometimes they look more blue.
Running Gag: The more humorous drama CDs always end badly for Akira and at least four of them end with him being molested by Shiki.
Rape Is Love: Averted on Keisuke's route. Akira figures out his feelings because-for the first time-he is completely separated from Keisuke. Also, the scene later implies he is still traumatized by what happened before.
Akira towards Shiki for Keisuke's death at the end of the anime.
This is also Rin's reason for coming to Toshima; to avenge his fallen team mates by killing Shiki.
Reflective Eyes: In the first episode of the anime, there are two seperate shots where Shiki and Akira's eyes are reflected in the other's.
Road Cone: Par for the course, as in most visual novels. And as with most visual novel-based adaptations, the anime did a little bit of cut-and-paste work. The Unpleasable Fanbase, of course, wanked.
Sadistic Choice: If Akira lets go of Takeru's hand and goes right, he'll run into Kiriwar, get raped, and killed. Going left will result in a run-in with Gunji who will do the same thing. Pick your poison.
Scandalgate: Somehow, this series got caught up in "Oreimogate", as it was temporarily pulled off of ANN's servers as a result of the leakage of Episode 2 of Oreimo.
Scenery Gorn: Wouldn't be a Nitro product without it! Also DUTCH ANGLES DUTCH ANGLES EVERY GODDAMN WHERE.
Screw Destiny: Akira refuses to follow Nano's apathy due to the belief he can change what happens in the future.
Sex Is Violence: Shiki's preferred method of pummelling Akira into submission.
Sex Slave: Arbitro likes to produce these. Also, Akira to Shiki in one of the latter's route.
Ship Sinking: In the anime Keisuke/Akira was sunk when Shiki killed him. That saying, some fans had abandoned the Shiki/Akira pairing as a result.
Ship Tease: The anime in particular seems to be hinting at the potential love interests of Akira. The anime seems to slide toward Keisuke/Akira though especially in Episode 9. Happens again in episode 11 but the pairing has officially sunk.
Akira has shades of this though he mainly falls under Not So Stoic.
Don't forget Nano!
Taste the Rainbow: As with most BL games. Akira's the sane guy/audience surrogate, Keisuke's the nice guy, Rin the young energetic guy, Motomi the old sensible one, Shiki the Bastard Boyfriend, the Executioners who are brutal, Arbitro with his weird fetishes and Nano the quiet one with Hidden Depths.
Terms of Endangerment: Gunji has nicknames for practically everyone; Ji-ji (old man) for Kiriwar, Papa for Arbitro, and Shikiti for Shiki. However, the best example of this trope is when he starts calling Akira neko-chan (kitty or kitten).
"World of Cardboard" Speech: Akira to Keisuke during their last confrontation, admitting he took their friendship for granted and he wants both of them to leave Toshima together. It doesn't work, unfortunately.
World War III: Starts before the game storyline causing Japan to be split into two zones. Although the game takes place during the war, this is hardly mentioned until the end.
Yandere: Keisuke as a result of not having his feelings toward Akira being acknowledged as well as the effects of Line making him insane. Whether he snaps out of it or not depends on the route. In the anime though, he snaps out of it and reverts back to his normal self.