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Roleplay / Astral Cabal

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Astral Cabal is a Tumblr Roleplay Group formed in February 2014 by Admin Roulette. It adapts the rules of Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc with occasional spins on the original game's approach. Its cast is made up of Super High School Levels, the elite of the elite students, just as the Visual Novel; but instead of taking place in a school, the group's games take place in other areas with completely different plots and meanings. The students find themselves confined within the area's restraints and are forced into a game of mutual killing hosted by none other than Monokuma, a demonic half-black half-white bear that's out to strike despair into the student's hearts. To escape their despairful shackles, those trapped must uncover the secrets of who carried out this operation and why they were put there in the first place before it's too late.

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Fun Fact: Admin Roulette takes her name from Russian Roulette, a lethal game of chance.


General Tropes Appearing In Astral Cabal:

  • A House Divided: Turned against each other, each student has to fend for their own as they try to escape the hell they've been put in.
  • Anyone Can Die: Every character has the same chances as any other to die; be it simply someone who had desired to kill, who was at the wrong end of the knife, or even the mastermind if discovered.
  • Bury Your Gays: As of chapter 8, all homosexual couples have had at least one half die.
  • Cast Full of Gay:
    • Two official same-sex couples have been confirmed, namely Jaz and Akemi (two women) as well as Nakunaru and Ginji (two men). Unfortunately, it's cut short in both cases: Jaz loses Akemi because Akemi's murdered in chapter 6, and Nakunaru and Ginji are both murdered in chapter 5.
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    • As of chapter 6, there's three, with Hirashi and Yasu (again, two males) being confirmed.
    • In Astral Blue, Exus Val and Shirogane "Rhythm" Katsumi become a couple in chapter 3; unfortunately, it is cut short when Exus Val is murdered in chapter 4.
  • Crapsack World: An example is in Astral Cabal's first session, Astral Moon Base & Academia. It takes place in Space— And, hey, how is that not the most eerie thing ever?
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Every execution appears to be more gory and/or more frightening than the original executions used in Dangan Ronpa.
  • Evidence Scavenger Hunt: Sloppy evidence is usually scattered around the student's confines. If the students can discover and piece together clues and evidence, they may be able to discover the culprit. Anything not discovered in the investigation period will remain lost and students will not be able to use any missing evidence during a trial.
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  • Kangaroo Court: With various disagreements and heated discussions, the court jumps back and forth, giving everybody an equal chance to participate and figure out who-dun-it.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Possibly averted with Hirashi and Honoka: Hirashi's pink to Honoka's blue.
  • Timed Mission: There is a certain time period set aside for all investigation to take place.

General Tropes Appearing In Game Sessions:

    Astral Moon Base & Academia 
  • Accidental Murder: A variant in chapter two: neither Akemi nor Valentina thought that Akemi assisting in Valentina's suicide would count as a murder. It did.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Both chapter four's murder and execution take this to a new level. The victim is found with her face cut beyond recognition and her heart cut out of her chest, and the execution sees the culprit's stomach being cut open with a bread knife, before being left to bleed to death.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall:
    • In his response to Jaz's question in the chapter one trial regarding accomplices, Monokuma muses that it's surely a little too early for accomplices, shouldn't that be saved for chapter three?
    • By Monokuma just before chapter two's trial starts, alluding to the week long break the group took due to the fact that many players would not be able to attend the trial the previous weekend.
  • Burial in Space: Monokuma implies that all the dead bodies are shot into space.
  • Catch-22 Dilemma:
    • The second motive, overlapping with Sadistic Choice. If no-one kills, two innocents will be executed. However if someone does kill, that also means two deaths- a murder and execution victim. Either way, two students will die to the motive. This eventually leads Valentina (and eventually Akemi) to try and Take a Third Option in order for there to be only one victim.
    • The fourth motive eventually turns into this: it starts with a threat to make the lights stay off permanently, but then turns into a threat to sic monsters to kill everyone unless a murder occurs.
  • Class Trip: Usami appears to bill the scenario as this for a little in her introduction, before dropping that entirely and telling the students that they're here forever.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Chapter 5's motive turns out to be a threat to do this. If nobody commits a murder soon, Monobear is going to take one of the students and torture them to death, and then once that student dies he'll do it to another student, and another, until somebody finally commits a murder.
  • Conditioned to Accept Horror: Students begin to reach this point as the game goes on.
  • Dead Guy on Display: Valentina's body was decorated with flowers by the culprit.
  • Denied Food as Punishment: Chapter seven's motive sees the announcement that the food and water supplies have been empty- and they'll stay empty for 200 years unless someone kills!
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Invoked by Monobear's chapter 8 motive; if someone manages to kill and get away with it, Monobear will grant immunity and protection to the loved one of the murderer's choice. The mods have since confirmed that Monobear will only grant this immunity if the murderer escapes; if the murderer is executed, their loved one doesn't get immunity. However, the mods also confirmed that the characters in-universe do not know this last part, since Monobear left out the "if you get away" and "if you're executed" qualifiers to make his motive more appealing.
  • History Repeats: In chapter four, the majority vote is once again for Lukas as it was in chapter two, for seeming like their most likely suspect. However, this time, he actually is the culprit.
  • Hope Spot: Presented during chapter six's execution: with their feet on fire, Nikki notices a lake and dives into it- only for it to not be filled with water, but oil.
  • Hostile Show Takeover: When Usami gathers all the kids to watch a movie, Monokuma interrupts before she can even start it and introduces the mutual killing.
  • I Have Your Wife: Chapter three's motive has Monokuma stating that everyone's families are missing, with the possibility of them being tortured or killed. Kill another student to find out what's happened to them!
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Chapter 1's motive is an appeal to this. Monobear tells the students that while they've been gone, they've been replaced. But not to worry, if one of them commits the "perfect murder", Monobear will guarantee that student's former status at the top again.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Akemi gets away with killing Valentina in chapter two, and while even she didn't believe she was a killer and felt guilty over the event, some students regarded her as this. However, she later becomes chapter six's victim.
    • Jaz later becomes one in chapter 7, getting away with the murder of Haruka due to the class voting for the victim on the grounds that they had no real lead for a suspect. Shika is chosen for execution instead. Unlike Akemi however, Jaz doesn't die later, playing this trope straight.
    • The final killer Ryouko also becomes one, surviving her trial for the murder of Yasu and Hirashi due to the class deciding to call a mastermind vote rather than try and catch the culprit.
  • Kill 'Em All: The chapter 4 motive is a threat to do this. It starts by threatening to merely turn the lights off permanently, but then there's an implied threat that monsters will be sent out to kill everyone unless a murder occurs. The chapter 6 motive is also a threat to kill 'em all; in this case, Monobear threatens to open all the hatches in the space station so everyone dies from lack of oxygen unless a murder occurs. The chapter 7 motive is similar, threatening to starve everyone to death by cutting off the food supply unless a murder occurs.
  • Make an Example of Them:
    • When Honoka is punished for breaking a rule, a picture of her being impaled is broadcast through the base.
    • There's an interesting subversion in chapter 3: Oolong is killed by Monobear for breaking a rule, but Monobear doesn't use him as an example of what happens when you break the rules, so the class doesn't even realize Oolong is dead until Ryouko notices someone's missing from the center of the courtroom, Max confirms that it's Oolong who's missing, and Aimé directly asks Monobear to confirm that Monobear killed Oolong.
  • Miscarriage of Justice: The first mistrial in chapter two sees Mayoi randomly selected for execution. The seventh trial is also an example, with Shika being randomly selected for execution.
  • Never Suicide: Assisted suicide, however, is another matter entirely.
  • Official Couple: A few: Ginji/Nakunaru, Jaz/Akemi, and Yasu/Hirashi.
  • Rule of Pool: Incredibly averted during chapter two's pool party.
  • Sadistic Choice:
    • In chapter six, either one of the students commits a murder, or Monobear opens all the air hatches so they'll all die eventually anyway.
    • The seventh motive: either the students all starve to death, or one of them commits a murder to get the food back.
  • Ship Sinking: Due to the nature of the roleplay, it's inevitable that death will come between ships, made canon or otherwise.
    • Chapter three sees the Accidental Kiss between Miwa and Mikazuki, only for whatever relationship that may have blossomed to be cut short when Miwa is murdered in chapter four.
    • Chapter four also sinks Lukas and Aimé, as Lukas is that chapter's killer.
    • Chapter five sees the deaths of Ginji and Nakunaru; a prominant ship since the beginning of the game. However, as they are both victims that chapter, they move into Together in Death.
    • Chapter six sees the sinking of the first canon ship, with one half left alive this time: Jaz and Akemi, with the latter being that chapter's victim.
    • Chapter eight sinks Yasu and Hirashi, having become official earlier in the game. However, since they are both victims, they move into Together in Death.
  • Shout-Out: Just before chapter 4's trial begins, there's a shout-out to "bronies." However, since the post is from Monobear's perspective, it's a mocking one, telling them that friendship isn't magic, given what usually happens in these trials.
  • Sympathetic Murderer: Several students feel this towards Naohiro in chapter three, after he murders in order to find out what happened to his loved one.
  • Title Drop: Shinju finds a newspaper which has an article referring to a group known as the 'Astral Cabal'.
  • Uncertain Doom: Ginji's gun malfunctions in the aftermath of chapter two's trial, setting him alight and leaving his status unknown. He later returns at the beginning of chapter four, having been in a coma and treated by Monomi.
  • Take Me Instead: A few students have offered themselves up for the more threat based motives, most notably Masayoshi due to his insistance on being a good 'team leader'.
    • Masayoshi also offered himself to be executed along with Jaz in the first mistrial, when it was revealed a random student would be executed. Neither of them were chosen; poor Mayoi was killed instead.
  • Taking the Heat: Several examples through the game so far, coming from Ginji, Haruka, and Miwa (though in Miwa's case, she was more doing it for shits and giggles rather than to cover for someone). Often overlaps with False Confession.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill
  • The Ketchup Test: Performed by a few students during chapter three's investigation to determine if that really is all blood on the body, though Toru takes the prize for this one- he actually puts some in his mouth.
    • It also occurs several other times during cases with substances that may or may not be blood. Spinda is a different example; he often actually refers to blood as ketchup.
  • You All Meet in an Inn: The students are all called to the dining hall by Usami for their first introduction, both to each other and their situation.

     Astral Black 
  • Accidental Murder: It's implied that the death of Aomi is this, by means of Sun-mi attempting to open the music box that contained a mastermind clue.
  • Call-Back:
    • The first trial brings the discussion of whether the culprit used makeup to cover up wounds. Astral Academia's third killer did just that, eventually prompting the same discussion in trial.
    • The Astral Cabal group first seen in Astral Academia appear again, directly speaking to the students this time by means of taking over the connection with the Monobear bot. It's also implied that the mutual killing game had happened again. From the speech of the Astral Cabal member speaking through the bot, it's suggested that they're a survivor of the first game; specifically, Jasmine 'Jaz' Hayes.
  • Catch-22 Dilemma: The sixth motive- either one student takes it upon themselves to murder another, or the entirety of the remaining student body drowns.
  • Cessation of Existence: The chapter 1 "motive" in Astral Black. Monobear threatens that if a murder doesn't occur soon, he'll start making students "disappear" one by one.
  • Dark Secret: The chapter 2 "motive" in Astral Black. Monobear threatens to reveal everyone's darkest secrets unless a murder occurs.
  • Duel to the Death: Chapter 3's murder case appears to be this at first, with both victims carrying bullet wounds and guns after dying within a minute of each other. However it's subverted; there was a third party responsible for both deaths.
  • I Have Your Wife: The chapter 3 "motive" in Astral Black. If a murder occurs, Monobear promises to find out who everyone would risk their lives for, and kill them all.
  • Karma Houdini: Ryouta becomes one in chapter six, getting away with murder due to the class choosing to call a mastermind vote rather than trying to catch that case's killer.
  • Kill 'Em All: The chapter 6 "motive" in Astral Black. Monobear threatens to flood the boat and use the ocean to kill all the students unless a murder occurs.
  • Loud of War: The chapter 4 "motive" in Astral Black. Monobear turns on some loud sirens, and refuses to shut them off unless a murder occurs.
  • Make an Example of Them: In the prologue, Monokoi breaks Hinako's leg after showing displeasure with his introduction of the mutual killing.
  • No Sympathy: No-one appears to show any sympathy or mercy towards chapter four's murderer whatsoever, after the revelation that prior to arriving at the sea centre he had killed and eaten sixteen people, all explained while eating the missing flesh from the victim right in front of the class!
  • Not Quite Dead: Revealed at endgame: the students who died over the course of the game were preserved as some kind of data, allowing them to return as holograms.
  • Official Couple:
    • Sun-mi and Keichi.
    • The mastermind of the sea centre is dating the mastermind of the snow centre mutual killing game.
  • The Plague: The chapter 5 "motive" in Astral Black is a threat to spread a disease around to make everyone sick unless a murder occurs; if a murder does occur, then Monobear will give them the daily medication he retrieved instead.
  • Talking to the Dead: Along with the oppertunity to talk to members of the other class, chapter five's introduction of transmissions centre allows the students to contact their dead classmates.
  • Under the Sea: Astral Black takes place in an ocean area called "Okeanos."

     Astral Blue 
  • Call-Back:
    • The Astral Cabal group first seen in Astral Academia appear again, directly speaking to the students this time by means of taking over the connection with the Monobear bot. It's also implied that the mutual killing game had happened again.
    • From the speech of the Astral Cabal member speaking through the bot, it's suggested that they're a survivor of the first game; specifically, Ryuzaburo 'Akuma' Shinozuka.
  • Career-Ending Injury: The chapter 1 "motive" in Astral Blue. Monobear threatens that if a murder doesn't occur soon, he'll choose a random student to have a limb broken, possibly ending the student's capacity to perform his/her/their SHSL talent.
  • Cosmic Retcon: The chapter 5 "motive" in Astral Blue is a promise that, if a student kills someone and gets away with it, that student gets to change one thing about that student's self or about their past. As Monobear explains, this could mean erasing a traumatic event, restoring a dead loved one, curing a disease that's haunted them, etc.
  • Dark Secret: The chapter 4 "motive" in Astral Blue, but with a twist: instead of each student being given his/her/their dark secret, they are each given someone else's dark secret, in hopes of motivating them to kill someone with an especially dark secret.
  • Easy Amnesia: The chapter 3 "motive" in Astral Blue. Monobear threatens to remove everyone's most important memories unless a murder occurs.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Nanako becomes one as early as chapter one after she gets away with killing Susumu. However it's later subverted when she becomes chapter three's victim.
    • Johannes becomes one, but doesn't suffer the same fate as Nanako- the class choose to call a mastermind vote during that case rather than try and discover the culprit.
  • Make an Example of Them:
    • In the prologue, Monokoi breaks Exusval's arm after showing displeasure with his introduction of the mutual killing.
    • Monobear tries this with Kazumi in chapter five's trial for standing up to him.
  • Miscarriage of Justice:
    • The very first trial ends this way, with Honoka being chosen for random execution.
    • The fifth trial, as the class correctly votes for one of the culprits, but gets the other one incorrect, so Monobear decides to execute two innocent students.
  • Never Suicide: While it's discussed that Harumi poisoned herself in chapter five, it doesn't turn out to be the case; she was murdered.
  • Official Couple:
    • Exusval and Shirogane.
    • The mastermind of the snow base is dating the mastermind of the sea centre mutual killing game.
  • Radio Silence: The chapter 6 "motive" in Astral Blue. Monobear freezes over the weather transmission station that can communicate with the dead, and refuses to unfreeze it unless a murder occurs.
  • Ship Sinking: Chapter four sees the sinking of Shirogane and Exusval, with the latter being that chapter's victim. However, Shirogane is later chosen randomly for execution, making them Together in Death.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Astral Blue takes place in an icy and snowy area called "Tountra".
  • Talking to the Dead: Along with the opportunity to talk to members of the other class, chapter five's introduction of transmissions centre allows the students to contact their dead classmates.
  • Uncertain Doom: When Atohi takes the blow for Kazumi in chapter five's trial, whether he survived or not is unknown until the next chapter.
  • You Wake Up in a Room: How Astral Blue begins. The students are caught in a snowstorm and pass out, but after someone reaches out a hand to them, they wake up in a warm room with a fireplace.
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