We are being watched.
The government has a secret system - a machine - that spies on you every hour of every day. I know, because I built it. I designed the machine to detect acts of terror, but it sees everything, violent crimes involving ordinary people - people like you. The government considers these people irrelevant, but we dont.
Victim, or perpetrator If your number is up, well find you.
Exec- Save Them is a closed Tumblr and Discord-based Danganronpa roleplay group, drawing inspiration from the TV series Person Of Interest. When twenty students are locked in an unknown facility, and are forced to kill each other off in order to escape, all seems lost, but then a pay phone rings... On the other end, a mechanized voice parrots numbers back at them. The same amount of numbers each time. Enough numbers... to match a student ID?
What could they mean? Given a student ID, can you protect your classmates? Or will you be forced to watch them die, and go to trial to find their killer? The choice is yours, whether to execute...or save them.
How can you even escape? What with a thousand eyes watching, and a million ears listening...
Exec- Save Them demonstrates these examples of tropes:
- A Student Body Divided
- Amateur Sleuth: Downplayed in certain cases, played straight for the most part, averted in the case of Isamu the Private Investigator and Yuuna the Forensic Pathologist.
- Anyone Can Die: Even being a roleplay, any of the characters can be a victim or culprit. The only hint comes from the calls that they get from an unknown source shortly after the motive, giving them the ID number of someone involved with the next case.
- Anxiety Dreams: The 4th motive. Control fills the facility with a gas that, once they enter REM sleep, gives them nightmares of their greatest fears.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Nami brings up that Control likely acquired all of the books in the library illegally since a number of them are unpublished research papers. Add that to his list of crimes, along with kidnapping 20 students, forcing them to kill one another, making executions for those who take the bait and drugging them.
- Big Brother Is Watching: What, you think no one is watching them murder each other?
- Up to Eleven: And to crank it up a notch, the people watching are also able to transmit information regarding a student who may be involved in the next murder to some or all of the remaining students. The only problem is that the information may never be enough.
- Black-and-Grey Morality: Arguably, the whole thing. In order to escape, you have to kill someone. If you vote for the culprit during the trial, you have a hand in their death. If you don't vote for the culprit, you're adding to the chances of someone innocent being killed. No one will escape this game without some guilt on their shoulders.
- Body of the Week: Supposedly, every chapter results in at least one death that the remaining students have to investigate. However, this can be Averted if the students are able to foil the murder plot of the chapter in-character.
- Demonstrated as early as the very first chapter, which goes by without a murder.
- Makes its triumphant return in Chapter 5, and Inverted with Sayuri's resurrection, albeit as an AI without a physical body. No one's complaining though.
- Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: Tohru attempts to tell Ryuu to tell a joke in the group messenger.
- Breather Episode: Chapter 5. Not only does no murder occur thanks to Ulrich concocting a cure to their unfortunate not-rabies infection, Sayuri is brought Back from the Dead and one of the biggest rivalries in the game thus far (Yuuna and Neo) bury the hatchet between them. Considering this is the last chapter before the Mastermind chapter, it's very well-deserved.
- Characters Dropping Like Flies
- Clear My Name/Clear Their Name: Happens whenever somebody is accused of the crime and fights the charges, or when their friends do their best to help them. Of course, the question of whether or not they're actually guilty is very real...
- Cruel and Unusual Death: The executions, which are tailor-made for each culprit. Usually, they either mock their Super High School Level talent or exploit their deepest fears, ensuring their punishment is as terrifying as possible. Occasionally, a murder victim also dies in a particularly horrible manner.
- Fate Worse than Death: A possible punishment for an innocent party in the event of a mistrial, if it's not outright death.
- Dark Secret: The second motive, with a twist; all of the characters were given a file with another students name on it. They could unzip it and see whose they have, and then choose whether or not to watch it. The catch? Half of them are lies made up by Control. What's to stop anyone from saying something that's true is a lie?
- Plus, a number of the secrets that came out were definitely dark in nature. Some career ruining. Some just very, very sad.
- Deadly Game
- Developing Doomed Characters: That's some to most of the characters. Good luck figuring out which ones they are before they die. They consist of:
- Shigemi Kiyono, SHSL School Band Member, Chapter 2 Victim
- Sayuri Sato, SHSL Gothic Metal Singer, Chapter 2 Victim. Subverted, Sayuri turns up alive again in Chapter 5 after Nami is able to save her as a backup copy and upload it.
- Aiko Starlight a.k.a Noriko Hanada, SHSL Magical Girl, Chapter 2 Killer
- Moriarty, a.k.a Yuuya Isara, SHSL Good Luck, Chapter 3 Victim.
- Isamu Ueda, SHSL Private Investigator, Chapter 3 Killer.
- Ryuunosuke Sakakibara, SHSL Acrobat, Chapter 4 Victim/Culprit.
- Nami Adachi, SHSL Psychologist, Chapter 4 Victim/Culprit.
- Died in Your Arms Tonight: Ryuu and Nami's bodies are found, with Nami embracing him...
- Dwindling Party: The game began with 20 students, and while they avoided a murder during the first chapter, people have steadily begun to die as the chapters go on.
- Dysfunction Junction: With twenty different characters, it's to be expected that something like this would happen. To what extent depends on the character in question...and the person playing them.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: But who knows how much the students will have to sacrifice to achieve it?
- Empty Chair Memorial: In the trial room, all students have a caged podium they must stand in. When a student dies, that podium remains, empty, as a reminder.
- Emotional Torque
- Everyone Is a Suspect: The objective of each trial is to find out who is the most suspicious. Extends to before each individual murder, when the students must attempt to figure out who the possible complicit person might be.
- Everyone Went to School Together: Unlike the source material, these students remember their times together at Hope's Peak. The difference is that many of them were not in the same class and only a handful had spoken sparingly before.
- Evidence Scavenger Hunt: Once a body is discovered, the surviving students, culprit included, are expected to investigate for evidence to prepare for the class trial where they will attempt to find the person behind the crime.
- Fire-Forged Friends: Often, relationships (both platonic and possibly romantic) are formed due to the stress everyone is put under and the bonds created thusly.
- Gilded Cage: While they are trapped in the facility, they have no shortage of food, classrooms full of objects to learn with, instruments, board games, a library, and apartments they share. Were they not being forced to kill one another, it'd be a nice place to board.
- Heroic BSoD: After the Chapter 4 death, Natacha, Gyuhui, and Isabella have one of these upon seeing Ryuu and Nami are dead.
- Hidden Depths: There are more to every character than meets the eye - it's just that some of them are rather open to telling others their backstories or feelings, and others keep it under such a careful lock and key that no one has unearthed it, despite it being 5 chapters into the game.
- Hope Spot: They all got this when, after Gyuhui's number was called, the consequential guarding from their roommates prevented a murder. Hey, we can really do this! We can avoid anyone dying! It's possible, we just have to work together! And they have failed to protect anyone ever since, until Chapter 5 finally grants them that reprieve.
- Horrible Judge of Character: A few of them tend to gloss over the more concerning traits their classmates possess.
- Example: Those who totally brush over Yuuna's casual confession that she has murdered someone before the game. Ryuu is very guilty of this, at least when it comes to Yuuna.
- Humans Are Flawed
- Involuntary Battle to the Death
- Kangaroo Court: Only two characters have any sort of background that might give them a step up in a court setting. They are the chapter 3 culprit, Isamu, and Yuuna.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Considering its premise and the fact that it's a roleplay, the characters are not above poking fun at the supposed absurdity of their circumstances.
- Loophole Abuse: Done by Control, after the chapter 3 trial. He reveals that, had they let Isamu get away with it and executed someone innocent at random, Control would have granted Isamu's wish of freedom by killing them all.
- Mystery of the Week: There's a new murder every two-three weeks in real life, and every half a week or so in-game. It can, however be prevented, as in the case with the very first chapter.
- Pink Blood
- Poor Communication Kills: Chapter 3 gives a big case of this; Isamu and Moriarty make their plan to have the former kill the latter and convince the remaining students to execute another student at random. A few students state that the plan may have worked, or they could have been convinced not to do it, have the two of them discussed it with even a small group.
- This can also go with any trial; if someone throws them off with something that isn't as important as they think it is, the time limit will reach its end, and someone innocent may die.
- Public Execution: If a killer is caught, they are dragged away to a cruel execution that usually causes them a lot of emotional and physical suffering before they are finally killed.
- Red Herring: Par for the course in a murder mystery. There's usually one or two big ones every case.
- 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.
- Shout-Out: May contain references to popular culture, internet phenomena and call-backs to previous games the muns and their muses have been in.
- Surprise Creepy: Some of the students are creepy, and that isn't shocking; they're meant to be. It's the few times the nice ones bring out those eerie sprites or out of character dialogue that is particularly jarring.
- Teen Genius: All the students to some extent. They were initially accepted into Hope's Peak for being the best in their age bracket at what they do.
- Tonight, Someone Dies: Specifically, every couple of weeks, someone will be murdered. Subverted in the fact that each murder can be prevented through a series of specific conditions.
- Translation Convention: All characters are presumed to be speaking Japanese unless otherwise noted, even though the game is written in English.
- Win Your Freedom: Students are informed that escape is possible; they just have to get away with murder.
- You Can't Go Home Again