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Video Game / Paranoiac

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Paranoiac is a freeware Survival Horror Role-Playing Game made in Wolf RPG Editor, by Uri, who also made The Crooked Man and Mermaid Swamp.

In Paranoiac, you play as Miki Takamura, who has moved into the house that belonged to her aunt. However, every night she gets attacked by a strange monster, and while all this is going on her mother grows more distant from her and even her neighbor from across the street starts doubting her sanity...


There is an English translation here.

In June 2019, a remake of the game has been released. There are multiple translations available, including English, Korean, Spanish, Polish, and Chinese.

Paranoiac provides examples of:

  • Bittersweet Ending: The good ending has Miki being diagnosed with schizophrenia, but the hauntings stop and she finally comes to terms with her aunt's death. She decides she's going to move home to try and help her mother cope with her own disorder, but promises to return to the house soon.
  • Daylight Horror: Whilst the monster only appears at night, some rather bizarre and creepy things happen during the day too.
  • Downer Ending: The bad ending, which results in Miki dying, still feeling depressed and guilty over her aunt's suicide.
  • Escape Sequence: Every night, the monster attacks and Miki must hide somewhere away from it.
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  • Fake Difficulty: The fact that only one hiding spot works every night, and which one it is changes.
  • Freudian Excuse: Miki has a rather strained relationship with her mother. First off, they both suffer from mental illness, which affects them negatively. Second, when Miki reports anything about the house, her mother thinks she's crazy and dismisses her claims. Finally, when Miki receives a call from her mother and tells her that she's being chased by a monster, she laughs at her and tells her not to call her again. Her mother has hysteria (nowadays known as conversion disorder) which causes her to drive her family away from her.
  • Girls Love Stuffed Animals: This is actually an important plot point. It's revealed that Miki's aunt Saeki had offered to make her a stuffed animal, as she was already making lots of toys for her unborn baby, who was ultimately stillborn. Even though Miki was in high school, she insisted she would love to have a stuffed animal from her aunt, though in the event of her aunt's tragic death, she had forgotten this happy memory. In the good ending, Miki finds a teddy bear with her name embroidered on the foot, causing her to remember that day. As a result, she's able to remember that she and her aunt did love each other and is able to start letting go of the guilt she feels over Saeki's death.
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  • Haunted House: Aunt Saeki's house, the primary setting of the game. Maybe...
  • Jump Scare: Many examples, most notably if the monster finds your hiding spot.
  • Last-Second Ending Choice: A choice near the end decides whether you get the good ending or the bad ending.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: You only win the game by claiming the monster is real, but you later discover that Miki has schizophrenia.
  • Missing Time: Near the end of the game, Miki stays the night at Shinji's apartment because she doesn't want to be alone in the house. However, the next time she wakes up, she's back in the house's spare bedroom, having no idea how she got there. She presumes Shinji took her back while she was sleeping. Upon confronting Shinji about it, he reveals that in the middle of the night, she woke up, told Shinji she was going back to the house and would be fine now. Miki has absolutely no memory of doing this and understandably freaks out.
  • Multiple Endings: There are two.
    • Bad Ending: Miki decides she must be delusional. When confronted by the monster one last time, she stands there insisting it isn't real instead of running like she has been. She is found dead the next morning.
    • Good Ending: Miki insists the monster's real. When confronted by the monster one last time, she runs like usual and ends up in the toy room with nowhere to run. Then she realizes the monster was her aunt this whole time, and recalls some fond memories before asking her aunt's forgiveness. Her aunt apparently hugs her, which causes Miki to pass out, but Miki is fine the next morning and is able to face life with renewed vigor.
      • The Bonus Room in the 2019 remake reveals that Miki returns to the house two years after being in therapy. Also Shinji waits for her all these years and reunites with her.
  • Nightmare Face: The monster has one.
  • No Antagonist: Unusually for a horror game, it turns out the monster is benevolent and misunderstood, if it’s even real and the 2019 remake implies it represents the guilt that people feel (as Shinji starts seeing it too in the Bad Ending). The closest thing the game has to a true villain is Miki’s mother, who doesn’t have a direct hand in the plot.
  • One-Hit Kill: If the monster catches you, it results in an instant game over. The remake adds a health meter.
  • Psychological Horror: Paranoiac is this overlapped with Survival Horror, with grief and mental illness playing large roles in the plot. After moving into her late aunt's house, Miki finds herself being stalked by a monster every night, along with other strange and spooky occurrences, but it soon becomes obvious the underlying conflict is around Miki battling with depression and guilt over her aunt's death. It's even suggested that the monster may not actually be real; real or not, it's implied to represent Miki's inner turmoil and struggle.
  • The Reveal: It turns out that the monster chasing Miki throughout the game is Miki's dead aunt wanting to reconcile with her niece. This happens if the player chooses to believe that the monster is real.
  • Run or Die: Each night, when faced with the monster, Miki must run and find the correct hiding place to survive, as she has no way of fighting back.
  • Ship Tease: One might think that Shinji and Miki have feelings for each other. Miki appreciates his company and Word of God has confirmed Shinji does indeed have a crush on her.
  • Stalker Without a Crush: The monster relentlessly stalks Miki every night.
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: Not only is Miki at least a little insane, it runs in the family, meaning for all we know the monster might really be a hallucination after all.
  • Tragic Stillbirth: Saeki's baby being stillborn was the catalyst for her mental breakdown and many of the subsequent events of the game.
  • Trial-and-Error Gameplay: Every night, there are several hiding places to be found but only one of them is viable. Of the ones that aren't, two of them lead to you dying and the ones that don't still lead you to getting found, which means you must keep running again.
  • Video Game Remake: The game received a remake in 2019, which has more detailed graphics and an expanded story, though it otherwise sticks very closely to the original.
  • Your Door Was Open: On two occasions, Shinji discovers Miki unconscious somewhere on her property because she didn't come to the door when he came to call, so he just came right in.
  • You Shouldn't Know This Already: Using the code for the computer before you learn it, will cause the game to think you're in the final day already. This might seem like a good thing until you realize that any rooms you didn't open will remain locked.

Tropes specific to the 2019 remake

  • Adaptational Attractiveness: The monster looks far less hideous; rather than a bloody, half-rotted skeleton, it resembles a blurry humanoid figure with a broken neck.
  • Adaptational Angst Upgrade:
    • Not that Miki wasn't angst-ridden (and for good reason) in the original game, but in the remake she is more openly distraught, often breaking down crying, privately fretting about things, experiencing angry outbursts and mood-swings. Her mounting paranoia is a lot more pronounced too; near the end she even starts accusing Shinji of calling her crazy behind her back not unlike her late aunt.
    • In the original bad ending, we don't know how Shinji reacted to finding Miki dead. Here, we learn that he is ridden with guilt and starts seeing the monster as well.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy:
    • Downplayed. Miki's mother (whose full name is Minako Takamura) is still an insensitive jerkass, but she comes off as slightly more reasonable; rather than constantly going on rants, she's mostly just blunt and dismissive.
    • Downplayed with Shinji too as he was always a nice guy but the remake explains some of his more forceful moments in the original game. In the original game, he entered Miki's house when she wasn't answering to discover her unconcious. In the remake, he went to ask her out for dinner and found her in the well after she screamed his name.
  • Anger Born of Worry: Near the end of the game, Shinji shouts at Miki to get her to calm down and shouts her name to get her attention.
  • Art Evolution: The remake has more detailed graphics and environments, the sprites have more complex animations and the rooms, furniture and people are more proportionally-sized to each other. The drawn portraits for the characters when they're speaking are also more detailed and feature a wider variety of expressions.
  • Ascended Fridge Horror: Some players of the original game suggested that if the monster were actually just a figment of Miki's troubled imagination, then in the bad ending Miki's death was not caused by the monster, but was actually suicide. In the bad ending of the remake, it's actually stated in the newspaper clipping that Miki's death is a suspected suicide, though it's not confirmed either way.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: In the bad ending Miki's body is found covered in blood and gouged wounds. It's suspected to be a suicide, though it's left rather ambiguous and Shinji, who found the body, says it looked more like a monster attacked her. Whether or not it was the monster that killed her or an extreme case of self-harm, it's a nasty way to go.
  • Get Out!: If Miki insists the monster is not a delusion, she screams this at Shinji after he still doesn't believe her.
  • It's All My Fault: In the bad ending, Shinji starts blaming himself for Miki's death, believing he should've done more to help her. Then the monster appears behind him...
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: The two policemen Miki goes to for help after she's chased by the monster through town don't believe her, but they show her sympathy and insist she stays at the police station for the night, saying they can't just let her go home alone.
  • Troubled Fetal Position: Poor Miki assumes this pose a number of times throughout the game when she feels overwhelmed (the updated graphics allow for this).


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