Warning! All spoilers below are unmarked.
It's virtually impossible to list tropes for this series without spoiling everything or creating Self-Fulfilling Spoilers because of the large amount of twists and Murder Mystery-related tropes it contains.
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Works with their own YMMV pages:
YMMV tropes that apply to the franchise as a whole:
- Archive Panic: Not an extreme example, but the franchise has 4 video games, 2 animes and about 20 official mangas, so checking out all of them will take quite a long time.
- Better as a Let's Play: The games are extremely popular Let's Plays; in fact, the series gained a western fanbase (and eventual English releases) because of a Let's Play on the Something Awful forums. This owes to the series' unique blend of Dating Sim and murder mystery, so it's fun to watch players solve the cases... and even more fun to watch players' inevitable despair when a character they get attached to dies or is a case's culprit.
- Complete Monster:
- Junko Enoshima sates her obsession with despair by seeking to crush hope in all of humanity. To this end, Junko uses her analytical abilities to sadistically and meticulously manipulate the students of Hope's Peak Academy, leading her classmates to murder each other in droves; brainwashing many others as they witness the atrocity; kidnapping a kind-hearted teacher to brainwash her into following Junko's cruel plans; cruelly crushing anyone in her way, eventually leading to mass killings and suicides amongst students and even a global societal collapse. In the horrific dystopian new world, Junko continues to amuse herself by tormenting a group of Hope's Peak students after wiping their memories, forcing them into a "game" where they must betray and murder each other, broadcasting it to demoralize the population at large, even killing her own sister on a whim. When discovered, Junko happily asserts her devotion to causing suffering and, when she fails to break the wills of her victims, spitefully kills herself to refuse their attempts to offer her redemption, aroused even at the feeling of her own despair. Creating an Artificial Intelligence and corrupting the already-unstable Warriors of Hope as her successors to continue her murder game even after her own death, Junko cements herself as a monstrous psychopath, so warped the only thing she adored was misery, be that others' or even her own.
- Killer Killer:
- Rei Shimizu is a nurse who secretly sacrificed her patients to fulfill her morbid obsession. An addict of parasites, Rei would implant their eggs on victims to breed them in a painful and slow process that lasted for a year, before killing them to extract the parasites. When her latest victim Hana was investigated, Rei played innocent, while secretly trying to kill another patient she has also placed parasite eggs on. When Takumi managed to figure her out and stop her attempted murder, Rei reveals to him her operation, showing her massive collection of parasites she extracted from previous victims before merging with them to try killing Takumi and use his corpse as another parasite nest.
- Ted Chikatilo, known as the "Million Killer", is a member of Ultimate Despair and an infamous bomber who's one of Future Foundation's most wanted criminals. Owning the title of Ultimate Pyrotechnic, Chikatilo has a fascination with explosions and violence, using the Tragedy to his advantage to turn people into "beautiful fireworks". Responsible for a number of bombings and coming off his latest killing spree where he murdered a platoon of Future Foundation agents, turning one into one of his "art pieces", Chikatilo sets his sight on Killer Killer for bragging rights. Knowing Future Foundation was planning to lure him out, he tried to trick Takumi and Juzo, disguised as him, into fighting each other before coming out and attacking the two. When Takumi managed to thwart his attempt, Chikatilo became more aggressive, killing countless people around him, before trying to blow up Takumi, his partner Misaki and anyone around in a wide range explosion. A narcissist of carnage, Ted Chikatilo is one of the worst criminals in the world of Danganronpa.
- Disappointing Last Level: In general, the last trials in each of the games are not as well liked as some of the others, especially since the penultimate trials in the second and third games are considered among the best in the series. One common reason why people feel this way is because much of the final trials involve you listening to the Big Bad make (admittedly shocking) revelations about the plot rather than working to solve the mystery yourself, to say nothing of all the controversy about V3's ending.
- Dry Docking:
- Celestia Ludenberg. One of her more illustrious traits in why people consider her a character that can be fantasized about is her detailed gothic clothing, red eyes, smooth French accent, being a pointman in the first two trials, and her general need for a butler. Due to the natural attraction people have to her, community participants are deciding to create their own timelines in which Celestia is their most reliant friend or they are her submissive servant. This collective attraction may likely be due to them sympathising with her motivations, her using a layer of elegance and superiority to obfuscate the normalcy she deprecates herself for.
- Ibuki Mioda. Being the elaborative, enthusiastic, sly musician of abnormality she is, creating her own uniform to give herself an identity, she receives a heap of love from male players of Danganronpa. When compared to Celeste in terms of presentation, their moral codes seem represented as polar opposites, with Celeste being cold, manipulative, aggravated, and conniving, while Ibuki is open, enthusiastic, straightforward, and misunderstood.
- Epileptic Trees: After Spike Chunsoft posted this trailer for Danganronpa Decadence, many fans have begun to suspect that Danganronpa S isn't just a simple Lighter and Softer Beach Episode, but will instead contain a Surprise Creepy Genre Shift ala Doki Doki Literature Club!.
- Evil Is Sexy: Despite how monstrous and deranged she is, Junko Enoshima is still a famous fashion model, so this trope is only natural.
- Fandom-Enraging Misconception:
- Don't refer to Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony as Danganronpa 3 or get the two mixed up. Danganronpa 3 is the anime that culminates the Hope's Peak Academy saga, while Danganronpa V3 is the third main game in the series, and follows an entirely different storyline and setting.
- There's no Danganronpa V1 or Danganronpa V2. The first game is Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc and the second game is Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair. Danganronpa V3 is named like that in order to differenciate it from the Danganronpa 3 anime, as well as for an in-game reason.
- Assuming that the Image Song for Trigger Happy Havoc, "Saisei -rebuild-", is being sung by Nagito Komaeda or that the ending song of Goodbye Despair, "Shukkō -departure-", is performed by Makoto Naegi is enough to aggravate someone. Although both characters share Megumi Ogata as their voice actress, the former song is officially labeled as Makoto's signature song while the latter is considered to be Nagito's.
- Claiming that Chihiro is a trans girl will get you labeled as ignorant at best, and hateful at worst. It's only stated that Chihiro dressed up as a girl in order to avoid being bullied for not being masculine enough, not because he identified as such. In fact, Chihiro actually hates being treated like a girl, and doing so only worsened his insecurities.
- Fandom-Specific Plot:
- The scenario practically begs for fans to create their own killing game stories, very often in the form of text-based roleplays. Needless to say, there are countless such fanfics of immensely varying quality.
- Retellings of the games with a new list of killers, victims, and survivors, are very common; not so much out of dislike for canon material, but more because fans want to see how much can change with just one different killer or victim. The first case is usually the target point for the "split".
- Partially but not always as an extension of the above, you'll often find fics whose premise is changing the death of a particular character, with Mukuro, human Chiaki, and Kaede being the most common recipients.
- A "Talentswap AU" is a popular AU where some characters have a different Ultimate Talent than in canon, due to being a fun challenge for authors to fit the new talent into the characters' backstory and personality and a way to mix up the murders.
- Another common AU is a Role Swap AU, where either Class 77-B or the inmates are trapped in Hope's Peak Academy, Class 78 or the inmates are trapped on Jabberwock Island, and Class 77-B or Class 78 are trapped in a prison.
- Fan Work Only Fans: For quite awhile, anyone interested in the series who didn't speak Japanese was forced to make do with fan translations, Let's Plays, fic, and fanart. Now that the games have been localized, the franchise is much more accessible to those outside of Japan, though some tie-in novels and mangas still have yet to recieve official translations, so if you want to read those, you'll have to rely on fan efforts. On another note, the franchise is wildly popular with cosplayers, some of whom have never played the games, thanks to the extremely unique and fun character designs. You don't need to know the story to think Junko's costume is awesome, after all.
- Friendly Fandoms:
- With Persona 4, since they're both high-school set murder mysteries, have talking teddy bears, and some of the same voice actors.
- The Zero Escape series, which is also a visual novel series about a Deadly Game and solving an Ontological Mystery, and their creators merged.
- There is a lot of overlap between Danganronpa fans and fans of Ace Attorney, likely due to the similarities between each series. Both series are visual novels centered around collecting evidence and using that evidence to direct discussion in trials. Both series are murder mysteries where you piece together increasingly complicated murders to single out the culprit.
- With Your Turn to Die, as they're both visual novels about death games. In fact, it's widely agreed that a majority of the Your Turn to Die fandom came from the Danganronpa fandom.
- Many Danganronpa fans, especially those on Tumblr and Twitter, are also Homestuck fans, due to being another franchise with a huge cast that pits teenagers against each other in a deadly game.
- For a Western animation example, there's overlap with the Total Drama fandom, and it's common for crossovers to occur where the Immoral Reality Show format of Total Drama is amped up to the murderous levels presented in Danganronpa. It's also common to (ironically or not) draw comparisons between Monokuma and Chris McLean.
- Bizarrely enough, there has been a lot of overlap between the Danganronpa fandom and The New Order Last Days Of Europe, of all things, especially on the official TNO sub-Reddit. Also, there have been a lot of comparisons between Himmler and Junko and Sablin and Makoto from their respective franchises. It helps that Himmler is prone to plunging people into despair, albeit via totalitarianism rather than a desire for chaos within itself, while Sablin is a Hope Bringer to Russia if he remains idealistic. This eventually resulted in a fan made and dev-loved anime opening for TNO done in the style of Danganronpa 3's Despair Arc.
- Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The franchise as a whole is quite big in Germany, to the point that Danganronpa: The Animation got an official dub there.
- It Was His Sled:
- The identities of the Big Bads behind Monokuma in each installment are among the most discussed topics in the series and slip into fanart, with at least the first one becoming public knowledge, as Junko with Monokuma-themed accessories is promptly featured in artworks, including Danganronpa S: Ultimate Summer Camp's cover, giving away one of the reveals of Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc.
- Nagito's reputation as Memetic Troll and Memetic Psychopath precedes him, while in Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair his true personality isn't shown from the start.
- Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony pulling a Decoy Protagonist. While the game has plenty of controversies regarding the plot (among others), Shuichi at least being playable for most of the game instead of Kaede has become known even to non-fans.
- It's Popular, Now It Sucks!: The series basically got this treatment, especially with how many Lets Plays and content creators the series got. (Specific incidents from the Fandom with certain content creators for the series did not help matters.)
- LGBT Fanbase: The series has quite a large queer fanbase thanks to the amount of Ho Yay and Les Yay that a huge chunk of the students have among themselves (with one of the most noticeable examples being Kiyotaka and Mondo), some of the characters being heavily implied to be LGBT and some others acting in gender-defying ways.
- Love to Hate:
- Junko has so many resources and so many character revisions that people dissuade themselves from believing those traits of her exist and just decide to pay attention to the fact that she's a despair addict with a grand figure.
- While he could arguably be seen as part of what makes Junko this, as he's controlled by her in the first and second game, Monokuma's greater exposure in the series, namely the third game where Junko's nowhere in sight, makes him this. He's a Sadistic Teddy Bear who makes references to just about anything, and constantly Crosses the Line Twice with his harassment and execution of the students, but fans tend to love him simply for how over-the-top he is about it.
- Magnificent Bastard:
- Nagito Komaeda is the "Ultimate Lucky Student", and a very cunning young man who believes all bad luck is destined to be offset by good luck. Nagito's plans begin in Goodbye Despair by setting up a clever murder plot, and abets the true killer Teruteru Hanamura, so he can see whose hope shines brightest. Throughout the game, Nagito becomes a great ally to Hajime Hinata, who, although wary of him, can't help but respect his intellect, with him having solved the murders long before Hajime manages to. After finding out his friends are members of the Ultimate Despair, Nagito starts to distrust, despite telling Hajime he likes and respects him as a friend. Setting up his own murder in Chapter 5 of Goodbye Despair so only the traitor can survive, Nagito successfully weeds out the Future Foundation traitor amongst the class, and they are subsequently executed. In the end, while Hajime doesn't quite understand Nagito, he accepts him as a useful ally and Nagito's eventual death genuinely resounds with everyone.
- Gundham Tanaka is the "Ultimate Breeder" and an overdramatic chuunibyou who hides a devious mind behind his theatrics, performing one of the most complex murders in the Killing Game as the blackened of Chapter 4. Trapped in the Funhouse with the threat of starvation, Gundham is against the group's choice to starve and begins plotting his own murder, uncovering and taking advantage the secret of the Funhouse to set a death trap difficult to trace back to him. Targeting Nekomaru, Gundham sets up the clocks to isolate him so he can battle him to the death, immobilizing him by using his hamsters before putting him in the death trap to fall to his death while he sets-up an alibi for himself, only being figured out due to circumstances out of his control. When proven guilty, Gundham respectfully confesses his side and uses his last words to encourage the group to not give up on life and comforting Sonia, finally heading to his execution where he saves his hamsters one last time before dying with a smile.
- Most Wonderful Sound: "No, that's wrong!", or "Sore wa chigau yo!" in the Japanese version. Very much the franchise's equivalent of "Objection!" and always fun to hear.
- Narm Charm: Danganronpa has this charm of awkwardness with Monokuma's antics being strange in his own psychopathic way. An example of this: the game switches between the grieving of the cast to the music of a miniature game/Monokuma being himself very randomly, like an attempt to cause Mood Whiplash for the viewer.
- Obscure Popularity: The franchise is well-known by the masses of people who follow it rather than the general public.
- Paranoia Fuel: The whole premise of the franchise thrives on this, and the masterminds exploit it for all it's worth whenever they can.
- Popular with Furries: Monokuma, Usami/Monomi, and to a lesser extent the Monokubs all have a notable furry following.
- Praising Shows You Don't Watch: At the franchise's beginning, a good portion of its Western praisers haven't played the games. Since none of its works had releases outside of Japan at the time, it was pretty unknown until a Let's Play of Trigger Happy Havoc made it popular. Despite a fan-translated English patch, The Animation was as far as many fans went. However, once the first two main games were officially released in the West through Steam, the problems were mostly remedied.
- Theme Pairing: It is not uncommon for fans to pair characters together that have similar ultimate talents or personalities. Some examples include:
- Kazuichi Soda and Miu Iruma (Both have ultimate talents related to building things and working with machines).
- Kaede, Ibuki, and/or Sayaka (All three have music related ultimate talents).
- Tsumugi and Hifumi (Both have ultimate talents relating to anime/manga and are both obsessed with it).
- Viewer Name Confusion: There has been a lot of confusion over whether Toko's alternate personality is named Genocide Jack, Genocide Jill or Genocider Sho. To explain, Genocide Jack is used by the characters before they learn who she really is, at which point it's changed to Genocide Jill in the English version. The Japanese version and the anime both refer to her as Genocider Sho, and some have spelled it as Syo. In summary, it's all correct.
Tropes with their own pages
Tropes with their own pages
- Alternative Character Interpretation
- Base-Breaking Character
- Broken Base
- Captain Obvious Reveal
- Draco in Leather Pants
- Ensemble Dark Horse
- Fanfic Fuel
- Fan Nickname
- Franchise Original Sin
- Harsher in Hindsight
- Heartwarming in Hindsight
- Hilarious in Hindsight
- Ho Yay
- It Was His Sled
- Jerkass Woobie
- Memetic Mutation
- Misaimed Fandom
- Never Live It Down
- No Yay
- Ron the Death Eater
- The Scrappy
- Scrappy Mechanic
- Ships That Pass in the Night
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot
- Unintentionally Unsympathetic
- Values Dissonance
- What an Idiot!
- The Woobie