The Danganronpa series has one thing that truly makes it stand out in the adventure-visual novel department: insane and over-the-top execution scenes. Yes, it’s true that these show scenes of young adults (high school kids) getting killed, so it’s safe to assume that some might want to turn away.
In an interview with NISA Europe, creator and scenario writer Kazutaka Kodaka explains how he approaches these execution scenes from the first title in the series Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc to the newest Danganronpa V3.
When I was working on Danganronpa 1, I was working with one other person for the execution scenes, and that other person and I got along pretty well and had pretty good chemistry, but he actually left the company before Danganronpa 2.
For Danganronpa 2, from chapters 1 to 4 I let someone else handle those, but for chapter 5 I did everything. In Japan, we got told that chapters 1 to 4 were kind of mediocre, but chapter 5 was back to its roots.
I didn’t want this to happen in Danganronpa V3 so I’ve done all of the execution scenes by myself in Danganronpa V3 and I’ve been getting told that these are perhaps some of the darkest executions I’ve made. So I’m very happy with what I’ve created.
Furthermore, Kodaka-san says, “When I’m creating the execution scenes I really think of incorporating an idea where it would draw people to want to watch it.” and adds, “Instead of, ‘Oh it’s an execution scene, I don’t want to see it,’ and look away.”
When pressed about how he gets the player to look at the screen, Kodaka-san replies, “I make it so that there is one element that would draw them in, either it’s something cute, something really horrible, or make it into a dark joke.”
So it seems like fans are in for a few more of these scenes that the creator is trying his best to make sure don’t close their eyes, as hard for some as that may be.
Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony is coming to PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, and PC in North America on September 26 and Europe on September 29.
In case you want to know more, NISA’s localization team recently explained how they approached Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony’s translation. Also, DualShockers interviewed Kodaka-san and gained more insight on his approach to game scenarios.