Spike Chunsoft has released more information on the upcoming Danganronpa S: Ultimate Summer Camp mini-game-turned-full-game, specifically regarding the non-canonical spin-off’s plot, and giving more information on its monetary plans.
The following contains references to major plot points in the Danganronpa series:
From the sound of it, Ultimate Summer Camp is smashing together different aspects of the main games outside of the context of Danganronpa’s usual murder mystery. This will be a way for it to have its characters exist in a more peaceful setting, while also getting into the weird, world-breaking stuff the entire thing is predicated on.
Spike Chunsoft says the prologue will begin with Komaru Naegi, protagonist of Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls, arriving at Hope’s Peak Academy, the school at the center of the entire series. She’s been on a field trip in Towa City, which was the source of some terrible events in her game, but here she’s taking part in a Talent Development Camp, a 50-day event for students and family members of Hope’s Peak Academy. The entire thing is set on Jabberwock Island within the Neo World Program, the virtual reality from Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair. The Danganronpa V3 mascots known as the Monokubs are in the program to help the kids make the most of their time on Jabberwock Island, but the entire thing is taken over by series antagonist Monokuma, who sets dangerous enemies lose on the island.
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All of the above facilitates social sim elements, turn-based battles, and unlocking playable characters. The characters are unlocked through a gacha mechanic, which can either be used with in-game currency or circumvented entirely through real-world money. Alongside unlocking the characters themselves, you can also acquire “Hype Cards,” which upgrade specific characters and come with different art. As such, unlocking a character once isn’t necessarily the end of you trying to get the most out of them, as each can be upgraded nine times with nine different Hype Cards. This is where the gears of Danganronpa S’ microtransactions start to turn, as you can buy cards outright through buying card vouchers on the eShop. The prices are as follows:
- 1 card = $0.99
- A one-time purchase of 3 cards = $0.99
- All subsequent 3 card purchases = $1.99
- 5 cards = $2.99
For a franchise that once satirized the video game industry’s endless grind for monetary gain, Danganronpa dipping into microtransactions remains questionable and worth interrogating, and I’m curious as to how the drop rates of certain characters or cards might push people into falling back on these microtransactions when Danganronpa S: Ultimate Summer Camp launches on Switch alongside the rest of the series’ visual novels as part of Danganronpa Decadence on December 3.
At the end of the post, Spike Chunsoft revealed the Danganronpa series has shipped over five million units. On top of this, Spike Chunsoft says it will be further expanding the Danganronpa series with “games in various genres and more.” Whether that comes in the form of a new setting or a continuation of the Hope’s Peak Academy story is unclear. Whatever the case may be, I hope the series isn’t losing sight of what it put forth in Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony.