Originally released for PSP in 2010, Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc sees Makoto Naegi selected to attend Hope’s Peak Academy, a special high school for students who are the ultimate talent in a particular field. Makoto is a seemingly unremarkable person, though, and his “talent” is winning a lottery to attend the school—making him the “Ultimate Lucky Student”.
But Hope’s Peak is far from what it’s claimed to be. Upon arrival, the students all find themselves locked inside the school, with a maniacal black-and-white teddy bear called Monokuma announcing that the only way to escape is to kill one of the other students and successfully evade conviction when tried for murder before their peers.
It’s a bizarre premise that lends itself to plenty of humour, drama, and biting social commentary—think Battle Royale, only more twisted and offbeat. (Indeed, while people love to throw “battle royale” around to describe games that superficially mimic Battle Royale‘s killing game, I’d say Danganronpa is the only game series that holds a candle to Takashi Kōkun’s iconic novel and the film it inspired.)
Danganronpa also takes some interesting approaches to puzzles and action. The game largely functions like a typically visual novel with some light puzzle-solving elements as you investigate each murder, but the trials throw up some creative, clever mini-games—think literally shooting holes in a person’s argument by gunning down their words in a shooting gallery.
For Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc Anniversary Edition, Spike Chunsoft has reworked the control scheme to suit mobile devices, as well as some tweaks to things like the map jumping function. Galleries of special events, character illustrations, and promotional illustrations from the official art book can also be found within the game.
Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc Anniversary Edition is available through the App Store (for USD $15.99 / NZD $27.99) and Google Play (USD $17.99 / NZD $33.99). Spike Chunsoft also has plans to release mobile versions of Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair and Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony.