Doki Doki Literature Club Plus on Nintendo Switch
For most of the gaming world, the secret lies in the Doki Doki Literature Club. Between countless theories and reaction videos on YouTube and the viral world of mouth that spread when the game originally released in late 2017, there probably aren’t many people who haven’t. either A: experienced DDLC, or B: at least find out what the deal is after someone tells them about it. So Doki Doki Literature Club Plus should be strong enough to warrant a $ 15 reissue of a game that’s currently free on Steam.
Fortunately, Team Salvato and Serenity Forge arrived quite strong. Not only is the game now available on consoles, including the Handheld Switch, an important feature in and of itself, but the team has added some important and surprising new content to more than justify the $ 15 price tag, whether you’re a new player. or a returning player.
Spoiler Warning: This article will allude to the main plot details of the original game Doki Doki Literature Club. It is recommended that if you have not played the original game that you proceed to this review with caution or play it once before reading this review. It’s always free on Steam.
Just in case you missed the train the first time around, let’s quickly go back to the premise of the Doki Doki Literature Club’s main campaign.
You play as an unnamed main character (MC) who is actually a replacement for you and will tell much of the game. You live in a town near your childhood friend, Sayori, a pretty girl who is a member of the club. of school literature. She finally convinces you to join the club which is home to three other girls: Natsuki, Yuri and club president Monika.
Although initially reluctant, the MC gives in and joins the club, seeing it as an opportunity to get close to one of the girls by impressing her with your poetry writing skills. Between the long dialogues (this is an end-to-end visual novel) you will occasionally play a short mini-game where you “write” a poem by selecting words that you think are one. of the three romance options (Sayori, Natsuki, Yuri) will like.
You can find out what they like by paying close attention to their personalities which are very distinct from each other. For example, Yuri is calm, shy and mature and is a fan of long and complex novels; therefore she prefers complex words, as opposed to Natsuki who likes “cute” things, and Sayori who is emotional and prefers words related to emotions, whether happy or sad.
That’s about as far as DDLC goes when it comes to gameplay, and therefore the first or two hours of DDLC Plus’s main campaign aren’t particularly exciting, even by visual novel standards. . The writing is a bit squeaky and the characters are overdone. However, as many would come to learn in 2017, this is all a setup for the heart of the story.
As the story progresses, it becomes evident that the characters are getting a bit … off balance, and one by one the Doki girls start showing signs of serious psychological issues that end up leading to some seriously wasted deaths and losses. scary moments.
The game itself will also start to change. The characters start to wander off, horrific poems and artwork will appear onscreen, and the dialogue both in appearance and in substance begins to go crazy. It all ends with a final fourth wall breaking moment where the player will actually have to access the game files and make changes in order to try and regain control of a game that has gone completely insane at this point.
Doki Doki Literature Club Plus retains all that experience, even in console versions. Personally, I haven’t noticed any major changes in the story. There might have been a few small dialogue changes that went under my radar, but according to my accounts, the main campaign is actually exactly the same as since the original version released on PC.
The original experience is almost perfect and reliving it, especially if you haven’t played in a while, is always a worthwhile effort. Although, obviously, I remember the big revelations, but reliving some of the smaller but still crazy and creepy moments like Yuri’s eye drifting away, Sayori and Natsuki’s terrifying final poem suddenly gaining realistic teeth and eyes. empty, it was like the first time since it was so long since I last played.
However, if you were expecting some major changes to the main story, like a slightly more detailed section of Natsuki Act 2 – which I’ve seen mentioned quite often over the years – that doesn’t seem to be the case. If there were any changes to the dialogue or story, they were definitely not major and were subtle enough to at least slip under my radar.
Fortunately, there is significant help from the new story content in the form of side stories. The side stories in DDLC Plus are a total of 180 from the original game. For starters, it’s not horror at all, and the writing fits a cohesive theme, rather than changing to suit the needs of each act of the main story.
Instead, the side stories focus on the history of the Literature Club’s formation and spend a lot of time fleshing out Doki’s four personalities in a way the main story just never had the chance to. time to do.
I didn’t clock how long it took me to complete them all, but the length was at least similar to the main story. Much of the reason it looked meaty to me could be because of the emotional burden it put on me.
For me, someone who is a huge fan of the original game, the side stories were everything I could have hoped for. They’re extremely well-written, extremely healthy and emotional, and give every character and pair of characters (like Yuri and Natsuki) equal time in the spotlight, and all come with new CGs featuring each paired character.
Most of them, especially the first side story Trust, with Monika and Sayori, are extremely emotionally heavy as the game delves into themes like depression, self-esteem, respect, etc. Dokis say aloud a lot of negative things that cross our minds and are there for each other as role models. Thirteen new added musical tracks that can be heard while playing through the side stories beautifully support the tone of each scene.
At the end of the side stories, the Dokis seem to have a bond that seems unbreakable. The main story is different now too now that you know how close they all were to each other at one point.
The side story content is the main draw here in Doki Doki Literature Club Plus whether you’re a casual or returning fan of the game. Hardcore fans, however, will likely appreciate the images that are in the game’s desktop – this which, yes, allows console gamers to play with the game files as needed.
All the poems, CGIs, and the in-game environment can be unlocked in the Pictures as a Collector’s Item section once you see them in-game. In addition, there are many other collectibles. that can be unlocked, such as concept art, social media art, and new content that can be unlocked by doing specific things, like writing a poem for a different character every day. , stuff like that. As a nice touch, you can also set any of the images as your wallpaper if you want.
There is also in-game music that will be added to an in-game player as you hear them in the game. You can listen to them at will on the desktop and also create playlists.
Finding out how to unlock all the collectible data in the game is a way for diehard fans and finalists to “100% the game if they want to.”
Finally, there is also a mysterious inbox that sits on your desktop where you will occasionally receive emails from a company known as Metaverse Enterprise Solutions. The desktop app and the mail seem to imply that you are an employee of the company. You can search the game files and you will come across other suspicious files. I haven’t figured out how to interact with them yet, but I bet someone smarter than me will start to understand what all of this means.
If I had to give it a go, it seems to tie into the long-held theory that Doki Doki Literature Club is some sort of experiment and may have even darker roots than what is seen in the main campaign, and may even have to be connected to any Salvato team is as follows.
Doki Doki Literature Club is one of the most memorable, creative, and iconic horror games of the past decade and should be experienced by anyone who can safely endure it. The Plus version of the game effectively adds even more valuable story content to the mix. The editorial staff were able to show off their talent in these side stories, and the result is a heartwarming experience that makes the Dokis even more adorable than they already were.
- Side stories combine to be an effective way to learn more about the Dokis.
- So many sincere and healthy moments, complemented by new CGs.
- Lots of collectibles for die-hard fans.
- The new music is fantastic and fits in perfectly with the original tracks.
- Not adding bonuses or cut content to the main story feels like a missed opportunity.