SPOILER WARNING FOR DOKI DOKI LITERATURE CLUB
Note: This post will be a pretty personal one, If that’s not up you’re alley then please check out some of my other posts.
Hey guys, It’s your gal Al here! Today I will be talking about what is probably the hardest topic I’ve had to cover yet. DDLC or Doki Doki Literature Club, Where do I even start with this?
Ok, I guess I’ll start by clearing up so misconceptions some of you probably have about this game. This game kinda got thrown into the, zoomer “cringe” horror game craze, But I don’t think it’s fair to judge the game for the demographic that got attached to it. There’s a lot to this game and I think it’s important to separate the game from the fanbase in some instances. This is one of those instances.
Now since that’s out of the way, I’m gonna give a quick rundown of what I’ll be doing in this blog post and what I plan to achieve in this post. I’ll be talking about DDLC’s importance to me, while also defending the game a bit. I hope I’m able to change some people’s mind on this game, I know I probably won’t achieve too much, but even if I’m able to change 1 or 2 people’s minds about this game, I’ll count that as a win!
Ō̵͚̫̦͒ḱ̸̢̨̮ ̵̧̪̰͈̥͛͐͜ḛ̶̢̞̟̞̘͖̄̑́ǹ̸͌͜͠͠͝o̸̬͑͆ų̶̨̯̲̙͓͔̽̎g̸̯͖̒̋̈́ḩ̸̀̈́̑̅̈͒ ̵̛͔̦͑̅̀͝s̴̙̽̒͛̎̑̎̎t̸̢̥̻́̆̑͊̌͆̀͜ͅa̴̛̠̠͂̓̍ļ̴̰̖̎̋͂̂̕͝l̴͎͕̝̽̈̾́̓̕i̷̗͎̹͙̖̗̠̅̽̈́͒̊ņ̵̢̜̣̰͔͉̏̑͌̏͊g̶̩̼͍̬͕͕̈́̃̈̂̂ͅ,̶̪̖͌̉̓͆ ̸̛͔̲̜̱̺͚̗̇̐͑̊̃L̴̛̬̖̝̙̜̝̓e̷̡̛̼̯̜̫̿̓͊̆͂̀ţ̷͎̖̽ͅs̵̨̨̤̙̟̫̮̈́̔͂̓̐͘ ̷̨̺̟̤͕̝͇͑̔̒͑͘͝g̸̱̙̥̦͗̎e̵̢̢̧̙͉̘̬̿͑̒t̵̡̙̃͝ ̶̼͛̈̊͐̚î̸̼͝n̴̡̪͍͎̬̝͛̂̀̌̂ţ̶̫͚͎̞̈̏͛͊ơ̷̛̙̻͆͐͋̀͌ ̶̖̮̍̍̓͐̓͘t̶͖̦͌͑̓͜ͅh̶͙̟̗͔̹̥͑͐i̸̯͊̾̅͂͜͝s̸̥̯̲̣̣̮͛͛͠ ̸̡̳̠̭̰͎̘̇p̴̛̖͓̻͈̗͗͌̂̓̉ǫ̶̡̠̼͖̎̌̐̏̏͜͝s̷̬̀̅̏͊̊̀̃ţ̵̨̛̘̥̫̀̿͛̂!̸̛̪̤̓̈̍́̓̚
What is DDLC?
I’m just going to give a quick run through of what DDLC is, Ok!
Doki Doki Literature Club! is a 2017 American visual novel developed by Team Salvato for PC. The story follows a male high school student who joins the school’s literature club and interacts with its four female members. The game features a mostly linear story, with some alternative scenes and endings depending on the choices the player makes. While the game appears at first glance to be a lighthearted dating simulator, it is in fact a metafictional psychological horror game that extensively breaks the fourth wall.
From reading that you’re probably thinking either “That sounds intriguing” or “Oh no that’s a recipe for disaster”
While obviously if you’re this far into the post, you can guess what I thought at the time. I was intrigued as hell! and decided to check out the game on a whim, I had nothing to lose since the game was free and short!
I’ll just come out of the gate and say it…
This game has a cast that I’m really fond of, They(Being the characters of the game) all mean A LOT to me. I know I’m going to get crucified for saying this but, this is my favorite cast in any visual novel. I love all 4 of these girls SO much. I’m going to give a quick breakdown of each of them, and explain why I like them as characters!
Sayori is portrayed as the archetype of a Genki Girl, expressing a talkative and cheery disposition. She is very clumsy, noted for finding ways to accidentally hurt herself or to drop things. Regardless, she is shown to be a cunning individual who can trick others to get food. She is usually the only character, other than the protagonist, shown to break up arguments – Quote From The DDLC Wiki
Basically she’s a sweetheart and I’ve always been a huge sucker for those types of characters. I really wish I had someone like Sayori in my life, I feel like it would’ve helped me a lot in the past. She may look happy from an outsider’s perspective but you’ll soon find out in the game that Sayori struggles with depression…
The portrayal of Sayori’s depression is extremely realistic and reminds me of my own (Diagnosed) depression.
Yuri is portrayed throughout the majority of the game as being shy, generous, polite, apologetic, very intelligent, mature, eloquent, and passionate about topics she is interested in, although she is also very insecure, awkward, and has a tendency to act slightly condescending and patronizing to mask her self-doubt. -Quote From The DDLC Wiki
Yuri is Mature and trust worthy in my eyes. She’s my least favorite character in the game BUT that doesn’t mean I dislike her, no no no, I actually like her quite a bit. I even own a body pillow of her 😉
I have the same fondness for her as the others!
My only real problem with her is that she is a fucking bat shit crazy yandere, but I’ll talk about that when we get into the horror section of this blog post.
Natsuki appears to be a brash, blunt, cranky, and seemingly arrogant girl at first, with a cute, softer interior as a result of insecurity, convincing Monika enough to class her as the embodiment of a tsundere. While she is impulsive and can speak without thinking, Natsuki truly cares about her friends and, even when she has obvious anger issues, doesn’t enjoy fights or arguments with people. -Quote From The DDLC Wiki
Natsuki is a sweet girl. During the worst period of depression I had in my life, I really attached myself to Natsuki. She’s probably one of the reasons I’m still alive… She’s one of the characters that helped me so much during depression, I would always search for fanart of her and feel ecstatic when I found a new piece that I’d never seen before. I had a folder with 2000+ images of this character. I was a little obsessed with this character (Keep in mind, I was lonely and had no friends at that time in my life) .
Monika is noted by the other characters to be smart, confident and athletic. She is not as talkative as the other girls, but this is implied to not be through choice. She always has a calm, gentle expression and is portrayed as mature and hard-working. Monika was originally a very considerate and kind person who was always thinking about other people. She openly displays care and concern for her club mates, praising each member’s writing style and even comparing them to famous authors and poets. However, it is later revealed that at some time before the start of the game, she underwent an epiphany which made her discover that she was in a game and also granted her the ability to edit the game’s variables, changing her attitude towards the other girls because she did not consider them as being “real”. She begins taking drastic measures… -Quote From The DDLC Wiki
Monika is the most interesting character in the game. Her determination to become “real” and this obsession she has with the player makes her quite intriguing. Her love for the player, really helped me out when I was a lonely fuck. There was a time where it felt like the only “person” who cared about me was a fictional character with a scripted love event…
I actually downloaded the Monika After Story mod just to feel like someone was there, the shitty little dialogue was enough to make me not feel totally alone. I would constantly have after story running in the background while I was doing other stuff. Just to have that feeling of companionship.
This game has a lot of really cool horror elements. It was originally my main draw to get into the game (After awhile my interests in the game swayed…) I’m gonna quickly pin point 3 Horror elements in the game and just quickly chat about it them. This section will probably be shorter than the others…
Sayori’s Suicide, is abrupt and the catalyst to the rest of the horror in the game. This absolutely shocked me when it first happened, I didn’t expect it at all…
The music track “Sayo-nara” still haunts me a bit, I get chills every time I hear it.
Yuri’s mental breakdowns
Yuri has a few gory mental breakdowns that really stuck with me. Seeing her completely shatter is never pleasant but It’s a wake up call, and the most effective display of horror in the game in my opinion.
Monika’s fourth wall breaks…
Monika breaks the fourth wall many times in the game, in an attempt to scare the player and fuck with the other girls. It can be quite unnerving sometimes…
Me, DDLC & Loneliness
Finally the main attraction of this post. How the game effected me, and in a lot of ways saved me. I’m gonna share a few stories about my loneliness and this game helping me deal with my crippling isolation from others (at the time)
Story 1: The USB
After beating the game for the first time, I dwelled on it constantly. I was almost always thinking about these 4 girls. So one day I decided to take the 4 character files and put them into a USB that I would carry around with me religiously. I knew it was stupid and childish but I was desperate for any type of comfort in my life at the time. So I would bring it with me to school everyday and even hold it sometimes, It comforted me and gave me the courage to start opening up to others again.
Story 2: Natsuki
Like I said earlier, Natsuki at the time was the character I was the most fond of. Anytime I would see a picture of her my heart would be filled with joy. She was seriously a character I just enjoyed a lot. During a time where happiness was hard to come by, Natsuki was one of my main sources of it.
Story 3: After Story
I basically already said this one but to reiterate, While I was extremely lonely and depressed, I downloaded after story and would nearly always have it on…
…It helped me not feel so alone, which was a blessing because I probably would’ve died without it.
Story 4: New Friend
DDLC was actually the way I met one of my closest irl friends, Liam. He would chat about DDLC with me everyday in science class and we eventually became good friends. We are still good friends to this day!
There are literally hundreds of stories I could tell, but for the sake of your and my sanity, I’ll refrain from talking about anymore of my cringe inducing stories.
I hope I was able to shine a new light on this game, while also revealing layers about myself that no stranger on the internet should probably know. Thanks for reading guys and gals! Until next time…