Jeremy enjoys gaming when not helping manage the college he graduated from.
The visual novel Danganronpa games trap students in various locations, with escape only possible by murdering another student and getting away with it. In such a grim setting, you'd think the games would lean towards a darker atmosphere, and while they certainly have their tense moments, they also excel at creating light-hearted character building in-between murder mysteries.
With quirky "Ultimate" students specializing in various skills, we've seen dozens of memorable gals—which most captured our hearts? These are the ten most captivating Danganronpa girls! Some spoilers ahead.
10. Chisa Yukizome
Talent: Ultimate Housekeeper
Unlike today's other characters, you won't see Chisa in the video games, but in anime Danganronpa 3. Chisa is the homeroom teacher of D2's cast, caring for the group and helping align their often-conflicting personalities.
Bubbly, pretty, and dedicated, Chisa's an excellent role model, whose positive qualities make her final role in the "Tragedy" all the more heartbreaking.
9. Sayaka Maizono
Talent: Ultimate Pop Star
Sayaka quickly bonds with protagonist Makoto, helping him investigate and gather clues. She's far more intelligent than her pop star status may indicate, often joking she's psychic since she's so good at analyzing reactions.
Without giving too much away, Sayaka encounters an interesting dilemma that blurs her morality—were her actions justified, sympathetic, or downright wrong? No matter how you view her, there's no doubt she captured Makoto's heart (and by extension, ours as well).
8. Maki Harukawa
Talent: Ultimate Child Caregiver
Maki's claims of being the Ultimate nanny conflict with her brooding nature, and sure enough, there's more to this girl than meets the eye. But with an interesting back story and surprisingly genuine moments, she quickly becomes one of your most reliable, albeit dangerous, classmates.
She's also a rare gal whose romance arc falls not with the main character, but another fellow student, an interesting and appreciated plotline.
7. Chiaki Nanami
Talent: Ultimate Gamer
Chiaki's initially aloof personality makes her seem colder than she really is, and she slowly warms up to her peers. Being cute, quirky, and an amazing gamer may draw the eye, but her intelligence and kindness truly make her a fan favorite.
6. Ibuki Mioda
Talent: Ultimate Musician
Ibuki's punk style and crazy hair brings a Harley Quinn vibe, but despite her chaotic energy, she's simply a kind and fun-loving person. Her musical talents and looks deserve mention too, but Ibuki's probably one of the people from the series we'd most want to have as a real-life friend; she just steals the show in whatever scene she's in.
5. Komaru Naegi
Talent: Ultimate Little Sister of Hope (yes, really)
Makoto's younger sister is barely mentioned in the first game, but later stars in Ultra Despair Girls. Her game is unique in that it features much more action gameplay than the main entries, but either way, Komaru's allegedly plain looks and relative lack of talent bely her strong personality that can win over even tougher personalities, like Genocide Jack.
4. Kaede Akamatsu
Talent: Ultimate Pianist
V3's protagonist is a piano prodigy with a heart of gold. When the killing game is announced, Kaede is a leading force in pacifying her classmates. Her ideas to thwart the murders showcase a crafty side to her, and even though things don't all go as planned, Kaede undoubtedly brings some of the best twists in the entire series.
3. Sonia Nevermind
Talent: Ultimate Princess
Sonia's beauty and kindness attract men both real and fictional, earning the admiration of Kazuichi and Gundham. But she's more than just a pretty face, harboring the responsibilities of guiding her nation, often at personal sacrifice. Sonia showcases expansive military knowledge and even mentions being trained in combat. She's pretty useful in the group trials, having by far the most statements Hajime needs to agree with to advance the plot.
2. Aoi Asahina
Talent: Ultimate Swimmer
Aoi's athletic build quickly earns her male admiration, but she doesn't let her looks go to her head, remaining one of the kindest characters and quickly bonding with fellow student Sakura despite her intimidating appearance. Aoi's also got a love of donuts that's hard not to relate with, and her slim form belies her raw strength, frequently lifting and carrying heavy weights other characters struggle with.
1. Kyoko Kirigiri
Ultimate: ??? (she has amnesia at the game's start)
While Sayaka initially partners with Makoto, Kyoko gradually becomes his most ardent ally. Despite her cold mask and grim surroundings, Kyoko's surprisingly kind, at least deep down, and likely the smartest of all the trapped students, frequently saving the group from guessing the wrong culprit. Kyoko's mysterious backstory even got expanded in her own manga series: Danganronpa Kirigiri.
Getting to know your classmates is just as fun in Danganronpa as is solving murder mysteries, and for a more casual experience, several games include dating-sim like minigames such as School and Island Mode. Danganronpa S expands upon the concept with an entire game, and there's always the free-time social events in the main entries, but for now, vote for your Danganronpa girlfriend and I'll see you at our next gaming countdown!
© 2022 Jeremy Gill