The Danganronpa franchise has some of the best characters imaginable. From heroes to villains and even cute and cuddly psycho-killer bears. But, you might be wondering who is the best of the best? For those of you who aren't familiar with it, Danganronpa is a video game series with a handful of anime adaptations. It's a type of game that makes you grateful for the type of high school that you had to suffer through. Once you see what these high school students from Hope's Peak Academy had to endure, you'd agree with us. The school chooses students who show promise and are accepted via lottery. Once they're in, they find themselves in a sadistic game where the only way to get out of is to commit the perfect murder, that's Danganronpa! If you already like the idea of the series, then you're gonna love these unique characters even more.
You might think he's just a harmless little stuffed animal but he has got a whole different side to him. Monokuma is both the most fascinating and most frightening character of the Danganronpa series. He's actually a remote-controlled teddy bear. His left side is a cute and cuddly white bear while the other half is a sinister-looking black bear with red eyes. When Junko's not around, he acts as the proxy and self-proclaimed headmaster of the school. He punishes any student who breaks the rules of the school and that goes for the game too. Even though Junko died in the events of the first game, he still made appearances in the rest of the series. Although this time, he was under the control of different masters up until he was crushed by a boulder.
Makoto Naegi is one of the main protagonists who fought alongside Kyoko during the first game. He comes into the scene as a kind of oddball character. Having won the lottery, his entry into the Mutual Killing Game was completely out of sheer luck. That's when we found out that he's an incredibly lucky person. When we say he's lucky, we mean that he can solve problems and survive events solely because of his luck. But to his credit, he's pretty intelligent and clever. He was even able to solve all the murder mysteries in the game. Plus, he even stopped Junko's plans from ever happening. Down the road, he plays an important part in stopping future games and taking down evil forces. For someone who's been dealt with a bad hand, he sure knows how to turn it around.
Cool, calm, and collected is probably the best way to describe Kyoko. She's the heroine of the first game in the series and she approached every problem that she encountered with a calm demeanor. That's most likely how she can come out on top of any situation. The Mastermind was so worried about her cleverness that she had her memories completely wiped. Just like Makoto, she plays an important part in the other games to help out other heroes in whatever way she can. Another interesting thing about her is that she's always wearing gloves. It's to hide the burn scars that she got when she was younger. How she got them is still unknown but I guess that's part of the mystery of her dynamic character.
You can pretty much call her the video-game queen. Chiaki Nanami was one of the main protagonists alongside Hajime during the second game. To put it simply, she's a student who lacks any real-world knowledge but she's highly skilled at playing video games. Later on, it was revealed that she's actually an artificial intelligence program. Her design was based on a girl who attended Hope's Peak. As per protocol, her job is to protect others during the experiment and serve the needs of the Future Foundation. But she chose to disobey the rules of her programming to help Hajime and free the other students from the simulation. Even for a computer program, she's the ultimate selfless hero and that's what makes her one of the best.
The one who started it all, Junko Enoshima is the first villain of the series. She was the mastermind behind the Mutual Killing Game and on top of that, she's too crazy for comfort. Her idea of pleasure is causing other people intense emotional and mental pain. Anything else is a bore for her. Between her insane obsession and running the game, she slowly started to lose her mind. Even so, she was such a powerful and dynamic figure that her legacy lived on in the games that followed. Every other villain in those games tried to emulate her. She even had this virus alter-ego who infected the second game's virtual world. Seeing as how she was such an influential force even after death, that's more than enough to tell you how valuable she is.
Hajime is the main hero of Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair. What's interesting about him is that he has a fascinating backstory of how he came to be before the game. He was originally part of an experiment called the Hope Cultivation Project. He was a talentless individual who had his memory erased for a fresh start. He was eventually implanted with multiple talents but then he started to lose touch with other members of mankind. As a result, he was framed for killing the Student Council at Hope's Peak Academy. Despite discovering his past life, he chose not to let it define him and worked hard to help anyone that he could. Still, the darkness of his past tends to haunt him from time to time which makes him a pretty complicated hero.
He may not strike you as a capable champion, but he was still good nonetheless. Shuichi Saihara is the hero of Danganronpa V3. He's a quiet and soft-spoken young man who's pretty smart but not entirely confident in his own abilities when it comes to solving murder cases. Luckily for him, he meets Kaede who gives him the confidence boost that he so desperately needs. Afterward, he realized his full potential and stepped up to the plate. Just like Kaede, his memories were also wiped clean. Before, he was a rather sadistic individual who wanted to be part of the game because he wanted to commit the perfect murder. It's a good thing that he turned over a new leaf or we would've seen him in a pretty different light.
You might not think much of her the first time you see her but she's bad news. While Masaru was the face of the Warriors of Hope, Monaca was the brains of the entire operation. Thanks to her appearance of being confined to a wheelchair and having a cute and rosy demeanor, it greatly helped in hiding her true identity. She was able to avoid suspicion while she secretly pulled the strings behind the scenes. She was the brainchild behind the Monokuma robots and she did it to become the next Mastermind of the Game. She even came close to achieving her goals but she gave up after learning her idol Junko's secrets. She eventually left the planet and cleansed her hands of everything and everyone. It's a shame though 'cause she was a character that showed a lot of promise.
There have been two anime series based on the Danganronpa franchise. The first one is Danganronpa: The Animation which was based on Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc. The video-game based anime series premiered in 2013. The other one was based on a much later title. Although it may sound confusing, the second series is actually called Danganronpa 3: The End of Hope's Peak High School. It's not an anime adaptation of any of the games and is a completely original new story. It's intended to be the conclusion of the Hope's Peak Academy arc.
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