Highschool romance with a twist of horror!
Doki Doki Literature Club! is a visual novel about friendship and romance with elements of horror. You play as a student that's been dragged to your friend's after school reading club to discover a handful of beautiful girls. Learning more about the club members in the days that follow, you consider the possibility of pursuing a deeper relationship while preparing for the club's debut festival.
As I've stated before, I'm not a huge fan of visual novels (so take that into consideration as I continue). The first and last one I've read up until now was Voices From the Sea nearly three years ago (not counting Sage Fusion, which has a heavy dose of RPG), and thankfully it had a unique premise. DDLC's setting is fairly standard, complete with a group of stereotypical characters that despite their unique personalities and individual tastes are all at least somewhat smitten with you.
|Oddly enough, this image is a fairly accurate representation of each girl's personality.|
That was pretty cool... five years ago when Space Blaster (Lines) did it. SBL even managed to close itself and install the new files right where you'd see them (your desktop) to continue the madness. While SBL was a shorter game, it didn't take hours to get to the point. Let me be clear - it's not wrong for DDLC to use a similar gimmick - but I'm not going to be impressed by it after having spent so long to get there. I guess I can sum up my main problem with the game using the old phrase "too little, too late".
I also feel DDLC could've easily gone a more somber and serious route, tackling issues like depression, mental illness and even suicide through your relationship with Sayori. Instead, that was squandered on shock value so the game could take a turn for the weird. Sadly, that's going to draw more attention than a slice-of-life story of highschool friendship and flirtation turned poignant tragedy.
If anything, Team Salvato has a decent enough grip on the pulse of today's popular culture that I have to give them credit for taking advantage of it. Doki Doki Literature Club! presents a textbook example of how to get popular YouTubers to make your game famous for you absolutely free.