It’s nothing new for digital games to vanish without a trace from their online storefronts, never to be purchasable again. Sometimes like in the case of Scott Pilgrim vs The World: The Game or that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time remaster from a few years back it simply has to do with licensing and copyright. Other times the fans simply don’t get an answer. The former appears to be the case this time around, as publisher NIS America announced yesterday that “select” titles from the beloved Danganronpa franchise are being delisted from PSN–primarily titles that were on the PlayStation Vita (which means Life).
The games removed from PSN are Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls (PS Vita), Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc (PS Vita), Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair (PS Vita), Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony (PS Vita), and Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony (PS4). The cause for removal? There’s no official word at this point, but it does appear that developer Spike Chunsoft is prepping a new entry in the series if a report by FanByte last December is to be believed.
It could also have something to do with Spike Chunsoft starting up a North American subsidiary out of Long Beach, California in 2017 for the purposes of handling its own localization and publishing, meaning that NIS America allegedly no longer has the publishing license for the series. Curiously, however, Danganronpa 1 2 Reload and Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls on PS4 are not listed among the games being removed, despite NIS America also being listed as the publisher on those titles.
What does this mean for you, the consumer? If you already own the digital Danganronpa games then you’re free to download them still, however new purchases of this version will cease to occur, at least for the time being. No word yet on if this means that Spike Chunsoft will take over publishing duties of these older titles and re-post the games at a later date. Chunsoft has a long-running history of games publishing going back to the ’80s, which includes the likes of Dragon Quest, Fire Pro Wrestling, the original Mystery Dungeon series, and its Pokemon-themed spinoffs, as well as the Zero Escape franchise.
Given the somewhat ceased to be nature of the Vita as a device, the removal of the Danganronpa portable titles isn’t too surprising, but the loss of Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony on PS4 is a big one, especially considering the other PS4 titles that seem to be sticking around. If something changes in the future, we’ll be sure to bring it to your attention.