Single Status Update
I know I'm late, but I played Doki Doki Literature Club recently.
It's very, very good.
It's a game I was always curious about but I couldn't really go anywhere without hearing about the twists. I ended up watching Etika's playthrough the other day to get a feeling for the experience. Overall I think it's a really interesting game with fun characters, but probably not one I would play since I'm not sure I'd get anything out of it knowing what I do now. The first third of the game did take me by surprise though when I watched it since I kept thinking "when is the weird stuff going to pop off?"
To be honest, I think most people online like it for the most superficial reasons. It's really fun on the first playthrough when you don't know what to expect and get surprised by the twists, but I actually think some of the best content is in the first act. The way it subverts and (sometimes heavily criticises) anime culture and foreshadows its characters' troubles and plot points is what I think is the best part of the game. I actually think it's substantially better on a second playthrough.
Yeah the first act/third was genuinely interesting to me and I was surprised by how convincing and well-handledSpoiler
was. It's probably the only thing I didn't know about since it's usually the meta-horror and shocking stuff from act 2 that gets the most attention. For what it's worth I kind of like how that stuff is handled too but when the game relies so heavily on it and knowing about it ahead of time it doesn't really leave much else for the player to really dig into.
I agree that Yuri's behaviour in Act 2 is probably one of the weaker elements of the game. And it's what I mean for the superficial elements of the game being popular: "oh it's great because isn't Yuri creepy!" etc etc. It is executed well, but isn't as good as Sayori's arc.
One thing I do really like about Act 2 is Monika's involvement and how many questions that raises about how much of Act 2 (such as Yuri's problems and Natsuki's dad) are even real. Clearly some of it is, but it's hard to know where that line is drawn.
I also really like Monika's monologue when you are in the room alone with her, because she turns out to be far more sensible and down to earth when you finally get to talk to her, gives her whole tragic story more pathos, because she's really just an ordinary high school student.