Doki Doki Literature Club creator Dan Salvato has revealed that one of the indie visual novel’s most iconic scenes was censored in the recent PlayStation 4 release of the title’s expanded edition in order to comply with Sony’s content regulations.
Salvato revealed the censorship on June 30th, the same day that Doki Doki Literature Club Plus released digitally for PC and consoles in a post shared to the official Team Salvato blog aptly titled “About Censorship.”
In the post Salvato addressed fan concerns “that based on the game content, DDLC might have certain parts of the game censored, or otherwise altered, in order to comply with the [respective] regulations” of each platform.
“We feel confident in the nuance of DDLC’s content,” wrote Salvato, “but we also know that certain platforms might have regulations that we wouldn’t be an exception to.”
The indie creator then assured fans that he “had already decided long ago that if I was required to remove specific scenes from DDLC in order to publish it to a platform, then I would not publish it to that platform,” and stated that as such, fans could rest easy knowing “that no scenes have been removed” from the title’s console release.
However, this assurance that no scenes had been removed was not to say they had not been altered in some instances, as Salvato proceeded to reveal that “the PlayStation version of the game has some visual changes to one of the scenes.”
[Warning: Spoilers And Graphic Imagery Related To Doki Doki Literature Club Follow Below]
According to Salvato, the censored scene in question is the one which occurs “towards the end of Act 2 in the classroom, just before the weekend starts,” when Yuri confesses her love to the protagonist.
In this scene, regardless of whether or not the player chooses to reciprocate or reject Yuri’s feelings, the purple-haired member of the eponymous Literature Club will proceed to violently stab herself to death, eventually allowing herself to bleed out on the floor of the club’s meeting room.
While this change was made in order to comply with Sony policy, Salvato asserted that he had at least “designed the changes myself,” and thus felt “confident in them because I don’t consider the psychological effect of the scene to have been diminished in any way; I wouldn’t have accepted that kind of compromise.”
“Basically, the change is not a big deal–I just wanted to make everyone aware of it in advance, because I know that DDLC fans will notice it as a difference from the original game,” he continued. “I wanted to avoid a scenario where people would spot the difference and think that the game was unfairly tampered with by some other company.”
Noting how “aside from the visual changes described above for the PlayStation version, some fans are worried that part of the essence of DDLC will be lost with it being ported to consoles,” Salvato concluded his post by declaring that “It comes down to this: If I couldn’t make DDLC Plus without it being a ‘worse’ experience, I wouldn’t have made it at all.”
“DDLC Plus exists in the first place because we had some really cool ideas that we wanted to make!,” he ultimately exclaimed. “That’s the Team Salvato way.”
Doki Doki Literature Club Plus is currently available digitally for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and PC consoles.
A limited edition physical release produced by Serenity Forge, which includes the game and a number of physical extras, is currently set to release for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5 consoles on August 31st.
What do you make of Doki Doki Literature Club’s censorship on the PS4? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!