Act 2 marks the game’s downward spiral into madness, where text and images are often corrupted and distorted and dialogue, poems, and plot events become increasingly unsettling, starting with Sayori's corrupted image on the main menu. During Act 2, a number of scripted visual and audio effects may randomly occur during gameplay:
There is a chance of the game displaying an alternate "ghost" menu on launch. The END title card appears instead of the usual Team Salvato logo and content warning, followed by a stark black and white version of the title screen. The menu options, game logo, and scrolling pink polka dots are replaced by a blank white background. The four girls have been altered to have a ghostly appearance: their eyes are now black circles, they lack noses, and Natsuki and Yuri are missing their mouths. Attempting to quit the application causes a zoomed in ghost Monika to appear in the center of the screen for 10 milliseconds before closing. This is a reference to Uboa in Yume Nikki, a starkly black-and-white creature which has a similar 1.56% (1/64) chance of appearing.
When the regular menu triggers, the usual disclaimer text reading "This game is not suitable for children / or those who are easily disturbed." on the splash screen has achance of being replaced by one of the following:
- "You are my sunshine, / My only sunshine"
- "I missed you."
- "Play with me"
- "It's just a game, mostly."
- "This game is not suitable for children / or those who are easily disturbed?"
- "I have granted kids to hell" – This is a reference to a controversy in WarioWare: Touched! in which the speedup of a track unintentionally sounded like the phrase "I have granted kids to hell."
- "PM died for this." – Dan Salvato previously worked on Project M (PM), an immensely popular modification of Super Smash Bros. Brawl made to closer match the gameplay style of Super Smash Bros. Melee. PM was shut down after several years of development due to legal concerns.
- "It was only partially your fault."
- "This game is not suitable for children / or those who are easily dismembered."
- "Don't forget to backup Monika's character file."
Opening the in-game menu has achance of showing a blurred and distorted image of Monika (menu_bg_m.png) for 0.3 seconds before continuing to the menu as normal. This will only happen once.
Additionally, any instance of the club room background during Act 2 has a Sayori’s death.chance of being replaced with a slightly modified version in which one of the posters at the back is replaced with the CG of
Act 2 begins with the same scene as Act 1, but the music (2g.ogg) is mildly distorted and Sayori’s name is replaced with randomly-generated glitch text. After a few lines of dialogue including some glitch text, the music stutters and what should be Sayori's sprite glitches between Monika's and Yuri's, mimicking a crash. All prior save data is deleted, and this scene cannot be accessed again.
The scene restarts, this time omitting Sayori entirely as the player characters notes that he has always walked to school alone. This is the last time she’s even indirectly mentioned until Act 3. The process of the game restarting is internally treated as the beginning of a new act, but this is colloquially ignored.
When Monika introduces the player to the club, there is a chance of Monika being mildly distorted (g1.png) for several lines. Provided the player isn't in skipping mode, the screen will also briefly invert.
At the end of the first day in Act 2, the player is - for the first time - given the opportunity to read a special poem.
Poem-writing is different than it was in Act 1. Sayori's sticker is now missing entirely. However, since each word is assigned a score for each girl, all of what would have been Sayori’s words are now preferred by Natsuki or Yuri.
When a word is chosen which Yuri likes, there is achance that an glitched version of her sticker will jump rather than her usual one. This can happen only once.
There is achance that, when the player finishes writing a poem, an image (eyes.png) similar to the first special poem will scroll downward on-screen for one second before the game continues. This can occur after any instance of the poem game during Act 2, but will only occur once.
Additionally, there is a chance that if the player chooses a word that appeals to Sayori, her sticker will jump from offscreen and become visible for a short amount of time.
After the first instance of the poem game in Act 2, a file is written to the game directory named CAN YOU HEAR ME.txt.
On the next day, the player will enter an exclusive scene with either Yuri or Natsuki, depending on who would like his poem more, similar to Act 1.
If the player holds Natsuki’s favor, then they will read manga together, much like in Act 1. The first abnormal event occurs while Natsuki tries to retrieve the manga from the closet. The “edited” style of text appears for the first time when Natsuki says “fucking monikammmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm”. The history is edited to say “Freaking Monika...”, the first time such a thing is done. Later, Natsuki again says in the edited style “don't judge a bookkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk kkkkk kk k k k k k”. This is removed from the history entirely. This is where the scene diverges from Act 1 when Natsuki faints. At this point, the music that’s playing (Play With Me) switches to a distorted version (6g.ogg) and Natsuki’s eyes and mouth are covered by swirling black squares. Natsuki says two lines of randomly-generated glitch text in the edited style and the music stops. Monika gives Natsuki a protein bar to eat, and the scene ends shortly after.
If the player holds Yuri’s favor, then they will read a book together. The first difference from Act 1 occurs when Yuri talks about the book which she’s reading. The description of the book, though called Portrait of Markov and described in both acts as having an “ominous-looking eye symbol on the front cover,” seems to be much more thematically dark in Act 2.
|Act 1||Act 2|
|"Basically, it's about this girl in high school who moves in with her long-lost younger sister..."
"But as soon as she does so, her life gets really strange."
"She gets targeted by these people who escaped from a human experiment prison..."
"And while her life is in danger, she needs to desperately choose who to trust."
"No matter what she does, she ends up destroying most of her relationships and her life starts to fall apart..."
|"Basically, it's about this religious camp that was turned into a human experiment prison..."
"And the people trapped there have this trait that turns them into killing machines that lust for blood."
"But the facility gets even worse, and they start selectively breeding people by cutting off their limbs and affixing them to--"
"O-Oh, that might be a little bit of a spoiler..."
"But anyway, I-I'm really into it!"
"...The book, I mean!"
"N-Not the thing about the limbs..."
Portrait of Markov does not appear to be a real book, but “Markov” is typically in reference to Andrey Markov, a Russian mathematician. Markov’s most well-known contribution to mathematics is the Markov chain, a process for selecting outcomes based on one or more previous events. Markov chains are typically used to rudimentarily model simple real-life processes. It is unknown what further relevance this has to the story.
Another difference from Act 1 occurs shortly after when Yuri is describing how the book influences her personal philosophy.
|Act 1||Act 2|
|"They challenge you to look at life from a strange new perspective."
"When horrible things happen not just because someone wants to be evil..."
"But because they have their own goals, or their own philosophy that they believe in."
"Then suddenly, when you thought you related to the protagonist..."
"They're made out to be the naive one for letting their one-sided morals interfere with the villain's plans."
|"It's the kind that challenges you to look at life from a strange new perspective."
"When horrible things happen not just because someone wants to be evil..."
"But because the world is full of horrible people, and we're all worthless anyway."
"Then, suddenlyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy"
The last two lines of her description in Act 2 are said in the edited style, and the last line is automatically skipped and removed from the history. A similar event occurs when Yuri describes a problem she has. In Act 1, she said "When I let things like books and writing fill my thoughts..." then "I kind of forget to pay attention to other people...". In Act 2, however, she says "my whole body gets incredibly [glitch text]" in between these two lines. The line is skipped automatically and removed from the history. This happens again when Yuri normally says “I was just--!” In Act 2, she also says “I was just bathing in the feeling of your body heat tttttttttttttheat eattttttt” in the edited style. This line is also skipped and removed from the history. Yuri runs away after this.
When the time comes to read the club members’ poems, Yuri is initially not available to interact with if she has run away, though she will return after you speak to Monika.
If Natsuki dislikes your poem, there’s achance the music will pause for two seconds and her eyes will pop out wordlessly. The scene continues as normal after 0.75 seconds.
After all the poems have been read, the argument between Natsuki and Yuri still ensues like in Act 1 but is much more intense. The music is 7g.ogg instead of Poem Panic!. Choosing between the two does not make a difference. When either button is clicked, a glitch sound effect will play, the screen will tear, and the screen will zoom in towards Natsuki’s button. After nine button clicks total, Monika will intervene. After the argument is concluded, Monika mentions that Natsuki will forget about it “completely.” At the end of the day, Yuri asks to talk to the player. However, after Monika leaves, Yuri says “but I really appreciate you understan[glitch text]” before the scene abruptly ends and the poem game starts, without the transition that usually precedes it.
During this poem game and the next, there is a 4g.ogg and the background to turn all white. A large, glitched Yuri sticker replaces the regular Yuri and Natsuki. This sticker moves a little, but will not jump up in response to any words. On this screen, clicking a word has a chance of triggering a subtle, distorted version of the usual select sound, or a chance of playing a sound of a girl saying "baa." No more than one glitched word can appear during each poem game, and the "baa" sound can only be heard once per glitch word. This soundbite is taken from the vocals of Ashley's Theme from WarioWare: Touched!—Dan Salvato's YouTube channel features a reconstructed version of the song's vocals.chance the player will encounter a word made of glitch text. Clicking the glitched word causes the music to switch to
After the poem game is complete, a file named iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii.txt is written to the game directory.
At the beginning of the next day, there is achance for Yuri to appear to be broken in half for one line of dialogue. Though Yuri is anxious to apologize, Natsuki appears to have forgotten about the previous day’s events. There is a chance of Natsuki's mouth being replaced with a realistic, animated version, while she says “mibulls sailcloth blindsight lifeline anan rectipetality faultlessly offered scleromalacia neighed catholicate” in the edited style. The significance of these words is unknown.
Regardless of whom the player’s poem would appeal to the most, the game forces the player into an exclusive cutscene with Yuri.
If Yuri was the poem winner for Chapter 1, she and the protagonist will continue reading together. Yuri goes to retrieve water to make tea, but doesn't return for ten minutes. The protagonist discovers her cutting herself in the hallway, but before he can intervene, the game rewinds itself to before he left the room, at which point Yuri returns with the water she had intended to get, with seemingly nothing amiss.
Yuri and the protagonist read together. After he feeds her a piece of chocolate, Yuri abruptly pulls him into the club room closet, overwhelmed with sudden emotion. She begins to stare at the player for a minimum of twelve seconds. While Yuri stares at the player, the room is dark, her pupils are missing, and her irises move erratically. Monika then interrupts the scene, announcing it's time to share poems.
If Natsuki was the poem winner for Chapter 1, the player views Yuri's Chapter 1 exclusive scene instead.
Yuri will show the player the same poem regardless of prior events, called Wheel.
Depending on whether the player has tailored their poems for Yuri, Monika will offer different feedback. If Yuri was the Chapter 1 poem winner, she will warn the protagonist about Yuri’s habit of cutting herself when she gets too excited, speculating his presence might be a stimulus for her. Otherwise, Monika will say that the poem favors Yuri regardless of how it was written. Afterwards, Monika shows the player her poem Save Me, a corrupted version of the poem of the same name from Act 1. Monika will proceed to give the same "writing" tip regarding saving your game as in Act 1, but this time interrupts herself, asking if anyone can hear her. A dialogue box will pop up with the message “Please help me.” with “OK” as the only option.
Natsuki will only share her poem if she was the poem winner for this chapter or the previous. If only one of the two previous poems appealed to Natsuki, then she will show the player the same poem from Act 1, Chapter 2, Amy Likes Spiders. If both of the previous poems appealed to Natsuki. She will show the player a new poem, T3BlbiBZb3VyIFRoaXJkIEV5ZQ==, and ask the player why he didn’t read with her that day. The music (Okay, Everyone (Natsuki)) shifts to a more unsettling version (5_ghost.ogg), wherein the main xylophone plays notes seemingly at random while clock noises and frantic violin sounds fade in and out. Natsuki’s eyes and mouth are replaced with swirling black squares and her eyes start bleeding. After several lines of dialogue, her mouth is replaced with an unusually large smile, and then her neck appears to break sideways. Natsuki appears to scuttle towards the player before an END title card appears and the scene resumes as though nothing had happened.
After all poems are shared, the player is given the option to see a second special poem. After this, there is achance that the cursor will be turned into a broken version of Sayori’s head, which lasts for two lines of dialogue before reverting to normal. There is a that a “faint” effect will be activated, which entails the screen becoming red and overlaid with veins, the music becoming muffled (3g2.ogg) for several lines, then the screen fades to black and returns to normal after player decides to continue. It's possible for both the faint effect and the cursor to trigger simultaneously.
The girls argue about the direction of the Literature Club, and whether or not they should actively recruit new members. After Natsuki leaves the room, Yuri expresses her ambivalence about participating in the festival given her duties as vice president, then abruptly suggests no one would care if Natsuki killed herself. This interjection is set to a 2.07x sped up version of My Feelings (9g.ogg) and a glitched, zoomed in version of Yuri's face.
Blood will burst from her right eye before the scene cuts back to normal music and visuals. After a few moments her eye will start dripping blood again, more subtly.
The day ends with Monika asking to talk to the player, but being cut off by the end of the scene fading to black and the start of the poem game.
MONIKA: "So that's why--" "Wait, not yet!" "No!" "Stop it!"
During this iteration of the poem game, Yuri's sticker now has one sleeve of her blouse rolled up to reveal cuts on her wrist and forearm. There's also achance that Monika’s sticker will jump up from below the bottom of the window when a word is picked. However, affection points are still only attributed to Yuri or Natsuki. The usual page number out of 20 in the top-right corner is now displayed in unary, simply adding a 1 every time a word is chosen.
At the beginning of the next day, there is achance of seeing a heavily distorted version of Sayori’s face, but only if the player did not trigger the random eyes event after the most recent poem game. This is likely to prevent the two jump scare events from occurring consecutively.
Either Natsuki or Yuri will apologize for arguing yesterday depending on whom the player chose more words for. The game repeats the scene where Yuri cuts herself in the hallway.
However, if the player has already seen this event, after the dialogue rewinds, Yuri will remark on the feeling of déjà vu. She expresses worry over her inability to process her intense emotions lately, as well as over Monika's recent behavior. Yuri begins talking about how nice it would be to spend time with the protagonist alone, throughout which Monika’s character sprite slowly fades onscreen, in front of the dialogue box. When Monika is fully opaque, the screen cuts to the club room, and the protagonist is abruptly faced with a choice of whom to show his poem to.
Natsuki will show various levels of disdain depending on how much she has liked the player's poems, who was the chapter poem winner, and whether the protagonist has already shared with, and given his poem to, Yuri. Regardless of her reaction, Natsuki show you a “poem" she claims is very important to her, which is actually a secret message about Yuri’s abnormal behavior and a plea for the protagonist to help.
Afterwards, her face will disappear, the music will stop, and she will say in the edited style to ignore everything that the player just read. Claiming she and Yuri are "too messed up" for the player, she says to “Just think of Monika from now on. / Just Monika.” The "Just Monika" mantra is repeated a number of ways, including a fake game restart with “Just Monika.” in lieu of the warning text.
Monika does not share a poem with the player. If the player wrote poems for Yuri all three days, the music will cut out and she will say, "Don't say I didn't warn you" and nothing else. Otherwise, she will try to share a poem, but it will glitch. if the player is running Windows and is playing in fullscreen, a fake blue screen of death error will appear for three seconds. If not, the screen will turn black for two seconds.
When Yuri is shown the player’s poem, she will react well to it regardless of how it was written. She will make several uncomfortably obsessive comments in the edited style, which are removed from the history. She will give the player a poem called mdpnfbo,jrfp that appears to be meaningless scribbles, resembling the writing of someone with hypergraphia. However, it is actually text, rendered in a font called Damagrafik Script. The background of the poem is different from the rest, having yellow and red stains on it.
After the player has shared poems with all of the members, they are given the choice of viewing the third special poem, though this time no actual message appears in the yes/no prompt.
Next the club discusses preparations for the festival. The player is offered the choice to help either Natsuki, Yuri, or Monika with festival preparations, but the mouse is automatically directed to the choice button for Monika. If the player still picks Yuri or Natsuki (trivial if using the keyboard instead of the mouse), then the music will cut out as the backgrund is replaced with white static with Yuri’s moving eyes over it. The player is given a new menu with ten buttons reading "Monika."
However, both Yuri and Natsuki object to the player's "decision." Yuri has an outburst, prompting Natsuki and Monika to leave the room. At this point, as of version 1.1.0, the files hxppy thxughts.png, CAN YOU HEAR ME.txt, and iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii.txt are all removed if present. Added in their stead is a file named simply have a nice weekend!.
Yuri uses this chance to confesses her mad love for the protagonist, and waits for his response. Regardless of the player's choice, she begins laughing maniacally, then stabs herself in the chest and stomach, collapsing onto the floor.
Dan Salvato has provided multiple interpretations to the nature of this scene. Should the player reject Yuri's confession, it's simple to assume that her suicide is a emotional response to rejection. Salvato noted that—if the player accepts the confession—it's possible that her reaction is a result of her habit of self-harm to cope with emotional overload taken to its logical extreme, or—alternatively—a final effort to stop the obsessive tendencies which had been growing harder for her to control.
Immediately after this scene, the dialogue history is wiped entirely, and replaced with one single line of text:
Welcome to the Literature Club! It's always been a dream of mine to make something special out of the things I love. Now that you're a club member, you can help me make that dream come true in this cute game!Every day is full of chit-chat and fun activities with all of my adorable and unique club members:Sayori, the youthful bundle of sunshine who values happiness the most;Natsuki, the deceivingly cute girl who packs an assertive punch;Yuri, the timid and mysterious one who finds comfort in the world of books;...And, of course, Monika, the leader of the club! That's me!I'm super excited for you to make friends with everyone and help the Literature Club become a more intimate place for all my members. But I can tell already that you're a sweetheart—will you promise to spend the most time with me?Welcome to the Literature Club! It's always been a dream of mine to make something special out of the things I love. Now that you're a club member, you can help me make that dream come true in this cute game!Every day is full of chit-chat and fun activities with all of my adorable and unique club members:Sayori, the youthful bundle of sunshine who values happiness the most;Natsuki, the deceivingly cute girl who packs an assertive punch;Yuri, the timid and mysterious one who finds comfort in the world of books;...And, of course, Monika, the leader of the club! That's me!I'm super excited for you to make friends with everyone and help the Literature Club become a more intimate place for all my members. But I can tell already that you're a sweetheart—will you promise to spend the most time with me?Welcome to the Literature Club! It's always been a dream of mine to make something special out of the things I love. Now that you're a club member, you can help me make that dream come true in this cute game!Every day is full of chit-chat and fun activities with all of my adorable and unique club members:Sayori, the youthful bundle of sunshine who values happiness the most;Natsuki, the deceivingly cute girl who packs an assertive punch;Yuri, the timid and mysterious one who finds comfort in the world of books;...And, of course, Monika, the leader of the club! That's me!I'm super excited for you to make friends with everyone and help the Literature Club become a more intimate place for all my members. But I can tell already that you're a sweetheart—will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with me?will you promise to spend the most time with
Due to the "broken" script, the player is forced to sit with Yuri's corpse the entire weekend, over the course of which she will produce 1440 lines of randomly-generated glitch text in the edited style. The CG changes to reflect the passage of time, as the light changes (from day, to sunset, to night), Yuri's blood dries, her eyes and skin lose color, and her small smile disappears as her skin's moisture evaporates and her skin tightens. There are 9 different CGs in all.
To ensure that a player will be able to continue past all 1440 lines of text, there are a multitude of ways for text to be skipped. The skip button, though usually disabled when the player is reading text they haven't seen, is enabled and allows for quick progression through all the text. Additionally, quitting and restarting the game, going to the main menu, or loading a save will all advance the time cycle by one CG, meant to indicate that the player's actions are still affecting the game.
After all 9 CGs have been seen, the game goes back to the classroom background. Natsuki enters, excited for the festival, but stops when she notices Yuri’s corpse, vomits, and leaves. Monika enters, considers the situation, deletes Yuri and Natsuki, and the game triggers a fake game restart and begins Act 3.
- dansalvato, Twitch livestream, 23 September 2018.
- dansalvato, Twitch livestream, 14 October 2018.