Chaos;Child’s Takuru Feels Like A Flawed, Realistic Teenager

By Jenni . October 20, 2017 . 12:00pm

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Games are filled with teenaged protagonists who don’t act like actual teenagers. We have games where they behave awkwardly, like Persona 3. History is filled with games where people act like 30-year-olds, but have profiles that list them as 16. Chaos;Child is one of those rare games where our hero, Takuru Miyashiro, acts his age. Even though these are extraordinary and mature circumstances, his portrayal of a young adult in such a situation rings true.

 

Our first impression of Takuru is an important one in Chaos;Child, and actually parallels the introduction of Takumi in the previous game, Chaos;Head. When we meet him, he is alone in a mobile home. He’s doing research on recent murders, while also occasionally flipping through the sort of dating help magazine any teenager might browse. While some of his activities, extensive internet research of serious activities in his community, seem beyond that of an ordinary young adult, the magazine balances out and shows his awkwardness. This is compounded when his childhood friend, Serika, comes in. He’s suddenly ashamed of his behavior, attempting to hide it. He isn’t sure how exactly to act around her, having a delusion that could either see them suddenly sharing a first kiss or have him get carried away, try to force her, and have her violently fight back and put him in his place.

 

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His behavior in the beginning of Chaos;Child helps keep him balanced. There are many cases where Takuru can seem like an abnormal teenager. His obsession with information is extraordinary. It may even come across as unlikely that a young man would come across and know that much at such a young age. Yet, this is balanced by his social interactions. He’s incredibly awkward. Whenever he is around people he doesn’t know well, he doesn’t know how to talk to them. He can fixate on the things he does know well and get carried away. These moments show he is clearly spending most, if not all, of his free time dedicated to research.

 

These events with other people too ring true. Anyone who was never exactly “cool” in high school will recognize the moments Takuru experiences. People don’t understand him; they talk about him behind his back to his face. This can lead to anxious, internal monologues on his part. He may insist that he doesn’t care what those “wrong-siders,” people who are misinformed and don’t have what he considers all the information, but he is also desperately seeking their approval, trying to be as “normal” as they are, and hope they don’t or stop talking about him.

 

Even his delusions can show his immaturity and youthfulness. There are plenty that seem like any teenager might have. (Or even adult.) In a delusion that involved a classmate picking on him and questioning his value, Takuru pantsed him. In one situation where Hinae, Serika, and Nono are talking to him, he can have a delusion where they mock his inexperience in love and point out his inadequacies. These delusions highlight dreams and fantasies and exacerbates concerns and worries. But, they do so in a way where the primary focus can be inconsequential or immature things.

 

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Perhaps one of Takuru’s most important characteristics is growth. As Chaos;Child proceeds, we see him develop as a character. He matures throughout the investigation. This teenager grows into a man, becoming a better person in the process. He realizes things about himself and the world. There are instances where he becomes less selfish. From the very start, we see inklings that he wants to become someone better. (This is in spite of occasions where he’ll claim he doesn’t care what others think.) He does research and attempts to gather information and become more well-rounded. That this development leads to something is a rather notable and enjoyable thing.

 

Takuru isn’t some unapproachable character. He doesn’t come across as unrealistic. He seems like a rather geeky and socially awkward young man who is going through some things. He isn’t the cool kid. He’s still trying to find his way. Something made more difficult considering all the murders and supernatural experiences going on. But because he comes across as so normal and even flawed, it helps make Chaos;Child a more interesting game.

 

Chaos;Child is available for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita.


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