The article below is based on non-localized content only available in Japanese.
As such, all information in this article is based on fan-contributed translations.
This article is about content that never made it out of development, and as such, is non-canonical.
Sayaka Maizono's Sister (舞園 さやかの妹 Maizono Sayaka no imōto) is a scrapped character who appeared in the artbook for Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls.
As her name suggests, she is supposed to be the little sister of Sayaka Maizono and was originally going to be used in the game as her target the Warriors of Hope are after before being replaced by Ayaka Haneyama.
She is mentioned to be a girl of good nature, originally meant to be 13 or 14 years old.
Maizono has short, shoulder-length hair which curls outwards, although some pieces show two streaks of hair sticking out. Her hair is stated to be naturally the same color as Sayaka's and was intended to 'hang down' much like hers. Her facial structure was also meant to be similar to Sayaka's, making their outwards appearances similar as pointed out by the designer. Her hair is adorned by a white hair pin, which fan artists have interpreted to be a flower or a star.
She wears a long sleeved shirt accompanied by a vest jacket, and baggy culottes tied with a bow over a pair of dark tights or leggings. Her shoe wear is unclear, though it's most likely supposed to be reminiscent of Japanese indoor shoes worn in Elementary schools. She carries a small handbag with a dark, rabbit shaped mascot key-chain attached to it.
There was a secondary design featured in her artbook profile, which shows Maizono in a western-style school uniform reminiscent of Hope's Peak female uniform. This was intended to be her middle school uniform in the case her age was changed to be older. It's unknown whether that would be her finalised appearance had she been added in the game as a middle school student.
In this design, Maizono is shown to be wearing a plain, pleaded skirt which reaches her mid thigh, with a white dress shirt neatly tucked into it. Over the shirt she is shown to be wearing a blazer, accompanied by an ample bow. She's also shown to be wearing a pair of school socks which end just under her knees. The colour of the uniform is unknown due to the roughness of the sketch, but could be presumed as lighter than Maizono's hair, which is roughly coloured in. It's worth mentioning in that design, Maizono's cheeks are highlighted in a fashion similar to Hiyoko Saionji's.
Creator comments on her early design briefly talk about what Maizono was supposed to be like.
She was intended to be very headstrong about being like her big sister, implying she would've bared a strong admiration for Sayaka, most likely due to her role as a role model for her younger sibling.
She's described as 'the type that takes one step forward but ends up going one step back instead', most likely meaning that because of her drive, she can end up losing herself and instead of moving forward would end up back where she had started.
It can also be understood as Maizono thinking too highly of her capabilities and trying to deal with everything on her own and consequentially being set back to the beginning. This can be considered reminiscent of the way Sayaka didn't discuss her feelings in Chapter 1 and decided to go through with her scheme to kill Leon Kuwata and frame Makoto Naegi, which in the end backfired at her.
Overall, she was intended to be a good kid with a kind personality who would be 'portrayed as a lovely character everyone would admire', once again reminiscent of Sayaka.
Reasons for scrapping
The reason for scrapping the character of Sayaka's sister has not been made explicitly clear, leaving the wording surrounding her ambiguous, but there are a few possible reasons.
- During a conversation with Makoto Naegi in Chapter 1 of Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc, Sayaka mentions having grown up with no mother and with a father who had to work until late each and every day, which is why she stayed home alone a lot. This means that according to the game's canon, Sayaka's sister either couldn't have been born or was never in contact with her, making it impossible for her to be part of the Hit List where everyone is someone very close to a character from the first game.
- Furthermore, it's because of the loneliness that she felt while waiting for her father to come home that made Sayaka turn to watching idols on television and start looking up to them, in turn inspiring her to become one. Adding a little sister would be inconsistent to the otherwise lonely backstory of Sayaka.
- Another reason for this can be Sayaka's motive in Chapter 1 of Danganronpa. She was pushed over the edge by a video showing her idol group lying on stage, either dead or unconscious. It's because of her deep care for the members that she was willing to conceive a plan to kill one of her classmates. Had there been a little sister character involved, Sayaka's character would be shown in a different light and seem uncaring which is very out of place for her character.
- Lastly, the theme of Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls is intended to be the conflict between adults and children. As she was designed, Sayaka's sister couldn't have a logical placement within the game's conflict, as she would've been too young to be considered a demon and featured as a target on the Hit List.
- Sayaka's sister appears to have been scrapped late in development, due to her being shown along with the other Hit List targets in their finalized appearances in the game's artbook.
- Her age had been undecided, thus giving her two alternative designs depending on which would be the age used in the game, late elementary or early middle school.