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How To Play Doki Doki Literature Club!

Will you write the way into her heart? If you’re interested in playing Doki Doki Literature Club!, be warned: You’re in for an emotional roller coaster.

In Doki Doki Literature Club!, players step into a dating sim world where all is not what it seems. Write poems, get closer with your literature club classmates, and learn more about their stories as you uncover this game’s mysterious, hidden side.

Since it was first released to overwhelming critical praise in 2017, Doki Doki Literature Club! has thrilled visual novel fans. With the game’s premium version now available, Doki Doki Literature Club Plus!, there are even many more ways to enjoy Monika, Sayori, Natsuki, and Yuri’s story. For newcomers to the fandom, there’s never been a better time.

Want to try the original or pick up DDLC Plus? Here’s everywhere you can get the acclaimed visual novel, and what you need to know to start playing.

How to play the original Doki Doki Literature Club!

Itch

Itch.io is a popular digital storefront for indie games. It’s a website, so you don’t need to download anything besides the game, but you can make an account to track purchases, leave reviews or questions, and maintain a library of your downloads. 

To get started, head to the Doki Doki Literature Club! itch page and click the “Download Now” box. Itch will give you the option to pay any amount for the game. If you are unable to tip the developers, click “No thanks, just take me to the downloads”

You’ll now have access to the Mac and Windows files. Here’s how to run the game depending on your operating system.

Windows

  • Download “DDLC (Windows).”
  • In Explorer, head to the file location and click on the .zip file. Then, click the “Extract” tab, and hit “Extract All.”
  • Open the extracted folder. It contains assets like art, save data, and an HTML file titled “README” that serves as the instruction manual.
  • Run the file titled “DDLC.exe.”

Linux

  • Download “DDLC (Windows).”
  • Extract ddlc-win.zip with your preferred .zip file extraction app.
  • Open the extracted folder in your Linux distro’s terminal. The directory contains assets like art, save data, and an HTML file titled “README” that serves as the instruction manual.
  • Run “DDLC.sh”

Mac

  • Download “DDLC (Mac).”
  • The folder created by opening the .zip file will contain assets like art, save data, and an HTML file titled “README” that serves as the instruction manual.
  • Run the file titled “DDLC”

Steam

If you’d prefer to keep Doki Doki Literature Club! with your other PC games, then don’t worry. Windows and Mac versions of DDLC are also available on Steam.

Steam is the biggest online storefront for video games, and the program makes running games much more straightforward than downloading and extracting titles off itch. First, you’ll need to download the application from Valve’s official Steam website and make an account. Sign in, navigate over to DDLC’s Steam page, then click “Play Game.”

DDLC is also free on Steam, and the store will automatically download the appropriate version of the game for your operating system. Once DDLC’s download is complete, just head to your Steam library and double click the game to start it.

DDLC Plus

In 2020, Serenity Forge published a premium edition of the game titled Doki Doki Literature Club Plus!, available digitally for PC, Xbox X/S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5. The game’s digital version costs $14.99. Each version can be purchased and downloaded from a digital storefront.

A special edition Doki Doki Literature Club Plus! physical release is also on the way, priced at $29.99 with an Aug. 31, 2021 release date. The physical edition includes bonus merchandise and is available for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Nintendo Switch.

For more information on where to pick up Doki Doki Literature Club Plus! physically, head to the official DDLC Plus! website.

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