This article is about the player character in the games. For the main chracter in the anime, see Ritsu Shikishima.
|Height||• 172cm (M)|
• 159cm (F)
|Affiliation||• Go-Home Club|
• Ostinato Musicians
|Appears in||• The Caligula Effect|
•Caligula EPISODE: Marie Mizuguchi ~The World She Saw~
• Caligula Overdose
|Produced by||• Utsu-P|
• Yoshida Takumi
|Theme||• Suicide Prototype|
|Voice||• Chiharu Sawashiro (M)|
• Miyuki Sawashiro (F)
The protagonist of The Caligula Effect is a second year student at Kishimai High School and, like many others in Mobius, entered it to escape the harshness of reality.
- The Caligula Effect: Protagonist
- Caligula Overdose: Protagonist
- Caligula: Main Character (as Ritsu Shikishima)
The male protagonist is a young man with neat black hair, bangs mostly curved off to the left. He has gray eyes, and like most of the people in Mobius, wears the school academy uniform, though slightly altered in that he wears it open with a red rose pendant or tie around the collar of his shirt.
The female protagonist, much like her male counterpart, wears a modified version of the school uniform and wears it open with the same ribbon/tie/pendant around her neck. However, her shirt is colored white and wears suspenders over her shoulders. She has short brown hair and gray eyes.
As the Ostinato Musician Lucid, their appearance changes drastically. Their face is masked by a black skull, similar to a Digihead, and is dressed in a black coat with a scarf and pants, along with a black fedora hat. The scarf has several "x's" printed on it, with only a single "x" on the right side. Strangely, their torso is completely invisible and shows the red interior of their coat. The interior of the coat has a design of a rose. Connected to their pants are white suspenders that cris-cross over each other but don't reach up to their shoulders. Two white straps also hang down from their waistline. The coat also has a gold cross pinned to the left side, where the emblem of Kishimai Academy would be. Curiously, in Lucid's portrait and artwork, the skull is incomplete with several holes, but in-game cutscenes and model show the head is complete and lacks any holes.
In the anime, Ritsu is first introduced with and sometimes seen wearing a brown coat. In real life, his appearnce is radically different, bearing neat brown hair with a constant troubled expression.
The protagonist is usually silent, thereby allowing the player to depict how they can be portrayed in the game. Like most denizens of Mobius, they entered because they felt as if they no longer had a place in the real world or simply didn't belong there. When first introduced, they are naturally stunned upon seeing a classmate who should have graduated already being introduced as a first-year student and realize that there is something wrong with Mobius.
A defining trait of the protagonist is that, like the other members of the Go-Home Club, they are willing to return to the real world, despite having suffered from circumstances that led them there, showcasing a resolve to face this trauma head-on.
However, in Caligula Overdose, it is possible for this resolve to falter when questioned on it by Thorn, thus leading to their eventual betrayal.
The protagonist's life before entering Mobius is relatively unknown, though during the process in which they awaken to their Catharsis Effect, there are various choices for the player to decide. Among those is a dark secret that caused them to be judged harshly and wanted to escape from the criticism, an event to where they wanted to forget what happened but were unable to, or a combination of the two.
"Also... the Hidden? Couldn't that be something even you don't want to know?"
The following content contains spoilers. Please proceed at your own risk.
The Caligula Effect
|“||Now, discard all that hate, and get ready to enjoy your time with everyone! Welcome... to Mobius!||”|
|— μ to the Protagonist|
As the protagonist enters Mobius for the first time, μ speaks to them and asks them for their name before telling them about Mobius and how no one can be hurt there. Following this, they live a life of ignorance, living out a daily school life.
During the Freshman Entrance Ceremony, after they give their speech, the teachers call Kensuke Hibiki up as the Freshman Class Representative. This shocks the protagonist, as during last year's Graduation Ceremony, Kensuke Hibiki was the Senior Class Representative and should have graduated last year. Following this, the protagonist realizes that something is amiss and escapes the auditorium, heading to the station in order to get out of the city. However, they are unable to escape.
μ, who was holding a concert nearby, arrives and informs the protagonist that she hasn't finished creating the city yet. Confused about what their decision to try and leave, μ asks if they are dissatisfied with Mobius and promises to make it better before asking if they have a wish. Afterwards, Aria arrives in an attempt to convince μ to return with her. μ refuses, attempting instead to bring everyone's wish to fruition before leaving. A few in the crowd suddenly attack the protagonist out of anger for making μ leave. Shogo Satake then arrives and helps the protagonist, taking them away and escaping.
After escaping the mob, Shogo explains Mobius' nature as a world created for people who don't belong in the real world before stating that he and a few others wish to return to the real world. He is initially shocked by Aria's existence, who then explains that she and μ were originally simple song synthesizer programs who developed a consciousness. When they saw the suffering of humans expressed in the songs they made, they wished to make a safe haven for them in the form of Mobius. However, at some point, μ usurped control from Aria and lost most of her power in the process and is now trying to get μ to return with her back to where they belong.
The mob that attacked the protagonist then arrives before transforming into bizarre creatures, who Aria identifies as "Digi-Heads." She then states that the protagonist has the ability to fight back: by asking him about their trauma and what he wants to do to fight against it, she helps them unlock their Catharsis Effect. With this power, the protagonist successfully defeats the Digi-Heads. Afterwards, Shogo introduces them to the others in Mobius who wish to return home: the Go-Home Club.
In the remake, the player has the option of choosing a female protagonist, which substantially effects interactions with them as well as certain scenes. Additionally, players will also have the option of choosing to join the Ostinato Musicians under the name of "Lucid," in order to discover both sides of the story.
After dealing with Sweet-P and learning about some sort of event that requires a ticket, the Go-Home Club splits up to investigate further. The protagonist returns to the stage where they first met μ and encounter Thorn, who offers them a chance to meet with her. She then shows them a door and states why they came to Mobius, mentioning one of the choices you chose as part of the protagonist's reason for entering Mobius (example being if players chose to have the protagonist possess an inferiority complex, thus having them want unwavering confidence). Thorn says μ can grant that wish and says that they are being used by Shogo Satake. She also states that their actions are causing a rift that threatens Mobius' stability, and wants to make sure they understand what it is they are getting themselves into.
Thorn mentions again she knows why the protagonist entered Mobius, and also why Shogo entered it, and also why many people came to Mobius and want to stay in it. She tells them to enter the door if they want to learn the truth. Should the protagonist refuse, the game will follow the standard route of the Go-Home Club. If they accept, however, then they will follow the Forbidden Musician Route.
Upon entering the waiting room that μ created for the Musicians to bond, she mentions the protagonist's face looks pale, possibly referencing the trauma the protagonist suffered in the real world. She then grants them the form of their Ostinato Musician persona, dubbing them "Lucid." This is done so that the protagonist, as Lucid, can interact with people who can only thrive in Mobius and with the Musicians without them knowing they are the President of the Go-Home Club.
During the final act of the game as the party prepares to face off against Thorn, the protagonist has the option of returning to reality or staying in Mobius. Choosing the latter option will result in the protagonist revealing themselves as Lucid to the Go-Home Club. Outraged by this betrayal and unwilling to fall back now, Aria administrates the Catharsis Effect Overdose to its full potential, though Thorn muses if they will be able to recover from the massive strain. If you completed their Character Episodes, the Go-Home Club will react to this betrayal very harshly, either demanding answers from them or wanting to kill them for betraying their trust.
After defeating the Go-Home Club, Lucid and Thorn enter the Metaverse-Es and subdue Aria, thus allowing μ to fulfill Thorn's wish of destroying reality. The Go-Home Club, sometime afterwards, are all returned to their former states as denizens of Mobius. In the background, reports of the Astral Syndrome rapidly growing can be heard while the protagonist is giving a speech at an assembly, referencing the beginning events of the game. The reports are cut short and everyone in the assembly hall are gone. When μ notices that everyone is gone, she asks where everyone went and demands answers from the protagonist, who is fading away.
- In the game, the protagonist was the first character to develop the Catharsis Effect, and afterwards Shogo developed one. However, in the anime, Shogo has already developed a Catharsis Effect. According to Aria during Episode 3, Ritsu wasn't capable of developing one until Episode 6.
- Regardless of the protagonist's gender, their identity as the Ostinato Musician, Lucid, will look the same. Each time Lucid is introduced to members of the Ostinato Musicians, they will express confusion over the gender of Lucid.
- Both genders of the protagonist wield the same Catharsis Effect.