In February 2008, MediaWorks released an adventure visual novel called Baccano! for the Nintendo DS. The game revolves around the events aboard the transcontinental express Flying Pussyfoot as it travels from Chicago to New York City in December 1931. Throughout the story, the player has the power to select characters' next course of action from multiple options. Choosing incorrectly will inevitably lead the player to a 'false' ending.
- Shintarou Oohata as Elmer C. Albatross
- Ken Narita as Lebreau Fermet Viralesque
- Yasuhiko Kawazu as Turner
- Masakazu Morita as the "Young Conductor"
- Hiroki Shimowada as Upham
- Daisuke Sakaguchi as Jacuzzi Splot and Bress Splot
- Yu Kobayashi as Nice Holystone
- Kenji Nomura as Gregoire
- Tetsuharu Ōta as Jon Panel
- Tsutomu Densaka as Fang Lin-Shan
- Kunihiro Kawamoto as Nick
- Masafumi Kimura as Joe
- Atsushi Ono as Togo
- Hōchū Ōtsuka as Gary
- Rie Kugimiya as Nancy Lute
- Hiroyuki Yoshino as Firo Prochainezo
Art and Music
The majority of the background art in the game are stills from the 2007 anime adaptation, and character art derives from the anime's character designs. The music uses tracks from the anime's official soundtrack, as well as a few original pieces.
The main text of the game is the unabridged text of the second and third light novels. However, at various points, the player is offered the chance to make choices about the characters' actions. Non-canon choices cause the game to split off, leading to often disastrous non-canon endings. All endings save for one are accompanied by short opinionated commentary from Firo Prochainezo as voiced by Hiroyuki Yoshino, his Japanese voice actor from the 2007 anime adaptation. Ending 3's commentary is given by Upham, not Firo.
In order to unlock everything, the player should first play through the Local Express episode, followed by the Special Express episode; a limited number of non-canon choices are available on first play-through. After completing the Special Express episode, the player is then led through a bonus chapter written specifically for the game, "A Delightful Young Man Episode." There are no choices to be made during the bonus chapter. Finally, after completing the bonus chapter, the player is allowed to freely replay portions of the game with new choices now appearing.
Bonus Reservation Content
Customers who reserved the game in advance received a ninety-six page paperback novel titled『バッカーノ！ 1931 時刻表 The Grand Punk Railroad』("Baccano! "1931 Timetable The Grand Punk Railroad") by Ryohgo Narita as a bonus reservation privilege.
The novel is written in the fashion of a 'choose-your-own-adventure' story, in which you wake up in New York the morning after the Flying Pussyfoot leaves Chicago (December 31, 10 AM), expecting a certain passenger to arrive on the train in a few hours' time. So begins Paragraph 1, which ends with the choice to proceed to Paragraph 31 or Paragraph 55; from this point forward, the reader can pursue multiple branching story routes depending on the choices you make. Along the way, you will meet familiar characters from the series as well as new characters from the game, such as Darius and Nancy Lute.
There are fifty-nine possible endings for the player to reach over the course of the game. Out of the fifty-nine endings, only three in total are 'correct' and reflect the true events that took place.
Ending No. 1: Local Train episode
Ending No. 2: Express Train episode
Ending 2 is the canon ending of Special Express Train, including the numerous epilogues that address what happens to characters after their arrival in New York.
Ending No. 3: A Delightful Young Man episode
The third ending is one of the three aforementioned True endings and is only accessible to the player once they have completed both the Local Train and Express Train episodes. It is a sort of bonus chapter, and plays once the player either reads or skips through the credits.
The ending is introduced to the player by Upham as an account of his encounter with the immortal Elmer C. Albatross aboard the train, and the involvement of Lebreau Fermet Viralesque. All dialogue in the chapter is voiced.
Click "Expand" for a full summary of the third ending.
Turner, having been kicked out of the dining car into second class, is fearfully making his way through the train when a man with a pleasant demeanor and bangs that cover his eyes invites him into his compartment. This man introduces himself as a former BOI agent by the name of Victor Talbot and, when Turner says he will pay him for it, offers to investigate the train for a good hiding place. He leaves Turner alone for a while before returning to lead him to a potential hiding place: the closet in which Mary Beriam was hidden until she was found by a white suit and then taken captive by Chané Laforet. Turner is alarmed by the body of the white suit, and "Victor" informs him that the murder was committed by the boy from the dining car (referring to Czeslaw Meyer). Turner is unsettled by the thought that a child could be so vicious, but feels more confident when "Victor" gives him the white suit's rifle to defend himself with. However, "Victor" then vanishes, leaving Turner alone and paralyzed with fear.
Some hours later, a Lemur by the name of Upham sits in a steerage car, tied hand and foot by Jacuzzi Splot and his friends. He thinks over the chaos on the train, his likely fate, and his unspoken but obviously unrequited love for Chané until a cheerful-looking man shows up and, without any prompting at all, readily unties him. Upham considers this strange, since the man identifies him as a member of the terrorists; he attempts to threaten the man at knifepoint to get him to explain his actions. However, instead of feeling threatened, the man takes a hold of his hand and stabs the knife into his own throat, demonstrating that he is an Immortal. The man guesses that the Lemures are working for Huey Laforet, and that causes Upham to realize that this man's body is the same as Huey's. He asks if the man knows Huey, and the man confirms that he does and introduces himself as Elmer C. Albatross.
At about the same time, a 'shadow' creeps through the train looking for Czes and gloating over the traps he has set should Czes encounter one of the people, like Turner, that he has spoken to. He heads for the conductors' cabin in the caboose.
Upham and Elmer are also headed for the conductors' cabin, Elmer chattering away while Upham continues to be greatly disquieted. Even the bloody state of the conductors' cabin does not disturb Elmer, who is more concerned with how soon the deceased's families will be able to recover from their deaths. However, before they can continue their conversation, someone stabs Upham in the arm to get him out of the way. Elmer and the newcomer recognize each other, and while the newcomer is distracted, Upham takes the opportunity to stab him in the stomach, causing him to fall to the floor. However, he soon gets up again, laughing, as he is an Immortal too.
Elmer moves between the two of them and, at Upham's request, introduces the newcomer as Lebreau Fermet Viralesque. However, he elects not to introduce Upham to Fermet for Upham's own safety.
Fermet attempts to fake a pleasant demeanor for a few more seconds, but Elmer encourages him to just be himself instead, concerned that his fake demeanor is probably tiring. So Fermet drops the act and rants about how much he loathes Elmer. What follows is a conversation that flies straight over Upham's head, its subject ranging from how Elmer feels about Huey to how Fermet feels about Czes to how each of them got onto the train (Fermet by stowing away; Elmer by buying tickets from the owners of Dolce). Though Elmer offers to give one of those two tickets to Fermet for when the conductor checks tickets as they get off the train, Fermet is disgusted by the idea of pretending to be married to Elmer and points out that they would not be able to use false names anyway.
Fermet then makes another attempt to stab Upham, but Elmer gets between them and takes the blow. Elmer then proceeds to drag Fermet towards the back of the train, fearing for the happiness of the passengers if Fermet were to remain on the train. Fermet struggles, but is unable to break Elmer's grasp; instead, he decides to make sure Elmer falls off the train with him. Elmer resigns himself to as much, but Upham grabs him at the last second, so only Fermet falls.
Upham asks why Elmer keeps saving his life. The answer—that Elmer wants him to smile—is even creepier to him than Fermet is. But before he can dwell too long on that thought, a man in a blood-drenched conductor's uniform challenges their presence in the conductor's cabin. Upham recognizes him as the Rail Tracer and panics, thinking he will be killed, but Elmer just apologizes and says they will leave. In any case, Chané's knives stab through the wall of the cabin, nicking the conductor's ear and distracting him, and the conductor excuses himself to the roof.
Elmer decides to head to the dining car to see if they need cheering up, and Upham makes up an excuse to stay in the freight car, not wanting to spend any more time with Elmer. Once Elmer has left, Upham is able to smile a little at his absurdity—but only when thinking of him as a character in a story. So, instead of going to show Elmer his smile, he decides to take hold of his own destiny, concluding the episode.
What makes the bonus chapter/ending significant is that all of it was entirely new, never-before-seen canonical information at the time of the game's release. On one level, it revealed what happened to Turner after he was kicked out of the dining car, and what happened to the Lemur that Jacuzzi and Nice Holystone tied up and interrogated in the second light novel (aka Upham, unnamed at the time. The game is his first named appearance). On another level, it confirms that Elmer and Fermet were aboard the Flying Pussyfoot, which had been alluded to in 2002 (Side B): Blood Sabbath.
The contents in Ending Three would finally be confirmed almost a year later with the publication of the fourteenth light novel in January 2009. In Another Junk Railroad, Upham recounts his encounters with Elmer and Fermet to a false reporter.
Alternate universe endings
In addition to the canon endings described above and distinct from most of the short endings, there are two Alternate Universe storylines of significant size. They unlock after one completes the Delightful Young Man episode, and the game offers a hint as to where they are located.
Ending No. 4: Brave of Death
This episode is reached by having Jacuzzi state unequivocally, when he hears explosives from first class, that they are Nice's; he recognizes them by sound.
Click "Expand" for a summary of the fourth ending.
As Jacuzzi exits the dining car and heads for first class, Jon Panel spots the "aura of two dragons" on Jacuzzi's back and wonders if the tiger has awakened. Once in first class, Jacuzzi comes across a group of men (led by their employer Turner) holding Nice captive. Turner and a masked man exit the car, leaving his subordinate Joe to deal with Jacuzzi.
Jacuzzi is rescued by Chef Gregoire, who takes care of Joe and explains that Turner's flunkies belong to a secret organization of elite fighters called Money Dragon who have clandestinely affected history for centuries. Apparently Gregoire used to be a member of Money Dragon, and though he defeated Joe he is not willing to fight the rest of the organization alongside Jacuzzi to save Nice. However, he is willing to teach Jacuzzi a useful acupuncture technique via fish knife, and he proceeds to acupuncture Jacuzzi. He warns Jacuzzi that the acupuncture will start to viciously hurt in about twenty minutes, so he had better defeat the Money Dragon before then.
With machine gun in hand Jacuzzi proceeds into the next first-class car, which is empty and white. A suited man (Togo) wielding a katana appears, and slices Jacuzzi's gun in half. Jacuzzi escapes into the next car.
The next car resembles a Wild West saloon, and is full of cowboys. Jon, having been captured, serves as one of its bartenders. He and Jacuzzi are able to escape when Togo bursts in after them and finds himself in a face off against the cowboys. The car after that is Chinese-themed, and a woman called Nancy confronts Jacuzzi and Jon. When Nancy's chest starts hurting when Jacuzzi tears up, Jon explains that a demon is sealed behind Jacuzzi's eyes, and that he can use some of the demon's magic. Nancy escapes through a window after warning Jacuzzi that he is not allowed to die before she kills him.
Jacuzzi and Jon reach the final car (decorated like a high-class restaurant) just in time to stop the crucial part of Turner's plan and rescue Nice. Turner orders the masked man (Money Dragon's leader) to attack Jacuzzi, but the man reveals he is in the pay of Manfred Beriam and knocks Turner out. When Nice and Jacuzzi realize his voice sounds familiar, the man removes his mask to reveal a face that looks exactly like Jacuzzi's.
It turns out that this is Jacuzzi's brother Bress (also translated as Blaise), who started training with Money Dragon after he fell out of an Arizona tower some time ago. Apparently, he is doing 'all of this' in order to win Nice's heart, since he always beat Jacuzzi in everything but Nice's affections. Jon thinks that this is extremely bad storytelling given that Bress has never been foreshadowed, and opines that Bress should let Jacuzzi have this one good thing in his life. Jacuzzi is overjoyed to see that his brother is alive, and Nice lays out her reasons for why she loves Jacuzzi.
Bress switches tactics and claims he is a fake Jacuzzi, to no avail. Fang Lin-Shan arrives, explaining that he made it through the other cars because a monster has been making all the Money Dragon members apologize for their actions. Without warning, Gregoire's acupuncture kicks in and the pain cripples Jacuzzi, just in time for Turner to wake up and attack him. Nancy appears, and she and Nice beg Jacuzzi to hang in there. The car explodes, and sends everyone flying.
By the time the train arrives in Pennsylvania Station, Jacuzzi is wrapped up in bandages from head to toe. He is accompanied by both Nice and Nancy, who glare at each other.
Endings No. 5 and 6: The Special Quiz Episode
This episode is reached by choosing, as the young conductor, to tell the story of the "Special Quiz" instead of the Rail Tracer. That choice unlocks an alternate universe in which almost every character on the train is part of a secret trivia society with the exception of Jacuzzi Splot, who winds up playing along and serves as the point-of-view character.
Click "Expand" for a summary of the fifth and sixth endings.
The trivia game is to be held on the Flying Pussyfoot this time, with the Young Conductor—Claire Stanfield—serving as the "Quiz Master." The game starts with three rounds of true/false questions, answered by going to one cabin for "true" and a different cabin for "false." Those who get this question wrong are disqualified, but not forced to play a penalty game. Furthermore, when Claire explains the answer to each question, he makes references to things that happen in 2008, the year the DS game came out, further adding to the surreal feeling of this scenario.
Once Jacuzzi clears the first round, he proceeds to the next round, in which there is a penalty game. Round two is kind of a scavenger hunt: the questions are hidden in envelopes somewhere within the cabins. The task is to find an envelope–only one, mind–and bring it to Claire up on the roof of the fuel car. Stockpiling envelopes and opening the envelopes on one's own are both strictly forbidden. And only five people will progress to the next round. Those who do not progress must play a penalty game—they must walk! Claire takes them to the caboose and then detaches it, forcing them to walk to the next station, which is "only" fifty miles away.
The five people who progress are Jacuzzi, Isaac Dian (with Miria Harvent as his cheer squad), Chané (who had at one point been disqualified, but re-qualified herself by catching a cheater), Ladd Russo, and "Thomas" (actually Czeslaw Meyer). Again, those who answer incorrectly are forced to face a penalty game.
Only Jacuzzi and Isaac answer their round three questions correctly, so the next round is the final one—and it is hosted at the top of the Empire State Building. The final round is a rapid-fire buzzer-oriented event; the first person to answer ten questions correctly wins. Jacuzzi finds himself hard-pressed, not only because Isaac is more familiar with the game, but also because Isaac has a lot of absurdly random knowledge. But when Isaac does not know something he knows he does not know it, so in those cases Jacuzzi has plenty of time to think. Eventually, when they reach a 9–9 tie, Jacuzzi is able to answer the last question (which was the most recent state added to the United States?) correctly. He wins five million dollars and a year's supply of stew.
Two endings feature crossovers with other Dengeki Bunko properties.
Ending 21: Vamp!
This ending is reached by answering "Bram Stoker" when Miria asks Isaac what the name of Frankenstein's monster is.
After Isaac gives that confident answer, something bursts through the window, and blood-red letters proceed to form on the wall. The letters chide Isaac and Miria for their mishmash of incorrect knowledge and introduce themselves as the vampire known as Gerhardt von Waldstein. Gerhardt also encourages people to read Vamp!, another series by Narita. Isaac and Miria, convinced that an invisible vampire is in the hallway with them, flee.
Ending 53: Gakuen Kino
This ending is reached when Czes introduces himself to the Rail Tracer as "Kino." It features Kino, a Japanese schoolgirl, and Hermes, a sentient phone strap, from the series Gakuen Kino by Keiichi Sigsawa. The narration style also shifts to an extremely self-aware, self-parodying format.
Kino and Hermes wonder why this boy has introduced himself by Kino's name, but as they are discussing it, Claire goes ahead and rips out Czes' throat. Kino is aghast that he would do such a thing to a child; Claire is aghast that she does not seem to have a ticket. To distract him, Kino shouts, "What is that?!" as Czes regenerates. Czes explains that he is immortal, and as Claire is trying to figure out whether to take care of him or the stowaway girl first, Kino pulls out an (anachronistic) submachine gun and uses it to drive Claire out into the hall, then escapes back into her own world with Czes, planning to use him to stop bullets.
Other significant endings
A pair of devastatingly possible endings can be reached by having Ladd take Claire with him as well as Lua when he leaps off the train near the end of the night.
While Claire is simply frustrated by the fact that he will be late to New York, his absence causes problems throughout the train. Claire is not around to advise the engineers to keep the train's speed up, so when Nice's bombs go off in first class, they throw the brakes.
Ending 39: Chané disappears with the dawn
Jacuzzi's Gang still manages to take control of the dining car, but when Jacuzzi and Nice go up to the roof, Spike snipes the both of them. Meanwhile, though the remnants of Jacuzzi's gang have control of the dining car, Goose comes in and burns everything with a flamethrower. Spike rejoins him, and Goose gives the order that everyone in the dining car should be slaughtered to leave no witnesses behind. However, Chané slits their throats, leaps off the train, and disappears into the morning mist, determined to save Huey on her own.
Ending 58: Misfortune falls like dominoes
Elsewhere, Rachel encounters a panicked Turner; however, since Claire is not present to interrupt their confrontation she attacks Turner on her own, beating him rather thoroughly but driving herself past the point of recovery in the process. She dies.
Elsewhere, Czeslaw is still trapped beneath the train, and Isaac is nearly at a point when he can rescue him when the brakes are thrown. The change in momentum nearly throws him from the train, but Isaac holds him fast. Czes struggles to hold onto consciousness, aware that Isaac is immortal and terrified of being eaten. As the train stops, Miria jumps down from the train just in time for Czes to get his right hand back and immediately devour Isaac. Czes then screams as he realizes how pure and good Isaac was and shuts down completely. Miria, baffled at Isaac's sudden disappearance, sinks to her knees and wails, "Isaac? Isaac, where are you? Isaac, don't leave me..."
- As each scene of the game is given a time stamp, it is possible to construct an extremely detailed timeline of events aboard the Flying Pussyfoot. However, upon doing so one discovers that there is an odd space of about four hours (from 12:30 AM to 4:30 AM) in which nothing happens at all.
- Nintendo.co.jp Official Page
- Defunct Official Site via Asciimw.jp (Archived)
- Baccano! Game Endings Index, compiled by a fan.
- Timeline of the Flying Pussyfoot, reconstructed from the game's timestamps by another fan.
- Transcription of the scene with Upham, Elmer, and Fermet.