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[COMPLETE][Mature] Friends don't let friends kill each other - Let's Play Higurashi When They Cry!

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 2:17 PM - Apr 16, 2012

12:54 PM - Oct 28, 2012 #1

Welcome to my new Let's Play! In this thread we'll play through the-

Wait. Wait, waitwaitwait. The heck's with the moonrunes in the logo? I can't read those things!

-oh. That. Well, I chose the original logo over the English one just for aesthetic reasons, but believe me, they both read the same. Well, okay, not exactly the same. The words are different, sure, but the meaning is the same. More or less. And what it says is the name of the game (for a quite broad definition of the term) we'll be running through in this LP thread: Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, also known as Higurashi When They Cry, or just Higurashi for short.

First time I hear that name. What is this Higurashi thing?

Higurashi is an episodic visual novel written by Ryukishi07 and published by the doujin circle 07th Expansion from 2002 to 2006 in Comiket and other doujin conventions. Its popularity is surprisingly high for an amateur self-published visual novel, both inside and outside Japan, and has managed to spawn many adaptations to other media: an anime full of narm and the usual QUALITY animation of Studio DEEN, but still surprisingly watchable, a handful of quite good mangas covering all the original story arcs plus some additional ones, two (hilarious) live action movies, spin-off games like Higurashi Daybreak and enhanced versions of the original game for the Nintendo DS and PS2 consoles. Not bad.

Hold on, a visual novel? Aren't those all creepy Japanese dating sims full of porn? Welp, I'm outta here...

No, wait, it's not like that at all! Granted, many (most?) visual novels fit those criteria, but Higurashi is quite different from your average dating sim.

How so?

Well, for starters, it has no dating sim elements whatsoever. The story is not about a hopelessly naive and dumb MC trying to decide which of the many young women who seem to be randomly falling for him should he pursue. There are some hints of romance in the story here and there, but it's never the driving point of the plot.

Second, and a direct consequence of the former point: there's no porn. Like, nothing at all. That's a really good thing, given the context of the story and the relative ages of some of the main characters. Ahem.

Hm. So if it's not about awkward teenage romance, then what's it about?

Higurashi is a murder mystery at heart, although it includes relevant elements from other genres. The major themes of the story are friendship and trust. Saying any more than that would be spoiler-y, so that's all you get. For now.

Lastly, the most important difference between Higurashi and most visual novels is the fact that it contains only one route, and there are no relevant decision points along the way, meaning the story is completely linear and devoid of bad ends. This can be a good and a bad thing, as we'll see.

But if there are no choices to make, then what's the point? Wouldn't this make for a very boring Let's Play?

Not really. While the actual gameplay only consists on clicking after every sentence in order to read the next one, Higurashi's story is structured in a way that's perfect for this kind of threads.

Higurashi is divided in two main halves, each of them containing four big chapters or "arcs". The first four arcs are known as the Question Arcs, and they introduce the setting, the characters and the mystery, giving the reader clues about its solution. The second half of the game (called Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai) holds the four Answer Arcs, which gradually give us the solutions to the enigmas of the first half while introducing their own questions. By the end of the eighth arc the mystery will be solved.

So, what's to do in a Let's Play with a game like this? Easy. All readers are encouraged to speculate a lot, form their own theories and post them in the thread, even if they sound far-fetched or illogical. They're also encouraged to shoot down and debate opposing theories, all in a civil way, of course. There won't be any points awarded for any correct guesses (the game is old, spoilers exist and people love to cheat!), but no one can take from you the satisfaction of unraveling the mysteries of Hinamizawa before anyone else.

Although, a word of warning: it's said that the Question Arcs don't give the player enough information to completely deduce the correct solution to the enigma. Despite that, with some guesswork and a little bit of imagination it's possible to get quite close to a complete answer, or at the very least a partial but quite satisfactory one. Do your best!

Okay, that sounds mildly interesting. What's the format going to be like?

Mixed, and quite a bit redundant. Higurashi is frequently called a "sound novel" instead of a "visual novel" given the high importance of music and sound effects in the impact the story has on the reader, while the visuals are mostly secondary. Thus, doing a simple screenshot + text LP would not feel "complete" to me, even if I provide links to the OST at the right points of the story (the music, by the way, is good in the first half and absolutely amazing in the second, so look forward to it). On the other hand, doing a full video run would be problematic, since audio commentary would just get in the way and annotations and such are awkward to the extreme. Also, I don't have a mic. Oops.

Thus, I've decided to do both. Each update will be primarily screenshot-based, with the text of those that have to be left out due to the 50-images-per-post limit transcribed by yours truly, plus my own commentary added in in italics, and will also contain links to the game's original music wherever it's appropriate. But I'll also provide a full video covering the same part of the game, complete with music and sound effects for those of you willing to experience the game in full, but free of any commentary, be it spoken or written. That way, everyone can choose how they want to follow this run. You can even do both if you like!

Neato. Now, this being a Japanese amateur game of sorts it's surely been translated by a bunch of nerds on the Internet, with sloppy grammar and lots of mistakes everywhere. Am I right?

No, thankfully you aren't. Higurashi has been officially translated and digitally distributed in the West by Mangagamer. Now, this doesn't automatically mean that their translation job was stellar. There are some mistakes here and there and lots of awkward phrasing, but overall it's quite readable. Mangagamer's greatest sin, though, was cutting content from the original games, including some of the OST tracks and a few minigames. This is more noticeable in the second half of the game, Higurashi Kai.

Luckily, "a bunch of nerds on the Internet" jumped in, managing not only to restore some of the lost content (the missing music tracks, most importantly), but also creating patches that improve the games in different ways, most noticeably replacing the charming but decidedly amateur-ish graphics of the PC version (those hands...) with the crispier but somewhat lacking in personality and expressiveness ones from the PS2 remake. I've applied all these patches to my copy, so that's why some of the screenshots will look different from what you may find in Mangagamer's site.

Let's imagine for a second that I watched that supposedly half-decent anime adaptation at some point. Do I gain anything from following this?

Well, at the very least you get to see how badly DEEN butchered the original. :sweatdrop: But seriously, while the anime version was decent most of the time and unintentionally (I hope?) hilarious at certain points, it does manage to ignore and miss lots of important stuff going on in the story. This happens the most in the first season, in which they managed to squeeze six arcs into twenty-five episodes, thus rushing the heck out of some parts. The second season is better since they only have to deal with the final two arcs, plus some extra recap episodes at the start that help patch some of the holes left open by the first half of the show, but it's still incomplete. As most adaptations are bound to be, on the other hand.

So, you can use this LP as a rewatch of sorts, only this time you'll be sacrificing DEEN's QUALITY animation for a good amount of "extras", including better pacing, lots of important (and not that important) background information about the setting and the characters, and the TIPs, just to name a few VN-exclusive perks. You'll surely have fun pointing out how much the anime screwed up some particular points when they appear in-thread, or may even find yourself thinking "oooh, now that makes more sense!" from time to time.

Now, if there aren't any more questions-

Oh, just one more, sorry. You've totally stolen ChorpSaway's format and layout, right?

Yup! By the way, go read Chorp's Little Busters! run if you haven't already! I would, but I'm still hoping that the anime will turn out to be decent and I don't want to spoil myself. :v:

Now, if there aren't any more questions... No? Oh, finally. Well then, let's get some ground rules set before we start, okay?

Rule 1: all speculation and theories should ideally be put in spoiler boxes and marked as such. In the remote chance that any of you dear readers doesn't know how to include a spoiler box in your posts or how to rename it to something more significant than "spoiler", I'm sure the answer you need is somewhere in the FAQ thread, all the way up in Dry Erase. If it isn't, just write {spoiler=title of your spoiler box}Content of your spoiler box{/spoiler}, only replacing { and } with [ and ]. Easy, right?

Rule 2: this rule goes for anyone with knowledge about Higurashi in any of its forms (game, anime, manga, whatever): NO SPOILERS, PLEASE. I'd bold it, underline it and make it size 36, but I think putting it in all caps should be enough. If for whatever reason you really need to include minor spoilers about parts of the story not covered yet in the thread, or about events that have been covered but not properly explained yet, please, for all that's good and pretty, do it inside a big fat spoiler box and name it something like "MASSIVE SPOILERS, DON'T READ UNLESS YOU REALLY DON'T MIND ABOUT THIS." If in doubt, don't include them at all. Simple.

I'll be quite lenient with the first rule, especially when there's discussion going on about a particular theory, but the second will be enforced as much as I can, because badly placed spoilers can really kill the enjoyment of anyone following this LP without previous knowledge about the story. So don't make me call the mods, okay? You don't want to see Pillow angry. Really, you don't.

With that out of the way, let's get started, shall we?
[+] Table of contents
Higurashi When They Cry (Question arcs)

Prologue ~ Welcome to Hinamizawa (right here!)

Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Classmates
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Hinamizawa
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ All Fun and Games
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Zombies!
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Fanservice
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Festival (I)
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Festival (II)
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Curse
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Lies
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Needles
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Determination
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Rena (I)
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Rena (II)
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Downfall (I)
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Downfall (II)
Onikakushi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ A phone call
Onikakushi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ All Cast Review Session!

Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Reprise
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Double Trouble
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Curry Rice
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Unity
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Sweet and Sour (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Sweet and Sour (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Old Scars
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Feast (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Feast (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Red-handed (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Red-handed (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Cats and Dogs (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Cats and Dogs (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Despair (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Despair (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Doppelgänger (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Doppelgänger (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Demon (I)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Demon (II)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Demon (III)
Watanagashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Demon (IV)
Watanagashi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ All Cast Review Session!

Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Big mouths and little sisters (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Big mouths and little sisters (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Food for the soul (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Food for the soul (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Hinamizawa Fighters (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Hinamizawa Fighters (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Bonds (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Bonds (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Unwelcome Guests
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Anguish (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Anguish (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Ways to salvation (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Ways to salvation (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Breakdown (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Breakdown (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Preparations
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Killing in the name (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Killing in the name (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Killing in the name (III)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ A new world (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ A new world (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ A new world (III)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Torment (I)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Torment (II)
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Retribution
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Epilogue ~ Killing curse
Tatarigoroshi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ All Cast Review Session!

Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Kidnapping (I)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Kidnapping (II)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ War zone (I)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ War zone (II)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Playing games (I)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Playing games (II)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Fake (I)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Fake (II)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Fake (III)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Foresight (I)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Foresight (II)
Himatsubushi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ After the end
Himatsubushi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ All Cast Review Session!
* * * * *
Higurashi When They Cry Kai (Answer arcs)

Meakashi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Runaway (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Runaway (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Home
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ First sight
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Seeds (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Seeds (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Blame (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Blame (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ The fourth year (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ The fourth year (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Punishment (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Punishment (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Theories
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Trodden Path (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Trodden Path (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Rebellion (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Rebellion (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Payback (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Payback (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Payback (III)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Counterattack (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Counterattack (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Counterattack (III)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Promises (I)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Promises (II)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Promises (III)
Meakashi-hen, Chapter 14 ~ Insanity
Meakashi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ Staff Room

Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ To the death!
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Happiness
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Hideout (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Hideout (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Changes (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Changes (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Confrontation (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Confrontation (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Family (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Family (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Maggots (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Maggots (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Scrapbooks
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Conspiracy (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Conspiracy (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ On the run (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ On the run (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Trust (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Trust (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Atonement (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ Atonement (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Last stand (I)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Last stand (II)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Last stand (III)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Chapter 13 ~ Last stand (IV)
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Epilogue ~ The demon's script
Tsumihoroboshi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ Staff Room

Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Another World (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Another World (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Small hopes (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Small hopes (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Rolling sixes (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ Rolling sixes (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Allies (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Allies (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Collapse (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ Collapse (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Another way (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Another way (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ United (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ United (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Pressure (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Pressure (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Pressure (III)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Guardians (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ Guardians (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Fate denied (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Fate denied (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Fate denied (III)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ A strong will (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ A strong will (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ The last day (I)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ The last day (II)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ The last day (III)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ The last day (IV)
Minagoroshi-hen, Chapter 12 ~ The last day (V)
Minagoroshi-hen, Extra Chapter ~ Staff Room

Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 1 ~ Origins
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 2 ~ Connections
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ God's mercy (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 3 ~ God's mercy (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Count to four (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 4 ~ Count to four (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Connecting pieces

Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 9, 18, 23 & 26
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 30, 39, 13 & 17
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 24, 29, 40 & 12
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 5, 6, 4 & 1
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 14, 10, 19 & 2
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 27, 38, 28 & 11
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 7, 15, 35, & 3
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 37, 32, 31, 16 & 8
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 34, 33, 36, 22 & 25
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 20, 21 & 42
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Pieces 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49 & 50
Matsuribayashi-hen ~ Piece 51

Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ New pieces (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 5 ~ New pieces (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Gods and policemen (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 6 ~ Gods and policemen (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Assemble (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Assemble (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 7 ~ Assemble (III)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Deception (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 8 ~ Deception (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ (P)reparations (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 9 ~ (P)reparations (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (I)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (II)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (III)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (IV)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (V)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (VI)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (VII)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (VIII)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 10 ~ Attack! (IX)
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter 11 ~ Victory
Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 1 ~ Final TIP, Staff Room, Piece 52
Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 2 ~ Other extras and final goodbyes
[+] Prologue ~ Welcome to Hinamizawa
Video version. For future videos I'll try to get that ugly window frame out of the way, provided my software complies.
* * * * *

Here we have Higurashi's first three chapters or "arcs": Onikakushi-hen, Watanagashi-hen and Tatarigoroshi-hen. There's a fourth chapter called Himatsubushi-hen that will appear in this same screen once we complete these three. Onikakushi-hen is the logical starting point and the only one that's unlocked right now, so that's where we'll go.

Oh, and never mind the description saying that the difficulty is very high. There's no difficulty in left-clicking a million times (although tell that to the gazillion Diablo players throughout the world, me included). This probably refers to the difficulty in guessing what's
actually going on in this chapter. Anyway, let's start!


*creepy children's laughter*

...Setting the mood right from the start, huh.

Oh, false alarm. We start with some nice and not foreboding in the slightest poetry, nothing scary at-

*swoosh* *smack!*


Good to know, but-

*swoosh* *smack!*

-what's up with that noise?

*swoosh* *smack!* *splotch*

*swoosh* *smack!*

I trusted her.

*swoosh* *smack!*

No... I do trust her.

*swoosh* *smack!*

I trust her even now.

*swoosh* *smack!*

But I'm starting to come to a realization. The only reason I trusted her is because I don't want to admit the truth.

*swoosh* *smack!*

I forced myself to believe in her... But I'm sick and tired of this emotion...

*swoosh* *smack!*

The tears flow out from my eyes and soak my face...

My mechanical movement stops, and the room is filled with silence.

You're gonna learn to love and hate this little sound, I tell you... "Higurashi" is actually the name of a species of cicadas which only live in Japan and only sing in the early morning and late evening. This is their call, and the most recurrent sound effect throughout the whole story.

Also, this is what the original PC backgrounds look like: somewhat blurry pictures (as in actual photos, taken with a camera in a real location) with some filters and recoloring applied to them. The patches I used replace about 80-90% of them with the hand-drawn PS2 equivalents, but miss a few, either for technical reasons or because they couldn't find a direct equivalent in the PS2 version. It just happens to be that the first BG we come across in-game is one of the missed ones. Sigh.

I'm the only one crying. She didn't even cry.
When she was repeating those words, she had no expression or emotion on her face. If she doesn't have any tears to shed for me, neither do I.

I shouldn't have to cry for her.

But why is it that it hurts so much, and I can't stop crying...?
Is it because I want to believe that she didn't betray me...?

My heart is badly torn apart.

I wanted to leave behind this painful feeling.
But I chose not to do that...

It could have been a lot easier if I got rid of this pain...
I knew it, but I still chose to believe in her.
Only I know how difficult it was for me.

I'm not getting rid of my pain. I'm just leaving it with her.

Just like laying flowers...

*swoosh* *smack!*

I appreciated her kindness

*swoosh* *smack!*

I appreciated her pretty smile.

*swoosh* *smack!*

I loved rubbing her head.

*swoosh* *smack!*

I loved seeing her shy face.

*swoosh* *smack!* *splotch*

This is the last one.

After this swing, I'll forget everything.

This is for you...

My first and last flowers for you.

*swoosh* *SMACK!*

* * * * *
Well, that was some introduction. Wonder who was doing what to who, but it surely didn't sound pleasant... It can only go downhill from here, right?

*train sounds*

Wait, where are we now? A train?

I went back to the city for the funeral. It's certainly been a while.
I was living here just a month ago, but I was overwhelmed by the crowd of the city.

Skyscrapers and wide roads...
The noisy melody that comes from the street lights...
Even the loud public election speeches made me feel at home.

There's nothing exciting in the place I live now.
No fast food places, not even a vending machine.
No record stores, no restaurants, no arcades... and of course there's no ice cream shop.
They have some in the nearest village, but it takes an hour to get there by bike.

However, I don't really feel inconvenienced.

There were record stores, arcades and ice cream parlors where I used to live, but I didn't go to them that often.
In fact, I lived there for ten years, but I never even went to the ice cream parlor.

I should've gone at least once...
It's too late now though...

...Someone is still apologizing.

All mistakes should be forgiven.
There's no mistake that can't be fixed.
She just has to be more careful next time.

Yet, she continues to apologize...

Did she do something so terrible that it can't be undone?

I don't know what she did, but if it's something irreversible, that's all the more reason she should be forgiven.
No matter how much she apologizes, nothing will change.

But even so, she continues to apologize with that pathetic voice...

Hey, whoever is being apologized to... just go ahead and forgive her, won't you?
She sounds so miserable... you know?

Hey, look, a PS2 background! And our POV character finally has a name. Say hello to Maebara Keiichi. We'll be watching the world through his eyes for a long while.

We changed trains for hours.
The view outside the window makes me forget that I'm still in the same country, even the same time period...

Fun fact: Hinamizawa, the village in which Higurashi is set, is actually a carbon copy of a real Japanese village called Shirakawa-go, chosen as one of UNESCO's World Heritage Sites for its accurate representation of a particular style of Japanese rural architecture. I happened to visit the place with friends five years ago when I still hadn't heard a thing about Higurashi, so I couldn't nerd out all over the place, but it was still a very beautiful and interesting village, and one of the pictures we took looks almost exactly the same as the image shown here.

And with this beautiful panorama, this brief introduction ends. Welcome to Hinamizawa, hope you all enjoy your stay~
In the next update: main characters, assemble!
In progress: One Manager, Fifty Years, All the Cups: Neon plays Football Manager 2016 (Last update: Oct 8th 2017)

COMPLETE: Friends don't let friends kill each other - Let's Play Higurashi When They Cry! (Upd: 09/25 - Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 2 ~ Other extras and final goodbyes)
COMPLETE: The gold, the witch, and the corpses in the wardrobe - Let's Play Umineko: When They Cry! (Upd: 05/21 - Final extras (II) ~ Final extras!)
[+] Spoiler
On hiatus: Glimpses of an Unfamiliar World - A Touhoumon Blue Storylocke (Upd: 04/16 - Chapter 4-2)
On hiatus: Magical Monster Captor Chihiro - A Magical Girl Obsidian Storylocke (Upd: 06/25 - Chapter 2)

Unova League Champion
Unova League Champion
Joined: 8:52 PM - Sep 28, 2011

1:47 PM - Oct 28, 2012 #2

Neon I do not get angry that easily D:

also why are you only playing higurashi when they cry

would it be better to play when they're laughing
(updated 13.10.18)

~ you're all invited to the official nuzlocke writing chat ~
~ adrian ramos drew all my avatars, but not on purpose ~

"It wath anger from the patht" - Today at 4:44 PM
clock (32-bit) - Today at 4:44 PM
Aozora - Today at 6:22 PM

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Joined: 11:24 PM - Feb 25, 2012

3:51 PM - Oct 28, 2012 #3

Oooh, boyo, Higurashi. I've seen the anime adaptation and read the (multiple) mangas, but I never actually played the original VN. I'm going to nitpick at everything like a little bitch and laugh at people who don't know how messed up this cute VN actually is

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 6:36 AM - Jun 20, 2011

4:53 PM - Oct 28, 2012 #4

Oh boy, another VN readthrough here! And it's basically the complete antithesis to the other one!
I personally haven't seen either the VN or any of the adaptations of Higurashi, but I've heard good things, so I'll make sure to keep an eye on this thread. The opening certainly leaves quite a bit to be explained and answered and I'm intrigued.
[+] Spoliers for LB! Talk
From the first four episodes of Little Busters!, a lot of what you said about the Higurashi anime adaptation is true here, mainly in that the pace is lightning quick in order to fit all the content in. Though it's a high quality adaptation and tends to deliver on the same impact and stuff so far, they've passed where I am in my LP by a fairly wide margin already. Really, if you're gonna watch the anime, you might as well read through the LP as well, since I'm gonna take much longer than they are to finish and it's just gonna add supplementary stuff that they couldn't fit into the anime format.

Conqueror of the Rustboro Gym
Conqueror of the Rustboro Gym
Joined: 8:06 AM - Feb 23, 2011

6:24 AM - Oct 29, 2012 #5

Oooooh, a Higurashi LP! I've seen the anime and read some of the manga, but I've never played/read the original... I can't wait to see the theories of the people who haven't seen it yet...

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 2:17 PM - Apr 16, 2012

10:35 AM - Oct 29, 2012 #6

[+] Replies go here
@Pillow: your wrath is like the yeti, the sasquatch or any other mythical monsters: nobody has ever seen it, yet it is assumed to be terrifying!

@Sperance: and you're gonna have a lot of fun doing so. Thanks for reading!

@ChorpSaway: oooh, a virgin! Be ready for anything and everything, and don't let the slow buildup starting in this update scare you away. Regarding LB!, I just hope that they won't try to cram everything in a half-cour series. If CLANNAD needed fifty episodes and still had to leave some routes out... It can't be all bad, though, even in the worst case it still has Yui Horie <3.

@Hawkfire: same as Sperance, have fun watching people stumble around blindly, and look out for the small differences between the anime and the original.
Nice to see interest in this run from the start! Now, let's see what Hinamizawa has in stock for us, shall we? Today's main theme is: character introductions!
[+] Onikakushi-hen, part 1 ~ Classmates
Video version, part 1 and part 2. Now with 100% less ugly frames!
* * * * *
*sounds of chirping birds*

...Wait, this looks like a normal, peaceful morning. Where did our murder mystery with horror elements go?

Outside the window is nothing but green.
All I see are trees.
Even our next door neighbor's house is far from here.

I'm the one that governs this magnificent view and fresh morning air.

I inhale deeply, filling my lungs with air. Since I moved to Hinamizawa, I have found that, for the first time, air can actually smell good.

Our first taste of Mangagamer's translation's dodgy grammar. Consistent verbal tenses, how do. Be ready for occasional weird phrasing and, above everything else, lots and lots of ellipses...

My dad is an artist. A rather unique job to say the least.
His daily life is quite carefree. He wakes up, sleeps, and works whenever he feels like it.

When I was in elementary school, I envied my dad's lifestyle.
My dad was thrilled when I told him that I also wanted to be an artist.
Of course, I didn't tell him that it was simply because I thought it looked easy to be like him.

Mom sets breakfast on the table. Seaweed, pickles, egg and grilled salmon.

My mom scares me sometimes.
It's the perfect, most idealistic breakfast. Unlike my dad, Mom is always at the top of her game

She's in a good mood as usual, humming a song as she brings over a pot of miso soup.

Mom: "I'm glad you've been waking up on your own since we moved here, Keiichi."
Keiichi: "I wake up early so I can eat breakfast."

I talk back at her like a mischievous boy after being appraised by her.

Mom smiles softly as she sees me eat with a healthy appetite.
Mom: "I'm glad you've been eating breakfast every day since we moved here."

When I was living in the city, I had a hard time waking up every morning.
I overslept everyday and I rarely ate breakfast.

Being forced to go to cram school, boycotting my mom's breakfast was a way of showing rejection.

I guess I was in a rebellious stage...
How ungrateful was I? My mom worked hard every morning to prepare the breakfast, but I ignored it.
I would beat that kid up if I was living with someone like that...

I feel embarrassed about going to school with a girl every morning...
However, at the same time, I can't let my classmate down. She's just trying to be nice to me.

I wonder how early she shows up every morning...

I hurry to the door after guzzling the last bit of miso soup.

That's right, Keiichi, you shouldn't make a lady wait for you! Also, nice house, man, your dad must surely be good at what he does...
* * * * *

So this is Rena. We'll be seeing her a lot from now on. She's... kinda special, in more than one way.

I hear her energetic voice in the fresh morning air.

Keiichi: "So you're early again, huh? You can sleep in every once in a while, you know?"
Rena: "I don't want to risk making you wait for me though."

She's such a nice girl...

Keiichi: "I'm just kidding. I'll wait for you."
She seems relieved to hear my words, and then she blushes.

Rena: "Oh... Thank you..."
Keiichi: "I'll wait until you show up. I'll wait forever."
Rena: "...What...? Wow... Forever...?"

Her face turns red and her head steams up from the heat.
She gets so flustered with a topic like this. I've never met a person as funny as her before. It makes me want to tease her more.

Keiichi is being mean~

Keiichi: "By the way, my mom said thank you for the pickles."
Rena: "Oh, you're welcome. How was it? Was it too salty?"

It wasn't salty at all.
It was just fine.

I should just tell her that it was delicious, but it's hard for me to say it out loud.

Keiichi: "Can I ask you something? Are you the one who made those pickles? Or was it your mom that made them?"
Rena: "What? Um... Why are you asking this? Was it... too salty for you...?"

She gets in a panic all of a sudden.

Keiichi: "You? Or your mom?"
Rena: "Why are you asking who made them...? ...Why?"
Keiichi: "My response will differ depending on who made it."
Rena: "...What...?"

Keiichi is being very mean~

She bends her fingers and starts going over the procedure.
I'm not trying to be mean, but I can't stop teasing her.
I guess I'm a bad person for feeling joy from something like this... What a bad boy!
She finally opens her mouth after hesitating.

I only hope the bad guys out there won't take advantage of her.
Good luck, Rena. I'll surely train you to become a stronger woman, I pledge in my heart.

Keiichi: "Let's go! Mion will get very mad if we make her wait!"

I wake her up from her daydream and start heading toward the school.

This strange blushing girl is Ryuugu Rena. It's only been a month since I met her, but her name is not the only strange thing about her.
* * * * *

Rena: "Mii-chan! Good morning!"

I see someone waiting for us at our next stop. She waves her hand as she notices us.

Girl number two get! Like Rena, Mion has her share of strange quirks, although in a completely different way...

Mion: "Good morning, Rena. Long time no see, Kei-chan. How many years has it been?"
Keiichi: "I was only gone for 2 days!"
Mion: "Ahaha! Is that true? But you were still so cute when I saw you the last time!"

She starts staring at me, and focuses around my lower body.
Is she talking about my crotch?

Just to be clear, she's never seen my private area before...

For starters, she's even more of a tease than Keiichi is, which is quite the achievement.

What a nasty conversation we're having on this fresh and beautiful morning.
Mion can be just like a dirty old man sometimes.

Keiichi: "Fine then. Let me show it to you. Don't you regret it, okay...?"

...and poor Rena is always caught in the middle, obviously.

Mion: "So, how was it? What was it like to be back in the big city?"

Mion finally changes the topic to something more fitting for the fresh morning.

Keiichi: "I just went there for a funeral. I was busy the whole time."
Mion: "Did you find what I asked for...? Did you...?"
Keiichi: "Hey, did you hear what I just said? I was only there for the funeral! I had no time to wander around the toy store!"
Mion: "Hey! Toy stores and hobby shops are totally different things! I can't find any foreign products around here, you know?"
Rena: "Are you talking about games again, Mii-chan?"

Mion nods as Rena asks her.

Mion is kinda like your average nerd guy who imports weird stuff from Japan, only female and in reverse. And with the added problem of living in the 80's and nowhere near a big city. Poor Mion.

Keiichi: "You can always order it from the city, right?"
Mion: "I guess so. I just neet to get some good games!"
Keiichi: "Will you get something that's simple enough for me, next time...?"

Mion is a collector of games, like card games and board games.
According to Rena, Mion's room is like a museum of domestic and international games.

Keiichi: "Let me play if there's something I can follow too, okay?"
Mion: "Sure! If you're willing to play against us... Our skills are pretty advanced, you know?"
Keiichi: "I can't wait. I'm pretty confident of my skills too!"
Rena: "Wow... Does that mean he's gonna join our group soon? Does it?"

Rena expresses her joy and looks back and forth between my face and Mion's.
Mion winks at her, and Rena gets even more excited.

Rena: "Boys like to play outside, so I never thought he'd want to join us..."

Rena seems very happy.

* * * * *

I heard they used to have more classes in the past.
However, at one point, those classes got combined and became one.
In the beginning, it felt strange being in the class, but now I feel comfortable.

I hear the kids running around early. It's loud and sounds like a kindergarten, but I'm used to it all now.

Mion was walking in front of us the whole time, but she suddenly stops and lets me go.

We're in front of the classroom.

Hey, a VN protagonist who isn't a complete idiot and doesn't walk blissfully unaware into completely obvious traps. You're racking up respect points quite quickly, Keiichi.

Rena: "What's wrong... you guys...?"
Keiichi: "Stay back, Rena. Watch out. It's her...!"
Rena: "What...? You mean... Satoko-chan...?"

Her name is Houjou Satoko.
She's a little brat who has no respect.
The way she talks really pisses me off, but I try not to get mad as an older guy.
But she has a major problem...

Keiichi: "This is an obvious trap... I see the blackboard eraser hidden above the door. I see it all, Satoko!"
I hear her smirking behind the door.

This Satoko sounds like a handful. Oh well, not all main characters have to be lovable on first sight, right?

I'm cautious after setting off traps several times since the day I transferred here.
This can only be a small trap meant to lead me into a bigger one.

It's tricky because she can be very clever. She'll catch me when I'm off guard...
I can't relax here. I always have to be extra cautious.

Mion: "It looks to me like a regular blackboard eraser. There's no rock inside or anything."

The first attack I got was a blackboard eraser with a rock inside.


Rena: "Maybe, maybe you can just slide the door quickly, and make it fall..."
Keiichi: "That's it!"

That's what Satoko is expecting me to do. She wants me to keep my attention on the eraser, while sliding the door.

Good job, Kei-

I feel something strange around my legs. It almost feels like I'm tripping over a jump rope.
Damn it!'s too late!
I fall to the ground at a bad angle.


Mion: "Watch out, Kei-chan!"


I twist my body as I hear Mion's voice, and I collapse to the floor.

Keiichi: "Ow... Ouch...!"

I see an inkstone case full of ink, placed where I was supposed to be landing.
I get chills imagining falling right into it.

Introducing Houjou Satoko, a.k.a. That Damn Brat Who Keeps Setting Traps Everywhere And Being Generally Annoying (TDBWKSTEABGA for short).

Keiichi: "That was an extra special trap, Satoko!"
Satoko: "I have no idea what you're talking about. You have my sympathy though."
Keiichi: "Why you...!!.........Ouch..."

I think I twisted my back when I fell. It's still better than hitting that inkstone, though...

And last but certainly not least, the fourth girl of the group makes her appearance. And just like Mion was Rena's polar opposite...

???: "Is your back hurt? Your pain will go away if I rub you like this..."

I think she should be patting my back, not tapping my head... but whatever. Her kindness means the most to me now.

Keiichi: "Oh, thank you. I think I'm starting to feel better because of you, Rika-chan."
Rena: "Hey, Rika-chan! Good morning!"
Rika: "Good morning Rena. Good morning to everybody..."

Rika-chan greets everybody by bowing her cute head. Rena, Mion and I also bow at her.

...Rika happens to be the omega to Satoko's alpha.

Keiichi: "Rika-chan is such a nice girl... On the other hand you... Satoko...!!"

Satoko whistles and looks away while I stare at her.

Keiichi: "Hey! Tell me that you're sorry! Say it! If not...!"

I take my right hand in front of her forehead, as if I'm going to flick her.

Satoko: "No violence! I'm innocent!"
Keiichi: "I must tell you that this will hurt badly. I can probably break a board with my flicking."
Satoko: "Aaaaaaah...! Stop! Don't come near me, you pervert!"
Keiichi: "Don't you give the wrong idea to the people around us!"

Someone pulls my shirt with a small hand.

Rika: "She just missed you because you were gone for two days."

Rika-chan is such a pure girl... Now I have no choice but to stop what I'm doing.
Satoko is closing her eyes in fear. I slowly release her.

My thoughts exactly, Keiichi... What the hell, Rika, I though you were on our side ;_;

Rena in "adorable mode." There's no force more dangerous in the whole universe. And I'm friggin' serious here.

Rena: "Why not...? She's so adorable!"
Mion: "You can't, no matter how adorable she might be!"
Rena: "I just want her for a little bit..... Can I take her with me? Can I?"

Judging by her pretty face, Rena doesn't know how bad that sounds...

According to Mion, Rena loves adorable things, and she always wants to take them back home with her.
No matter what they are or who they are...!

Mion: "You can't just kidnap her. Just give up."
Rena: "Then can I at least watch her cry? That's not a crime is it? Is it?"

Rena stares at Satoko, who is in tears.

If there's ever a kidnap case here in Hinamizawa, I would accuse Rena right away.
I'm sorry Rena. I'll come and see you in jail...!

*a bell rings*

We all clean up the mess that Satoko made. By the time the teacher is here, the classroom is clean as if nothing had happened.

Rena: "Aha ha ha, we made it on time!"
Mion: "All rise, stand straight!"

Mion, the leader of the class, gives a command to the class.
* * * * *

It's tough having only one teacher in this class.
She has to teach different things to each student.
She's often busy teaching the smaller kids.

The whole day is like a study hall for the older students like Mion, Rena and me.
Moreover, we are expected to teach younger students sometimes, so we don't really get to study much for ourselves.

In fact, their academic level is way lower than mine.
As a result, I'm forced to teach Rena and Mion instead of the teacher sometimes.

Keiichi: "I hate teaching you guys. It makes me realize just how little I really know..."
Mion: "They say if you're teaching someone, you better make sure that you know three times better than they do. You're learning more as you teach us. It's a good thing, isn't it?"

What the heck is she saying? She's supposed to be older than I am, in the first place.

Rena: "Hey Mii-chan. Keiichi-kun is doing his best to teach us. Let's study hard!"
Keiichi: "You're such a good girl, Rena... I'll make sure you can enter the best school, okay?"
Rena: "Wow... Thank you...!"
Keiichi: "I'll give you special treatment, Rena. I'll give you private lessons."
Rena: "P... Private... lesson..."

I hear a popping sound. Steam is coming out of the top of Rena's head.
What kind of private lesson is she imagining?

I would love to know what's on her mind right now.

But since this is an all-ages game you don't get to. Isn't it sad, Keiichi?

Picture taken solely for the purpose of showing Mion's pouting sprite's first appearance. She uses it much more than you would imagine given what we've seen of her character so far...

Keiichi: "Yup. If not, you can't enter a higher school."
Mion: "So you study in order to enter a higher school?"
Keiichi: "Well. I guess that's right. I know we don't need this much knowledge once we're part of society..."
Mion: "Well in this village, you can move to a higher school as long as you show up in school enough."
Keiichi: "Are you serious...?"

All this time, I was studying just to move on to a higher school.

Rena: "Yeah. There aren't many people here anyway, so they don't fail people."
Mion: "So why should we study so hard like this?"
Keiichi: "Well... I see your point but I think you should still know the basic levels..."

*a bell rings*

I hear the hand bell ringing, and class is over.

Mion: "That's it Kei-chan! Our favorite lunch time is here!"

Mion starts getting excited all of a sudden.

Rena: "Keiichi-kun... Let's eat our lunch!"

Perhaps I had a negative expression on my face. Rena smiles at me brightly.

Keiichi: "Sure! Let's eat!"

Not so much "a mixed group," but more like "I'm the only guy and I love being surrounded by girls." Keep your facts straight, Kei-chan.

Rena and Mion sit across from each other. Satoko and Rika bring their desks closer to us.

Rena: "Hurry up, Keiichi-kun!"

Rena urges me to come over, while waving her chopsticks.
She won't even open her lunch box until everyone is here.

Satoko: "I bet your lunch is just bread, Keiichi-san! Don't be ashamed to let me see!"

Even Satoko won't open her lunch until I get there.

Rika: "We'll eat after Captain Mii's order..."

I was embarrassed in the beginning, but not anymore. I would probably not open my lunch box if someone in this group was missing.
They're of different age and different sex, but they are my friends.

I'm so used to being the only guy in the group of girls.
There are some boys in the class, but they are all very young and they seem to be afraid of me.

I can't help it though.
Older guys always intimidate the younger ones.
However, girls seem to not be bothered by the age difference.

We put our lunchboxes in the middle and eat whatever we want.
I was uncomfortable in the beginning about eating other people's food like this. But now, I'm all used to it and I eat whatever I want.

Satoko: "Mmm, delicious!"
Keiichi: "Oh, this taro tastes so good. Even though it's cold!"

Rika-chan smiles after hearing my comment.

Rika: "It's only a leftover from last night's dinner..."

Rika-chan and Satoko bring the same lunch every day. Apparently, Rika-chan is preparing it for Satoko.

Relevant information, guys.

Mion: "You're so domesticated, Rika-chan."
Rena: "She's good at sewing and washing clothes too. Isn't it amazing? Isn't it?"
Satoko: "Yeah, I know. Rika is a super-girl. O ho ho ho!"
Keiichi: "Why are you bragging about it? We're talking about Rika-chan, not you!"
Rika: "Rena is a good cook too..."
Rena: "...What? Oh Um... me?"

Rena blushes after unexpectedly hearing her name in the conversation.

In fact, her lunch box is always gorgeous. It looks delicious, and it is delicious.
Everyone loves taking food from her lunch box.

Rena: "I made this one again, because you guys liked it a lot the last time. Is it good? Is it...?"
Keiichi: "It's so delicious! Hey Mion, don't be greedy!"

I get rid of Mion's chopsticks, but Satoko and Rika-chan also start aiming for the food.
Rena's lunch box is empty in a matter of seconds. No one even left anything for Rena to eat.
However Rena seems to be happy.


Satoko goes pale.

Oh, come on, Satoko. One thing's not being a good cook, and another this.

Keiichi: "Hey, even I know the difference between broccoli and cauliflower!"
Satoko: "I, I, I know it too! I do...!"

She can never fool me.

Rena: "Hey, the bottom line is, they both taste good with mayonnaise. Don't tease her too much, Keiichi-kun! And you too, Mii-chan!"

Rena tries to save Satoko, but Mion grins and walks toward her.

Mion: "I'm just doing a small cooking class here!! So Satoko... Which one is this?"

Mion picks up something with bacon wrapped around.

I cover Rika-chan's mouth quickly. How evil she is to test Satoko, using the asparagus.

Mion is clearly the evil mastermind behind anything that happens in this story. And Keiichi her devious sidekick and apprentice. There, mystery solved.

...wait, blue?! I'd put a psyduck smiley here if I wasn't already at the image limit. Rika, don't let this brat go anywhere near the kitchen, please.

Mion: "Are you sure you know the difference between the two? Sure you don't want to give up?"

That's our class leader, the oldest one in our group. The way Mion tortures is on another level.
I bet it'll be like hell for whoever is going to marry her...

Rena: "Ha! Haoooo... so adorable...!"

Rena is going crazy over Satoko's crying face. She hugs her and rubs her head with joy.
She looks so damn happy... She probably doesn't care if the world ends right now.

Satoko: "RenaRena! MiiMii is being mean to me! Waaaaaaaah!!"
Rena: "Adorable... so adorable! It's okay, little girl. Rena is going to take care of you!!"

*smack!* *smack!*


I feel like lightning just hit me.

Mion: "It's your first time, huh...? But you haven't seen... anything yet...!"
Keiichi: "Anything yet...? You mean it can be even fiercer?"


Mion and I collapse to the floor again.
I'd better watch out for Rena from now...

You almost made me feel sorry for you for a second, Satoko. Almost. And god damn it Rena's scary, in a few different ways. And we haven't seen... anything yet...!

*a bell rings*
* * * * *

As I remain silent, Rena realizes how I took her question and starts blushing.

Rena: "Oh... well... um... It's not like that, you know...?"

She meant something different.
But since I enjoy teasing her, I continue to make fun of her.

Keiichi: "Bummer... It's not like that... huh?"
Rena: "What? What...?"

I pretend I'm disappointed.

Yeah. "Pretend." Keep telling yourself that, Keiichi...

I also start laughing, and rubbing Rena's head.

Keiichi: "I was just messing around... My bad!"

Such a silly girl.

Rena: "What...? It was just a joke...? Since when, were you fooling me? When?"
Keiichi: "Not from the beginning..."
Mion: "Really? So when you blushed in the beginning, that wasn't you acting?"
Keiichi: "What...? That means..."

Damn it! Now it's totally under Mion's control!

Keiichi: "Well... you know..."

I've got nothing to say... I'm getting into deeper trouble...
Mion wound up teasing me for a while after that...

You still have a lot to learn from your master, Kei-chan...

Mion: "Oh! You're still not familiar around here in Hinamizawa, are you?"

She's actually right.
It's a shame on me, but I think I could get lost easily if I was blindfolded and spun around three times.

Keiichi: "You're right. I have no idea how to get anywhere besides going to school and to the town."
Rena: "I thought so. That's why I was thinking Mii-chan and I can take a walk with you and show you around Hinamizawa..."

That's nice. I'm really glad they're planning this for me.

Rena: "Keiichi-kun... You're not free tomorrow...? Aren't you?"

Rena looks at my face with concern.
I teased her enough today, so I'm going to be nice to her now.

Keiichi: "Naaa... I was just kidding. I'm free."
Rena: "Yeah...!"

A big smile appears on her face.

Oooh, jealous Mion~

Keiichi: "Let's go Rena. We should go out alone tomorrow! Let's just leave mean Mion behind."
Rena: "What...? Well... If that's what you want..."
Mion: "Hey! It was my plan in the first place! Don't you ignore me Maebara Keiichi!"
Keiichi: "I'm so excited about tomorrow, Rena! Do you want to pack lunch for me?"
Rena: "If that's what you want... I'll cook some for you... I will!"
Mion: "Rena! Don't you ignore me too! I'm gonna spread a rumor that you guys disappeared into a hotel together..."


I tell you, this girl's dangerous...

Rena runs away as if she's a hopping bunny.
I'm left with Mion who has passed out with a bruise on her face.

Keiichi: "Are you alright...? I thought you were at least 2 meters away from Rena..."
Mion: "Since you've been here... she's getting more powerful... Uncle Mion can't take it anymore..."

All she needs to do is be careful what she says...
Does she thinks she's funny or something?
She has to realize she's risking her life...

Pot, meet kettle...

Keiichi: "Don't give up, Mion. You're the only one who can survive Rena's punch!"
Mion: "...I was thinking it was her kick..."

What kind of fighter is this girl, Rena?
She might become a professional world-class extreme fighter someday...

And with this, a fun day full of shenanigans reaches its end. Now it's time to get ready for tomorrow's-

-uh, what's this?
[+] TIPS 1 and 2 (read after the main update!)

This menu appears each time we complete a section of the story, allowing us to save the game, continue to the next section or view any new or old TIPS. Sometimes we'll also receive a message like the one we just saw, informing us that we've just unlocked one or more additional TIPS. Okay, that's nice, but what are those TIPS?

Contrary to what you may be expecting, they're not extra clues about the mystery we're supposed to be decyphering, at least not directly. They're short pieces of story which cover a variety of topics regarding the characters and the setting, giving us valuable background information about both. And yeah, sometimes they also give pieces of key information, but that's not too usual. It's still interesting to read them as soon as we get them, if only because that allows us to know Hinamizawa and its inhabitants a bit better.

These two first TIPS are also from Keiichi's perspective, although that doesn't happen always, and sometimes we'll find ourselves watching through the eyes of a secondary character, or someone completely unknown until that point, or in some place apparently unrelated to the story. Yeah, they love messing with your head, why do you ask?

Since most TIPS are very short and not too relevant to the main plot, I'll be only recording them in video to avoid breaking the image limit, which will already be tight enough for the longer chapters without adding any extras to them. Heck, I just hit 50 in this one... I'll make an exception if the TIP in question is particularly long, important, different, strange or introduces a new character or key data needed to understand the story better, and I'll give them the full double treatment. For the less important ones, though, you'll get the video and a short (a few sentences) summary.

Video ~ Do we have mixed classes?

Summary: Rena and Keiichi start comparing birth dates during class, and thus we can deduce the (approximate) ages of the three older members of our little group: Mion's a 3rd year high school student, meaning she's 17 but will turn 18 before the end of the year. Keiichi is also 17 (born in April, it's June right now) while Rena is still 16 (born in July).

We also learn that the village of Hinamizawa is part of a (somewhat) bigger town, called Okinomiya. The school building our characters are in is actually rented from the forest service, and that's the reason why there's only one class: there aren't enough classrooms in the building. There's another school in town, but it's too far away from most of the village, so half of the Hinamizawa kids attend this makeshift school near home, while the others brave a long bike ride each morning to go to Okinomiya's.

Video ~ Do we have freedom of clothing?

Summary: mostly random school silliness once again. The one little piece of information we can get from this is that yes, the school doesn't have a strict dress code, and everyone can wear whatever they want. Some students use Okinomiya's school uniform, but others (like Keiichi) wear casual clothes, while the girls in our main group buy their varied uniforms through one of Mion's relatives, who apparently owns a shop that buys and sells second hand school uniforms from all around Japan. I bet that shop is in some shady warehouse hidden deep inside Akihabara...
In the next update: a guided tour around Hinamizawa!
In progress: One Manager, Fifty Years, All the Cups: Neon plays Football Manager 2016 (Last update: Oct 8th 2017)

COMPLETE: Friends don't let friends kill each other - Let's Play Higurashi When They Cry! (Upd: 09/25 - Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 2 ~ Other extras and final goodbyes)
COMPLETE: The gold, the witch, and the corpses in the wardrobe - Let's Play Umineko: When They Cry! (Upd: 05/21 - Final extras (II) ~ Final extras!)
[+] Spoiler
On hiatus: Glimpses of an Unfamiliar World - A Touhoumon Blue Storylocke (Upd: 04/16 - Chapter 4-2)
On hiatus: Magical Monster Captor Chihiro - A Magical Girl Obsidian Storylocke (Upd: 06/25 - Chapter 2)

Unova League Champion
Unova League Champion
Joined: 8:52 PM - Sep 28, 2011

2:27 PM - Oct 29, 2012 #7

... Well. It's a visual novel, all right. :B

vn physics
(updated 13.10.18)

~ you're all invited to the official nuzlocke writing chat ~
~ adrian ramos drew all my avatars, but not on purpose ~

"It wath anger from the patht" - Today at 4:44 PM
clock (32-bit) - Today at 4:44 PM
Aozora - Today at 6:22 PM

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 6:36 AM - Jun 20, 2011

3:33 PM - Oct 29, 2012 #8

Oh sure, get us all comfortable before all the murders happen, game. Real nice of you.
But oh boy, what a cast of characters. I cannot wait to see how they all help investigations. And also how much trouble they'll get us all in.
And c'mon, if slow buildup were an issue, I wouldn't read basically any VNs or be doing a readthrough of one.
[+] More LB! Talk
It's a confirmed 26 episodes, and there's basically no way to get everything out of Little Busters! without going through every path. So that's 26 episodes for 6 paths and an epilogue, unless they pull an After Story and make the epilogue its own season. So no, it can't be too bad, but it's gonna miss out on quite a bit of the interactions that help develop characters and foreshadowing and whatnot. Especially since they've already officially started the first path and it's four episodes in.

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Joined: 11:24 PM - Feb 25, 2012

8:45 AM - Oct 30, 2012 #9

Welcome to Hinamizawa, where nothing is as it looks and even the smallest thing is foreshadow. You know, I noticed Mion and Keiichi are more of a tease than I remember them being...

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 2:17 PM - Apr 16, 2012

12:28 PM - Oct 30, 2012 #10

[+] Replies still go here
@Pillow: heh, yeah. And it will get better (?) in this update. Behold Keiichi's elastic mouth!

@Chorp: that's one of Higurashi's strong points: it builds a very cozy and relaxed atmosphere at the start, then rips it apart for absolutely devastating effect. Regarding LB!, 26 chapters is still too short, but better than 13 (looking at you, Angel Beats!). We'll see how it turns out.

@Sperance: best thing about rereading this? The huge amount of tiny bits of foreshadowing (intentional or not) that you can pick up right from the start once you know the whole deal about the story. Seriously, I'm cracking up every five minutes, and we've just started.
This will probably be my last daily update, since I'm all caught up with where I'm at in-game, and I also want to dedicate some time to my story run. Expect the next update in two-three days, and I hope to keep that same pace from then on.

Anyway, onto the next part, in which we know a bit more about the village, its inhabitants and its past. Today's main theme is: food! Rena's delicious food, to be precise.
[+] Onikakushi-hen, part 2 ~ Hinamizawa
Video version.
* * * * *
*birds chirping*

I relaxed too much this morning, and now I'm late.
Rena and Mion are supposed to be showing me around the Hinamizawa village today.

They are already there waiting for me.

First time we see the girls in casual clothing. As is mandatory for any visual novel ever, this and their school uniform are the only two sets of clothing they own. In other words: we're going to be seeing that white dress and that yellow t-shirt very frequently...

Mion: "Hmm... So that's your excuse for being late to an engagement with us?"
Rena: "Mii-chan... You just got here too..."
Mion: "He he he he...! Yeah, that show was pretty good last night, huh?"

She's the same as me.

Kettle, meet pot.

For some reason, Rena is carrying a huge bag. What the heck is it?
Mion tells me the answer.

Yes, she really packed lunch for us!

Mion: "She's been so excited since yesterday! You're responsible for all this!"
Keiichi: "Fine. I'm man enough to take responsibility."
Rena: "What...? What responsibility are you talking about...? What is it?"

Mion and I turn to Rena and stare at her huge bag.
It's hard to believe that lunch is the only thing that's packed in this bag.
But that's Rena...!

Keiichi: "...I bet it weighs about 2 kilograms..."
Mion: "She was breathing heavily when she lifted up that bag. I think it's at least 5 kilograms..."
Rena: "You're exaggerating... Keiichi-kun's a boy... So I thought he might eat a lot... Aha ha... let's just go now...! ...Urrrrr!"

The way she grunts is unusual. I can't believe that's a bag of lunch she's carrying.

Keiichi: "I take 5 kilograms too..."

After having a light conversation, we start taking a walk.
Walking in a beautiful summer day... I never thought I'd be so healthy when I lived in the city.

This place is so quiet.
There are no businessmen walking around for the overtime job on the weekend.
This silence makes me feel very relaxed.

Although it's a small village, there are some people out here.

Keiichi: "Why am I so famous here?"

So far we passed by three people, but all of them strangely knew my name.

Mion: "Aha ha, it's kind of sad, but there aren't many people in Hinamizawa. That's why everyone knows each other."
Keiichi: "So you're saying that... when they see someone they don't recognize, it automatically means that he's Maebara's son, the newcomer to the village?"
Mion: "Yup. You're right on that one."

That's how small the population is here, in Hinamizawa...

I need to be careful of what I do. I don't know who is watching me...
If someone saw me reading a porn magazine at the bookstore, I'd be the pervert of this village...!
Hinamizawa can be a scary village...!

And that's the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about things someone should not do in a small village. Right...

Mion: "Yup. People here have stronger relationships than in the cities."
Keiichi: "Let me ask you then. Who am I?"
Rena: "Aha ha ha. Maebara Keiichi-kun! He acts like he's mean, but he's actually a kind hearted boy."
Mion: "He moved here three weeks ago. He likes to take a nap. He just started wearing boxers, instead of briefs. Didn't you...?"
Keiichi: "That's enough!!"
Rena: "Boxers...?"
Keiichi: "Forget it!"

Don't ask questions you don't want answered, Keiichi... Also, Mion's information gathering network looks scarily competent.

I can't keep any secret in this village.
What a scary place this is.

Rena: "We're losing population in this village... People are excited when we have new members."

I think that's crazy, but I remain silent.
Have I ever greeted anyone that moved into my neighborhood in the city...?
Perhaps what they're saying is not a joke in this place.

We bump into someone else again. She also starts talking to us.

Neighbor: "Oh, hello there. You guys are always together."
Rena: "This is Fujishima-san. Hello!"
Neighbor: "Hi, Maebara-kun. You're such a lucky boy to have two pretty girls by your side. So how are you? Are you getting used to being around here?"

I nod at her, without making a phony typical response. She smiles at me.

Mion: "Good for you!"

When I look back up, Rena and Mion wink at me.

Rena: "By the way... Are you guys ready to eat lunch now? Are you...?"

Rena reminds us about what Mion and I have been trying to forget all day.
We look at each other.

Mion: "Hey Rena, how about we eat at that place with a nice view?"
Rena: "Wow... yes! That's a good idea!"

Rena nods joyfully at Mion's suggestion.
* * * * *
After climbing up the stone stairs, I see a traditional shrine just as I imagined. It's very old, but maintained well and very clean.

The Hakurei shr- oh wait, wrong doujin series...

If the fact that one of the four arcs is named after this Watanagashi festival doesn't tip you about its importance to the plot, nothing will. But yes, remember that name.

Rena: "Well, let's start eating lunch... Shall we...?"

Rena places colorful lunchboxes in front of us.
I admit they all look delicious. Rena is the one who made them. Of course, they're good.
But can I really finish all of this food...? The nice view is not going to help, Mion...

Hey, look who's here. Oh, wait, I think I start to understand Mion's plan...

It's Rika-chan and Satoko.
...Why are they here?
Mion smiles at me. I see! Her plan was to get more people...!
Thank you Mion! I'll be in charge from here on out!

Satoko: "We came out here because it was noisy...! .......What's going on here?"
Keiichi: "You know what's going on. We're about to eat lunch now. It's a buffet style. It's all made by Rena!"
Satoko: "Yeah, that's pretty obvious! Why are you trying to eat in someone else's backyard?"
Keiichi: "Hey, this is a public place. Don't say it like it's your property."
Rika: "Keiichi is right... This is everyone's backyard."
Keiichi: "Aww... Rika-chan, you're such a good girl...! Come sit with us! Let's eat together!"

I let her sit and turn my back to Satoko.

Satoko: "I'm not gonna let that happen! Rika!"
Rika: "Here's your chopsticks..."

Satoko and I start eating in a rage.

Mion: "Wow, Kei-chan is really good at getting her involved ...He's talented..."
Rena: "Here's the plate, Mii-chan and Rika-chan."

Rena hands the paper plates to everyone.

Rika: "We have to eat before they finish the food!"
Keiichi: "You're right! Let's start eating!"
Rena: "Please eat a lot. There's enough for everybody!"

Rena opens the canteen while speaking.

Satoko: "I'm not gonna let you have that beef patty!!"


Keiichi: "Ugh! Did you just elbow me? That's cheating, Satoko!"
Satoko: "Grabbing my collar is cheating too!"

Satoko seemed to have the advantage in the beginning with her violent method, but I start getting in front of her with my chopsticks skill.

Satoko: "Ohhh! That's the last meatball!"
Keiichi: "I defeat you, Houjou Satoko! Yummy!!"

Food battles are serious business in Hinamizawa.

Satoko and I both choke on the food and suffer around.
Rika-chan pats our heads in order to make us feel better.
Rena gets excited to see the whole scene, and starts blushing.
Mion laughs at all of us.

This is a typical lunchtime for us. If this moment could last forever, I'd do anything I have to do...
* * * * *
The intense battle is finally over. We start getting relaxed and start having conversations.
I sip on the tea and rest.

Satoko: "They were probably too busy eating, and didn't have time to make a compliment about the taste!"

That's only you, Satoko.

Rena: "But I'm glad to hear the simple words, "it's good". I'm glad I made all these for you guys."

She speaks and blushes.

Rika: "It's good..."

The next moment, Rika-chan makes a compliment. She stares at Rena with an innocent look.

Rena: "Ha..."
Keiichi: "Ha...?"

Rena makes a popping sound...... And steam comes out of the top of her head.

Rena: "Haoooo! Rika-chan, ...I want to take you home... I mean, thank you!"
Rika: "It was very good..."

Rena gets excited with a red face, and tightly holds Rika-chan close to her.

Rena's fusion reactor is out of control! Meltdown imminent! Evacuate the country!

The whole atmosphere changes after Rika-chan gets her piece of apple.

Keiichi: "What is it, Satoko? Why are you looking at us like that?"
Satoko: "Do you think you can say something nice to Rena-san in order to get a reward?"
Mion: "Since you're bringing that up, you think you can say something nice, huh?"
Satoko: "Ho ho ho... Just watch me."

Satoko stares at Mion and me again, and starts speaking in a different tone of voice.

Satoko: "Umm...! Your lunch was very... delicious, Rena-onee-chan...!"

Satoko smiles with an innocent look on her face.

What! the...? This is not a compliment! She's just trying to act adorable!

Satoko used Moe-moe Kyun~! It's super-effective!

Rena: "H... haoooo...!!"

It's too late. Rena is hugging Satoko and rubbing her cheek against hers.

Rena: "Adorable! Satoko-chan is so adorable... I wanna take her home... Hao!"

Stick! Satoko also gets the reward of a bunny shaped apple.
Satoko then looks at Mion and me with a challenging look, after eating her bunny.
It only took her 5 seconds to get Rena. She's playing dirty though! That was clearly cheating!

Satoko: "Why don't you say something nice to her to get the reward?"

Damn it!! She's so dirty!
She didn't even say anything special to her!

Satoko: "O ho ho ho! I'd love to see that! Let me see, you old woman!"

Mion's plan is crazy... But I have no choice in order to defeat Satoko.

I sip on the tea and stat out naturally, and perfectly.

Keiichi: "It's really good. Did you make all this food by yourself?"
Rena: "Oh, no. Most of it is actually frozen food..."
Keiichi: "So what did you make yourself, Rena?"
Rena: "What? Umm... Well. I'm too shy ...Do I have to tell you...? Do I...?"

She starts getting shy at the whole situation.

Keiichi: "I know what you made... It's this, isn't it?"
Rena: "What? What......? Hao......!"

She turns redder than ever, with a shocked face.

And you call Satoko a cheater. I think we've gone over the whole pot and kettle situation before...

Then I act like I'm shy, and take a moment.
Next one will be the final statement...

Keiichi: "Because it smelled like you..."


A moment of silence attacks us.
Rena can't even move with her red face...
Satoko also blushes with a gasp. Of course, I turn red too...

No. Shit. Sherlock.

The next moment...

Rena: "Here!!"

I see a container full of bunnies in front of me.

This is called "overdoing" it, Keiichi. Write it down, it'll be useful in the future.

Rena: "Here, here! Open your mouth, Keiichi-kun!" Have it all........!!"

She forces me on her lap and continues to shove apples inside of my mouth.
She screams out like crazy and continues to put... Apples... One next another............

Keiichi: "Ugh ga-a ga-ga-ga... Goo ga-ga guh... (You see Satoko? It's my victory!)
Mion: "Good job, Kei-chan! I told you, Satoko! We completely defeated you!"
Satoko: "This is foul play! I'm not going to cry!"

Satoko grinds her teeth with envy. We did it! I'm sure I got the victory on this one.

Rika's theme is the most HNNNNNG-inducing thing in this game. Seriously. Except for... well, Rika herself.

Rika-chan has stopped eating because what she was seeing in front of her eyes was too shocking to her.

Rika: "Poor bunnies... I want them to be saved..."


Blood starts shooting out from Rena's nose...

There's a trend so far of Keiichi always almost winning, only to have victory snatched away in the very last second. I wonder if he'll get better... Oh, who am I kidding, it's going to suck to be him for a long while yet, isn't it?

Rena: "I think these bunnies are happy now...! You can have all of them, okay Rika-chan?"

Rika-chan then takes Satoko's arm and raises it upward. Then she goes,

Rika: "We just won this game...!"
Mion: "What... Whaaaaaaat? We were so sure we won!"
Keiichi: "Ugh... hu-hu urrr... (I don't care anymore...)"

I had to suffer through this... basically for nothing...
* * * * *
*cicadas calling*

We played hard all day.
Once the sun starts going down, the day is over very quickly.

Mion: "Bye, Rena and Kei-chan! See you tomorrow!"
Keiichi: "Thanks for today, Mion. I had fun."
Rena: "See you tomorrow!"

Satoko, Rika-chan and Mion have left, and I walk back home with Rena.

No, Keiichi! She's gonna take you home!

*sound of rushing water*

We arrive at our destination after walking up the narrow path.
The place almost looks like a rough construction site...

There are piles of garbage dumped in the area.
I bet these are all dumped here illegally. I've read about something like this in the newspaper before.

She is already going into that adorable mode.
What kind of adorable things can she find in this junkyard?

Rena: "Oh... I see a new pile! I wonder what's out there... I wonder what's out there...!"

She starts jumping into the unstable piles of junk. What a country girl.

Keiichi: "Hey, wait for me...... Oh, shoot...!"

A city boy like me can't keep up with her at all...!

Rena: "You can stay there, Keiichi-kun! I'll be done quickly!"

She tells me to stay where I'm at.

Keiichi: "Don't fall! Be careful!"
Rena: "I'm fine! It's not a big deal!"

The cry of the higurashi makes the air feel cooler...
My exhaustion is causing me to get sleepy.
The next moment, I feel someone close to me, and I turn back with surprise.

Huh, new character? And he has a sprite, so he must be important!

He's a tanned guy with a muscular figure.
However, he looks kind of passive and strange.
He doesn't seem like a bad person...

???: "Wow! You surprised me...!"

He raises his voice as soon as I turn towards him.
He's the one who surprised me!

Keiichi: "I'm surprised too...!"
???: "I'm sorry! I didn't mean to scare you. Are you local? Are you from Hinamizawa?"

That tells me that he's not from around here.

I never asked for his name...

Keiichi: "Isn't it common courtesy to ask people before taking the picture?"
Tomitake: "Oh, I'm sorry! I usually take pictures of birds, and I've never tried to ask them! Perhaps I should, huh? Ha ha ha!"

So he's treating me like a bird...?

Tomitake: "You, standing in this sunset, was such a perfect picture... I'm sorry for not asking before taking your shot."

He's such a good speaker... I'm not that angry with him anymore for some reason.
Rena is still not coming back, but I don't really feel like having a conversation with this guy.
However, Tomitake-san keeps talking and talking.

Rena: "Keiichi-kun! I'm sorry for making you wait! I'm almost done here!"

Rena waves her hand from far distance.

Tomitake: "You're here with you friend? What is she doing way out there?"

That's my question, old guy.

No, that "you" in Tomitake's line is not a typo. Ugh, Mangagamer. Seriously, rereading this is making me wish I could get the original Japanese version and retranslate everything.

Keiichi: "I don't know. She might be looking for that body she chopped up before."

Tomitake-san freezes up for a moment. Oops, I didn't mean to mess around with him, like Rena and my friends always do...

Wait, what did you just-

-oh, dammit. Nice timing, Rena. >_>

Tomitake: "Well, I should get going. I'm sorry I scared you, Keiichi-kun."

The man smiles at me strangely, and disappears.
I didn't even have time to respond.

Rena: "Keiichi-kun, are you mad...? Are you...?"

It's not Rena's fault.
* * * * *

Rena's concept of "cute" is wide and varied. For those of you wondering, they're talking about this guy. Yeah, Coronel Sanders is "adorable". I don't even. :psyduck:

Keiichi: "It's just trash, right? I bet you can take it home if you want to."
Rena: "But it's buried under other junk. I can't get to it that easily... It's really dark out there too..."

She seems to be disappointed that she can't take her treasure back home.

Keiichi: "I'll help you then. I'll do it in return for that delicious lunch you made today!"
Rena: "Hao... Thank you..."

I see birds flying back to their nest. Night is almost here.

Rena: "Keiichi-kun is helping me! I can take Kenta-kun home with me... hao...!"

Rena seems to be excited.
I try not to disturb Rena's good mood, and ask one question.

Keiichi: "Hey Rena, did something happen here in the past?"
Rena: "I heard they were trying to construct a dam. I don't know much about it though... hao..."
Keiichi: "Do you know if anything happened during the construction? Like an accident?"
Rena: "I don't know."

This is one of those parts that are hard to translate into static images + text. The moment Rena says "I don't know", her expresion changes from flustered to neutral, the music stops and the silence is absolute. Then, when she says her next line, she's smiling once again, but the higurashi start singing hard in the background. This whole "playing with the sound to create atmosphere" thing is something Higurashi loves to do, so be sure to watch the videos if you want the full experience.

Rena: "I was living somewhere else until last year."
Keiichi: "What? You transferred here too? I thought you were..."
Rena: "That's why I don't know much about what happened before. I'm sorry..."

She doesn't know much, and she doesn't want to talk about it. I think that's what she's trying to tell me.

Dun-dun-duuuun... Things are finally getting a bit serious. Anyway, any moment now...

Here they are! And the second one looks promising...
[+] TIPS 3 and 4
Video ~ The Maebara Mansion

Summary: Looks like I wasn't the only one shocked by the size of Keiichi's house. The locals have already dubbed it "the Maebara Mansion" and the girls have fun speculating about his family being either very rich or very poor (because they spent all they had in buying such a huge abode).

It's neither, actually: they're quite average in terms of income, and the house's XXL size is due to Keiichi's dad's studio being in there. Since his works are quite big, they need lot of space to keep them and move them around. It's said that Keiichi and his family only use about a third of the whole house for living. Upon hearing that, the girls start making plans for visiting and exploring the mysterious unused rooms...

Video ~ The lynch murder at the dam construction site

Now, this is one of those important TIPS. Also, since it's a short newspaper article, I can write it here in full without needing to waste any images in it, yay! All the information contained within will be made available sooner or later in-story, but it's nice to know it early. Just keep in mind that Keiichi doesn't know about this. Not yet, at least...
* * * * *

Newspaper article, June XX, 54th year of Shouwa era. Evening Edition.

Remember we're in the 58th year of Shouwa (1983), so this comes from four years earlier (shakedown nineteen seventy-niiine~)

In the late evening of June XX, Okinomiya police in Shishibone city arrested...
...five construction workers, XXXX, XXX, XXXX, XXXXX and XXXX on suspicion of murder and body abandonment, and placed XXXXX on the wanted list as the primary suspect of this case.

According to the investigation, the suspects are believed to have unleashed a deadly assault on the construction manager at the site office for the Hinamizawa Dam project at around 9 PM.

On June XX at 8 AM, the police station received a phone call from the Shishibone city hospital that there was a man who hinted about murdering XXXX. When the police arrived at the man's house and asked him about his involvement in the crime, he subsequently admitted to committing the murder.

A part of the victim's body was found in the place he mentioned, and he was arrested on suspicion of murder and abandoning the body on the same day.

The other suspects were also arrested the next day. However, the main suspect is still on the run. The police have been searching for his whereabouts.

About the motive. "He blamed us for boozing up, and I lost my temper and killed him." However, the suspects have somewhat different statements, and the police are going to investigate the details further.
In the next update: games, punishments and other shenanigans! Oh, and some backstory too, I guess...
In progress: One Manager, Fifty Years, All the Cups: Neon plays Football Manager 2016 (Last update: Oct 8th 2017)

COMPLETE: Friends don't let friends kill each other - Let's Play Higurashi When They Cry! (Upd: 09/25 - Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 2 ~ Other extras and final goodbyes)
COMPLETE: The gold, the witch, and the corpses in the wardrobe - Let's Play Umineko: When They Cry! (Upd: 05/21 - Final extras (II) ~ Final extras!)
[+] Spoiler
On hiatus: Glimpses of an Unfamiliar World - A Touhoumon Blue Storylocke (Upd: 04/16 - Chapter 4-2)
On hiatus: Magical Monster Captor Chihiro - A Magical Girl Obsidian Storylocke (Upd: 06/25 - Chapter 2)

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 6:36 AM - Jun 20, 2011

5:08 PM - Oct 30, 2012 #11

Yay for casual wear and even more casual situations! And we get to see what I assume will be a common minigame, Teasing Rena Until She Overloads. I like the cast so far, they all seem diverse enough to keep my attention.
And also an old murder? How could that possibly relate in a game about murders?

The music gives me a kind of Sharin no Kuni vibe, though I guess that's just due to the setting more than anything.

Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Conqueror of the Saffron Gym
Joined: 11:24 PM - Feb 25, 2012

5:35 PM - Oct 30, 2012 #12

Aaaaaaand cut! Things start to get creepy. Unaware people, can start getting your brown pants ready

Unova League Champion
Unova League Champion
Joined: 8:52 PM - Sep 28, 2011

10:04 PM - Oct 30, 2012 #13

Ah, Tomitake! There we have our murderer - oh wait he's not a butler is he

(updated 13.10.18)

~ you're all invited to the official nuzlocke writing chat ~
~ adrian ramos drew all my avatars, but not on purpose ~

"It wath anger from the patht" - Today at 4:44 PM
clock (32-bit) - Today at 4:44 PM
Aozora - Today at 6:22 PM

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 2:17 PM - Apr 16, 2012

11:49 AM - Nov 01, 2012 #14

[+] You already know the drill...
@Chorp: funny thing is, according to what I've read in Wikipedia and such, the music Ryukishi07 used for the first half of Higurashi is actually a bunch of royalty-free tracks he got from the Internet, so they weren't even composed specifically for the game. This apparently led to copyright problems for Mangagamer when they got the license, and they had to replace them with their own music (that's been undone by the patches I'm using, so the music you hear is the original one). It works, but it isn't as good as in Kai, for which a composer called Dai actually made the music tailor-fit for the story. I'd link you to samples, but all the video images are chock-full of spoilers, not to mention the comments... :cybercrime:

@Sperance: ayup. Things will start spiraling downwards fast quite soon. But not yet, not yet...

@Pillow: maybe he works as a butler in winter and photographs birds for fun in summer!
You might have noticed that the thread title has a little addition in the form of a [Mature] tag. This update is probably not bad enough to deserve it (although the second TIP probably gets close to the line), but things will get messy in the future, so I thought I'd just slap it on and call it a day. Don't think anyone should be surprised to see it, given the kind of story we're talking about...

Anyway, here we go again. Today's main theme is: old maid!
[+] Onikakushi-hen, part 3 ~ All fun and games
Video version, part 1 and part 2
* * * * *

The next day, at school, Mion and Keiichi discuss Rena's tastes in "cute" things.

Mion: "Why don't you ask her yourself? I bet all she'll say is 'It's adorable!' though..."
Keiichi: "Does she go to that construction site often...?"
Rika: "I heard she goes there frequently..."
Keiichi: "A girl hanging out in the junkyard..."
Rika: "Well, Rena is having fun, so it's okay."
Keiichi: "What is that place anyway? Were they trying to build the dam over there?"

I've been curious about it ever since last night.

Mion: "Ha ha ha! Yeah, but it was cancelled few years ago!"
Rika: "We came together and fought for our village."

It's surprising to hear the word "Fought" from Rika-chan's mouth.

Sherlock Maebara solves another mystery... Regardless, this smells like important, especially when put side by side with Tomitake's little revelation...

That was so random.

Satoko: "What...... What the heck are you saying to an innocent schoolgirl like me?"

She's nowhere near innocent. Innocent girls don't talk like Satoko anyway. I get the same old reaction from her.
* * * * *

Oooh, we're being inducted!

Rena: "Rena has no objection!"
Satoko: "O ho ho ho! I wonder if this peasant can keep up with us!"
Rika: "I agree with Satoko..."

The three of them agree to have me in the club.

Mion: "Then it's unanimous! Congratulations, Maebara Keiichi-kun! You now have approval to try out for our club!"
Keiichi: "Hold on! You have to explain this to me! Who told you that I want to join the club of yours! I don't even know what this club is about!"
Mion: "Our club tries to adapt to an increasingly complicated society, through various conditions ...with prosperity, at times adversity...!"
Rena: "I'm not really good at it... so please don't tease me."
Satoko: "Don't be a wimp, Rena! It's a natural thing for the strong to eat the weak!"

What the heck are they talking about...? What kind of club is this anyway?

Now I'm scared...

...oh. I don't know if I should feel relieved or disappointed.

This club basically uses Mion's game collection.
They play different games that Mion owns, every day.
Depending on the day, the winner gets the reward, and the loser has to take punishment.

Mion: "Let me make this clear. This is not just a kiddy game! It's serious. Every game is so serious that it risks your life!"
Keiichi: "Can't we just relax and have fun...? Don't be too serious."
Mion: "Club rule number one! You play to win! You must never play lame!"
Satoko: "Club rule number two! In order to win, you must put all your effort into the game!"

Since Satoko is the one who is saying this, it sounds like "you can do anything to cheat"...

Rika: "I play my best too..."
Rena: "I'm not really good, but I'm doing my best too."

I understand their point now.
I guess it's unfair to be in the game, thinking it's not a serious thing.

Keiichi: "Okay, I'll do my best then...!"

I decide to try out their club...

In case anyone hasn't noticed yet, these girls are AWFULLY competitive at everything, as Keiichi is about to discover...

Mion is browsing around the locker placed behind the classroom.
...She keeps her game collection in school too? Well, I guess it's considered the property of the club...

Mion: "I think the difficult game would be unfair for him. Let's play something simple and easy. How about a card game...? ...Let's play old maid!"
Keiichi: "Fine! Bring it on!"
Mion: "Of course we need to have some kind of punishment! The loser is going to get scribbles on the face. Is it a deal?"
Rena: "What? What... I hope it's not a permanent marker! Is it...?"

A permanent marker... all over the face...?

Satoko: "I can't wait to compete!!"

Satoko gets excited.
She's not scared of the horrible punishment. She's pumped up.
I've got to do my best too...!

Keiichi: "Let me shuffle the cards... and give them to you guys!"

I bet you've all seen this game played sometime, or maybe even played it yourselves. Basically, the objective is to make pairs with the cards you're dealt. Once you get a pair, you discard it. There's one card that can't be paired, though, which is called "the maid". As mentioned, in the original version this role is played by the Joker, but here it will be a random (and unknown) card in each game. Each turn, one player takes one card at random from another player's hand, trying to fish for the cards he or she needs to make pairs. The first player to discard his or her whole hand wins, and the last loses.

Rena: "I'm going to take one card out now."

Rena pulls the card out and places it in the center of the table, upside down.
They all stare at that card.

Keiichi: "We'll know which card is the maid once we get close to the end. There's nothing we can do for now!"

But they all seem to be serious. They aren't relaxed like me at all.
They stare at their cards and the one on the table, and look around to see how the others are acting.
It's as if they can see through all the cards...

...No way...

Welp. Keiichi, you're screwed unless you start getting serious FAST.

Keiichi: "Bring it on! Don't think you girls can win just because you remember the marks on the cards!"

However, it's clear that I have a great disadvantage...
The whole game is different if they remember all the creases of the cards...!
This is not a simple old maid. ...In a mahjongg term... It's a gan-pai old maid!
It's okay though! I'll surprise them with a counterattack...!

Never played mahjongg, so no idea what Keiichi is talking about here, sorry. That said, be ready for quite a few mahjongg references in the (distant) future

But all that's awaiting me is an embarrassing string of losses...

I thought I was prepared... but I never thought they were this strong...!

Keiichi: "Demons... You guys are demons...! But I know you're not, Rena..."

They're so vicious... Even Rena and Rika-chan are playing foul...!

What kind of club is this? I bet you will survive anything if you can survive this club...
They'll probably survive any brutal survival games. I can imagine them hunting after people...

Mion: "We're going to track the record. Each of us gets negative points, according to what place you made. Whoever has the most negative points loses!"
Rika: "Keiichi was in last place, so he gets negative five now."

I get a negative five on my score board...!

Satoko: "I say a little peasant should just go home and wet his pillow with tears!"

As I shake in rage, someone reaches out to me. It's Rika-chan.

Rika: "You can do it... yeah."

I finally calm down as she cheers me up.
I can be calm when I'm in trouble. That's the enormous potential I have.

Just think, Maebara Keiichi.
...Take your time and observe the cards.

Finally getting serious? Okay, let's see what you can do, kid...

Just like Rena told me, some of the cards have obvious marks. I think I can memorize them.
I have to do everything I can do, in this situation.

Rena: "Wow, Keiichi-kun. You're getting better!"

I try to hide the scratches on the cards, with my hand or with other cards.

Rika: "The one with a crease on the corner is a 5. I'm out..."

I memorize everything that other players are saying. Every scrap of information is important.

Now it's my turn. Satoko spreads her cards in front of me.

That's better... Does Keiichi really have a chance at winning this?

Keiichi: "I see it! It's this one!!"

Bingo! 7 of spades...!
They are impressed by my move!

Satoko: "Are you serious? 7 is the trickiest card in this deck!"

I didn't remember the card. I just read the expression on her face!

They read the card by looking at the scratches. Some of those scratches are made by fingernails.
So I did it... I just made a new mark on there!!

Satoko: "You're saying that you made the other card look just like the two of diamonds? Wow, that was pretty clever for a guy like you!!"
Rika: "Way to go, Keiichi..."

Clap clap clap...

Rena: "Good for you, Keiichi-kun! You just won the game! You did!"

Looks like he did! High-five!

I'm so proud of defeating Mion.
Though, the total score is telling me that I am in last place and Mion is the first.

Oh snap. How many games did it take you to get here, Keiichi?

I try to annoy Mion and start smiling sarcastically.

Keiichi: "...Yeah, I know I'm still in last place, but I feel good because I know I defeated Mion at the end. Aha ha ha ha ha..."

I know this comment will make Mion go crazy...!

Keiichi: "What do you mean, one chance? Explain it to me."

She gets rid of one of the two cards she has, and takes the joker in her hand. Then she puts her hands behind her back and starts to shuffle.

Mangagamerrrrrrr *shakes fist*

Keiichi: "Did you just get rid of the joker behind your back?"
Mion: "If you lose, I'll show you the card in my other hand. Is that a deal?"

The other three girls are excited with this last gamble.

Keiichi: "Fine!! Let's go for it!!"

Mion shows me the two cards in her hands. I have to observe them closely...!
The one on the right has no obvious marks, and I have no idea what it is.

Rena: "Which one is it...? Be cautious, Keiichi-kun!"
Keiichi: "Of course I will! It's my last big chance!!"

The on on the left has a distinctive scratch, and it looks kind of familiar to me.

Satoko: "Oh, that card is...!"

I pay attention to Satoko's murmur. Mion clicks her tongue.
The scratch on the left card doesn't match with any card that I had memorized so far.
But based on Satoko's reaction, that card was definitely used in the precious game, which means it's definitely not the joker!

I bet that "precious" is actually a typo of "previous" that slipped past QA. If this translation even went through QA in the first place...

But is it too early for me to decide solely based on Satoko's reaction? Should I be more careful...? ...Oh!
I remember...! That card on the left is... I know for sure...! It's the 7 of clubs!

Rena: "Yeah... It's probably the 7 of clubs..."

I win! The left card is the 7 of clubs! That means the other card on the right is the joker...!

The moment I reach my hand to the card on the right, I stop my hand.

Keiichi: "Ha ha ha......he he he... I'm impressed, Mion."

They get confused as I stop reaching toward the card.

Satoko: "? What? What is he talking about? The one on the left is..."
Rika: "You can't tell him."
Mion: "Okay... How can you tell that the one on the right is not the joker?"

Everyone except me is confused.

Rika: "Keiichi, you have a good instinct..."
Rena: "What? What do you mean by that, Rika-chan...?"
Keiichi: "Well... The 7 of clubs... is the card I just got rid of, with Satoko's 7 of spades...!"

They look at the pile of cards on the table. They're all mixed up in the pile, so we can't really tell...

Keiichi: "In other words, Mion picked up one of the cards from this table... and piled it up on the card on the left!"
Rena: "I see! She's making the card on the left look like the 7 of clubs!"

Clever... Respect points for Mion rising. Provided Keiichi is right, of course.

I see Mion's face darken for the first time since we started playing the game.
Then, after rotating my body three and a half times, I finally point out.

Keiichi: "The joker is...... the one on the left!!!!"


Rika-chan puts her hand on my head, and congratulates me on my victory.

Rena: "What...? Rika-chan is..."

Rena and Satoko are looking at me with surprised faces.

Keiichi: "What is it, Rena? I didn't even cheat! I won using my own ability!"
Satoko: "Rika only pats people's heads to comfort them!"


What...? What does that mean...?
The next moment, Rena screams loudly.

Rena: "Keiichi-kun...! Can this be true...?"

Everyone was sure of my answer...
Mion picks up the card I chose.

Mion: "Be proud of this loss, Kei-chan."

Then she turns the card... That card tells us who the winner of this game is...
The card under the 7 of clubs was......the 2 of diamonds!
It was a double trap...! I should've just chosen the one on the right...!

Oh crap. Keiichi loses in the last second. AGAIN. Now raise your hands, who didn't see that coming? No one? Yeah, thought so.

Mion: "As the leader of this club I announce that... Maebara Keiichi, you are officially a member of this club...!"

As I collapse down on my knees, they award me with a round of applause.

I'm upset that I lost, but I'm not feeling that bad...

Rena: "When Mii-chan was setting the trap behind her, I was so excited!"
Satoko: "When he almost chose the card on the right and stopped, I thought yes! He's trapped!"
Rika: "We had such a good time, Keiichi...!"

Wait a minute.
They all knew about this trap from the beginning and pretended like they had no idea...?

Rika: "We were all in it, to make it exciting!"

............What the...

Keiichi: "You guys are all demons! You're all so evil!!"
Mion: "Well, it's time for the fun punishment...! Since today is your first day in this club, we'll be nice and gentle. I don't want you to be afraid of us, you know?"

The three girls hold my arms and body.

Mion: "I'm coming to you...!"

She takes off the cap, and points the marker at my face...!

Keiichi: "Stop!! No, no, noooooooooo...!!"

My scream echoes all over the room...
* * * * *
*a bell rings*

Rena left in a hurry, right after the club was over.
She's probably going to that junkyard to get the Kenta-kun doll out from the garbage.
I'm walking home alone with Mion now.

Keiichi: "Did something happen? At the dam construction site... in the past?"
Mion. "Yes! There was a big war! There were sit-ins and demonstrations!"

It's not exactly what I was hoping to hear, but I continue to listen.

And so should you, this is important.

Keiichi: "They were trying to submerge this area underwater, right? I would have fought too, if I were here."
Mion: "The government officials were so selfish! They were arrogant and bossy! When they found out they couldn't take care of things with their money, they started doing dirty things! They were foul!"

She raises her voice in rage, as if it's going on right now in front of her eyes.

Keiichi: "How did you guys win? It was the government you were going up against, wasn't it?"
Mion: "The leader of the village, and other people with power, got together and petitioned everyone they could. They also went to Tokyo, and negotiated with politicians there. In the end, the plan was eventually withdrawn... It was our victory! Aha ha ha ha!"
Keiichi: "Was there any violence going on? Like assault or... murder...?"
Mion: "No."

She answers clearly.

Short and to the point, huh.

Mion: "Well, see you later! You better not erase those scribbles until you get back home!"
Keiichi: "I know that!"

She stares at my face and tries not to crack up.
What kind of scribbles did she draw on my face...?

* * * * *

As soon as I get back home, I can tell that the whole house is filled with tension.
But that is nothing new in this house.
We get this once in a while, when my dad is stuck with his artwork.
He stomps around the house, with his arms crossed in front of his chest.

Mom whispers in my ear.

Mom: "Welcome back Keiichi. Your dad is stressed out, so leave him alone, okay?"
Keiichi: "Is he stuck again?"
Mom: "He's been way too busy lately. He needs time to relax."

We're eating off my dad's paintings, so if he's stuck, the Maebara family is in jeopardy.
(I'm impressed he can make enough money to feed us off his art. Is he a great artist or something?)

Mom: "Keiichi, why don't you go out and take a walk? You still have a while until dinner time."

My dad's bad mood only lasts for a while. Once an idea strikes him, he'll be happy and will start to hum.
I guess it's a good idea to go out for a while so I don't agitate him.

Keiichi: "Alright, I'll see you later."

Wandering aimlessly through a village you barely know a short while before nightfall. Sounds like a fantastic idea! By the way, Keiichi, I hope you got rid of those scribbles before leaving. :v:

*sound of higurashi's cry*

I wish I could go to the bookstore, but it takes an hour to get there on the bike.
It'll be dark by the time I get back here. Hinamizawa can be pretty creepy when it's dark.
I can't tell this to Mion or Satoko, though... I smile to myself.

I know! Rena might be still browsing her pile of treasure at the construction site.
She might be still struggling to get her Kenta-kun doll out from the junkyard.
It's a good idea for me to do something for her now, so I can get something in return.

Keiichi: "Maybe I can get her to do something in exchange during the next club meeting..."

I head toward the construction site with impure motives.

You know what they say about cats and curiosity, Keiichi?
* * * * *
I see Rena struggling in the pile of junk. The Kenta-kun doll is deeply buried under the junk.
There's no way she could get it out on her own.
I don't see Tomitake-san around here. I start walking down into the pile with caution.

Keiichi: "What's up Rena. I see you're working hard."

Keiichi: "I received an urgent report about an innocent victim! Where is this person?"
Rena: "What? What are you talking about? Huh...?"
Keiichi: "I heard the Kenta-kun doll is buried alive under the pile of junk...!"
Rena: "Oh! I got it now... You scared me Keiichi-kun."
Keiichi: "I was just kidding. I thought you were having a hard time alone, so I came here to help you."
Rena: "What...? You're here... all for me...? ...Hao..."

I feel better now. I have to see her blushing face at least once a day to stay healthy.

It's not like it's a difficult thing to achieve, anyway...

Keiichi: "I'm just messing around! You're making me feel shy too!"
Rena: "What do you mean...? That was a joke? How long have you been lying? How long?"

I ignore her question for now.

Keiichi: "Anyway, move. Where is this Kenta-kun doll?"
Rena: "Oh, here! Can you see him from this crack...?"
Keiichi: "Wow, he's really buried alive pretty bad...!"

The Kenta-kun doll is buried deeply under piles of wood and lumber.
According to her, it wasn't this bad yesterday.
I guess another truck came and dumped garbage illegally last night.

If she doesn't get this doll, I bet she'll do anything to steal the one in front of the store...
As her guardian, I cannot let her commit that kind of crime!

Self-appointed guardian, at that. But yeah, if Rena doesn't think twice about kidnapping Satoko or Rika, I doubt she'd hesitate before grabbing a chained doll from a not-KFC store...

Keiichi: "Move away. Let me get him."

She blushes again, and I rub her head.

The pile of junk is enormous. If I don't get him today, another truck might get here and dump more stuff.
I won't be able to get him if there's more junk on him.

Rena: "I'll help you too. Let me help."
Keiichi: "You'd better get out of my way! Let me get this!!"


I pull the lumber. Bend them. And throw them away...
I'm covered with dust and sweat as soon as I start.

*crash!* *crash!* *crash!*

I throw the stuff into the air, and it flies away in an arch. Pieces of wood, sticks and boards.
Crap!! I see more and more garbage no matter how much I throw away!
I see the doll right there!

Since I promised her that I would get him for her, I start feeling pressured.

* * * * *
Keiichi: "I've got to take a break...! This is harder than I thought...!"

I lay down by the grassy hill and stretch out my body.

Rena: "I'm sorry, sorry. You're so sweaty..."

Rena wipes my forehead with her towel. It feels good.

The cry of the higurashi is cooling down the air.

After she left, I wake up and walk toward what I found just minutes ago.
It's a pile of old magazines and newspapers.
If I still remember... I think I saw it around here...

There it is.
I see tabloid magazines piled up with a string. They are a few years old, and they're piled up by the issue date.

(That was a horrible incident. They're still missing an arm, right...?)

If what Tomitake-san was saying is true, it means there was a murder.
There is scary news all over the world nowadays. I hear about these horrible incidents everywhere.
People are also curious about those cases.
If that's the case, I should be able to find an article about it somewhere.

Looks like someone is about to discover something we already know thanks to a certain TIP...

I untie the string and open the old pages one by one.
Not here. Next. Not this one either. Next.
I don't even know when it happened. I don't know who the victim and the suspect were.
The only thing I know is that it happened right here.

I raise my face up once in a while to make sure Rena hasn't come back yet.

If Rena and Mion admitted that it happened, my curiosity wouldn't have grown this much.
Both Rena and Mion don't want to talk about this incident.
I'm trying to reveal what they are trying to hide from me for my own good...
Am I betraying them...?

"Lynching death at Hinamizawa Dam! Victim dismembered!"
I found it...!

The article is on the page in the back, but there are color pictures in the first part. The pages are damaged from the rain, and I can't open them.
Rena should be back here soon.
I give up and open the page with the pictures.

It's a picture of the scene where the investigators are carrying out the bag with the corpse.
The picture is faded and hard to see, but I can read the caption clearly.
"Disastrous nightmare in Hinamizawa dam! Lynching death!"
"The victim is the construction manager. His vicious attitude has been torturing the suspects..."
"Did they have enough of it? The manager is hacked into pieces..."

I knew it... It really happened...
Detailed information is written on the next page.
I turn the page without hesitation.
There, I see...

Insert scary sound effect here. Or watch the video. Yeah, better do that.

A hatchet, pickaxe and an axe? That's not lynching.
That's literally a cold blooded murder...
They killed one guy as a group...?
With a hatchet, a pickaxe and an axe...?


SUDDENLY. Dammit Rena, you have to stop doing that... wait, an axe?!

Rena: "You said you were going to need an axe or something. So I brought this for you...!"

Rena tries to explain and apologizes in a panic.

...oh. Right.

I guess I looked really scared to her.

Keiichi: "My bad... I guess I was scared too much..."
Rena: "No, it was my fault...! I'm sorry!"

It's almost sunset.
I'm exhausted now, so I should come back tomorrow.

Keiichi: "I don't think I can break the last piece of wood without that axe. I'll use them tomorrow. Okay?"
Rena: "Sure..."
Keiichi: "Why are you looking so sad? The Kenta-kun doll is going to be all yours by tomorrow!"
Rena: "You're right. Aha ha ha! I want to take him home so bad!"

We both know there's nothing further we should be talking about.
We drink the barley tea that Rena brought, and start heading home.

Well, that was awkward, but now Keiichi knows that there was a murder in Hinamizawa four years ago. Let's see what the TIPS offer this time...

[+] TIPS 5 and 6
This time both TIPS are short, in written form, and contain important information, so here they are, both in video and text form.

Video ~ The Hinamizawa dam project
* * * * *
October, 50th year of the Shouwa era.

The Basic Plan for Hinamizawa Power Development of Power Plant Project was announced by the Prime Minister's Office.
The scale of the "Hinamizawa Dam" project is so huge that the impacts on Hinamizawa village are critical.

The five villages that will be under the water of the Hinamizawa Dam are Hinamizawa, Takatsudo, Kiyoshitsu, Matsumoto, and Yagouchi.
Along with many facilities with public, cultural, productive values and religious symbols such as;
291 households, thereabouts of 1251 people, 1 elementary school, 1 junior high school, 1 post office,
1 agriculture cooperative main store, 1 timber basin of the forest service,
5 shrines, 2 temples, and 1 fish breeding facility are to be submerged for good.

It's too painful to think about the toil and tears that our ancestors have put into these villages over hundreds of years, now that they are about to be drowned in the depths of water.
In order to uprise against this injustice, the members of our affected community have stood up and formed the Onigafuchi Guardians.
We continue to demand a stop to the construction of the dam or to change the plan to move it to the tributary.

Even though we requested a peaceful and democratic meeting, the government and its puppet electric company's president rejected us.
They diabolically disregarded the villagers' democratic protest and the homeland of Hinamizawa.

However, we the villagers didn't flinch either. Rather, we had built a stronger bond and determination to protect our village.

Today, the resumption of the atrocious Hinamizawa Dam project has been frozen up for an indefinite term.
We, the villagers believe that this freeze-up was accomplished by the impact of our solidarity, yet, we also understand that this fearful project hasn't been completed (sic) dropped yet.

The Onigafuchi Guardians has already dissolved itself after completing its role. But the flames of our fostered solidification haven't burned out yet.
As long as the villagers keep the flames in their hearts, we'll never suffer to have our village submerged.

Written by Kimiyoshi Kiichirou, Chairman of the Onigafuchi Guardians

Extremely awkward prose aside, this document is clearly a summary of the scope of the Hinamizawa dam project, while also giving us an idea of how the villagers fought to avoid being submerged. Remember Kimiyoshi Kiichirou's name, by the way, and also the name of the group he chaired.

Video ~ Weekly featured article

This, on the other hand, probably comes from one of the magazines Keiichi found in the junkyard, although the words aren't exactly the same (there's no mention of any particular weapons being used here, for example). Keep in mind this is a tabloid magazine at best.
* * * * *

Nightmarish tragedy at Hinamizawa Dam!
Dismembering lynch murder!

On X/X, the blood-chilling mutilation murder that occurred at the Hinamizawa Dam construction site in Shishibone City, XX Prefecture shook the entire nation.
However, the police refuse to reveal any details about the murder... What exactly occurred at the Hinamizawa Dam...?

According to Mr. A, a participant in the investigation, "They probably didn't have an intention to kill him at first.
However, as soon as the victim tried to fend them off with a shovel, they all jumped on him, and then it escalated into a lynching."

After the bloody tragedy was over, all that was left was a horribly mangled, badly beaten corpse.

The victim taunted the assailants on a daily basis.
At first, they only wanted to get some payback...

"All of the assailants became terrified of what they had just done. Some of them began to entertain the idea of turning themselves in to the police."

However, the leader of the group, XX, brought up the idea of hiding the body.
As he persuaded the other members, many of them began to realize they didn't want to be caught.
There were six of them, and they were at a construction site, where a body could easily be hidden...
They were supposed to hide the body and leave the place...

"However, the leader of the group, XX, was afraid that the other five might turn themselves out of a crisis of conscience.
So, he came up with a horrifying way to make them keep their mouths shut."

XX came up with an evil plan to dismember the dead body into six pieces, so that each of them had to bear the responsibility of hiding their own.

"XX turned what was once a simple manslaughter into a most horrifying murder, and attempted to strengthen the unity by getting each of them deeply involved."

Getting each of them deeply involved.
...What's that supposed to mean? Mr. A opened his mouth reluctantly.

"XX ordered each member to cut apart the body with their own hands. They were reluctant at first, but nobody could defy him in the end."

In other words, "once you eat the poison, you might as well eat the plate"...?
This is how the horrifically bloody ceremony began.

"They cried and vomited while dismembering the body. One of them resisted vehemently, but couldn't stand against the ringleader
when he was told that it wouldn't make any difference if there was one more death."

However, XX's plan didn't even last for one night...
The member who refused to do his part until the very last moment went to the hospital to get treatment for the wounds he received during the battle.
He then collapsed in tears and confessed to the crime...

The remaining members were all arrested one by one, except for the leader, XX, who's still on the run.
The victim's right arm, which XX hid, has yet to be found as well.
Despite the daily searches conducted by the police, this evil man is still cut loose from the hands of the law.
What the hell are the police doing...?

"There's information that suggests XX said he was going to throw the victim's right arm into a swamp.
Actually, we found his car abandoned near the swamp, but the lead ended there."

XX had suspected his friends' betrayal.
It's possible that he caught on to the other members ratting out to the police, and escaped to somewhere other than the swamp.

"Of course, our investigation team has considered that possibility as well...
He had no transportation, so the reach of his escape must be very limited...
There have been some rumors in the police station that suggest he might have drowned in the swamp by accident when he disposed of the body..."

This swamp is supposedly bottomless, and it's feared by the villagers.
They call it Onigafuchi, and some say that the bottom of the swamp leads directly to hell.
XX is a cold-blooded devil from hell indeed.
He might have gone back to the hell from whence he came...

The Purple Gold Dragon brings good luck and victory!

It provides luck with money, luck with women, business development, career success, bids for power, and works as a charm against bad luck...
It'll help you not only to win gambling games like pachinko or horse races, but will also help you have good luck with your business and love life...
It it doesn't work, we'll pay your money back in full!

Purple Gold Dragon Bracelet DX (One payment)
27,800 yen
In the next update: P.E. and zombie tag!
In progress: One Manager, Fifty Years, All the Cups: Neon plays Football Manager 2016 (Last update: Oct 8th 2017)

COMPLETE: Friends don't let friends kill each other - Let's Play Higurashi When They Cry! (Upd: 09/25 - Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 2 ~ Other extras and final goodbyes)
COMPLETE: The gold, the witch, and the corpses in the wardrobe - Let's Play Umineko: When They Cry! (Upd: 05/21 - Final extras (II) ~ Final extras!)
[+] Spoiler
On hiatus: Glimpses of an Unfamiliar World - A Touhoumon Blue Storylocke (Upd: 04/16 - Chapter 4-2)
On hiatus: Magical Monster Captor Chihiro - A Magical Girl Obsidian Storylocke (Upd: 06/25 - Chapter 2)

Unova League Champion
Unova League Champion
Joined: 8:52 PM - Sep 28, 2011

1:49 PM - Nov 01, 2012 #15

oh god

suddenly it's not a visual novel any more D:
(updated 13.10.18)

~ you're all invited to the official nuzlocke writing chat ~
~ adrian ramos drew all my avatars, but not on purpose ~

"It wath anger from the patht" - Today at 4:44 PM
clock (32-bit) - Today at 4:44 PM
Aozora - Today at 6:22 PM

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 6:36 AM - Jun 20, 2011

4:19 PM - Nov 01, 2012 #16

Ganpai is a term used in mahjong for when someone marks tiles in order to gain an advantage. Exactly like that card game.

And yeah wow let's waste no time getting to the MURDERS~ and messing with the mood of the game so far.
Geez, with that whole dam fight and some of the other scenes so far, I keep getting this serious Sharin no Kuni feel from the game. Can't wait to see how far this'll go and how crazy it'll get.

Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 2:17 PM - Apr 16, 2012

11:42 PM - Nov 02, 2012 #17

[+] This spoiler box may or may not contain replies
@Pillow: heh, yeah, you need to read more VNs if a simple murder plus dismemberment makes you blink twice. :xd: A few of the Dead Ends in Fate/Stay Night and Tsukihime are way more over the top than almost anything Higurashi can produce, for example. Particularly if they involve land sharks or a certain little girl with white hair...

@Chorp: aaaargh, stop making me want to play Sharin no Kuni, my backlog's gigantic enough as it is! And about how far this can go, the only thing I can answer is "yes." Oh, and thanks for the ganpai explanation, makes more sense now.
The chapter title says it all, I think, so I won't waste my time building up the expectation. Today's main theme is: exercise!

...wait, what?
[+] Onikakushi-hen, part 4 ~ Zombies!
Video version.
* * * * *

Especially since the physical education class really sucks.
The only thing we do together as a class is a warm up exercise.
Even the teacher disappears after that. The students are just playing around as they please.

Oops. Remember when I told you that the girls only had two sets of clothing? Well, I forgot about the P.E. uniform. With the mandatory buruma, of course. Japan...

Rika: "Sorry for making you guys wait..."
Satoko: "Alright guys! What shall we do now?"
Keiichi: "Cool. All the members are here now, huh?"
Rena: "So leader, what kind of gym class ar we going to have today? What are we doing?"

Keiichi: "What the heck? You're reading too many comic books."


Mion: "Let's take lessons from the past! This game is old, yet it's the king of outside games. We're playing 'Tag' today!"

After making such a big speech, she suggests we play a kiddy game.

Satoko: "Sounds exciting!! The slowest guy, Keiichi-san is 'it'!"
Rika: "I'm going to do well in this too..."
Rena: "Same here! I'm not going to lose today!"
Keiichi: "Why are you guys so excited...?"
Mion: "Club rule number three! You must always be excited about the game we play!!"
Keiichi: "Wait a minute, is this a club activity?"

Uh-oh, Keiichi is overconfident once again. How many times will you have to lose painfully before you learn your lesson?

This is the rule.
Whoever doesn't get caught by the end of the class wins.
However, there's no taking turns for 'it'. The person who gets caught, is also going to be 'it'.
Therefore, the number of 'it's will increase as we play.
Whoever makes it to the end will be chased by all of us.

Rika-chan puts her hand on Rena.

Rika: "It's okay. I'll eat you gently before Keiichi does."
Satoko: "Rika, that's not comforting her at all."

Mion and I also nod deeply.

Quoting this out of context would earn little Rika a few funny looks, I'm sure of it...

Keiichi: "So who's going to be the first zombie? Rock, paper, scissors...?"
Mion: "Since this is part of a class, let's decide based on a quiz. I'm going to give you guys a question, so whoever doesn't know the answer is going to be the zombie!"

I have no idea what she's talking about.

Mion: "What is the number that comes after five?"

What? I'm confused by her sudden question.
Mion rephrases her question again.

Mion: "Just answer me! What comes after five!"
Keiichi: "Umm... it's six!!"
Mion: "Then what do you wear on your feet?"
Rena: "That's 'socks'!"
Mion: "The third letter from the back of the alphabet?"
Rika: "Is it 'X'...?"
Mion: "Then what's the other word for 'gender'?"
Satoko: "Of course, I know that one!! Se........."

Satoko tries to answer but closes her mouth.

Master Troll Mion strikes back! By the way, I wonder how this little sequence played in the original version...

Mion: "Then say it. It's 'that word'. Say 'that word'!"
Rena: "Hao... Satoko-chan is in trouble. ...She's so adorable..."
Keiichi: "Don't take her back home. It's a crime."

I think she would kidnap her if I don't warn her...
Mion urges Satoko to say that word.

Mion: "Come on, say it in a loud voice! Say 'that word' out loud!"
Satoko: "I know...! I know! ......Se..."
Rika: "She told you to say 'That word'."
Satoko: "What? ...Oh."

We are confused with Rika-chan's comment.
That's right. She was telling her to say "THAT WORD". ...She totally fooled us!
What would've I done if I was in Satoko's situation...?
I would've screamed the word she was trying to say...

Sonozaki Mion! What a scary girl!
She's lucky she's a girl. If she was a boy, it'd be nothing but sexual harassment...!

Old tricks never fail to work!

Most dangerous zombie ever.

Satoko: "So I have to count to one hundred first?"
Keiichi: "Wait, you might cheat. You can start chasing us if you answer my question."
Rena: "Wow, Keiichi-kun. Make it an easy one for her..."
Keiichi: "There's a 1/5 piece of cake, 1/6 piece of cake, and 1/7 piece of cake on the plate."
Satoko: "What? They're all different fractions!"

She gets in panic and starts writing down the numbers on the ground with a stick.

Apprentice Troll Keiichi isn't too far behind his master!

Everyone but Satoko started running away as soon as Mion shouted.

Rena: "Hee hee... Keiichi-kun. That wasn't even a question!"

If Satoko even takes the time to think about it, it's her loss.
If she eats it all, there will be zero cake left on the plate!

Everyone runs in different directions.
Since they know in detail about this school, they probably all know where the best places to run to are.
I'm already at a disadvantage.
In this case, I should follow someone who has the best survival skills. I think Mion would be the best person to follow.
Too bad I didn't think of it when the game started.

As I look back at Satoko, she is finally getting up and starting to hunt for us.
She's mad. He he he! How can she be tricked by a stupid question like that?

Stay calm, Maebara Keiichi... What would I do if I was 'it'?
Getting more people on my side, is the key to win.
That means it's best to target the slow ones first.
Which is me!

Wait, weren't you extremely confident on your athletic abilities five minutes ago? :psyduck:

Satoko: "Hey Tomita and Okamura! Did you see Keiichi-san somewhere?"

What the hell is that approach?
The zombie asks around other people to get her prey?

Tomita-kun and Okamura-kun point in my direction.
As I see her start running this way, I flee the place.

It's not easy to completely hide from a group of little kids.
I realize how much of a disadvantage I have...!
If the zombie is going to ask other kids about me, I have my plan too...!"

I gather a few girls who are playing with a ball.

Keiichi: "Wait a minute! I have a message for Sonozaki Mion too. Tell her that the teacher is calling her at the gate."

Hehehe, I'm such a genius...!
Satoko and Mion will bump into each other at the gate!

It'll be more difficult when the number of zombies increase, but it's okay. I bet Mion will find a way to get away from Satoko.
That's my whole point. I just want to buy some time...!
He he he, have fun, Mion and Satoko! I'll let you guys enjoy this game!!

Keiichi is starting to wise up about the right way to combat these girls. Subterfuge against subterfuge! That said, stop congratulating yourself, it will only accelerate your fall...

I start looking for a place to hide with satisfaction.
I only have a few minutes to spare.
Eventually, they'll find out about my plan, and I'll be going through hell after that...!

I know that my strategy comes with a huge risk.
Satoko will probably tell those girls to look for me in return.
That means there will be more zombies than there are actual players of this game!!
I think something bad is awaiting me... All the classmates will become zombies, and hunt me down!

Perhaps, my plan was a really bad idea...
I continue to look for a place to hide, thinking about the biohazard that will be coming for me soon.

Student A: "I don't see him here. How about there?"
Student B: "He's not here either. I wonder where Keiichi-san went. His dad is waiting for him at the gate."

Liars! It's exactly the same strategy I just used. Is it Mion...?
But I'm the one who came up with this trap first.
I'm just going to stay here and hide from them until the bell rings.

Student C: "Hey, do you know where Keiichi-san went? I heard his mom became sick!"
Student D: "I have a message for Maebara-san. His house is on fire, and his dad is waiting for him at the gate!"
Student E: "I heard that an airplance crashed into his house!"
Student F: "The police are here for investigation!"

What chaos...

Inb4 Keiichi is chased out of town by a mob of angry villagers.

Did you do this Mion!?

Calm down, Maebara Keiichi! Mion is just trying to agitate me! I have to stay cool! My classmates know that I'm not that kind of guy!
But... They're just a bunch of little kids. They might believe whatever Mion tells them.
They run out from the storage, laughing about me.

Wait for it...

Student X: "Did you hear? That transferred guy, Maebara-san is such a nasty guy! Aha ha ha!"

The price I have to pay is so high...

Rena: "I just got away from Mii-chan... Do you know where Satoko-chan is at...?"
Rika: "She's searching for us around where the earthenware pipes are located. This place will be safe for a while..."

I feel relief to hear that.
Rena sits down to catch her breath. Then Rika-chan walks toward her...
It's not strange for her to walk so silently like that... but... Could she be...?

Rena: "Wow! ...Rika-chan? What is it? What...?"
Rika: "Don't worry..."

She smirks at Rena with a scary expression.

It's the attack of the zombie lolis!

Rika-chan stretches her arms out like a zombie, and pins Rena against the wall...
Rena shakes with fear.
This is like a live horror movie...!
It's better than the average scary movies!

At that moment, Rena finds me and looks at me.

Rena: "Help me, Keiichi-kun!!"

Rika-chan turns around 180 degrees, like the girl from The Exorcist, and stares at me.

Wait for iiiiit...

Satoko: "What? You found Keiichi-san?"

I hear Satoko running toward me from afar.
Rena somehow gets away from Rika-chan, but now Rika-chan is targetting me.

Keiichi: "Stop you guys...! You guys are scaring me!!"
Satoko: "I wonder what your gut tastes like... Keichi-san...!"
Rika: "I want you to be like us, Keiichi..."
Keiichi: "Help! Someone help me!!"

I see Rena apologizing at me from afar.

She's bowing at me. She's saying that she's sorry. She's leaving me behind like that? Rena!!!

I jump off the roof with fear... but then I slip and fall.
Satoko and Rika get on top of me and tickle my body...

Keiichi: "Aha ha ha ha ha ha! Stop! Hey! Aaaaaaaaaah!!!"

Most adorable zombies ever. :3

Rika: "There, there... But you're our friend now."

I feel like I was bitten by a vampire and turned into one myself too.
It feels strange to be welcomed by the people who were my enemies not too long ago.

Keiichi: "This game is pretty deep...!"
Satoko: "We don't have time for that now! We need to catch Rena!"
Mion: "I see the principal walking down the hallway. The bell is ringing soon...!"

I need to whatever I can, in order to eat Rena alive.
I'm not just a zombie. I'm a vampire thirsty for her blood!


I use the same trick that put me into this situation, and use my classmates.
I gather up the students running around the field.

Keiichi: "You guys, listen! Rena is in trouble! You need to find her now!"
Student Y: "Is it more urgent than the airplane crashing into your house?"

I forgot about that story. Mion whistles and looks away.

Keiichi: "Yeah! It's nothing like an airplane! Guess what crashed into her house...? A space colony!!"
Student Z: "A space colony?"
Keiichi: "Yes! It's a disaster! Everything in a 100 mile radius is destroyed! But this is just the beginning of the tragedy! It's an all out war for independence raised by the Zion fleet!"

They are all surprised with my extreme made-up story.

Student S: "But... I thought not even the wave motion gun could take down the comet empire..."
Keiichi: "What you're talking about is the white comet. We couldn't take it down because we didn't know where to aim. But of course, Rena knows how to take it down!"
Student S: "Wow... Ryuugu-san is amazing..."

He nods and starts looking for Rena. I didn't know there was a smart boy here like that...

Keiichi surely knows how to convince people to work for him. I wonder if this will be of any real use to him in the future...

With everyone in the class searching for her, Rena is soon found.
She is surrounded by everyone at the gym storage.

Rena: "You guys are scaring me! Keiichi-kun...! I'm scared!"

I bet it is scary to be chased around by all these kids.
The students walk towards Rena, saying that she's the only one who could save the world.

Rena: "I don't know what you guys are talking about! I don't know how to control a robot!"
Keiichi: "Hey Rena! Thanks a lot for leaving me behind! Your time is up now...!"
Rena: "Keiichi-kun... I'm sorry for what happened. I had no choice...!"
Satoko: "Be quiet... so we can eat you up...!"
Rika: "We're all going to share you..."
Mion: "Rena... ready for your last prayer? Ha ha ha ha ha!"

Rena falls down on the mat and cries with fear. I continue to get closer toward her.
I blush as I imagine myself doing something extremely immoral to her.
Satoko and Rika-chan are posing with their hands in front of them. They're getting ready to tickle her.
Rena knows what is about to happen, and makes her body rigid.

Keep it PG-13, guys, or I'll be in trouble!

Rena: "Okay... If it's you, Keiichi-kun..."

My heart races as I see her determined face.

Rena: "I believe you won't do anything horrible to me..."

Ugh... My body won't move... Is she using an anti-zombie holy spell?
My conscience knocks out the beast inside of me in a matter of seconds.

It's called "moe", Keiichi, the most fearful weapon ever devised by humanity.

*a bell rings*

And of course she was faking it all to gain time. If we needed any further proof that Rena is not as cute and innocent as she seems, there it is. Incidentally, Keiichi lost. Again.

Keiichi: "Huh... the zombies vanished in the nick of time, huh? How typical was that..."
Satoko: "What are you saying? It's all because of you! You were too slow!"
Rika: "I'm going to get you for this one..."

Satoko and Rika-chan grab me and start tickling me again.

Keiichi: "Aaaaaah please forgive me! Aaaaaaaaaaaah!!"

...wait, WHAT.

Rena: "What...? You're not a zombie, Mii-chan...?"
Mion: "I was just acting like one. I was pretty good, huh?"
Keiichi: "Whaaaaaat? Why you, Mion!!"
Mion: "Yeah, whatever. We have to get dressed now. Don't be late for the next class!"
Keiichi: "Let me go, Satoko, Rika-chan! Aaaaaaaah...!"

I once again realize how scary my club is. I make a pledge to myself, that someday, I will take Mion down!

Good luck with that, unlucky boy...
* * * * *
*a bell rings*

I change my clothes as soon as I get back home.
I promised Rena that I would help her get the Kenta-kun doll.

Keiichi: "Do we have work gloves, mom? I need a towel, too."
Mom: "I think we have them in the storage up front. You can get the towel from the bathroom."

I'm all ready now. My mom looks at me with a suspicious expression.

Mom: "Hey Keiichi. Where are you going? Why are you all dressed up...?"

What if more trucks come and dump stuff on top of that Kenta-kun doll? Rena would definitely try to steal the doll from the fried chicken place in the city.

Real smooth, Keiichi. But it worked, so hey.

As I head toward the construction site through the forest, I bump into someone.

Oh, hi Tomitake, fancy meeting you here. Any new information about old murders you might want to share with us?

Tomitake: "Hello there. Keiichi-kun... was it?"
Keiichi. "Hello sir."

I try not to think about our last meeting, and greet him.

Tomitake: "By the way... You know that girl, right...?"

According to how he's acting... I think he's talking about Rena.

Tomitake: "What is going on? She was walking down the street with an axe in her hand! She was smiling strangely too!"

Yup, that's definitely Rena.
She's probably excited because she can take her doll home today.

Tomitake: "I felt threatened so I hid from her... but do you think we should call the police?"

It is strange to see a young girl walking around with an axe.
There's nothing odd about Tomitake-san's reaction.

God damn it, Keiichi.

I think it's difficult for a normal person to understand Rena... I need to avoid getting into details with him.

Keiichi: "If you get killed in this village, I'm sure that the suspect will be her. You should stay out of this..."

I give him a mean smile, and start heading toward the construction site.
As I walk away from him, Tomitake-san stops me.

This guy's a goldmine full of vaguely disturbing sentences, isn't him?

I was just kidding around... But he speaks before I reply to him.

Tomitake: "Ha ha ha! Thank you for the warning!"

He turns around and starts walking away.
I wasn't thinking of him as a foreigner... I didn't mean it that way...
I thought I was just joking around, but I feel very guilty now...
* * * * *

Keiichi: "You should've brought the axe in a bag or something. You're scaring me!"
Rena: "I didn't have any good bags for this..."

Oh well, what can I do?
People in this village already know how strange Rena is, anyway.
No one would be frightened to see her wandering around with an axe like this...

Keiichi: "Whatever! I'm going to do this today! I should be able to get him out if I break the last piece of lumber. I'm ready. You just watch me!"
Rena: "Okay!"

I take the axe from her, and walk down to the junk.

*swoosh* *smack!*

I hear a sharp echoing around here. I feel like a lumberjack.

Rena: "How is it...? Is it working? You don't have to force yourself if it's too hard..."
Keiichi: "It's all done if I can break this one piece! I have enough energy today! I can do this!!"

However, it's more difficult than I expected.
This is my first time using the axe...
When I went to camp as a child, I wanted to try chopping wood, but didn't get a chance because I lost in rock paper scissors.
I get tired very quickly, and decide to take a break already.


Keiichi: "By the way... you transferred here too, right? Where were you living before this place?"

I ask her while sipping my tea.
Before she told me, I always thought she was born and raised here.

Rena: "Huh? Oh, in Kantou. It was rural, but not as much as here."
Keiichi: "Why did you move to Hinamizawa? This place is really rural, you know?"
Rena: "How about you, Keiichi-kun? Does it have something to do with your father's job?"
Keiichi: "Yeah. My dad wanted to have an art studio here. He always wanted to work in the deep mountains like here."
Rena: "Art studio...? Your father is an artist?"
Keiichi: "He only paints landscapes. He has about two exhibitions a year... as far as I know."

He used to have his exhibition in some expo center before, but now he has it in Makuhari's trade fair.
His goal is to participate in an international exhibition.

Rena: "You had to transfer in the middle of the school year... Wasn't it difficult for you?"
Keiichi: "Not really. Besides, I was bored with the big city..."

I was the one who started asking her questions, but now she's in charge.
As I smile back at her, I pick up the axe to get back to work.

Did you notice how swiftly Rena avoided answering Keiichi's question? Nicely done, girl.
* * * * *
*sound of higurashi's cry*

The sun starts to set, and the air is getting colder.
The higurashi are crying, telling me to go home for today.
I'm almost there. I want to finish this today!
I was talking with Rena casually in the beginning, but I don't have any time for that now.

*smack!* *smack!* *smack!*

Keiichi: "Ugh! Why you! Damn it!"

I swing the axe as I've been doing all afternoon. I hit it. Then the wood chips fly around.

Morbid thoughts...

The last swing breaks the piece of wood completely.
However, the force not only breaks the wood, but also the doll's shoulder.
I hear a bad noise and his arm breaks off.

Then it rolls down to my feet.

Keiichi: "Oh..."
Rena: "What is it? Did you get hurt?"
Keiichi: "I'm sorry... I just broke his arm..."
Rena: "Oh! I thought you got hurt!"

I guess she can tell how sorry I am. She smiles at me without changing her expression.

Rena: "I can fix him with duct tape, and put a jacket on him. It's not a big deal."
Keiichi: "Okay... Let's pull him out then! Can you hold that part?"
Rena: "Sure!"

Both Rena and Mion know that it was a disturbing incident.
That's why they wanted to keep it a secret from me.
And I'm the one who was too curious about it.
But now, I'm so frightened.

Keiichi: "You're such a loser, Maebara Keiichi! Alright Rena! Let's pull this guy out! Ready?"
Rena: "Yes...! We did it! We did it, Keiichi-kun! Hurray!"

It's the moment of celebration! Two days of hard work has now paid off.
His life was almost over in this junk yard, but now he's back to life!
What a lucky Kenta-kun. His new master is such a nice girl.

Keiichi: "Let's take this guy to your place. We'd better go before it gets too dark."
Rena: "You're right! Thank you so much, Keiichi-kun! I'll never forget about this!"
Keiichi: "I'll think about what I want in exchange..."
Rena: "Wow... what do you want in exchange? What is it...?"

I smile with a mean face and stare at her without saying anything.

We're now trying to take this doll to her house.
We wrap him up with a blanket and hold his body together.

Not a suspicious image at all, nope, don't worry.

"...Are you trying to warn me?"
I think of what Tomitake-san asked me with such a serious face...

Stop ending every section in an unnerving way, game. Anyway, this chapter was lots of fun, but offered little in the way of insight about that four-year-old murder. I'm sure the anime veterans among us enjoyed a few lines scattered throughout this, though. :v: Now, let's see what's that about Rena's name...

[+] TIP 7
Video ~ What kind of name is Rena?

Since it's only one TIP this time and I have some spare space for images, I'll give you both versions despite being relatively irrelevant to the plot as a whole right now. Emphasis on "right now".
* * * * *

And we start with a quick lesson on what "too much information" means! Dammit Mion...

Keiichi: "...Satoko, do you know where Rena is?"
Satoko: "Rena? I just met her in the hallway earlier. Rena has class duty today, so she has to water the plants."
Mion: "Oh, Rena has class duty today, huh? She must be very busy today."

...Rena, Rena, Rena.
...All of a sudden, I have a question after repeating her name, Rena.
It's rude to say something like this about her name... but her name is so weird. It sounds like a strange foreign name.

Most names in Japanese are written in kanji. Nowadays it's somewhat frequent to write them in katakana or hiragana, but back in the eighties this was probably not as extended as today. I guess Rena sounds strange to Keiichi because there aren't many kanji combinations that could sound like that and make sense for a name. In fact, I don't think I know a single kanji that can be read as "re", and a quick online search only gave me two, and only one of those is common.

Figures... Keiichi's last thought about the writing probably means that Rena is written just like that in katakana (レナ).

Keiichi: "I wonder what her real name is. ...I'll ask her when she gets back!"

Satoko and Rika-chan look at each other.

Rika: "...You don't have to ask her. We can tell you."
Satoko: "Her name in kanji is spelled with Rei as in gratitude and Na as in the Nara prefecture!"
Keiichi: "I see. ...Hummm. So her written name is Reina but pronounced as Rena, right? It's rare to pronounce it that way, isn't it?"
Rika: "...No, you're wrong. Reina is the right way to pronounce it."
Satoko: "Rena told us. She told us she wanted to be called Rena. That's why we call her Rena."

Keiichi: "I'm just wondering, if I applied for my own nickname, would you guys call me by it from today?"
Mion: "Only if it's a funny one. What do you want to be called?"
Keiichi: "Echigo-ya."
* * * * *
After a while, Rena comes back to the classroom.
At the door, an underclassmas is telling her that someone was looking for her.

Rena: "What? What? Was someone looking for me? Looking for me?"

Mion and I look at her and grin.

...yes, apparently Echigo-ya is a character for some historical drama that I don't know a thing about. Joke lost in translation, I guess.

Keiichi: "You, Ryuugu Rena! I've waited 100 years for this opportunity. Are you ready?!!"
Rena: "Wow! Wow! Suke-san, Kaku-san, let them have it!!"
Satoko: "Aye-aye, sir!!!"
Rika: "...I want you to put your payment into my account at the Swiss National Bank."

There's nothing else I can do now! A big fight between the five of us is about to break out...!!!

*smack!* *smack!*

As the pillbox is shown, Rena unleashes her deadly punch.
In the end, the evil Mion and I fall...

Keiichi: "...I'd like to have Rena go on a journey of social reform. ...What about to Nagatachou??"
Mion: "...I don't think so. She'll steal something adorable there for sure."

*a bell rings*

The school bell rings to tell us that break time is over.

...One more class. Well, well. ...I can do this!
In the next update: cards, swimsuits and cat ears, oh my!
In progress: One Manager, Fifty Years, All the Cups: Neon plays Football Manager 2016 (Last update: Oct 8th 2017)

COMPLETE: Friends don't let friends kill each other - Let's Play Higurashi When They Cry! (Upd: 09/25 - Matsuribayashi-hen, Extra Chapter 2 ~ Other extras and final goodbyes)
COMPLETE: The gold, the witch, and the corpses in the wardrobe - Let's Play Umineko: When They Cry! (Upd: 05/21 - Final extras (II) ~ Final extras!)
[+] Spoiler
On hiatus: Glimpses of an Unfamiliar World - A Touhoumon Blue Storylocke (Upd: 04/16 - Chapter 4-2)
On hiatus: Magical Monster Captor Chihiro - A Magical Girl Obsidian Storylocke (Upd: 06/25 - Chapter 2)

Unova League Champion
Unova League Champion
Joined: 8:52 PM - Sep 28, 2011

12:41 AM - Nov 03, 2012 #18

wrote:This guy's a goldmine full of vaguely disturbing sentences, isn't him?
I think the translators at Mangagamer are getting to you. This is the (incorrect) object form, not the (correct) subject form. :v
(updated 13.10.18)

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Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Conqueror of the Azalea Gym
Joined: 6:36 AM - Jun 20, 2011

12:57 AM - Nov 03, 2012 #19

Most intense game of tag ever. Double agents, triple agents, death by moe, wow. I wish all games of tag were this awesome.
And cool, photo man shows up again to say ominous things while we dig Colonel Sanders out of a dump site! And then Rena can kiss it or whatever. Also, I just realized that Rena's portrait is moved up so that she looks the same height as Mion. In actuality, she's about halfway between Mion and Satoko.

"Echigo-ya" literally means "a shop in Echigo", where Echigo was an old province in north-central Japan. It's also the name of a large chain of stores in Japan. In the context the game uses though, Echigo-ya is thought to be a synonym for a dishonest merchant as a villain of Japanese period dramas.

Also, no, you must feel the pain of every VN reader and deal with wanting to read more VNs than you are capable of and having a gigantic backlog forever.

Mightyena Queen
Conqueror of the Mahogany Gym
Conqueror of the Mahogany Gym
Joined: 12:39 PM - Sep 10, 2011

2:54 AM - Nov 03, 2012 #20

Granted in Japanese language, they don't have different types of words like "drink, drank, drunk, drinking" rather they stick with one word and just add past additions to the same word
Some of the words look like they were lost in translation though...
But I still like this game ^w^
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