I thought it was important to inform our customers about the upcoming release of Higurashi When They Cry.
Primarily due to complications in the copyright, the following modifications are being made.
– Replacement of BGM in some scenes
– Removal of the Music Room
– Removal of the Mini Game
– Removal of the Staff Room
Now I’m sure that many people might be upset for not getting the exact same experience as the Japanese version, especially in the area of music which affects gameplay. There was some no copyright music with this version as well. In order to explain why, we have to look at where the original game comes from. This title was released as a doujin game and the creator acquired BGMs from different artists. Neither 07th Expansion nor MangaGamer.com have the full rights to them, which is necessary in a situation like this where our version is considered a “port”.
To have you look at it from another angle, there might be some people who realized that there are BGM differences in the demo version of Higurashi and the commercial version, even in the original doujin edition. Of course the console versions and the anime all have different tracks as well. However, as far as I know, the famous songs which make Higurashi what it is, such as “Thanks”, “You”, and “Confession”, do not appear until the latter chapters so they aren’t affected.
Update by Kouryuu9:
From what I’ve heard, the issues are as follows:
Music Room-Because a few BGMs/SEs were replaced, the original license holder requested that we remove this feature as part of our adaptation of Higurashi.
Minigame-This was removed because of technical issues as well as copyright issues with some characters from other companies who have a cameo appearance in the minigame. In the original game they were used without permission, and we have not received permission to use them either, so the minigame was removed.
Staff Room-What many of you are thinking of is what’s called the “Otsukaresama-kai” in the DS and other versions. This is the scene where the characters gather and discuss the events of the game and their own theories and hypothesis about the culprit or culprits. These will be included as far as I know, and I believe Evospace said as much earlier. The Staff Room section is similar to a diary for Ryukishi, and contains various topics relating to games, products, and other material during the time he worked on Higurashi. Since we have no permission for any of the games or products he discussed, this section was removed as well.
We sincerely apologize for these differences between our version and the original, however the actual story and elements important to the story still remain just as they were in the originals. As a doujin game, Ryukishi was able to use many songs, characters, and topics without permission for these features, but as an official release we need permission from the copyright holders to use them. Since we couldn’t obtain all the licenses for all of the characters and products featured in these sections, they were unfortunately removed. If we ever have any new updates about these features, I assure you we will make the information available as soon as possible.
Again, while these features have unfortunately been removed, aside from the few BGMs which were replaced, the original story and other elements important to the story have not been removed or altered.