Kara no Shoujo Changes

While the folks at Gungnir/Innocent Grey have been very receptive and cooperative during the entire process, even voicing their hopes to be able to release more of their catalog to a western audience, there were several unavoidable changes that had to be made as a result of technical issues and pre-existing license agreements which we will discuss today.

The first major change is actually one least likely to affect you, the customers. The specific engine originally used was not one compatible with English Text. As a result, we at MangaGamer have had to hire a team to port the game to new engine which is not only capable of handling English text, but also capable of accurately reproducing the Notebook System which makes Kara no Shoujo so unique. Because the Notepad is accessible at any given point of the game, automatically updated with any new clues and information obtained, as well as playing a key function during the deduction phases of the game, it was necessary to port Kara no Shoujo to a different engine which has not been used in any of our other games thus far.

The important part, however, is that in doing so, we have been able to accurately preserve the game-play that makes this “psycho mystery” so exciting, and the game now works in English. We have had many members of the original fan-translation group serve as testers on this game to ensure that the experience in our English release remains the same.The second major change, as many of you who viewed our catalog page have probably already noticed, is that we were forced to release the game without the original Japanese voices. Because of the unique way in which the extensive voice cast for this game was chosen, the rights to the voices remained with the voice acting agency, and not Innocent Grey. While both of us did our best to negotiate for use of the voices, the agency refused to accept any of the alternative options we proposed, and demanded an outlandish fee several times larger than the entire cost of localizing this product otherwise.Both those of us at MangaGamer and Innocent Grey are very sorry, and apologize that we could not bring the original Japanese voices to you. While some may argue that it would have better not to localize this game at all in light of this, we felt differently. Not only is Kara no Shoujo an excellent work on its own, but it also serves as an important link to the new game which Innocent Grey is currently developing, and since they would like to see that brought over as well, neither of us wanted to see the West denied such great games due to one agency. We hope that you will share our opinion as well, and continue to look forward to this outstanding game.“Reader, imagine, if you can, how I could have kept from weeping when I saw, up close, our human likeness so contorted that tears from their eyes ran down their backs—“~Dante’s Inferno

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  1. So, technically, from our point of view, only the voices? A little sad that we wouldn’t be able to (legally) experience 100% of the game, but hey, this kind of thing is out of your control. Still, some kudos are in order for MangaGamer, I mean porting an entire game over to a new game engine must not be a easy feat. It really shows the dedication you have towards giving us this game, so much thanks are in order. Thank you MangaGamer!

  2. these voicing deals are ridiculous and detrimental to the visual novel industry. I’ll be supporting MangaGamer regardless (although I can’t buy in Japan).

  3. Pardon my language but, those greedy bastards. This kind of thing happens too often. Still, this won’t stop me from buying the game. Thank you Mangagamer for your hard work. 🙂

  4. “Not only is Kara no Shoujo an excellent work on its own, but it also serves as an important link to the new game which Innocent Grey is currently developing, and since they would like to see that brought over as well”

    Above is your reason to buy it and stop bitching right there naysayers.

  5. Hmmm, I wonder. If the entire game was ported to a new engine than that might be a rather difficult proposition.

  6. They must have mistaken you with one of the big Japanese publishers that release games worldwide. If nothing could be done about it, it’s a shame, but it’s not like you didn’t try. So good luck with this release.

    • Unlikely they would make such a mistake. It’s just straight up greed on the voice acting agency’s end. Or maybe you’re right and i’m just too cynical. Stupid that they don’t just make a reasonable deal, seeing as now they don’t get a single cent with Kara no Shoujo getting released anyway. And with a high chance of getting an unofficial patch.

      • That was what I meant by mistaking them with big publishers. They were making a deal as if it was a title that would sell hundreds of thousands of units when that doesn’t even happen on Japan.

  7. Wow, ‘deduction phase’? Seems like this isn’t just your average visual novel then.. I might be interested in finding out more/buying it when it comes out 😛

    • Yup. you have to piece the clues together yourself. If you can’t; if you lack the evidence needed to prove it; if you reach the wrong conclusions; then another girl will die.

  8. “Not only is Kara no Shoujo an excellent work on its own, but it also serves as an important link to the new game which Innocent Grey is currently developing, and since they would like to see that brought over as well”

    So we if this sells well we might get Kara no Shoujo 2? Oh god, I’m definitely going to find some way to buy this.

  9. Any chance you’d release Cartagra?

  10. Should we expect a Kara no Shoujo 2?

    • Innocent Grey is currently devoloping Kara no Shoujo 2. If the original sells well I don’t see why we wouldn’t get the sequel.

  11. Ah, the changes aren’t so bad after all. Here I thought stuff might be cut left and right, but it’s just the voices.
    I know, the voices aren’t a small thing, but if you were expecting a typhoon, then you’re happy with just some rain.
    And really, if most people are to be believed, then this title stands really well on its own, without the voices. ^^

    Anyway, I’ve been convinced by a certain someone to pick this up anyway. Deduction and different endings/outcomes depending on those deductions, that sounds like my kind of thing.
    Gore isn’t really my thing, but I heard that there wasn’t unreasonable blood-spill or anything. Just brutally realistic gore.

  12. so sucks there’s no japanese voice. The only reason I play this because Aji Sanma plays so good in here. I better plays the original japanese ones rather than yours.

    • Have fun paying 80 euros plus import costs for a game I hope you can read.

      I’ll be paying 25 euros for a great visual novel in English. ^^

      • i did end the game long before this, basically i just wanted to re-run for alternative way of experiencing the game.

        Seeing touko didn’t have voice is hurt me so bad, dude. she’s the only reason why i bought-the legendary artbook that gone from sight-ruri no yume for 12800 yen.

  13. Has this particular voice acting agency been involved in any of Innocent Grey’s other games?

    By the way, really hope you’ll be releasing Cartagra soon! I’m already dying to play KnS, but have found out that it spoils a twist in Cartagra.

  14. Let’s be honest here, everyone knows that once this game is released, some Anon will make a voice patch for it. The entire loss of voices is a non-issue, that the banal are just using for an excuse to soapbox and get a courtesy wank for their e-peen.

    If anything, this is an opportunity to show the recording company that they can either make some money by offering a reasonable price or sit on their high-horse and make nothing.

    • i don’t know and i don’t care :/

      already lost hope seeing this happen twice, dude D:

      • Honestly, as gaudy said, if you do care about the voices so much, you know there is going to be a voice patch.

        Don’t brush it off with an “I don’t know and I don’t care” just so you can unjustifiably complain about a non-issue.

      • Hope for what?

        If you’re going to complain at least do it clearly…

        • hope for greater good, dude. Download things twice for the game and the voice is too much hassle.

          not to mention when will the patch will be available D:

          • Hitting the download button twice is to much of ahassle. And here I thought I was spoiled…

            And the patch will be available approximatively 3 – 7 days after the release if previous VN “fixes” are anything to go by. Not exactly a long wait, especially since you just want a re-run.

    • erm…I think personally that the voice patch is not going to happen due to kara no shoujo being moved to another engine instead of the original..This may prove to be a problem for the anons who are making the unofficial voice patch.

  15. Decided that I’ll be buying it after brooding over it for sometime.

    I do believe MG deserves praise for even going so far as to develop a new system so the visual novel could be brought over to the west.

    As for the no voice problem, oh well what are the other options? The answer that will solve every problem – learn the language. No time spent on waiting, no time spent on complaining.

  16. Will we be getting a demo for this game?

  17. @Questions about Cartagra and Kara no Shoujo 2:

    As I said before, both those at Innocent Grey and those of us at MangaGamer would love to see more of their titles released in the West, so we’re really hoping that this title does well.

    @Importance of voices to this game:
    The story is honestly gripping enough that you’re likely to skip over the voices anyway as you get caught up in the rush to solve the case before the next girl dies.

    • the next girl will surely dies no matter what you do, you can’t change the outcome just like in Caucasus, dude.

      and the voice, of course if it’s in english you will skip it, since you can read whole text before the voice ends. That’s not happen in the original ones except you can read exactly the same when the text appears.

      • Actually, there are a few distinct places in which your decision very much does directly determine whether the girl lives, dies, or remains in one piece…

      • Jesus christ dude, thanks for the f**king spoiler.

        • That comment was in response to the poster named “sucks”. Not Koryuu’s response, which was posted while I was making the comment.

      • Thanks so much for the spoilers, you sure are living up to your name

        • gee, thanks to both of you 🙂

          MG, you can delete all of my post if it’s disturbs the others, i just want to stated my critics to you. Looks like I got a little bit carried over.

          over and out.

        • He didn’t really spoil anything.

          Taken from the plot summary in introduction blog post: “The body count continues to rise.” Of course some death are inevitable.

  18. make an english voice-act?
    nevertheless “…..Gungnir/Innocent Grey have been very receptive and cooperative during the entire process, even voicing their hopes to be able to release more of their catalog to a western audience…” amen for that.

  19. FinalAvalanche

    If MangaGamer can port games to new engines, does that mean that they can release PS2, etc. games?

    • If they could that would certainly extend their list of potential all ages games. Doesn’t Koihime Musou have a T-rated PS2 release? That might speed up its sales if it were to be released.

    • That will probably depend on the licensing cost

  20. everyone knows that a voice patch will be made by some guys like with what happend with koihime musou, its inevitable.

    that aside im starting to take an interest in kara no shoujo, i was originally turned off by the gore but, i can overlook it if the story is good enough. i shall be keeping tabs on it X3

    • sure, the story is top notch. You will likely gonna fall in love with sugina miki’s artworks and all the games from innocent grey.

      • you think we could get MG to publish sugina miki’s artbook (this one http://www.coremagazine.co.jp/book/nuregarasu/)

        • Wow, that looks nice. I’m not sure if it’s something I would buy, but I do have to say it looks good.

          • the content of that artbook is nice, I always look upon that whenever i’m going to sleep.

            now I’m looking for cartagra artbook… anybody knows where I can find it?

        • She really sucks at toes and character sprites ;_;

          • Says you who never played anything from IG? Just stop making up rubbish please.
            Protip: his (Miki Sugina is a guy) tachies are damn awesome, in all his games.

          • Why do I need to play the game to judge the art?

            and a hurp durp to you,sir

          • you haven’t play caucasus then D:

          • I’ve looked at the art for all of them. everything but the character sprites and the feet are fine,like I said before.

          • really? well, it’s personal interest, so yeah 🙂

          • Because you need to see it in game to have any sense of definition regarding tachies. No, seeing like 30 screenshots isn’t enough to say “his character sprites suck”, because they don’t. They are fluid, versatile and gorgeous, they really feel alive ingame unlike 99% of eroge out there, and seeing someone dismissing it based on nothing is just an insult. Miki Sugina truly is one of the best artist making art for eroge.

            “hurp durp”
            Please grow up finally.

          • well he(fujifruit) didn’t see all of the artworks from way before cartagra to caucasus, so he didn’t know how his(miki-san) style 🙂

          • @izmos

            Honestly, to deny fujifruit of his own opinion doesn’t sound very mature either…
            If he doesn’t like the sprites, then he doesn’t like the sprites. He thinks he can base his opinion on quite a few screenshots he’s seen, then that’s his right. It’s not like it’s entirely baseless.

            I, too, have to say I am not smitten over the artwork. I don’t hate it, and that’s why I am still going to get this game… However, I can see where fujifruit is coming from.

          • I’ve looked at all the cgs.
            Izmo,I’ve learned to ignore your trolling,so good bai.

            And to quote you “You need a need hobby”.

            “30 screenshots” I said I’ve looked at ALL of them,bro.

            Telling me to grow up by bashing my opinion doesn’t seem very “grown up” either.

            As I already said,the artwork is amazing besides the awkward feet and sprites.

            Well bye troll.

          • i guess no one gonna edit or critics that izmos said, oh well, let me then 🙂

            Sugina Miki is a woman, you can hear her voice from the 3rd kara no shoujo drama cd (ドラマCD 殻ノ少女 第三巻 「シェオルの殻」), 8th track (櫻羽女学院放送局 その3), where Touko, Tojiko and another Touko talk each other.

            She didn’t want people to call her, sensei, instead, she wanted people to call her Sugi-sama 🙂

          • @sucks
            I don’t know, I assumed she is a he due to the comment I’ve read on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Caucasus:_Nanatsuki_no_Nie about her/him. I stand corrected I guess.

          • @izmos, bout time you show up and counter mine, lol 🙂

            sorry for the late reply thou 🙂
            well yes, he is a guy lol.

            I just like picking on people 😀 glad to have someone who can talk about 🙂

            in drama cd 3 i was talking about, kuchiki touko’s seiyuu, aji sanma are the one who represented as sugina miki :))

  21. I can’t say I don’t care about the lack of voices, of course, but I can understand that there wasn’t a choice and I would much rather have the game in English than not have it at all; and I mean, even having to develop a new engine for the game? Lots of respect for you MG (… Besides, a voice patch is kind of inevitable). Furthermore, all I’ve read about this game sounds incredibly exciting.

  22. who is the blond chick during the opening i looked at the character list on the product page but didn’t find her

  23. You should better stop translating game without voices and rather start to deal with compagnies who aren’t so narrow minded.

    May be you can deal with innocent grey and base son to sell a deluxe voiced version but with a higher price.

    I will buy this voiced version but never the unvoices version, sorry.

    • Learn to read? Not having voices was against the wishes of Innocent Grey. They can’t do anything about the voice acting agency.

    • That won’t work. If there is an unvoiced version and a voiced version, MG still has to pay the whole shabam for the voices… It’s not like the voice costs are suddenly cut in half.
      People will then only buy the unvoiced version (save for a few people, like you) and MG is stuck with an overpriced voiced version they spent so much money on.

    • yay, another friend 🙂

  24. I have to say I might actually buy the game now. The fact both Mangagamer AND Innocent Gray attempted to get us voices is a big plus in my book. I for one was extremely pissed off with BaseSon for doing the dick move of overpricing the voices for a game. I’m sure they lost a lot of business because of it and will not likely sell much else without voices.

    Innocent Gray wishes to release more titles then I’m all for it. I can only hope that the sequel to this would be included in that (assuming it does well).

    I do have to ask if that means future titles released by them would also be subject to the issue of lack of voices or if it is just this title?

    When I hopefully get a job on Monday I will definitely be putting some money aside to purchase the game…although I do think the price is a bit high for no voices for a medium length game.

    • In my opinion 25 € is a fine price – even without voices. In the past I bought more expensive games for less game time. (I think with “medium” you mean the medium defined by VNDB)

    • i also like the fact the attempted to get the voices, its a shame the were trying to charge “outlandish” prices for them but hey…we will get an unofficial voice patch free of charge more than likely so it all works out.

  25. Well, I’ll buy it to support Manga Gamer and I hope that when Innocent Gray makes their 2nd game they will chose someone else other than BaseSon to put voices in their new game. (That’s pure justice right there! Serves them right! lol j/k) 🙂

  26. Oookay time to buy & wait 2 weeks for a voice patch. Koihime 2.0.

  27. Personally, I’m not so bothered by the lack of voices. Sure, if you spent money dubbing it in English I would have been upset (I generally really dislike American English dubbing and find the quality below mediocre), but not having the original voices seems an acceptable “sacrifice”. The game is very well drawn and seems pretty interesting, so I’m happy you decided to localise it anyway!

    • Dubbing is whats killing the anime industry.

    • Person with Common Sense

      That’s a huge generalization. A lot of dubs are just as good as the original japanese audio track, and a couple (in my opion) are even better than the original. At least for a native english speaker to listen to.

      Anyway I doubt MangaGamer would ever spend the money or resources on dubbing a VN into english, mainly because:
      1) They’re just concentrating on getting us the games for the cheapest possible prices – dubbing would just complicate matters
      2) Obviously VNs have an insane amount of text, and voiced dialogue, so dubbing would not only be super expensive, but it would also take a huge amount of time and effort..

      So yeah, in conclusion, dubs aren’t really worth the effort for VNs. Although personally I think it would be amazing to have a well-dubbed VN (play any ‘Ar Tonelico’ game and you’ll agree with me)

    • NO,english dubbing is the worst of the world ¬¬

  28. Yep, definitely looking forward to buying this. I’m hoping IG isn’t using the same agency for voice talent, or at least negotiates better terms for themselves in the future.

  29. Heh well while personally I’d love to put this on hold till someone makes a voice patch and play only then, I don’t have so many hopes about voice patches from Anon anymore. Surely there is *some* hope but one example of Koihime Musou getting voice patch isn’t enough. Some Anon promised to make voices for Higurashi, and where is the result? Still nowhere to be seen, just like 1.5 years ago when people tried to make such patch. Difficulties of switching engine + others, and here you go, voices exist but can’t be used. And for Kara no Shoujo, if developers merge/split conversations and do deeper alterations (not everyone likes that, but one must admit, sometimes it’s a good idea to make some), it might make voice inserting a very hard and tiresome manual task and no one will bother actually doing it, just like it happened with Higurashi.

    For the record, out of my head I recall at least one game released by G-Collections and two released by JAST (or something) – and there probably are more examples – which were re-released with voices in Japan, but never got voice patches or anything for english versions, even though some people wanted to get them. Some might say, “bad/old example, no one cares about these anymore”, well just like to remind that reality is harsh.

    Staying on topic, many thanks to MangaGamer for trying their best and not giving up completely on this when “best possible option” didn’t work out.

    • Higurashi never had voices to begin with, unless you’re talking about the stuff from the PS2 port, so there’s no incentive to add them in. With Koihime, the original had voices but Mangagamer removed them, so that motivated the anons to make one right away. Kara no Shoujo is a very well known title unlike, say, 80% of the stuff JAST releases, so I’d be extremely surprised if a fan patch isn’t made to add the voices in.

  30. — well, for me, i think it’s better to be unvoiced FOR NOW. No voice for amazing artwork and new unique engine? I think that’s an acceptable bargaining. For you who wait voice, good anon will pop up and show their works.

    One more thing, for me, if i play KnS, i prefer unvoice. I dont want to get sudden heart attack when i read this. (a scream from a girl… That’s the first thing i have in my mind when i see KnS…)

  31. Urghh cannot believe all the people MOANING about this… To those who have said they’ll buy it without the voices, thank you- you have some sort of sense… Maybe if we buy enough copies of this, and their other games, companies might start doing better deals with the voices?

    As I said, it would be great to have the voices but just deal with it! I’ll be buying this, as personally I think it looks a lot more interesting than about 80% of the games MangaGamer picks up (No offence, I’m just not into over the top, extreme H-games for my own reasons…)

  32. This actually has a story. I don’t need voices to enjoy it.

  33. I officially take back what I said on the JAST forums about the voice issue (that’ll teach me not to assume that similar situations are caused by the same set of circumstances and decision-making). It’s a shame that we won’t be getting the voices, but there’s nothing we, or MangaGamer, can do about it.

    This kind of reminds me of when Crispin Glover’s agent got greedy when the man was asked to reprise his role as George McFly in Back to the Future Parts II and III; they just didn’t have the money to give in to his demands, so they had to go on without him. I see the inevitable unofficial voice patch as the sunglasses and makeup they had to use on Glover’s stand-in.

    Now, voices or no, I’m still stuck waiting for a pressed copy… (Goes off to preorder Da Capo II LE).

  34. I LOVE this VN! And I love Kuchiki Toko! shes gives me this mysterious dark sensation when I see her character. I was never into the anime girls with the front bangs or her hairstyle typically but then I just like her character so much that the hairstyle just grew on me xD And Thank you both IGrey and MangaGamer for letting me test out this game.

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