I should have seen this coming. MangaGamer has just announced that they’ll be officially releasing Umineko in English! The format will be similar to their new release of Higurashi.
- They’ll be using Witch Hunt’s translation, but working with them to improve it.
- It’ll have all the original music.
- Just like with Higurashi, they’ll be using new character artwork not used in the Japanese console version. The sprites in the teaser image are from the Umineko pachinko game, though there’s the possibility those are just placeholders. Either way, we’ll have the option to switch between the original and new sprites.
- Just like with Higurashi, they’ll be releasing it episode by episode.
- It’ll be released on Steam and their own site (I recommend buying from their own site since it has less DRM).
I’d bet 20 to the dollar some die-hard fans will complain about them messing with the translation. To be honest, though, some lines in Witch Hunt’s patch were rather stilted. I’m excited to replay Umineko through this version (even if it takes years to come out). The thing I’m really looking forward to, though, is the many new fans the increased exposure will bring to Umineko.
Some interesting stuff was also brought up in the Q&A of MangaGamer’s panel, which has a transcript from bayoab:
- They might release the Umineko fighting game, Ougon Musou Kyoku, if lots of people buy Umineko.
- “It would be great” if Higanbana or Rose Guns Days were also released in English. That’s a tight-lipped response, but the Japanese versions of those games are still absent from their site’s store, so an official release might be in the pipes for them.