Guide: Tweaking the Higurashi games – I salute you anons

If you don't mind I'll be taking this home

Excellent work my fellow Higurashi fans. Since I linked to the Mangagamer post the other day I remembered that there was something to be done about the game on top of many things. So I was messing around with the files and I thought it was time that I proceed to upgrade the original pc version to the PS2 looking one, that is. But it wasn’t the first time I heard about modifying the PC games as I learned from it last year in a Higurashi thread in a /jp/ thread which I’m sure many of you have come across when searching for the Higurashi games. The hard work of these anons is ADMIRABLE.So I took it upon myself to put a guide with some screenshots to show the final result of their hard work. As usual it first started with simple discussions back at /jp/ ranting and ramblings such as getting rid of the menu side bar, comments about how terribly difficult it was going to be going back from Umineko to Higurashi, posting their anon to-do-list one of the categories Rika being someone’s waifu, Chris Tucker somehow makes his way in a Higurashi thread (DAAMN!), Mangachan being fonthacked (yet again), anons explaining the work to be done, pointing out that a lot of tracks were replaced, people mentioning the delicious R07 trollfaces.. someone in a bear suit and near the end Beatroll. Once they got their stuff together they were able to make great progress and to present us with upgrades for the PC version which are most welcomed. BTW the patch files can be found @ Tweaking Higurashi Wiki page for download. Now let’s process by introduction of the files you’ll be needing when you decide to upgrade to the PS2 shiny looking ones. These are the files you’ll be needing on addition to the original game.

These are the basic ones. There are more files you can use of course. I will mention here how some of them work and what others just don’t work that well.  Whatever you don’t get now will be explain later. Let’s get this going!

REPLACING FONT

You can call it ok if you wish but Mangagamer’s font does not get any love from me.. and not from many either. It doesn’t look that bad, you say? That’s because the pic I’m using is already of the Ps2 version. Now try this and see if you still think the same.

What just happened here? In the original game is way easier to notice the difference I was mentioning. Mangagamer’s font always gives me a strange feeling that I don’t enjoy at all. It feels so wrong and unfitting for the game that you can’t put it exactly why it is so bad about it other than you really don’t like the font they’re using. I don’t know why they keep making the same mistake but I’m sure they already know of the problem and are thinking about how to fix it. If you’re cool with the current font then you don’t need to follow this step. If you’d like another font then proceed.

font folder to place consolas.ttf

Solution: Download “fonthack” and place ipl._bp which is found inside it into the main higurashiwhentheycry folder, like the readme file says then copy “consolas.ttf” into %WinDir%\Fonts. You can easily find the folder by using the search function on at the start button. Once you’re there just copy it onto the folder. Also in my case, it says that you already have it so you might end up skipping consolas.ttf part too. It did for me so I skipped it too. The final product should look like this one.

Ah, better font. That’s much more like it

Hide UI

See that menu sidebar on the pictures above? That blue thing that it is there no matter what you do? The only way to temporarily get rid of it is by right clicking on the screen so that all text is gone and you can get a clear textless picture, however, that does not get rid of it at all. Here’s what you do to make it disappear in case you want to take screen shots without having that pesky menu bar on the side.

Solution: Download “noframe” patch and paste the contents onto the Higurashi folder. That’s one problem solved. Ok, NOT completely my Higurashi fans.

where’d the menu sidebar go and but can’t I get it to appear again? Kana?

What is happening? Why can’t I make the configuration box appear!? I know I didn’t like it that much but what am I supposed to do when I want to call the menu options? If you uncheck “call menu” and start the game once you have already removed the sidebar menu YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO CALL THE MENU BAR. You’ll then have to forcefully close the game because you won’t be able to save or close it properly. So what do you do?

Solution: To fix this you need to close the game, restart it and go to the menu options at the very start of the game. A similar screen should pop up like the one below. Uncheck “hide text box” (Call menu on) so you won’t see the menu to the right at all but you’ll be able to summon the system menu when right click it instead.

This is the screen I am talking about once you uncheck “Hide Text Box” there should be no problem at all. You can now be freed of Mangagamer’s menu box if you rather have more Umineko like experience with menuless bars to the side.

SOUND PATCH

Very critical step if you want to get more cool sounds whenever something suddenly happens. Go to their sound patch section and dl the files to add more sounds to the Mangagamer’s version which had to remove many of them and replace them with generic sounds. There’s 31 wa_files in the HigurashiSFXpatchv1.rar  folder. Now that should do it, right? WRONG. In their Higurashifix wiki page they mentioned that V1 has stability issues. Let me tell you, they were not messing around when they said that.

I’m saying this because I tried it out myself. I used that patch and this is what happened when I went to check out the extras for no real reason I tried it for both Onikakushi and Watanagashi and I always got the error message when that mini special was over. You’ll then be forced to close the game because of it. Surprisingly, one is able to “fix” the problem by removing the wa files causing the problems as indicated at the Tweaking wiki page.

So, of course, I did and proceeded to restart it then I got the messeage once again when I tried to start the game of all things! So I removed wa_40…

Then I went and started Tatagoroshi and BAM! There’s that error again so I had to remove wa_037 and so I did. I figured it was OK now, I can start playing without getting annoyed by those error messages. I mean, I’ve already removed so many tracks and all..

So I go a little deeper into Tatagoroshi then Bam! There’s the darn error message again!

Oh, .. screw this. According to the wiki page, wa files _038, _23, _04, _037 (they’re like the siesta sisters numbers) are the ones that make your game crash. Also suspected crash errors (omitted in v2 like they said are wa_003 wa_004 wa_005 wa_006 wa_008 wa_011 wa_015 wa_016 wa_019 wa_023 wa_026 wa_029 wa_034 wa_035 wa_036 wa_038 wa_040. In the end, I gave up on V1 once I found an error message on a wa file that wasn’t listed. Unless you feel like getting rid of multiple files and be forced to restart your game over and over when you least expect it I recommend getting V2. Just dump all the files in the Higurashi folder as usual to make it work.

Music Patch

So we can appreciate the cool backgrounds music we all love. Download the Original Music Full Version to replace Mangagamer tracks (full of duplicates) with the more varied soundtrack from the release of Higurashi episodes 1-4 or so the readme file says that. Copy them onto the Higurashi folder as usual and you’ll be done with it. There’s also an Original Music Demo Version (Onikakushi-hen only) also which contains some files with the same names than the ones above. Apparently it changes farther the music for that EP. If you already played Onikakushi-hen then I recommend skipping this part unless you really want to. Since I already did and I saw no reason to touch this patch all (you can always get the PS2 demo version after all)

There’s also a ps2 Hybrid patch which it’s “recommended” (according to page) It says that it replaces all music with PS2 alternatives. In the events of duplicates or missing tracks, appropriate replacements were selected. I haven’t tried it myself either since I’m fine with the Original music full version. You can read their music page for more details on what was replaced if interested. In case, you were wondering..

This is how your final Higurashi folder should look like more or less once you’re done with everything here

CG  / Voice Patch

Perhaps the only disappointment here is that you won’t be able to get CG scenes like in was a Ps2 game. No, you will get the Ps2 sprites and backgrounds if you have been following instructions here but you won’t see cool CG images. Don’t get them confused please. Some anon was working on the voice patch but unfortunately hasn’t reported back.  He mentions that it requires a lot of work and I’m sure he is right because it takes a lot of work to get it done at least by himself so there might not be a voice patch at all :( Onikakushi is so far the only EP that has voice acting included as far as I know, so it’ll be wise to not expect one any time soon. It is definitely a bummer but there’s not much we can do about it. The game can still be very enjoyable even without it.

Sprite and BG Patches

Yes, PS2 sprites! You won’t get them until you do this final step! The Higurashi wiki page contains patches for  PS2 sprites and backgrounds patch for Higurashi PC v1.1b and v1.1. There’s also only Ps2 sprites and background only patches in case you’re interested in only getting one of them. I haven’ t tried them out myself as I went for the full patch because I wanted to get the full experience as much as it is possible. I recommend reading their ‘recurring errors” section on that page so you know what you may come across. According to their page everything has listed there has been fixed in v1.1b which it’s the only I recommend getting. And that’s it. You’re done!

That concludes this guide I put together. Hopefully, it was most useful to you and for those future VN readers that will one day pick up the games and feel like making changes so they can enjoy maximize their Higurashi experience. This is still experimental for most part with other parts which are definitely guaranteed to work so there might be some unknown problems the guys in charge couldn’t fix so beware. If you’re feeling adventurous you can give a try to the other files and see it goes, as for this version I haven’t come across errors yet.

Happy reading and much thanks to the people involved in it to make this possible!

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9 thoughts on “Guide: Tweaking the Higurashi games – I salute you anons

  1. Wow I didn’t know there is too many ways to modificate higurashi (mangagamer version) I think I will try it when I finish tatagoroshi-hen It might not work very well with save games.

    • I loaded one of the save files (old one) and it worked just fine. I was surprised it did actually since I was expecting it to crash, so no worries there.

    • I wouldn’t recommend it. It does work but it’ll take a while to get rid of all wa files that cause the game to repeatedly crash.

  2. I wonder why Umineko never got Updated character sprites… >_>

    At least they look better than the original Higurashi sprites, but the hamster hands still bother the fuck outta me.

    • That’s because there sprites are from higurashi games for NDS or PS2 ( i do not know very well which one) but umineko does not have any Sound novel except the pc ones. Who knows. maybe if there is an umineko adaptation on the future there will be updates too.

      • Personally, I’m cool with the VN sprites of Umineko. They look perfect or at least very fitting. I think R07 REALLY stepped up his game on it after Higurashi, which despite being awesome its sprites do look kinda weird. An Umineko Ps2 version would be awesome since it’d have the anime voices :D

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