Umineko Twilight 49 – Intellectual Masturbation (Adventures of the Cynical Detective)

Additional Writer’s Notes

– This is exactly a detailed train of thought which took place while solving this mystery so it is bound for some points to be repeated.
– The rules are fully shown when the reader has finished reading the whole mystery one time, so some reasoning doesn’t necessary takes them in consideration (they are fully taken in consideration by the end)
– This is a 10k word post. Possibly the longest Umineko post I’ve written. The editing was insane and there’s probably some more to do (there is always some). Oh yeaaah.. I probably won’t type this much again.
– There was something bothering me about picking the wrong culprit since it might mess with the ending of the game. Same as in Higurashi with red and blue box the game might ‘remember’ your previous pick.
– Initially, I thought this was a mystery but not exactly “Umineko” meaning with the same characters and names but not with the same setting therefore the initial reasoning didn’t take this into consideration.
– This step-by-step reasoning doesn’t include Erika’s alternative solution.
– Somehow it slipped my mind doors could also be locked from the inside. I doubted the servants and made intricate theories about how the 1st twilight might’ve happened.
– Similarly the “there are no lies in the narration” also slipped my mind thus why there are several “Because B didn’t say anything, what A said was probably true.” and “everyone agreed” in this post.
– And so I didn’t necessarily “use” the rules initially while doing all the thinking but mostly based on what made most sense. This worked out. Ultimately, I did took a harder look at the rules before coming with the final solution.
– I did try to make the whole step-by-step as readable as possible.
– How the 2nd culprit entered the guesthouse was tricky. This is why many (even far-fetched) theories are provided.
– How Nanjo was killed was also tricky. We do know for a fact that he could have only been killed by the 2nd culprit
– Again 1st culprit -> Kyrie 2nd culprit -> Rudolf 3rd Culprit Battler. Kyrie killed the first six, Battler killed Shannon as it was the only chance the 3rd culprit had to commit a crime. The 2nd culprit kill the rest.
– The name of the title (for those who are curious) is loosely based on the *theme* of golden age detectives I usually find – whimsical and sardonic figures who solve mysteries. It is also a reference to the detective Willard H. Wright is based on who was often described in such way. Cynicism also as a general way to describe skepticism. “Intellectual Masturbation” is a satire of all the intellectual games in Umineko. Umineko is a very masturbatory story. No, really, it just is.
– The narration/explanation for the 1st twilight was optional from my part so it doesn’t necessary mean it is 100% certain. I only needed to provide the who and how after all.
– I do hope all Umineko readers used the hints sparely. Seeing how much we’ve all gone through I think it was very solvable. I only used them after I solved them to read the dialogue.
– Mad fun.

~ And All The Goats.
– Keikakudoori

6 thoughts on “Umineko Twilight 49 – Intellectual Masturbation (Adventures of the Cynical Detective)

  1. Bern’s mistery was easy to solve thanks to the very strict rules she imposed. What I find more intriguing is WHY Ryukishi decided to put this kind of mistery in the final game.
    I think this is one of many jabs that Ryukishi threw to the readers in this tale (the army of goats eating Rokkenjima being the most blatant).
    “Here, let’s strip the mistery of all magical elements, let’s throw away the multiple keys, the body doubles, the closed room tricks. I even underlined the relevant lines for you! Can you solve this basic mistery, you amateur detective? Is this really what you wanted?”. That’s what I think Ryukishi was saying to us.

    • Wouldn’t put it past Ryukishi, eh? I think that like most things in Umineko it can be interpreted in several ways.

      The puzzle could be the last chance for the readers to solve a puzzle directly from the author with an actual solution.

      It could be Bernkastel really stalling for time and throwing a mystery to the readers. One who anyone could solve with some thinking, also one showing us the”truth” we reached in EP7.

      It also be (I’m voting for this one the most) A trial, a rite of passage/final test/ to graduate the readers from all those mysteries they’ve been throwing at us. If you can’t solve this, well, you probably should practice more.

      It could also be a confirmation of the (well not all) Rules Umineko questions Arcs played by. A shorter version of Knox and Van Dine if you will.

      It could just be the fact of seeing the two main characters work together and solve a mystery, which was quite interesting seeing how the two used to be enemies. And many others.

      Granted, the difficulty isn’t the hardest one (maybe because they did want all the readers to move forward) and like you said the very rules they gave us made the mystery quite solvable. Personally, I would have really liked for Ryukishi to implement something like this in his games. Readers actually solving mysteries (at least make some actual calls) so they can move on to the next sections.

      It’s an ambitious idea with some serious tweaking required but one that would really change how we look at the series.

  2. As usual, one of the goats here!… Hmn, well, you know. I’ve been following you for some time, but haven’t actually commented to the best of my faulty memory. I very much enjoyed the… Interesting possible scenario… You’ve created, and if you wouldn’t mind would love to nitpick some details with you later! I doubt I can actually create a counter-scenario, but for the love of detective fiction there should always be a Hastings to one’s Poirot.

    But for now, as cynical as the detective (and all grow cynical eventually it seems), I do hope you used intellectual masturbation as the highest of praise!.. ‘Cuz, there’s not enough out there that is, in my mind. And intellectual masturbation is the best kind, wahaha! More to the point, I’d love to see a proper mystery from Ryukishi, or anyone really. It’s just that Ryukishi is shown he CAN write them, and they are rather hard to write while remaining fair… Probably one of the reasons for the ‘Fantasy’ route in Umineko, of course.

    If I may, however, back to you for a second. I’ve really enjoyed everything you’ve had to say, both in this tea party and in regard to mysteries in general. I was a mystery fan who had Umineko recommended to them, and feel that even with it’s flaws, it is a splendid piece, the first modern mystery I’ve read in some time and truly enjoyed… Again, flaws considered. Your thoughts are insightful, and I feel that though we have not talked directly, we would be good friends.

    Even if the seagull cries wolf (that sounded much wittier in my head i swear), I hope you review more works and just continue to share your thoughts from time to time. I can’t promise to comment, but I can promise to enjoy. Wishing you the v. best of health and success in all endeavors, warmly


    • The kind compliments are well appreciated. *tips hat*

      Why, of course, the title was intended in a positive manner, a bit more candidly than satirical. There are, after all, few better brain stimulant than solving a difficult puzzle and thinking of the probabilities before reaching the answer. Though I do admit being peculiar about titles..

      Fully explaining the whole train of thought is no small task and so much of what it is usually said here is only a fraction. This is another reason why I especially made this “mystery” section of Umineko EP8 especially comprehensive to show all the possible thinking that it could inspire (this being only of one person. Imagine from everyone’s). I’ve been eagerly looking forward to R07 writing a regular mystery since EP5 happened. The mystery that Umineko created could not have been possible without the much extravagant and mysterious magic part yet I do want to see more regular mysteries in the future. I see incredible potential in it and for the series (or maybe a new series) taking a different (if only temporary) turn. This is, in a way, also wishing for the author to keep making the audience think.

      I love solving problems which often come in form of mysteries or puzzles, thus whenever there is an incredible impossible problem to be solved I’ll be there forming some theories of my own. Due to not restrictions and such, however, they don’t make it here. Still I have played and read other material in a similar vein of this franchise so you’ll probably find every now and then acts of Theorizing around here. I’ll recommend to take eventually take a look at those titles as you may find them to your liking.

      Thank you for commenting.

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