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Headscratchers: Umineko: When They Cry
aka: Uminekono Naku Koro Ni
  • If we're to take Battler's direct testimony as more or less truth in the first arc; then Maria knows how to write pentagrams, crappy Hebrew, the Ars Goetia; the 4 Archangels, etc. and keeps Scorpion Amulets. This level of knowledge requires intense study, especially for a nine-year old. Even if this stuff is mumbo-jumbo...who on earth taught this to her? It likely wasn't her mother; she can't stand that Maria is fascinated by the stuff.
    • Given how "magic" (either themes or the actual stuff) is the theme of the murders, perhaps the source is related to the mystery?
      • Did you miss the part where Maria was best friends with Beatrice? Someone is at least playing the character for Maria; anyway, that knowledge isn't at all difficult to get ahold of, and Maria is fascinated and obsessed enough to study on her own, so there's no necessity for someone to teach her, per se.
      • Maria's knowledge is true, but she knows a lot less them it seems. For starters, the Scorpion Amulet is hinted to be a simple toy, not a genuine charm. Her Hebrew is crappy because she doesn't really know the language but instead, memorized how to 'draw' the magic circles from books. In EP7 it is revealed it was Maria who taught Beatrice. This, however, doesn't mean she is all the knowledgeable in the occult, but rather that the murderers happen following the few things Maria knows. Maria only knows about some random specific topics but as, 'by chance', Beatrice used pentagrams Maria knew and Maria is the only one explaining them to Battler, it seems her knowledge is more vast than it actually is.
      • Take it from This Troper, many books on hermetic and kaballistic sorcery were available in bookstores and libraries in the mid-80's. The occult "celebrities" from 1880's-1920's were highly prolific writers: Samuel Mathers, Israel Regardie, Dion Fortune, and of course Alistair Crowley. In the early 80's, the "New Age" fad had boomed into a cottage industry, so not only were they getting republished, many more books were written about them.
      • Maria explains that in EP 7 that the reason she studied so much of the occult was so that she would have a unique knowledge of something that others could ask their advice about.
      • Maybe Kinzo taught her?
      • There's nothing to indicate that Kinzo taught her. Aside from EP8, where Kinzo was portrayed as a doting grandfather largely for Ange's benefit, he hardly acknowledged her. It's made pretty clear that Maria's interest in the occult is her own.
  • A lot of theories are discussed in the WMG using the Knox Decalogue, I discovered TV Tropes not so long ago so I wanted to know, how did you guys managed to discuss theories before episode 5 and the introduction of Knox Decalogue in Umineko? I know that Know decalogue is a real life thing btw.Wasn't the WMG really messy back then?
    • Not really. Or at least not any more messy as it is now. Besides, there's no evidence that Beatrice's Gameboard actually follows the Knox Decalogue. In fact, I'm personally pretty certain that it doesn't.
    • Beatrice suggested the possibility of following Knox as early as episode 2 — Not in red, mind you, but it still enough to get people thinking by Knox rules.
  • Am I missing something here? How can meta-Battler insist that magic doesn't exist when he and Beatrice casually rewind and rewrite reality when arguing the point?
    • It is a phenomenal case of cognitive dissonance, isn't it? Later on, he starts changing his tune and saying that magic didn't cause the murders, which is far easier for him. All in all, though, Battler does accept that belief can change reality, if only in the sense that it does in {{1984}} - that if everyone believes a lie, then that lie may as well become the truth. He just accepts it from a more secular standpoint than Beato and Maria do - it's not magic that causes it, it's just people refusing to accept what actually happened. If you look at it from that standpoint, the rewriting of reality starts to make a little more sense. The rewinding, well, less so, unless maybe Battler also believes he's a little nuts (I know I do)?
      • Frankly, the only way I can see where Battler actually wins this is without some ridiculous amount of Fridge Logic is on equally weak semantic grounds. He should just hide behind Clark's Third Law and declare it's all Science. Maybe Beatrice has the Enterprise parked in stationary orbit above the island.
      • Such a device doesn’t exist. It can’t exist. Knox’s 4th Law states that it is forbidden for such unexplained potions and devices to exist in this world.
      • Clark's Third Law is cheating. Lambda said so.
      • Okay. Now I'm trying to think of it in the least mind-screwy way possible - meta-Battler accepts magic and is thus cool with all the fucking with reality, but he has to prove that the murders weren't magical simply because he's the only remaining soul among the sacrifices who has yet to accept them as such: it makes him the only thing standing in the way of the actualization of the ritual and Beatrice's resurrection, and he sort of prefers a universe governed by logic and sanity over one ruled by a murderous witch (even if he ends up staying dead for all his trouble). The source material just doesn't seem to agree with the whole of this interpretation.
      • Yes. Exactly. Battler really doesn't give a damn about what happens in the Meta World as long as he can prove that the Game Board murders didn't involve magic. Then it gets even more fun when he starts using blue text, which with schrodingers box, rewrites reality as long as it's not denied in red.
      • Also, honestly? It's called Meta World for a reason. I wouldn't think about it too hard.
    • He accepted that Beatrice's existence would be a product of belief, it it were permitted, and was determined to banish her by disproving her. When everyone around him started crumbling, why didn't he realize he had nothing to gain by winning? Without the magic as the cause of their deaths, there would be no magic to resurrect them. Beatrice pretty much pointed that out at the end: he's the only one living on that island. His entire family gone, and the gold nothing but a legend because no magic exists to have produced it in he first place. Unless his intent was to inherit the remaining assets with everyone out of the way, why the hell would he even proceed?
      • Because only by defeating Beatrice can he secure a world in which it's possible to prevent the murders. You can stop a nut with a gun, but you can't defeat a god-like wielder of magic. He must win or else Ange will be all alone, and killed by Kasumi Sumadera, in every possible world.
      • You missed the point — if the magic isn't real, then it's too late to stop that nut with a gun, those people are by his own reasoning already dead. If it is real and he can null it with deduction and determination, what magic is going to undo the murders anyway? If his purpose is to protect Ange (which there was no clue to by that point in the story, by the way,) then the only logical choice is to cut his losses and get out while he can.
      • Supposedly, if Battler wins his duel with Beatrice, he will destroy all lies, discover the true culprit and travel back to the beginning of the story. Plus, even though the Anime will make you think the contrary, Battler's goal isn't to deny magic, but to deny that the murders are magical. But try telling that to DEEN's staff...
      • Actually, that's not true. Battler's initial goal is to deny all magic. It's only later, I think about halfway through the 3rd arc or near the beginning of the 4th arc that it changes to proving that all crimes could be possible by a human culprit. But his initial objective from the first tea party up to the Beato-Viriglia battle was to completely deny magic. Hence, why he was so traumatized by the magic battles in the third arc, since even though they didn't have to do with the murders, he couldn't figure out any way to counter them except by accepting that they were magic.
      • In the anime, it's explicitly mentioned to Beatrice that the primary reason Battler won't accept witches and magic is that the murders supposedly being done by the magic are too gruesome to actually be practical sacrifices. Someone above said something about the difference between a homicidal maniac and a god-like witch, and that is the very issue that Battler has: the maniac with a gun would explain the nature of the deaths by their mania, while a witch could kill them in their sleep instead of grinding their faces off. In fact, he starts to warm up to Beato and initially allows that witches could exist after he sees Beato killing 'elegantly' instead of exactly as one would expect a 'maniac with a gun' to kill.
    • One thing that should be noted is that there is a difference between knowing something exists and believing in it. It's an important distinction, even if it doesn't fit the explanations.
    • The simplest interpretation? The meta-world isn't real. So the actions of its fictitious inhabitants are pretty well unaffected by conventional logic.
      • Exactly. Since the reveal that every single game is fiction in-universe (the bottled messages in EP 1 and 2 and Hachijo Tohya's writings afterwards), the truth of the matter is that the meta-world is just characters in a fictional story analyzing their own fictional story for the benefit of the readers who are also fictional characters and reading the story for the sake of the actual, real life readers. Ryukishi's writing is kind of twisted like that...
  • Ange claimed that the red-truths rule was an unfair rule for Battler to play under. What? If one player creates a rule that proscribes or prohibits their own behavior, it's perfectly fair to the other player. It's just as fair for them to retract it at any later time, unless the other player also created such a rule. However, creating a rule that permits behaviors, such as the blue-truths rule, would be inherently unfair until another such rule applied to the other player.
    • The Red Truth allows Beatrice to intentionally mislead Battler and avoid giving him anything that can be at all helpful, as proven by the fact that she can weave the Red Truth into something that gives a false message so long as it's not technically a lie. The Blue Truth allows him to shoot premises that Beatrice must confront one way or another, instead of simply ignoring theories of his that are valid, or undercutting them with a misleading subject change. With the Red Truth and no Blue Truth, the game is like a game of Chess where Beatrice starts off with Queens and Rooks and Battler doesn't have any.
      • The Red Truth rule doesn't demand that Beatrice hand out any admissions to anything, it simply affirms that was she says matches the circumstances of murders as they factually happened — they don't have to be the whole truth. Without that rule, she could say anything without 'carving it in granite' so to speak. She didn't create the rule to mislead, she created the rule because Battler wasn't going to trust anything she said otherwise, and the game just wouldn't progress. The Blue Truth rule on the other hand, was an attempt to make similar affirmations without Battler actually knowing the circumstances, so could be contradicted when he was wrong. Notice he didn't challenge it from the first time it was contradicted, so you know they only accepted it to placate Ange.
  • Lately, I've been wondering, how much of Beato's behavior in EP 3 was actually regret at what she'd done, and how much of it was just manipulating Battler to try to get him to recognize her? A lot of the things she does seem genuine, but then she simply undoes it all, seemingly.
    • I don't know how far along you are, so suffice to say Episode 5 should answer this question more than sufficiently.
  • The anime's way of censoring. Why can't they use the same technique they used for Higurashi (just darkening it)? The censors look pretty awkward.
    • Because the dark shadows were done by the studio and the scenes were redrawn for the DVDs. With Umineko DEEN decided to change absolutely nothing for the DVD releases not even the most obvious animation errors. Therefore they gave the full and uncensored version to the TV stations, who had to add clumsy pixelation to censor it.
      • And they couldn't choose a better censorship style other then the disturbing-awkward censorship pixels?
      • Maybe, but it is not that easy doing a good censorship and it is not their jobs (they probably don't even know how do it). If it wasn't pixel it would be a black bar or something equally bad.
  • In EP 1, Battler comments that Beatrice can't be Japanese because she has blonde hair. Jessica is right next to him.
    • Mayhaps...Jessica dyes her hair?
      • Krauss is blonde too. Of course wtf is Battler talking about with crimson red hair.
      • EP 7 almost outright states that the appearance of the characters presented to us in the novel isn't necessarily what they actually look like. It seems to be acknowledged that from the point of view of the characters, they're all normal black haired asians and such.
      • I remember the line being "she has blonde hair, and she doesn't look Japanese" rather than "she has blonde hair, so she doesn't look Japanese" (it takes awhile to get to that part though, so I can't immediately confirm it). Thinking of it that way, he's probably thinking of them as independent/semi-independent characteristics.
  • It's forbidden to directly confirm or deny the existence of magic in red, and any statement in blue needs to be countered in red. Given this, couldn't the blue truth be used to stop Battler from using the Devil's Proof, for example "The small bombs were made using magic.", would require Battler to explain how the small bombs were made as he wouldn't be able to say "The small bombs weren't made with magic" in red even if it is true.
    • No. Battler only has to prove it's possible for a human culprit to carry out the crime. In this case, there would be two simultaneous truths, 'small bombs were made by some unknown method X' and 'small bombs were made by magic' which would exist at the same time due to the fact that until one of them is proven, both are true like a Schrodinger's Cat experiment.
  • This is more about this series' WMG page, but — people keep using gold text. From what I can tell, we still don't know EXACTLY what it does. It Just Bugs Me that people keep using it all the time in their theories despite the fact that they don't know exactly what it means. (If we do know what gold text means now, please correct me.)
    • You're right. Furthermore, one of the few things known about the gold text is that only people who understand the truth of the game can use it.
    • As far as I can gather, it goes like this: The Red are objectively true facts, though they can be worded in ways to mislead people. The Blue are hypotheses that can be confirmed or denied by the fact, aka the Red. The Gold, on the other hand, is a Word of God, a statement from someone who know the right answer, but you have to actually trust them that they are telling you the right answer. Let's put it into a different context for an example: You are playing a Dungeons & Dragons game. You rolling a ten is a Red, a fact that cannot be questioned. The DM saying that it dealt 8 damage and the monster is still alive is a Gold, since he is the only one who has the monster-table in from of him and you have to trust his word on and that he wouldn't lie to you about it just to mess with you.
  • As far as I can tell Beatrice is Virgilia's name and only became a title later. Furthermore, EVA-Beatrice and ANGE-Beatrice are referred to by their original names. So why isn't Beato ever referred to by name?

  • Without having read the manga, played the games, etc, only watched the anime, I'm asking here. Is Maria...Developmentally challenged, shall we say? Nine is a little old to still have imaginary friends, be so childish, and suchlike. I mean, she has excuses for it if she isn't, but... Also, is it just me, or was Rosa extremely bipolar in the first and second Mysteries? In the third she seemed to genuinely care for Maria, and in the fourth, she was a complete psycho hose beast who deserved everything she got. Given these apparent differences before they got to the island, I'm thinking this isn't different versions of the mystery, but whole different worlds, with possibly changed backstories, much like what Rika was going through in Higurashi. This is all probably page 1 stuff from the non-anime stuff, but like I said...
    • Maria's childish behavior is one of the reasons for Rosa acting the way she acts. She is not sure how to raise a child, but she is sure she is doing something wrong. For Rosa, yeah, I guess you could call her bipolar. She does obviously care for Maria, in a way, as seem in the 2nd and 3rd arc, but, at same time, she doesn't. This is probably also one of the reasons Maria is childish.
    • As far as episode 4 scenes go. Keep in mind Maria was sleeping at that time, and after MARIA was "done", Maria woke up. So that was probably just a dream. However an important scene (as far as their relationship goes) that was cut before Rosa smashed one of Maria's little rabbit figurines, sows that Maria had been taking the dolls to school and playing with them in class. The teacher confronted Rosa and Rosa defended (probably forcefully) Maria saying she wouldn't do that. Turns out she was completely wrong so she punished Maria. Also some new information about Maria's father explains Rosa's treatment of Maria.
      • Bear in mind that in plenty of scenes it's implied that Rosa's behavior and emotions are being exaggerated, such as in most of the Magic Scenes. As for Maria's childishness, she's developmentally stunted, having been denied any friendship with her classmates, and being effectively on her own for most of her childhood and thus having no examples of how grownups behave. Growing up in a social vacuum doesn't prompt one to mature.
      • If the scene in question involving Maria's revenge was a dream than it would be difficult to seriously consider Rosa's cruel words as Rosa's genuine feelings towards Maria. Rosa's rants of how she's "hated Maria since before she was born" may have been very likely to have just been Maria's fears that her mother never really loved her.
    • Going by the games, it seems heavily implied that Maria does have some sort of pervasive developmental disorder (Rosa implies that she has a lot of developmental delays, and one of the things that tends to set Rosa off on Maria is when somebody asks how old she is — which she seems to interpret as "are you sure she's nine?").
    • Mind you, Rosa is shown to be a lot less horrific when shown from a reliable perspective; Maria is most certainly not reliable. Note that part of the problem with all of this is that flashbacks are given with unclear times, particularly Maria's. It is known that Rosa watched the actual Beatrice die, and blames herself for it — Beatrice (II) was kept hidden away in the Kuwadorian as Kinzo's mistress, which Rosa stumbled upon as a young girl. Beatrice pleads with Rosa, and Rosa helps her escape… and because this is Umineko, the ground caves in along the cliffs, and she falls to her death. Rosa did nothing wrong — she freed a woman trapped by and forced into incest with her father — and for it, gets to live a life of terrible guilt believing she killed her; something wonderful she gets to remember every time Maria mentions "Beatrice". Another thing to note that other than that, Rosa's neglectful treatment seems to stem from genuinely working, as opposed to having secret relationships with the boyfriend Maria suspects to exist — it's mentioned at one point that Rosa hasn't been able to have a romantic relationship since Maria's birth; other than that, the only evidence is Maria's dream sequence (during which Rosa is horrifically murdered by her own daughter hundreds of times… totally not biased at all) where Maria finds a receipt for an inn Rosa stayed at. Episode 5 suggested that she actually went to see Rudolph and Eva about confronting Krauss, and was felt guilty for having left Maria alone; when she is asked why she didn't bring Maria, Rosa says that she never wants Maria to have to worry about Rosa's own problems, and to never discuss the issue of the inheritance in her presence. It should also be mentioned that Rosa's own monetary problems exist because she cosigned a loan with Maria's father, hoping he'd become a good father if she paid it off — and that this is the reason her business is in trouble.
    • Another thing to mentioned is that while Maria was Rescued from the Scrappy Heap in the eyes of some of the fandom after Episode 4, it is known openly that Maria knew about a number of the murders before they took place, and that the Beatrice she worships is actually a delusion murderer — and yet, she idolizes her to the point that Maria was in the room while "Beatrice" murdered Genji, Nanjo, and Kumasawa (very, very loudly), and failed to realize something was wrong. Driving this home, Maria makes mention of the fact the Kumasawa was screaming for her not to kill them, and still continues to idolize Beatrice, to the point where she runs up and hugs her right after she kills Natsuhi. Maria is also known to fantasize about the people she dislikes being killed violently over and over again, and is explicitly noted she does this with Rosa and some of the bullies, and it is implied this also happened with Battler… not only that, but she delights in them.

    • There's the fact she believes everything will be perfect when Beatrice takes them to the Golden Land, which will include Mama being nice to her and always being home. No longer being lonely and abuse might make it okay for Maria to let Beatrice do whatever is necessary to go to the Golden Land, even just sing while others are being killed...
    • If Rosa herself is legitimately bipolar, then it's easier to understand Maria's unsettling behavior if she has inherited fragile mental health from her mother.

  • Also, about the anime at least, after Battler refuses to play during Evatrice's rampage, Beato's basically told straight out that Battler doesn't want to admit that witches exist because she's acting like a psycho hose beast. He even seems...while not okay with it, understanding of the fact she apparently needs to kill everyone for the ceremony. What does she then do? Try to trick him, while cackling like a psycho hose beast. Is this poor writing, adaptation issue, Beato deliberately (Or unconsciously) sabotaging herself or is Beato simply an idiot?
    • If you pay attention to her expression right before she claims to have tricked him, you can answer your own question.
    • Getting Battler to acknowledge the existence of witches is ultimately irrelevant to Beatrice's true goal.
      • According to Beatrice's character profile in the VN she's too fickle to have an 'ultimate, true goal', and due to her obsessiveness her means become her ends. Getting Battler to accept her responsibility for the ritual was required for her resurrection, and she challenged him to a game as a means to that. By the time she won that game and her ritual succeeded, the game itself had become her ends, even before Bern and Lambda had involved enough to enforce it. The goal of her third game was to defeat Battler's second condition, to solve the mysteries without accusing anyone he knew, so while turning his suspicions on Eva, she deliberately built his trust in her and then just as deliberately destroyed it.

  • Couldn't Battler have forcibly ended the fifth game, by simply demanding that all of the other players proclaim that they are either Beatrice or Battler in red. And after they fail to do so proclaiming they aren't qualified to play the game.
    • Nope. Lambdadelta took the right of Gamemaster from Beato, for one thing, and for another, the two of them had been players of a 'higher' game from the start. Basically, Battler can't do shit about anything unless he defeats them fair and square while they cheat and piss all over the game.
      • Lambda was only able to become the Game Master because Battler consented to it.

  • How was Natsuhi is not the culprit, a violation of Knox's second? If it had been accepted Battler and Erika would have "proven" that only a witch could have committed the first twilight murders. Which is the exact opposite of what the detective is suppose to do. And thus it wasn't using supernatural means as a detective, but using supernatural means as an anti-detective.
    • It is still a violation of Knox's second, though. Also, Battler was not trying to be anti-detective, just anti-Erika. He still wanted to prove there were no witches, but also wanted to prove it was not Natsuhi.

  • Doesn't the Blue Truth hurt Battler rather then help him? For example, early in the third game Battler demands that Beato repeat "All six were killed by other people" (or something to the effect) when she refuses he claims that the refusal is the same as resigning. She tries to counter by saying None of the six people committed suicide!, but ultimately resigns. Couldn't he have used the same argument in the fourth game?
    • So how are you gathering the Blue Truth hurts Battler? If he presents a theory in Blue, Beatrice is forced to discredit it with Red by the end of the Game or it's her loss.
      • His repeat this or resign argument required her to respond before continuing the game, the Blue Truth gives her until the end of the game to respond.
      • But without the Blue Truth, she can just refuse to respond because she doesn't want to tell him he's correct. Blue Truth obligates her to answer if she can; without it, she can mislead him to think she can't repeat it because it's not true, when he might be right on the money.

  • So...what happens if Battler DID surrender to the Golden Witch? Would he and his family be forced to re-live the events for all eternity? Would they just simply disappear?
    • Not surrendering to her is what's causing them to re-live these events for all eternity, as they become the subject of literary intrigue and occult fascination. Their story is unknown, so it's told over and over to people all over the world. Surrendering would be the end of the story, and their deaths would be accepted. If Battler stops thinking, it's exactly the same as dying. We've been told this. Challenging the reality of the murders is the only thing that can save them.
    • The end of EP 2. Basically, Beato tortures and humiliates him a little bit to get him riled up, lets him get back up, and keeps playing without missing a beat. Beatrice's entire personality in the meta-world is based around getting Battler to take things personally, because that's the only way to get him to start using his head.

  • Why doesn't anyone try to challenge Dlanor's citations of Knox's Decalogue, by claiming the story isn't a Knoxian Mystery. Beato claimed it was a fantasy, and the Red Truth guarantees that the riddles are solvable, but doesn't say anything about mysteries. And the scene involving Maria's riddle book near the beginning of episode 6 clearly shows that riddles don't follow Knox.
    • The only person who'd really try is Battler, and by the time he starts thinking about it, Dlanor explains that it's not an absolute rule but a crutch to make one think from another perspective. It's useful, even if it's not literally valid. And shortly after this, Battler learns the Truth and no longer needs to question it. But yes, you're right. People commonly just assume that since they're in red, they must be valid to the game, but saying "Knox's Second" etc., only states that "Knox's X means This." It doesn't mean "Knox's X applies here."
    • Actually Beato says way back in ep 2 that her game follows Knox rules. Besides the real reason I think that both Virgilia and Dlanor said that they don't know if Beato's game follows Knox is cuz they are not Beato and only Beato can confirm that.
      • She says no such thing. She only says that she honors the tradition of no secret passages like Knox and Dine do. That's a significant difference.
      • Just the fact that the Knox Decalogue can be declared in Red proves that they apply to the games. Also, it is the entire point of the series that the mysteries are solvable and were designed to be solvable because they are messages to Battler. To put it bluntly: Yasu/Shannon/Kanon wanted to kill everyone during the family conference, no matter what. There is no question about that, as the bomb, the reparation letters with the money deposit and the sheer amount of preparation required for all that makes it about as obvious as it gets. The only reason she decides to go with the murder-mystery plot instead was the unexpected return of Battler, who was Yasu's first love. All the crazy murders in the series are just her way of betting the last of her hopes on Battler remembering their childhood promise and realizing who she is, so the entire series would make no sense if she didn't follow the Decalogue and if the crimes were unsolvable.

  • Correct me if I'm wrong, but episode 20 of the anime takes place in the 1998 after the third arc where Eva escapes, right? So when Ange and the weird occult man were talking about the Rokkenjima murders, why were there flashbacks of the second arc's murders, including the first twilight, when Eva was killed?
    • I think those flashbacks are meant to show one of the message bottles depicted the second arc.

  • Doesn't the Anti-Fantasy side have a huge advantage regardless of whether magic exists or not? Let's suppose magic really does exist. How would Ryukishi07 show this? It was established early on that its against the rules to directly confirm the existence of magic with red truth, and even if the characters in the story can't come up with a mundane explanation (or choose not to), there's always the possibility that the readers will come up with something.
    • A murder mystery is a puzzle. It's not unfair at all; the only losing condition for either side is giving up.
    • Actually, it is. And it is part of the point. Battler(the Anti-Fantasy side) has a clear winning condition, while Beatrice(the Anti-Mystery) has not. This reflect the fact Beatrice actually does not want to win at all, but to make Battler win.

  • The red text was a self-restricting rule that Beatrice imposed because otherwise, Battler could just deny everything she said, and the game would not progress. Forget what any other character claims about it, since everyone is just as much an Unreliable Narrator as she is — they're all intended to sidetrack the solution — and simply look at it's function. Certainly she can mislead with Exact Words, and she can use context to her advantage for that, but the red text itself is still precise truth. This was as much for the benefit of the viewers as for Battler.
  • Now here's what Bugs Me: Why did the writer think it was a good idea to later invalidate red text in any way? From that point on, it also became an Unreliable Narration, but here's the manifold dilemma introduced: Was the red text always unreliable, or only from the moment of the rulebreaking? Is it still reliable if not countered? If it's invalidated once, then can any of it be trusted, and if not, then what valid clues remain? Is the total of Battler's own eyewitness experience enough to actually solve the mystery without any other outside clues?
    • When was the red text ever invalidated? The only thing I can think of that even comes close is the end puzzle of EP 6, and even that has at least two readings that don't create a contradiction.
      • Episode 2, with hindsight from Episode 6: Kanon died in this room!. But by the time you know why this seems like a lie, you also know why it's not one from Beatrice's POV.
      • This is no lie. Kanon ceased from existing in this room. Therefore, he died there. It is just a matter of how you interpret the words.

  • The first twilight of the third game is a series of linked closed rooms which includes the boiler room. The door between the boiler room and courtyard doesn't have a lock. So why is it treated as a challenging mystery. It's probably the easiest one in the entire game.
    • Yes it does, the hell are you talking about?
      • In the first game its stated that the courtyard doors were built without locks.
      • Yea, and? It's a boiler room door, not a courtyard door.
      • It's a door between the boiler room and the courtyard, which makes it a both a boiler room door and a courtyard door.
      • This wouldn't be the first time details between games have been changed. Keys and guns have come in and out of existence for the sake of constructing mysteries; why not locks?
      • It might have been a typo or an oversight. Then again, they had to look for key to open the boiler room, but if the courtyard access had no look they would have taken an umbrella and enter from that side, right?

  • What happens at the end for the Meta World? Do Meta-Beatrice, Meta-Battler, Lambdadelta and Bernkastel go up like a Dream Apocalypse?
    • The Meta-World actually exists, as proven by Ange's experiences. Therefore Battler, Beatrice, and everyone else live happily ever after in the Golden Land, knowing one day Ange will return to them, and Lambdadelta and Bernkastel go to troll other universes.
      • So they become Karma Houdinis?
      • Well, Bern really. I think Lambdadelta successfully redeemed herself.
      • One person's completely internal experiences aren't really the same thing as "proof".

  • Regarding the message bottles, why didn't anyone other then Ange think to compare the handwriting in them with a sample of someone else's writing.?
    • I don't imagine much else was available; especially not Maria's; her diary was pretty much treated as a goddamn artifact.

  • It makes no sense. Battler mentioned "it" in the very first episode, what reason would Yasu have to continue the game since he already remembered what he messed up on...?
    • Warning: major spoilers up to Episode 7: The first 2 games were stories written by Yasu, who hoped someone would be able to solve the mystery after Rokkenjima was blown up. Because it was simply fiction, s/he could make anyone do whatever s/he wanted. If by 'it' you mean Battler loving Shannon in the past, it could have simply been speculation. Either way, I suggest you elaborate.
    • Even from a in-board logic, this doesn't mean much. For one thing, I don't quite remember this was said in front of the right person. For another, the way he talked about it shows clearly he didn't thought of it as highly as Yasu did. In fact, the way he thrown this around carelessly as a matter of past would have made things only worse.

  • Why do people consider kakera-theory and author-theory mutually exclusive? The existence of Earth Prime doesn't make any of the other DC universes less real.
    • Partly because a lot of the complainers don't understand author-theory. Another part is that Hachijou successfully said in red that there is only One Truth in EP 8. The other kakera can be real, I guess, but they can't be AS real. There has to be a hierarchy or we have plotholes.
      • Red Truth is context sensitive. Thus, her Red Truth could simply be saying that theirs only One Truth in that kakera.
      • Even still, there's only one truth, otherwise there could be no lies. If all worlds are equally valid, then I can just say that this kakera Person X wrote about is the truth. If all universes are real, no truth is more valid over any other truth and this entire series has been utterly pointless. What's the point in Ange's journey for the truth if any answer she's given is as satisfactory as any other answer? Also, as a significant strike against the kakera thing, EP 8 describes how the kakera began collapsing and falling into a single possibility, a single Truth, the more Erika's team burned away at the Golden Land and the illusion of the witch. The implication we've been told over and over is that the "possibilities" only exist as long as the box is closed. Once it's opened, there's only one truth. Period.
      • In that case it should be possible for all of the Red Truths to apply to a single kakera.
      • ...No. No, you've completely misunderstood the point being made.

  • According to the "Red Key" tip "evasion is impossible" in that case shouldn't tricks like Kanon was killed in this room. But, Yasu is still alive be impossible.
    • Not at all. Kanon WAS killed in this room. He ceases to exist once the character is abandoned.
      • Fair enough. However, All of the survivors have alibis! Let us include the dead as well!! In short, no kind of human or dead person on the island could have killed Kanon! Assuming that Yasu is human this means that Yasu couldn't have abandoned Kanon in that game. The only way Yasu could be rendered unable to abandon Kanon is if Yasu herself was killed. Who killed Yasu and when was she killed?
      • It would REALLY help if you included where these reds are coming from, as most reds are context-sensitive, but regardless; even if we ignore the very obvious loophole that this red statement doesn't actually say Kanon is dead, we're neglecting that 'Yasu' is not included as an identity on the gameboards proper. She may be human, but 'Yasu' is not part of the game; she's the author. If Kanon stops appearing as a character because Shannon stops pretending to be him, then Kanon is dead. He is a character who is abandoned. 'Yasu' has no alibi, but this creates no contradiction because Kanon was never 'killed' either. He is 'dead' but he was not 'murdered'. And if we read the two statements together, we have more options still, since Kanon is being read as 'killed'; Thought Kanon was killed in this room, it was done so by his author; his body still lives. It's a huge semantics game, but even without Shkanon, Red Truth has been screwing with semantics for a very long time.
      • If I may offer up some theories… Kanon is never called a 'human', isn't that correct? He is always referred to as a 'person'. Taking the red into account, it may be theorized that a 'human' is a biological structure of the species recognized as human, regardless of whether the body is in a state of life or death. The conundrum of Furudo Erika proves this fact, as she states: 'I am the visitor, the 18th human on Rokkenjima!!' This is responded to with ' Even if you do join us-There are 17 people.' The truth behind this paradox is that the human Furudo Erika is a corpse by the time she reaches Rokkenjima, and is no longer considered a 'person'. Yasu is, for any number of reasons, not considered a 'person' or a 'human'. However, note this: Krauss, Eva, Rudolph, Rosa, Natsuhi, Hideyoshi, Kyrie, Jessica, George, Battler, Maria, Genji, Gohda, Shannon, Kannon, Kumasawa, Nanjo — these are the '17 people'. However, Erika's statement proves that there are eighteen humans. Add Kinzo's corpse and hers to the count, and the number of bodies would be nineteen, right? So you have to remove one 'human' — namely, there is one among the 'people' who is not 'human'. This should prove that the red text relies on exact words — and part of that allows for 'death' to occur to non-human beings. There is no contradiction. …Although instead of going through all of that, why don't I just do this? You misinterpreted the TIP. The phrase in its original context refers to the targets of the red text, when it is used to deny a concept — not that the user is incapable of any form of deception. The meaning stands as being 'If someone were to state in red, 'witches do not exist', 'Beatrice' and all other witches would be denied and cease to exist, with no possibility for evasion or resurrection.' And if you wish to take issue with either of those — the TIP also states: "In this world, Senator Lambdadelta has placed restrictions on its use and power." So really, no matter what route, it is a non-issue.
      • Or, alternatively, the line "Even if you do join us-There are 17 people." could be taken as such: EVEN if she joins them, there are STILL only 17 people, meaning that of she doesn't join them, there are only 16. Since we have 17 characters who were supposed to be alive at the beginning of each game, the only way this could be stated in Red is if two characters are actually one person. Cue Yasu.

  • I seriously don't understand that whole Maria's diary thing in Episode 4. Is time in a paradox or something? PLEASE NOTE THAT I AM SPEAKING IN TERMS OF THE MANGA. I don't know if the exact example I used below was also used in the anime and/or VN. How could Maria write something in her diary while she is in the past, while what she is writing about took place in the future? To clarify with an example; Ange received Maria's diary, which was "completed" after Maria's death (as in, Maria can't write in it anymore). However, Ange's rejection of magic and banishment from the Mariage Sorcierge was in the future. How, then, could Maria have written the "I HATE ANGE!! I HATE MOMMA!! I HATE EVERYBODY!!" part in her diary, when it happened in the future? I haven't read the VN because I don't want to download it (personal reasons), and I don't watch it on YT a lot, so I don't know if this was already explained. I apologize if it already has.
    • I think you're confusing two separate events. When Maria was alive Ange rejected magic and was excommunicated from the Mariage Sorcierge. This is what she was referring to in her diary. Later on Ange regained faith in magic and rejoined the Mariage Sorcierge only to reject it again once the stakes refused to kill her classmates.
      • When Ange was five years old or so, she was playing witches with Maria as a game. When she realized Maria was totally serious, however, she told her that magic wasn't real and toys can't talk and stuff, and made Maria feel embarassed. The juxtaposition with Ange's high school days is Dramatic Irony.
      • Ah, yes, you guys were right. I overlooked this one part of a page saying that Ange had denied magic before, and then Maria's diary became darker after that.

  • How was Battler able to figure out Shkanon using only information from the first five games?
    • There actually is enough to figure it out by EP 4, believe it or not. It took me a while too, but what you have to pay attention to specifically is wording for all red truths. Also, notice that scenes with Kanon and Shanon conversing together with each other are never shown in front of Battle (the POV at the time, "detective" so to speak). They are shown both talking TO him at the same time, but they aren't talking to one another in front of him. This works since it can simply be Yasu talking to him as a single person, but the story just protrays two people. The Treachery of Images plays a big role here. Never trust what you see (different sprites, whatnot), heck you can't always trust what you read if it's not in red. Likewise, there's actually been hints that Kanon is an imaginary friend like figure to Shanon (compare Maria and Sakutaro, Natsuhi and Kinzo, etc). Lambdadelta's game has a BIG hint, but you'll have to reread it to catch some of it. EP 7 gives it away, but it's also a retroactive hint to where a lot of the foreshadowing from previous games is. Pay attention to Claire's funeral. When Will say "illusion to illusion" and "earth to earth", those are the major hints for which murders work and clues are hid. Notice for which murders he says "illusions to illusions" AND "earth to earth" in the same line. Which character always shows up? Also, notice what he mentions about the very first game being risky. Go back to the first twilight of the first game, pay attention to the description of the corpses, if it clicks your jaw will drop in shock. I know mine did.
      • Lots of people had the whole Shkanon thing figured out by Episode Three. It's kind of really obvious once you realize the story lies to you at every opportunity, and when you realize the stories are arranged for Shkanon to be the culprit.
      • I already check 1st game. First twilight.... I'm so stupid, I don't know what are you talking about, or maybe I'm thinking on other thing...
      • Battler never sees Shannon's corpse; he only has Hideyoshi's word to go on, who told everyone to stay back. If Battler just took a few steps forward, the whole scheme would have been ruined because Shannon's body was never there; she's alive and well, just dressed as Kanon.
      • Why would Hikeyoshi lie and say Shannon's corpse was there when it wasn't?
      • As Our Confession suggest, Yasu may have bribed him with gold. Either that or by force, remember that Kanon is there with him when he "sees" the corpse
      • Alternative theory to the one above. Hideyoshi was simply trying to be a good father andd shield George from the worst of the horrors inside the shed. This theory does not conflict with Our Confessions since the lie coerced by the bomb could have just as easily been about Rosa being the one who faked her death. No one actually checked anyone's pulse or attempted any form of autopsy to check which people were actually dead.
      • I read that,but never though it was relevant, I guess watching Shanon's corpse in the anime kinda screw that to me xD
      • Yea, this is another reason why the anime is garbage. The VN stresses the point that if Battler (or Erika, or Will, depending) doesn't see something, you cannot trust it. I guess you can't blame the anime for not retaining this point, what with the third person camera, but come on, they coulda done something.
      • However, Erika does infact see Shannon and Kanon in the same room in EP 5. One of Lambadelta's red statements says something along the lines of "Erika adds 1 to the total number of people on the island. Including Erika, there are 18 people on the island. Erika has no influence on the number of people in the previous games. Besides Erika, the number of people on the island is the same as in pervious games. i.e. This red statement barrage means that EP 1-4 had 17 people. Other red statements use "Human", "Person" and "People" interchangably. Since a human is defined as an actual physical body on the island, this rules out "personas" as they are not "humans", meaning that it is impossible for Shannon and Kanon to be the same person. Don't get me wrong, "personas" are a key part of the mystery. I just disagree as to who Yasu is the alternate persona of.
      • Even if Erika did see Shannon and Kanon, that scene isn't actually from Erika's perspective. It's from Battler's, whose perspective is stated to be unreliable in EP5. So we don't know what she actually saw.
      • Correct. Erika is the detective, but we are not seeing the scene from her point of view. This post does an excellent job of pointing out how cleverly Ryukishi played with the narrative there.
  • Ok, why in Ep7 Battler do not return to Rokkenjima?.... No Ep8 Spoilers please...
    • Because Bern doesn't want him there and as Gamemaster she controls everything.
      • You mean there's no game board reason why he wasn't there?
      • The church was described as "cut off from the kakera" and it was a world where Yasu could meet herself. Logic is pretty much a dead corpse in the basement.
      • So... just because Bern say so...ok...
    • It's possible that Battler was still mad at Rudolf.

  • Knox's 9th. It is permitted for observers to let their own conclusions and interpretations be heard. is shown to mean "people can lie". First, why does that need to be a rule in the first place? Most would assume it to be the case by default. Second, given how it's worded wouldn't it have made more sense if it had meant "People other then the detective are allowed to present theories about how the crime was committed".
    • What it means is that characters are allowed to be DECEIVED. Many pre-Knox stories had characters either correct about everything or actively lying, meaning that if something a character says is false they are either the culprit or an accomplice. Knox is calling bullshit on that.
  • The entire Yasu multiple personality deal confuses me completely. How can Shannon possibly disguise herself as Kanon while having breasts THAT big? And how can she and Beatrice be one and the same and yet two separate entities at the same time?
    • The implication is that she stuffs her bra. And Shannon and Beatrice are not separate entities, that's the point. She doesn't even have multiple personalities, she's just acting and pretending to be her imaginary friends. The tragedy is she wants to be loved but won't show anyone her real self.
    • It's been confirmed in an interview that Shannon's breasts are indeed fake.
    • In regards to the "illness," it's also implied that Yasu made those personalities to act as role models (Shannon), to be comfort (Kanon), and to help get over old sentiment (Beatrice), rather than having real DID. Also, people who have real DID are unable to get the personalities to talk to each other.
    • Simple enough. It's just as likely that this individual may not be female in the first place.
  • I can swallow Maria watching Higurashi on TV, it being a cute cameo and all... but why is there Touhou cosplay in the second ark? I know that Touhou has a big following, but why is there Touhou cosplay in Umineko?
    • The creators are friends.
    • Honestly, accurate pop culture references for the 1980s aren't something you'll find in Umineko. Aside from the Touhou references, there's also the fact that Sakutaro is partially named after the heroine of Cardcaptor Sakura, which is supposed to be Maria's favourite show even though it didn't air on television until 1998. It's really just something you'll have to take with a grain of salt.
  • Ok This has been bugging for the longest time in EP 1 Where did the extra body come from? I know Shannon stuffs her bra but other characters don't know that, so who does the body dead of Not-Shannon belong to? I would be very thankful in knowing.
    • What extra body? Battler never saw 'Shannon'. Hideyoshi and Kanon just lied.
      • Kanon's motive for lying is fairly obvious. Hideyoshi's isn't. He's too decent and arguably too chickenshit to involve himself as an accessory in a mass murder just for money. All probability, there's something there (a dummy of some sort or a bunch of rags wrapped in Shannon's clothes, with blood obscuring the rest) and he can't see very well (it's a storeroom, they can have pretty dark corners) or doesn't want to see very well. Kanon wordlessly tips him off to the ring to keep him from getting a closer look.
      • The culprit probably showed all the adults the gold, and then killed a few of them to show the rest not to mess with them. Hideyoshi was probably scared shitless when he found five adults dead in a shed, and realized that could have been him. In this scenario, all Kanon would have to do was show him the ring in his hand (maybe on his hand), and Hideyoshi would know what to do. It's also possible that the murderer didn't tell him the entire plan. He could have planned to ride out the storm until he could escape with his family and money in tow.
      • Actually there are three possible explanations for why Hideyoshi lied. Bribe: Yasu had the gold and Eva and Hideyoshi were in need of money fast, so she simply bribed them. Threat: Remember that Yasu had the entire island rigged to blow into high heavens. If someone like Genji vouched for this, it would have served as a very potent and credible threat. Finally, ignorance: Taken some of Eva's comments and actions (calling the mashed-up faces of the victims "scribbled up", leaving the safety of the group in the middle of the night to return to their room, her trying to engage Battler in methodical murder scenarios instead of being freaked out, etc.), it is not entirely impossible that she and Hideyoshi thought they were only playing along to a big prank played on Battler similar to the ones they do in EP 5 and 6, and weren't even aware that there were real murders.

  • Why is everyone giving up once they think they've found an answer that works? Take Kanon's EP 2 death for example. Everyone just goes Yasu disowns Kanon and therefore he's dead. But if that's so, who murders George and Godha? You have to realise that Kanon died in this room! doesn't specify a time. You could easily say that he is the culprit and happens to be in there at 24:00, when none are left alive. It's rather odd to not have seen this theory already...
    • Pay attention to Clair's funeral. Or rather, I'll tell you the solution: Thanks to Our Confession we know that Yasu has the servants on his/her side, so s/he could have told Nanjo and Kumasawa to hide (IIRC Beatrice didn't stated their death red until later), then make the others tell the Ushiromiyas that they were murdered, when in fact were still alive, then s/he killed them later
  • There's one massive thing that's always bothered me about this whole series. What happens when Battler finally "wins" once and for all? Does he go back to his normal life? Does he resurrect everyone?
    • Play it and find out.
      • To provide a more helpful answer than the one provided above, Battler believes that if he wins, everyone goes home safely. Whether he's correct is another matter entirely, but that is his initial motivation.
      • It's both a yes and a no. Long answer: Battler survived the Rokkenjima accident, but he went through multiple accidents before being found by Hachijo. He had amnesia as a result of all the trauma but slowly and surely, he started to remember his life as Ushiromiya Battler except he didn't feel like it was his life or his memories. Every time he tried to remember, they said something along the lines of how "his body would reject it" and at one point he remembered and attempted to commit suicide, which resulted in him permanently forced to use a wheelchair. He wrote the stories, not just to jump start his memories, but also to put his past life as Battler behind him. TL;DR: Battler does get his family and Beatrice back and live happily ever after in the Golden Land… in the world of the forgeries, written by Hachijo Tooya, who is actually Battler after the accident trying to put the past that is his—but doesn't feel like it is his— to rest.
  • In EP 5 I always wondered why Erika was so focused on Natsuhi being the culprit. She claims that it was Natsuhi, but that itself is a violation of Knox's 1st, which claims that "the criminal must be mentioned in the early part of the story, but must not be anyone whose thoughts the reader has been allowed to know." Because we've followed Natsuhi's thoughts through EP 5, doesn't that mean (at least from a meta level) that Natsuhi cannot be the culprit? Furthermore, when Battler states in Red that Natsuhi cannot be the culprit and Dlanor states that violates Knox's 2nd, couldn't he have used Knox's 1st as proof?
    • That clause of Knox's 1st wouldn't apply to this series, since no one's POV can be considered reliable, so their inner monologues can't be assumed to be their honest thoughts. The only exception would be Battler due to compliance with Knox's 9th; his thoughts are always honest (though not exactly reliable due to his overly trusting nature.)
      • Wait, that would be the original 9th, not Dlanor's version. POV and inner thoughts would fall under Dlanor Knox's 9th, including any culprit's.
  • Regarding the anime, there's one thing that always stood out in EP 1/the first arc that I never understood. In episode three of the anime, Maria says "The culprit isn't human. It's the _____ chosen by the _____." What in the world do those blanks stand for?
    • It's the sacrifices chosen by the epitaph.
  • In the visual novel, the voice of the Man from 19 Years Ago is described as being like a boy's voice that hasn't broken in the PS3 version, why did they have him being voiced by Daisuke Ono, who clearly makes him sound like an adult man?
  • Introducing the concept of "turning the chessboard around", Kyrie can't imagine any benefit to a 19th person revealing her presence yet remaining out of sight. But isn't Kinzo demonstrating those benefits by shutting everyone out? 1) Unilateral communication: he can issue statements and lay down the law without being subject to questions, argument or bargaining. 2) Generating uncertainty: the more people you keep guessing, the more likely one of them will make a reckless or desperate move.
  • When Beatrice says in Red Text, "There are five, one for each servant," it can't possibly be an absolute truth. If it weren't for preceding conversation implying she meant 'five master keys', that statement would have zero truth value. But it's not clear whether this hints that Red Text can be used for contextual truth, or it's permitted for any statement that has zero falsehood in and of itself. Either way could be used deceptively.
    • I'm not sure how much of a 'headscratcher' this is since the anime, at least, shows both contextual truths and metaphorical truths being said in Red Text. Ange (EP 3 and EP 4) objected to it on the basis that it was unfair, probably seeing this aspect of it. And, further, in the last episode of the anime (the end of EP 4), Battler solves one riddle through a 'faked death' claim by the rationale that the people had to be dead when a Red Truth claimed they were dead, but they didn't have to be dead when their bodies were initially found. Also, there was a point where Beato almost claimed something that she knew was patently false in Red Text but was stopped by Ronove before she could get more than halfway through; when Battler tried to say something he thought wholeheartedly was true, he didn't even get half-way before experiencing quite-extreme physical pain.
    • It's really not a headscratcher. The Red always has to be treated in context. In EP 6 there are entire, multiple sentence long segments that are functionally Red because they have been 'Acknowledged' in Red right afterwards. By your logic only, since only the word 'Acknowledged' was in red, only that one would would be treated as absolute truth, which is just silly.

Ubel BlattHeadscratchers/Anime & MangaUQ Holder

alternative title(s): Umineko No Naku Koro Ni
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