We were told to expect some news at 07th Live, but I don’t think anybody was expecting this! Numerous sources on Twitter are reporting what was spoken in an interview with Ryukishi at the event, including details in Haworthia and WTC5’s development, and that a new Umineko release is on the way!
This first tweet is quoting Ryukishi saying how he plans to write more for Umineko, contrasting his earlier statement on how he’s "moved on from Hinamizawa". The second and third tweet are both reporting the same info: Ryukishi is planning on releasing a new Umineko game similar in structure to Higurashi Hou next summer. He mentions that it will include a brand new Episode taking place in Umineko Chiru (Answer Arcs). He also mentions how his recent Umineko writing in a “booklet” (First and Last Gift?) was a little bit gag-focused, so he’d like to do something more serious this time. They are still deciding on what to call the new game.
Being based on Higurashi Hou, we can only assume it’s a complete collection of Umineko games for PC, so the main 8 Episodes + Tsubasa + Hane + an all new episode. Specifying that it’s set in Chiru seems to deny the possibility of it being the discarded ‘Land of the Golden Witch’, but now I’m all the more curious what it could be. I wonder if he’ll stick to the old engine or assets or base it more on the Steam release. We’ll let you know as soon as we know more!
Secondly, we have this little bit of insight into Haworthia’s development and how it connects to the next When They Cry. According to the tweets, Ryukishi is currently 8000 characters into WTC5. He talks about his planning process as ‘plotting a tree’ of ideas, and that it’s been a process of gradually pruning the branches or leaves of the tree (different ideas), and that Haworthia was created based on many of the leaves he had to prune when finalising the concept of WTC5. Some of the folkish music used in Haworthia will be featured in WTC5; because it’s a big open world, even music such as this can fit the tone of the story, he says. Ryukishi invites listeners to form their own interpretations of how Haworthia might be connected to When They Cry 5.
Lastly, he leaves us with a tease about the themes and setting of the new When They Cry. With WTC5, he wants to present a world where a concrete jungle and traditional architecture mix together. Not sure whether we should interpret this as the imagery of a shrine in Tokyo surrounded by skyscrapers being thematically significant, or if it’s set in some kind of fantasy city, or if it’s a story set across multiple time periods; your guess is as good as mine.
Now that’s a lot of exciting news to sink our teeth into! Keep in mind that these are second hand accounts and we shouldn’t take them as absolute truth, but the chances of these being fake are almost zero; at most there’s a small chance some of the details have been misreported, but I think the information is pretty reliable. Thanks to @umezawa_report and @kawatayuuhi for providing us this information, and to forumer Bernkastelle for helping me with translations. The future of 07th Expansion is looking bright!