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Higurashi Music and Sound Effects Changes / April Update

What was the April update?

In April 2019, all the Higurashi games received a major update. This update changed the Background Music (BGM) and sound effects (SE). The changes made were:

  • Some BGM/SE were replaced with completely different or new BGM/SE
  • In some cases, duplicates replaced existing BGM, resulting in less variation of BGM tracks
  • Some BGM/SE are modified or re-recorded versions of the same BGM/SE
  • Some BGM had their audio clipping and distortion fixed - but at the same time different sounding instruments or samples may have been used in the new version.
  • The game script was modified in some places to play different songs. Since the mod uses it's own script, we are unaffected by this.

More details can be seen below:

  • Music Changes: See the “Higurashi Music Changes” spreadsheet
  • Sound Effects Changes: (there is currently no list of sound effects changes)
  • Googling "April Update Higurashi" will give some forum posts with more information

What options does the mod provide to fix this issue?

Incorrectly named 'Original BGM/SE'

We are currently trying to rename "Original BGM/SE" to "GIN BGM/SE", as our BGM/SE is not identical to the original Japanese release, so the name is deceptive. However this is a work in progress, so please bear this in mind when playing the game and reading text in the installer.

We offer the GIN's BGM/SE fixes which bring the BGM/SE closer (but definitely NOT identical to) the original Japanese release and/or Pre April Update - please see the below table. This option was previously called "Original BGM/SE" or "BGM Fix".

You can switch to this BGM/SE using the F10 mod menu, under the 'Audio' tab.

If you want exactly the same BGM/SE as the original Japanese release, we would suggest you play the original Japanese release, as the mod cannot replicate that BGM/SE exactly.

Summary of GIN's BGM/SE changes

Question Arcs Answer Arcs Rei
GIN BGM BGM files have been replaced with the pre-april update BGM†, which is mostly equivalent to the original Japanese Game. BGM files have been replaced with the ones from the original Japanese game No Change to BGM/SE (as of 30/07/2022)

Note: The Hiru Console chapter will always use the Console BGM

We haven't analysed Rei yet for possible april update BGM/SE changes.
GIN BGM Timing
No Change - will play with Console timings BGM will play at times matching the original Japanese Game
GIN SE SE have been replaced with the pre-april update SE
GIN SE Timing No Change - will play with Console timings
Details † If the BGM or Sound Effect was replaced with an entirely different one, we have reverted it to the pre-april update version
† If the BGM or Sound Effect suffers from severe audio issues, and the new file is roughly the same minus the issues, we use the new version.

Why are the Answer Arcs BGM fixed differently to the Question Arcs?

Question Arcs

The Question arcs have been fixed only by file replacement. No Timing changes have been made.

This is because the question arcs BGM changes are less severe, so it was decided it wasn't worthwhile to fix the timing.

For this reason, the question arcs BGM timing does not fully match the original game.

Answer Arcs

The Answer arcs have been fixed by both file replacement and adjusting the BGM timing

This is because major changes were found which couldn't be fixed any other way, even though doing so was time consuming

Why are the Sound Effects taken from the Pre-April Update and not the original JP release?

Currently, the Sound Effects match the Pre-April Update (NOT the original JP release), and the Sound Effect timings have not been updated at all.

The two main reasons it's difficult to fix this are:

  • The sound effects are very messy in the game scripts, and would take a long time to fix
  • Our mod has changes to match the Console game, which further complicates fixing the SE

For these reasons, we have decided to leave the SE as the Pre-April Update versions.