The Manual of Style is a standard set of formatting guidelines for article writing and editing on the wiki. As this is a generic manual of style for multiple franchises, significant plot details will be spoiler-tagged.
Many articles on the wiki do not currently follow the Manual of Style as they were written long before. They should be gradually edited to bring them in line with the new standards.
This is an English language wiki, and as such all articles should be written in English. Furthermore, as all official English-translated materials are in American English, articles should follow American spelling conventions. Non-English words should only be used when relevant, such as when explaining wordplay from another language.
Writing should be clear and concise, with proper spelling and grammar throughout. Specialized jargon from outside the series should not be used unless necessary. If it is used, its meaning should be explained at the point where it is first used. An ordinary reader with a standard grasp of the language should be able to understand all of the content in an article.
Articles should be written in the third person and use past tense. Extended plot summaries and Story sections are the exception to this and should instead be written in the present tense from the perspective of unfolding story events.
The use of parentheses should be minimized. Ampersands (&) and ellipses (…) should never be used in an article unless they are part of a quote.
Terminology used should be taken from the story itself and reflect the translation choices of officially localized materials. Translated terms and quotes should always be from the most recent official translation of the relevant source material. An unofficial translation may only be used when no official translation is available, but it should be properly credited, even if it is your own translation.
In the case of terminology conflicts, the translation used in the visual novel should take first precedence, with translations from the manga or anime only used when relevant. In the case of Higurashi, this means leaving arc titles untranslated as per the visual novel releases. Page names for Higurashi arcs will leave off the -hen suffix for parity with the story arcs officially released by MangaGamer.
The main exception for the use of translated terms is with regards to the titles of the original visual novels. This allows for consistency with untranslated materials. Visual novel titles should be written in romaji instead (i.e. Umineko no Naku Koro ni Chiru instead of Umineko When They Cry: Answer Arcs).
Unofficial fan terminology should not be used, unless the term is both self-evident in meaning and referenced in official content such as interviews. "Meta-World" is allowed, but "Core Arcs" and "Rokkenjima Prime" are not, despite their widespread use.
Writing should be professional and maintain a neutral point of view. It should not contain value judgments, such as on the morality of a character or quality of an adaptation. Relevant value judgments originating from a character or Ryukishi07 may be included in an article, but it should be made clear who the value judgement is attributed to. If the reader reception is relevant to an article, it should contain citations to external reliable sources, such as a professional news or review site.
Articles such as Character pages that pertain to the story as a whole should be based on the primary source material, which is defined by us as the main story written directly by Ryukishi07. All visual novels published by 07th Expansion are treated as the primary source regardless of the order of release. For example, the Higanbana visual novel will take precedence over the manga, even though the latter was published first.
For Umineko, manga-exclusive details may also be used to support claims made in general articles, as Ryukishi07 has stated that the manga contains an official answer from him. Apart from this and matters of visual depiction, adaptation specific content should be confined to pages for the relevant adaptations.
Backstory details and other meaningful information from side stories may also be added to general articles, but they should always be signposted in the article text to indicate which story arc they are from. It is not the job of the wiki to make judgments on the canonicity of side arc content, and this allows the reader to decide by themselves whether or not to accept that information.
Fan-produced original content such as fanfiction or memes should not be part of the wiki. They should not have articles, nor should they be referenced on existing articles. An exception is when they are referenced by an official work, in which case the reference should be explained in the Trivia section.
By default, the main story of a series is defined as all of its visual novel releases. However, due to the extensive nature of the Higurashi and Umineko series, the definition is narrowed down for them. On this wiki, the Higurashi main story is defined as the visual novel releases of the Question Arcs and Kai. The Umineko main story is defined as the visual novel releases of the Question Arcs and Chiru.
Additionally, the main story of an adaptation of a series may have ad hoc definitions depending on the contexts.
Content on the wiki should have some degree of notability to the various franchises covered. When adding an article, ask yourself if a general fan of the story might care for what you are planning to write. There should also be a substantial amount of verifiable content to justify the article's existence; otherwise, it would be better to include the information as part of another article.
The category tree provides a starting point for what articles may be relevant to create. In addition, here are some additional details:
- Characters should get a page if they have a sprite. They may also get a page if they are recurring characters of significance to the story.
- All named locations that are visited in the story should get a page, unless it is a one-off scene where the location has no story significance. They may either be named in the story or as a stage in a fighting game. Unnamed locations where the specificity of the location is important (such as Featherine’s study) may also get their own pages. For Ciconia, locations with geopolitical significance should also get a page.
- The only story events that should get a page are major named story events, either in the backstory or current narrative. Relevant real world events should not get pages.
- Any terminology that is recurring and important to understand should have an article. When several terms are closely related, a single article may be used to explain the concept and redirects should be made to it for relevant terms.
- Individual episodes of an anime should have their own pages.
- Each Japanese manga volume should get its own article.
While encyclopedic websites typically have an “open spoilers” policy, the nature of When They Cry titles as mysteries and the frequency of visits made by people who have not completed the story have led us to prefer a spoiler-sensitive formatting of articles.
There are three methods of spoiler protection used on this wiki: spoiler tagging, collapsibles, and spoiler warning banners. With regards to spoiler tagging, there is no uniform policy applied to the wiki. Instead, spoiler tagging should be sensitive to the context of the particular article, taking to account what point in the story those reading the article would likely be at. Some allowance may be made for later details that are minor and not particularly unexpected.
Excessive use of spoiler tags can make articles unsightly to read, and articles should be structured to minimize the need for them. When possible, there should be a logical flow of information from early to late spoiler content, without unnecessary late story details in a section filled with early story content. The introduction of the article should be spoiler-free except when information critical to the article is considered a spoiler. One should expect to be able to browse from top to bottom and not stumble upon a major spoiler without a structural indication that the article is heading into late spoiler territory beforehand.
Spoiler tags should be signposted, that is to say they should indicate what part of the story the tagged content is a spoiler for. Signposts should preferably be written in a way that does not break the follow of the article. For example, one may write “In Requiem of Golden Witch, Spoiler text here”.
Spoiler tags should be used liberally for relevant content that is from another series (eg. Higurashi information in an Umineko article).
The “Major Spoiler Warning” banner should only be used in the event that the entire article deals with content that is regarded as a major spoiler, or when a section of an article contains a large amount of late story spoilers. In the case that the spoilers are only limited to a single large section, collapsible div tags may be used to hide that section.
Below are our specific spoiler policies for works on the wiki, which detail what counts as a major spoiler and what does not count as a spoiler. These are general guidelines for character pages and the like, though they may be tweaked to suit the article context. If a work is not listed here, please use your own discretion regarding spoiler tagging.
While interpretation plays a major role in When They Cry titles, the purpose of a wiki is to compile verifiable information. As such, all articles should only be based on content revealed in the visual novel, adaptations, official side materials, and interviews. It should be possible to find a line in these official materials that directly supports any statement made in an article. Information that is commonly accepted but is based on direct extrapolation from implicit information should be indicated as such through wording, with supporting evidence given alongside the statement or in a citation (see Citation Requirements).
The wiki is also not the place to nitpick tiny inconsistencies in plot elements or add your own technically possible alternative explanations of things already explained in the story. We accept that while the story is mostly very consistent, Ryukishi07 himself has admitted to having overlooked details before. The inclusion of these things does not add value to the wiki.
Articles should not include content from leaks, or things that have not been officially announced or published. This includes but is not limited to:
- rumors from people claiming to be associated with those working on a show or game;
- datamined sprites or text from currently-active video games that have not updated to feature said content in public builds;
- screenshots of upcoming anime episodes that do not come from affiliated websites or accounts;
- manga pages that have not yet been officially released online or published publicly.
What constitutes a leak is up to admin discretion. Generally, if it’s not from an official announcement from 07th Expansion or affiliated companies, or if it is sprites for a character or outfit that has not been introduced, then it should not appear on pages. They may not be posted or discussed in comment and Community sections either.
The title of the article should be present in its first line, and should written in bold. If this is a name or a key term, it should also contain the original Japanese and romaji alongside it using the Nihongo template. When the title term is translated differently between official works, or when its previous translation is well-known, these alternative translations should also be included in the first line using the phrases “also known as X in the manga” or “formerly known as Y”. This formatting should take precedence over italicization, that is to say the bolded title of an article should not be italicized even if it would be by another rule.
Names of published works and story arcs should be capitalized according to title capitalization conventions and italicized (eg. Umineko no Naku Koro ni, Golden Fantasia, Legend of the Golden Witch). These should be spelled out in full when first written. The italicization only applies to cases when the title is mentioned in the main body of the text, and is unnecessary when the titles are part of a heading, list, infobox, or navbox. Articles for the major When They Cry releases should have their opening sentence note that the “Naku” is officially stylized “Naku”, but this stylization should not occur anywhere else on the wiki.
All romanizations of foreign language words other than names should be italicized, though these should occur only on rare relevant occasions. Sections of text taken verbatim from the story that are not framed as quotations should also be italicized to indicate this. This step is not necessary if it is clear from other formatting cues, such as the section being composed of a block of colored text.
Besides the aforementioned examples, the use of bolding, italicization, and underlining should not be present in the content of content articles, as there is no clear way to set standards for when emphasis should be conveyed via formatting.
Visual novel releases may be shortened to exclude the “no Naku Koro ni” part of the title in subsequent mentions (eg. Umineko Chiru), with the question arcs being referred to as “Question Arcs” and the series as a whole referred to as a single word (i.e. Umineko). The eight main arcs may also be referred to by order (i.e. third arc, fourth arc), though spelling them out is generally preferred for clarity.
References to specific chapters or episodes should be written unitalicized as “Chapter XX: Name”, with standard title capitalization. These should however be mostly avoided except for spoiler tag signposting. Chapters of the visual novel are to be numbered and named according to the Chapter Select screens, with anything before the first chapter labelled "Prologue". TIPS titles should take the place of chapter titles, not arc titles, unless the TIP was only released as a standalone. For Higurashi, each chapter should be labelled "Day" for the first three arcs and "Chapter" for every arc thereafter due to inconsistencies with how they are numbered (the first three arcs skip day numbers when nothing happens, while later arcs have chapters consecutively numbered but do not follow day boundaries).
Character names should only be written in full at the start of the article or when mentioned as part of a list. Otherwise, they should be referred to by the name commonly used in the story—in most cases, this is their first name. An exception is when two characters of the same first name are referenced in the same section, in which case their full names should be used for clarity. Names should always be the English name order (<Given Name> <Family Name>).
Nicknames of characters may be used when these nicknames are used in the narration itself, though this should be balanced with uses of their proper names, especially at the start of a section. This applies to characters such as Lambdadelta (Lambda), Bernkastel (Bern), and Willard (Will). Sakutarou's name should be spelled "Sakutarou", not "Sakutaro" as Maria refers to him.
Large numbers should be written in numerals unless they are mostly made up of trailing zeroes. Any raw number less than 10 should be spelled out unless it is part of a date. Dates should be written in the “Month D, YYYY” format (eg. October 4, 1986).
The singular “they” pronoun should be used to refer to any character who is not gendered by the story or official interviews with Ryukishi07. This includes the Umineko characters Lion Ushiromiya, Zepar, and Furfur. This also applies to characters whose gender may be known later in the story, but at the currently relevant point of the story have their identity or gender withheld from the reader, such as with an unknown narrator.
She/her pronouns may be used for the Umineko character Sayo Yasuda as Ryukishi07 has referred to her in this way during interviews. For Ciconia, Miyao should be referred to with he/him pronouns while Meow should be referred to with she/her pronouns.
When there is a significant amount of information to be explained regarding a character’s gender, the gender field on their infobox should not be present, and this information should be presented in detail early in the article body.
Article links should be applied to the first occurrence of the linked article’s name (or closely linked term) in an article. They should only be linked in subsequent mentions if a later section has the term as part of a larger group where others are linked. Articles should not be linked if the link would imply a spoiler contextually, such as when linking a character page on an article where the name is not yet known to refer to an actual story character.
Links to another fandom wiki or Wikipedia should use the proper inter-wiki links instead of external links.
All videos, images, and music used on the wiki should be of a high quality, preferably of the original resolution of their source or a higher quality later official release. Media uploaded should be relevant to the wiki and in most cases should be from official material. In general, an image may be uploaded if it meets at least one of the following conditions:
- it is officially published on a magazine (ex. Newtype and Megami);
- it is in an official art-book or its cover;
- it is in an official game itself (ex. Computer Graphics);
- it is included in manga, anime, or other adaptations in some shape or form (ex. bonus illustrations).
Translated text in uploaded media should be of the official release when available. When unavailable, the images used should have their text removed, such as by disabling subtitles or whiting out manga speech bubbles. Media with fan-made translations should not be uploaded, though it is permissible to add a credited fan-translation in the article text for side materials, lyrics, and interviews.
The wiki should not function as a repository for reading the manga. Full pages should only be gallery compiled in the case of covers, colored pages, afterwords, character introductions, and omake. Other pages from the manga may be uploaded on a case by case basis when they add illustrative value to an article, but they should not be added to gallery pages
Fan-made media (when necessary) and real life photographs should be used with permission from their creator or be under a free license. Attribution should be given in the image file description as well as caption.
While a lot of official materials can be considered NSFW, they are allowed outside main pages with the following exceptions:
- Explicit depictions of genitals, female breasts, sexual intercourse, or anything too obscene are NOT allowed;
- Depictions of anatomically prepubescent characters with revealing outfit are NOT allowed.
If a sprite from an official game itself violates these rules, it shall be linked directly from the corresponding subpage without being embedded to the page itself. Other types of images that violate these rules are not allowed on the wiki at all.
Media from the visual novel and its ports should retain their original filenames to make them easier to search for when referencing the script. In the event of filename conflicts, the abbreviated source name (eg. Cico) should be appended to the start of the filename.
Media from other sources (anime, manga, official website) should be labelled as such, with additional search-relevant descriptors for the content. Try to follow the naming convention of previous images of the same type, if one exists. When additional information is necessary, this should be in the description of the uploaded file.
If a file already exists but is misnamed, please notify the staff instead of uploading a duplicate file by yourself. If a file exists in poor quality, please notify the staff first before uploading the new file so that the filename will not be taken up by the inappropriate file.
All uploaded media should be directly or indirectly classified under their respective subcategories in Category:Media. Due to their massive quantity, character sprites, backgrounds, and CGs do not need to be individually categorized there, but should instead be placed in galleries on the subpages of their respective articles, and the gallery pages then added to the relevant subcategories.
If information in an article does not come from the story content, it should be cited according to our citation style guide. Such information should come from a reliable source, such as an interview, a tweet from a relevant staff twitter account (07th Expansion, publishers, or translation teams), or a professional news website. Informal sources such as recounts from a panel are discouraged, and judgement should be exercised regarding their use.
For story content, evidence for a nontrivial claim should preferably be provided as part of the article itself. For example, a statement that a character behaves in a particular way towards another character may be followed by an example supporting this, along with the relevant story arc and chapter. Citations should only be used when this information does not flow naturally with the writing of the section. Pages or sections describing “solutions” should be held to a higher standard of evidence, and claims within them should always be formally cited.
Any unofficial translation of content (fan translated arcs, interviews etc.) used on the wiki should be credited to the translator. This applies also to translations made by yourself. Credit should be given both at the start of the article or section and as a citation with an external link. This is not necessary for the translation of short Japanese phrases such as game titles.
Articles on the wiki will use our own internal citation style for convenience. The evidence line may be omitted for story content citations if it can be deduced from the context or if there are numerous lines supporting the claim in the chapter. It should be included if there is a layer of interpretation involved.
|Visual Novel||Arc Title Chapter XX: Chapter Title. Character Name: “Line said by character (or exposition)” (Additional notes on visual content or context.)|
|Manga Adaptation||Arc Title (manga) Chapter XX: Chapter Title. Character Name: “Line said by character (or exposition or visual description)” (Additional notes on visual content or context.)|
|Anime Adaptation||Arc Title (YYYY anime) Episode XX: Episode Title. Character Name: “Line said by character (or narration or visual description)” (Additional notes on visual content or context.)|
|Official Profile||Arc Title Character/Organization Name's Profile
Character/Organization Name's Website Profile <URL with external link if not in-game>
|Interview||[[Interview Name]] Person: “Interview statement”
Add the translation of the interview to the wiki if not already present.
|Supplementary Book||[[Book Name]] Page Number. “Statement”|
|Tweets||<Descriptive account name> Twitter Account <URL with external link>
(eg. Official MangaGamer Twitter Account)
|Websites||"Article name" on Website Name <URL with external link>
"Article name" on <descriptive website name> <URL with external link>
|Steam Page||<Announcement name> on the Game Title Steam Page <URL with external link>|
References in this Article
- Say It In Red! An Interview with Ryukishi07 Ryukishi07: "By no means is the manga version a individual interpretation. It is an official answer from me, Ryukishi07."
- Answer to the Golden Witch Ryukishi07: "If we are talking about the storm, if there is one thing that does not fit into a mystery in Umineko and can clearly be identified as fantasy, there is one kernel part, there is not even a thought spent on getting wet in the rain. It is one part that I cut right out of that world."
- Answer to the Golden Witch Ryukishi07: “I think that is something which she herself wondered about.” (“she herself” is translated from “彼女自身/kanojo jishin”)
- Answer to the Golden Witch Ryukishi07: “Because Umineko is “the story of a single girl who arrived at that point because she imagined an incident because of the love and madness in herself”…” (“girl” is translated from “少女/shoujo”)