Umineko no Naku Koro ni Question Arcs, also referred to as simply Umineko no Naku Koro ni (うみねこのなく頃に, lit. When the Seagulls Cry), is the first half of the Umineko no Naku Koro ni series and contains Episodes 1 to 4 of the story. It is also referred to as When They Cry 3 in the overall When They Cry franchise.
The original releases of Umineko no Naku Koro ni Question Arcs took place from August 17, 2007 to December 29, 2008, and were translated by The Witch Hunt. Umineko Question Arcs was later officially released worldwide in English as Umineko When They Cry Question Arcs by MangaGamer in collaboration with Witch Hunt on July 8, 2016. The English edition contains all four question arcs and is playable on Windows, Mac, and Linux systems. It may be purchased on MangaGamer, Steam, or GOG.
Episode 1: Legend of the Golden Witch
The first episode of Umineko introduces the reader to the Ushiromiya family and the setting of Rokkenjima. The reader is familiarized with the island's 18 residents (consisting of the Ushiromiya family and servants) as well as the legend of the Golden Witch, Beatrice. As the story progresses, people on the island are murdered, and the family is taunted by letters that claim to be from the witch Beatrice, who takes responsibility for the murders and intends to take back everything of the Ushiromiya family.
Episode 2: Turn of the Golden Witch
Following the events of the first episode, this episode introduces the meta-world, a higher plane where Battler is locked into a battle of twisted logic with the witch Beatrice as the murders on the island repeat in a different way. Beatrice arrives on the island as its 19th resident, and fantastical elements are introduced into the story. The chapter also focuses on George and Jessica's relationships with the Ushiromiya family servants, Shannon and Kanon.
Episode 3: Banquet of the Golden Witch
The third episode continues the repeating murders, with a special focus on Eva, Kinzo's first daughter. Unlike the first two chapters, the adults of the Ushiromiya family make a serious attempt to solve the riddle of the epitaph. Eva succeeds in this task and finds the gold, but a witch persona of Eva continues to carry out the murders in Beatrice's name.
Episode 4: Alliance of the Golden Witch
This chapter introduces Battler's sister Ange as a secondary protagonist. Ange had been absent from the 1986 family conference and was taken in by the only survivor of the incident, Eva. It has a shifting focus of events, showing readers Ange's life in the aftermath of the incident and exploring her relationship with Maria and magic through Maria's diary. The Ange of 1998 sets out on a journey to uncover the truth of Rokkenjima, while the events on Beatrice's gameboard repeat for the fourth time.
- Main article: Umineko: When They Cry (anime)
- Digital edition of Umineko on MangaGamer's store page
- Physical edition of Umineko on MangaGamer's store page
- Digital edition of Umineko on Steam
- Digital edition of Umineko on GOG