Sunday, July 14, 2013

Possible Highschool of the Dead News

First of all, thank you to Hammiam for bringing this to my attention.

I just wanted to give you my opinion on this so it doesn't get misconstrued and I hopefully don't get bombarded with questions. Go ahead and read this if you haven't already and please read the rest of this post after:

I am not considering this real news. It certainly is NOT an official announcement of any kind. There are no official sources for some points (those about Daisuke Sato's health and the earthquake are true and appeared in his recent interview for the FCE volumes). To save time, I'm going to copy what I said in a comment in another post:

Some of the things on that list I knew from the Daisuke Sato interview in the new FCE volumes. Some of it is logical conclusion. A few points (namely the ones that talk about what they're doing to work towards a return), though, I simply can't accept as fact without viable sources. I want to believe it, but this has to fall in the likely-but-unverifiable category. I believe that this person did research and dug up some facts, but then connected them through his own inferences and speculation.

There is too much here that goes beyond any official word I have heard for me to treat this as real news. I'll keep my eyes and ears open, and hopefully we can start confirming some of these points. I think the real proof will come in an announcement when the next chapter is ready.

The part about buying new chapters is absolutely true and actually makes me suspect someone under Yen Press' payroll is behind this, in which case it would be absolutely true. We'll see!

I know this won't do much good, but PLEASE don't go around the internet touting this as absolute fact. This is interesting and very believable, but it's a lot like investigative journalism: When you take some disjointed facts and connect the dots in a logical way, people tend to believe it.

So there you have it. I will, at the very least, use this information as a sort of checklist when I look for official, source-supported info in the future. Until then, buy the manga to support the authors, be happy that someone somewhere is doing something, and keep checking back for more information.


  1. The majority of this is substantiated, at lest the first half. And the rest seems plausible based on other evidence.

    In the interview that was included in the bonus color version of Act29, Daisuke Sato does credit the earthquake and his hospitalizaton as reasons why he couldn't or shouldn't write. But given the timing of the HOTD hiatus, he may have already stopped before any of that happened.

    In that same interview he states that Shouji Sato's trip to AnimagiC opened his eyes to the popularity of HOTD around the world. Daisuke now feels he is a popular author around the world, this is likely the only reason he started writing HOTD again. Some of those German fans at AnimagiC who were in HOTD cosplay appear in the last pages of the Japanese release of Vol 6 FCE.

    It is the fans that brought HOTD back from the dead, and the fans that can keep it going, provided its profitable and Daisuke doesn't get board with it again.

    The 4th point about chapter 31 on, is talking about Daisuke then ends with "As stated last year at the anime convention in Germany". Daisuke was not at AnimagiC, Shouji was, and Shouji never spoke for Daisuke, and actually made it sound like he didn't know what the status was in regards to the story. Shouji simply said he was preparing by drawing weapons and vehicles, but how that has anything to do with Daisuke is truly questionable.

    Putting one chapter (Act 30) out there as a test makes sense, but how this test all hinges on sales in the US doesn't. Sales in Japan, and the licensing deals with many other countries all play into it. In the Daisuke interview he talks about its popularity around the world and mentions countries, but I don't recall the US or America being mentioned.

    Shouji going back to Fire Fire Fire so he can get used to working on multiple stories seems really odd. The primary reason an artist would do other work would be to make a living. If Daisuke isn't writing HOTD Shouji can't draw it, So Shouji needs to do other things like Triage X and Fire Fire Fire.

    It is unfortunate the author didn't give his sources for the last few points. Are we to assume he had contact with Kadokawa, Yen Press or the Satos?

    An official translation of the "Daiske Sato Long Interview" would be really nice.


    1. Thank you. I didn't have the time or patience to give it such a thorough debunking. I commend your work, but I have one issue.

      In my opinion, the simple fact that Fujimi Shobo agreed to the simultaneous releases proves that plays a significant role in the continuation of the series, and thus sales of the individual chapters will factor into the series' future.

      Just think about it: Dragon Age costs about $7 (US) in Japan and has about 30 chapters, which comes out to roughly $.23 per chapter. Yen Press charged $2 for a single chapter, meaning if Fujimi Shobo took just a 9% cut of the overall sales, they already make more from it than they do in the print version.

      Of course, one series isn't going to be a drop in the ocean that is Kadokawa's annual profits, but they could be using this as an experiment before adding more. Not only are they earning more per chapter, they are expanding their market and crippling the scanlation industry by leaving legal action against manga sharing in the hands of the US publishers.

      I'm not saying "Joey" necessarily knows what he's talking about, but you can't overlook the fact that the only countries in the world that have had a legal version of c30 are Japan and the US.

    2. Oh and the Daisuke Sato interview should be translated (hopefully) in the second Color Omnibus by Yen Press, but that's set for release in October of this year. By then, the info could be pointless.

    3. Good point. The electronic version of Act 30 is only available to people who indicate their locality as being in the US or Canada. And it is cool to think those who do purchase it that way can have that big of an impact (comparatively).

      Does Apple still take 30% of iBooks sales? :-(

      I just can't imagine the licenser(s) would be so short sited as to only consider the revenue of the electronic version of Act 30, given the popularity of HOTD manga and anime in other countries. Those must play into the potential profit earned given both properties are licensed in many other countries. Maybe not the latest act yet, but much of the rest of it.

      As an example, the color versions of Volume 5 - 7 are not yet available in English in the US (we may get it in December). But translated versions are or will soon be available in France and Germany, and I suspect other countries. The OVA of the anime is available for purchase in the UK but not in the US.

      It was interesting to learn that HighSchool of the Dead is Sentai Filmworks highest selling anime title. And didn't they offered a legal english subtitled version when it aired in Japan? And relicense it to Netflix. Sentai must be asking for more.

      I don't mean to make this sound like a sales pitch, its not. And I don't know the royalty deals Shouji and Daisuke may have made. But there are numerous legally licensed HOTD products available around the world that fans could purchase, showing their support for HOTD.

      Sad to think most of our money goes to DHL just to ship the stuff from Japan.

    4. This is what I received from Amazon a while back in regards to the Color Omnibus Vol 2.

      We're writing about the order you placed on November 30, 2012. Unfortunately, the release date for the item(s) listed below has changed, and we need to provide you with a new delivery estimate based on the new release date:

      Daisuke Sato, Shouji Sato "Highschool of the Dead Color Omnibus, Vol. 2"
      Estimated arrival date: December 23, 2013 - December 30, 2013

    5. I wouldn't go so far as to say the US online version of the chapter is the only factor in deciding what to do with the series, but it does make sense that they would be more likely to keep publishing new chapters of an old series if they were seeing profits in two markets simultaneously. It's not so much about what worldwide sales are like, it's about deciding if they should take up 34 pages a month when they could begin a new series that won't go on long hiatuses and could turn out much more popular in the long run.

      I don't think Sentai had anything to do with the simulcast. That was Anime Network.

      The last time I looked on the Yen Press site (several months ago) it said the omnibus was coming out in October. I guess that changed.

    6. I initially thought it was kinda iffy the survival of HotD would hinge on US sales. Simul-release or not, you''d think the Japanese market ought to be their main concern whereas foreign receipts are just cherry on top (no matter how big that cherry is).

      While it does make sense that Fujimi Shobo would want to be sure a manga like HotD which has a high tendency to go on hiatus can still maintain popularity, as Turambar said they could reserve the 30+ pages for a new series than to keep running a series that isn't popular anymore, but what I don't get is why the difference in treatment compared to other mangas? So what HotD is popular overseas? That should have little bearing (if at all) on the fact that it's a Japanese manga for the Japanese audience. They shouldn't have to justify it based on terms as dictated by Yen Press/Kadokawa.

    7. Any news on a digital (scanlated) version of Vol. 7? All I can find are volumes 1-6 (uncencored) and single chapters 26-29 (censored).

      I think you mentioned, that either you or HOTDcups would upload volume 7 someday. Any progress on that? (Seems like we won't get Color Omnibus Vol. 2 so soon...)

    8. [Sorry for double-posting, I replied to the wrong person at my first attempt.]

      Any news on a digital (scanlated) version of Vol. 7? All I can find are volumes 1-6 (uncencored) and single chapters 26-29 (censored).

      I think you mentioned, that either you or HOTDcups would upload volume 7 someday. Any progress on that? (Seems like we won't get Color Omnibus Vol. 2 so soon...)

  2. Pecan someone please tell me what happens in is triage x chapter? I know I been asking the same things, it's just I don't have money to fix my computer I can't open the file with a tablet, so please tell what happens on this triage x, thank you

  3. Why am I getting the feeling that this series is gonna end with vol.8?

  4. They don't make money if it gets licensed aboard you know that right? The only person who makes any money is the publisher who sells the license that's about it. To start with mangaka and authors barely make a decent living. Not all of them are very rich. Its rare to see someone get Index or One Piece status. Most of the money goes to the publisher. Authors/Artist don't see a time when the license gets sold aboard. So if you really want to support a series you'd buy the original Japanese print.

    It sounds somewhat farfetched. Its a zombie apocalypse not a nuclear meltdown... The heart disease thing, I completely understand. Authors in japan really have a high fatality rate. If they see Digital as a loss, why would they sell it at all? Completely counter-intuitive. The reason someone would want digital is because digital is cheaper, you don't need to wait.

    1. The fact that the authors probably get nothing for new chapters released simultaneously overseas is exactly why overseas digital sales matter. It's the publisher who decides if and for how long the series returns.

      I would be surprised if Daisuke and Shouji don't get any royalties whatsoever for their copyrighted material that sells outside of Japan. If Japan's industry is anything like the US (which it is), then they get something out of it, small as it may be.

      The thing about the nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima plant comes from Daisuke Sato himself. If you look at pictures, the area around the plant looked pretty post-apocalyptic, regardless of the lack of undead corpses. It's either true or he is lying.

  5. Is Daisuke Sato getting paid to write new HOTD content?
    Is Shouji getting paid to Illustrate it?
    What enticed Daisuke into writing more content?

    I choose to believe they are being paid and may even be paid more than they were for the earlier stuff because it is more popular. And licensing outside Japan has added immensely to the profitability of this property, which Daisuke and Shouji almost certainly own. That out-of-country popularity/profitability may be the only reason Act 30 happened. So even if it is indirect, they do get something.

    Everyone involved needs this to be profitable for it to all work. Yes, the publishers, broadcasters and producers see more of the revenue, but they also take the financial risk fronting the money to print the content, translate it, produce the anime, dub it later in other countries, produce the Blu Ray/DVD, broadcast it in Japan, pay the electronic distribution fees etc, build and support the infrastructure for electronic delivery. Then hope it sells, and isn't immediately pirated, in whatever medium/market they are selling through.

    If sending them money directly doesn't work as the best way to support these two guys, I do agree that the most direct way to support them is to purchase the content as close to the source as possible. I suspect the HOTD products that Shouji lists on his own web site represent the stuff he sees direct compensation from. But I think we are preaching to the choir here, as its likely everyone who has posted on this particular thread has quite a collection of HOTD stuff imported from Japan.


    1. I just know, as someone who is involved in the publishing market and trying to get my own material published, that even an established writer or artist can't get new material published if the publisher doesn't want to do it. That's why they tell new authors not to start on a sequel to a novel until the publisher asks for one.

      While I think buying the Japanese manga is good, I don't think it's a good idea to create the impression that that's the only way to support the creators. A lot of people out there don't have the money to spend $30 on a single manga volume (with shipping), but they do have enough to spend $2 each month or every other month on an official English chapter.

      Buying the manga from Japan is a great way to support the creators, but if you can't afford that there's no reason why you shouldn't support the series and buy the official chapters. I certainly do not in any way support reading a pirated version of the official chapters.

    2. Exactly, simply buy it from wherever its officially available in your area.

      There is something to be said about the physicality of printed material but we all know that printed books are in decline. And with it publishers will have to evolve or fade away. Its actually surprising that more manga has gone electronic and then exclusively electronic.

      Its already possible for people to self publish their own work electronically, and make it available in many countries at the same time. Just an Example: You could publish your own book or manga through iBooks and make it available in more than 50 countries, including Japan. Or if you don't want to pay the Apple Tax, use Adobe DPS to create an App then distribute the manga through your own App.

      As electronic book reading grows in popularity its not a stretch to think that Shouji and Daisuke couldn't just handle it all on their own. Wouldn't that be a kicker, if they pulled it all from FujimiShobo and simply self published HOTD directly through iBooks, Google's Book Store, Adobe DPS or something else.


    3. It would be nice to see them go independent, but I wouldn't be crazy about HOTD going exclusively online. Just like a lot of scanlation groups, online publishers edit pages to the point where detail is lost in order to make it look sharper on a computer or tablet screen. I wasn't happy with how Fujimi Shobo handled Takeda's art in Maken-Ki! Kai!!, which is in an online magazine.

      On the other hand, the Fire Fire Fire sequel was done pretty well by its online publisher, so maybe things are improving.

  6. correction:

    Its actually surprising that more manga hasn't gone electronic and then exclusively electronic.

    1. My guess is it's a lot like why books haven't done it. It's still a limited market as, believe it or not, most people still lack either a device to read them on or the means with which to download them. Japan is known for technology, but like the rest of the world it has poverty.

      Then you have to take into account the paper industry, printing industry, publishers, and the mangaka themselves who would all take major pay cuts.

    2. Anyone still think digital delivery isn't the way its going?

      Ironically those scanning original Japanese printed art and translating it into english, are only around due to digital delivery.

    3. Is that links to Apple's App Store and GooglePlay on Shouji's web site. Links to browser based manga viewers? Holy smokes, its already begun.

      Now lets bring on full digital distribution to the world!

      Yea, yea, I see the links to Amazon too .....

  7. After reading everything posted here, I can assume that, in the end, money is what matters. Sad but true but then the author and artist needs to make a living too. All I'm hoping for is to see HOTD return with a hopefully proper ending unlike several zombie movies that don't have a proper ending or the ending is unsatisfying to the fans. I'm also hoping for another chapter before 2013 ends. Is that even possible?

  8. > The next chapters of H.O.T.D. are VERY crucial on deciding if the series will end with an 8th Volume or continue when they go on sale. If you American H.O.T.D. fans don't buy digital copies they'll take it as a sign of losing interest and the series will end prematurely...So don't go bitching and whining if that does happen. It'll be your fault for not supporting the creators.

    *Sigh* Call it a vicious cycle, but while on one hand I realize this to be true, on the other hand the opposite also stands true - I don't want to waste my money supporting something that has significant potential to be axed/rush-ended, in which case such unsatisfactory content wouldn't be worth the money spent, especially in this age where free scanlations often outclass the "official" translations. Even if the reasons are true, the hiatus IS to blame for said loss of interest if any.

    I can only buy the remaining volumes (I only have 3) if and only if I know for sure it's not going to be UxU'd. Well, good luck to the brothers, then.

  9. Well, if it makes any HOTD fan feel better, the anime was suppose to continue starting fall. As a weekly customer at my local B&N, it came to my attention that volumes 2-7 were posted in a well hid place in the manga section. 1 was obviously missing. probably some newbie who doesn't even know what HOTD is took it by "mistake" my point is, HOTD franchise started coming out, so lets hope for the best...