Steam had a long history of shunning visual novels, until one day they pissed off the wrong crowd; and so we now have wonderful Southeast Asian shovelwares scripted in XML, and a diverse array of Western Ren'py pretentiousness. But of course, these are only a side effect. Let's have a look into the most common reasons you should not buy visual novels on Steam, nor from any Western store.
The common man just wants to play what he plays. He buys or otherwise obtains things from the first place he runs across, but that first place is now almost always Steam. However, Steam ports of novels are often nothing like their original counterparts. Inaccurate and subversive translations, badly-approximated engine ports, unwanted graphical overhauls, and most importantly, removed content are things you can regularly expect.
You can skip this part and go straight to the MangaGamer slander. Seriously.
Undoubtedly the most relevant localizer of novels these days, SekaiProject has brought you Steam releases of Clannad, Planetarian, Narcissu 1st and 2nd, Muv-Luv, Nekopara, and... the entire Sakura cock tease series. Admittedly, SekaiProject is a good group, and their releases seem fine, although do be warned that the Steam version of Narcissu lacks Haeleth's British English translation of the first novel. Insani (gp32) and Haeleth had collaborated to make two separate English translations for the Voiced and Unvoiced versions of the novel, respectively. Author Tomo Kataoka wanted bring two different experiences in the two versions, and the translators took that a step further. Agilis removed Haeleth's translation (Unvoiced comparison 1, Comparison 2) for the Steam release of his Narcissu 1st and 2nd compilation, as Haeleth has been missing from the internet for over a decade and no permission can be given. There is a non-Steam version of the compilation, but most importantly, you can still get the original Insani/Haeleth ONScripter-EN release of the first novel from their site. Agilis' Narcissu 1st and 2nd compilation is a port of both novels to PONScripter, which has a larger RAM footprint. Basically, the Steam release of Narcissu consists of fan-translations, the compilation is fanmade, its non-Steam version is fine... but, the Steam version is still inferior. Besides, Narcissu is free even on Steam; there is no reason to download it from there.
And here we are, having arrived at the main focus of this article, on the Great Satan of visual novel localization.
Let's look at the FUNK:
The missing soundtrack is particularly unforgivable, comparing to the French translator of Higurashi (one man!) going so far as to get the licenses to all of the music, re-rip the severely-clipped MIDI tracks by himself, and include the minigames; not to mention translating the ENTIRE game by himself, in PONScripter (which was needed for French text). This is the greatest example of fans always going above and beyond, and companies falling short.
Yes thank you MangaGamer please fix your mistakes thanks for the Steam release oh no oh God no you're making it worse again ah SHIT
Something notable is that these new MangaGamer releases are called Higurashi When They Cry Hou, but they're not related to Hou at all. The real Higurashi Hou from 07th Expansion runs on NScripter, features new graphical save menus from Umineko, contains original sprites with some added new ones drawn by Ryukishi07 in his original style, and includes new arcs with new characters also drawn in the orignal style. But the West never got a real translation of that. Now and forever, Death to MangaGamer.
Of course, all of your favorite visual novels have to be licensed and sold in the West. They have to be remade. You have to pay for them. Pay us for them.
Don't buy from MangaGamer. Really, just don't.
Thanks to 07th Expansion and only that, MangaGamer is recognized as a legitimate localization company. Until recently, you could not even go on their website without being bombarded by literal porn, and we're supposed to take these kikes seriously and give them money for the one good franchise they ever touched. By the way, Ciconia no Naku Koro Ni is being handled by MangaGamer. Runs in PONScripter. Higurashi Rei has been confirmed to be in the works. A certain someone on Twitter is trying to get them to rerelease Higanbana. Random retards have been requesting they localize Fate stay/night and Mahoutsukai no Yoru. Please, the lot of you, fall into Hell.