Jump to content

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Do you like the recent localizations of DQ?  

55 members have voted

You do not have permission to vote in this poll, or see the poll results. Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

Recommended Posts

Well, I would call myself a "purist", when it comes to translation, though I haven't heard the term being used all that frequently lately. Not only do I consider it disrespectful to the original writers to try and "improve" upon the game with translations. The original game does have some puns, and a lighthearted mood for the most part, But it is balanced. When they are used they are funny. I don't recall anything ever ruining a mood. The puns are used sparingly, so they mean more (they are funnier) when you run into them.

 

Overall, changing names not only loses the oringal intended meaning for the names (which are almost always Western anyways) but it also just makes it hard to hold a conversation when there are multiple different names for the same person or place.

 

I find it amazing that in this day and age where even some of the kid aimed Japanese anime dubs at least make mention of Japanese names, that Dragon Quest is localized the same way such animation was dealt with in the 70's and 80's.

 

Now, there is a place for looser translations when a strict translation won't get the mood or the meaning across. "Spiked Hare" is a fine translation for a monster based on a completely unrelated common Japanese phrase.

 

Lastly, spells. The fire spell "Mera" is based off the sound of something burning. But on the other hand, the freezing spell, "Hyado" is based on the verb hiyasu 冷やす (to cool something down). The spell known as Return, or Zoom, Rula is probably based off the English word "Ruler" since it took you back to the castle of the king in the original game. The spell used to waken comrades "Zameha" is probably based of "Mezameru" 目覚める (to awake). So how should these be translated? As I said, I'm a purist, and while I haven't been asking around, I imagine it isn't necessarily obvious to the average player what the origin of a spell name is. So myself, I would leave them as is. But I don't think the latest translation was completely offtrack in how it localized many of the spells. Some of them I think the older translation was closer in spirit and made more sense, but the fundamental strategy isn't on too shaky of ground.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I find it amazing that in this day and age where even some of the kid aimed Japanese anime dubs at least make mention of Japanese names, that Dragon Quest is localized the same way such animation was dealt with in the 70's and 80's.

 

 

I blame Rocket Slime, personally. DQ8's translation was "okay". Name changes were abundant, but the script was competently translated and pretty close tonally to the original release. Then Rocket Slime came out and they had fun with the translation and much of the problems that i feel exist in the releases today began to with that game. And that's fine for a spin off like RS. However, some executives must have seen the praise for it and felt that they should carry over to every DQ.

 

And that is where we're at today

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have several problems with the new translations. For me, it smacks of translators thinking they're more clever writers than the original creators. You'd never have this kind of disrespect for the source material with say, Final Fantasy.

 

This is a point of contention. They are clever writers. Honestly. We all like Horii, but all of Plus Alpha's little details and keeping characters fresh really is excellent. You can tell they're having fun. I guess it's all about context. Granted I have my criticisms, but I've found Plus Alpha's stuff to be far beyond the localization for your typical Square Enix game. In fact, I recently played FF IV PSP and thought everyone ran together. 8-4's approach might be more your style, but I found myself speeding through the prison and sage scenarios because they were so dry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have several problems with the new translations. For me, it smacks of translators thinking they're more clever writers than the original creators. You'd never have this kind of disrespect for the source material with say, Final Fantasy.

 

This is a point of contention. They are clever writers. Honestly. We all like Horii, but all of Plus Alpha's little details and keeping characters fresh really is excellent. You can tell they're having fun. I guess it's all about context. Granted I have my criticisms, but I've found Plus Alpha's stuff to be far beyond the localization for your typical Square Enix game. In fact, I recently played FF IV PSP and thought everyone ran together. 8-4's approach might be more your style, but I found myself speeding through the prison and sage scenarios because they were so dry.

 

Its definitely going to be opinion based, but the sad fact is, these changes have caused a kind of division in the once happy DQ community. I won't deny many people like the style Plus Alpha came up with. But many others dislike it. And I can see where they're coming from. Even if I clamied to be okay with the accents (which I'm not), it changes the feeling you're suppose to get from the character. Yangus in the Japanese version of the PS2 game is obviously suppose to be your 'brute with a good heart' who is also quick tempered and easy to surprise. But there's more to him than that, a second layer that doesn't translate in words, but in action. He fits a very common stereotype in Anime, mainly Shonen Anime. On the flip side however, that extra 'layer' of his personality was kind of hidden in the western release. Instead it was replaced by a thick cockney acent and tons of excess dialogue. Scenes in the Japanese version which would have features no dialogue and instead focused on his visual reactions were 'translated' into the western version with 'COR BLIMEY' or 'LOVE A DUCK' and other such nonsense.

 

My point? While its obvious some things won't fully translate, the 'Honeywood' translation for DQVIII and later the Plus Alpha translations went too far and 'covered up' some things that could have been recognized, even by a western audience. I'd like to point out another accent filled game, Chrono Cross. While this game featured a number of accents for indavidual characters, the original core script was left intact as much as possible, as Honeywood worked directly with Masato Kano to decide how to change the dialogue as needed. This doesn't seem to be the case with the DQ localizations. Instead, most conflicts or things that were hard to translate seem to be blazently thrown out and replaced with British idoms or nonsense. And in the case of DQIV DS, Party Chat and some dialogue was removed completely.

 

To add to this, many of the changes we did get in DQVIII, IV and V seemed blatantly aimed at kids. While many won't care, as Video Games are stil lseen as a pastime for kids in America, we must remember this is Dragon Quest. A series which became popular with all ages in Japan. Why does such a series, with sexual innuendos, Puff Puffs and even some brief nudity, instead be censored or 'altered' to appeal to kids? As someone already said above, if major series like Final Fantasy, Persona or Xenogears had this happen to them, the fans would be having a fit. So why has it become acceptable in Dragon Quest?

 

Anyway, my two cents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have several problems with the new translations. For me, it smacks of translators thinking they're more clever writers than the original creators. You'd never have this kind of disrespect for the source material with say, Final Fantasy.

 

This is a point of contention. They are clever writers. Honestly. We all like Horii, but all of Plus Alpha's little details and keeping characters fresh really is excellent. You can tell they're having fun. I guess it's all about context. Granted I have my criticisms, but I've found Plus Alpha's stuff to be far beyond the localization for your typical Square Enix game. In fact, I recently played FF IV PSP and thought everyone ran together. 8-4's approach might be more your style, but I found myself speeding through the prison and sage scenarios because they were so dry.

 

Its definitely going to be opinion based, but the sad fact is, these changes have caused a kind of division in the once happy DQ community. I won't deny many people like the style Plus Alpha came up with. But many others dislike it. And I can see where they're coming from. Even if I clamied to be okay with the accents (which I'm not), it changes the feeling you're suppose to get from the character. Yangus in the Japanese version of the PS2 game is obviously suppose to be your 'brute with a good heart' who is also quick tempered and easy to surprise. But there's more to him than that, a second layer that doesn't translate in words, but in action. He fits a very common stereotype in Anime, mainly Shonen Anime. On the flip side however, that extra 'layer' of his personality was kind of hidden in the western release. Instead it was replaced by a thick cockney acent and tons of excess dialogue. Scenes in the Japanese version which would have features no dialogue and instead focused on his visual reactions were 'translated' into the western version with 'COR BLIMEY' or 'LOVE A DUCK' and other such nonsense.

 

My point? While its obvious some things won't fully translate, the 'Honeywood' translation for DQVIII and later the Plus Alpha translations went too far and 'covered up' some things that could have been recognized, even by a western audience. I'd like to point out another accent filled game, Chrono Cross. While this game featured a number of accents for indavidual characters, the original core script was left intact as much as possible, as Honeywood worked directly with Masato Kano to decide how to change the dialogue as needed. This doesn't seem to be the case with the DQ localizations. Instead, most conflicts or things that were hard to translate seem to be blazently thrown out and replaced with British idoms or nonsense. And in the case of DQIV DS, Party Chat and some dialogue was removed completely.

 

To add to this, many of the changes we did get in DQVIII, IV and V seemed blatantly aimed at kids. While many won't care, as Video Games are stil lseen as a pastime for kids in America, we must remember this is Dragon Quest. A series which became popular with all ages in Japan. Why does such a series, with sexual innuendos, Puff Puffs and even some brief nudity, instead be censored or 'altered' to appeal to kids? As someone already said above, if major series like Final Fantasy, Persona or Xenogears had this happen to them, the fans would be having a fit. So why has it become acceptable in Dragon Quest?

 

Anyway, my two cents.

 

Agreed. I will uploading a vid soon explaining my views on this subject. But I'll answer your question.

 

People say that in order for the game to be successful in the States they had to make these changes to future games. Otherwise it would never have gotten popular. While its true the series wasnt particularly popular in the States I am sure there were other things they could have done to ensure success.

 

Heck just improving the graphics and adding Voices would have probably given it a pass here. But what do I know? >_<

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yangus in the Japanese version of the PS2 game is obviously suppose to be your 'brute with a good heart' who is also quick tempered and easy to surprise. But there's more to him than that, a second layer that doesn't translate in words, but in action. He fits a very common stereotype in Anime, mainly Shonen Anime.

 

I think Yangus is one of the best examples of localization...ever. A lesser team could've made him just another archetype, but Honeywood worked with Horii while VIII was still in development and made him one of the most memorable characters to ever come out of DQ. If it weren't for Honeywood and Plus Alpha, he'd be your standard brute named Muhammad. Yangus carries the game and I'm glad they nixed the tired and predictable Japanese tropes.

 

And in the case of DQIV DS, Party Chat and some dialogue was removed completely.

 

Blame the budget Square Enix gave IV on that one. But really, can you blame them? How else were they gonna buy and decorate that bus?

 

To add to this, many of the changes we did get in DQVIII, IV and V seemed blatantly aimed at kids.

 

Good! They need to build the audience and build it with something well written that everyone can enjoy. Japanese RPGs have turned into an insular, stagnant audience. I don't want DQ to wind up like some of the series we see from Namco, Atlus, or XSeed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Yangus is one of the best examples of localization...ever. A lesser team could've made him just another archetype, but Honeywood worked with Horii while VIII was still in development and made him one of the most memorable characters to ever come out of DQ. If it weren't for Honeywood and Plus Alpha, he'd be your standard brute named Muhammad. Yangus carries the game and I'm glad they nixed the tired and predictable Japanese tropes.

 

But...Yangus was turned into a 'archtype'. He's your stantard British stereotype as viewed by foreigners. He might as well have come straight out of Oliver Twist. And while you fear that he could have made worse, I see many ways he could have been closer to the Japnese original. Why do you think he would have been turned into some kind of Muslium stereotype? Nothing about his even remotely seems Middle Eastern.

 

Also, the reason I say the Honeywood translation for DQVIII started the whole mess is because Plus Alpha said so. Read this article. Its quite sad how they even admit to blatantly changing characters names and adding acents, all to 'make it seem like voice acting through text'. This is the epitome of what's wrong to do in localization in my opinion. Just like Naturo saying 'Belive it' in the American dub, Yangus shouldn't be stuck with 'Cor Blimey' as a catch phrase. Because he didn't say that in the Japanese.

 

http://www.siliconer...s-localization/

 

"Apart from all the arduous hours translating, late-night teleconferences with our overseas offices, and hot debates on just how much alliteration hit the sweet spot...."

 

Wait...just how much allteration? So now you have like a guage. 40% alteration is acceptable. 50% is pushing it...how about NO alteration except in extreme cases where things don't translate to Japanese?

 

Blame the budget Square Enix gave IV on that one. But really, can you blame them? How else were they gonna buy and decorate that bus?

 

I've never heard reports about a budget problem being the problem. And even then, they could have drastically cut down the amount of effort and time required to translate DQIV if they didn't put all those accents in there. This would have given them plenty of time to also do the party chat.

 

But yes, SE putting like 90% of its marketing into FFXIII was a travesty. If even 5% of that would have went into advertising DQ in the west, we'd probably have much better sales today. But that's a different topic.

 

Good! They need to build the audience and build it with something well written that everyone can enjoy. Japanese RPGs have turned into an insular, stagnant audience. I don't want DQ to wind up like some of the series we see from Namco, Atlus, or XSeed.

 

....except series like Persona, Tales or even Atelier have been getting more attention than Dragon Quest in America. And my point was, this kind of writing which seems aimed at kids is NOT going to appeal to all audiences. I can barely stand it, and I'm a fan of the series. There's hundreds of people I've heard on different forums or even in real life, who 'hate' certain characters in DQ games, and the localization its entirely to blame. Haven't you ever wondered how the most popular DQ character in Japan is also one of the most hated in America? Yes, I'm talking about Bianca. The most common complaint is 'Bianca sounds like a hick'....which is entirely the translations fault.

 

Look, I don't deny these translations are liked by some. But that's the point. DQ is being forced into a 'niche' by its forced acents and less than stellar marketing. Final Fantasy and Pokemon games have become the most popular JRPGs in America, and hardly ever had 'accents' or 'puns' in them. The most famous example of puns in the FF series is FFVI. And there's only 2-3 of them. I argue that DQ as a series is going to be overlooked as long as it has such a trnaslation. Because all the little kiddies in America only want to play Mature games, and all the 'grown up' gamers like us want to play games that have some assemblance of quality. And I don't think the DQ localizations hit either of those. I thought it was pretty evident with how badly done the voices and script was in Dragon Quest Swords and Dragon Quest IV DS.

 

Agreed. I will uploading a vid soon explaining my views on this subject. But I'll answer your question.

 

People say that in order for the game to be successful in the States they had to make these changes to future games. Otherwise it would never have gotten popular. While its true the series wasnt particularly popular in the States I am sure there were other things they could have done to ensure success.

 

Dragon Quest waqs never 'popular' in the states for a host of reasons, most tied to bad localizations and a lack of marketing. Dragon Warrior I came out 3 years late and after Final Fantasy. Dragon Warrior II-IV weren't advertised. Dragon Quest V and VI never came over at all. Dragon Warrior VII was a sleeper title at best. Dragon Quest VIII had marginal marketing and also relied on word of mouth. Etc on down the line.

 

The reason Pokemon and Final Fantasy did so well was long term, heavy marketing. Its just as simple as that. FFVII, X and XIII had some of the largest marketing budgets for their time. Pokemon has had probably the largest ongoing marketing budget of any game ever. Dragon Quest.....well, aside from Dragon Warrior I, Dragon Quest VIII, Dragon Quest Joker and Dragon Quest IX, it hasn't really had any marketing outside Japan. And having commercials for a major series only every 5-10 years doesn't make a series popular.

 

But since this thread is about the localization, I feel that has also hurt sales. DQ doesn't exactly have a good reputation outside Japan to begin with. Many people who play the games are looking for a reason not to like it. If suddenly they're assaulted with name changes and hard to read accents with a dozen apostrophies on the screen, that's easily enough of an excuse to turn the game off before you even get to the meat of the game. And as fans of the series know, it takes a good number of hours before you really get into games like DQV or DQVIII.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dragon Quest was never 'popular' in the states for a host of reasons, most tied to bad localizations and a lack of marketing. Dragon Warrior I came out 3 years late and after Final Fantasy. Dragon Warrior II-IV weren't advertised. Dragon Quest V and VI never came over at all. Dragon Warrior VII was a sleeper title at best. Dragon Quest VIII had marginal marketing and also relied on word of mouth. Etc on down the line.

 

The reason Pokemon and Final Fantasy did so well was long term, heavy marketing. Its just as simple as that. FFVII, X and XIII had some of the largest marketing budgets for their time. Pokemon has had probably the largest ongoing marketing budget of any game ever. Dragon Quest.....well, aside from Dragon Warrior I, Dragon Quest VIII, Dragon Quest Joker and Dragon Quest IX, it hasn't really had any marketing outside Japan. And having commercials for a major series only every 5-10 years doesn't make a series popular.

 

But since this thread is about the localization, I feel that has also hurt sales. DQ doesn't exactly have a good reputation outside Japan to begin with. Many people who play the games are looking for a reason not to like it. If suddenly they're assaulted with name changes and hard to read accents with a dozen apostrophies on the screen, that's easily enough of an excuse to turn the game off before you even get to the meat of the game. And as fans of the series know, it takes a good number of hours before you really get into games like DQV or DQVIII.

 

Oh I agree with you. Trust me on that. I was just saying making these lousy changes to the DQ series just wasnt needed. Just advertise alot more/Give the graphics a little boost/Try to take a page from DW1's book and make specific items to come with said purchase. DW1 came with lots of cool stuff. :D

 

Edit: Now that I think on it....DWII did the same thing. If I recall you got a nice colored map with lots of neat artwork for In-Game items.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Frizz = bad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dragon Quest was never 'popular' in the states for a host of reasons, most tied to bad localizations and a lack of marketing. Dragon Warrior I came out 3 years late and after Final Fantasy. Dragon Warrior II-IV weren't advertised. Dragon Quest V and VI never came over at all. Dragon Warrior VII was a sleeper title at best. Dragon Quest VIII had marginal marketing and also relied on word of mouth. Etc on down the line.

 

The reason Pokemon and Final Fantasy did so well was long term, heavy marketing. Its just as simple as that. FFVII, X and XIII had some of the largest marketing budgets for their time. Pokemon has had probably the largest ongoing marketing budget of any game ever. Dragon Quest.....well, aside from Dragon Warrior I, Dragon Quest VIII, Dragon Quest Joker and Dragon Quest IX, it hasn't really had any marketing outside Japan. And having commercials for a major series only every 5-10 years doesn't make a series popular.

 

But since this thread is about the localization, I feel that has also hurt sales. DQ doesn't exactly have a good reputation outside Japan to begin with. Many people who play the games are looking for a reason not to like it. If suddenly they're assaulted with name changes and hard to read accents with a dozen apostrophies on the screen, that's easily enough of an excuse to turn the game off before you even get to the meat of the game. And as fans of the series know, it takes a good number of hours before you really get into games like DQV or DQVIII.

 

Oh I agree with you. Trust me on that. I was just saying making these lousy changes to the DQ series just wasnt needed. Just advertise alot more/Give the graphics a little boost/Try to take a page from DW1's book and make specific items to come with said purchase. DW1 came with lots of cool stuff. :D

 

Edit: Now that I think on it....DWII did the same thing. If I recall you got a nice colored map with lots of neat artwork for In-Game items.

 

Oh I totally agree as well. Sorry, I know I come off as condacending and state a ton of facts. But well...that's the only way I know of how to explain my views.

 

And I totally agree. All DQ needs and needed in the past was sustained marketing and maybe some pre-order bonuses. We got some pre-order bonuses, which was nice. But then, only about 4 out of the 19-20 DQ games that came out in America got any advertising. And of course, even less games came out in Europe.

 

I still contend that these localizations are doing more harm than good. And for every person I know who likes the accents, I've heard just as many who quit playing games because of them. And its not like people are going out to buy the games because of the accents/puns. People play the DQ games for the unique stories and a sense of exploration. And some even play them because of the art design by Toriyama. I've never heard anyone say they only play DQ because of the accents, except those who are obsessed with Yangus. And only liking one game in a series of 40+ games isn't exactly a fan.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As much as I adore the accents, I'll agree that DQIVDS was pretty heavy on them. In particular I had almost no idea what was being said at the end of Ragnar's chapter xD

 

I was honestly unaware of all the hate the new-type DQ translations have gotten from oldschool fans. I don't recall anyone ever being really upset when we went from Cure 3 to Curaga in the FF series or anything... admittedly it's not QUITE the same thing, but, you know. One funny thing is that we've gone back to "Erdrick" after getting "Loto" in the GBC games, I thought that was kind of a neat shout-out to older fans.

 

Funny that Alexander O. Smith was brought up, I adore his translations as well, but you wouldn't believe the amount of hate his work with Final Fantasy Tactics has gotten! In that particular case, I did enjoy actually being able to understand the script, but I didn't like all the name changes (Algus to Argath, for example). I will probably always continue to use the original translation's names for stuff purely out of habit, but I do not outright hate the new changes, either.

 

I remember when I played FF8 for the first time, I was not happy with Cura and Curaga - I want Cure 2 and Cure 3 :).

 

For me it's not hate of the new stuff cause then that would implicate I hate playing the newer games and that is not the case. I think after a certain point I just get used to the newer translation. I am happy though that Erdrick returned in DQ9, I always preferred that name to Loto/Roto and use it as much as possible in DQ games. Same with FF, eventually I stopped caring that it was Cura and Curaga, but I did prefer the older names like with DQ.

 

The only thing I really disliked was some of the accents most notably Ragnar's and Burland just cause it was hard to understand. There's a difference between having variety of accents and making that variety understandable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
But...Yangus was turned into a 'archtype'. He's your stantard British stereotype as viewed by foreigners. He might as well have come straight out of Oliver Twist. And while you fear that he could have made worse, I see many ways he could have been closer to the Japnese original. Why do you think he would have been turned into some kind of Muslium stereotype? Nothing about his even remotely seems Middle Eastern.

 

Not really. He had a personality fitting his design, background, and setting. Horii originally named him Muhammad because he thought the name sounded cool. Honeywood, who was working with Horii during development, actually spearheaded the change. Yangus came from the ‘gus ‘gus ‘gus way he laughs. I also wonder how far in advance they cast the voice actors due to Yangus’ striking resemblance to Ricky Grover. All n’ all, thanks to Honeywood and Plus Alpha, Yangus turned out better than his original concept.

 

I've never heard reports about a budget problem being the problem.

 

Honeywood stated that the party chat was cut due to budget. I recommend you listen to this. The real interview begins halfway though. I don’t recommend the first half, or any of their other episodes for that matter, unless you have a deep love for unlawful carnal knowledge.

 

The only thing I really disliked was some of the accents most notably Ragnar's and Burland just cause it was hard to understand. There's a difference between having variety of accents and making that variety understandable.

 

And this man is from New York City. He knows a thing or two about unintelligible accents!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was honestly unaware of all the hate the new-type DQ translations have gotten from oldschool fans. I don't recall anyone ever being really upset when we went from Cure 3 to Curaga in the FF series or anything... admittedly it's not QUITE the same thing, but, you know. One funny thing is that we've gone back to "Erdrick" after getting "Loto" in the GBC games, I thought that was kind of a neat shout-out to older fans.

 

The change from Cure 3 to Curaga made the spell actually get closer to the Japanese original, unlike the changes in DQ (as much as they keep saying that was their intent, I do not see it; just read Mimas's post above).

 

I would be very happy if the original spell names were used (just like in the Dragon Quest anime I watched). I know it would be hard to do after the DW games used the other names, so I can happily use those instead. Those old translated names I felt at least respected the source.

 

And going back to Erdrick after we already had "Loto" (should have been "Roto", though)... While I think fans will be happy the old English will be retained on the first three games, it seems to me as if the current team wants to dismiss everything Enix did the last decade. Kind of what Megalosaro said about the translators thinking they are better than the creators, but also applying it to the old localization team.

 

While I am having my BF playing DQ games now, I make sure to remind him of the original names for everything. We also play it in Spanish (also full of puns, so it must be some kind of mandate from the Western offices), so I do not know how bad the text itself is in English (although I HATE the name changes).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the puns are overdone at times but they don't really bother me to much.

 

I would much prefer a game, on a system I own, with any puns or accents they care to throw in as long as we get a good game.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not really. He had a personality fitting his design, background, and setting. Horii originally named him Muhammad because he thought the name sounded cool. Honeywood, who was working with Horii during development, actually spearheaded the change. Yangus came from the ‘gus ‘gus ‘gus way he laughs. I also wonder how far in advance they cast the voice actors due to Yangus’ striking resemblance to Ricky Grover. All n’ all, thanks to Honeywood and Plus Alpha, Yangus turned out better than his original concept.

 

I hate to nitpick, but you're kindo stating that as a fact. Which it isn't, because as multiple people in this thread and others on other forums have said, they don't like the changes. And of course, my arguments against it.

 

I understand if you don't agree with me, but it kind of makes it feel like you overlooked my side and just accept all the changes as being superior by default. What about the changes to Bianca I mentioned? Why did clearly western names like Barbera and Papas have to be changed? And I still don't think 'budget cuts' is a good excuse for cutting out party chat, especially since Yuji Horii himself said it was one of the major reasons he remade DQIV, in Nintendo Power no less. I stil think if they spent less time trying to 'come up with neat accents and puns for each character and monsters', they would have had time and money to translate the party chat. besides, if DQIV had 'budget cuts', why did they suddenly throw more into the translation of DQV? SE didn't advertise that game any more than DQIV. In fact, they made less copies of DQV than DQIV.

 

The only thing I really disliked was some of the accents most notably Ragnar's and Burland just cause it was hard to understand. There's a difference between having variety of accents and making that variety understandable.

 

And I feel the same way about many other accents. Especially that 'hick 'accent in DQV and the 'french' accent in Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker. And I think some of the accents are downright politically incorrect. If I was Russian and played DQIV, I'd be offended by Alena's backwards talking junk.

 

But as for just plain badly done and hard to understand, that 'ghost' accent in DQV takes the cake. Its one thing to be cute and add a letter here and there. But when you have text spelled out like 'OOOOOHHHHH YYYOOOOUUUU AAARRRRREEEEEE..." That is just plain pathetic. Even kids will think that's overboard and lame.

 

I actually think this is the biggest failing of the Plus Alpha translations. A 'good' localization is suppose to retain as much of the original source as it can, while still being understandable to people in its target country. Not only did the guys at Plus Alpha change things that didn't need to be changed (names, plot points, etc), they made the game a lot arder or more annoying to read. The avg American can't even bother reading a book or watching subtitles on a TV program, and those are usually written in plain English. The accents in DQIV some other games are full of apostrophies, extra letters, purposefully misspelled words, gramatical nightmares and etc. They did the complete opposite of what a good localization should do; they made it both harder to read for their target audience and changed tons of the source to make those accents/puns work.

 

I remember when I played FF8 for the first time, I was not happy with Cura and Curaga - I want Cure 2 and Cure 3 :).

 

The funny this is, as much as I complain about the accents, I don't really care about the spell names much. I've gotten used to 'Oomph' and 'Whack' and 'Kaboom'....but again, aside from very rare circumstances, those don't have to do with story or characters. When you start changing location names (AllTrades Abbey still makes me cringe...), character names and throwing accents all over the place, it changes those characters. Someone who has played the old NES version of Dragon Quest IV will have a different view of Alena as a character than someone who played it on the DS. Simply because of her accent. its like changing the voice in an Anime. You may like the dubbed voice more, but because there's a different voice, it becomes a different character. Would you want to watch an Episode of the Simpsons where Homer is suddenly replaced by a British guy with a cockney accent? No? So why is it okay in Anime and video games?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

....except series like Persona, Tales or even Atelier have been getting more attention than Dragon Quest in America.

 

Ooh, THIS I want evidence for. Persona has the Atlus diehards, and Tales has the the Tales diehards, but Atelier? I want some substantiation for this claim.

 

Many people who play the games are looking for a reason not to like it. If suddenly they're assaulted with name changes...

 

This complaint has absolutely NOTHING to do with the previous sentence. If they're looking for a reason not to like it, it is highly likely that they were not looking to play Dragon Quest games in the first place, and as a corollary, probably aren't fans in the first place. Which means that they wouldn't know about name changes at all.

 

The accents and difficult to read script of IV may have contributed to diminished sales, but the name changes would only potentially alienate the old, OLD fans, and those are a terribly small number to begin with. Furthermore, I'd say that IX's strong marketing has resulted in many newcomers instead coming to the other 3 DS games, which makes up for the loss of the old, OLD fans as well as creates a new generation of fans with familiarity of the new names. I'm not saying that the new fans don't know that the names were changed necessarily, but I am saying that if we ran numbers against each other, it probably didn't prevent them from picking up the games.

 

A 'good' localization is suppose to retain as much of the original source as it can, while still being understandable to people in its target country.

 

No, a good localization retains the spirit of the script, even if it's at the cost of literal accuracy. Phoenix Wright is a pretty good example of this. If you want a more literal translation, that can be done, but the usual complaint about those is that they are very dry to read. Heck, most fan translators try to find the right balance of spirit and letter.

 

Would you want to watch an Episode of the Simpsons where Homer is suddenly replaced by a British guy with a cockney accent?

 

No, because a cockney accent is too low class for his character. He's supposed to be what amounts to an every-man, so we'd want a middle-class (perhaps lower middle-class) British voice actor for him if we were doing this. Again, it's about retaining spirit of the character.

 

Alena may have a silly accent, but she's still the same headstrong reckless princess she always was.

 

I don't care for name changes, (I still call her Flora, and call them Brey and Cristo) but as I've gotten older, I've found that I'm far more in favor of a good localization over an okay translation. I'm not nearly as much of a purist as I used to be, simply because having done fantranslation, strict translation SUCKS. I do not want to have to try to find a way to make a Japanese cultural pun work in America. I don't want to have to have my viewer or player look up what the hell the joke is or have to explain it with an author's note. I want to make as equivalent a pun as I can, that conveys the spirit of the scene even if it's nothing like what's being said. Even if this annoys the purists, it is a better move for general audience accessability reasons.

 

So I don't fault them for making the decisions that they did. And I have no idea why DQV got its party chat when DQIV didn't, but there are quite a few things that could have cut costs that we don't know about.

 

Oh, and I'm all for Erdrick. I appreciate them going back to that in 9 actually. I felt it was a good throwback to the old fans of 1, and a bit of a compromise given how much the new translation has changed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, because a cockney accent is too low class for his character. He's supposed to be what amounts to an every-man, so we'd want a middle-class (perhaps lower middle-class) British voice actor for him if we were doing this. Again, it's about retaining spirit of the character.

 

So you interpret. Doesn't it stand to reason that someone else might not find a cockney accent to 'fit' Yangus or a backwards Yoda speech to 'fit' Alena? Just because you do doesn't mean everyone else does. And that's sadly becoming the heart of this discussion. One persons personal views against another. While I'm trying to make the case that there ARE alternatives they could have done to please both parties. There was no need to make name changes or accents. And if they HAD to do so, why not tone it down some? As I said before, some games like Chrono Cross and Zelda had accents. But they didn't detract from the game. THAT is the middle ground I'm looking for.

 

Alena may have a silly accent, but she's still the same headstrong reckless princess she always was.

 

I would argue she seemed less 'headstrong' and more 'ignorant' in the Plus Alpha translation. As well as her apperance in Fortune Street. And that's the problem. Her accent passes her off as a confused foreigner, not a headstrong princess ready to go on an adventure. But that's just how I saw her. Especially since so many of her statements ended in a question (again, due to the accent).

 

I don't care for name changes, (I still call her Flora, and call them Brey and Cristo) but as I've gotten older, I've found that I'm far more in favor of a good localization over an okay translation. I'm not nearly as much of a purist as I used to be, simply because having done fantranslation, strict translation SUCKS. I do not want to have to try to find a way to make a Japanese cultural pun work in America. I don't want to have to have my viewer or player look up what the hell the joke is or have to explain it with an author's note. I want to make as equivalent a pun as I can, that conveys the spirit of the scene even if it's nothing like what's being said. Even if this annoys the purists, it is a better move for general audience accessability reasons.

 

So I don't fault them for making the decisions that they did.

 

Look, I know all about dry translations. Dragon Warrior VII on PSX was a chore to keep up with for this reason. But 'accents' don't need to be added to improve that. Look at Dragon Warrior I-III on the GBC. They also feature a pretty straight translation, but it wasn't 'dry'. Can't we have some kind of middle ground, and not an extreme towards the silly and cliche like the Plus Alpha translations had?

 

And clearly one fan wasn't happy with it (myself), so why should I back down? Just as you have your opinion, I have mine. And the general public doesn't really seem to factor into this much at all? The sales and reputation of DQ in America sure doesn't seem to be improving. So even with the general public, I say the accents are failing. As for the 'fans' who you pass off as being less important, they're the ones who go out and buy the most games. They are the bread and butter of the series which buy about 150,000 copies of EVERY DQ game that comes out in America. If you start alienating those people, the games will sell even less, if at all. I can guarantee this site and people like you and I ave done more to get people into DQ than any marketing from SE has done in 20 years.

 

As well, these accents sure aren't drawing in NEW people into the series. The only major bump in sales we've seen for the series has been DQVIII and IX, both which had marketing. Its marketing which improves sales, not accents. So I seriously don't see where you're coming from.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hate to nitpick, but you're kindo stating that as a fact. Which it isn't, because as multiple people in this thread and others on other forums have said, they don't like the changes. And of course, my arguments against it.

 

They did do an excellent job with Yangus. They helped develop the character, so it's hard to deviate from the source when you are the source. Also keep in mind that the original had to communicate with plain text, while the English version got to play up other aspects.

 

There are some honest criticisms of DQ localizations, but this is the first time I've heard of anyone not liking Yangus.

 

What about the changes to Bianca I mentioned? Why did clearly western names like Barbera and Papas have to be changed?

 

Sorry, I tend to go outside from time to time. It's how I get money and $#!&@es.

 

Bianca is hardly hated. She sounds like a hick because she is a hick. Always was. She's a tomboy and a farm girl, a direct contrast to the delicate Flora. For the setting they chose, she has the appropriate dialect. Papas is a borderline Engrish name that was probably going to be changed regardless.

 

Japanese storytelling folks often use English names, but it doesn't always fit the setting. It also goes both ways. Look at how bad Prince Ojiron stands out with the rest of DQ V's characters.

 

And I still don't think 'budget cuts' is a good excuse for cutting out party chat

 

And yet that's what happened. Go listen to the interview.

 

You may like the dubbed voice more, but because there's a different voice, it becomes a different character. Would you want to watch an Episode of the Simpsons where Homer is suddenly replaced by a British guy with a cockney accent? No? So why is it okay in Anime and video games?

 

That always happens when something is adapted for a different audience. Look at The Office. In the beginning Michael Scott was a carbon copy of David Brent. It didn't take off until it did its own thing.

 

And have you seen The Simpsons dubbed into other languages?

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9aZqSugCsY

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whew. Taking from what was said here, I intend to contact SE and claw* my way up to talk to someone in authority. I'd like to think I have a decent understanding of everyone's view points. That said, I'll have to re-read this topic and take notes. A lot of what was said reflects my personal views. Some of the things I don't necessarily agree with have a certain soundness behind them. I'll post what I'm going to say here so that I can get input. Basically, my idea is what was stated in my first post. A fan translation. This will only work if I can find willing translators, and can get the translation done before the English version is close to release over here. I thank everyone for their input. I'm quite surprised at the number that actually like what recent localization have done. Like Mimas, I think that the insertion of puns is disrespectful to the original authors. This is ultimately is a moot point, if we get our own translation. With our own translation we could pretty much have things in a way that would satisfy most of the Old style localization crowd. Probably still need to say more.... Ah. It'll come to me.

 

Dwaine,

About the whole targeting kids thing. While granted I wasn't exactly a "normal" kid, I liked DW/DQ for having a more adult feel. I actually liked VII's style, dry though it might be. I liked in DWM that there was skulls littering the ground, and that there was a guillotine and a monster who wanted you to be beheaded. This definitely gave a more adult feel to the game. I'll admit, I've never had a fondness of poop jokes. Leave those to other games. Honestly, I think if as a kid I was given a chance to play a little of the VII and new IV, I'd play VII first. I'd probably still play IV afterwards, but I would wonder what the heck happened to the writers. Maybe that's just me.

 

Ah, yes. Right. Lastly, I'd like to thank everyone for their participation. To those of you who wondered why they bothered to write so much, I'll try not to let your posts be in vain. I think the reason you wrote so much is because you have a love for the series. I could be wrong... But, I don't think so.

 

*What I mean by claw is be polite as possible, whilst still being assertive. I've got a certain approach I'm going to try. Might work. Probably won't. But meh, I won't feel right if I don't try. I want to include the community in what I say to them. I'll detail my approach more once I actually do some research on corporate structure. I'll definitely want to have a word with the PR department. I know that for sure.

 

On a side note. Wow. Spell check isn't working for me. :( Luckily I copied and pasted this into a text editor with spell check.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And clearly one fan wasn't happy with it (myself), so why should I back down? Just as you have your opinion, I have mine. And the general public doesn't really seem to factor into this much at all? The sales and reputation of DQ in America sure doesn't seem to be improving. So even with the general public, I say the accents are failing. As for the 'fans' who you pass off as being less important, they're the ones who go out and buy the most games. They are the bread and butter of the series which buy about 150,000 copies of EVERY DQ game that comes out in America. If you start alienating those people, the games will sell even less, if at all. I can guarantee this site and people like you and I ave done more to get people into DQ than any marketing from SE has done in 20 years.

 

As well, these accents sure aren't drawing in NEW people into the series. The only major bump in sales we've seen for the series has been DQVIII and IX, both which had marketing. Its marketing which improves sales, not accents. So I seriously don't see where you're coming from.

 

I never stated you should back down and I have no idea where you got that from. I am not making this personal. What I AM saying though is that I don't agree with your belief that the accents are hurting sales of the series. You can't point to a game selling well due to strong marketing, and then the other games doing poorly due to everything that ISN'T the lack of marketing. It goes both ways.

 

Oh, and Korcha's family's tic where they added -CHA to the end of every line was really annoying. Irenes was a little annoying to try to parse as well. I'd say that the accents in Cross had several characters who were just as annoying to read.

 

Additionally, the old OLD fans are the ones who will buy the games regardless, or wouldn't buy the games regardless. (That is to say, they're either of the variety who will keep buying DQ games because they identify as fans of the series, or they've stopped playing DQ games outright and will find any little nitpick to justify why the new games just aren't as good as the old ones and thus aren't worth supporting. Even when it's the only localization of V or VI we've gotten.) The accents will do little to push them away. Changing mechanics, on the other hand, will do far more to alienate them. (I know of quite a few who just cannot stand IX's pseudo-MMO direction, and are even less enthusiastic about X.) So once again, the accents are nigh-irrelevant to dwindling sales in this example.

 

As a final note: I am pretty sure I'm recalling that DQVIII did not have voice acting in the Japanese version. That it specifically was an addition for the Western version, and that the localization in some ways added defining attributes to his character.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

About the whole "kids" argument, look at stuff like Pixar movies or the Bone comics. Technically "kids," but enjoyed just as much, if not more by adults. That's what you shoot for and Plus Alpha is great that that. To call them ignorant is an ignorant comment itself. You may not like the context, and that's fine. I haven't agreed with every decision 100% either. That doesn't change the fact that they're still good writers and translators.

 

I'll definitely want to have a word with the PR department. I know that for sure.

 

All the old guard is long gone, so you'd be wasting your time. ...I could also make a really dumb joke here, but that would mean addressing one's attractiveness, thus breaking a Rule of The Internet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I don't really know what more to say. It seems people are misunderstanding my points and starting to get offended, so I think it would be best to move on.

 

I would just like to touch on a few points.

 

1) yes I have seen Simpsons in other languages, but that's wasn't my point. And even with those other dubs of the Simpsons (of which there is a very well done Japnese version as well), it still changes your perception of the character. Homer in Japanese is a totally different character than Homer in English. Because the voice is 50% or more of what breathes 'life' into an animated character (I think its closer to 90%, but that's just me). I was trying to use this to express how adding voices and accents to Yangus (and all the characters) made them into entirely different characters. But it seems everyone likes the way he was changed so my point isn't really coming across.

2) While you think the accents aren't hurting the series, I don't see them helping the series either. DQ Jokerm Swords, IV and V saw a pretty stable decrease in sales for each title, capping out at around 150,000 for DQV (the lowest selling DQ game in America). If we are to assume in America DQ has about 150,000 'stable' fans who will buy any game, then what can be done to improve that number? In my view, the accents didn't increase sales as the only game to increase sales of the series was DQIX, which saw a 400% increase in sales over DQV DS. And that can be attributed to heavy marketing by Nintendo and hype from word of mouth, not anything to do with the accents. Aditonally, DQIX had far less accents than the previous games. All I was trying to say is, you don't have to take my view that accents are hurting the series. But they sure aren't helping sell games either. And as I've pointed out before, plenty of people have spoken out against the accents and name changes. Its clearly becoming a long term problem with some fans, and some 'long term fans' are quite purplexed why chages had to be made between the NES originals and the remakes (like Dharma Temple or character names). I personally do know people who didn't buy DQIX and VI because they didn't like how DQIV and V were handled.

3) I never said I hate Yangus. He's one of my favorite DQ characters, as with most people. I just was using him as an example of localizations going too far. But again, if you think he was done better than the original, I can't really debate any further with you about that. What I CAN say is, later productions, like the Plus Alpha translations, went too far in my opinion trying to 'recreate voice acting through text'. And looking backwards, you can say the decision to add accents and voice acting to DQVIII was a negative influence to later games like Swords, Joker, IV and V. Again, I think the localization of DQVIII is right on the barrier for having an appropriate amount of accents and 'changes'. But the games that followed took many more liberties, even overlooking 'budget cuts'. Which I still don't see how DQIV could have had budget cuts compared to DQV, which didn't even get as many copies made. In any event, it seems some of you think all the accents are a good thing so that's pretty much the end of that discussion. But again, not everyone thinks that way. I think the new translations for DQIX, DQMJoker 2 and DQVI have been moving into a better direction, drastically cutting down the accents and changes. Perhaps we can just agree that this middleground is a fair comprimise and just go on enjoying the future games that are released.

 

The only question I still have for this thread is, without any prior knowledge of voice acting or accents, would you honestly think less of games like DQVIII, DQSwords and DQV if they had stuck to a straight translations more like DQI-III on the GBC? Or do you honestly think the all the name changes and accents are required?

 

You know my opinion. But I just don't see how it would have been a negative for the series to stick to the ttranslations it had done in the past. Aside from some small uses of slang words like 'cuz' and 'fer', most FF games have a pretty straight translation, and people are getting plenty of enjoyment out of the stories and characters in those games. Final Fantasy III and IV DS have very proper english. I don't see why DQ had to be different.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not offended, just a little frustrated that you seem to be taking an all or nothing stance on the effects of accents for the sales of DQ. There are so many other contributing factors, and especially marketing and exposure that resulted in low sales for IV and V. (Though keep in mind that V got a reprint as a result of IX, so the numbers did end up being decent.)

 

Also, how many copies of DQV did S-E print on their initial run if their sales capped at 150000? I remember it being sold out everywhere, whereas IV never had that problem.

 

And as far as DQ8 goes, I think I would have found it less incredible without the accents. Then again, I liked Dragon Warrior's "ye olde" accents as well. (Swords I think it wouldn't have mattered much, and I do not think all of the name changes or accents are required, but I've never felt that way. I do feel that if they're going to do them, they may as well do them well.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, how many copies of DQV did S-E print on their initial run if their sales capped at 150000? I remember it being sold out everywhere, whereas IV never had that problem.

 

120k, I believe. Best Buy and Gamestop were the only major brick and mortar retailers that carried it. IV was overproduced, which was funny because they gave it peanuts, which made them release the game incomplete AND the only marketing was one print ad and banners on GameFAQs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not offended, just a little frustrated that you seem to be taking an all or nothing stance on the effects of accents for the sales of DQ. There are so many other contributing factors, and especially marketing and exposure that resulted in low sales for IV and V. (Though keep in mind that V got a reprint as a result of IX, so the numbers did end up being decent.)

 

Well I really don't think I'm taking an all or nothing stance. I even backed off and said its probably not logical to think the accents are hurting sales. But again, I don't see them helping sales either. The only significant thing that has improved sales is marketing.

 

Also, on a side note, I don't have exact figures for the sales of DQV DS. I have to go by incorrect 'estimates' on sites like vgchartz. But they're reporting it sold about 140,000 in America, which I rounded up. And only 50,000 in Europe, which I HIGHLY doubt is the case, as DQ is one of the few series that sells better in Europe. Unless SE only printed 50,000 copies, which would make them even more dumb. As for DQIV, it had way too many copies sold initially. I was seeing extras in stores for years. Doesn't help that some people skipped buying it after hearing party chat was gone and the accents. And many people even returned the game for the same reasons.

 

And as far as DQ8 goes, I think I would have found it less incredible without the accents. Then again, I liked Dragon Warrior's "ye olde" accents as well. (Swords I think it wouldn't have mattered much, and I do not think all of the name changes or accents are required, but I've never felt that way. I do feel that if they're going to do them, they may as well do them well.)

 

Well then again, I think this is a nice compromise and I agree for the most part. DQVIII was handled well, but the later games could have done without it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...