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Author Topic: Vic Ireland on translating im@s  (Read 11581 times)

Setsuna

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Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« on: April 06, 2012, 02:41:46 AM »
http://www.rpgsite.net/articles/369-gaijinworks-victor-ireland-interview

I apologise, I've been very sick lately (Consequently no request filling) but I thought I'd drop this off. Normally I'd provide something like this without comment because I like staying neutral - actually, I WILL provide this without comment, because what I have to say could go on for pages on end and I'm not up for commentary today.

The bit I wish to draw your attention is two paragraphs from the end.

Have fun reading.
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animagic4u

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2012, 02:45:01 AM »
Don't let them have a kickstarter

JNiles

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2012, 02:46:47 AM »
I skipped right to the end, just to see.  "Fixing" Idolmaster?  I'd rather it stay broken.  ^_^;;;  No offense against Working Designs.

I'll read the full article in a bit, preoccupied with dinner.

Neko-P

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2012, 02:54:41 AM »
I'm... conflicted.

On one hand, and Idolmaster I can actually play!

On the other hand, will he go the (stupid, wrong, villainous, etc.) route of "Americanizing" the game? In that case, the game would be SHUNNED by the base, get reviewed to heck by angry fans, etc., until it goes into ruin. And then we'd lose whatever chance there was for a translated game.

I still just want a game with English text and Japanese voices. That's all I want. Is it that hard for a company to want to do? :<

animagic4u

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2012, 03:02:26 AM »
It's simple.
Don't give them money.

chikorita157

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2012, 03:15:49 AM »
Quote
Initially I wasn’t into it because of some of the more unsavory aspects to the loli angle, but I’ve since worked out a way to fix it without breaking the game.

LOL, what did I just read... but yeah, changing it will give the same effect of Xenoglossia, epic rage.

Not that it really matters since I'm trying to learn Japanese and going well so far...

Neko-P

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2012, 03:17:59 AM »
I'm not so sure we should be so harsh on him yet. Reading the kickstarter page, he doesn't seem to be "whitewashing" Class of Heroes as allegated. In fact, if enough money is raised, they'll keep the Japanese Audio on the disc, as well as the English.

Don't light me on fire for heresy (yet), but maybe we should support this. For now, at least. We don't know what his plans for iDOLM@STER are yet, and for all we know, his "fix" may be so small as to be negligible! (My guess is that they'd be localizing 2, and it'd be a slight age-up for the loli idols. And maybe Miki. Not like that many people wouldn't believe it... Not that I like the prospect of messing with the idols, but...) Besides, we can always try the whole "petition the game company to stop changes" thing. I mean, fan backlash stopped the Klonoa design change when they were localizing Klonoa's Wii game. It might work here if he tries anything funny!

JNiles

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2012, 03:35:01 AM »
Hmm... I don't know enough about him or his former company Working Designs (which seems to have a good reputation- it was mentioned fondly at another site where this project came up).  The games mentioned in the article are pretty well known, but I've never played any of them.  Anyone with experience have opinions on how they were localized?  Though since that was a long time ago, that may not be relevant.

About Class of Heroes... I'm on the ATLUS mailing list, so I was aware of it before it came out.  It did indeed look like a dud- like someone ran a generic RPG through a generic anime filter, and I say that as someone who likes RPGs.  We'll see if the sequel is better, if the kickstarter actually goes through.


Sorry, but I'm gonna get off-subject for a bit here- this is not directly related to anything stated in the article, but it got me thinking.  I have pretty negative feelings about localization where music is involved.  I am NOT saying that in a hypothetical localization, the music would be swapped out or the lyrics changed to English, but the possibility does get me thinking along those lines.  Just hearing the word "boy band" raises the possibility.  I actually think they do terribly over here- there are large gaps in time where nobody is popular.  Or perhaps I just don't pay attention to that sort of thing?

I once heard someone compare Idolmaster's catalogue to children's music, and I think that's the closest English analogue.  And if you think of it as children's music, wouldn't you be tempted to change it to something else?

The only remotely decent instance of localized music I can recall is Pokemon, and they wrote brand new stuff for that, including character songs.

I am quite surprised that he named his company Gaijinworks.

So my hypothetical question is... if you thought he would do well with whatever other project he chose but would botch Idolmaster, would you rather all the other games failed just to eliminate the possibility of a botched Idolmaster localization?

Don't let them have a kickstarter

How about an AmiMami kick?

JNiles

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2012, 03:39:57 AM »
Breaking news: a localized Idolmaster video has been leaked!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPPKCT-XpfM


Alright, sorry for throwing fuel on the fire.   ;D  I don't think Idolmaster will ever be officially translated- do you envision Namco Bandai giving up any control over its property?

Someone go dig up that spoof picture with the localized names?  The one with GVG and Mr. Blackthorne.

Neko-P

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2012, 03:46:56 AM »

TheTanStar

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2012, 03:52:09 AM »
I said it once, and I'll say it again: iDOLM@STER 2 (PS3 and 360) will not have a localization due to Scamco's tendency to rule their properties with an iron fist. Half-life 2: Episode 3 (Still subject to Valve Time)/StarCraft 3 (Yes, three.) will be released before this even has a chance at a localization announcement.

If this does have a localization, and it won't, I'll personally buy a copy just to smash it on camera if it's bowdlerized in any way.

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2012, 04:53:06 AM »
Quote
Victor Ireland
Quote
Idolm@ster

No thanks. I would rather unlearn Japanese and marathon the series blind, over him ever touching any Im@s with his WD-styled 'improvements'.

Not that I ever see it happening. He's just being a big talker, as usual. :P
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Setsuna

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2012, 05:57:23 AM »
I'm... conflicted.

On one hand, and Idolmaster I can actually play!

On the other hand, will he go the (stupid, wrong, villainous, etc.) route of "Americanizing" the game? In that case, the game would be SHUNNED by the base, get reviewed to heck by angry fans, etc., until it goes into ruin. And then we'd lose whatever chance there was for a translated game.

I still just want a game with English text and Japanese voices. That's all I want. Is it that hard for a company to want to do? :<

I think I covered the logistics of actually localising the game, and its difficulties, before.

The major problem Vic (Yeah, if I ever see him again, I should clobber him with the Arc the Lad watch he gave me at E3 2001 over this. I doubt he remembers me though.) is making here is that he hasn't realised the fact that the game is in fact more of a vehicle for the entire franchise, or more accurately all its music.

In short, to make it work, he'd either have to very minimally touch it up and translate without ANY localisation at all (which will restrict the sales and appeal to a wider audience, severely damaging its business case, since the licensing fees WILL do a massive number on the case) or he'd have to effectively pull a Robotech, namely literally morph the entire franchise into an exclusively English speaking franchise.

... Although I think about it, the latter would probably ACTUALLY WORK as a business plan, and I bet good money that he's probably got it on the cards, and he actually is aware of all the above. He DOES have business sense (despite needing a bit of reigning in from time to time) which I'll credit him, and he does mostly have a brain.

To be REALLY honest though, if he's going to do that, he might as well build a derivative work instead, then force a cross promotion game, but the question becomes 'Is that idea viable?'

Hmm... I don't know enough about him or his former company Working Designs (which seems to have a good reputation- it was mentioned fondly at another site where this project came up).  The games mentioned in the article are pretty well known, but I've never played any of them.  Anyone with experience have opinions on how they were localized?  Though since that was a long time ago, that may not be relevant.

About Class of Heroes... I'm on the ATLUS mailing list, so I was aware of it before it came out.  It did indeed look like a dud- like someone ran a generic RPG through a generic anime filter, and I say that as someone who likes RPGs.  We'll see if the sequel is better, if the kickstarter actually goes through.


Sorry, but I'm gonna get off-subject for a bit here- this is not directly related to anything stated in the article, but it got me thinking.  I have pretty negative feelings about localization where music is involved.  I am NOT saying that in a hypothetical localization, the music would be swapped out or the lyrics changed to English, but the possibility does get me thinking along those lines.  Just hearing the word "boy band" raises the possibility.  I actually think they do terribly over here- there are large gaps in time where nobody is popular.  Or perhaps I just don't pay attention to that sort of thing?

I once heard someone compare Idolmaster's catalogue to children's music, and I think that's the closest English analogue.  And if you think of it as children's music, wouldn't you be tempted to change it to something else?

The only remotely decent instance of localized music I can recall is Pokemon, and they wrote brand new stuff for that, including character songs.

I am quite surprised that he named his company Gaijinworks.

So my hypothetical question is... if you thought he would do well with whatever other project he chose but would botch Idolmaster, would you rather all the other games failed just to eliminate the possibility of a botched Idolmaster localization?

How about an AmiMami kick?


As for Class of Heroes and the kickstarter (among other things) there's a few factors (in regards to analysis) that makes this very, very murky.

a) For most part, he's trying to run a business operation on charity. Bad, bad idea. It also says he can't make the business case WITHOUT half a million dollars. (!) That's the between the lines reading.

(To be fair, it's actually 2 games for half a million dollars, and most of the printing costs would be done with the PS3 side of things, though.)

b) Class of Heroes 2 is by in large not a particularly good game. The PS3 version is BETTER (2G) but the original 2 on the PSP removed a lot of things out of 1 which recieved a lot of panning in the Japanese market. This however leads to...

c) It's the best of a bad hand he's gotten so he's playing it for everything it's worth - business wise, he managed to get the localisation rights from Acquire, and I imagine Acquire have permitted him to use it as a gauge - remember, this only stops the physical printing (a PSN release has been assured).

This means everyone else is watching it like a hawk, and business cases almost always need to cite research and the like... which leads to...

d) In a way, Vic Ireland is correct - this WILL determine how jRPGs are handed in the indefinite future. Basically, if it's not blockbuster, and there isn't a viable fan presence (numbers have undershot outside and even WITHIN the big jRPG leagues) physical releases will NOT happen unless profit margins improve. However...

e) This affects ONLY niche games - Class of Heroes' lineup is an anime Wizardry clone - First Person Dungeon crawling. This genre has had minor successes at most, with Xseed's Wizardry game being one of the last console releases. There's a couple of PC ones on Steam that are more recent though. Then again...

f) (Last one, I promise) this affects middling to the average - something that's necessary for a good stable market. Without the variety, there's no attempt at depth, meaning that without games that sell only 30-100k in the US, the risk of a gaming crash is HIGHER (For history students, please see the Atari) due to the fact all it takes is one of the remaining giants to post a miss of 5-10% (Since margins are that low) which brings up the absurd (but true) situation where it's entirely possible to build a business plan where you can actually sell a million copies of a game and still take a massive loss!

For non analysts it means this - If every game requires to make it big or go home, it lowers the number of titles, and more to the point it increases the likelihood that one of the majors will fail. Game creation and publishing is a risky, RISKY business. (And why on earth they'd accept a 5-7% Rate of Return I've no idea. I could make the same with zero risk at an Australian Bank account!)

As for the music genre, there's also the problem of rewriting the music - It's more viable to grab Takashi and try make her speak English for half an hour (Yep, I've tried, at a dinner table, in 2009. She insisted, but she's NOT ANY GOOD AT IT. :P) than to try get the song successfully translated. It's difficult. Possible, but it'd require weeks or months of work.

It's why you don't (despite its popularity) see k-pop songs translated in that manner, even though it'd sell like hotcakes if they did (Girls' Generation went on tour in EUROPE, that should say something right there!). Songs and lyrics most of the time only work in one language, and it's usually a case of luck, or a LOT of work (Ricky Martin with the Latin/English angle for example) where you can successfully pull it off.
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Funkies

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2012, 06:13:59 AM »
No thanks on iDOLM@STER localization.

When did so many folks stop discerning "reality" from "fiction" entirely?

I'm in no mood (nor of mental dexterity) to wax blahilogical about it right now.

His use of Kickstarter is fine by me.  It is a viable alternative currently, though I doubt such a thing will ever replace publishers.

Still, pass on iDOLM@STERness thank you.

Neko-P

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Re: Vic Ireland on translating im@s
« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2012, 06:22:03 AM »
... *Sigh* Can we keep him far away from Imas, then? (Seriously, though, would an English-text version of the game be so difficult...?)