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Author Topic: Comparing game localizations  (Read 51953 times)

Tomato

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Comparing game localizations
« on: September 11, 2011, 08:49:13 am »
Many orbits around the sun ago I started comparing Mother 2 and EarthBound and seeing how the game was localized. I actually FINALLY finished that a little while ago here: http://earthboundcentral.com/m2eb/ There's a ton of stuff, so it'll require like a full afternoon of time to read through  ;)



Anyway, since I'm a crazy guy I immediately started wanting to do the same with other games, so I just went through the original Super Mario Bros. in the same way and posted it here: http://matotree.com/localization/smb/



I didn't think there'd be much to write about first, but it actually turned out pretty interesting.

Right now I'm working on one for the first Zelda game, one quick question I have is this - does anyone know the differences between the 1.0 FDS version of Zelda and the 1.1 version? I've been playing the 1.0 version, but I haven't taken a look at the 1.1 yet.

Also, any suggestions for other games that might've had interesting localizations? Right now I want to avoid super-long games like EarthBound, so I'm mostly sticking with NES and early Super NES games. But two later games I definitely want to take a look at later on are Gitaroo Man and Symphony of the Night  :)

Gideon Zhi

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2011, 09:38:40 am »
I can already pinpoint most of the differences for you, but you might want to take a look at Cybernator (U)/Assault Suits Valken (J). Changes abound here - several conversations were removed from the game, character portraits disappeared, and once whole cutscene in the final level was slashed outright.

There's also The Rad Project.

Celice

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2011, 01:58:45 pm »
I like seeing these differences.  The Cutting Room Floor has some localization differences recorded in their wiki pages.

Almost all of the localized Fire Emblems have had tweaks and changes to gameplay and story mechanics in some way when they're brought over.  You won't notice them unless you played the original Japanese version first.

Pennywise

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2011, 02:40:04 pm »
One only need to look into the NES/SNES era for Nintendo to see just how bad things were. If they didn't mess up the translation, they messed up something else.

Bregalad

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2011, 03:09:15 pm »
I don't think there was any difference in the SMB localisation as the ROM says Super Mario Bros. (JU) which means the exact same data was in the japanese and american cartridges. European version was fixed for 50 Hz PAL consoles, and the game plays faster (because they speeded it up more than 6/5).

Games with the most differences include Castlevania III, IV, Dragon Quest/Warrior I and II, Adventure of Bayou Billy / Gun Sight and possibly some others.

Spooniest

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2011, 03:12:47 pm »
Anybody remember the awful chop job on the Ranma 1/2 fighting game on the Snes? They released it here as "Street Combat" or something, and it was God-awful.

It's not that the game it was based on was that great of a fighting game, but man were they paranoid about doing anything anime-related in the west. Guhh.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2011, 03:37:35 pm by Spooniest »

Pennywise

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2011, 04:01:11 pm »
Pretty sure that sort of thing had more to do with rights issues and/or not wanting to pay for them.

Tomato

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2011, 04:19:22 pm »
I don't think there was any difference in the SMB localisation as the ROM says Super Mario Bros. (JU) which means the exact same data was in the japanese and american cartridges.

Yep, I mention that on my site, I was actually pleasantly surprised how much there was still to talk about though.

There's also The Rad Project.

Oh yeah, definitely gotta include a link to that somewhere!

Garoth Moulinoski

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2011, 05:05:46 pm »
Another good project to take up one day might be to list the differences between Dragon Quest and Dragon Warrior, although I believe a couple of people have already done something similar for it.
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SargeSmash

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2011, 11:44:48 pm »
Dude, Totally Rad is most excellent.  For sure.

I have to admit, that's a much more interesting localization.  And while it may not have been completely received as lampooning the surfer-dude culture at the time, it's absolutely hilarious to read now.  And the gist of the story is communicated as well, such as it is, so I'd mark this up as a win on all fronts.
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Ryusui

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2011, 07:16:53 pm »
Yeah. The English script is actually pretty good (love the add-ins, like the gag where the girl is apparently learning magic by replicating a death-defying Houdini escape), though I have to say the art suffers. It's not that I prefer the anime-style stuff on principle or anything, but the "American-looking" characters are just freakin' ugly as hell. (And Zebediah Pong is creepy at any speed.)
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Panzer88

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2011, 04:27:14 pm »
This is why I've taken to just always playing the Japanese version of non RPG games for the NES/SNES. Not because I'm some sort of weeabo or otaku, but because I'm just tired of playing games through a filter.
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Spinner 8

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2011, 11:59:19 pm »
Anyway, since I'm a crazy guy I immediately started wanting to do the same with other games, so I just went through the original Super Mario Bros. in the same way and posted it here: http://matotree.com/localization/smb/

I kind of forgot to say anything when you first put this out, but I read through it all and I love it. Going into it I didn't think there would be much to it, but it's so great that you went into comparing the manuals and the Disk System version and even that awesome Tennis trick.  I hope you do many many more articles, and please continue to write a bunch of title tags. :)

Tomato

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2012, 03:01:43 pm »

For those who are interested, my Zelda comparison is up!

http://matotree.com/localization/zelda/

Garoth Moulinoski

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2012, 04:35:52 pm »
Oh, snap! I'll have to check this out later. If it makes you feel good, Tomato, I also had a blast going through you Earthbound one.
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Validus

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2012, 05:19:44 pm »
thank you brotha man!

Chpexo

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« Reply #16 on: August 10, 2012, 05:56:30 pm »
.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2016, 11:13:45 am by Chpexo »

Validus

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #17 on: August 10, 2012, 07:32:41 pm »
I prefer the Zelda 1 remake for SNES

the 3rd quest

KingMike

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #18 on: August 10, 2012, 10:28:03 pm »
As to the changed credits, it was just normal for developers to use fake names in the credits in those times. (don't know if it was a limitation by Nintendo for some reason, though. We weren't too far past the Atari "no credits at all permitted" days.
The composer in the original Mega Man games was credited as "Yukichan's Papa", even though I heard the composer was actually a woman.

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Bregalad

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Re: Comparing game localizations
« Reply #19 on: August 11, 2012, 04:29:38 am »
That was an interesting read.

I really wonder what they meant by "Retry" on the Game Over screen. "Retry" would normally be synonymous with "Continue", but I think here they messed up and meant "Retreat" or maybe "Retire".