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Author Topic: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty (Latest: Lunar 2)  (Read 93339 times)

Furluge

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2017, 02:03:12 pm »
I have to say I am a bit put off by all the negativity here. I don't think the localization of Lunar Eternal Blue is what you would call butchered or "j2e or 4kids" based on that catalog of edits. (Linked below) Honestly I think you are going to be hard pressed to find a team that cared as much about the source material and putting out a quality product as WD was. That being said good luck with your project, I hope it turns out to be everything you want it to be. Pointing it out I can see some of the difficulty changes pretty clearly, especially in MP costs. Magic XP to save was clearly a mistake (I would be interested in a patch that just removed this.) as WD admitted themselves in the book for Lunar EBC. The lowercase font does look very nice as well.

Lunar.net has all the differences between the uncut Japanese version and the J2e/4Kids-like abortion that Working Designs did for the Lunar games.

The site you want is actually www.lunar-net.com. (I think Mickey really wanted the .com address. It was hard to get new internet users to visit anything but .coms in the mid 90s, or they would always put .com at the end anyway.) Here is a link to the changes in Lunar Eternal Blue.I think in light of the changes your description of the translation isn't really all that fair. Actually I would go so far as to say it is a very good translation, but to each their own I suppose.

Yes, Working Designs jacked up the difficulty on Lunar to arguably unplayably frustrating levels for no readily apparent reason.

As someone who was the target audience when these games first game out they are not remotely unplayable. They are actually a bit on the easy side for games of the time and don't require lots of level grinding as was the norm back then. I have actually been playing the game again recently. I remember at the time  friends thought it was strange you beat the game at around level 50. Fighting final bosses who do 9999 regularly was kind of the norm back then.

Got I loved Lunar silver star so much as a kid, I hate that it was butchered so hard, to think I could of been playing an even better game! The Lunar games need a legends of localization.

I don't think you have too much to be disappointed about. Here is the catalog of changes to the original if you would like to see them. Translation is not an exact science so you are going to have a number of changes depending on who does it. The question is more which final version do you personally prefer. I would recommend you look at the changes and judge for yourself.

Voice redubs are doable considering this was amateur level voice acting back in the day, so I think anyone can pull that off if needed.

I think you might consider it amateur voice work now but I don't know if you would call it amateur voice work back in the day. There were a lot fewer good dubs for anime back in 1995 and next to none in video games back then. Even when the PS1 remakes came out the voice work was better than what was the norm. Personally I like the dub work but I can see how someone like Funimation could put together a better one these days, though it is a short list of dubbers who dub songs as well. Pioneer was the last group I remember who made a habit of that.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 02:16:23 pm by Furluge »
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Supper

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2017, 03:01:33 pm »
Thank you for creating these! Is there a chance you could do the same for Magic Knight Rayearth (Saturn)? A fun Zelda clone that would get cheap in terms of difficulty (notably, the final boss battle).

Not sure yet -- I do like doing the obscure stuff, and pretty much anything on the Saturn fits the bill. Right now I'm taking a look at Vay on the SCD.

The proper case in Lunar: Eternal Blue looks fantastic. Do you think you'd do Lunar: The Silver Star to have a matched set?

Yeah, it only makes sense to do both. I got kind of burned out on EB, so I'm taking a break from Lunar for now. I'm guessing the map/script formats are very similar, so hopefully it'll be a quicker and less painful process for SS.

I like the idea behind this, but I also understand why sometimes games need to be made harder. If a game is too easy to beat then it becomes boring to play, but if a game is too hard then it is frustrating and not fun. Finding the right balance is hard. I beat Popful mail years ago pretty quickly without much issue, but last year I decided to boot it up again and was surprised by how hard the final boss was (I loaded up my last game save). On replay, I found the last boss to be fairly frustrating and I don't know how I managed to beat it so quickly when I first played the game (Maybe because I played it from the beginning it helped me to refine my skills to the point that the last boss wasn't all that hard). I think I have become a casual gamer over the years, thus leading to me to suck at playing non-RPG games :P .

Really?  I never found the Lunar: EB or Lunar SSSC or popful mail to be all that hard.  The last boss gives a very nice challenge but otherwise, not too bad.  I remember beating SSSC on level 50 as a teen.

I certainly don't begrudge anyone for preferring the altered versions, but it kind of sucks that they're the only option if you want to play in English. I might make an alternate version of the Eternal Blue patch that includes the lower-case script but keeps the higher difficulty, though not until I've tested it more -- trying to keep two different patches at parity is more trouble than I want.

While I'm a big fan of WD and usually defend their localizations(at least they're not dry like some stuff done nowadays), I have to say the new font looks fantastic. Nice work.

Funny thing, that. The lower case font was actually already in the game and fully functional (in fact, the entire English font is included in the Japanese version). All I had to do was change the text. I think they did it that way because the lower case letters have a different baseline from the upper case ones, so they look a bit sloppy together, but it's such a ridiculous solution I have a hard time believing it.

On a related note, I might edit the font in the future to fix the baseline issue, though I'll have to write a compressor for the wacky font format first.

Anyway, thanks to everyone who's trying these out. Obviously, send any complaints my way and I'll get them fixed as quick as I can.

vivify93

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #22 on: January 19, 2017, 04:00:18 pm »
Funny thing, that. The lower case font was actually already in the game and fully functional (in fact, the entire English font is included in the Japanese version). All I had to do was change the text. I think they did it that way because the lower case letters have a different baseline from the upper case ones, so they look a bit sloppy together, but it's such a ridiculous solution I have a hard time believing it.

On a related note, I might edit the font in the future to fix the baseline issue, though I'll have to write a compressor for the wacky font format first.
Oh my god, that's horrible. It reminds me of something similar that happened for Secret of Mana--a lowercase font is fully working for the menu text, but it just wasn't utilized. But that's just the menu text. To make an entire game in all caps is just... wow.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 05:31:43 pm by vivify93 »
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Furluge

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2017, 04:32:54 pm »
Funny thing, that. The lower case font was actually already in the game and fully functional (in fact, the entire English font is included in the Japanese version). All I had to do was change the text. I think they did it that way because the lower case letters have a different baseline from the upper case ones, so they look a bit sloppy together, but it's such a ridiculous solution I have a hard time believing it.

On a related note, I might edit the font in the future to fix the baseline issue, though I'll have to write a compressor for the wacky font format first.

If you really want to know you could just ask Victor Ireland, he would probably tell you why they canned something they did all that work on..  :thumbsup:
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thainferno305

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2017, 06:01:35 pm »
hey ur patch doesnt work i tried it it keeps giving me a error

Kallisto

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2017, 08:44:06 pm »
Pardon my ignorance, but was it only the SEGA CD versions that were butchered? I've only played the PSX versions (I did try to play the PSP version of Silver Star, but was put off by some of the design choices).

Isao Kronos

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #26 on: January 19, 2017, 08:47:49 pm »
hey ur patch doesnt work i tried it it keeps giving me a error

it would help if you went into more details in order to help the patch maker, dawg

Furluge

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #27 on: January 19, 2017, 09:11:07 pm »
Pardon my ignorance, but was it only the SEGA CD versions that were butchered? I've only played the PSX versions (I did try to play the PSP version of Silver Star, but was put off by some of the design choices).

Lunar:SSSC Differences
Lunar 2:EBC Diifferences

I wouldn't worry too much about the translation quality in any of the Sega CD or PS1 versions. Seriously, here is one of the differences from the major category.

Quote from: Lunar:SSSC English Working Designs Translation
"Emperor Ghaleon likes pixies, so he had the Vile Tribe capture us for his garden. It's beautiful and peaceful here, but it's still a prison."

Quote from: Lunar:SSSC English Kizyr's Translation
"We pixies who were living in the Frontier were about to die out. But, Ghaleon helped us."

Other examples from major differences include Myght being described as (wd english former, kizy's latter) a cranky old man with a bo problem vs just being a hermit, or Mia supposing Ghaleon loved Althena vs just stating she thinks he wants to replace him. Minor changes include things like asking Jessica about the giant cannon in Mel's basement vs Talking about turning the mansion into a it into a giant fighting robot.
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vivify93

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #28 on: January 19, 2017, 10:23:17 pm »
Hey Supper, do you want me to proper-case Lunar 1 for you? It looks like the dialogue is in plaintext ASCII. I could do this and you could work on whatever difficulty changes there were.

Edit 1 -



my soul is leaving my mortal body

Edit 2 - OK, so the one thing I don't think I'll be able to do is edit the captions for FMVs, like when Ramus appears. I'm not finding it in plaintext in the ROM, so it has to be compressed or a graphic or something. For some reason, I also can't find the "LEVEL" text next to a character's level amount? But still, I'm sure I can get the bulk of the work done. Holy shit, Lunar 1 has a lot of text.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2017, 11:56:18 pm by vivify93 »
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thainferno305

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #29 on: January 19, 2017, 11:42:13 pm »
Dude ur patch for lunar is not working pls fix it I'm using my delta patch and nothing is working

Isao Kronos

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #30 on: January 19, 2017, 11:44:47 pm »
Dude ur patch for lunar is not working pls fix it I'm using my delta patch and nothing is working

dude ur details are vague and don't help the patch maker fix/help fix whatever issue you're having

thainferno305

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #31 on: January 20, 2017, 12:04:48 am »
xdelta3: not a VCDIFF input: XD3_INVALID_INPUT
xdelta3: normally this indicates that the source file is incorrect
xdelta3: please verify the source file with sha1sum or equivalent

Isao Kronos

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #32 on: January 20, 2017, 12:06:07 am »
whatever file you're trying to patch isn't the right one or something

Midna

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #33 on: January 20, 2017, 01:50:32 am »
I have to say I am a bit put off by all the negativity here. I don't think the localization of Lunar Eternal Blue is what you would call butchered or "j2e or 4kids" based on that catalog of edits. (Linked below) Honestly I think you are going to be hard pressed to find a team that cared as much about the source material and putting out a quality product as WD was. That being said good luck with your project, I hope it turns out to be everything you want it to be. Pointing it out I can see some of the difficulty changes pretty clearly, especially in MP costs. Magic XP to save was clearly a mistake (I would be interested in a patch that just removed this.) as WD admitted themselves in the book for Lunar EBC. The lowercase font does look very nice as well.

I'm with Supper on this one. I don't think less of people for enjoying Working Designs stuff, but looking at the original script, it's clear there was a little too much localization going on. Taking a relatively serious work and trying to add in comedic elements and pop culture references doesn't normally end well, sorry to say (and in that regard, j2e is a very apt comparison). Plus putting your own names before those of the actual developers is pretty arrogant.

SamIAm

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #34 on: January 20, 2017, 02:23:05 am »
I've played both versions of Sega CD Popful Mail several times.

On the subject of difficulty, I think that Working Designs was sort of on the right track, even if they were more motivated by sales than by good design principles. The original Japanese game is so easy that you could literally beat it in a single afternoon. That's not to say the gameplay is somehow bland or monotonous, because jumping around and swatting enemies is still a lot of fun, but to have paid ~$50 for this and have it be over so quickly would have been at least a little disappointing.

The problem is that Working Designs did not adjust the difficultly smartly. When you have full HP in the original game, it will generally take ten to twenty hits to kill you, while in the US version, it only takes three to five. The trouble with this is that the original game was designed for you to have to sustain a hit or two even when you're playing moderately well, and the post-hit invincibility period was kept very short because the original designers were expecting that the player could easily withstand two or three hits in a row.

The US version isn't really challenging so much as it's tedious. You have to save at every turn and reload practically anytime you get hit since the HP loss is so severe. Enemies can corner and kill you in less than two seconds because of the short invincibility period. The fast and somewhat unpredictable boss fights can be maddening because sometimes it's almost impossible to avoid getting hit, and the bosses are especially good at hitting you in quick succession. None of this is a problem in the original game.

If you ask me, the smarter way to make the difficulty higher would have been to make it take six to ten hits to kill you, lengthen the invincibility period enough to make it easier to retreat after one hit, and maybe restrict saving to certain areas only.

The translation is a whole other can of worms. On one hand, you might be surprised at how many of the jokes actually weren't from Working Designs. NPC guards being inept, Gaw being a fish-junkie, dwarf beards being the "old look", Venuncio's crazy-long name, the elder-dwarf falling asleep mid-sentence...the original game had plenty of jokes. On the other hand, even though they added a lot of questionable material on their own, I think there is something to be said for the way Working Designs got across the wacky, don't-take-this-seriously spirit of the original, which may not have happened if they had done a really straight translation.

No translation is perfect, just like no map-projection is perfect, but for what Popful Mail is in terms of story, I think Working Designs's translation is an example of a successful attempt at this particular kind of approach.

Now, if anybody ever wants to take care of the hacking for a relatively straight retranslation, whether for the Sega CD version or one of the others, I would be first to volunteer to help with the translation itself. I've been working on the Legend of Xanadu games on PC Engine, which are by the same director (well, the first one, anyway), and I absolutely love Popful Mail's old-school Falcom charm.

Anyway, good on the OP for making this patch.  :beer:
« Last Edit: January 20, 2017, 08:25:01 am by SamIAm »

Midna

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #35 on: January 20, 2017, 04:27:48 am »
Yeah, generally speaking, the less serious the game the better a comical script rewrite will go over. It's why, say, the Mario RPG's and Splatoon are beloved, but so many people think the localization of Fire Emblem Fates is horrible garbage.

Magma Dragoon

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #36 on: January 20, 2017, 12:32:05 pm »
Please work on Exile Wicked Phenomenon next.

Supper

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #37 on: January 20, 2017, 04:15:28 pm »
Hey Supper, do you want me to proper-case Lunar 1 for you? It looks like the dialogue is in plaintext ASCII. I could do this and you could work on whatever difficulty changes there were.

Thanks, but I'm fine with doing it myself, honestly. I've been using some tools I made to make it easier (exporting dialogue to text files for easier editing, automatic case conversion while preserving capitalization of certain words, etc.). I'll probably need to adapt them a bit for anything TSS does differently from EB, but it's a lot less tedious than trying to do it directly with a hex editor.

No idea about captions (honestly, it's been years since I played the game and I don't even remember that part), but if the format is anything like EB, they're probably just premade graphics stored in the cutscene itself.

xdelta3: not a VCDIFF input: XD3_INVALID_INPUT
xdelta3: normally this indicates that the source file is incorrect
xdelta3: please verify the source file with sha1sum or equivalent

Yeah, your ISO doesn't match mine. Check the readme for information on how to verify the MD5 sum of the ISO -- if it doesn't match, you can try converting it from BIN/CUE using a different program, or using an ISO or BIN/CUE that was produced by a different ripping program.

Please work on Exile Wicked Phenomenon next.

One at a time, one at a time...

RE: discussion of Working Designs' various practices, I absolutely respect the work they put into producing their versions of the games -- it certainly took more effort and creativity to rewrite Lunar than it would have to do a typical "straight" translation of the era -- but at the end of the day, rewrites aside, they were basically making "Hardtype" ROM hacks and releasing them as if they were the original game. Are they "better" than the originals? Maybe, depending on what you enjoy in a game, but they aren't the same experience at all. I'm making these patches because I want the original experience to be accessible to more people.

The script rewrites are a completely different can of worms that I don't really want to get into, but having extracted and compared the dialogue from the Japanese and English versions of Eternal Blue, I can tell you that the English version changes or makes up a lot of stuff. It's not just the jokes, it's random details all over the place, even though the overall plot is the same. For example, in the Japanese version, Leo's been ordered to kill the "Demon King Lucia" specifically, whereas in the English version he's hunting merely for a nameless "destroyer". Again, putting aside whether the new dialogue is "better" or "worse", it rarely represents the original material except in the broadest strokes. I'll just link you to my writeup at TCRF: https://tcrf.net/Lunar:_Eternal_Blue/Regional_Differences#Dialogue

butane bob

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #38 on: January 20, 2017, 05:28:48 pm »
Thank you for doing these hacks. Does anyone know if there is anyone working on re-translating some of these games?

Furluge

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Re: Un-Worked Designs: Working Designs minus bullshit difficulty
« Reply #39 on: January 20, 2017, 11:22:30 pm »
I'm with Supper on this one. I don't think less of people for enjoying Working Designs stuff, but looking at the original script, it's clear there was a little too much localization going on. Taking a relatively serious work and trying to add in comedic elements and pop culture references doesn't normally end well, sorry to say (and in that regard, j2e is a very apt comparison). Plus putting your own names before those of the actual developers is pretty arrogant.

Everyone is welcome to their opinion, but it is pretty obvious you have an ax to grind for some reason. I am not really sure you would be happy with any translation intended for a mass audience. Having looked over the differences I personally am not bothered by them and I doubt you are going to find anyone beyond real diehards who want everything literaly translated with liner notes being too upset by it.

Again, putting aside whether the new dialogue is "better" or "worse", it rarely represents the original material except in the broadest strokes. I'll just link you to my writeup at TCRF: https://tcrf.net/Lunar:_Eternal_Blue/Regional_Differences#Dialogue

You realize I have already posted links to complete write ups of the differences for all the WD games in this thread? This information has been available for anyone who wants to read it for years. The fact that you are linking me to /another/ writeup shows you aren't actually reading what I'm posting. Why would I need a link to your own personal translation when I already have one from a more trusted source? Also I have to be honest with you, "Maou" vs. "Destroyer" is not the strongest difference you could have gone with there. There's good reason to go with destroyer vs demon king considering the connotations in English. Demon's don't have the same connotation they do in Japanese as they do to an American, largely judeo-christian believing audience.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2017, 11:53:33 pm by Furluge »
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