RPG Tsukuru 4 is a part of the RPG Tsukuru series in Japan, developed by Agetec. The series was brought over to the USA, and localized as "RPG Maker". The US localized console titles ranged from RPG Maker 1 through 3, for the PlayStation 1 & 2. Also part of the series are the PC RPG Makers - including the infamous illegal translation of RPG Maker 2000 & 2003. But, more recently, Agetec has released RPG Maker XP and VX for the PC in the USA, and, in Japan only, RPG Maker DS.
RPG Tsukuru 4, for the PlayStation 1, was the only one in the series of console games not localized for the USA. And, naturally, it's the single best entry in the console series.
Agetec has no intention of localizing RPGT4, but I do.Goals:
- A translation patch that allows people who have legally purchased RPG Tsukuru 4 to patch a disc image of the software and play the game in English.
- A document that explains the process of translating a PSX game, using RPGT4 as an example.
- A functional, effective, online collaborative translation system.
I started this project almost a year ago, and began translating and updating the data files immediately. After a couple weeks working on it, I had to drop the project and pretty much vanished from the internet due to work commitments.
I'm back now and am starting up the project again, hoping to get it largely done by the end of the year (*fingers crossed*).
So far I have around a hundred or so bits of text translated (maybe more). But I've gone through pretty much all the basic text, with the longer more complicated text untranslated. Since I have nearly zero proficiency with Japanese, I have been relying on my experience with the series, Google Translate, and members of the RPG Maker community to provide translations.
Most recently I have programmed an online collaborative translation system that allows multiple people to contribute translations, make comments, classify text bits, etc. I have a few people, members of the RPG Maker community, volunteering their time to go through all of the extracted text and translate the game.The Online Translation System:
This system was programmed by me in about 4 days, so it's still very rough. But so far it's proving to be a valuable tool in the translation effort, and I think that there is a lot of potential.
Using the system people can currently:
- See a list of all extracted text
- Vote up/down pieces of source text as either being good text or gibberish data (e.g. parts of a pointer table that got extracted, data, anything that is not text)
- Submit translations
- Vote translations up/down
- Comment on translations
- View recent comments on your submitted translations
- Search translations
- See all the details associated with a piece of source text (e..g pointer location, pointer value, text location, memory address)
- View near-by text to help establish the context of a piece of source text
- Confirm & Finalize translations
The time I have to work on this project is limited. But, ideally, I would like to significantly refine this system. I'd also like to add the following features:
- Upload screenshots
- Tag text
- Classify text by screen appearance (e.g. main menu, new monster screen, magic creation screen)
- "link" text/submit relationships between text (e.g. text A's translation is dependent on text B, text C is the same as text D)
- View the history of a translation as it evolved
- Track text location/pointer changes (e.g. some piece of text needs to be moved to a new location, the system will be able to track the original location as well as the new location)
- Better comment tracking & threading
- Automatic text extraction & insertion
- Maybe more
It is a goal of mine to get the system to a point where I can release the source code so that it can be adapted and used by others - but that's a long way off.Obstacles
- The English font spacing is wrong - it's twice what it should be.
- Many of the menu/dialog boxes are too small, and English translations overflow
- There is little room for English translations, and a lot of the text has to be shortened to fit in the data files (e.g. "Castle" becomes "Csl")
I am hoping that it is within my ability to adjust the font spacing and extend menu/dialog boxes. I understand the principal behind it, and the technique, but have yet to do it successfully.
Getting enough room in the data file for translations to fit isn't an issue - it's simple enough to move the text to a new location in the file, recalculate the pointer, and update the entry in the pointer table; which I have done successfully (e.g. moving "Csl" to a new location, extending it to "Castle", then updating the pointer and have it appear properly in-game).Links:RPGT4 Translation DatabaseProject thread at RPG Maker MagazineProject thread at RPG Maker PavilionScreenshots:
These were taken about a year ago, after a couple hours/days of working on it. I haven't done much work on the actual data files since then, and have instead focused on the theory and implementation of the online collaborative translation system.
The game data load/save screen:
A memory card interface:
The "Utility" screen:
Loading custom resources (including the option to import music!):
Special Skills/Abilities naming screen (I'm certain some of my translations are wrong, but I'll revise that later):