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Author Topic: I want to make a German translation of Final Fantasy IV, where\'s the script?  (Read 4462 times)

90s Retro Gamer

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How's it going bros.?

I want to translate Final Fantasy IV for the SNES into German. I noticed that there were translations for  (by ManuLoewe) for FFVI and Chrono Trigger, but no FFIV.

First, I want a copy of the English script from J2E's translation. I found this online.
http://fools-gold.org/aaron/j2e%20script,%20edited.html

It's pretty thorough, but it only has the story dialogues, there's no item/monster/spell names for example.

Does anyone know where the FULL script is online.? Perhaps I should contact J2E themselves via e-mail. I would probably need their permission to use their script anyway.

PS: Let's say J2E translations denies my request. I would have to use the original Square 1991 translation. Does anyone know where that is online? Thanks.

April 01, 2015, 11:35:47 am - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
ATTENTION:

www.j2e.org is DEFUNCT! :o

If there's no way to contact this group does that mean using their script is forbidden, since I can't ask for their permission?
Does anyone know the ROM-translating protocol for this case?
« Last Edit: April 01, 2015, 11:35:47 am by 90s Retro Gamer »

VicVergil

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Dunno about the permission part. However, work done by defunct groups or abandoned work often gets picked up for reuse or completion by other people after a while, when asking for permission is no longer possible.

In the case of FF4, Tomato's site (Legends of Localization) goes extensively into detail analyzing how accurate each translation is, and... well, the SNES fan retranslation text quality isn't very ideal, let's say, even though it's definitely really useful, if only for the original difficulty.

And, did you think about the obvious option for reading the text? Why, the ROM itself of course :P
And then it's the usual business

Relative search in the ROM for a certain word appearing in-game
Preleminary table file
Opening ROM with hex editor and table
Completing table file using notepad or WindHex
Adding äöüß... to the font to replace unused JP characters using tile editor, verify they appear in game by modifying some string as a test
Dumping the text from the ROM
Figuring out where pointers are
Text Insertion
...

What's wrong with the GBA German translation?

Bregalad

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The j2e translation is horrible, I said the details in a review left on this site's translation page.

The only way to have a quality translation would be to team up with a Jap->German translator. You could re-use the code for the hadokens to do the umlauts, also, something nobody ever did :(

You could also "re-insert german GBA scrip in the SNES" so that it gets the original speed/responsiveness and graphics with the new text.

mz

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The j2e translation is horrible, I said the details in a review left on this site's translation page.
Link for the lazy: http://www.romhacking.net/reviews/1615/#review
There has to be a better life.

VicVergil

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You could re-use the code for the hadokens to do the umlauts, also, something nobody ever did :(

lol  ;D

I did manage this extraordinary feat before :P However, it's not worth it, because:
a. trying to repurpose dakutens for accents yields ugly results
b1. the dakuten by itself often takes up the space of one character in the case of games relying on 8x8 fonts. Meaning で/ä would be 2 characters. Early Final Fantasy games (MSX, NES FF1) use DTE to make those a single character, but that's not true in general.
b2. alternatively, the dakuten data is stored elsewhere in a hard to figure out format, making text edition very cumbersome

And, while this pseudo-translation practice by itself is despicable, I find the review a bit overly dramatic :P
I mean, the project is a relic of an era where fan-translation was at its baby steps, and the author even admitted to making stuff up (much like SD Snatcher, a very similar other early translation project). And even Square/SCEA is no stranger to making stuff up in translations to make it feel more edgy/faithful (F-bombs and bleeps in FF7's English script are nowhere in the original, for example, and even Square doesn't shy away from taking butchered scripts and rewriting them with made-up additions to feel more "faithful" like in the case of FF6/SoM iOS English/FF4 PS1...).
Considering how the gameplay bits were butchered in the official localization, and the "re-translation" based on the Japanese vanilla rom included the missing stuff in English, it's not totally irredeemable for its time.

(and anyways FF4 GBA with a SNES sound restoration hack is the superior version)

Bregalad

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I agree I was a bit dramatic, but I didn't like the idea of having been "fooled" by the translation's authors (that is, J2E). They may have admitted making stuff up afterwards, but when the hack was released the readme.txt didn't mention anything like they made things up, on the other side, they mentioned doing a "proper retranslation".

Quote
I mean, the project is a relic of an era where fan-translation was at its baby steps,
It's year 2004 we're talking about. Aren't you confusing with the FF5 fan translation from 1997 or so ?

Quote
Meaning で/ä would be 2 characters. Early Final Fantasy games (MSX, NES FF1) use DTE to make those a single character, but that's not true in general.
By 2 characters, do you mean 2 bytes ? Also, it's not because the original game use a lame compression that you should use the same one. DTE with recursivity (one of the byte pairs can point to another pair) usually compress text down to 1/3 of it's original size or less, while "normal" DTE can only compress to 2/3 of its original size, twice as much data. But I agree it's silly to waste 2 characters for a dakuten or umlaut, also I was pretty sure Final Fantasy games do not do this (since it's possible to code all kanas, including dakutens, in a byte).

Quote
(and anyways FF4 GBA with a SNES sound restoration hack is the superior version)
I'm honoured to hear that, but personally I think there is still a few things wrong about the GBA version that aren't related to sound. The worst one is that the game constantly lags and ignore input sometimes, so for example when selecting spells in the menus it is very slow to react. There are also problems with the battle turns, even in the European so-called "fixed" version. I am also sure the lags aren't related to the sound engine, compared to the lags in FF5a and FF6a that could partially be fixed by having a faster sound engine.

I perfectly understand why someone would rather play on SNES for authenticity.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2015, 06:56:00 am by Bregalad »

mziab

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It's year 2004 we're talking about.

Actually, you're off by a good few years:
Quote from: README
FINAL FANTASY IV
RE-TRANSLATION / REVISION v3.21 10th Anniversary Edition [07/03/2001] [M/D/Y]
J2E TRANSLATIONS

So the latest patch was released in 2001. And archive.org shows v2.0 was already available in 2000. In short, FF4 by J2E was still one of the oldest SNES fan translations, as far as jrpgs are concerned.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2015, 06:09:28 am by mziab »

VicVergil

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I agree I was a bit dramatic, but I didn't like the idea of having been "fooled" by the translation's authors (that is, J2E). They may have admitted making stuff up afterwards, but when the hack was released the readme.txt didn't mention anything like they made things up, on the other side, they mentioned doing a "proper retranslation".
I agree  :D Considering that in MW4's 2001 English fan patch, there's a book in the library mentioning Shion's death (MW3's protagonist) that's nowhere in the official English 2012 localization (even looking in the rom's text). And since I'm not comfortable enough to replay the game in Japanese and correctly identify this particular bit of text (the fact that MW4's 2001 English fan patch messed up quite a lot of dialogue pointers doesn't help), this question torments me to this very day

By 2 characters, do you mean 2 bytes ? Also, it's not because the original game use a lame compression that you should use the same one. DTE with recursivity (one of the byte pairs can point to another pair) usually compress text down to 1/3 of it's original size or less, while "normal" DTE can only compress to 2/3 of its original size, twice as much data. But I agree it's silly to waste 2 characters for a dakuten or umlaut, also I was pretty sure Final Fantasy games do not do this (since it's possible to code all kanas, including dakutens, in a byte).
By "normal" DTE you mean a more sensible DTE table? Always amazed me how SoM had a perfectly functional one programmed yet forced the translators not to use it at all, and Chrono Trigger has "CHANCELLOR:", a seldom used word in this form, in its DTE table.
But then they got ridiculously efficient with the DTE in their GBA stuff (Sword of Mana, FF remakes), assigning 2-byte long dte values to hundreds of 3/4-letter groups. It's making handling these impossible for me, as I can't even fathom how to make the table for starters. Even other translations use the (DTE-free, values used for kanji instead) Japanese versions as a base.

90s Retro Gamer

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Dunno about the permission part. However, work done by defunct groups or abandoned work often gets picked up for reuse or completion by other people after a while, when asking for permission is no longer possible.

In the case of FF4, Tomato's site (Legends of Localization) goes extensively into detail analyzing how accurate each translation is, and... well, the SNES fan retranslation text quality isn't very ideal, let's say, even though it's definitely really useful, if only for the original difficulty.

And, did you think about the obvious option for reading the text? Why, the ROM itself of course :P
And then it's the usual business

Relative search in the ROM for a certain word appearing in-game
Preleminary table file
Opening ROM with hex editor and table
Completing table file using notepad or WindHex
Adding äöüß... to the font to replace unused JP characters using tile editor, verify they appear in game by modifying some string as a test
Dumping the text from the ROM
Figuring out where pointers are
Text Insertion
...

What's wrong with the GBA German translation?

I was not aware there was a German version for GBA. I'm still in shock that posters here are saying the J2E was horrible, I would have never known.