News: 11 March 2016 - Forum Rules

Author Topic: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation  (Read 3911 times)

Jorpho

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RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« on: August 26, 2019, 01:43:40 am »
https://www.pcgamer.com/now-machine-translation-can-translate-emulated-games-while-youre-playing-them/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yij_ydE9vd4

I'm certain something like this must have been done before, but I can't recall it ever being quite so easy.  But then, it's still probably not as easy as this video would suggest.
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julayla

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2019, 09:09:11 am »
I wouldn't mind trying it out when I get the chance. I wanted to see what the translation of the Stars Sufami Turbo rom would look like

nesrocks

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2019, 09:47:46 am »
This is fantastic.

Cyneprepou4uk

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2019, 09:58:38 am »
Sweet  >:D

Chronosplit

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2019, 10:35:51 am »
FYI for mobile:

1. Mesen appears to have integrated the touchscreen zapper too.
It shows no crosshair, but it does respond to my taps. Libretro's announcement only says FCEUmm.
2. Read this, it's important and may save you some pain. https://www.libretro.com/index.php/retroarch-1-7-8-important-changes-for-people-using-the-google-play-build/
3. You may just need to delete the app's data or reinstall.  It happens.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2019, 10:54:25 am by Chronosplit »

aqualung

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2019, 12:35:17 pm »
I've seen the video and the results are certainly good, but, as I've already commented in that video, there are certain things I'm not sure how it would be handled. For instance:

Sometimes, in rpgs, there are really long sentences which need to be printed in chunks one after the other, in more than one text box. If that system only translates what is currently shown in the screen, an accurate translation of the entire sentence would be difficult or not possible at all.


As a side note, I've been thinking for a few weeks now about a system that would be a mix of Clyde Mandellin's Wanderbar and the one shown in this video. Wanderbar grabs the translated text from a html file and shows every line of text in a separate window, and it would be great if, instead of that, the translated text could be shown in an additional layer just on top of the original box with Japanese text. You could even have a key mapped to a function that makes the layer with the translation visible and invisible at your own will.

The text could work the same way as Wanderbar already does: you have a text file in a specific format, be it html, xml, json, etc, and we could add some metadata such as position X and Y of the text window, background color and transparency, width and height, line ID of the original Japanese text, and of course the translated text itself.

I know, it would be quite some work to implement such functionality in an emulator (believe me, I would implement it myself right now if I had the skills), but it would make translating games a lot easier, as romhackers would not have problems with having to expand the rom for translated text to fit, having overflows and unexpected bugs, etc, because the rom wouldn't be altered in any way. You're just showing text in an additional layer.

What do you think?
« Last Edit: August 26, 2019, 12:43:50 pm by aqualung »

Cyneprepou4uk

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2019, 01:02:18 pm »
This is for regular players. A romhacker would find a better way for translating text that doesn't appear on the screen in a single sentence.

If you mean they don't have to translate games since that new feature exists (even with your modifications), I doubt they are gonna stop.

Chronosplit

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2019, 02:28:25 pm »
If you mean they don't have to translate games since that new feature exists (even with your modifications), I doubt they are gonna stop.
I completely agree.  As Tomato has also demonstrated in an article or two this type of translation still has a long way to go to be perfect.  Not to mention real consoles or anything outside of RA (a lot of people prefer standalone, and they usually have perfectly good reasons for doing so).

If anything at all, this could be the last nail in the coffin for completely machine-based translation hacks like Pokemon TCG2 (which is now getting a non-machine translation IIRC).  But even then, I think we'll still see the odd hack that replaces text with a funny machine translation result.  Like what SMRPG got.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2019, 02:38:06 pm by Chronosplit »

Spooniest

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2019, 04:27:22 pm »
I did watch the demonstration video for this a couple of weeks back. I only recall (jokingly) thinking that now there's a link between Mega Man 4 and Phantasy Star II because Mega Man is described as being "equipped with the powerful Nei Mega Buster."
Yamero~~!

Tomato

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2019, 04:48:30 pm »
As a side note, I've been thinking for a few weeks now about a system that would be a mix of Clyde Mandellin's Wanderbar and the one shown in this video. Wanderbar grabs the translated text from a html file and shows every line of text in a separate window, and it would be great if, instead of that, the translated text could be shown in an additional layer just on top of the original box with Japanese text. You could even have a key mapped to a function that makes the layer with the translation visible and invisible at your own will.

The text could work the same way as Wanderbar already does: you have a text file in a specific format, be it html, xml, json, etc, and we could add some metadata such as position X and Y of the text window, background color and transparency, width and height, line ID of the original Japanese text, and of course the translated text itself.

I know, it would be quite some work to implement such functionality in an emulator (believe me, I would implement it myself right now if I had the skills), but it would make translating games a lot easier, as romhackers would not have problems with having to expand the rom for translated text to fit, having overflows and unexpected bugs, etc, because the rom wouldn't be altered in any way. You're just showing text in an additional layer.

I've actually been upgrading some Wanderbar stuff lately, for example I can now open multiple HTML windows (of any given size) at will as needed via Lua, instead of just one. I was thinking of allowing HTML to be displayed directly on top of the emulator's main window too, but I haven't seen how feasible it is yet.

mkwong98

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2019, 02:55:57 am »
I know, it would be quite some work to implement such functionality in an emulator (believe me, I would implement it myself right now if I had the skills), but it would make translating games a lot easier, as romhackers would not have problems with having to expand the rom for translated text to fit, having overflows and unexpected bugs, etc, because the rom wouldn't be altered in any way. You're just showing text in an additional layer.

What do you think?

You can do something like this in Mesen using HDNes graphics pack. By setting up conditions to check for text graphics at certain location on the screen, you can identify which string is being displayed. Then instead of replacing it with HD graphics, you can replace it with an image of the translated text. This won't work for strings containing dynamic names but the benefit is that it doesn't require rom hacking.

peixemacaco

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2019, 04:34:04 am »
Sorry Jorpho for the new topic, didn't searched before post....  :banghead:

As people commented here , this new retroarch translation it´s not as perfect as a proper translation of an inhabitant of some country.

And now in the very beginning is intended to only japanese translation...

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win3x

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2019, 01:26:35 pm »
This might be a good way to jump-start full translation patches.  Go through the game with the AI service also dumping all of the text to a file, then go back and clean up the errors and polish the script before inserting it the traditional way.

Jorpho

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2019, 06:35:28 pm »
Go through the game with the AI service also dumping all of the text to a file, then go back and clean up the errors and polish the script before inserting it the traditional way.
Perhaps, but by the time one has figured out how to "insert the script the traditional way", one is probably already in a position to dump the script.
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cccmar

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2019, 05:27:08 am »
Inserting the script is usually the difficult part, not dumping it (unless it's stored in some odd way, like in CHR ROM for many Culture Brain's games, or when there's compression involved). Besides, this would probably work much better for games with lots of kanji. Think PC-98 and such. This technology has ways to go, but in some decades it may become decent. It would be great if they focused on Japanese translation tools like that, seeing that the vast majority of games requiring translation are made in Japan. 

Cristal

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #15 on: August 31, 2019, 10:56:21 pm »
As a side note, I've been thinking for a few weeks now about a system that would be a mix of Clyde Mandellin's Wanderbar and the one shown in this video. (...)

I thought of something similar as well. It'd not be very different from stuff like YouTube's "Add new subtitles or CC" feature. I.e. replacing unreliable automated translations with human made ones.

No need to hack the ROM directly to play such translations, which in turn means no more need to worry about character limit, bugs, or whatever other problems that may arise as a result of romhacking.

It'd also be an alternative way for people to play those translations that had their scripts fully translated for a while, but have been stuck in limbo/abandoned due to technical difficulties in the hacking process (Romancing SaGa 2 comes to mind).

Psyklax

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Re: RetroArch 1.7.8 introduces integrated machine translation
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2019, 12:38:23 pm »
My two cents...

I honestly don't believe machine translation will ever beat a real good human translation, especially one involving a native of the language who understands the layers of meaning involved in any kind of prose. Of course, if the problem to be solved is "where's the attack button" or some such, machine translation could be useful. Still no substitute, but useful.

As previously mentioned, I don't think something like this is particularly useful to a ROM hacker: there may be plenty of text that you can't even find because it's in some obscure part of the game, so traditional text dumping is still the way to go. Don't get me wrong, Google Translate has helped me enormously with Japanese, especially how I can take a photo of a sentence with a bunch of kanji and it will understand it. Looking up kanji manually is something I wish on nobody.

So, I'd love to try this out, and I can see that it'll be super useful, but give me a well-made fan translation any day. :)