With Queue's blessing, I am creating a dedicated thread for the SAP.
The purpose of the SAP is a thorough relocalization of Seiken Densetsu 2 AKA Secret of Mana. In the 27 years since the game's release, there has been a desire for a more satisfying realization of the script. The 2018 remake followed Ted Woolsey's original English translation more than most realize, and left out a host of nuances that were present in the original.
I want to stress that we are trying to create the best script possible while centering the original, so this is not a "pure" translation per se. First, there are some aspects of existing translations, such as Woolsey's, that provide additions or interpretations of the original that are memorable and work well, and a few will be retained. Additionally, there are a few places where the original was unclear or comes off rather awkward when translated into English. The characters also speak in different dialects and styles, and decisions were made that provided each character with an effective voice.
The "augmentation" part comes from some additional lines and possibly small events that will flesh out the text. The philosophy is "less is more" here. Whatever is used should blend in smoothly. Certain guides in the Japanese language have some additional lore on the characters, and there are also the inn conversations from the remake, as well as the deleted prologues and side quests. Some of this material is superfluous, repetitive, and frankly uninspiring (probably why so much went unused). But a line here and there, some extra humor, some extra info on a character, story development, etc., may find its way into the script.
The project was divided into four phases: lining up existing translations, creating a "base" retranslation, identifying places for augmentation, and then inserting the text.
Phase 1 amounted to data entry. The Japanese text was aligned with Woolsey's, the 2018 remake, Reverend Cheddar's spirited partial retranslation from the lparchive.org, and kwhazit's partial retranslation from kwhazit's Oddities.
Phase 2: the initial step was creating a first baseline draft based on the sources above, and dictionaries and translators (I don't speak Japanese). When I had questions, kwhazit was kind of enough to lend time, as well as Zeal, a friend of mine who teaches English in Japan.
After this, we were joined by Taosenai, an East Asian Studies professor with a PhD in Japanese history. He's not only fluent in the language, but is educated on historic and cultural contexts of Japanese texts. (He's also a huge fan of the game). Taosenai and myself are going line by line, creating commentary along the way and are currently about 60% of the way through the script. He is contributing as he can, so it may be a few more weeks before all ~43000 Japanese characters are examined. Soon after, we should have an almost final draft.
Phase 3: Almost all the places for additions have been identified. I'm still waiting on a few guides to arrive from Japan after months of waiting, but I will have a proposal to Queue shortly, and we can figure out what we can and can't do.
Phase 4: A script importation program has already been written, and Queue and myself are working on the logistics. I have already playtested a portion of the first draft.
As of now, we are sticking with the original wide font, which works better than you might think. We'll decide if this needs to be changed later.
The largest translation problem at the moment are what pronouns (if any) to use for Popoie. This has turned into a lengthy discussion, so I will write more on that later.
June 06, 2020, 11:46:24 pm - (Auto Merged - Double Posts are not allowed before 7 days.)
Some comparison screenshots of what we have so far:
Each cannon travel man has a unique laugh. The second two lines will be moved to the next box. GP will still be capitalized; we just have to fix the place it's called from.
The original erroneously gave this line to a guard, not Jema. The 2018 remake changed "king" to "chancellor", which seemed baffling until we found another line that translates as "the Republic's king." Even though this fellow is wearing a crown and robes, the whole point of a Republic is that there's no king anywhere. It makes sense that the Empire has an emperor, Pandora has a king, and Tasnica has a chancellor.