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Prime Blue
Member
(03-21-2011, 03:57 PM)
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I read this story years ago, but iidesuyo recently brought it to my attention in the "mind-blowing video game facts" thread. I thought I'd translate it to English because it is just too hilarious and vivid a story not to spread. ;)

The history behind it: Claude Moyse worked as a German translator for Nintendo of Europe in the 90s and made regular business trips to Japan. Some years ago, he was invited to a chat session from a Nintendo fan site. He had this story to share:

Originally Posted by Claude Moyse

I was at NCL (Nintendo Co., Ltd.) in Japan. I can't even remember why… Anyway, there was this French translator. She was very funny, if not a little strange. She didn't have a clue when it came to video games, but nevertheless, she translated the games for Nintendo France. Anyway, she was the only European woman there at the time and so we spent the evenings together. One evening, we went past a sex shop and she told me "Hey, I still have to get some souvenirs for my coworkers in Paris". So we went into the sex shop.

Just as we entered, of course, all men escaped from the shop in a panic because women really aren't meant to be in Japanese sex shops. The shop owner's face became all pale and he hid behind the counter, completely ashamed. The French woman however ran through the shop, laughing out loud: "Look, Claude. A giant dildo, though the Japanese only have small… And look, here, a gay photo book with sumo wrestlers who are sticking burning candles up their butts. I gotta give that to my gay coworker!" From time to time, some new customers entered the shop but escaped backwards in an instant seeing that French woman waving around with a transparent rubber dildo in her hands. Anyway, so she bought the dildo and the gay porn magazine and stashed it all away in her handbag.

So, a small change of scene. Regarding NCL, you'll have to know that they have a very strict and relatively conservative atmosphere there. Like "Bureoucracy, Incorporated". An example: There were three company doorways. Entrance number 1 led through a big lobby with a marble floor. A receptionist was sitting somewhere in a corner and she explained to me that this representative entrace was only for Mr. Yamauchi and his personal guests. All the other Nintendo employees were not allowed to go through this hall. Entrace number 2 was for the managers and the company executives. And then there was entrace number 3 for all the "normal" people. Work began at 9 a.m. Hundreds of people (the Japanese are punctual) were flowing towards the building. Interesting to note: Managers and "normal" people arrive at different speeds. Managers go more slowly and workers have to hurry up and run faster. Pretty funny to look at. That has something to do with Japanese culture – as an employee, you have to show how dedicated you are and that you're below the managers in the hierarchy. Anyway, once you're in the building, you have to change your clothes first. For men, there's beige Nintendo overalls, for women, there's beige blouses. The offices itself look like battery cages, even Mr. Miyamoto had a small slot in an open-plan office…although he'd probably have gotten more room (and has gotten by now), but back then, he wanted to stay down to the basics. The official working time begins with Mozart's "Eine kleine Nachtmusik". And as if they were robots, everyone begins to work right away, highly concentrated and with an empty expression on their faces.

The French woman and I, we were put in a meeting room, although we were working on different things. I found that very strange, it was almost like some kind of quarantine room for highly contagious Europeans. ;-) And this French woman was really hilarious…she was working on some role-playing game and kept swearing constantly… "To hell with this fucking game…why do I have to think up names for 20 swords? Wouldn't one have been enough?" It was typical video game names for swords, like thieve's sword, hell sword, demon rapier, Excalibur and so on. She just made it "Sword 1", "Sword 2", "Sword 3" etc. We tried to explain to her that it would make no sense that way and that she should be more creative. But her answer always was something like "merde" or "fuck you", all with a French accent, mind you.

I'm trying to remember why I was there, but I don't know. It wasn't because I had to translate a game but because of merchandising for different games. I had to get some approvals on advertisements, posters etc. The person responsible for us was Mr. Tezuka (the producer of the Zelda games), and a lot of other people. Now, I don't know how Mr. Tezuka is in private. During office hours, however, he is dead serious. Safe for a few weird exceptions, as I recall right now – but never mind, that's a different story… ;-) Anyway, so we had lunch hour (heralded by Mozart's "Eine kleine Nachtmusik") and we sat in the meeting room with Tezuka and some others. It was time for some small talk. Mr. Tezuka asked the French woman how she liked Kyoto and what we did the evening before. And she said "Oh, it's great here. We've been to a sex shop…" Followed by an embarassed and unbelieving silence from the Japanese employees. Then she opened her handbag and took out the porn magazine. "Look what I found. They have candles in their asses. Is that what you do around here? And here, this dildo. Cool, ain't it?" It is such a pity that I didn't have a camera with me that moment. I've never before seen such faces, and never have since then. Mr. Tezuka's face got a green tint and he took a few steps back, as if she was possessed. That was cool. Anyway, the story ends on a tragic note, almost like one of the great tragedies. After she had returned from the business trip to France, she was fired one week later. Without any special explanations given. I really think it was because of Mr. Tezuka. Mr. Miyamoto would have had more humor, for sure.

[IMG]http://i54.************/1zecltf.jpg[/IMG]
sprsk
force push the doodoo rock
(03-21-2011, 04:02 PM)
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It may also might have been because she wanted to name all the swords "Sword 1" "Sword 2" "Sword 3"
Lee N
Membre
(03-21-2011, 04:03 PM)
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Originally Posted by sprsk

It may also might have been because she wanted to name all the swords "Sword 1" "Sword 2" "Sword 3"

I was just about to post this...
BocoDragon
or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Realize This Assgrab is Delicious
(03-21-2011, 04:08 PM)
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Thanks for translating! I saw that link to the story recently but I didn't want to bother with my poor French.

Nintendo HQ sounds utterly insane, btw.
Prime Blue
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(03-21-2011, 04:11 PM)
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Originally Posted by BocoDragon

Nintendo HQ sounds utterly insane, btw.

I think this took place sometime in the mid-90s. Maybe it has changed. ...Nah. ;)
Eteric Rice
Junior Member
(03-21-2011, 04:14 PM)
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When was this? I wonder if Nintendo is still operated like it used to be? XD
Deku
Banned
(03-21-2011, 04:18 PM)
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It referenced Yamauchi's personal entrance.

You can guess it happened before 2003.
Boney
Sucking and blowing™
(03-21-2011, 04:26 PM)
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Holy shit at the 3 door bit.

And holy shit at the lady bwahahaha!
Prime Blue
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(03-21-2011, 04:45 PM)
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Originally Posted by Deku

It referenced Yamauchi's personal entrance.

You can guess it happened before 2003.

If it was the person I suspect it to be, then it was in late 1995.
YianGaruga
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(03-21-2011, 04:55 PM)
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Now I finally know why putting "MOYSE" as the name in Zelda: Link's Awakening made the music all funky.

Also, in the SNES days, Nintendo's German translations (especially of RPGs) were just incredible. Very creative, full of jokes. Made some games very special to me. Seems like Herr Moyse played a big part in that.
Prime Blue
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(03-21-2011, 05:06 PM)
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Originally Posted by YianGaruga

Also, in the SNES days, Nintendo's German translations (especially of RPGs) were just incredible. Very creative, full of jokes. Made some games very special to me. Seems like Herr Moyse played a big part in that.

He is hated by many, but I still regard him as being of paramount importance to German video game writing. Not necessarily because he provided the most accurate translations (which was impossible anyway since he did not speak any Japanese and would often work from preliminary English scripts), but because he had this very keen sense for the language (alongside the rest of the Club Nintendo magazine staff of writers many of whom worked on the translations of the 90s). Moyse made Ocarina of Time to the classic it is today in Germany, the dialogue and narrative is timeless in any sense of the word and puts the English version to shame.
luffeN
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(03-21-2011, 05:27 PM)
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Cool girl.
Sammy Samusu
Banned
(03-21-2011, 05:37 PM)
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"To hell with this fucking game…why do I have to think up names for 20 swords? Wouldn't one have been enough?"

This bitch will not come for my JRPGs like that.
MisterHero
Super Member
(03-21-2011, 05:42 PM)
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yeah she wasn't funny
TheSeks
Blinded by the luminous glory that is David Bowie's physical manifestation.
(03-21-2011, 05:48 PM)
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Originally Posted by sprsk

It may also might have been because she wanted to name all the swords "Sword 1" "Sword 2" "Sword 3"

This is true, but you have to remember: This is Nintendo in the 80's/early 90's. I wouldn't be surprised if the conservative Japanese ("ZOMG WOMEN IN THE SEX SHOP! *runs*" :lol ) toward her display and being upfront like that caused her to be fired.
GothPunk
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(03-21-2011, 05:51 PM)
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What a great story, thanks for going to the trouble of translating it OP.
shaowebb
The Keeper and Holy Guardian of Captain Badass
(03-21-2011, 05:52 PM)
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She would've been a fun coworker, but a lousy employee. I'm too serious about quality so I would've either fired her or shoved her into some sort of role that has no creative input.
PowerSmell
Member
(03-21-2011, 05:59 PM)
Sounds like she had a lot of pride in her work.
Desi
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(03-21-2011, 06:07 PM)
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I am not surprised. The average RPG names for weapons are mad corny. Even worst if it was an RPG where the swords might as well be called 1, 2, 3, etc since you upgrade at every new town.
Jackano
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(03-21-2011, 06:15 PM)
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Gotta be Veronique Chantel I think, since it's the only name I was able to remember from video games credits when I was a kid (because it was the only french name in the list). Completely ruin the myth here :lol

Nice one, Prime Blue :lol

Edit: oh, fired... maybe not her so^^"
Pureauthor
(03-21-2011, 06:16 PM)
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Originally Posted by Desi

I am not surprised. The average RPG names for weapons are mad corny. Even worst if it was an RPG where the swords might as well be called 1, 2, 3, etc since you upgrade at every new town.

Yeah, so is sword 17 the one with the auto-ice element forged on, and sword 25 the one that does extra damage to undead enemies, or the other way around?
CO_Andy
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(03-21-2011, 06:16 PM)
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So Moyse is basically the German Victor Ireland?
cosmicblizzard
It's interesting to think about sex with Andy Milonakis
(03-21-2011, 06:17 PM)
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Sounds exactly like how my mom acts.
Jucksalbe
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(03-21-2011, 06:22 PM)
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das spiel war ziemlich zeitgleich mit der englischen version fertig, kam aber erst später in europa auf den markt. man hatte es auf halde übersetzt. genauso wie final fantasy vi, dass dan aber nie erschien. die ganze mühe umsonst.

The SNES version of FF6 was supposed to come out in Europe and was already translated to German? I never knew about that.
Metal B
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(03-21-2011, 06:25 PM)
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Originally Posted by YianGaruga

Also, in the SNES days, Nintendo's German translations (especially of RPGs) were just incredible. Very creative, full of jokes. Made some games very special to me. Seems like Herr Moyse played a big part in that.

Holerö =)
By the way were this Club Nintendo Comic ever released outside of Europe? I mean they always looked like they had a really low production value.
Last edited by Metal B; 03-21-2011 at 06:36 PM.
CrunchyFrog
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(03-21-2011, 06:36 PM)
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hairy pits
Starwolf_UK
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(03-21-2011, 06:51 PM)
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There is another Moyse interview on that site. The google translate really didn't make the sex shop bit make any sense (or maybe I skipped over it due to reading at midnight; I remember the different entrances bit though) so I appreciate the translation. I think the other interview mentions how he hated Sakurai, which is why Kirby is so weird in the German comics...at the same time he liked the Kirby games but hated how badly they sold...

Originally Posted by YianGaruga

Now I finally know why putting "MOYSE" as the name in Zelda: Link's Awakening made the music all funky.

Also, in the SNES days, Nintendo's German translations (especially of RPGs) were just incredible. Very creative, full of jokes. Made some games very special to me. Seems like Herr Moyse played a big part in that.

Its sad for the DX version they kept the code but it plays Tokata's Song instead.

I can't remember if the other interview is why he explained why some parts of the Secret of Mana translation were odd. But basically he had to go to Japan, translate the game script before the game was out in Japan and had a preliminary English translation (I don't know if its the same translation as the English version...we know how little sense that one makes due to English text taking up more space and text compression not being something they did) and so he did one draft, got it running off an EPPROM then played through and re-wrote it as it was making little sense.

Originally Posted by Deku

You can guess it happened before 2003.

Also the entire German PR and Marketing department got fired in 2001 (its in one of the interviews, something to do with declining Pokemon sales). Moyse counted as part of that for some reason. The Club Nintendo magazine I suppose.

Its quite interesting in the 90s Nintendo liked having translators that didn't know Japanese. I know for English translations they would translate back to Japanese to check if its similar. I have a feeling that step might have been skipped when it came to FG (IS were rare...)

Originally Posted by Metal B

By the way were this Club Nintendo Comic ever released outside of Europe? I mean they always looked like they had a really low production value.

They were never released outside Germany from what I can tell. It was very annoying how Germany-centric NOE were in the 90s-early 2000s (you could see in the 500 page manuals that the German could get these magazines etc while all we got was an expensive cheats line*). Nintendo UK has a confusing history (up to 1995 is chronicled in a page of a later issue of Super Play) but IIRC it was an office in Matel, then Bandai then became something called The Games and in 2002 became Nintendo UK.

Anyway, the comics themselves. There was a manga artist shipped out of Japan to work in Germany at NOE headquarters for them (I presume they did the same for the ones in Nintendo Power). I think Moyse did the plots and the artist just drew em'.

*-Actually, I think they did have a Club Nintendo newsletter up to about 1992. It would have maps of a few games (presumebly lifted from NES game atlas & Nintendo power...both things Europe lacked) and a few other bits and pieces. It was basically what America had pre-Nintendo Power only years after Nintendo Power.
Why would you do that?
Member
(03-21-2011, 08:49 PM)
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Originally Posted by Starwolf_UK

Its sad for the DX version they kept the code but it plays Tokata's Song instead.

Why is that sad? It's the only version (besides the Japanese version) where you can actually access Totaka's Song in the game.

Edit: Okay, I've never heard that Moyse song before. That's so awesome. I wonder if it's in the Japanese version.
Prime Blue
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(03-21-2011, 08:53 PM)
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Originally Posted by Metal B

By the way were this Club Nintendo Comic ever released outside of Europe? I mean they always looked like they had a really low production value.

I think you could criticize them for lots of things (most of all, general stupidity), but production value was never one of them. They wrote the stories and scripts themself, then commissioned a Japanese art studio to draw the panels.

[IMG]http://i55.************/240yct3.jpg[/IMG]
[IMG]http://i53.************/nq1nqc.jpg[/IMG]
plagiarize
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(03-21-2011, 08:56 PM)
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bring a porn magazine into work and pass it around at lunch and see if you get to keep your job.

unless you work in the porn industry.
Neuromancer
The Mayuh of f'n Bawston
(03-21-2011, 09:03 PM)
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My main takeaway from this article was that I now want a pair of beige Nintendo overalls.
Cranzor
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(03-21-2011, 09:12 PM)
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I just saw this in a youtube comment.

another fun fact about moyse: when he had to translate "secret of evermore" on the snes nitendo gave him way to much time to do so, so he spent the time after he was already done translating the game with making another pervert version that he put on an pal snes cartridge and that he now stores in his cellar according to an intervie :D

If thats true then that's hilarious.
cosmicblizzard
It's interesting to think about sex with Andy Milonakis
(03-21-2011, 09:14 PM)
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Originally Posted by plagiarize

bring a porn magazine into work and pass it around at lunch and see if you get to keep your job.

unless you work in the porn industry.

Did it last week. Got to keep my job.

My boss is my dad.
Cow Mengde
Junior Member
(03-21-2011, 09:31 PM)
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Originally Posted by Prime Blue

I think you could criticize them for lots of things (most of all, general stupidity), but production value was never one of them. They wrote the stories and scripts themself, then commissioned a Japanese art studio to draw the panels.

[IMG]http://i55.************/240yct3.jpg[/IMG]

Is that Terranigma?
Datschge
Member
(03-21-2011, 09:39 PM)
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^ Yes, that was the comic for Terranigma.

Originally Posted by Jucksalbe

The SNES version of FF6 was supposed to come out in Europe and was already translated to German? I never knew about that.

I think the story was that at the point NOE finally was ready to release it Square was already in the progress of cutting all ties with Nintendo. So NOE "only" got to release the Enix games with whom they already had a contract going which is how Europe got Terranigma while the US didn't.
Cow Mengde
Junior Member
(03-21-2011, 09:44 PM)
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But wait, why would they fire that woman? Doesn't Japan have a holiday where they parade around with a giant dildo?
YianGaruga
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(03-21-2011, 10:59 PM)
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Originally Posted by Metal B

Holerö =)

Exactly. One of the best parts of Lufia II was getting a Holeröschild as a random drop from some lizards.
Jucksalbe
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(03-21-2011, 11:09 PM)
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Originally Posted by Datschge

I think the story was that at the point NOE finally was ready to release it Square was already in the progress of cutting all ties with Nintendo. So NOE "only" got to release the Enix games with whom they already had a contract going which is how Europe got Terranigma while the US didn't.

Considering there were multiple new releases of FF6 and none of Terranigma that's a good thing.
BocoDragon
or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Realize This Assgrab is Delicious
(03-21-2011, 11:11 PM)
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Originally Posted by Jucksalbe

Considering there were multiple new releases of FF6 and none of Terranigma that's a good thing.

All of them were poor... Until the VC version that is.
CO_Andy
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(03-21-2011, 11:12 PM)
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Those comics are drawn awfully similar to the ones we got in NP, but even more tripped out.

Couldn't be coincidence.
synt4x
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(03-21-2011, 11:12 PM)
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So THAT'S why Eine kleine Nachtmusik is in DDR Mario Mix!
[Nintex]
Banned
(03-21-2011, 11:35 PM)
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The stuff about the clothing seems to still hold up today:
Starwolf_UK
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(03-22-2011, 12:02 AM)
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Originally Posted by Datschge

I think the story was that at the point NOE finally was ready to release it Square was already in the progress of cutting all ties with Nintendo. So NOE "only" got to release the Enix games with whom they already had a contract going which is how Europe got Terranigma while the US didn't.

Well Enix ceasing to exist in America was that part (I guess the SNES starting to die out in 1996 kept would-be American publishers away...), this was their swansong in June 1995 (Terranigma was still months away in Japan, let alone Europe):

They were only publisher as well (the developers were Manley and Associates Inc., which was their last game under that name anyway as they got absorbed into EA in 1996 and renamed Electronic Arts Seattle...which got closed in 2002)
Prime Blue
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(03-22-2011, 01:00 AM)
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Originally Posted by Cow Mengde

But wait, why would they fire that woman? Doesn't Japan have a holiday where they parade around with a giant dildo?

We have penis parades in Europe, too. Doesn't mean we attend it with our bosses, though.

Originally Posted by YianGaruga

Exactly. One of the best parts of Lufia II was getting a Holeröschild as a random drop from some lizards.

Haha! I remembered that just now. :D
turk128
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(03-22-2011, 12:13 PM)
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[IMG]http://i56.************/23kzxh0.jpg[/IMG]
djdac
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(03-22-2011, 12:34 PM)
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Well.. is a candle up the butt something they do around there?
ViralMarketingDrone
Banned
(03-27-2011, 07:09 PM)
Just bumping this for the fact that Moyse is an absolute genius and his comics are brilliant, the kind of stuff he slipped under nintendo's radar is amazing.

[img]http://i54.************/vzu5wy.jpg[/img]


[img]http://i54.************/xkvs4y.jpg[/img]

Wendy Koopa smoking near a leaking fueltank and Wario being a satanist, that was while NoA was still busy censoring games for offensive and religious content.
Also franchise crossovers everywhere.
Ellis Kim
Banned
(03-27-2011, 07:35 PM)
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Wow. Those comics are awesome. Holy shit at the chrome pentagram XD

The french lady sounds genuinely hilarious and airy.
ViralMarketingDrone
Banned
(03-27-2011, 09:18 PM)
Those comics were so amazing. It's a shame they fired Moyse because the new management didn't like him.
[IMG]http://i54.************/21j6kp2.jpg[/IMG]
Cipherr
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(03-27-2011, 09:40 PM)
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Originally Posted by TheSeks

This is true, but you have to remember: This is Nintendo in the 80's/early 90's. I wouldn't be surprised if the conservative Japanese ("ZOMG WOMEN IN THE SEX SHOP! *runs*" :lol ) toward her display and being upfront like that caused her to be fired.

Yeah.... ummm, If I had to guess

"Look what I found. They have candles in their asses. Is that what you do around here?"

Then she opened her handbag and took out the porn magazine... And here, this dildo

"To hell with this fucking game…why do I have to think up names for 20 swords? Wouldn't one have been enough?"

But her answer always was something like "merde" or "fuck you", all with a French accent, mind you.

I would go with the as the reason she was fired. You dont get to blanket dumbassery with a description of being 'upfront' and keep your job. That shit seems completely unprofessional, now matter how stuck up the employees there were. She was out of line. It might be a bit easier to think that she wasnt her own worst enemy here if she had at least been doing her job without causing issues and carrying on cranky. But she had a lot of nerve being an ass about something she was getting paid to do.

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