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Atlus we need to talk about the Persona 5 localization...

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Ferrio

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Jun 7, 2004
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Missing subtitles? I was planning on using the Japanese voices, so what's the issue here? (I'm mostly in the dark, so I'm asking out of genuine ignorance).

Cutscenes? Battle text? I don't care about the latter but the former having no subtitles would be annoying and sort of defeat dual audio for a portion of the game.

Cutscenes, battle text, random chatter you name it. Mostly of background characters, but there's been a few times it was the only characters on the screen talking and no text.
 

Gestahl

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When you see "it can't be helped" or "as expected" (which I know for a fact is in this translation a lot) in any of these kind of clunky translations it's almost always two very specific Japanese phrases. I was just making fun of that through piggybacking off your post
 

Venfayth

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I've been playing for about 6 hours. I keep noticing it as well. It's a little distracting, as is the extremely bizarre decision by the VA directors to intentionally mispronounce "Sakamoto" and "Takamaki".

They've said IIRC the name pronunciations were to sound more natural to English speakers, but based on the rest of the text localization clearly that isn't a consistent philosophy.
 

squall23

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Of course, Nier apparently did the traditional thing you do if you hand the game to 8-4 (or any localisation house) and want good results, which is to say "capture the essentials and the spirit of what they're saying, but don't worry too much about the specifics"

Not only am I OK with this, but I applaud them for it.
 

LordKano

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When you see "it can't be helped" or "as expected" (which I know for a fact is in this translation a lot) in any of these kind of clunky translations it's almost always two very specific Japanese phrases. I was just making fun of that through piggybacking off your post

Oooh I didn't know that. Now that you say it, they use these sentences quite a lot in anime fan subs or JRPGs.
 

aspiegamer

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Nov 10, 2013
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A few hours in... there are a few word substitutions I think are odd, but the style is a style. Shrug. Velvet Room quotes I'm going to toss out. Isn't a lot of this up to how literal a translation you want to take from the original Japanese, and the level of formality involved? Does give me the impression the "lead" on the translation was not a native English speaker, though, not that that's a crime.

Maybe it's a "what if we were extremely exact in our translation of dialogue without taking many liberties to smooth it out"?
 

singhr1

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May 30, 2014
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I am not a native speaker so feel free to disregard my opinion, but these sentences all sound weird to me.

No one IRL says "answer your expectations" right?
No one IRL says "if ruin can be stopped" right?
Other two sentences are grammatically OK, but they sound unnatural. Not really like everyday speech said by native speakers.



OMG I would love to play that!

The first two examples in the OP are by far the worst offenders using words and phrases that are completely odd and irregular for high schoolers, even the most high falutin
 
Jun 1, 2016
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Those lines are really bad, but how indicative are they of the overall quality?

The fact that those are voiced, though... someone in the studio really should've gone "hang on a minute". Also the second one is straight up grammatically incorrect. It should say "didn't you" not "haven't you".
 

Cloukyo

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Aug 30, 2012
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I'm waiting for one of the characters to say "I must protect her smile" or "consider the following..."
 
Feb 22, 2011
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I'm not native English-spoken, but I find the translation good and updated in terms of slang. I understand those who find the sentence structure wierd, though.
 

Pachimari

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Apr 28, 2007
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Ann's voice actress mentioned it, but apparently AtlusJP were the ones that specially requested for it to be pronounced that way

How are they pronounced?

I just say Ta-ka-ma-ki and Sa-ka-mo-to directly with no silent h or anything.
 

Ken

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May 27, 2010
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The first two examples in the OP are by far the worst offenders using words and phrases that are completely odd and irregular for high schoolers, even the most high falutin

idk if the first two are by high schoolers

might be the velvet room inhabitants
 

Lusankya

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I hate how they still have honourifics in English dubbing. I'm sure they got rid of that in Catherine so why is it back :(

Having someone say stuff like -san and -chan in English will always be awkward.

I don't see a problem there. All my Japanese collegues are calling me "my name-san" when we're having a conversation in English.
 

TissueBox

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Nov 10, 2015
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So far I think it's alright but sure it's not as sound as it reasonably could be, pedigree taken into account. However I feel they pass the comprehension test well enough, 'specially in the moment.
 

squall23

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Jun 27, 2007
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I am not a native English speaker but I don't see anything wrong with it?
There's nothing wrong with any of the screenshots. They're all pretty much valid. The problem is nobody actually speaks like that in real life.
 

singhr1

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May 30, 2014
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idk if the first two are by high schoolers

might be the velvet room inhabitants

Oh?? Then having context to these lines is important. Having fictional/mythical characters speaking like a doofus is not the same as having those speaking in the real world.

Like Igor or the Elizabeth-equivalents speaking like some sort of wordsmith(s) wouldn't be surprising.
 

duckroll

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idk if the first two are by high schoolers

might be the velvet room inhabitants

Yeah it's Igor. The vocabulary is acceptable for the character but I think the persistent issue I keep seeing is how awkward all the sentence flow is. Regardless of character. Really weird.

They are definitely Carolin and Justine and I am sure they're supposed to sound that way.

Oh, Igor's new thralls?
 

AniHawk

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Jun 7, 2004
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Well, 3/31 is the end of fiscal year, the western release should count in next fiscal year
Asia/CN version came out at 3/23 , I guess that they just balance fiscal report as how BNEI deal with dark souls 3

it doesn't. digital sales, sure, but as long as retailers buy games in the fiscal year, they're booked for the fiscal year. otherwise, the delay would have been for a lot longer - june at the earliest if they wanted something for the quarter, for instance.

i think politics are getting to be difficult for atlus. they're slowly turning into sega of america, and there was probably a lot of pressure to live up to expectations. they're not going to be able to get titles like a digital-only ps vita exclusive like caligula anymore when they have stuff like valkyrie revolution, persona, and yakuza to take care of.
 

Rurunaki

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The first two examples in the OP are by far the worst offenders using words and phrases that are completely odd and irregular for high schoolers, even the most high falutin

Those are Igor's lines I believe. Velvet room denizens have their distinct type of dialogue. Even the 2 thralls have their own dialogue "character."
 

Lusankya

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There's nothing wrong with any of the screenshots. They're all pretty much valid. The problem is nobody actually speaks like that in real life.

Then at least the first two screens are totally fine as the characters speaking those lines are not even humans.
 

Cloukyo

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Aug 30, 2012
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I'm getting spoiled by xseed stellar translations by comparaison.

We've had some stellar translations in the past that people should be following in general imo.

In recent days I'd say Yakuza 0 was absolutely excellent, a clearly japanese setting but brilliant writing somehow.

9S in Nier was an amazing mix of great dialogue and brilliant acting which will kinda just make other localisations seem mediocre for quite a while
 
Oct 24, 2014
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I think what's worse is the amateurish way they try to emphasize words in their recent localizations, i.e. "This is MY case." That's what we have the voice actors for: To emphasize the delivery of words. It's distracting and disrupting when they do this in games with only text, and downright silly when done in games with voice actors that are already doing this for them. But even without voice actors, it's still the kind of thing that should be discarded from habit after leaving middle school, as it forces the reader to stop and look at this big word you've jammed in for them to gawk at as it lies in the middle of your sentence like a speed bump, jolting them out of any immersion and flow that they may have been in.
 

artsi

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Apr 7, 2014
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Doesn't the second line also have a grammar error?

"But today, you entered a partnership with someone who awoke to the same power, haven't you?"

shouldn't it be

"But today, you have entered a partnership with someone who awoke to the same power, haven't you?"

or

"But today, you entered a partnership with someone who awoke to the same power, didn't you?"
 

Venfayth

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Apr 11, 2011
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It just points to a confused (or clumsy) localization if these lines are being nearly literally translated and yet they have names being specifically pronounced incorrectly, presumably to make them sound better to English speakers.

I should say for me personally this isn't a huge deal - I can live with it - it's not as though I'm unable to enjoy the game. It's just that as an English speaker who cannot speak Japanese but has consumed enough baseline translations in low tier Japanese games and anime - these things really stick out. Play through Fate Stay Night and count how many times you read "murderous intent". It's just a bit distracting.

edit: "I've read murderous intent once so far in P5 also, just saying!"
 

KORNdoggy

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Sep 20, 2013
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they read ok to me. not perfect or anything, but it's not like they're not understandable. i've seen SO much worse.
 

SilentRob

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May 27, 2015
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Yeah, reading this after playing through Nier: Automata is incredibly jarring. Immediatly noticed it, too.
 

Murkas

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Jan 17, 2011
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Catherine took place in the US.

A lot of games take place in Japan with Japanese characters that don't have honourifics though in their English dub/text.

I don't see a problem there. All my Japanese collegues are calling me "my name-san" when we're having a conversation in English.

The way I see it, would this confuse someone who has no knowledge of Japanese culture playing the game (or rather, someone who has never watched a badly fansubbed anime)? That's how I see localising.
 

Thud

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Jul 3, 2012
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Oh?? Then having context to these lines is important. Having fictional/mythical characters speaking like a doofus is not the same as having those speaking in the real world.

Like Igor or the Elizabeth-equivalents speaking like some sort of wordsmith(s) wouldn't be surprising.

Elizabeth was pretty much struggling with words and her speech was reflecting that. The jumps in her logic may have been hard to follow due to translation errors, but it gets the spirit across.
 

Tanis

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Jun 17, 2014
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How are they pronounced?

I just say Ta-ka-ma-ki and Sa-ka-mo-to directly with no silent h or anything.

I'm curious about this too.

The only real clanger I can remember is from Persona 3 pronouncing Natsuki as Nat-suki which I can at least see as an easy mistake to make.
 

Protome

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Jul 23, 2011
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Yeah, reading this after playing through Nier: Automata is incredibly jarring. Immediatly noticed it, too.

Yep, we've had so many good localizations this year already, it makes mediocre ones like this stick out even worse.

Feels very much like it stuck too close to the Japanese, which is a sign of a bad localization despite what certain parts of the internet would argue.
 

MoonFrog

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Jul 25, 2015
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Cutscenes, battle text, random chatter you name it. Mostly of background characters, but there's been a few times it was the only characters on the screen talking and no text.
Thanks. We'll see how it goes. If I found P3/P4 (PS2) awkward to hear at times in English, sounds like that'd be worse here, so I was really looking forward to dual audio. I'll probably still do it, but this is sad.
 
Oct 31, 2015
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As someone who speaks English natively, I've yet to find myself confused or off-put by any of the localization thus far.

I did see Anthony Burch go off about it on twitter earlier tonight, though.

I acknowledge it as an issue for some people, but I'm kind of failing to understand exactly why it is turning into such a sour point for some people... Nothing strikes me as inherently negative about any of it so far.

Examples in OP either strike me as the cryptic manner in which I expect otherworldly beings to speak in the SMT/Persona context, and the regular speech feels like my perception of Japanese speech... Which, perhaps, is influenced by exposure to a wider range of bad localization that I've since normalized in my perception of Japanese-to-English speech habits?
 

Hoo-doo

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Sep 29, 2011
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Wait, you've not actually played the game yet?

I think it's part of the game's charm. P3 and P4 had some clunky-ass lines too but that didn't make the games any less stellar.
Also, the Igor quotes are pretty much always needlessly obtuse and weird. It's part of the character.
 
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