Genders of historical characters?

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Alunissage
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Genders of historical characters?

Postby Alunissage » Sun Mar 15, 2015 12:55 am

This question is primarily for Kizyr, Shiva Indis, Temzin, and anyone else who can read Japanese.

I'm wondering whether some of the historical characters that we speak of as male explicitly have that gender associated with them in Japanese. The main ones I'm wondering about are Dragonmaster Lui (mentioned by name in EB), the other dragonmasters (aside from Alicia and Laticia, who I think are specifically called sisters), and the various dragons.

The Red Dragon appears to be female in all incarnations, since she's given a name of Amelia in some versions of Lunar 1.

Quark refers to his brother dragons, I think, but again I don't know how literal that is. And of course in EB Ghaleon refers to Quark as Nall's father, but that doesn't appear to be literal, since the dragons don't actually reproduce. (I don't think the anomaly of two white dragons at the same time in Lunar 1 is ever explained, is it?)

I feel sure I saw a reference to a Black Dragon being female, but I'm not sure where that was. Probably EBC, unless I'm making it up. Again, don't know what might be a translation artifact and what isn't.

I also wonder about the Star Dragon. Sure, the two transcriptions of his(?) name are Sieg and Zeke, but I don't know how significant that is.

But mainly I want to know about Lui/Louie.

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Temzin
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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Temzin » Sun Mar 15, 2015 4:58 pm

This is a great topic, and sensible---no reason to assume things were "male" when not stated. If you know a specific event where they're mentioned, that's easy to cross-check now via youtube or nico, but if it's in some town's library, that might be harder. I fear Lui may be one of those. What I do remember:

White Dragon: Ghaleon's threat to Nall as regards his "father," while being a very good line, isn't present in the original in any way, as I recall. There's probably a clearer gender reference by Nall or Ramus somewhere in SSS.

Star Dragon/Sieg the Risen: Lucia refers to Sieg as "him" after you win the fight in the mountain pass. This one's pretty clear-cut anyhow: in Japanese, the name Sieg(fried) is transliterated via German phonics to jiiku(furiito). While the "ji" sound is usuallly a stand-in for "zi," making Kizyr's reference on the site to "Zeke" technically work phonetically, the intended name is Sieg.
Last edited by Temzin on Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Alunissage
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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Alunissage » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:51 am

Some stuff is in the EB J to E differences that Kizyr did, since he included screenshots:
http://www.lunar-net.com/eb/eb_diff.php

I don't know if there are direct links to any of the sections, but searching for "Zeon" will get you to the Vane book listing past dragonmasters, and the next book after that is the one with Lui.

There's some dialogue with the Blue Dragon quoted, with some with the Black Dragon just after. Search for "dragons' role".

Dialogue with the Star Dragon: search for "bridge".

(Unfortunately, the EBC J->E differences doesn't include screenshots, so harder to check that one.)

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Shiva Indis » Mon Mar 16, 2015 8:49 pm

This gets tricky since Japanese seldom uses pronouns. Most of what we can say will be based on inference.

For example, in Lunar 2 the Black Dragon has a feminine speech pattern, so the likely intention is that the Black Dragon is female. (Or at least that Black Dragon probably is, because I'm pretty sure that the SSS incarnation has a masculine speech pattern instead.)

The library books are written neutrally, so they lack these sorts of queues.
「まあいいけど。」

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Alunissage
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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Alunissage » Mon Mar 16, 2015 10:38 pm

Cues, you mean? :)

Yeah, I figured that only the characters who actually speak are likely to be of determinate gender. It's not so much that I want to pin down genders for the historical dragonmasters as that I want to know whether there's any reason any of them couldn't be female.

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Leo
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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Leo » Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:32 am

I never considered it outside of Alicia and Laticia. I know I wouldn't mind them doing games for each dragonmaster mentioned.

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Temzin » Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:11 am

Thanks for the pinpointed areas, Alun. As Kizyr correctly has it, Dragonmaster Lui is definitely male...here, he's the Dragonmaster who came together with Althena to the Blue Star, and the mark of whose first step is thought to be somewhere in Lunar. (Side note: I feel like someone here at some point thought this was a playful reference to the original conception of the series as taking place on Earth's moon, and Lui referring to some astronaut. Certainly, the "one small step for man" thing is referenced here, but I could've sworn there was some meaning to this name. Oh well.)

So here we have it based on MCD Eternal Blue:

Dragonmaster Lui: male
Cyclone Zeon: unclear
Iron Fist Loka: unclear
Gold and Silver Sisters Asti and Liza: female
Star Dragon/Sieg the Risen: male

Blue/Black Dragons: not enough data from MCD screenshots (maybe Black Dragon is more clearly feminine in speech in EB remix, but not sufficiently here). I'll look at a video in a week or so to confirm if someone hasn't done it first.

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Alunissage » Tue Mar 17, 2015 5:48 am

Ryousirow Hasukawa said in the interview that's on the main site that the first dragonmaster was Neil and his arms were so strong, in response to being asked if Lunar takes place on our moon. I expect at some point the EB dev team mixed up Neil Armstrong, astronaut, with Louie Armstrong, jazzman.

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Leo » Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:51 pm

If he got his own game, would the opening theme be What A Wonderful World? =P

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Kizyr » Wed Mar 25, 2015 8:25 pm

Temzin and Shiva Indis already answered all of this, but yeah, I have the same conclusions as them. There are some occasions where an explicit gendered pronoun or relationship noun is used ("he" for DM Louie, "sisters" for Alicia/Laticia a.k.a. Asty/Liza) and some others where definitely feminine speech is used (Black Dragon in EB). Otherwise, everything else is left ambiguous.

There is one where in my own translation I made an assumption: Natto, the singing swordsman -- there isn't an explicit "swordsman" / "swordswoman" distinction in the original, so that could go either way. KF

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Temzin » Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:40 am

Thanks, Kiz, I just looked at a video for the Black Dragon sequence, and unlike the neutral screenshots on the site, I see that the full dialogue does make clear that she's a she. (Whatever gender means in dragon terms.) Also just spun through SSS for similar confirmations, often through Nall's dialogue.

Never did I suspect I would be checking dragon genders 20 years after the fact, but it's great to have thought about! Thanks, Alun! So here's about as good a list as I think we can get:

History:
Dragonmaster Lui: male
Cyclone Zeon: unclear
Iron Fist Loka: unclear
Gold and Silver Sisters Asti and Liza: female

SSS:
White Dragon: male (Nall, and I'm almost certain Fidy, though I can't remember an exact line of dialogue)
Red Dragon: female
Blue Dragon: male
Black Dragon: male

EB (MCD):
White Dragon: male
Blue Dragon: leans male, though could be regal old female
Black Dragon: female
Red Dragon: female
Sieg the Risen/Star Dragon: male

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Re: Genders of historical characters?

Postby Sonic# » Thu Mar 26, 2015 2:14 pm

I had always thought the Black Dragon in SSS was female, but I was probably going off of EBC and making the assumption that one would be consistent with the other.

Poring over some of the English dialogue, I don't know how I concluded it within SSS. Laike uses an impersonal pronoun:
All that remains for you now is to meet the Black Dragon and gain
its prize. Once you have accomplished that, you shall achieve what you
most desire...you shall become a full fledged Dragonmaster...the stuff
of legends, m'boy!


"It" is pretty typical in the PS translation. Jessica uses it too, for instance.

But in one place, Laike uses the masculine when introducing Alex to Myght:

This is my friend, Alex. He's looking for the Black Dragon... And when
he finds him, he'll become the next Dragonmaster.
Sonic#

"Than seyde Merlion, "Whethir lyke ye bettir the swerde othir the scawberde?" "I lyke bettir the swerde," seyde Arthure. "Ye ar the more unwyse, for the scawberde ys worth ten of the swerde; for whyles ye have the scawberde uppon you, ye shall lose no blood, be ye never so sore wounded. Therefore kepe well the scawberde allweyes with you." --- Le Morte Darthur, Sir Thomas Malory

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