So, the Orb Bangle ...

For discussion of Lunar: Silver Star Harmony, the PSP remake of Lunar 1
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Alunissage
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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Alunissage » Sun Mar 21, 2010 8:00 am

Lunar3coming wrote:The same thing goes with "cyclops" over "monocrop" (what the heck is that???) and "evil cyclops" over "kyclops" (again, what the heck is that???).


...

I just TOLD you "what the heck was that." Can't you read?

アンモナー = [anmonaa] => Ammonia (WD), Nautilus (XS), Ammonite (Ubi)
モノクロプス = [monokuropusu] => Monocrop (WD), Cyclops (XS), Cyclops (Ubi)
キュクロプス = [kyukuropusu] => Kill Roller (WD), Evil Cyclops (XS), Kyklops (Ubi)

Also,
ザ・ディープ = [za deiipu] => The Deep (WD), Lurker (XS), The Deep (Ubi)

It's not exactly a mystery where "monocrop" and "kyclops" come from if you just look at the kana. 

You can't have it both ways. You can't insist that XSEED's job was superior specifically because it was more literal and simultaneously claim that they did a better job when they used their own much different names when WD's were direct renditions of the originals. You're free to decide that their version is better on other grounds, such as personal taste, but this particular one won't fly.

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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Lunar3coming » Sun Mar 21, 2010 8:27 am

Alunissage wrote:
Lunar3coming wrote:The same thing goes with "cyclops" over "monocrop" (what the heck is that???) and "evil cyclops" over "kyclops" (again, what the heck is that???).


...

I just TOLD you "what the heck was that." Can't you read?

アンモナー = [anmonaa] => Ammonia (WD), Nautilus (XS), Ammonite (Ubi)
モノクロプス = [monokuropusu] => Monocrop (WD), Cyclops (XS), Cyclops (Ubi)
キュクロプス = [kyukuropusu] => Kill Roller (WD), Evil Cyclops (XS), Kyklops (Ubi)

Also,
ザ・ディープ = [za deiipu] => The Deep (WD), Lurker (XS), The Deep (Ubi)

It's not exactly a mystery where "monocrop" and "kyclops" come from if you just look at the kana. 

You can't have it both ways. You can't insist that XSEED's job was superior specifically because it was more literal and simultaneously claim that they did a better job when they used their own much different names when WD's were direct renditions of the originals. You're free to decide that their version is better on other grounds, such as personal taste, but this particular one won't fly.


Of course, I can read. How about yourself? I was asking the question, "What are a "monocrop" and a "kyclops?" I was not asking where you got the names from because I already know since I've played the games myself. What I was trying to point out is that Xseed's names make more sense to the gamer. In fact, if I picked up a book and read the word "monocrop" I would be like, "What the hell is that supposed to mean?" Now just the opposite, if I picked up a book and read the word "cyclops" I would be like, "OK, that makes a lot of sense."

It's kind of like Luna's boat song. The WD version makes you feel like, "What does this have to do with the game?" And the Xseed version makes you feel like, "Oh, I see now what this whole scene is about." There is a HUGE difference between the two just like with the item names, enemy names, etc.

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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Alunissage » Sun Mar 21, 2010 9:03 am

That's a highly subjective response, though. There have been many, many gamers who thought that WD's version of the boat song made perfect sense and fit very well. The Korean PC release actually uses WD's versions of the two vocal songs rather than re-recording them or even using the Japanese songs.

Each version solved the problem of having two palette-swapped enemies a different way. GA/Kadokawa/etc made up a new but recognizable word (the intended meaning of "monoclops" is clear enough from context, using mono- to indicate the number of eyes, as that is the most conspicuous feature of those monsters) for the first monster and used the existing word for the second monster. WD threw out "cyclops" altogether (probably because they named another monster "mud cyclops") and used a close phonetic version of SSS's concocted new word for the first monster and something totally different for the second. Ubisoft used the already-existing word for the first monster and a phonetic rendering of the Japanese version of that existing word for the second. XSEED used the existing word for the first monster and added an adjective to it for the second monster. All of these solutions are acceptable, and which one is "best" is entirely subjective. If it had been me I probably would have called the first one Cyclops and the second Monoclops, starting with the familiar word and then using its made-up variation.

Again, no one is arguing that XSEED lacked for good people. The problem is that you're not just saying that you thought they did a better job -- an opinion to which you are certainly entitled, since it's highly subjective -- you're saying that WD ignored the Japanese text in favor of unrelated names, using examples that don't hold up. When your nonfactual arguments are rebutted you ignore that part of the discussion and latch onto something else while repeating your claim. This is intellectually dishonest. One wonders what your stake is here.

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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Lunar3coming » Sun Mar 21, 2010 10:37 am

Alunissage wrote:That's a highly subjective response, though. There have been many, many gamers who thought that WD's version of the boat song made perfect sense and fit very well. The Korean PC release actually uses WD's versions of the two vocal songs rather than re-recording them or even using the Japanese songs.

Each version solved the problem of having two palette-swapped enemies a different way. GA/Kadokawa/etc made up a new but recognizable word (the intended meaning of "monoclops" is clear enough from context, using mono- to indicate the number of eyes, as that is the most conspicuous feature of those monsters) for the first monster and used the existing word for the second monster. WD threw out "cyclops" altogether (probably because they named another monster "mud cyclops") and used a close phonetic version of SSS's concocted new word for the first monster and something totally different for the second. Ubisoft used the already-existing word for the first monster and a phonetic rendering of the Japanese version of that existing word for the second. XSEED used the existing word for the first monster and added an adjective to it for the second monster. All of these solutions are acceptable, and which one is "best" is entirely subjective. If it had been me I probably would have called the first one Cyclops and the second Monoclops, starting with the familiar word and then using its made-up variation.

Again, no one is arguing that XSEED lacked for good people. The problem is that you're not just saying that you thought they did a better job -- an opinion to which you are certainly entitled, since it's highly subjective -- you're saying that WD ignored the Japanese text in favor of unrelated names, using examples that don't hold up. When your nonfactual arguments are rebutted you ignore that part of the discussion and latch onto something else while repeating your claim. This is intellectually dishonest. One wonders what your stake is here.


One wonders what your stake is here.


This is my line here. What is your stake? Are you like married to Victor Ireland or something? It just seems like in every way you are against Xseed's work or something... WD isn't the only company who can put out a competent version of Lunar.

your nonfactual arguments


Once again here, how do you even know how all the names were derived? Unless you worked at WD or something, then most of your arguments about how the names came to be one way or another could be considered "nonfactual" as well. Think about it, how do you know how WD or Ubisoft named their stuff? I honestly don't know about Xseed but I like the fact that they restored the original names like the Ghoto Woods, Honmel Isle, etc.

Anyway, a few of us pointed out that we liked the way many of the items were renamed and such and a flame war ensued. The fact of the matter is, things just make more sense in the Xseed version. This is not an opinion, this is a fact. The item descriptions, item names, boat song, and many plot points in the game just make more sense altogether because they clarify a lot of the key points that were left out in the previous WD releases which favored the insertion of humor unrelated to the game. That aside, aren't we entitled to our own personal preferences? This is the US of A for heaven sakes.

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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby MaroonChan » Sun Mar 21, 2010 5:34 pm

Lunar3coming wrote:
One wonders what your stake is here.


This is my line here. What is your stake? Are you like married to Victor Ireland or something? It just seems like in every way you are against Xseed's work or something... WD isn't the only company who can put out a competent version of Lunar.

Well, I gotta be honest that's exacty how your coming off about WD.

I'll admit I liked some of the translations better, but its not like the translations WD did affected the plot really. So who cares? You really should show more respect to a company that probably introduced you to Lunar. Honestly I see no problem with WD's translation.


Anyway, a few of us pointed out that we liked the way many of the items were renamed and such and a flame war ensued. The fact of the matter is, things just make more sense in the Xseed version. This is not an opinion, this is a fact. The item descriptions, item names, boat song, and many plot points in the game just make more sense altogether because they clarify a lot of the key points that were left out in the previous WD releases which favored the insertion of humor unrelated to the game. That aside, aren't we entitled to our own personal preferences? This is the US of A for heaven sakes.

I'm sorry, but I'd still consider that an opinion. Your opinion. I know that some people preferred WD's version of the vocals. And as far as their humor. Dude, its a game! Its meant to be fun! They were doing that for comic relief. Would you rather it be serious ALL the time. I personally don't care for that (depending on the game or series). Besides, I enjoyed the humor in the convo's.

And you're entitled to your opinion, but you don't seem to accept that other people have opinions too. I may be guilty of this myself. *shrug* But okay you like XS's version better. Good for you. But that doesn't mean that WD's is automatically bad. And you shouldn't attack them or the people that prefer theirs.
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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Sonic# » Sun Mar 21, 2010 7:41 pm

lunar3coming wrote:The fact of the matter is, things just make more sense in the Xseed version. This is not an opinion, this is a fact.


As MaroonChan said, not a fact. They may make more sense to you. They may not to be. Because of the difference, it's an opinion.

I do not see how you can accuse Alunissage of being against XSeed's work. True, she is defending WD. But her stake in the argument is NOT to claim that one version is better than another. It is to point out that the claims you make to assert your point are subjective, impressionistic, and do not hold up under analysis.

Alunissage wrote:The perspective I wish Lunar3coming would get is that a name isn't automatically faithful to and respectful of the original if it comes from XSEED and wildly off the mark if it comes from WD.


The translation styles differ. One is not inherently superior to the other, and there are good subjective reasons to prefer all three, but no good objective reason to do so. To every translator's credit, there weren't many mistakes of clarity in any version, and there weren't many places at all where a translator gave a translation that could have no reasonable justification.

I've enjoyed every translation I've seen. I have to give props to XSeed for making a faithful translation, but that's not to imply that WD's is any less faithful.

---

Finally, I have a rather personal schtick with Lunar3coming's arguments, and I admit my bias beforehand - I don't think that "faithful" translation ought to be a desirable goal.[1] Intelligible, yes. Artful, yes. But I don't think it need reproduce the form or the exact meaning of the original in every spot. Every translation is a reinterpretation and an adaption. In addition to the similarities that must exist between a translation and its original, I look forward to seeing how the translators and editors emphasize different points and allow for the audience to see different possibilities in the story. But I don't care about literality. As Kizyr says in [url="http://www.lunar-net.com/sssc/sss_diff.php"]his J2E differences of SSSC[/url],

Kizyr wrote:Translation is an art, not a science, and so there are inevitably some changes in translated dialogue. Working Designs generally uses a two-step process, where the dialogue is first translated, and then interpreted to sound more natural in English.


Kizyr distinguishes between two steps: translation and interpretation. In these arguments, most of our issues are not really about translation (which is dubiously objective), but about interpretation (which is mostly subjective).

Because none of the translations suffers from a fault of "faithfulness," if that was important to you originally, all of the other judgments concerning quality fall back on interpretations that need have nothing to do with faithfulness to an original at all. I need not ever look at the Japanese to be able to judge these other qualities: is it culturally relevant? Do the names make sense to me? Am I moved when a particular plot point happens? Am I amused by the NPC dialogue? All of the criticisms of the WD translation I have seen harp on questions like these, with the issue of translation only being used as a proof of WD's inadequacy. For example, if people do not like the arbitrary and dated uses of humor, they dislike that first. I doubt that they start out particularly irked that the particular joke was not in the original, unless they know Japanese and feel that way about every translation. Translation becomes a talking point, attempting to lend authority to an argument about preference.

[1] I study a lot of premodern works where "translation" could be tight or loose depending on the author - faithfulness was not a concern. Psalm translations were a particular example, where an author like Mary Sidney (and her brother Philip) would actually write each psalm as a separate poetic form. The meanings of the psalms were basically translated, but in such a way that I cannot discount the considerable contributions that the differing poetic forms give to their beauty. Because we now think of the translator as inferior to the original author, my stance might be unthinkable for many of us, or interpreted as perversely preferring something derivative. All I mean to indicate, by this alternate bias, is that the faithfulness of translation has nothing to do with a translation's potential quality.
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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Silver Phoenix » Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:03 am

Another factor that comes into play here is XSEED purposely paying homage to WD's localization using certain character names and enemies. The problem is that while doing it for the fans it creates confusion when you find something that has changed, or is more true to the Japanese in translation. People are so used to things being called this, but it has been changed to that. The blended localization gets a little messy when you're trying to please the old with the new.

Everyone has valid points, but this shouldn't turn into a battle over who is the bigger fan or more knowledgeable. Trust me, I've fallen into this pit without realizing I was offending other people and that's not my style. Passion is great, and we Lunar fans can get heated rather quickly when trying to prove our point. The localization itself for SSH is fantastic, but again you can't please everyone and that's what XSEED was doing their best to achieve.

We have the game, it was respectfully translated, and we have new qualities of the game to create further discussion.

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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby Lunar3coming » Mon Mar 22, 2010 2:41 am

Sonic# wrote:
lunar3coming wrote:The fact of the matter is, things just make more sense in the Xseed version. This is not an opinion, this is a fact.


As MaroonChan said, not a fact. They may make more sense to you. They may not to be. Because of the difference, it's an opinion.

I do not see how you can accuse Alunissage of being against XSeed's work. True, she is defending WD. But her stake in the argument is NOT to claim that one version is better than another. It is to point out that the claims you make to assert your point are subjective, impressionistic, and do not hold up under analysis.

Alunissage wrote:The perspective I wish Lunar3coming would get is that a name isn't automatically faithful to and respectful of the original if it comes from XSEED and wildly off the mark if it comes from WD.


The translation styles differ. One is not inherently superior to the other, and there are good subjective reasons to prefer all three, but no good objective reason to do so. To every translator's credit, there weren't many mistakes of clarity in any version, and there weren't many places at all where a translator gave a translation that could have no reasonable justification.

I've enjoyed every translation I've seen. I have to give props to XSeed for making a faithful translation, but that's not to imply that WD's is any less faithful.

---

Finally, I have a rather personal schtick with Lunar3coming's arguments, and I admit my bias beforehand - I don't think that "faithful" translation ought to be a desirable goal.[1] Intelligible, yes. Artful, yes. But I don't think it need reproduce the form or the exact meaning of the original in every spot. Every translation is a reinterpretation and an adaption. In addition to the similarities that must exist between a translation and its original, I look forward to seeing how the translators and editors emphasize different points and allow for the audience to see different possibilities in the story. But I don't care about literality. As Kizyr says in [url="http://www.lunar-net.com/sssc/sss_diff.php"]his J2E differences of SSSC[/url],

Kizyr wrote:Translation is an art, not a science, and so there are inevitably some changes in translated dialogue. Working Designs generally uses a two-step process, where the dialogue is first translated, and then interpreted to sound more natural in English.


Kizyr distinguishes between two steps: translation and interpretation. In these arguments, most of our issues are not really about translation (which is dubiously objective), but about interpretation (which is mostly subjective).

Because none of the translations suffers from a fault of "faithfulness," if that was important to you originally, all of the other judgments concerning quality fall back on interpretations that need have nothing to do with faithfulness to an original at all. I need not ever look at the Japanese to be able to judge these other qualities: is it culturally relevant? Do the names make sense to me? Am I moved when a particular plot point happens? Am I amused by the NPC dialogue? All of the criticisms of the WD translation I have seen harp on questions like these, with the issue of translation only being used as a proof of WD's inadequacy. For example, if people do not like the arbitrary and dated uses of humor, they dislike that first. I doubt that they start out particularly irked that the particular joke was not in the original, unless they know Japanese and feel that way about every translation. Translation becomes a talking point, attempting to lend authority to an argument about preference.

[1] I study a lot of premodern works where "translation" could be tight or loose depending on the author - faithfulness was not a concern. Psalm translations were a particular example, where an author like Mary Sidney (and her brother Philip) would actually write each psalm as a separate poetic form. The meanings of the psalms were basically translated, but in such a way that I cannot discount the considerable contributions that the differing poetic forms give to their beauty. Because we now think of the translator as inferior to the original author, my stance might be unthinkable for many of us, or interpreted as perversely preferring something derivative. All I mean to indicate, by this alternate bias, is that the faithfulness of translation has nothing to do with a translation's potential quality.


Without starting a flame war, there were things in this new version that made more sense in fact. I have listed up a few things and if I have time to make a list I will because this is something which really stuck out in comparison to the WD version. I am saying this because I played through both the Xseed and WD versions recently and I think the last time many fans played through their WD version is about a decade ago so they are seeing things through the rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia and not looking directly at the differences.

1) According to Lunar's timeline, Meribia existed before Mel became the governor (since he plundered the town with his pirates) therefore he could NOT have "founded" the city like the WD version suggests. The Xseed version says "governs." THIS makes more sense and there is really no arguing that.

2) The whole part about Ghaleon taking Luna for his bride in the WD version made absolutely no sense because he was planning to dissolve her in the energy stream to free up her power so he could absorb it for himself to become a god. Since when was Ghaleon in need of a bride if the only way to get at Althena's power was to have her dead? You also notice that this same idea happened with the furnace in the 4 heroes story as well as the end with the energy stream. Their function was basically the same: free up the goddess' energy in so it can be absorbed by someone else to become a god. The WD version had no clarity in regards to this respect.

3) Also, there was much more clarity surrounding Ghaleon this time around. The fairies in the Grindery garden, Laike, Mia, Lemia, his diary, and other NPCs presented him in a way that made sense and showed how he transformed from a humble priest of Althena to one believing that there was no hope for a better world without a god to create order. The WD version did not show this depth to Ghaleon and portrayed him as the cliche "bad guy." In fact, the WD version added a bunch of stuff to try and cover up this fact.

I'm still not sure why so many fans think that the new version was mostly a cut and paste job either. From what I've compared between the two versions, these could hardly be called identical copies. It is true that several of the choice story and NPC lines of dialogue came directly from the WD version, but from what I can tell, the Xseed version has rewritten almost the entire main story and restored most of the important plot points. Although, like Silver Phoenix said, paying homage to Lunar fans by mixing two translations became a little messy and it may have been better if Xseed had completely retranslated the story from the ground up.

I know there's the argument that without WD, I would have probably never been introduced to Lunar and that is a valid point. It is true that I may or may not have come across the game later in life but I argue that without Lunar, WD would never have become as famous of a company as it did. Personally, I like the Japanese version better than any of the English versions because the story is the same in both the PSX and PSP versions with the exception of a few added scenes in the latter. But that said, if I had to choose one English version, I would choose Xseed's version because I feel that it is more respectful of the original writer's work. I say this because if I had spent years of my life writing a story and had some translator turn around and sh#& on my work by doing whatever they wanted with it to make a name for themselves, I'd be more than a little pissed off.

That's what WD did with a lot of Japanese game developers' titles and people in Japan just don't know about it...though Sony did and maybe that's why they were uncooperative with WD until they went out of business. Victor Ireland worked on a number of their games including the Arc the Lad series and Alundra and I know for a fact that WD was forced to go back and change a lot of things in their original translations because Sony wouldn't accept them as they were because of the perverted jokes. If that were my game getting treated like that, I'd sever my contract and make it public that I would not be working with that particular publisher because they couldn't respect the work I do.

Personally, I grew up buying almost every one of WD's releases but I have since then gone back and played the Japanese versions for most of them and there is an eye-opening difference for the most part. Personally, if WD was so interested in being humorous, why didn't they just make their own games to begin with? I am sure they could have come up with something far more whimsical than anything they ever translated.
Last edited by Lunar3coming on Mon Mar 22, 2010 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: So, the Orb Bangle ...

Postby MaroonChan » Mon Mar 22, 2010 4:33 am

I have to agree with Silver Phoenix and I suggest we stop arguing and just try to respect each others opinions about this.
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