Tag Archives: thoughts

The End of Smash DLC

Ryu, Roy and Lucas have finally joined the battle! Many fans were surprised to see all three characters released at the same time. Everyone immediately became excited with the idea that DLC will continue to be pumped out for “Smash for 3DS/Wii U” until Sakurai’s arms really do fall off. Today, I’m here to crush those dreams, and offer a much more realistic view of Smash DLC. I’m so sorry.

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One Button (Sakurai Famitsu Column)

桜井政博ゲームについて思うこと
Original Publish Date: May 2nd, 2003. Volume 3.

Comment from PushDustIn: If you enjoy these translations, please support Sakurai by buying his book. Out of respect, the original Japanese will not be posted. However, if you would like to check my translation you may request it by e-mailing me, or by messaging me on Twitter. Stay tune and subscribe!

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Sakurai Answers 100 Questions from Fans

Hi everyone, Sutamen here with a translated Q&A session translated from 桜井正博ゲームについて思うことDX, released July 30th 2008. In this article, Sakurai answers fans’ questions about games, his personal preferences, and life in general. Read on to discover his game-making motto, how much sleep he gets, and what he would name his cat!

Thanks to PushDustIn for translation help and for bringing me onboard with this project.

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Game Store Staff: Masahiro Sakurai

Game Store Staff: Masahiro Sakurai

桜井政博ゲームについて思うこと
Famitsu: January 30th, 2004 . February 6th, 2004. Volumes 39/ 40.

Comment from PushDustIn: If you enjoy these translations, please support Sakurai by buying his book. Out of respect, the original Japanese will not be posted. However, if you would like to check my translation you may request it by e-mailing me, or by messaging me on Twitter. Please note, that this article takes place between the time that Sakurai had decided to quit Hal, and way before he started working on Brawl. I decided to translate this article as I believe it gives valuable insight into Sakurai’s working approach, and is an interesting story that is completely unknown. “One Button Concept received the most amount of votes, so I will be translating that article next. sutamen is working on additional Famitsu articles, so we will have more in the near future. Stay tune and subscribe!

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Perception of Smash DLC in Japan:

I held a Smash Poll before the DLC was announced. Check out the results here. Also, follow me on Twitter for more updates.

NOTE: CHECK THE DATE OF THIS POST. IT’S FROM FEBRUARY. IT DOES NOT REFLECT THE CURRENT SITUATION.

After the Rayman Leak, some users on Smashboards asked me to look into the general attitude of Smash DLC in Japan, and what characters are being requested. After looking into it for the last couple of days, I’d like to share the results. I was quite surprised on how similar opinions were, with some minor differences.

The latest fake Rayman leak is still seeing highly popular new  user created content on English Miiverse, while the Japanese community has mostly ignored it, and instead has kept posting about Valentine’s Day. It makes sense as the leak largely impacted the Western community. Also, as I showed in my previous post, some Japanese gamers were a little confused on who Rayman was. I further prove this, as Rayman has not been requested by many Japanese gamers.

In order to gather the character data, I looked on a wide variety of websites and manually counted references to characters. It’s not totally inclusive; as I’m sure I missed a lot of opinions. I collected over 430 “votes”, and 131 unique characters. In instances where the comment stated that they wanted a group of characters back (such as all the cut veterans), I added +1 to every character that it applied to. Please note, that I looked for posts/ sites/ tweets that were posted before the Rayman “leak”. I didn’t count any references to Mewtwo.

The Data:


(An earlier version of this post had an incorrect overall graph)

Here’s the ranking (Note, there are a lot of “ties”). Characters grouped with the same color have the same number of “votes”.

リュカ Lucas
ウルフ Wolf
スネーク Snake
アイスクライマー Ice Climber
ロイ Roy
ピチュー Pichu
キングクルール King K. Rool
クリスタル Krystal
リドリーRidley
ディクシー Dixie
ペーパーマリオ Paper Mario
カスタムロボ Custom Robo
デイジー姫 Daisy
ワドルディ Waddle Dee
ロビン Isaac
ゴエモン Goemon
天国 R. Heaven
ジバニャン Jibanyan
ジーノ Geno
いか娘 Inkling
アルル・ナジャ Arle Nadja
ロクマンゼロ Megaman Zero
リュウ Ryu
ボンバーマン Bomberman
フシギソウ Ivysaur
ゼニガメ Squirtle
クロノア Klonoa
クラッシュ・バンディクー Crash Bandicoot
キノピオ Toad
ワルキューレ Valkyrie
レオン Leon
ブラックシャドー Black Shadow
ビューティフルジョーViewtiful Joe
バンジョー&カズーイ Banjo and Kazooie
テイルズ Tales Character
ちびロボ Chibi Robo
ゾロアーク Zoroark
スカポン Sukapon
ジュカイン Sceptile
アシュリー Ashley
ワルイージ Waluigi
レイマン Rayman
ミカヤ Mikaya (FE)
マロ Maro (Super Mario RPG)
マグナ Magmun (Kid Icarus)
ベヨネッタ (Bayonetta)
ヒルダ姫 Princess Zelda
シャドウ・ザ・ヘッジホッグ Shadow the Hedgehog
ザンギエフ Zangief (Street Fighter)
サーリャ Tharja(FE)
キャサリン Birdo
カメックス Blastoise
エンデ Pandora’s Tower character
ウェアホッグ Werehog (Sonic)
アイアイ AiAi (Super Monkey Ball)
鷹丸 Takamaru
シレン Shiren

Veterans:

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Japan loves their cut veterans. The clear majority of requests are for cut veterans. The top six are all veterans.
Here’s a graph that shows veteran support when compared to each other.

The most requested veteran is Lucas. Some users worried about the lack of an official localization for Mother 3, as it could hurt his chances for being marketable. However, the majority of users were pretty positive about his chances and quite “feverish”.

In second place is Wolf. Like Lucas he is a fan favorite. Some users have cited the upcoming Star Fox Wii U game as improving his chances. ChronoBound, who worked on the original, “Most Wanted Characters in Japan” post has stated that Wolf was highly requested pre-Brawl in Japan.

Snake landed in third place. Some worried about the lack of Konami support as hurting his chances with coming back. However, his unique moveset is missed. One poster suggested a soldier from Advance Wars taking on Snake‘s moveset.

Ice Climber(s) lands in fourth place.  Ice Climbers were cut due to issues with the 3DS hardware. Some posters suggested that they should only come back for the Wii U version (the DLC roster doesn’t have to be the same), while others have suggested that Nana and Popo should be costumes of each other, and the pair gimmick should be scrapped. I believe if it wasn’t for the 3DS hardware limitations, they would have a serious shot at being #1.

Roy is in fifth place. Since I focused my information collecting on post-release results, I believe Lucina might have damaged his standings a bit. Some posters joked that “Roy” was already in the game. (Get it!?)

Ivysaur and Squirtle were shown less love than the other cut veterans, even Pichu. Anytime the former were mentioned, they were mentioned in together. Some posters mentioned that since the Pokemon Trainer wasn’t going to come back, Ivysaur and Squirtle had a low chance of returning.  A lot of posters claim, ‘nostalgia’ for Pichu. I think Dr. Mario’s return to Smash 4 has helped Pichu‘s popularity in addition to his “cuteness”.  In the same vein, Young Link did not make it in the top percent at all. Other suggestions of Link were Midna + Wolf Link and Link who uses Masks.

“A/B Ranked” Newcomers:


King K. Rool
had the most outcry. I saw some discussion on whether or not Nintendo actually had control over the King’s copyright (they do).  A lot of posters noted that the Super Nintendo/ Famicon versions of Donkey Kong are high sellers, and that he has popularity abroad. Also, the Kremlins appearing in Smash Run has helped. King K. Rool has had steady popularity in Japan, and has been requested for awhile.

Paper Mario and Custom Robo have pretty sizable support. I think the Paper Mario stage in the 3DS helped bring support for Paper Mario. There seems to be a lot of debate about the potential Custom Robot inclusion as the series isn’t popular outside of Japan and hasn’t had a new game for a couple of years.

Krystal has some support, and is ranked higher on the mention list…but honestly I don’t really see it as “feverish” as the other characters. Usually she just pops up in a list with no justification.

Ridley also had some support. However, after he was revealed to be a boss character in the Wii U version, his support dropped.

Daisy has quite a bite of “feverish” support. Saw some posts of people being disappointed that Rosalina made it into Smash before Daisy.

Waddle Dee has about the same level of support as Daisy and Goemon, but some posters felt that the Kirby representation was okay as it is.

Goemon – Some posters feel that Goemon represents Konami better than Snake. However, the clear majority of posters still want Snake back. Goemon‘s lack of popularity abroad also hurts his chances.

“C/D Ranked” Newcomers:

These newcomers were mentioned, but didn’t really have “strong” support. However, the frequency of their mentions were noteworthy higher than other characters.

A Rhythm Heaven character was requested from time to time. The Gematsu Leak was translated into Japanese, but I don’t think it spread as much as it did in the West.

Geno is still getting requests. Maro was also requested. But not as much. His lack of new game hurts his chances, but fans still remember Geno.

The Inkling from Splatoon has seen some recent popularity. I think after the game is released, we will see more Japanese fans wanting her as a lot of people in Japan think she is cute.

Arle Nadja from Puyo Puyo was somewhat requested. One of the posts that mentioned her, admitted that her chances were low because of low worldwide recognition.

Ryu from Street Fighter was also requested.

Bomberman was requested.

Klonoa has his fans. Like Crystal, he was mainly just mentioned.

Surprisingly Crash Bandicoot got some mentions. Personally, I think of Crash Bandicoot as a PlayStation character, but some users really enjoyed the games.  Some arguments erupted over him fitting into Smash or not.

Toad has also got his fair share of mentions. Some of mentioned Captain Toad, but I haven’t really seen an increase in a call since Captain Toad was released.

Closing Thoughts:

Not much has changed since ChronoBound’s observations. The inclusion of some characters, like Shulk was widely celebrated, while Japanese gamers seem hurt that characters were again axed. With the inclusion of Chrom as Robin’s Final Smash, his popularity decreased a little bit. I saw some requests for Zoroark, but i think the return of Mewtwo satisfied fan’s desires for a DLC Pokemon representative.  Roy still has feverish support, but I think Lucina‘s inclusion killed some of the hype.

Let me know in the comments below if you guys have any additional questions, or if you would like me to investigate a particular character. If I get a lot of requests, I will write a follow up post.

I held a Smash Poll before the DLC was announced. Check out the results here. Also, follow me on Twitter for more updates.

Bento vs. Lunch Box

Translation, just like writing, is an art. There are multiple requirements in order to become a good translator.

 or 

The most obvious one is that the translator needs to utilize and comprehend advance grammar structures and vocabulary in both languages. Without this, the translator cannot be prepared for complex situations that may arise.

The second requirement is that the good translator needs to understand the inferred meaning. That is, understand what is really being said. In Japanese, there are a ton of inferred meanings. One example of a word potentially being lost in translation is “difficult”, or 難しい. While the literal meaning of 難しい is difficult, when used to discuss a situation it usually means, “this is nearly impossible to work out”. Without the cultural context, these kinds of translations are indeed 難しい. In addition, body language is also different cross-culturally. This is why machine translation will take many years to fully replace human translation.

The last major requirement is to understand the audience. With the second requirement, it is necessary to understand the speaker. In this requirement, it is necessary to understand the listener. Essentially, should the translator localize the text? There is a lot of debate about this in the translation world. Some people believe that the text should be kept as literal as possible (Bento). While other people believe the text should be translated so it could be understood by the audience (lunch box).

Personally, I believe that in most cases it is more desirable to translate closer to the lunch box side. In the case of translating something for a niche audience though, the bento approach would be preferable. However, in cases of translation for general consumption, the bento approach has the potential to alienate audiences. The main downfall of the lunch box approach, is that the translation will not hold up to it’s original meaning (Insert a Lost in Translation reference here). After all, bentos and lunch boxes are extremely different. Despite this, the translator is still opening doors to the audience. For audiences who would like to understand the original meaning with all of it’s connotations, it is up to them to investigate further.

Part of my goal with this blog is to investigate the changes that occur during localization, and improve my own skill as a translator. I would greatly appreciate feedback, opinions and suggestions at any time.