Significantly shorter than Episode 1, this episode looks at strange decisions made during English localization. Nitpicky? Yeah, probably. But these findings are, at the very least, perhaps a little bit intriguing.

  • I didn’t mind some of the changes when I played ff13. I liked the title music as well. I was even willing to endure the hallway. My breaking point was when Snow had to fight their version of a summon. I did exactly what they told me to do. I kept failing. I looked it up to see what did I do wrong. It told me I was doing the right thing. That is when I started to hate the game.

  • Because if Vanilla turned to crystal, she’d forever and always be known to the western audience as Vanilla Ice.

    • MarzGurl

      instantrimshot.com

  • karmakamikaze

    I can understand why they changed those class titles. Maybe this comes from my being a pen and paper RPG/MMORPG player, but they didn’t sound like classes, they sounded like archetypes, or roles. Sometimes that works, sometimes it feels weird. It depends on what you call them, I guess. Calling them classes, and using “role” names, doesn’t fit well with me.

    • MarzGurl

      I can see what you mean by that. Though, I haven’t gotten to this point yet in the reviews, but the massive changes just add to the confusion of all the Square Enix nouns that will get thrown around later on when I get to story. There’s just a lot of in-world terms that aren’t very well explained, and in personal opinion, the name changes just didn’t help. If these were the only creative words being thrown around the game, maybe I wouldn’t have even harped on it at all.

      • karmakamikaze

        Oh, yeah, I was defending class titles, and class titles alone. Coming up with various new names for things like “Attack and Defend” style? That doesn’t make as much sense to me. (Sorry, haven’t played the game, and forget the proper terms since watching the video earlier today, haha)

  • Honestly, I do kind of get some of these decisions (though from the examples here, I don’t really see the sci-fi naming outside the classes). Literal translations from japanese to english (and vice versa for that matter) often feel really awkward, and fail to convey the proper cultural context to fully understand the experience. Surprisingly, this also extends to ‘english used in japanese media’, due to its massive use having lead to its own status in culture. For westerners, americans in particular, there is no real example of a language that’s familiar enough to most people to serve a similar purpose. And for the countries that do have such a language, its usually english, which is pretty useless when you’re using the american version anyway.

    The class names are a good example of this. In japanese, they’re foreign words that roughly fit the desired meaning. However, to people who are familiar with english, their exact meaning is a bit off. Guardian or sentinel is a lot more likely to be used in english for their role rather than defender, but the former is pretty much unpronounceable to japanese audiences and the latter isn’t exactly a well-known word. Attacker in english references a guy who is attacking, rather than a person whose purpose it is to attack, but most names that carry that cultural context (like commando), are likely to be unknown to japanese audiences. A jammer is more likely to be thought of as a machine that jams in english, rather than the person who planted it.

    I can think of one good equivalent in english. In World of Warcraft, there was a brief phase with a type of guard called an aegis. The word aegis is from greek, originally referring to a mythical shield, later referring to something that protects people. So, at a glance, it fits. However, a closer glance at the greek word, it’s a word that’s unlikely to be used in conjunction with simple guards, as it refers to the protection granted by a powerful, knowledgeable and/or benevolent source.

    On the other hand, two of the translated class names do seem like mistaken cultural translations. The synergist and the ravager. With the former, I’m thinking of an office consultant that is constantly using hip new terminology without knowing the full meaning. With the latter, I’m thinking of a mindless, aggressive animal. I doubt that’s what they were going for. The original names probably wouldn’t fit either. A blaster is more often thought of as a sci-fi weapon, not someone who wields elemental magical powers. Spellblade would probably be a good equivalent, though it may have been too fantasy-like for the localisers. And an enhancer sounds more like someone who performs surgery to install improved body parts. Can’t think of a good equivalent though.