Friday, May 11, 2012

King of Fighters R-2

A while ago I was playing the Neo Geo Pocket game KOF R-2 and I noticed that the translation was really awful. Although SNK isn't really famous for quality translations, this is up there with "all your base are belong to us".
Let's have a look.

The game has a "Making" mode which allows you to name a character and equip him/her with various skills.
It has seven stages, and a story of some kind.

Here's the script for the first stage after you've completed it once and play it again. ([name] stands for the name you give your character)
Rugal's fortress


[name], tired from many battle.
to gain new SKILLs and strength…
Goes back to the BLAK NOIA!

CLONE: "Intruder! Exterminate!"
[name]: "Ugh! Ooof! I can't die now!"

"Kunga lunga!"
"You're gonna rue seizing me!"
"You silly freak!"


"Feel my fists, you bad guy, you!"
"G, Gunga Lunga!"

Within BLAK NOIA! lies explosives.
[name] realizes they are for.
With a new SKILL, a new fight awaits.

Here's the original Japanese text with my translation:

ブラックノイアごう The Black Noia
ルガールしょゆうの せんかん Warship owned by Rugal

第1話 1st Episode
「せんにゅう!ブラックノイア」  "Infiltrate Black Noia!"

おのれの チカラぶそくをしった[name]。 [name] realizes his lack of strength.
テクをてにいれ、さらなるチカラを えるために、 In order to find TECHs and acquire more strength,
ふたたび ブラックノイアにせんにゅうする…。 he infiltrates the Black Noia once again...

クローン Clone
「シンニュウシャ、カクニン。マッサツスルッ!!」 "INTRUDER DETECTED! ELIMINATING!!"
「くっ、ここでしぬわくには いかない!」 "Ugh, I can't afford to die here!"

ユリ Yuri
「チェストォー!!」 "Chesutoo!!"
「よくも、あたしを こんなとこにとじこめて くれたッチねっ!」 "How dare you lock me up in a place like this!"
「この、バケモノっ!!」 "You... monster!!"


ユリ Yuri
「もはや、わるものには、てっけんせいさいしか ないとおもってたッチ」 "Bad guys deserve no less than to be punished by my fists"
「ンンンンンチェストォー!!」 "Nnnnn chesutoo!!"

ブラックノアごう ないぶは、きけんなばくやくでいっぱいだという。 The interior of the Black Noia was full of dangerous explosives.
[name]は、なんとなく そのいみが わかったきがした。 [name] felt that he understood what it meant.
ともかく、テクをあらたにてにいれ、つぎなる たたかいに むかう。 Anyway, he got a new TECH and headed for the next battle.
ちぇすと (chesuto) — An enthusiastic shout used when attacking an enemy, when a speech reaches its climax, etc. Etymology unknown.
By the way, if you know what "kunga lunga" means, let me know.

As you can see, it's pretty bad, partly due to the translator having to fit the translation into the little space available.

There are also outright errors, like the following (the name of a stage):
Giant Meteor — Trace from Space
What it's supposed to be:
こだいいせき — かつての ぶんめいのいさんが!?
Ancient ruins — The legacy of an old civilization!?
The translator has somehow misread いせき(遺跡 - ruins) as いんせき(隕石 - meteor) and consistently translates the word as "meteor" everywhere.

The game is pretty much a gold mine for translation criticism, but this will be all for now.
I leave you with this gem, which is Iori's win quote that he uses throughout the KOF series:
つきをみるたびおもいだせ (Remember me every time you see the moon)
In this game it turns into:
Remember me when I put you in orbit.

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