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It's kind of ironic to have "mutt" in your name when you identify with cats so much  the laziness, the aloof attitude, the smooth fur.. wait, shit. I'm not furry I swear.

So anyway I've been reading VNs since 2012 (disappointed the world didn't end tbh), and I've gotten through a fair amount of titles in my time. These days I tend to read a bit less, and most of what I finish is short, more experimental or indie stuff - sometimes in Japanese. The most recent thing I finished was Soundless, which I warmly recommend if you're into denpa titles.

I started learning Japanese through self-study; it took a while, and it's still going slowly, because, well, I'm really lazy. It helped that I was a NEET for around 4 years; these days I've re-joined the computing science undergraduate (bachelor's) program I dropped out of all those years ago and it's going... tolerably well, most of the time. I'm just happy uni is free here in Sweden, to be honest.

Given that I was planning to learn Japanese, and got much more aware of translation quality issues as time went on, there are some obvious gaps in my reading list, starting with MLA (these days it's more about the time investment with that one, though I can't remember if the uncensored version of Alternative is out yet). Anything by Ixrec not on my list (I'll re-read Rewrite one day ok) isn't there for that reason, among other things. I don't really apply the same standard to braindead moege like Ikikoi though because I'm probably not going to get through them in Japanese anyway.

When it comes to VN discussions sometimes I feel like I've seen it all, and I probably won't be super active. If nothing else, localization discussions focused on specific VNs interest me. For example, I think the execution of the localization strategy for DD in Chrono Clock was rather lacking, but in principle the approach chosen was actually good. As you can see I also value clarity and specificity when discussing things – some people seem unable to separate localization philosophy and localization execution from each other, and it frustrates me. This is not to say I'm fully clear at all times; we all fuck up sometimes.

Other than that... I like to think my tastes are wide-ranging because I can enjoy a lot of things, but what I always come back to are the darker, weirder titles, the titles oozing with mystery, the hard-hitting stories... I don't read fiction to relax, most of the time. The exception is probably yuri titles, which you can probably see since I rated Hanahira 9/10. I don't know what exactly it is about girls loving girls I enjoy so much, but I enjoy it very much indeed. That said I still find a balanced take like Kindred Spirits great, and twisted stories like スキトキメキトキス are enjoyable as well.

Hope to get along with y'all.

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8 minutes ago, Zakamutt said:

When it comes to VN discussions sometimes I feel like I've seen it all, and I probably won't be super active. If nothing else, localization discussions focused on specific VNs interest me. For example, I think the execution of the localization strategy for DD in Chrono Clock was rather lacking, but in principle the approach chosen was actually good. As you can see I also value clarity and specificity when discussing things – some people seem unable to separate localization philosophy and localization execution from each other, and it frustrates me. This is not to say I'm fully clear at all times; we all fuck up sometimes.

I see you have much experiences in discussion of VN, so I think this is a good reason for you to join in on the discussions that we would have here. I think it is very important that you share your knowledges and experience, especially with people like me who don't know so much. This way you can help people like me to understand better. In any case, I look forward to seeing you share your opinions.

On topic of honorifics, I agree. I don't think they have a place in English translations. I am a weeb too, of course, but it is English not Japanese. There is no place or purpose for them. It is too frustrating to see them in OELVNs. 

I look forward to getting along with you too! Nice to meet you. Do you prefer called Mutt? Or different name?

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23 minutes ago, MichaelBlueTheKing said:

Honorifics are not bad, tho 

Leaving honorifics in is a cop-out: it's saying that you, as a translator, are not good enough to judge when they are meaningful, when they can be dropped with little loss, and then they can be avoided by skillfully writing around their presence, perhaps with the help of an editor. Sometimes this is a fair assessment of yourself; most fan translators are pretty bad and arguably leaving the honorifics in will keep them from fucking anything up. VN companies tend to pay terribly little money to warrant people doing their best, and in a way I understand. But I want to fight for a higher bar when it comes to translation quality.

Part of the reason I'm against honorifics is that I genuinely wish for normies to get into visual novels, no matter how annoying they can be sometimes. At the moment a lot of VNs out there are calibrated to match Japanese otaku tastes, which don't really match mine all of the time. Even when they do, sometimes you really want variety. VNs have a lot of promise, and reaching a wider audience will help in increasing the breadth of content available in the medium.

14 minutes ago, Rednaz said:

I look forward to getting along with you too! Nice to meet you. Do you prefer called Mutt? Or different name?

I recommend using Zaka. I have been known to capriciously ignore messages addressed to other nicknames, though I admit to some fondness for "zakanyan". I am still not a furry.

Edited by Zakamutt
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9 minutes ago, Zakamutt said:

I recommend using Zaka. I have been known to capriciously ignore messages addressed to other nicknames, though I admit to some fondness for "zakanyan". I am still not a furry.

Zakanyan sounds very cute, and I think this fit very well with the name of forum / NekoNyanSoft. Glad to have you here, ZakaNyan ~~

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41 minutes ago, Zakamutt said:

Leaving honorifics in is a cop-out: it's saying that you, as a translator, are not good enough to judge when they are meaningful, when they can be dropped with little loss, and then they can be avoided by skillfully writing around their presence, perhaps with the help of an editor. Sometimes this is a fair assessment of yourself; most fan translators are pretty bad and arguably leaving the honorifics in will keep them from fucking anything up. VN companies tend to pay terribly little money to warrant people doing their best, and in a way I understand. But I want to fight for a higher bar when it comes to translation quality.

I believe in preserving the inherent value of honorifics. They effectively and easily show how the characters relate to each other and are easy to pick up on, even for new readers. Trying to avoid them by finding consistent English equivalents is unnecessary. On a related note, Japanese naming conventions should also be preserved.

 

Also, welcome to the forum, Zakawan:D

Edited by Tsukishiro
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10 minutes ago, Tsukishiro said:

I believe in preserving the inherent value of honorifics. They effectively and easily show how the characters relate to each other and are easy to pick up on, even for new readers. Trying to avoid them by finding consistent English equivalents is unnecessary.

I respect your opinion, but, I am a new reader of visual novel genre and I think easily showing relations and being easy to pick up on isn't always a good thing. I think showing how characters relate to each other and such being shown in conversation and exposition is much better than just using honorifics or Japanese term. 

Of course, you may be right. I'm not very good at English so maybe I am not best qualified to talk about this.

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3 minutes ago, Zakamutt said:

Part of the reason I'm against honorifics is that I genuinely wish for normies to get into visual novels, no matter how annoying they can be sometimes.

That's the main reason I don't dislike honorifics at all: I hate normies. 
While I understand that getting more normies into Visual Novels will help us getting more valuable localizations, at the same time I'm sure normies will never approach Visual Novels 'cause they are "too long". Personal experience. 
Because, honestly, even short VNs are long to read. You need something more than a simple "Try it! It's good!" to pick up a title that will take so many hours. You need passion. 
And normies are normies for a reason. That "passion" about anime/mangos/novels doesn't exist for them. 
They watch anime because it's something they can do while eating pop-corns. They read manga because that's something they can do on the train while going to university (or on the bus while going to school). And I've never seen one of my normie friends picking up a title by themselves. They follow suggestions or the most popular title. 
But everytime I tried to suggest VNs to a normie friend, always the same answer: "Too long. I have a life."  
And it's not even a language barrier (I'm Italian, we probably have a total of 2 VNs in Italian, one of them being DDLC and it hurts me if I think about it). They just don't care. It's too long, they won't read it. 

And btw, my "Honorifics are not bad" was not referred to the localizations. I just saw the tag and got insta-triggered because I love honorifics and the meanings behind each one of them. 
If we are talking about honorifics in english, tho, I don't see them as a barrier that prevents people from reading VNs. That would probably be a pathetic excuse. If you really like something, you find a way to enjoy it. And normies are just too lazy to enjoy such pieces of art (while I'm too lazy to start learning Japanese). That's THEIR problem, not mine xD 
Normies didn't help manga become popular in my country. They were already popular to begin with. 
Normies didn't help anime become popular in my country. Anime in Italy are still treated like shit to the point animation films are broadcasted for a very limited period of time (usually 2 days if we are lucky) and in a very limited number of Cinemas. 
Light Novels? The only 3 Light Novels we have here are SAO, Danmachi and Re Zero, but even those sell so low they never get a reprint after half a year. 

Sorry for the wall of text. This was me saying normies should get exterminated! :D  
 

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1 minute ago, MichaelBlueTheKing said:

That's the main reason I don't dislike honorifics at all: I hate normies. 
While I understand that getting more normies into Visual Novels will help us getting more valuable localizations, at the same time I'm sure normies will never approach Visual Novels 'cause they are "too long". Personal experience. 
Because, honestly, even short VNs are long to read. You need something more than a simple "Try it! It's good!" to pick up a title that will take so many hours. You need passion. 
And normies are normies for a reason. That "passion" about anime/mangos/novels doesn't exist for them. 
They watch anime because it's something they can do while eating pop-corns. They read manga because that's something they can do on the train while going to university (or on the bus while going to school). And I've never seen one of my normie friends picking up a title by themselves. They follow suggestions or the most popular title. 
But everytime I tried to suggest VNs to a normie friend, always the same answer: "Too long. I have a life."  
And it's not even a language barrier (I'm Italian, we probably have a total of 2 VNs in Italian, one of them being DDLC and it hurts me if I think about it). They just don't care. It's too long, they won't read it. 

And btw, my "Honorifics are not bad" was not referred to the localizations. I just saw the tag and got insta-triggered because I love honorifics and the meanings behind each one of them. 
If we are talking about honorifics in english, tho, I don't see them as a barrier that prevents people from reading VNs. That would probably be a pathetic excuse. If you really like something, you find a way to enjoy it. And normies are just too lazy to enjoy such pieces of art (while I'm too lazy to start learning Japanese). That's THEIR problem, not mine xD 
Normies didn't help manga become popular in my country. They were already popular to begin with. 
Normies didn't help anime become popular in my country. Anime in Italy are still treated like shit to the point animation films are broadcasted for a very limited period of time (usually 2 days if we are lucky) and in a very limited number of Cinemas. 
Light Novels? The only 3 Light Novels we have here are SAO, Danmachi and Re Zero, but even those sell so low they never get a reprint after half a year. 

Sorry for the wall of text. This was me saying normies should get exterminated! :D  
 

I like your attitude towards normies, but translations are supposed to inherently appeal to another language. Including honorifics may please hardcore weebs, but it's essentially half-assing your translation work. Same with using words like senpai, kouhai, onee-sama, etc. You're not actually translating everything properly just to make weebs feel good because they know certain Japanese words. Translation inherently is supposed to change shit like that to fit to a new language that doesn't adopt the concepts the original language has.

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1 minute ago, Virgin Smasher said:

I like your attitude towards normies, but translations are supposed to inherently appeal to another language. Including honorifics may please hardcore weebs, but it's essentially half-assing your translation work. Same with using words like senpai, kouhai, onee-sama, etc. You're not actually translating everything properly just to make weebs feel good because they know certain Japanese words. Translation inherently is supposed to change shit like that to fit to a new language that doesn't adopt the concepts the original language has.

I perfectly understand, don't worry. I've done almost a year of fansubbing and I've come to understand the difference between translation and language adaptation. 
Personally, I don't care that much about reading -chan or -kun in an english localization. I can't even remember if the last VN I read was with or without honorifics. 
We have the voice acting, anyway. If we need to do some "weebing", we can just hit that repeat button any number of times (like I did when I was reading MuvLuv, everytime Chizuru would say something). 
But if you are going to remove honorifics, at least do a perfect job. If you are going to remove honorifics and translate badly, next time just leave the honorifics where they are. It's better.
(I'm the type of person who easily ignores typos and many other things as long as I understand what I'm reading, so I'm certainly the last person alive who can judge the quality of a translation, btw. And while doing that, I hated when my translations were bad. I fought to achieve perfection. And then I stopped. I'm a lazy person, translating is too much for me xD)
I was just saying honorifics are not what prevent normies from reading VNs. The main problem is their brain. They don't have one. 
 

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18 minutes ago, Virgin Smasher said:

I like your attitude towards normies

Reading this is already enough for my mind. 
I'm basically alone in this country. The only weebs I know live too many kms away from me. 

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21 hours ago, Zakamutt said:

't know what exactly it is about girls loving girls I enjoy so much, but I enjoy it very much indeed. 

I assume it's not a VN, CBA to check as on mobile, but you would love Candy Boy! 

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RE: Honorifics, I'm reminded of Princess Evangile where everyone makes a big deal out of Masaya, the protagonist, not adhering to the conventions of the setting. The students of the all-girls' school he transfers into have a thing about addressing their underclassmen with no honorifics, but Masaya being an outsider is accustomed to the standard convention of affixing -chan to the end of their names and occasionally gets ragged on about it from the traditionalist faction of the school against gender integration.

I'd love to kill honorifics in English translation, but there's some nuance lost in doing so and sometimes it's an inherently important part of the dialogue that I don't think they're reasonably removed. As in the example given, there's no way to drop the honorifics without entirely rewriting some conversations because the conversations are literally about the nonstandard use of honorifics. At that point, I think it's entirely reasonable to argue that dropping honorifics isn't true to the original work anymore however well-intentioned or even well done it is, it's just good fanfiction at that point. That said, I think keeping or dropping honorifics should be done on a case-by-case basis and I don't think honorifics are a terribly complicated cultural difference for the newbie to experience and learn about, where they are kept.

Now, if you're actually writing an original English story, sticking honorifics in your dialogue and adhering to other "weeb culture" tropes for the sake of pandering to the type of people who gets their panties wadded up over that stuff is kinda dumb if you ask me, but that's a different matter from translating/localizing an existing Japanese product. Maybe if your setting is in Japan and you're trying to be culturally accurate... but then I'd chastize you as a creator for being that unoriginal. 9_9 Names should always be firstname.lastname in English, there's no sort of conversational meaning potentially lost in reversing it from the lastname.firstname Japanese convention.

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