Regarding the State of the Localization

So with all the recent talks of censorship in PSO2 and the forum being in a constant state of infighting with themselves, other issues have been overlooked... like the StarGem situation or Localization. About the only thing I agree with the majority is the issues regarding Star Gems but that's not what i'm here to talk about... this has been a long time coming but I never got around to detailing and I feel the damage has already been done but... here goes.

So we all remember this post yeah? https://forum.pso2.com/topic/5139/game-devs-should-fire-the-item-description-translator-for-scamming-and-cheating-for-their-paycheck?page=1

It's still a relevant thread mind you and its been a good place to document any of the translation errors and inconsistencies to hopefully get them sent over to the dev team. However some things never sat well with me, namely the title and such things like:

It can't get worse especially when translators scam and lie to the developers in translating game item descriptions and potential descriptions with partial effort of poor grammar, or just no effort at all.

but whoever is in charge of item translation in your development team - needs to GET FIRED. Right away.

I understand that given the situation and how things went... strong emotions and things like these are part of the norm when it comes to online game communities but nine times out of ten, especially with regards to this franchise, results in the wrong person ultimately being blamed... like the times Sega of America's staff took blame for things that were ultimately Sega of Japan's fault during the PSU days, or even how GMs get blamed for what is ultimately lack of communication on Sega of Japan's end or (to cut Sega some slack), Sega is blamed for Microsoft's incompetency with their storefront.

So, once again i'm going to try to sort things out as best as can be and try to make a bit clearer how things really go and I especially hope @LapisWave is reading this as well given how strongly they felt about the localization.

First off... lets look here: 949eb43d-2b12-43e9-8cdb-f1137ed1ef37-image.png

This is all the translators that have worked on the English version of Phantasy Star Online 2. Anyone who pays attention to other game's credits MIGHT pick up on some of these guys... these are not 'no name translator' who've worked on horrible translations... anyone willing to actually look up their portfolios will find nearly half of these translators have had prior experience with major titles.

Kris1.jpg Derek.jpg Stephen.jpg Deven.jpg DX.jpg

And oh look... we have a fan translator who's had experience with the Phantasy Star franchise hired to work on PSO2's localization: alt text

You can find her works here: http://www.sceneryrecalled.com/trans/trans.htm

So.... I guess the localization team are a bunch of incompetend translators who don't know what they are doing right? (Sarcasm)

Yeah no, if such were the case... why don't all these other things they've worked on suffer from the same issues that PSO2 does? I know at least one of these people have worked on Nier Automata (couldn't find their portfolio for the compilation above). Why would such professionals be making such mistakes like those seen in Phantasy Star Online 2? Thankfully I won't have to answer that... cause one of PSO2's localizers explained (in an out of context manner) OTHER reasons for why localizations can end up the way they do:

https://twitter.com/sjmtaelus/status/1294770964824170496?s=20 TranslationError.jpg

Cause its not like other companies and ESPECIALLY SEGA hasn't screwed over Western companies working on their titles in the past right? Lets put things into perspective...

  • PSO2 is a very big game. From what is known, Sega chose to have EVERYTHING localized from EPISODE 1 to EPISODE 6 and those who've looked at the game files show that even things that were never going to be released such as old events and some removed licensed content has ALL been localized. That's already one BIG workload.

  • We have no idea when localization even begun... for all we know, they could have not even begun localization until several months AFTER the E3 announcement back in 2019. Add to that the fact that the game needs to be dubbed which adds an extra amount of things to take into consideration (apparently from my understanding, PSO2's voice files need to be the same LENGTH as their Japanese counterpart).

  • Adding onto the first bullet point... but notice, most of the portfolios speak of PSO2 in the past tense OR don't list PSO2 as an ongoing job. Given that SEGA wanted everything to be localized from the getgo... this paints a unique picture. Any fixes from here on out does not involve the localization team anymore... its all in Sega of Japan's hands now.

  • Credit to whoever brought it up... but Localizers are paid per the amount of content that needs to be localized. So... if SEGA were to cut corners, they could pay for literally EVERYTHING ELSE and just tell the team to skip translating the flavour text.

So I hope the true culprit behind the state of the localization is clear.... if not here's a TLDR:

Localization team have worked on titles with high quality translations, Sega did not give them enough to work with to do their job properly

I kind of suspected something was happening behind the scenes preventing quality translations. I said this in a previous thread:

Yeah, the translations are pretty unacceptable for a professional product. It definitely felt like things were rushed. Like I understand that perhaps things were tricky due to the pandemic, but it eventually needs another pass.

Though I thought it was perhaps due to Covid and a hasty transition of working in an office to working at home that caused issues rather than Sega rushing the translation which seems to be the case here based on those tweets.

@Archetype-Luna said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

hasty transition of working in an office to working at home

That's not been an issue for months now. All non-essential businesses that can operate from home are running at full steam right now and animes are starting to come off hiatus (and Kamen Rider and Super Sentai only went a couple of weeks without new episodes) and localization really doesn't require as much work as starting from scratch. It's still a very involved job I'm sure though.

@Mattwo7 said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

@Archetype-Luna said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

hasty transition of working in an office to working at home

That's not been an issue for months now. All non-essential businesses that can operate from home are running at full steam right now and animes are starting to come off hiatus (and Kamen Rider and Super Sentai only went a couple of weeks without new episodes) and localization really doesn't require as much work as starting from scratch. It's still a very involved job I'm sure though.

From the looks of a lot of portfolios... it seems to me like the Localization Team that did the entire game aren't readily available to fix issues either; their job was done the moment the files were handed over to Sega. Given that Sega of Japan is the one managing things... we dunno who they get for the few fixes we've been seeing.

@Mattwo7 I always imagine the potential for more distractions when working from home such as kids. But yeah, this looks more like Sega forcing a rush job more than anything else.

@Leonkh99 said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

From the looks of a lot of portfolios... it seems to me like the Localization Team that did the entire game aren't readily available to fix issues either; their job was done the moment the files were handed over to Sega. Given that Sega of Japan is the one managing things... we dunno who they get for the few fixes we've been seeing.

I seem to recall one of them listing PSO2 as "ongoing".

@Archetype-Luna said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

I always imagine the potential for more distractions when working from home such as kids.

My mother didn't work from home and I constantly distracted her from her job regardless. I was a bit of a juvenile delinquent but sometimes it wasn't even my own fault, some of the schools and school districts hated me just because I had mental disorders. As someone who lived in Oxnard, the scene in the failed Battletoads cartoon pilot that introduces the main characters hit just a bit too close to home.

@Mattwo7 If you find it please do share, but I didn't see any who listed PSO2 as ongoing... maybe I missed one.

People also act like the game is unreadable and they're not fixing anything. A lot of the mistakes were fixed, so it's quite obvious they ARE still working on it.

Rushed? no! surely not! rushed.png

This didn't need a new thread.

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@Ephemiel said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

People also act like the game is unreadable and they're not fixing anything. A lot of the mistakes were fixed, so it's quite obvious they ARE still working on it.

People want to see a good quality of game and instead of flawed one. Thats why people report on the poor translation and localization so they can fix it.

If no one reports it and complains it, any companies or staffs will think they dont need to fix anything.

Because people rant, complain, and leave criticisms about the game, the developers take note and change things to make community stronger and make games better.

@Leonkh99 said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

So I hope the true culprit behind the state of the localization is clear.... if not here's a TLDR: Localization team have worked on titles with high quality translations, Sega did not give them enough to work with to do their job properly

Its not even giving job properly. It clearly shows none of these translators and SEGA communicated each other to stick withe same agenda and terms. Not to mention it clearly shows that some translators maybe skilled, but some of their texts are old TV Nihon quality subs using romanjis only instead of actual English official translations that they stayed with.

Which is why fan translations get praised in JP PSO2 because there isnt an error and the staffs stick with same term and leave it in agreement.

Also, I dont understand why you tagged me to try see if you want to convince me that it isn't their fault or something when it is also partially their fault for translating it in terms like Synchro as Shinkuro. It wasn't even an effort for quality translators as you claim it. But we can agree to disagree. You can defend them all you want. And I am glad the team is finally picking up and fixing some stuffs one by one, but it needs better work since we are catching up to all contents. Let's hope that they'll fix it once they get to Ep 6 at least.

@LapisWave said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

People want to see a good quality of game and instead of flawed one. Thats why people report on the poor translation and localization so they can fix it.

It's being fixed. Problem is people keep crying about it and still moan about the stuff that was fixed already.

@Ephemiel said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

@LapisWave said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

People want to see a good quality of game and instead of flawed one. Thats why people report on the poor translation and localization so they can fix it.

It's being fixed. Problem is people keep crying about it and still moan about the stuff that was fixed already.

I've definitely noticed some have been fixed as accordingly and I will definitely give kudos that they are on point and GM Deynger has been sending the complains as priority too.

People will cry on any games. Period. Even if some good quality mmorpgs, you will see something lacking and people cry about it. (I am looking at you, FF14 and Viera).

I will however say that besides the gray area on SGs and exclusive sale shops, I have no real complaints about other things too much. Rather, I share same view that people need to get over censorship and stop being upset about it because i personally feel that this decision wasn't made easily by sega themselves.

@GamerKillance said in Regarding the State of the Localization:

alt text

How TF is informing people of the real reason why the translation is bad beating a dead horse? You should really quit confusing intentions here.