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My Bloopers in Chrono Trigger (originally posted 2009-09-04 on FortuneCity)

I recently (relative to when this entry was originally written) revised my translation of Chrono Trigger yet again (update planned for some time on 05 September 2009), and found a number of foul-ups along the way. Rather than simply correct them and be done with it, I've put together a list of the more significant ones to analyze here for your viewing pleasure, or whatever.

To start with, there are the terminology changes noted in the news entry on the translation index. I've been severely overusing "bastard" for generic rude terms for people, so Frog's common やろう is now "lowlife" and Magus's きさま is now "vermin", both of which add some variety and feel more in-character. In contrast, the official translation, in keeping with Nintendo policy at the time, tones the language down to the point that lines meant to be very derogatory sometimes come out sounding almost polite (on the other hand, it also manages to make originally courteous lines sound brusque in some cases).

In place names, 海底神殿 is now the "Abyssal Temple" instead of the literally accurate but hopelessly bland "Ocean Floor Temple" (for reference, the official translation calls it the less accurate and less evocative "Ocean Palace").

Then there were a few places, not many but enough times to be disturbing, with things like this:

Lucca: Lucca: I wonder how he plans on fixing it?

Umm... yeah. I can only blame inadequate proofreading for that sort of thing.

Okay, now on to more substantial errors! In order of appearance since I'm too lazy to sort them any other way:

(JP): 少女「そんなー! か弱い女のコを
(old): Girl: No way! I thought you'd help
    out a frail little girl, please [heart]
(new): Girl: Oh, come on! Please, think of
    it as helping out a frail little girl [heart]
(NA): GIRL: Oh, come on! I don't know anyone
    around here! Please!

That one's a mixture of not reading carefully enough and confusing who's thinking what. The official translation avoids the issue entirely by taking liberties with the meaning, which is unfortunately typical of many translations of many things.

(JP): ハッ! カエルふぜいが……!
(old): Hah! Worthless frog...!
    You bastards make my blood boil!!
(new): Hah! Worthless frog...!
    I'll make a bloodbath of you all!
(NA): Stupid frog! It's time you
    jumped off this mortal coil!

Poor interpretation of 血祭り. As usual when violence is involved, the text is dumbed down in the official translation.

(JP): ルッカ「えーい、もうどうとでも
(old): Lucca: Eey, I'm even getting used to
    acting without thinking it over!
(new): Lucca: Oh forget it, we'll make
    it work somehow!
(NA): Lucca: This is completely irrational.

Broke up the text the wrong way. It's もう どうとでも, not もうどう とでも. もうどう is a term for acting blindly, but it has nothing to do with this line. Though neither does "This is completely irrational."

(JP): マール「気持ちは、うれしいんだけど
(old): Marle: I feel pleased, but now's not the time for that....
    We're looking a stone called Dreamstone.
(new): Marle: I appreciate the sentiment,
    but now's not the time for that....
    We're looking a stone called
(NA): Marle: Thank you but we can't.
    We're looking for a Dreamstone.

Misunderstood whose feelings these are, as well as making it sound awkward. 気持ちはうれしい means "I'm glad for your feelings", not "my feelings are glad." The official translation gets the basic idea, though she sounds overly blunt to my ears. Maybe it's the missing comma.

(JP): カエル「いっこくをあらそう!
(old): Frog: We're fighting over the whole country!
    Hurry, to where Magus is!
(new): Frog: We're in a race against time!
    Hurry, to where Magus is!
(NA): Frog: We must hurry to
    Magus's place!

いっこく as 一国 does mean the whole country, but I completely missed the idiom. 一刻を争う (literally "compete over moments") refers to a race against time. It's unclear to me whether the official translation got this one right or simply ignored the whole first sentence and paraphrased the second one.

(JP):    あなたの目に見えてる世界と
    いい? 宇宙は生命の数だけ存在するわ。
(old):    The world that you see with your eyes
    and the world that I see with my eyes
    may be completely different things.
    Listening? All that exists in the
    universe are the destinies of lives.
    Don't think that only what you can
    see and touch are reality.
(new):    The world that you see with your eyes
    and the world that I see with my eyes
    may be completely different things.
    Got it? There are as many universes as lives.
    Don't think that only what you can
    see and touch are reality.
(NA):    Am I a butterfly dreaming I'm a man...
    Or a bowling ball dreaming I'm a plate
    of sashimi?
    Never assume that what you see and
    feel is real!

I had been using a rare meaning of 数 to try forcing some sense out of that one line, instead of looking at だけ differently to get the correct meaning. だけ is usually translated as "only", but can be used like "as many as" or "as much as" in certain contexts, and this is one of them. I take some comfort from the fact that the official translation is almost completely made up, so apparently I'm not the only one who had trouble with it.

(JP): ロボ「あのエネルギー体に
(old): Robo: If that energy is introduced to a body,
    I fear it WILL BE disintegrated
    all the way to atoms!
(new): Robo: If swallowed into that body of
    energy, I fear we WILL BE disintegrated
    down to our very atoms!
(NA): Robo: If we're caught in that
    energy field, our molecular structure
    will be disrupted!

I think I misread エネルギー体に as エネルギーが体に, making "energy" the subject, rather than taking "energy body" as a single term. That threw off the meaning. The official translation beat me on this one.

(JP): ダルトン「お前らにも来てもらおう!
(old): Dalton: Let's have you come along too!
    Even though you've got a strange
    wisdom, you're in my way!!
(new): Dalton: Let's have you come along too!
    It would get in my way if you gave
    them any funny notions!!
(NA): DALTON: You'll have to come with me!
    You might start a rebellion or

Totally misinterpreted こいつらに変な知恵をつけられて. Somehow I got "you" out of こいつら (these guys), though at least 変な知恵 as "strange wisdom" makes sense. The official translation got the basic idea.

(JP): マール「あんたらのせいよ……!
(old): Marle: It's you guys' fault......!
    Give me back Cronooo!!
(new): Marle: It's you guys' fault...!
(NA): {Marle}: It's all your fault!...
    Give back {Crono}!!

Nothing major here, but it's amazing how much omitting "me" and making it all caps increases the impact. This line really deserves it, too. Marle is beyond furious.

(JP): ロボ「ダッカン成功デス!
(old): Robo: Dalton success!
(new): Robo: RECOVERY successful!
(NA): {Robo}: Success!

Okay, so this looks idiotic now (ダッカン = 奪還 = recovery, recapture), but I have a legitimate excuse. I had originally mistranscribed the text, so it actually did say ダロトン成功 = "Dalton success". Not that that really makes much sense, except maybe as a victory over Dalton gloat. Not to worry, though, since the official version isn't any better. Apparently, the translator couldn't figure out ダッカン or somehow thought it was unimportant to mention what was successful, and that isn't good either way.

(JP): 老人「おや、あんた、どっかで……
(old): Old Man: Oh, you, where have I......?
    So that's it......
    You've gotten imposing.
    Aged quite a bit, though.
(new): Old Man: Oh, you, where have I...?
    Ah, yes....
    You've really grown up.
    Gotten rather twisted, though.
(NA): OLD MAN: Hey, where have you been?
    So that's your story...
    And just LOOK at you now...
    You've become quite formidable!

It seems it mistakenly linked ヒネてはいる with ひねこびる (seem old) rather than the far more obvious ひねる (twist). On the other hand, the official translation misses the point almost entirely.

(JP): ロボ「ワタシの足をあげマス。
(old): Robo: I WILL give her MY legs.
    They ARE well-balanced ultra-miniaturized
    bipedal walking parts.
    If you just attach caterpillars or something to
(new): Robo: I WILL give her MY legs.
    They ARE well-balanced ultra-
    miniaturized bipedal walking parts.
    If you would just attach caterpillars
    or something to ME....
    PLEASE do not be depressed.
(NA): {Robo}: I'll give you my legs!
    They're lightweight and well
    You could mount some treads on me

Completely missed the last line... but so did the official translation.

(JP): ロボ「シ! 信じられマセン……!
(old): Robo: I! I canNOT believe it......!
    It HAS the genes of all living
    creatures since its birth on this planet!
(new): Robo: I! I can NOT believe it...!
    It HAS the genes of all life forms
    since life was born on this planet!
(NA): Robo: Amazing...
    It houses all the DNA of every
    creature that ever lived...!

Somehow confused "birth of life on this planet" with "birth/beginning of its life on this planet". Not too outlandish, but still wrong.

And on a related note, if you spot anything that's misspelled or has incorrect grammar, is poorly phrased, or doesn't seem to make sense, or if you have any suggestions of any sort on how to improve anything, feel free to e-mail me. I don't always reply right away, but I do always read everything unless my spam filter is being overly voracious, and I'll probably pick it up eventually even then.

Views: 707 | Added by: kWhazit | Tags: Revisions, translation | Rating: 0.0/0
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