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Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass


Jack
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Does anyone agree with my impression that this game is Nintendo's next step in trying to transition some of the "casual" players they've hooked in to a more "meaty" & traditional game? If they can get they're head around the touch controls for Animal Crossing, well here's a deeper game with a similar control system...

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Does anyone agree with my impression that this game is Nintendo's next step in trying to transition some of the "casual" players they've hooked in to a more "meaty" & traditional game? If they can get they're head around the touch controls for Animal Crossing, well here's a deeper game with a similar control system...

Yep, I think you're right. When I tried the 'demo' of this that's what I thought. My girlfriend hardly touches games but she played quite a lot Animal Crossing DS but would only use the stylus.

Now of course us 'gamers' are quite used to the Zelda gameplay experience and kind of know what to expect. But someone new to it and with easier to use stylus control - they could really get excited about it. Back in the days of Zelda 3 Link to the past - I saw friends and relatives who once the Zelda gameplay got them by the scruff of the neck - absolutely fell in love with the game. I believe 'casual' gamers will lap up this game up.

As for the game itself. Even in my limited experience of it, it felt like the best Zelda game in over 10 years - that's right better than Ocarina.

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American release confirmed for 1 October today.

Import happy DS gamers - today is your lucky day. Nintendo of America have confirmed that The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass will be going Stateside on 1 October.

The game follows Link and Tetra, who on their sales discover a ghost ship. "Link falls into the ocean when Tetra gets into trouble, and wakes up alone on the shore of a mysterious island. Throughout the game, Link collects sand for his Phantom Hourglass, which allows him to explore deeper and deeper into a time-limited dungeon in his quest to find Tetra."

The game is controlled entirely through use of the stylus, and also comes with a Four Swords-lite Wi-Fi multiplayer option. It's a simple mode where "one player controls Link as he tries to gather as many Force Gems as possible, while the other manages the enemies who pursue Link." Gripping stuff.

If you just can't wait for the PAL release of the game - get importin'. It'll be perfectly compatible with your PAL DS, all dialogue will be in English, and it'll be about £2 cheaper. Two pounds! That's 200 penny sweets.

Sauce.

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It really doesn't. One guy fluent in both languages could do it in a week or less.

Yeah, you crossed out the most time consuming bit. Unless you think changing the language of a game requires no further testing. It'll just work, right? ;)

Anywya, I'm not trying to defend their desicion, it's blatantly a marketing thing :D Grrrr.

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Yeah, you crossed out the most time consuming bit. Unless you think changing the language of a game requires no further testing. It'll just work, right? :ph34r:

Anywya, I'm not trying to defend their desicion, it's blatantly a marketing thing :P Grrrr.

I crossed out the testing bit because I really have no clue about that sort of stuff. The point I was trying to make is that the translation in itself is no excuse for such a long delay, that's all.

As you say, it's blatantly a marketing thing.

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Actually translation into 6 or 8 different European languages does take a while.

Then fitting the Dutch translation into the text boxes take A FLIPPING AGE on top of that because you have to double each words letter count. And anti aliasing all of the umlauts and such. Takes aaaages.

All of which is no defense. It's a part of the localisation process and it shouldn't take a team three months to get it sorted. However it ain't a weeks job either.

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Actually translation into 6 or 8 different European languages does take a while.

Does it really matter if it's two or eight or even twenty different languages? Surely Nintendo can hire more than one translator and translate into all the different languages at the same time, instead of waiting for one translation to be finished before starting another?

Then fitting the Dutch translation into the text boxes take A FLIPPING AGE on top of that because you have to double each words letter count. And anti aliasing all of the umlauts and such. Takes aaaages.

All of which is no defense. It's a part of the localisation process and it shouldn't take a team three months to get it sorted. However it ain't a weeks job either.

If you want to make a lot of Dutch gamers very very very angry, the most effective way is translating a highly anticipated game into Dutch. Games are almost never translated into Dutch. And we hardly use any umlauts, are you comparing us to the Germans??

Anyway, I understand that there needs to be some testing, and Japanese text takes up less space that western text, etc, etc, but apart from all that, the translation in itself could easily be done in a week or less. By that I mean just taking the text and typing a decent and acceptable translation in a word document or something.

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Does it really matter if it's two or eight or even twenty different languages? Surely Nintendo can hire more than one translator and translate into all the different languages at the same time, instead of waiting for one translation to be finished before starting another?

If you want to make a lot of Dutch gamers very very very angry, the most effective way is translating a highly anticipated game into Dutch. Games are almost never translated into Dutch. And we hardly use any umlauts, are you comparing us to the Germans??

Anyway, I understand that there needs to be some testing, and Japanese text takes up less space that western text, etc, etc, but apart from all that, the translation in itself could easily be done in a week or less. By that I mean just taking the text and typing a decent and acceptable translation in a word document or something.

Yeah I'm not disagreeing with you, and no I wasn't saying the Dutch translation had the umlauts I was looking at all of the translations as a whole but should have made that more clear.

Anyhow, yes, for a company the size of NIntendo the process should be more streamlined and yes the amount of languages should be calculated into the issue as it goes but on the basis of how long we have to wait I assume that instead of putting a team on it for each language they may well just put one team on it able to work on the various langauges in one fell swoop?

But yeah, I'm not debating that it takes way too long and NOE isn't exactly going to win many plaudits for service all told. But the physical translation of the text isn't the issue by and large. The implimentation is the issue and that's what takes the time. Creating the new font pages (although this was a while ago I worked on such things and I seem to remember reading about more automated processes in the works), adding the translated text in, properly playtesting the text to make sure it's all in the correct place that's the sort of stuff that takes time. Not three months no, but not a couple of weeks either.

And yeah, I was vaguely aware that Dutch gamers prefer the english language - or at least that was the impression from the Dutch gamers I've ever spoken to, but unfortunatley that information didn't come in in time to get me off of localising the wretched front end I was stuck on for ages with a hell of a job resizing the fonts to fit.

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If you want to make a lot of Dutch gamers very very very angry, the most effective way is translating a highly anticipated game into Dutch. Games are almost never translated into Dutch.

More and more games are localised thankfully, as I'm making a living out of it.

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Nintendo of America still hasn't set a date for the US release of Phantom Hourglass, but it's reportedly shipping for the holiday season here - most likely by November. If you really, really can't wait for the next Zelda adventure you might wait for the European version, expected to ship in just a couple of months. It'll be in English and far easier to follow.

http://ds.ign.com/articles/800/800822p1.html

Wait a second: the European version will ship sooner than the US one? Just what did we do to earn that?

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I love the "it'll be in English" part. Not sure what they mean by "far easier to follow" though. Are they comparing it to the Japanese release?

Yes, compared to the Japanese version. I'll certainly find it easier to follow if it's in a language I understand.

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