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NIS America Response to Fan Translation of Dangan Ronpa

NISA response to the fan translation of Dangan Ronpa by Houk. [nisamerica.com]

2013-07-09 12_29_38-NIS America Forums • View topic - Work with Project Zetsubou on Dangan Ronpa's E Houk: “I can’t really get into too much detail on the issue of fan translations and whatnot, but…

It’s not that we’re unaware of the fan translation, but as a general philosophy, we do all of our translation (and editing, and design, and production, and just about everything else) in house. We haven’t actually looked at their translation (specifically to avoid any potential ‘they ripped us off’ issues), but regardless of the quality we still have a certain approach to how we manage projects, and doing everything we can in-house is part of that. It’s how we’ve built our reputation among fans in the West and developers in Japan.

I can’t say we absolutely wouldn’t work with them, or other fan groups, moving forward, but right now it’s just not part of the process.

I don’t know any details about JAST USA, but to use them as an example, I’m guessing they have a very small staff and need to cut costs wherever possible, so in a situation like that it makes sense to work with fan translators. But for us, we have the staff and the experience to approach the project in a way that we feel works best for us.

We definitely respect all the work fan translators put into projects like this, helping more people experience the game and spread the word, and it isn’t a knock on them when we choose to do our own translation. It’s just how we operate as a company.

I’m sure a lot of people are enjoying/will enjoy the fan translation, and no matter how good ours is I’m sure people will still prefer theirs, but we’re still going to do everything in our power to do the game justice and hope people will support this awesome title.” [nisamerica.com]

I want to ask why they didn’t C&D (aka clear the competitors).

Update: Some tweets from Neonie:

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12 Comments

  • They seem to be cool with it, I like that. Its refreshing to see a company dealing with japanese games who doesn’t jump to legal issues compulsively.

  • That’s like saying: Fan Translations don’t affect our sales. That or they’re actually supportive of this practice, and are being really respectful to the fans’ efforts in translating the game before the news of it’s localization came up.

    Either way, I’ve always liked Nippon Ichi and I’ll support them by buying their releases the same way I’ve always done. They’re one of the few developers/publishers that seem to have their fans in mind when doing their stuff.

  • So is NIS actually sticking with the Dangan Ronpa name? Generally in marketing, if you can’t read or understand a title, it will suffer sales, yet everything they’ve pitched announcement-wise reflects no change in the label.

  • God damned arseholes !! How they even dare to act in a amiable, reasonable way !!!

    Now im going to buy the game no matter what !! Just wait and see !

  • It’s actually really nice to see such a sincere and well-reasoned response from a developer. I definitely prefer supporting companies that seem more human rather than the ones that seem to be motivated solely by profit.

  • I hope Danganronpa2 will be translated too.
    Either ways, it’s a good advertise for NIS, and people who’d like to play it on their Vita, especially the additional content, and support the franchise will buy it either ways.

  • Well, I believe this game translation would probably be good because it is not an eroge, therefore is not affected by censoring. That said, I already played Dangan Ronpa English so it really doesn’t affect me much. I see a major problem for this translation though because of the platform the game is using. PSP is not really popular anymore in the US due to the newer consoles that are coming out therefore localizing it is not really that good for sales or spreading the word. Those who like this type of game would already get the fan-translated version before the official even comes out.

  • A friend of mine who finished the Danganronpa fan patch said that the translation is good, but they didn’t localize much. So there are a few Japanese-based questions that would be hard to answer for non-Japanese players (silly questions like “What prefecture in Japan is famous for their gyoza”).

    I guess one edge that the NIS translation would have is that they’d change these to make it easier for an international release.

    Or not.

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