The game was released with English, Japanese, Chinese and Traditional Chinese multi-language support and can be bought on Johren and Steam. The Steam version is shamefully censored and needs a patch, available through Johren. The game costs $24.99, reduced to $19.99 on release.
Seiran Island, a tropical eden where wanton sex acts are permitted according to local “pervert law.” But even here in paradise, there are those who would rather stay celibate.Johren’s Product Page
There’s the lesbian little sister who’d secretly bone her own brother…
The delinquent classmate everyone’s decided is a raging slut…
The tiny upperclassman so petite guys assume she’s off limits…
The timid wallflower girl with a hangup about showing off skin…
And me–a guy with a “huge” complex about his own little guy.
Yet united, we form the anti-copulation front No Love No Sex!
As its founder and head honcho, I, Junnosuke Tachibana,
won’t stop until we’ve crushed this crazy sex law once and for all!
I’ve even found a benefactor in this crusty old rich guy, name unknown…
He’s hooked us up with a secret base and a butt-ton of cash already.
In return, he wants us to find someone and “protect her at all costs.”
Apparently, she holds the key to our mission’s success…?
In which case, there’s only one thing to do: locate this mystery girl.
And all while keeping the SHO off our scent, too…
Oh, and our virginities intact.
Make no mistake! I’ll stop that perverted law in its tracks, just wait and see!
Nukitashi, originally known by its longer title, Nukige Mitai na Shima ni Sunderu Watashi wa Dou Surya Ii Desu ka?, is a long-form visual novel by Qruppo. It was released in August 2018 in Japan. Additionally, there is a direct sequel and another game in the same universe, called Hentai Prison. In October 2019 a bundle of Nukitashi 1 + 2 had launched in Japan.
Localization History: A Trial of Patience
While the localization story of Nukitashi is extremely long-winded, will try to retell the situation as much as it is known.
Sol Press was a now defunct Light Novel & Visual Novel publisher who rose to temporary fame due to their releases of popular titles such as Laplacian‘s Newton and the Apple Tree, Onii-Kiss: Onii-chan, Where is my Kiss? or Sakura Sakura.
Back in October 28th, 2018, they announced the localization of this game, during a panel at Kumoricon 2018. At that panel, they vouched for the game to release somewhere in Autumn 2019. This turned out to be an impossible proposition since it was a massive title, but the project still managed to progress smoothly into the Quality Control phase around 2019.
Due to many reasons beyond the scope of this article, Sol Press became tangled up in a messy situation full of money and tax issues, failed to pay their employees and faced general public scrutiny. Despite them still possessing the licenses of multiple acclaimed VN projects (not to mention all the light novel titles they began production on), outward communication became very silent.
The silence continued until October 31st, 2021. A thread by r/visualnovels’ head moderator made it public knowledge that the company Sol Press LLC. had been suspended by the Franchise Tax Board for failure to meet tax requirements. Ultimately, this meant being unable to function as a business. On top of that, the company’s owner, Michael Valdez (Xeviax), hasn’t publically appeared ever since. With nowhere to go, the Nukitashi localization was completely left hanging in the air for many years — fated to be doomed to eternal “in QC” status.
There were rumors that this project was handed over to other publishers — likely spurred on by the development that NekoNyan and JAST USA could somehow save Future Radio and the Artificial Pigeons, Irotoridori no Sekai as well as Laplacian’s World’s Horniest Housewife Rikky Horne. (Just shortly ago, Nekonyan could also rerelease Onii-Kiss again.)
On the 27th of April 2023, Nukitashi suddenly resurfaced when Shiravune announced that they would add it to their library. An even more surprising feat was getting it on Steam. It quickly became one of the most anticipated visual novel releases in a long time.
It quickly became known that Shiravune would not be doing much to the already finished project’s state, so the game was about to be released with Sol Press’ original production intact. And this is the state in which we can purchase the game today — one which invites controversy from people who heavily criticize localization best practices.
Obviously, engaging in these kinds of culture wars isn’t recommended. However, since they are so prevalent in the discourse about this game, it is only fair to at least mention some of the issues readers had with the localization.
It should be prefaced that the individuals making these threads criticizing the translation are not exactly acting in good faith. Please take these criticisms with a grain of salt, for anger clouds the mind.
The general talking points consist of the following conflicts. This list doesn’t cover everything:
- Immersion-breaking slang, references or jokes;
- Replacement of Japanese culture with Western/Anglocentric culture elements;
- Unfaithful distant or not literal translation;
- Characters cussing too much, making them feel out of character;
- Walking on eggshells to avoid cultural sensitivities;
- Players feeling like the localizers are taking potshots at them, and more…
What types of “issues” does this localization feature and why are people angry? Well, in order to understand that, we have to pick out some of the out-of-context screenshots (1, 2, 3, 4) being shared around, which depict the localization team bragging about their work.
Examples of this feature: boasting about putting unrelated jokes with political figures, institutions or events into the game at points where the limits of faithful Japanese translation are being tested. You can see the examples here:
The “Lolicon” argument
Another controversy stems from a really divisive topic that we don’t want to go into too much. It’s about the word “lolicon” being translated as ‘pedophile’, not regarding any potential nuance or sarcasm behind the instance due to personal biases. The translator, Ittaku, has indeed stated before that he’s grown averse to lolicon-media (1, 2). Arguing towards either side is, however, a quixotic battle, so our readers are encouraged to make up their own mind about the situation.
We’ve talked to Ittaku and according to his account it was not him who made all these heavy handed localizations and jokes, but instead the editor, Puffketeer, who was known for his heavy editing style on Chrono Clock previously. In fact, Puffketeer was one of the people who were ousted during the MangaGamer staff leaks and thus had their personal issues with people who dislike localization. The bitterness he may have developed, could have led to the inappropriate editing choices that were made in Nukitashi. The obvious potshots, slang terms of terminally online twitter users like “chud“, and an explicit reference to the Fragile Male Ego situation with A House in Fata Morgana could speak for this. Ittaku gave his own account on the Fuwanovel discord. You can read the conversation here.
Nazi Germany’s «SS»
Lastly, there is also a politically charged, historically relevant change that people heavily criticize. In Nukitashi, the chosen setting is an island that’s under the authoritative helm of a police state. The group in charge represent an obvious reference to the «SS» (Schutzstaffel) of Nazi Germany, and are aptly named after them.
To avoid all reference to such an infamous group, Shiravune decided to rename every mention (all 1250 of them) into the “FS” (Future SHO).
On a brighter side: Shiravune’s promotional efforts
For huge titles like Nukitashi, it is quite common for developers and publishers to try and create buzz. This is usually done by presenting screenshots of scenes early, letting the voice actors hype up their roles or introducing the cast, one by one. This promotional phase had all of them:
The pre-release phase consisted of these three categories of YouTube videos by both Shiravune and Qruppo, OP Movies and a Seiran Island Tourism Promotional Film.
PVs and Openings
Nukitashi is a project with a long history and there have been a lot of ups and downs during the localization period. Everyone has a right to decide whether the mentioned localization choices are enough to deter themselves from picking up the game. Translation accuracy is, and as much as that hurts, not a concern of the general audience. Just gaze at the high numbers of players at Nukitashi‘s release, although they’re mostly of Chinese origin though. The amount of Chinese reviews speaks volumes.
So after knowing all this, what are you waiting for? Utopia & Dystopia awaits you!