@dark1x For sure. I'm not trying to dismiss that there were genuine struggles or misfires made by Japanese publishers during that era, too. I think some of these things were compounded by slowness on western tool makers to localize their products, but that's another topic for another day
@dark1x And I do see a slow sea change happening within my own sphere of influence as well. That I can even talk about the games that I do and not immediately get laughed out of the room is real progress in western discourse that I'm grateful for and I don't want to overlook it.
@dark1x For me, it just feels like, there are some conversations among Japanese games that have been going on for a very long time and I think people sometimes mistake that reduced accessibility or insight into it as a given game lacking intention as a work.
@dark1x I said this elsewhere, but sometimes as an editor I'm on projects and there are times when they're dealing in subgenres the other translators aren't savvy about and had I not been there to tweak things, the final game would've suffered. That responsibility is on my mind a lot.
@dark1x But you are absolutely right that dismissiveness is hardly exclusive to Japanese games. I focus on them because that's my area of expertise, but lord knows, you see much of the same language used to dismiss stuff from Eastern Europe and other markets. It's a broader struggle.

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More from @iiotenki

24 Apr
I debated whether to weigh in on it because my feelings on the matter are complex, but it's bugging me, so what the hell. There's been a lot of chatter about how Nier Replicant's reception is indicative we're fully past the, let's say, Phil Fish phase of Japanese games criticism.
Trust me, as a localizer, I get where that excitement comes from. It's the rare instance of a game widely misunderstood in its time not only getting a second chance to make a case for itself, but to do so in an environment where its director has since gained much acclaim.
More people "get" the original Nier now and that's great. It has a lot of important things to say about games, their stories, and how they're told. But I think it's premature to say it suggests foreign discourse has become fully or even much more comfortable with Japanese games.
Read 17 tweets
22 Apr
retrorgb.com/mechapwn-explo… Genuinely surprised I missed this somehow until now, but it sounds like there's a great softmod that works on a decent swath of PS2s that, among other things, allows you to permanently remove the region lock for both PS1 and PS2 games.
Not a universally necessary solution, but for someone like me who doesn't run games off a hard disk (AFAIK, those programs aren't 100% compatible and I suspect many of my Japanese games would run into issues), it's great now that replacement Swap Magics are long out of print.
Still requires that you have a way to run homebrew such as Freemcboot, but if you're one to even casually toy around with a physical PS2 in this day and age, you probably already have that. The rest of the process sounds simple and it's even reversible, which is always nice.
Read 4 tweets
19 Apr
If I have one life lesson to impart when it comes to Japanese games, it's "never get into collecting Japanese Windows games" because I've got my eye on an auction whose price is quickly entering worst case scenario territory and it's fueled by a bubble that hella bums me out.
I'm probably gonna enter the fray anyway because: 1. I don't think prices on it will go down THAT much even when the bubble bursts and 2. it's my birthday soon enough god damn it, but it definitely has me regretting not jumping on it sooner before the bubble happened.
My second life lesson is "if you get into Japanese Windows PC games anyway, do it in Japan" because bar none, the best deals I've had are in shops that know what they have, but are still below average because most of their foot traffic isn't PC folks and they have to clear stock.
Read 4 tweets
19 Apr
@johntv @RyougaSaotome @Aeana @revenantkioku You two might have seen my reply elsewhere to Eric and Elliot's exchange, so I won't belabor the point too much, but I would argue there were historically presentational differences between the two, even if the line did get significantly blurred over time.
@johntv @RyougaSaotome @Aeana @revenantkioku The differentiator for me is, what is the driver of the storytelling? Does the text do so much heavy lifting players are asked to imagine everything happening on screen, possibly even the characters like in SNs? Or do the devs more explicitly define certain elements like in VNs? ImageImage
@johntv @RyougaSaotome @Aeana @revenantkioku I can understand how many look at the example pics in the OP and don't see any differences and those ambiguities have pretty much always existed. It IS worth pointing out that sound novels tended to limit their visuals to just background imagery so as to not diminish the text.
Read 5 tweets
19 Apr
As an addendum, some might (quite fairly) ask where traditional dating sims (ie: the overtly mechanical ones that I cover) fall in this spectrum. The lineage can be opaque depending on how you define the starting point of dating sims, but let's drill it down to the essentials.
If you define the genesis for traditional dating sims as they're primarily understood and played as Tokimeki Memorial, then they're most broadly descended from a mixture of Japanese adventure games, as well as PC RPG, simulation/strategy, and raising games.
Tokimemo absolutely takes inspiration from PC games that came before it, but I consider a lot of them to be evolutionary dead ends that ultimately weren't aspiring to create quite such an experience, whereas Tokimemo absolutely laid out templates more games expanded upon.
Read 7 tweets
19 Apr
@revenantkioku @RyougaSaotome I hope you two don't mind me butting in. One thing to bear in mind with this ambiguity is that "visual novel" as a term itself originated as a brand name for what was essentially another company's sound novels, as Chunsoft owns the trademark for "sound novel" specifically.
@revenantkioku @RyougaSaotome To me, they're genres that absolutely have similar goals, but do have different philosophical approaches. Sound novels take the "novel" part rather seriously. The text is the real star of the show and any visuals or sounds present are there to augment it, but not supplant it.
@revenantkioku @RyougaSaotome It's why a lot of Japanese fans got quite uppity about 5pb's remake of Kamaitachi no Yoru into a genuine visual novel where each character has proper portraits and voice acting; they felt that it deviated from the entire point of the original game's presentation. ImageImage
Read 7 tweets

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