Why can't Devs from Japan release their games with English on the PSN store ?
They could just create subtitles for and translate the text. Cheaper than getting VA
There's more to it than that. Good translations take a long time and more money. Give Muramasa a playthrough on Wii then play the Vita version when you can to see the difference between good and bad translation. Then you have culture to take into account and perhaps things that are fine in Japan would be offensive or not understood in America.
Localization is a process, even when it's rushed and VA's are not hired. Weaboos aren't enough to make a localization worth it. They need a slightly broader audience, which is why more effort is put into localizing games. It sucks, but it's the right thing to do.
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I don't think people would care that much if the translations are good or bad as long as the game is playable for them and can understand it even a bit.
The big question is... Why do some games include English in western developed games, and some remove them...? Ubisoft released Assassin's Creed for the Vita in Japan with system-language detection... So if your system is set to English, the game is in English... But if your system is set to Japanese, the game is in Japanese...
However, if you buy Rayman for the Vita in Japan, it will always be in Japanese, regardless of your system settings. What's up with that? Space can't be an issue. It's RAYMAN, for crying out loud.
It even happens with PS3 games, too! And those are blu-ray!
Konami dummied out the English for Silent Hill Downpour on the PS3, but left the English in for Silent Hill Book of Memories on the Vita.
It seems like developers will leave English in the Japanese releases for Vita exclusive western games, but not for multiplatform games... Weird, huh?
Because language is not the only barrier that determines when games get localized. They also need to get permission from copywrite/ trademarks owners for each respected country. Just because something has been given the okay for use in one country does not mean it applies to all countries.
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Guerrilla Soldier posted...
Costs too much. Companies make moves to turn a profit, not to break even.
As for text translation costs it really depends on the game, dubbing is an order of magnitude more expensive. As in terms of publishing cost I think that is up to how the PSN publishing method works, which I have no idea.
On steam, with the exception of a few major companies(EA, Activision and Capcom), if you release a game in the US, you released it worldwide. I believe that is possible because AFAIK Valve has offices on in the US so they don't have to bother with foreign laws, taxes, publishers, etc. Sony has a office in almost every country so publishing on a sony platform is probably more troublesome.
Another problem is consumer acceptance. Here in Japan is very common to see Western games(even AAA games) with only Japanese text/subtitles. Lots of games, specially on the PC don't even have Japanese support at all. After all it's English. Everybody is "supposed" to know English. On the other hand I don't think there are that many people in the west and particularly in the US that are willing to support a game in Japanese, even if it's subbed in English. Not even AAA Japanese games like Mario/Zelda, MGS or FF will do well. Unless it's really niche title that the devs are absolutely sure that the target public won't mind Japanese but most will actually prefer it(Hatsune Miku for PS3 I believe is the prime example), then I don't see it happen.
I want some awesome Japanese games translated and published, but as physical copys. I can't digital only stuff, because the games take up to much space. This why I want Earth Defense Force for the Vita, but going to import a copy. Might not be translated, but you don't need translation for a run and gun kind of game.