Danganronpa Translation Announced!

Hey everyone! After many, many months of working in secret, Project Zetsubou is proud to finally announce our fan translation of Danganronpa: Hope’s Academy and Despair’s Students and, along with it, the release of a playable demo (at the end of the post)!

What is Danganronpa?

Danganronpa–developed and published by Spike and first released in Japan for the PSP on November 25, 2010–is a unique kind of adventure game. Described by its creators as “psychopop” and “high-speed action mystery,” Danganronpa takes your typical whodunnit mystery and straps it to a rocket, fusing puzzle-solving with real-time action elements inspired by shooting and rhythm games–and it does so to incredible effect. But novel gameplay isn’t the only thing Danganronpa has going for it: with music composed by the amazingly talented Masafumi Takada (killer7God HandNo More Heroes); a full roster of bombastic, eccentric, and shamelessly irreverent characters; and an intricate story clocking in at just under 1000 pages and jam-packed with twists and turns, there’s more than enough to keep you engrossed from start to finish.

Kibougamine Academy

Set in a private school in modern-day Japan known as Kibougamine Academy, Danganronpatakes fifteen “Super Duper” high school students and pits them against one another in a game of life or death. Just moments after stepping through the doors on his first day, the protagonist–Makoto Naegi–finds himself struck with a sudden bout of nausea and dizziness. He collapses, to wake up nearly an hour later in an unfamiliar, empty classroom, with thick, immovable iron plates over each of the windows.

Naegi takes his first step into Kibougamine Academy.

Remembering he was scheduled to meet up with the other new students, Naegi steps out into the eerily empty hallway and searches for the entrance hall. There, he finds the other fourteen new transfers standing around a monolithic metal contraption–resembling the door to a bank vault or a military facility–sealing them in. Two large guns with cameras attached hang from the ceiling. Not quite sure what to make of the sight, and nothappy that they appear to be stuck inside the academy, the fifteen introduce themselves to one another, and Naegi learns he’s not the only one who lost consciousness when he stepped through the gates. As they finish, the television on the wall flickers on, and a half-black, half-white robotic bear called Monokuma orders everyone to assemble in the gymnasium.

Monokuma lays down the rules.

There, he explains the situation: everyone’s trapped inside the school, for life. The only way to escape is to murder one of the other fourteen students and get away with it, at which point the “villain” will “graduate” and be allowed to leave. After a murder is committed and the body is discovered, the students will be given a short amount of time to perform an investigation–examine the crime scene, gather any evidence left behind, interview witnesses–after which a Class Trial will be held. During the Class Trial, the students will discuss the information they gathered, debating their conclusions and attempting to determine who the culprit is. At the end of the trial, each student casts a ballot for who they think the “villain” is. If the majority of students select correctly, the “villain” will be executed, and everyone else will be allowed to resume their lives within the academy. But if they’re wrong… everyone except the “villain” is executed, and he is free to leave, all by himself.

Some helpful suggestions.

Faced with a declaration so outlandish and preposterous, many students express disbelief at Monokuma’s words, but as one student points out, the veracity of his claims isn’t what’s important. Unusually calm and composed, Byakuya Togami says, “No, the real problem… is whether someone here, in this room, took him seriously…” The gymnasium goes silent, and, as Togami’s words echo in everyone’s minds, the curtain rises on a harsh, unforgiving game of trust and betrayal, of friendship and rivalry, of life and death. Will their hope of escaping with their lives prevail, or will they be crushed, one by one, until nothing but despair remains?

The Cast

Voiced by: Megumi Ogata (Shinji Ikari – Neon Genesis Evangelion; Sailor Uranus – Sailor Moon)

Voiced byChiwa Saitou (Lavie Head – Last Exile; Hitagi Senjougahara – Bakemonogatari; Homura Akemi – Puella Magi Madoka Magica)

Voiced byHekiru Shiina (Hikaru Shidou – Magic Knight Rayearth)

Voiced byMegumi Toyoguchi (Winry Rockbell – Fullmetal Alchemist; Revy – Black Lagoon)

Voiced byKouki Miyata (young Vash – Trigun; Kouta Tsuchiya – Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu)

Voiced byMiyuki Sawashiro (Suruga Kanbaru – Bakemonogatari; Celty Sturluson – Durarara!!)

Voiced byMasaya Matsukaze (Kyouya Ootori – Ouran High School Host Club; Kane McDougal – Bodacious Space Pirates)

Voiced byKousuke Toriumi (Hajime Saitou – Hakuouki series; Match – Toriko)

Voiced byYouko Hikasa (Mio Akiyama – K-ON!; Maya Kumashiro – Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin)

Voiced byTakahiro Sakurai (Suzaku Kururugi – Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion; Polar Bear – Polar Bear’s Cafe)

Voiced byMakiko Ohmoto (Kirby – Kirby series, Super Smash Bros.)

Voiced byKujira (Orochimaru – Naruto series; Otose – Gintama)

Voiced byKazuya Nakai (Roronoa Zoro – One Piece; Mugen – Samurai Champloo)

Voiced byAkira Ishida (Keiju Tabuki – Mawaru Penguindrum; Athrun Zala – Gundam SEED)

Voiced byKappei Yamaguchi (Usopp – One Piece; Shin’ichi Kudo – Detective Conan; L – Death Note)

Monokuma – The Principal
Voiced by: Nobuyo Ooyama (Doraemon – Doraemon)

Demo? Huh?

Prior to the release of the full game, Spike post a free demo on the PSN and the game’s official website. The demo contains an original short story not present in the full game, to give players a taste of the characters and the gameplay. Completing the demo gives you a couple little bonuses in the full game, so we highly recommend you give it a play.

Never mind all this, I just want to play the demo!

Then go download it! And then check out our Help Wanted post and see if there’s anything you can do to lend a hand. And then follow us on Twitter and tell all your friends about us.


And, here are a bunch of the screenshots of the game in action.

Previous Post


  1. Anna

     /  2012/12/01

    Er. A few of those titles sound a little forced. Celes’s is literally just “gambler” in Katakana, I don’t see why you had to go with that. And “fireballer” for Leon. Mondo’s and Fukawa’s don’t really get the point across either. One-percenter actually made me think of Togami.

    And Luckster. That’s just kind of corny. 😦

    • fistmetalcrackem

       /  2012/12/01

      I like the titles, personally. As someone relatively familiar with the language, I’d have to say “gambler” in katakana has a certain edge to it to a Japanese ear that doesn’t really translate when you leave the word in English. “High roller” carries the implication of action, excitement, and romanticism – perfect for Celes.

      In this case, I think “corny” is better than “boring”. I understand where you’re coming from, but the game is supposed to be over-the-top. A dry translation just wouldn’t do it justice.

      • Pretty much exactly our thoughts. I understand that not everyone’s going to be happy with how we translate everything, but at the very least, we tried to explain our decisions and the thought process that went into each of them on the translation notes page.

  2. Ariel

     /  2012/12/01

    I can’t figure out the password for your z7 file containing the demo. =(

  3. Wow, good work guys!

    Although… Mondo’s title is extremely awkward to me. Before now I’ve really only heard “one-percent” apply to the extremely rich. (which means i would have started laughing and never stopped laughing if it was togami’s title.) Nothing to do with motorcycles. Maybe Delinquent? Gang leader? Ehhh…..

  4. Ari

     /  2012/12/01

    Just curious, but are these releases going to be playable on a pc emulator too, for those of us without psp consoles?

    • It’s kind of sort of playable in JPCSP. The last time I tried it (rev 2528) it had some pretty bad framerate issues in all but the smallest rooms, and it couldn’t play movies. However, enabling Media Engine at least got music and voices working half of the time. It also had this weird habit of pausing itself for whatever reason.

  5. Olga

     /  2012/12/01

    wow. This game seems very interesting 😀 So bad I don’t have PSP 😦 I hope it will run on emulator 🙂

  6. fistmetalcrackem

     /  2012/12/01

    I may be able to help out with image editing. Is there an alternative means of contacting you? I’m unable to use IRC for whatever reason.

    • Added our group email address to the About Us page. We hadn’t had an account at the time I wrote up the Help Wanted post, which is why it isn’t in there. Fixing~

  7. Yay!!! Super Duper Excited!

  8. Irina

     /  2012/12/01

    Thanks for all your work!!! One question :3 Will you be able to port this translation to android version of the game? It would be great, too

    • We’d like to, but we don’t know how to modify the data.

    • Patching the Android and iOS versions would be a dream come true. However, as BDH said, we’ll need to figure out how to crack the thing(s) first, which doesn’t seem to be a trivial task. By all means, if anyone wants to lend a hand with that, get in touch!

      • Well, I really hope that you’ll manage to pull it off with the Android version, that would absolutely great. Can’t really provide any succour in that matter, so I’m just going to keep my fingers crossed that you’ll find someone to help out with it.

  9. Ash

     /  2012/12/01

    Would this work on a PS Vita? My PSP has been dropped a few too many times, so…

  10. pinni137

     /  2012/12/01

    I don’t really get some of the title translations here… why is Hagakure a shaman? Isn’t that a witch doctor? He’s just a fortune teller, he doesn’t do any curing of illnesses. Togami’s title is ok, but it’s a bit too general. His Japanese title is “scion”, which is basically just an heir but more gender specific. Fukawa’s title being “bookworm” doesn’t really suggest that she writes books (it sounds like she only reads them). I don’t really understand why Mondo’s a “one-percenter”, and I wouldn’t’ve guessed Leon’s a baseball player just from “fireballer”. Also, I think Celes’ is ok but some people might not understand what a “roller” is.

    • reikken

       /  2012/12/01

      — I don’t really understand why Mondo’s a “one-percenter” —


      Anyway, I tried the demo, and it’s pretty good except kuma kinda ruins it. WTB patch that removes his voice at the very least

    • pillowcaselaw

       /  2013/01/29

      A “shaman” isn’t a “witch doctor”. The term comes from indigenous Siberian tribes, and is actually closer to “medium” (someone who communicates with the spirit realm / realm of the dead). Has nothing to do with magic cures.

      • SyberiaWinx

         /  2013/01/29

        The game manual actually does give English terms for most of the talents. Hagakure’s actually is listed as Shaman.

  11. wingdance

     /  2012/12/02

    This looks really cool, I’ll definitely try it out!

    Out of curiousity, how much does the full game cost?

    • It’s $34ish from CDJapan. AmiAmi has it for a little cheaper, but they’re sold out right now, and I have no idea if/when they’re going to get more. (Just as a note, you will be needing the “Best” edition. Spike made a number of changes for the rerelease, and that’s what we’re working with.)

  12. Archangel

     /  2012/12/02


    Just contact this guy, he translated most of it already, and much better at that. Super duper and those titles just sound silly and out of place, and you forgot to translate Monobear too.

    • SmellThis

       /  2012/12/02

      I don’t think they should. It’s not a good translation.

      • Ripley

         /  2012/12/02

        What makes you say that? Some of his phrasing is a little clunky/overly literal at times, but I think Orenronen did an awesome job. And honestly, I prefer a simple, straightforward translation to one with the unnecessary backflips of forced ~creativity~ that lead to phrases like “One-Percenter” and “Fireballer.”

      • SmellThis

         /  2012/12/02

        Ripley, do you know Japanese? If you do, care to tell how Junko’s and Hifumi’s lines translate like this:
        It’s not like they had to do heavy modification in my case… – Junko
        The benefits of being young and healthy… if you know what I mean. – Hifumi
        Those lines don’t exist in the J script.
        If you don’t know Japanese, please don’t talk out of your ass.

      • A Person

         /  2012/12/25

        It’s a perfectly good localization and you’re kidding yourself if you think a literal Japanese to English translation is good localization. Orenronen addresses a lot of this in an interview he did on retsutalk: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GOk3sWRggE

    • SyberiaWinx

       /  2012/12/26

      I must agree with the person who urged using the terms from Oren. Things like “Monobear” and “Super High School Level” just sound WAY better, and it seems that most fans of this game came to be fans by reading his Let’s Play, so those are also things we are used to.


     /  2012/12/02

    I think that Super-Duper High School is not a very good translation of that phrase.

    Other translations of the phrase could be used to describe something about the person or what the person is, but Super-Duper High School limits it to just the latter, which is why “Luckster” exists. It seems really awkward. Did you have any specific reason for using that specific translation of the phrase?

  14. 超高校級のクレーマー

     /  2012/12/02

    Hey, glad to hear that someone is working on this series. I’ve played through both 1 & 2, and read both Zero books. Danganronpa is probably my favorite game series at the moment, and I’d like to see it done right.

    I’m not going to argue with you about most of the student titles, even though I believe that you should keep them as close to the originals as possible to cover your asses in case more students show up in further sequels (i.e. Otaku), and because terms like Fireballer and One Percenter aren’t as nearly well known outside of the USA (?) as you think. I’m sure you guys have discussed it amongst yourself enough by now, and are probably waiting to hear responses from people who went through the demo.

    Sakura’s title, however, I will fight for. Sakura is based off of Hanma Yuujirou, the main villain of the Baki series (overall same appearance, same title of Ogre. Not 鬼, but オーガ). In Baki, Yuujirou is absolute strongest creature on the planet. I feel like that was what they were trying to evoke in Sakura’s character. She’s supposed to be a pillar of absolute strength. I feel like “Heavyweight” is too specified and doesn’t quite cover it. “Fighter” on the other hand is simple like you guys said, and that’s exactly what you want in this case.

    Here’s hoping that you’re open to opinion. Again, I’m really excited that someone is working on bringing this series to a wider audience, and hope you guys manage to make it through to the end.

    • Thanks for the comment! We really appreciate the constructive feedback. You have a very good point about Sakura’s title, and we’ll definitely take it into consideration.

  15. I’m an idiot. I read somewhere in the blog about which release of the game you are working with but I can’t seem to find it now.

    Any chance you can let me know which version or where I can find this information again on the site?

  16. Orlesia

     /  2012/12/02

    If the point of a translation is to make a game accessible to a new audience, I think you’re really missing the mark with a few of your choices here. “High Roller” is a decent title for Celes, but when English-speaking audiences see the phrase “One Percenter,” they’re infinitely more likely to associate it with someone like Togami than someone like Mondo. And “Fireballer” for Leon? Honestly, kind of makes me think he’s some kind of wizard. Or maybe a pyromaniac. Either way, it doesn’t let me know that he’s a baseball player at all. Your choice to translate Maizono’s line as “I’m an esper.” also seems like it would confuse people – or at least like it’s an unnecessarily obscure choice of words. Just let her say that she can read minds.

    Leaving “Monokuma” and “Kibougamine Academy” untranslated is just silly. Especially “Monokuma.”

    The fonts in those screenshots are also a little strange/hard to read. The one that the characters’ names are shown in, for example, has an almost-identical K and H, so I’m left reading their names as Hyouko Hirigiri, Yasuhiro Hagahure, etc.

    • Archangel

       /  2012/12/03

      Esper would have me think she is making a Final Fantasy reference.

      Another thing to note is Hakagure’s title of shaman, yet several of his conversations are about how he is not an ocultist. And bookworm brings to mind someone who reads books, not writes them.

    • The feedback is appreciated – we know that a lot of folks feel strongly about some of the translation differences in our version, and I think some good points have been raised. Things are subject to change… well, except for Monokuma, because I guarantee we ain’t budgin’ there. Just know that although we’re nearing completion, this is still a work in progress and we welcome constructive criticism so we can make this project truly special, as a game like this only deserves.

      I agree about the font – this is something our (hopefully, very near) future graphic artist can lend a hand with.

      As for the esper line, that’s actually not a liberal interpretation at all, but straight up literal (エスパーですから). It’s also voiced each time she says it, which made the decision of sticking to a simple literal translation an easy one. (Besides that, I don’t think “esper” is a terribly esoteric word in this post-FF6, post-Haruhi scorched hellscape, but that’s just me)

      • NM

         /  2012/12/04

        Why won’t y’all translate Monokuma to Monobear, despite changing the kuma puns to bear puns?

  17. Nobunmyonga

     /  2012/12/02

    Those titles are all kinds of stupid. D-, see me after class.

  18. Just Passing By~

     /  2012/12/02

    I’m actually quite fond of your way of translating. I’d rather something that puts a fun little spin on things than something that reads as awkwardly stunted and clunky (such as the Let’s Play). Fireballer fits just fine. Sure, one mightn’t know right away that’s it a baseball reference but after Leon is introduced it all makes sense, and seems to fit with his hotheaded personality. I didn’t know what One Percenter was either until I gave it a google, but it’s not something worth throwing a hissy fit over.

    Best of luck with the rest of the patch, I can’t wait to be able to read the rest of this!

  19. Mick

     /  2012/12/04

    Really glad to see this getting translated, cant wait to play it and best of luck with it. I think you could probably afford to be a tad more literal with some of the transaltions. Realistically speaking the kind of people interested in, and likely to, play this game are going to have a passing knowledge of Japanese culture – especially as it relates to video games and anime, so you probably dont need to localise quite as “hard”. As others have mentioned “Fireballer” and “One Percenter” might make sense, especially given the reasoning in the translation notes, but there are probably better choices. “One Percenter” in particular has a much more prominent meaning in western culture, you could probably leave it as Bosozuku or Bancho perhaps? To be honest even “Biker” would be preferable to “One Percenter” Fireballer also seems misleading, and unlike one percenter I dont think it even fits very well. Fireballer in baseball terms is specifically about pitching whereas as mentioned the character is both an excellent pitcher and hitter. If baseball player is too boring, and I dont really buy that it is, but if it is I think even “baseballer” – while not really proper english, works better.

    • Thanks for the comment. 🙂 We’re definitely taking all the (constructive) feedback we’re getting into consideration, and we’ll be making a few changes where we think they’re necessary.

  20. NekuXero

     /  2012/12/05

    You guys are great. I though I would never get to play this in english, what a nice surprise. And I think your way of translating is great so keep up the good work!!

  21. Man, this game is one of my favorites, really, thank you, and good luck! o/

  22. Hicku

     /  2012/12/12

    I have my own reservations on the comments (particularly “Luckster”), but they aren’t too bad. That said, if these screenshots are anything to go on, it looks like you’ve done really well with the dialogue! From what I know of the characters, it seems to convey their personalities really well, which is what I’d always been worried about. I’ll definitely be keeping my fingers crossed for you going into the home stretch!

  23. Hicku

     /  2012/12/12

    Question! I see your progress bar off to the side, but I’m having some trouble with some of the abbreviations – I get prologue, the chapters, and stuff, but what is FT? Or TL, TLC, and ED? If you could answer this, I’d appreciate it.

    • Sure, no problem! I’ll just go over all of them, in case anyone else has the same question.

      TL – Translation
      TLC – Translation Checking
      ED – Editing

      PL – Prologue
      CH# – Chapter #
      EP – Epilogue
      FT – Free Time events
      SYS – System text
      ISL – Dangan Island
      IF – The extra “What If” story in SDR2

  24. wingdance

     /  2012/12/17

    I just played through the demo and I wanted to say that it was a lot of fun! I’m really excited for you guys to finish the game. Thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to play this.

  25. Pallidion

     /  2012/12/22

    I personally like Monokuma. I mean ‘Hagakure’, ‘Togami’, and ‘Makoto’ doesn’t get english meanings because it’s a name, and Monokuma is a name too, so I find it a good reason for you to keep it like this.
    People are just too darn used to the LP, they need to learn to adapt.
    Luckster is kind of cheesy but after reading the translation notes, I understand where you’re coming from. But I think either the Japanese has the same term as that in English oooor they just used luck but either way, you did a good job thinking about it.
    I like the Heavyweight better than wrestler since we really haven’t seen Sakura wrestle but more of a martial artist.
    Shaman matches with Hagakure’s hair so much that I can’t even-
    Anyway, thank you for translating. Like I said some people are immature and whiny. Hey, at least someone’s taking the project!

  26. SyberiaWinx

     /  2012/12/26

    Any chance you could edit the download page and mention the password thing. I’m not at all familiar with this kind of stuff, and I dropped that file into the ISO folder and got corrupted data about a dozen times before I read this page and saw the comment asking what the password was. It never occurred to me you had to try and open the file and enter a password to get to another file.

  27. SyberiaWinx

     /  2012/12/26

    Also, I’m willing to be a Tester. I’m currently helping with the editing, proofreading, and beta-testing for the When They Translate group’s version of the Higurashi visual novels. I’m one of those people who tends to notice every little thing that sounds off or is grammatically wrong. I am also someone who is a bit of completionist in games and go out of my way to get every little bit of dialogue, so I’m bound to notice things others miss.

  28. SyberiaWinx

     /  2012/12/26

    I’ve also got a question. Will the full-game patch work with the UMD version of the game? Like I said in another post, I’m not at all familiar with this kind of stuff. I’m not a fan of messing around with my PSP and modding and all that. Plus, it would be helpful to know if I should start looking for a way to import the game.

    • The patch is based on the UMD version of the PSP The Best re-release from 2011, but in order to use it, you’ll have to rip the game to an ISO and apply the patch to that. Then you can put the patched ISO on your PSP, just like the demo. It sounds kind of complicated, but it’s actually a pretty simple process. When we’re closer to the release, we’ll write up a post with a full tutorial explaining everything people need to do to prepare to use our patch.

      • SyberiaWinx

         /  2012/12/27

        Is it possible to tell me more via email? I sent in that thing to be a Tester, but it would be helpful to know how possible this is for me to do.

      • Sure, I’ll be happy to answer any questions you have.

      • SyberiaWinx

         /  2012/12/29

        You never did, though. I’m not even sure you got any of those emails I sent about the other things I noticed, since I never got any replies.

  29. hi, i want to know something about the iso of my dangan ronpa UMD ,
    im using a psp 1000 version 6.60 with the 6.60 pro-c , my iso files run without a problem, but the dangan ronpa iso just makes my psp restart when i select “new game” or “options” when i choose the “install data” it says that it cant be installed because i need more than 32 mb
    but my memory stick have 16 gb and im using just 13
    i changed the iso modes and still with the same problem

    • I’m using exactly the same setup, with ISO Mode Inferno, so there’s probably not a problem there. If I were to guess, I’d say your ISO probably didn’t rip correctly. Here are the hashes for a proper rip:
      * CRC32: D4ED9D84
      * MD5: E653E69DA189D9ACD71C598297FF5E31
      * SHA-1: FDF4875A5E4B631579DB18512A12468469FC3B74
      * Size: 1,801,584,640 bytes
      If that doesn’t match what you have, I’d try ripping it again. And if you still have problems, maybe go ask around on a forum that specializes in PSP hacking stuff, since that’s not really my area of expertise.

  30. SyberiaWinx

     /  2013/02/05

    I’m getting pretty upset here. I imported the game and planned to put it on the memory card that has the demo and the CFW stuff on it. I was able to run the demo. Copying the game to my computer per your instructions did not work. I kept getting an error message about parameters. I finally managed to upload the file to a site that then sent it to my email, where I downloaded it onto my computer and then put it on my memory card. I tried it, and when it seemed to be working, I was relieved and moved on. Today, I realized it’s not actually working at all. It gets to the main menu just fine, but there’s no sound when I press start or move my cursor. There was in the demo, so I’m pretty sure that’s not right. When I choose “New Game”, it freezes, and my PSP becomes unresponsive. I have to turn it off and restart it. I paid a lot for this game, and it was a struggle just to do that and get the ISO off it and on my card. What is going on?

    • I emailed you.

      • SyberiaWinx

         /  2013/02/05

        I emailed you back. This needs to be figured out, because you’re going to have quite a situation if people pay all this money to purchase the disk and then find out they can’t rip it.

  31. Karnoire

     /  2013/02/15

    I hate to rap on the titles like everyone else, but… urgh, some of those just don’t quite work out.

    I can understand being creative with the titles- it’s an excellent idea, and I support it- but players should be able to understand what their talent is without a Google search. Fireballer, sure, I guess, but One Percenter? It’s been complained about before, but I’m saying it again- I don’t connect “One Percenter” with “Gang Leader”, I connect it with “rich” or “high class,” or, worse, “aristocrat.” It’s already not good if the readers are confused by the titles, but we definitely don’t want anyone thinking of them as something else entirely, especially not as another kid’s ‘talent.’

    For the other titles, “bookworm” tends to be understood as someone who reads books, not someone who writes them. “Otaku” is understood as someone into anime and manga, not necessarily an artist of one, even with fan manga.

    Regardless, good job on the translations everywhere else. It looks excellent!

    • SyberiaWinx

       /  2013/02/16

      A lot of people agree, but aside from Mondo’s title, they don’t seem willing to listen to us. Touko’s should just be “Writer”, and Leon’s should just be “Baseball Player”. Celes’ should just be “Gambler”, and Togami should just be “Heir”. Togami isn’t just some noble person, he’s an heir. There is a difference.

  32. Kenneth

     /  2013/02/16

    First of all, thank you very much for your work – I was unbelievably excited when I found someone was working on a localized version of Dangan Ronpa! I can’t wait until the finished product comes out, and when the demo ended…ugh, I was mentally keyboard smashing for more.

    That being said, I hope you guys don’t mind if I repeat some of what has already been said. I realize you might be getting frustrated, but as a fan of this series, I think it practically an obligation to at least let you know my thoughts – and truthfully, I’m rather hoping enough similar opinions might change your minds.

    (And it doesn’t help that I saw you guys wrote that “One Percenter isn’t changing” and…well, I’m super glad you took feedback into consideration.)

    First of all, the debate between Super Duper High School and Super High School Level. About the latter, you said that it didn’t read much like a title, but I heavily disagree (not to mention it just rolls off the tongue!). The “Level” part at the end implies that whatever is tacked on is at a certain status, that being excellence worthy of a Super High School (Kibougamine). The “Level” thus makes anything attached to it a title, yes?

    I just don’t feel like Super Duper High School _____ gives off that same vibe. It feels like the SDHS and whatever aren’t very connected. If you take into consideration that it’s “Chou Koukou Kyu No ____,” this becomes more apparent; the attachment is OF Super High School…Level. If you don’t have “Level,” it doesn’t make as much sense. This also works much better with Despair at the end, because “Level” can be used with both nouns and adjectives.

    Which brings me to my second point, the individual titles. For titles, I think simplicity might be best – something that gets the point across clearly and without fuss. I read in the TL Notes that the team would play around with alternatives, but this seems unnecessary. The simple terms encompass a larger meaning, like you’ve acknowledged with Sakura being “Fighter” instead of “Heavyweight.” Using more embellished terms seems rather akin to right-clicking in Microsoft Word and choosing a random synonym – more often than not, it doesn’t contribute anything because words have very specific context.

    For instance, Togami being “Aristocrat” does imply some form of nobility, and that’s not true – he’s just insanely, incredibly rich. He’s not like Sonia from DR2, who’s part of an actual royal family; Togami’s upper class, yes, but not nobility. Therefore, I think “Heir” would work best. Simple, and it even includes the “Son” part to show he’s going to be inheriting stuff.

    As for Fukawa, “Bookworm” really does imply voracious reading rather than writing – “Writer” is sweet and simple, and isn’t Fukawa famous for writing romantic novels? Same thing with Kuwata, “Baseball Player” is more representative of what he really is. “High Roller” is actually really clever though, I like it a lot. Gambler doesn’t seem classy enough for Celes, haha.

    And for our protagonist, Naegi…I’m seriously stuck. On one hand, “Luckster” works well as a noun…but using “Good Luck,” an adjective, would serve as a much better contrast against “[spoilers].” Maybe I’m just used to “Good Luck,” but that works extremely well for me (and dare I say it, most DR fans). Your TL notes say that Luckster describes Naegi having the good fortune of being selected, but at the same time his presence really DOES bring the others luck. After all, he’s the one solving the cases!

    Anyway, I realize I’ve been rambling for a LONG while, wow. I’m sorry for this super long comment…but I hope I’ve explained my position well enough, especially concerning Super High School Level. I’ll end it here by saying I highly appreciate the work you guys are putting into this, and I hope you consider the feedback. Cheers!

    • Thanks for taking the time to write all that out! We do appreciate the feedback (especially when it’s presented in a reasonable, well thought out fashion like this).

      I’m not going to respond to everything, since–as you said–a lot of your points have been made by others, and we’ve had discussions about them there. So I’m not ignoring them, just acknowledging that we’ve seen and are aware of your thoughts.

      However, I would like to go into SDHS vs SHSL a little. I avoided going into any detail as to why we aren’t fans of SHSL in the translation notes because I didn’t want it to seem like we were going out of our way to bash oren’s translation decisions or something. But it’s been brought up several times now, so I think it’s worth going into some more detail about.

      Ultimately, aside from not thinking it reads like a title, I don’t think SHSL accomplishes what it’s supposed to as an English phrase. They’re a bit unwieldy as is, so let’s start by looking at the two phrases without their modifiers (super/super duper). Also, I’m going to use a completely original title, so we can get a fresh look at how the phrases work without worrying about being used to how existing titles read/sound.

      High-School Goalie: a goalie in high school. Pretty straightforward.

      High-School Level Goalie: a goalie at the level of a high-schooler. There are two interpretations you can take here: the first is that the goalie has the same skill level as a high-school student (i.e. not quite college-level or pro). This doesn’t necessarily imply they actually are in high school. For example, put me on a soccer field and you’d probably be calling me a preschool-level goalie, even though I’m very much not four years old.

      The second interpretation is that “level” is being used to denote the goalie’s “level” in school–aka a high school student. While the latter interpretation is possible, it’s weird and unnatural, and it’s not something you’re likely to hear people using. If you want to denote someone is in high school, you’d just say “high school.”

      In which case, the former interpretation is the more likely one. The problem with that is that the “level” specifically emphasizes the fact that the goalie’s skill is equivalent to that of a high-school student’s and adds the ambiguity of them possibly not being in high school–because why would you say that they’re on the same level as a high school student if they actually were one? It’s kind of counterintuitive. That’s like saying Stephen King’s writing is professional-level. I’d sure hope so–he is a professional. On the other hand, you could call a fanfic author’s writing professional-level, because it distinguishes them as not being one while still being on par with one.

      Now, let’s add completely different modifiers to both of them.

      First-Rate High-School Goalie: Because “high-school”‘s only function here is to clarify the goalie’s place in the educational system, “first-rate” attaches to “goalie” unhindered. They’re a first-rate goalie who happens to be in high school.

      First-Rate High-School Level Goalie: As I mentioned above, the “level” in “high-school level goalie” explicitly denotes the goalie as having the skill level of a high-school student. So a “first-rate high-school level goalie” would be a goalie whose abilities are at the top of whatever is considered high-school level. The goalie isn’t objectively exceptional, just exceptional for a high-schooler.

      And that, ultimately, is the problem I have with the phrase. The “level” part, which is a literal translation of 級, only serves to muddy the waters. It both adds an unnecessary ambiguity (that the subject is probably not actually a high-school student) and an unnecessary restriction on their talents (as awesome as they might be, they’re still no better than the best normal high-schoolers). The latter point, especially, is where the big problem lies, because these students are far beyond a high-school level of ability. The “high school” part of the phrase should emphasize how extraordinary they are, not act like a ceiling.

      You can swap Super Duper/Super back in for “First-Rate” and it works the same way–you’re just trading one adjective for another.

      • Kenneth

         /  2013/02/16

        Ahh, now I understand your viewpoint a lot better – and I think I understand why our opinions diverge. It’s a matter of how we see “Super” and “High School” work together.

        For you, my understanding is that you view “Super” and “High School” as separate modifiers. In other words, the (going with your example) hypothetical Goalie is in high-school, and is super at their field. So a high-school goalie who is super. Thus, the “Level” is redundant…because with SHSL you see a high-school level goalie who is super, but still at high school level, and that seems to cancel each other out?

        But I could make the same argument, that First-Rate High School Goalie has “First-Rate” modifying “High School Goalie.” Interpreted like that, it imposes the same restriction on talent you noted, because then the student is only first-rate as a high-school goalie rather than being a first-rate goalie who is in high school.

        For me (and I assume others who support SHSL), I view “Super” and “High School” as a single modifier – so it’s more akin to “Super-High-School.” The high school ITSELF is super. When I add Level at the end, I see someone whose level is at that of THE Super-High-School, Hope’s Peak, a denotation of excellence that goes beyond high school. The Super High School Level Goalie is thus a goalie at the level of a super-high-school.

        So rather than muddying the waters, so to speak, I think the SHSL title is really an indication that these kids are worthy of attending Kibougamine – which makes sense, since the school actively scouts its own students. The school decides if you’re worthy, and if you are, then they deem you a SHSL Goalie or whatever the case happens to be. It’s a more dignified title than Super-Duper, which seems to run contrary to Kibougamine’s whole premise.

        Long story short, with such a long title…the connotation is heavily up to interpretation. But since a lot of people like SHSL, I think that interpretation is most common, and it really seems to fit Kibougamine’s atmosphere better. I realize this is your project (and again, I highly, HIGHLY appreciate it), so I’ll just leave it at that and stop beating a dead horse into the ground. I hope you guys give it one last consideration though.

        Also, thank you for the prompt response! It was nice to be able to talk to the developers, haha, the honor’s all mine.

      • You make a fair point, and I must admit, it had never occurred to me that you could look at it like that. It still seems kind of backwards, but I definitely understand where you’re coming from.

        Though, as for it being “dignified” or “serious” or whatnot, I don’t quite buy that. I’ve seen that point made a few times before, but I, for one, think that as soon as you throw “super” onto the beginning of an official title, you’ve jumped off the “dignified” train and straight into silly land. Sure, you have words like superintendent and supervisor, but aside from the fact that the “super” in them is all but transparent to a native English speaker, it’s being used in a different way there. The “super” in superintendent and supervisor comes from the Latin prefix “super-” meaning “above, beyond.” On the other hand, the “super” in SDHS/SHSL is an informal usage meaning “excellent” or “first-rate.” It reads more like Super Mario Brothers or Super Nintendo.

        But I think that’s just fine and fits in perfectly with the series’s atmosphere. The game is, in a way, all about reversal of expectation. Things we’ve been trained to believe should be taken seriously are played with and made fun. For example: blood isn’t shown as dark reddish-black and grotesque–it’s neon pink, not a color we usually associate with death and despair. The game juxtaposes the seriousness of the situation–kids forced to murder each other–with lighthearted imagery. It’s surreal.

        And that’s why I think “super”/”super duper” work perfectly here. You’d expect a private boarding school like Kibougamine to be all business, and–in most cases–I’d be all for playing the translation straight, using a more formal title, like “World-Class Goalie.” But in all the time I’ve spent with this series, I’ve never gotten the impression that “playing it straight” was ever one of its goals. It’s silly where it should be serious so that when it does buckle down, you’re not worn out and exhausted and numb.

        [Touching on some potentially spoilery material after this, so don’t read if you’re afraid of spoilers.]

        There’s also the the first mentioned in chapter 4 that plays a big role in the latter half of the game. Really early on in Zero, it’s revealed that a name very similar to that is in official use among the Kibougamine Academy staff. I don’t know how oren translated it (and I’m not going to say how we did, both for /spoilers and because it might start a riot), but I don’t think it’s possible to make a name like that sound stiffy and dignified and serious without a whole lot of linguistic gymnastics. On the other hand, making it less serious gives the whole thing the same kind of counterbalance the pink blood does to the murder.

        [Spoilers done.]

        But, really, this is all just a matter of perspective. We interpret the series and its goals a certain way, and we’ve done our best to reflect those views in our decisions. We also understand that other people might not see things the same way we do, and that’s fine, too.

  33. I can see how Super Duper High School makes sense but are people going to overthink it that much. Also Togami works better with Heir. I won’t back it up, just opinions.

  34. Veneesla

     /  2013/05/25

    I don’t know if this has been brought up before or if it’s just a CFW problem or it’s actually how the game is meant to work or what. It’s just, when I played the demo, everything was in English except the voiceovers which were in Japanese. I kinda expected it to be all in English and I assumed from your Youtube demo that it would be. I’m just curious to know if the game is meant to function like that.

    • The demo we released here contains the original Japanese voices. If you want the English dubbed version, there’s a separate download link on the guest post.

      • Veneesla

         /  2013/05/25

        Oh, thank you! I did enjoy listening to the Japanese voices and now I’m excited to see the English ones in action. Again, thank you for all your hard work!

  35. Romil

     /  2013/05/27

    Hey!!!Now how much time shall it take till its completed ….estimated time would be more than enough…

  36. Ellie

     /  2013/06/17

    Hi, I tried to install the demo to my PSP, but when I put the iso in a folder under games all that shows upp is a “corrupted data” message. I HAVE unzipped the file. I tried opening the iso and copying those files too, but same message. Does anyone know what I am doing wrong?

    • Put it in a folder named ISO on the root of your memory stick, not PSP\GAME\blah.

      • Ellie

         /  2013/06/17

        Thank you so much! I’m new to CFW so this helped a lot.

  37. but wher is the full game?

  38. Hi! I was wondering where I could download the font… I see that you used it at the top ^w^

  39. aldrex

     /  2015/01/08

    can you give the fonts used in the translation?

  40. Jess

     /  2015/01/15

    one thing, the translation for the Super High School Level ___ is wrong. for example, Leon says Fireballer. which isn’t anything like it should. it should be Baseball Star. and Sakura is the Martial Artist. not Heavy Weight.

  1. [News]Dangan Ronpa angielski demo patch « Przyczajony mangowiec Ukryty gracz
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  4. [Versión 1.0] Demo de DanganRonpa (PSP) | TranScene
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