Fan Translation Offers A Clearer Picture Of Classic Zelda

by Jeff Cork on May 20, 2011 at 03:54 AM

Anyone who grew up during the NES era knows that localization wasn't always quite as polished as it is now. Some of gaming's most enduring memes, such as "I feel asleep" and the notorious "All your base are belong to us" were the result of those early days. Another well-known example comes from Nintendo's original Legend of Zelda. The translation was rife with odd phrasings, such as "Let's play money making game" and "Ones who does not have Triforce can't go in." A fan has translated the game from the original Japanese, and the results are illuminating.

For example, according to GlitterBerri's translation, "Let's play money making game" becomes "Will you play the money-making game?" and "Ones who does not have Triforce can't go in" cleans up to "Those without the Triforce cannot pass." Some of the more interesting translations derive from missing functionality (the NES lacked the microphones that were built into the Famicom's controllers, so a reference was removed), or from decisions to omit seemingly obvious game tips. The "Eastmost penninsula is the secret" line was originally text explaining to the player that if your wallet was empty you wouldn't be able to fire any more arrows.

It's pretty interesting stuff, and it's definitely worth browsing through.


[Via GameSetWatch]