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Author Topic: Translations: Lighting the dark side of the Moon: Sailor Moon for PC-Engine CD translation released  (Read 7237 times)

RHDNBot

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Update By: Supper

An English translation of Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon for the PC-Engine CD/TurboGrafx CD has been released!

Following the Makai Tree incident and the departure of Ail and An, the five Sailor Senshi enjoy a newfound period of peace. With no enemies to fight, they return to their colorful, but ordinary, daily lives. But one night, Luna and Artemis sense several mysterious shadows releasing dark energy – energy like that of a Youma. Could the vanquished Dark Kingdom have somehow returned? The Senshi have dark secrets to uncover, and enemies old and new alike to face...if they can ever stop goofing off at the arcade.

Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon (Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon) for the PC-Engine Super CD-ROM² system is a 1994 visual novel based on the famous manga/anime franchise of the same name. A self-described "adventure-style digital comic", it has an original story set between the Makai Tree and Black Moon arcs of the Sailor Moon R anime. All five of the Inner Senshi are available as playable characters, each with their own story; their five separate plots overlap to form a larger whole. It features extensive voice acting from the cast of the TV show, as well as two original vocal songs.

In addition to translating the text, the patch adds subtitles to all voice-only scenes, and adds both transliterated and translated subtitles to song lyrics. It also includes an in-game bonus gallery of unused art and sound assets that were discovered during production of the translation. And for those who might prefer it, an alternate edition of the patch is also provided which retains Japanese honorifics and certain Japanese terminology.

This patch was the work of TheMajinZenki (translation), Supper (hacking), cccmar (editing and testing), and Xanathis (testing). Additionally, the game's vocal songs were subtitled using William A. Braell's existing translation of the lyrics. Special thanks also goes to Aerialrave, who provided a helpful tip that, despite not working out quite as planned, was instrumental in the translation being made.

The authors hope Sailor Moon and PC-Engine fans alike will enjoy the game!

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Lentfilms

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Wow, it is really impressive to see a PCE-CD translation with subtitled cut-scenes. I had always heard that this was next to impossible to hack into games on this hardware. Awesome work!

torha

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@Supper has a great taste in games for translation. Thank you! Your work looks top-notch just from the teasers alone. :)

Gamerhenky

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This translation release date now coincide with other games anniversaries. Just blows my minds :banghead:
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mikeprado30

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Really AMAZING!  Congrats to the Dream Team involved in this work.  I'll be playing it ASAP  :thumbsup:

Pennywise

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I'm curious as to how you accomplished the subtitles? I'm assuming sprites?

Btw, even though it's a fighting game, wouldn't it be fun to translate the 3D0 game?
« Last Edit: April 20, 2020, 06:10:22 pm by Pennywise »

julayla

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Wow, good job on the game, Supper. It must've been difficult to translate every piece of dialogue within the game. At least we can play this game (even if the vocal dialogue is in Japanese).

vivify93

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I've been playing for about 40 minutes now, and I must say, this translation is super impressive! It has my seal of approval. And I see that my complaints about Japanese terms and honorifics being left intact in the Genesis beat-'em-up were heard. :p

Edit -

I think I've come across the first small issue.

Spoiler:
When the other Four Kings of Heaven come for Nephrite, Zoisite says that they're looking for the Silver Crystal. I'm not sure if it was like that in the written script, but you can clearly hear Zosite say Kurozuishou, or the Dark Crystal (The small black chalk-like crystal that unveiled the locations of the Rainbow Crystal Shards). Later, the loyal section of the Four Kings present Beryl with the Dark Crystal. (This is not to be confused with the Malefic Black Crystal of the Black Moon.)
« Last Edit: April 20, 2020, 05:29:42 pm by vivify93 »
All my life I've tried to fight what history has given me.

aqualung

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Congratulations and thanks a lot for this release! It's not very common to see CD-based games translations, and you have gone the extra-mile by adding subtitles to the cutscenes. Outstanding job, people! :thumbsup:

Tarosuke

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This is amazing! I cannot wait to give this a try. It's so rare and refreshing to see a PCE-CD translation and usually means this must have taken a lot of work and effort. So a big thank you to all involved.

kaiisen

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This is so cool! I'm not a Sailor Moon fan but I'll certainly try it! Love these animated Visual Games. Been always hoping for someone to do the same to Super Adventure Rockman for PS1.

Thank you!

Supper

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Thanks, everybody! This was technically one of my longest-running projects, with the initial abortive attempt dating back to over two years ago, so I'm glad it's ultimately managed to see the light of day. (Light of the moon, I guess?)

Wow, it is really impressive to see a PCE-CD translation with subtitled cut-scenes. I had always heard that this was next to impossible to hack into games on this hardware. Awesome work!

It totally depends on the game, but subtitles are rarely going to be easy. On a relatively primitive machine like this, you have to deal with the restrictions of limited video hardware; for more advanced machines, you have to figure out where in the gigantic haystack of code to put your needle to make things actually work.

This game was actually a softball in a lot of ways: almost everything in it runs off of a single big, orthogonal scripting system, and I made the vast majority of the changes simply by disassembling and reassembling the scripts. (Not that figuring out the scripting system was "easy", but it's far neater than your average PCECD game.) The code changes were mostly small tweaks. I didn't even have to implement my own variable-width font routines, because the game supports pixel-granular text drawing operations right out of the box! All I had to do was point it at the new font and tell it how much to space the characters. For the same reason, it took almost no effort to give the text box four lines instead of the original three.

This game spoiled me so much that I'll probably be in for a bad time if I ever find myself working on a less forgiving PCECD game :(

I'm curious as to how you accomplished the subtitles? I'm assuming sprites?

Btw, even though it's a fighting game, wouldn't it be fun to translate the 3D0 game?

It actually varies depending on the scene, mostly because I was still figuring out parts of the scripting system when I started working on the subtitles. The "in the name of the moon" speech was the first thing I did, and it uses background tiles, but all other scenes except the BIOS version error message use sprite overlays. For the credits, I had to implement a special space-optimized version of the sprite subtitles due to lack of free RAM (can't load data off the CD if you're playing CD audio!)

And while the idea of doing a 3DO translation kind of tickles me in theory, my understanding is that it's not a very good game. Plus I've just never been able to get into fighting games personally, so it's not the kind of thing I'd really spring for.

I've been playing for about 40 minutes now, and I must say, this translation is super impressive! It has my seal of approval. And I see that my complaints about Japanese terms and honorifics being left intact in the Genesis beat-'em-up were heard. :p

Edit -

I think I've come across the first small issue.

Spoiler:
When the other Four Kings of Heaven come for Nephrite, Zoisite says that they're looking for the Silver Crystal. I'm not sure if it was like that in the written script, but you can clearly hear Zosite say Kurozuishou, or the Dark Crystal (The small black chalk-like crystal that unveiled the locations of the Rainbow Crystal Shards). Later, the loyal section of the Four Kings present Beryl with the Dark Crystal. (This is not to be confused with the Malefic Black Crystal of the Black Moon.)

Heh, I was hoping you'd enjoy this one ;)

I figure pleasing everyone is a lost cause no matter what terminology I pick, but I can at least try to make things palatable for all the different breeds of Sailor Moon fan out there. I took a poll on the Sailor Moon Forum during editing that showed most people in favor of leaving honorifics out, but a few did want them, so I decided it wouldn't be too hard to just put out two different versions and hope people found at least one of them tolerable.

Spoiler:
Excellent catch on Zoisite's line there! I haven't run it by Zenki yet, but it does look like it should be "Black Crystal", not "Silver Crystal" (いいわ、黒水晶を持ってすなおについてきてくれたら...) It's an understandable slip-up since they do want the Silver Crystal and that's what they spend most of the time talking about, they're just not looking for it in this particular scene.

I'm really glad to have a hardcore Sailor Moon fan playing this who can pick up on these things -- I like the series, but I'm really only casually acquainted with it compared to the rest of the fandom. Thanks, and let me know if you run across anything similar so we can correct it for a later version.

And just an FYI in case you didn't see the note in the readme, because it'll certainly set off alarm bells for you: there's a scene in there where Ami refers to how the Senshi "used to live in the Crystal Palace on the Moon". That's a writing mistake in the original game, not a translation error. We double-checked just to be sure, and she really does specifically refer to the Crystal Palace, even though it doesn't exist at this point in the timeline. This game was developed in 1994 despite being set earlier in the series, so apparently the writer got the later plot developments mixed up with the earlier ones.

vivify93

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Thanks for the reminder. I read the readme of each project I try pretty closely before I start said project (Bug warnings are a godsend!) but I know not everyone is as fervent as me. I plan on playing each route at least once, but let's hope the only other things I have to say about this is praise. :thumbsup:

Sorry to derail, but... While on the subject of Sailor Moon games, have you played Sailor Moon: Another Story T-Eng v2.04 at all? What'd you think, if so?
All my life I've tried to fight what history has given me.

Supper

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Thanks for the reminder. I read the readme of each project I try pretty closely before I start said project (Bug warnings are a godsend!) but I know not everyone is as fervent as me. I plan on playing each route at least once, but let's hope the only other things I have to say about this is praise. :thumbsup:

Sorry to derail, but... While on the subject of Sailor Moon games, have you played Sailor Moon: Another Story T-Eng v2.04 at all? What'd you think, if so?

Sadly, no :( I've been meaning to play Another Story for a very long time, and I was quite glad to see you were working on a modernized version of the translation (my experiences with fan translations from 1999 have been poor, to say the least). Unfortunately, I've never quite gotten around to actually playing the game. I've come to spend a lot of the time I used to use for playing games working on hacks and translation projects instead, so the number of patches by other people that I get to try out has dropped off a lot. Given the sheer age of the old AS translation, though, I'm guessing it really needed the help you gave it. I'll be sure to drop a review if I get the chance to try it out.

CO_Andy

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Have you looked at the other Sailor Moon game on PC-Engine CD, Supper? Would it be anymore difficult to hack than this game?

azurewind

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Edit: Thanks for the patch! It works fine!

I just had to combine the Redump files into one bin and got it patched!
« Last Edit: April 22, 2020, 11:48:49 am by azurewind »

ran

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Can someone help with the installation of the game? I did everything as explained in the readme file, but Turbo Engine always freezes on this frame upon loading the patched .cue file.


Mattio221

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This is CRAZY!!! I was on youtube looking to see if Sailor Moon R for Gameboy ever got translated yet. I spent hours on this site patching a bunch of roms only a few days ago.... and anyways in the comments someone linked to simply the front of this site.. that I've been on a billion times... and my eyes couldn't believe what was filling my screen!!! Hell yes! Anyone translating Sailor Moon games is a hero. Thank you, can't wait to spend the night checking it out.. wait it's only 1:22pm. Btw, these smileys totally take me back.  :laugh:

Supper

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Have you looked at the other Sailor Moon game on PC-Engine CD, Supper? Would it be anymore difficult to hack than this game?

In technical terms, Sailor Moon Collection probably wouldn't be any more difficult to work with than this game. While I haven't looked at it beyond watching videos, I believe it's by the same developer and strongly suspect it runs off of the same scripting system. The real issue is that it's basically just not an interesting game. It consists of a few generic minigames that have nothing to do with Sailor Moon beyond containing pictures of the characters, with your reward for completing them being grainy GIF-quality digitized stock footage from the anime and a few random unconnected visual scenes. Whereas this game seems to have had some real work put into developing the story, music, etc., Collection is pretty much just a super-generic licensed game for kids.

Edit: Thanks for the patch! It works fine!

I just had to combine the Redump files into one bin and got it patched!

Yeah, I understand that some common distributions of Redump-verified discs use this "split BIN" format where the tracks are split up into separate files as they would be with ISO+WAV+CUE, but are all simply listed as binary files regardless of type. I may add support for this format to the patcher in the next version.

Can someone help with the installation of the game? I did everything as explained in the readme file, but Turbo Engine always freezes on this frame upon loading the patched .cue file.


Ah, oops. This is supposed to be an error message telling you the backup RAM is full. I didn't even realize this existed in the game, so it's not translated. It should say something like this:

Code: [Select]
There is nowhere to put the save data. Please delete content from the backup memory and start the game again.
In other words, you either have too many save files from other games, or the emulator isn't emulating the backup RAM correctly (or at all). I don't know anything about Turbo Engine, so see if there's anything in the settings or documentation about configuring the save data. Make sure backup RAM isn't disabled, and if it's an option, set the emulator up so that every game gets its own individual backup RAM instead of sharing it with other games.

Alternatively, you can try using Mednafen or Ootake, since we tested the game on both of those emulators and it should work fine with them out of the box.

Thanks for bringing this issue to my attention. I'll fix the error message in the next version of the patch.

julayla

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The game really was a neat OVA for the Japanese fans. Wish the game actually explained the plot holes that weren't part of the ending (AND show where Beryl reincarnated was at). At least the stories in there were fun.