Hey everybody! Ryechu here. I hope everybody has been well! Today, I get to share with all of you my love for Ammolite titles! I had the honor of working with TBAC (one of my best friends in the localization industry who I have worked before with on projects outside of MangaGamer—and no, you cannot have him) on Sweet Switch! This is actually my first official localization, but this is my third editing project with MangaGamer!
Does anybody remember my tester’s corner for Sweet Young Bride? Remember when I said that I owned the entire Ammolite collection? I wasn’t kidding about that. Needless to say, when this title was put up for grabs, I instantly said yes. And I am so glad that I did.
Today, I’d like to talk about the game a little bit, but I’d also like to talk about what the editing process is like for me, having originally come from the fan-translation community. Perhaps it’s the same old song and dance compared to the rest of the editors on the MG team, but hopefully it’ll give some insight to how I work!
So let’s talk Sweet Switch. Originally released in 2015 (four months before Sweet Young Bride, funnily enough) as すうぃ～と☆SwitcH, Sweet Switch tells the story of Ryuuichi Takato, a student at a local school. It’s nearly time for the Sakura Festival, and the entire school is getting ready for it. However, Ryuuichi isn’t really involved in much of anything. It’s not because he’s a terrible person or anything of the sort, it’s because of his glare. Think Ryuuji from Toradora! (Hmm… I wonder if there’s a connection there…) His glare is so scary that people instantly run at the sight of it, and as a result, he’s been branded a delinquent. Or, in some cases, they get so incredibly turned on by it that they instantly jump his bones. And thus, we have Sweet Switch.
We have two heroines to choose from (or you can choose both!). The beautiful, blonde girl pictured here is Sara Lafarge. She’s the student council president, super commanding, and definitely not a tsundere. Nope, not at all. The other girl, and my personal favorite for… reasons, is Fumino Hirohata. She’s got the shy girl routine down to a science, serves as the secretary for the student council, and, if you look at her character image, you’ll notice that her bangs cover her eyes. What happens when those bangs are parted? Perhaps there’s more than meets the eye (literally) going on here… There are a ton of variations in this game, and the art is GORGEOUS. I’ve always really enjoyed Ammolite’s art—even on their older titles.
Okay, I don’t want to spoil the game any further, so let’s talk about the editing process for a bit. Specifically, I’d like to discuss how smooth the process is.
When I’m editing, I perform three passes per script. The first pass is simply reading the script. In other words, does the translated script make sense and flow properly compared to the CG in game? If there are any major discrepancies (and this does happen from time to time in visual novels—where the CG doesn’t exactly match up with what the original Japanese is saying), I discuss them with the TL to try to figure out how to keep as much of the original TL as possible while making it make sense. We don’t just literally translate the entire game and give it you—we translate it into an experience that you will enjoy reading. It’s easily my favorite part of the job.
The second pass is the more technical one. Grammar, spelling, making sure ellipses have three periods and not two or four—every line has to be looked at to make sure it reads (and sounds, in the case of moans) well. If I’m unsure about a line, or if the current iteration just sounds awkward or out of place, I work with the TL to either figure out a better translation.
Sometimes, however, a few problems fall through the cracks, and that’s why the third pass is the counterediting pass. Essentially, the TL checks over the edits I’ve made, and notes any issues that may still remain. Sometimes they have a better wording based on my suggestion, or sometimes one of us misunderstood the line. Since we’re a team, it’s best to check over each other’s work to make sure everything is as perfect as it can possibly be. Localization is definitely not a “one and done” thing.
After that’s done, we send it off for scripting and beta testing, and if the beta testers find anything… well, we make a note of it and make sure to look for it the next time!
Maybe it sounds simple to you, but there’s actually a lot of work we put in to make sure you have the best experience, and it is absolutely worth it. I’d love to see more nukige titles come to the West, and I hope you do, too! Let us know what you think, and be sure to pick up Sweet Switch when it releases!
If you’d like to keep up on everything that I’m doing with and outside of MangaGamer, be sure to follow me on Twitter (@JRyechuR)!
See you next time!
~J “Ryechu” R