Shuffle and Soul Link Font Patches

So over the Halloween sale I picked up Soul Link from MG, and also at the same time decided to grab Shuffle too. Both games default to my least favorite second least favorite font in the known universe (behind Comic Sans), Courier New, so I quickly fixed up a font patch for both games.

Shuffle! Font Patch

Soul Link Font Patch

I’ve also set up a Game Patches section on the site which has a collection of all the patches I’ve released, so you don’t have to go looking around for them later.

Customs Declarations?

So I finally got my latest swag in from Japan.  This time I ordered from J-List since they had a good deal on a game I wanted to play from a looong time ago.  Customs didn’t open my package though, so I took a look at the declaration.  ‘See other invoice’ as a description of contents.  Are they even allowed to do that? I have a feeling that you aren’t. 😛

The other invoice itself is located below enough tape that it wouldn’t be a stretch to suggest that it would be actually easier to open the box rather than actually extract the invoice from the envelope.  But anyways, lets look at the invoice.

I’ve seen a lot of unique invoice declarations, but this one is new to me.  I’m sure there’s a joke to make here, but it’s too much of a stretch.  I’m not really sure what to think about it. J-List isn’t unique here, everyone I’ve imported from has tried to play down the contents, including Amazon Japan.  It seems pretty standard practice, but this one is still unique.  It’s funny though, if absolutely everyone lies to the government about what they’re importing, I wonder what the point of it is?

The ‘glue’ in question.  Yeah, I’m like… 6 years behind the times, but it’s a game I’ve been meaning to play and the time may be right!

Well, they must have done something right though since customs didn’t open it.  They always open my games, Canada customs is pretty paranoid that way. It’s like they just presume that everything from Japan is immoral and need subjugation by the censorship cops.  I’m kind of amazed you can get away with declaring goods in that way though. Maybe if they catch you lying you’ll get in trouble, I don’t really know!

Launch Mangagamer Titles In Steam

For a while now, I’ve been trying to get my Mangagamer games to launch from steam’s game library as a non-steam application. Unfortunately, the DRM that is built in with Mangagamer releases crashes because of how Steam hooks into the games. Downloading a cracked version is of course one option, but it’s kind of a pain and I have quite a few games.

Luckily, it turns out there’s an easy solution.  All you need to do is enable compatibility mode for the game executable in question, and it will launch properly in steam.  I’m unsure exactly why it works, it doesn’t require you to set any OS compatibility in particular, just that it’s enabled.  Either way, now I can launch my games from Steam and creep my friends out by having it show when I’m playing an Eroge!

Why Oh Why

I just want to go on the record and say: sometimes this game (Koihime Musou) scares me.  The fact that… it… is voiced by Norio Wakamoto just makes it weirder!

Da Capo Dialog Update Released!

Alright, it’s done! As I mentioned in detail in my last post, Kotori Love ExP contains the shared route story and Kotori’s route for Da Capo Plus Communication, which is an improved/expanded version of the original Da Capo. It also gives the game a much needed editing pass over the original release (back when Mangagamer’s releases weren’t as high quality) to make the game much more readable. The original translation wasn’t so much bad, but it was in desperate need of an editing pass to make it flow properly.

So what I’ve done is taken all of the matching dialog from Kotori Love ExP and ported it back to the original Da Capo. Things don’t line up exactly, so not everything is updated, and the individual character routes will use their original translation since they aren’t in Kotori Love ExP. Obviously updated content from Plus Communication doesn’t make an appearance, just lines that were the same in both versions.  That said, there’s still a huge amount of text that was updated, with approximately 260 of the games 600 script files receiving updated text.  Maybe I’ll give a full count sometime, but it makes up about ~40% of the game dialog.

They're both the same lines from the game's opening scene. The bottom screenshot is the updated translation.

Porting it has been kind of an adventure of it’s own.  Normally I would attempt to automate the process, but the scripts from the two versions are different enough that that’s not really possible.  So what it came down to was manual comparison and text insertion.

It's kind of embarrassing some of the strange things that made it in the translation...

After a bit I realized that just manually copying over lines was going to take ages.  There’s thousands of lines that are in need of updating, and just the act of copy/pasting that much makes me a sad man.  Eventually I wrote some tools that rips the dialog from each of the game scripts and puts them into a comparable format.  I used Beyond Compare to compare the two, because out of all the diff/compare tools I looked at it was the only one that allowed (effective) comparison of entire folders. After that it was just a matter of going through the slow process of merging lines that made sense to merge, skipping lines when the story diverged, and making small tweaks to lines where it’s needed.

The actual comparison process. Boring right? At least one click to merge a line makes it go quick.

The whole project gave me an interesting glimpse at exactly what was changed for the Plus Communication version.  It’s not just the new characters, but a lot in general was updated.  Some particularly awkward scenes and development have been outright replaced, some scenes are extended to make them flow better, and characters are added to other scenes which increases the amount of time the characters are interacting with each other.  Oh, obviously also new CG, new character stand art, and improved ‘gameplay’ aspects.  It’s a real shame that they aren’t planning on bringing this over, because it gives Da Capo a rather impressive face lift.

So yeah, that’s about all there is to say about it.  You can download it below, it’ll work with both the download version and package versions of the game.  It also includes the font fix.  I hope at least someone out there finds it useful!  If you don’t already have a copy of Da Capo, you can pick it up over at Mangagamer.com.

Download the Da Capo Dialog Update Patch

 

Da Capo Translation Update?

So I’ve been playing Da Capo recently, which is one of Mangagamer’s earlier titles. It came out roughly around the time where their translations are kind of sketchy. They’re good translation wise, but there’s no… flow. Maybe they just didn’t have an editor back then, who knows!

This was more of a stand out issue in Da Capo than it was in Suika I think because Da Capo has more humor and just general randomness, which doesn’t come across very well in a stiff translation. I think Suika’s story came across a lot better (despite it was probably the same translator) probably just because the script works better with a direct translation.

But! Mangagamer released one of the Da Capo fandisks, “Kotori Love ExP”. The fan disc contains Kotori’s stories from Da Capo Plus Communication (the updated version of Da Capo with new characters and content), Da Capo Innocent Finale (an all ages retelling of the DC story), the other fan discs White Season, After Seasons, Christmas Days, as well as a new scenario featuring Kotori.

The key here is Plus Communication, the Kotori Love ExP version is the main game except it won’t let you continue on any story other than Kotori’s. That means that the entire common route for Plus Communication is actually already translated. Most of the games content is the same as the original though, just with extra scenes with the new characters. Since I’m just playing Da Capo for the first time, and I happened to already own a copy of Kotori Love ExP, I decided that when playing Kotori’s route I should play through the updated version of the game instead. Why not?

I wasn’t sure if Mangagamer would re-translate the content that was already translated for Da Capo, but it seems they did actually do that. It looks like they did a full re-translation, or at least a serious re-editing, of all the game content, which is quite obvious when you play the two side by side.

Well, even though Mangagamer won’t fix the translation of their old games, and likely won’t release Plus Communication fully in English, we do have a re-translation available for all of the game’s shared content (scenes that appear before the routes branch off). It’s only the first half of the game, but it’s still better than nothing right?

So what I’ve started doing is actually port the translation back from the new translation in Kotori Love ExP back to the original Da Capo where the scenarios actually overlap. I’ve got the first two days done, and while it’s kind of tiring, boring work, it’s not really that hard. And, hopefully when it’s done it can be used to provide a more enjoyable experience for the common route, and maybe even Kotori’s route if it’s not too different in the Plus Communication version.