Things have been quiet around here lately. But you want to know something? For me, they haven’t been quiet at all! Rather, I will now update with such shocking news that even I can still hardly believe it. The news?
A fully translated and implemented Tales of Phantasia PSX patch.
Coming your way some day.
Okay, so the some day part wasn’t very inspiring, I know. Nor was the PSX part. Let me start from the beginning. Not long ago, I was speaking with someone about general romhacking and translating related topics. Whenever I talk about such things, I can’t go long without talking about Tales of Phantasia. As my friends would tell you, it’s a project that has always been on my mind. From the beginning I have stated my desire to work on a true hack of the game, producing a version of my translation that could be fully experienced as the game is meant to be. Problem is, I have no skill with coding or hacking in any way. That’s why those of you here have been left to a text document containing the script. It’s not the way you want to play the game, and I know that. It’s not the way I wanted it to be played after all. Spring forward to this discussion with this romhacking friend of mine, he offers the opportunity to work on the game I’ve always dreamed about working on. Needless to say, I jumped at the opportunity. Moreover, we toyed with the idea of taking the work on the PSX version over to the PSP. Right now, there are obviously technical challenges to doing so, but given the nature of the PSX to PSP port, it’s a project I hope to pursue as time goes on.
My intention with this project is not to take anything away from Phantasian Productions work on the PSX version of the game. Rather, I had a conversation with Cless the other day that I felt was a very positive discussion on the matter. While in the end, we were unable to reconcile the projects into a single effort, he wished our project the best and as always, I of course wish his the same. What I hope to accomplish with this translation and what Cless is seeking to do with his work remain separate entities. Cless has always taken the path of localization with his work on ToP. Anyone who has read my text guide can tell that my approach is different, with the intention of being an accessible game to English speakers while diverging as little as possible from the original Japanese text. While the project is going to be based on my work up to this point on ToP, I intend to re-examine every line of translated dialogue before making it a part of the final script we’ll be using. So this isn’t to say that I don’t consider what I’ll be doing translation-wise won’t be localization in a way. Translating for a hack is very different than translating for a text guide. It’s my responsibility to bring those characters to life in a much more real way with a hack. So even if you’ve played the game using my guide before, I encourage you to keep an eye out on this project, it’s going to be a whole new experience. Cless and I both have the same goal in the end, we want to bring Tales of Phantasia to the audience that has never truly been able to experience it. While we are going about things in different ways, I still know that much to be true.
While it’s difficult to see in the pictures, let me insist to you that given the amount of time this project has been going, having this kind of progress already is truly an inspiration to me. The hacker I’m working with is talented and helpful beyond what I could hope to describe. Working with him on this project so far has been a blast. Things are moving quickly and I love getting caught up in the pace of it all. Well, I’ve spent too much time talking and not enough translating. I’ll be busy starting soon (even starting now), so my updates may be infrequent or at least shorter than usual. That being said, I leave you with these preliminary screenshots of our progress thus far.
These demonstrate, among other things, the progress on variable width font, text extraction and insertion, and the general appearance of our font and naming conventions. And of course, if you can’t wait to get a hold of things to come (but you should!) my guide is, as always, available to you on the translation page.