The video games tag feature posts related to both console, mobile and online computer games plus, the translation and localization necessary for their distribution worldwide.

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Pikachu in Hong Kong

Pikachu rename angers Hong Kong

Pikachu in Hong Kong
Pikachu toys line the shelves – its worldwide success expands from video games to other merchandise

Pokémon Pikachu rename leads to protests

The release of two new Pokémon games by Japanese game-maker Nintendo has angered Hong Kong.

As it is around the world, Hong Kongers are very familiar with the tiny, chubby, yellow-furred electric mouse known to them as Bei-Ka-Ciu. But a move to unify the names of 151 Pokémon characters to Mandarin Chinese has upset fans and “localists” alike.

Pikachu’s new Cantonese pronunciation sounds like Bei-ka-jau – nothing like its original.

Regional Pride

The name change, which may seems trivial to some, is part of a bigger problem in Hong Kong as locals see it as the “mainlandization” in the current climate.

Nintendo’s decision to translate all game characters “ignores Hong Kong’s culture,” a spokesman from a Facebook group known as Petition to keep Regional Chinese Translations of Pokémon said. “There’s no respect for it.”

“We are aware of the reasons behind Nintendo’s translation, presumably to make it easier for purposes such as publicity, but the move ignores a lot of players. We hope the Hong Kong market can be taken seriously and treated sincerely.” Locals, fans and activists took to the streets at the Japanese consulate to protest because they believe Cantonese — along with culture and tradition in Hong Kong — is being supplanted by Mandarin.

Regional Language

Cantonese is spoken in Hong Kong, while Mandarin Chinese is the official tongue of Mainland China. The Chinese government sees Cantonese as one of the many dialects used throughout China; however, those protesting believe Cantonese is a proper language and on par with Mandarin.

A Cultural Icon

“Pikachu has been in Hong Kong for more than 20 years,” said Sing Leung, one of those who took part in the demonstration. “It is not simply a game or comic book, it is the collective memory of a generation.”

Chinese Variants

There are different variants of Chinese depending on region. We offer Chinese translation for all variants.

The STAR Team

Source: BBC World News

How Nintendo’s Mario Became Wario

How Mario became Wario by Nintendo

Wario by Nintendo ©2007

Mario became Wario, how a little translation changed a game character

Game players around the world love Mario and his antagonist, Wario. Although Wario isn’t a bad guy; he’s just a baddish, tougher version of Mario!

How did Nintendo come up with the name Wario?

Actually there are a couple of interesting facts around this.

The first and simplest explanation, of course, is that they wanted Mario’s competitor to be the exact opposite to him: a “bad” Mario.  This is why the characters look alike. In coming up with the name, they considered using a similar name to Mario. How could you make the name Mario sound bad?

Second explanation: in Japanese (Mario was invented in Japan), the phrase “warui” (悪い) means “bad”. Simply changing M to W gives you “Wario”, which sounds similar to warui. A little translation and a play-on-words gives you a new name.

Thus, Bad Mario, or Wario, was born.

The STAR Team

Trivia: Wario first appeared in the 1992 title Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins for the Game Boy.

Moonwalker: The Making of a Video Game

Moonwalker video game screenshot

Moonwalker Video Game Screenshot

Moonwalker Video Game 1988

What was it like working for Michael Jackson?

Damian Scattergood, our managing director, actually wrote the video game back in 1988. The game was based on Michael Jackson’s anthology film of the same name. A dance technique: Moonwalker was one of Jackson’s trademark moves. The name was actually dubbed by the media and not Jackson himself.

Watch the Interview with Retro Game Geeks

Watch Damian’s recent interview with Retrogames about his work on Michael Jackson video game.

“A game like no other”, Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker video game was a success.

A full transcript of the interview is available to read on RetroGameGeeks.co.uk.

Moonwalker video game 1988

Moonwalker Video Game, 1988

The STAR Team