|
Your continuous donations keep RPGWatch running!
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » The Witcher - An Hour @ Rock, Paper, Shotgun

Default The Witcher - An Hour @ Rock, Paper, Shotgun

November 5th, 2007, 04:35
Rock, Paper, Shotgun has a volley of Witcher coverage, centred on a feature called an An Hour With The Witcher. First, there's some discussion about Atari's editing of the original Polish script, based on claims from a poster at Gamefaqs that he worked on the translation and knows lines were cut (Polish fans have discussed the differences on our own forums, so this is not new):
Someone called Martin Pagan posts on Gamefaqs, explaining that the script for The Witcher was given a decent translation, and then “butchered” to result in the garbled mess that now exists in the game (see the clip above - my favourite moment - and I stress, this is one continuous scene, no editing).
We can’t be certain Pagan is for real, but if it’s true, it certainly explains some things. Is this Atari trying to cut corners and save money on the voice recording?
I'm not sure how useful one hour's play is but here's a snip:
The second issue is the writing. Now, it’s not bad, bad. It’s just sub-average and amateurishly converted. Characters use anachronisms unconvincingly - for example, the Sorceress being referred to as a “Babe” a lot by the boss Witcher . The problem isn’t of course him using a diminutive (though there’s a particularly funny bit where he tells another Witcher to treat her with a bit more respect, before going back to calling her babe) but… “Babe”. Avoiding cod epic fantasy is one thing. This is another. […]
But it’s worth remembering there’s a difference between writing and story. Most posturing writers will have probably read Robert McKee’s STORY and remember a section where he describes working as a script reader, noting that he recommended rejecting many stories which were beautifully written but fundamentally dull but never, ever wrote a rejection review for a story which was emotionally brilliant but apparently written by a Neanderthal in his own faeces… because if he did, he’d have been sacked. The name on the door is story department.
And in the story department, The Witcher actually interested me. I liked the world. I wasn’t so sure about the characters, but I wanted to know what happened to them. I was even interested in what the agreeably sado-mascohistically clad magicians were up to (especially because one of the bad guys was called The Professor, which ties into an RPS running joke we’ll tell you about another time). I wanted to know what happened next. Which, for the first hour of an RPG, no matter what failings it has, has to be counted as something of a success.
More information.

-= RPGWatch =-
Dhruin is offline

Dhruin

Dhruin's Avatar
Watcher
Super Moderator
RPGWatch Team

#1

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 11,964

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 04:35
Let's hope there is a Polish Mod team that cares enough about the continuation of the franchise to do a proper translation to English, to help bring new fans to The Witcher, since clearly the Polish dialog is superior.

Trust me, most of the names I have been called you can't translate in any language…they're not even real words as much as a succession of violent images.
Acleacius is online now

Acleacius

SasqWatch

#2

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,491

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 05:49
All i can say is, if they think this is bad voice acting, they should spend twenty hours with The Chosen.

I agree there's a lot of obviously incomplete and jumbled translating though.

Where there's smoke, there's mirrors.
magerette is offline

magerette

magerette's Avatar
Hedgewitch
RPGWatch Team

#3

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,929

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 08:59
Ouch, The Chosen must have been painful.

I was hoping for text, but having the wrong voice dialog with the right text dialog might cause trauma, Weeee!

Trust me, most of the names I have been called you can't translate in any language…they're not even real words as much as a succession of violent images.
Acleacius is online now

Acleacius

SasqWatch

#4

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,491

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 10:03
Okay, what am I missing?

I keep hearing about substandard voice acting and substandard dialog … are we talking about the same game here?

Has no-one played the "Spell Force" games? Or how about "Star Wolves"? THAT is bad voice acting. The version of The Witcher that I've been playing the past week or so is so far beyond "All your base are belong to us" that calling it "poor" voice acting comes off as more than a tad elitist in my eyes.

When it comes to the actual words I'm also confused. If the polish version is actually written by the reincarnation of Shakespeare, then yes, something most definitely got lost in translation. Otherwise, I've played PLENTY of other games with more simplified, less intelligent and less elaborate dialog than what is found in The Witcher.

Am I the only one who hasn't turned into a member of "The New Spoiled Kids on the Block" or have I just become more mellow in my old age?

"Chess in particular had always annoyed him. It was the dumb way the pawns went off and slaughtered their fellow pawns while the kings lounged about doing nothing that always got to him; if only the pawns united, maybe talked the rooks around, the whole board could've been a republic in a dozen moves." - Commander Vimes in Thud! by Terry Pratchett
fatBastard() is offline

fatBastard()

fatBastard()'s Avatar
Hello, I'm a Zombaholic

#5

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Just outside of Copenhagen
Posts: 777

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 10:55
Hey guys, I think you're missing the key point here. This is not about editing the original Polish script, its about editing the original English translation. Most probably to save on voice overs. This has been confirmed by others, see for example Sande Cen's (posting with her real name) post in the official Witcher forum. So what was originally exceptional dialogue ends up being just adequate or even bad.

I'm just curious if the original English script (obviously by CDP) will ever become available.

“Of all the journeys you will undertake in this life, uncovering the secrets you hide from yourself is the most dangerous voyage of all.” – Shyha Tuhlwin, Therish Philosopher
Lethal Weapon is offline

Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon's Avatar
Sentinel

#6

Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 257

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 13:23
I think if Atari has skimped on the full original English translation voiceovers in a misguided attempt by some non-gaming beancounter in middle management to save a buck(which would be fairly typical), it would be great to have the full text translations released in some form, even subtitles. That would make the game more comparable to what the devs intended. In addition to stuff apparently being whacked up and shortened, there are a few cutscenes and the like that just don't make sense the way they're worded.

However, I don't think the caliber of voice acting is anywhere near as bad as some of the comments at Rock Paper Shotgun are making out. (Example: the post from just_finished_okami. )

Where there's smoke, there's mirrors.
magerette is offline

magerette

magerette's Avatar
Hedgewitch
RPGWatch Team

#7

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,929

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 14:06
Again, I think this kind of problem comes from conventional attitude toward video games i.e. the majority still regard the games as products and not arts as Mark Wilson hit the nail on the head in his article "Video Game Reviews Are Broken, Please Fix". After reading some reviews on the Witcher, I decided to order UK version, thinking it was more faithful presentation of the original version but…really, could somebody fix it?
Dusk is offline

Dusk

Sentinel

#8

Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 278

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 14:13
Originally Posted by magerette View Post
I think if Atari has skimped on the full original English translation voiceovers in a misguided attempt by some non-gaming beancounter in middle management to save a buck(which would be fairly typical)
We are used to that.

Beyond Divinity - no German voiceacting
Neverend - no German voiceacting

I guess there are several more examples.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
Alrik Fassbauer is offline

Alrik Fassbauer

Alrik Fassbauer's Avatar
TL;DR

#9

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Old Europe
Posts: 15,848

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 14:19
Holy cow, the translation really was butchered. (Look for Bukary's post)
KazikluBey is offline

KazikluBey

KazikluBey's Avatar
Sentinel

#10

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Sweden
Posts: 525

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 14:43
Thanks for the link, KazikluBey—I just saved the post to notepad so I can refer to it. That's a huge difference not just in 'ambience', but in meaning.

Where there's smoke, there's mirrors.
magerette is offline

magerette

magerette's Avatar
Hedgewitch
RPGWatch Team

#11

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 7,929

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 14:49
It's nice to see TTLG is still alive and kicking, too.
Dusk is offline

Dusk

Sentinel

#12

Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 278

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 19:35
Now that I think about it, Cd Projekt could release the original text file so it can be replaced.
Do any of the developers post here at the Watch?
Could we get something started?

Trust me, most of the names I have been called you can't translate in any language…they're not even real words as much as a succession of violent images.
Acleacius is online now

Acleacius

SasqWatch

#13

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 2,491

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 20:00
Polish: Geralt: No, but I'm sure you'll tell me.

English: Geralt: No, but tell me.

Uhh.., not only cut but also changed what stay.
zima98 is offline

zima98

zima98's Avatar
Watchdog

#14

Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 117

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 20:05
Originally Posted by Acleacius View Post
Do any of the developers post here at the Watch?
Could we get something started?
Not that I know, but at least one does at the Codex.
KazikluBey is offline

KazikluBey

KazikluBey's Avatar
Sentinel

#15

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Sweden
Posts: 525

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 20:05
Originally Posted by Acleacius View Post
Now that I think about it, Cd Projekt could release the original text file so it can be replaced.
Even you replace the text files there is still the matter of the spoken dialogues and animations. Around 25% of the dialogue has been cut so my best guess is that such a mod would only work with the Polish version, otherwise a very extensive patch including redoing the voiceovers etc, highly unlikely to say the least.

“Of all the journeys you will undertake in this life, uncovering the secrets you hide from yourself is the most dangerous voyage of all.” – Shyha Tuhlwin, Therish Philosopher
Lethal Weapon is offline

Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon's Avatar
Sentinel

#16

Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 257

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 20:07
One could simply cut the speech, or use the Polish VA with English subs.
KazikluBey is offline

KazikluBey

KazikluBey's Avatar
Sentinel

#17

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Sweden
Posts: 525

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 20:11
And continuously pausing the game to have time to read the whole sentence before the other guy starts speaking. That's an idea.

“Of all the journeys you will undertake in this life, uncovering the secrets you hide from yourself is the most dangerous voyage of all.” – Shyha Tuhlwin, Therish Philosopher
Lethal Weapon is offline

Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon's Avatar
Sentinel

#18

Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 257

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 22:32
Originally Posted by Lethal Weapon View Post
And continuously pausing the game to have time to read the whole sentence before the other guy starts speaking. That's an idea.
You know, some of us do watch subtitled movies a fair bit. And many read faster than they talk (I know I do).
Prime Junta is offline

Prime Junta

RPGCodex' Little BRO

#19

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 8,540

Default 

November 5th, 2007, 22:51
Playing the game with the french version. Perhaps I'm not someone with high expectations but the voice acting seems to be pretty good to me.
vanedor is offline

vanedor

SasqWatch

#20

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Quebec city
Posts: 457
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » The Witcher - An Hour @ Rock, Paper, Shotgun
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 20:22.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright by RPGWatch