The Japanese video game developer and publisher Square Enix (formerly two companies called Square and Enix prior to 2003) has been translating its games for North America since the late 1980s, and the PAL region and Asia since the late 1990s. It has not always released all of its games in all major regions, and continues to selectively release games even today depending on multiple factors such as the viability of platforms or the condition of the game itself. The process of localization has changed during that time from having a one-person team with a short time and tight memory capacities to having a team of translators preparing simultaneous launches in multiple languages.
Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd. is a Japanese video game developer, publisher, and distribution company known for its Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Kingdom Hearts role-playing video game franchises, among numerous others. Several of them have sold over 10 million copies worldwide, with the Final Fantasy franchise alone selling 144 million, the Dragon Quest franchise selling 78 million and the Kingdom Hearts franchise selling 30 million. The Square Enix headquarters are in the Shinjuku Eastside Square Building in Shinjuku, Tokyo. The company employs over 4300 employees worldwide.
Square Co., Ltd. was a Japanese video game company founded in September 1986 by Masafumi Miyamoto. It merged with Enix in 2003 to form Square Enix. The company also used SquareSoft as a brand name to refer to their games, and the term is occasionally used to refer to the company itself. In addition, "Square Soft, Inc" was the name of the company's American arm before the merger, after which it was renamed to "Square Enix, Inc".
Enix Corporation was a Japanese video game publisher that produced video games, anime and manga. Enix is known for publishing the Dragon Quest series of role-playing video games.
The companies' first major projects were Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy , which each proved successful enough to launch video game franchises. Since then, the majority of the games produced by the companies have been localized for Western audiences, although the process was not given a high priority at Square until the international success of Final Fantasy VII . A dedicated localization department was consequently created at the company's Tokyo headquarters around 1998. Enix remained without a translation department until its merger with Square in 2003. In recent years, the process of localization has undergone changes, mainly due to difficult experiences with various titles. Most major titles are now developed with localization running in parallel to development, with more simultaneous releases and even occasional titles developed in localized form first in order to appeal to the Western market.
Dragon Quest, titled Dragon Warrior when initially localized to North America, is the first role-playing video game (RPG) in the Dragon Quest media franchise. It was developed by Chunsoft for the Family Computer and published by Enix in Japan in 1986 as Dragon Quest and by Nintendo in 1989 in North America for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Dragon Quest has been ported and remade for several video game platforms, including the MSX, PC-9801, Super Famicom, Game Boy Color, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4, and mobile phones. Players control a hero character who is charged with saving the Kingdom of Alefgard and rescuing its princess from the evil Dragonlord. Dragon Warrior's story became the second part in a trilogy. Several more anime and manga series, which revolve around this overarching plot were created.
Final Fantasy is a fantasy role-playing video game developed and published by Square in 1987. It is the first game in Square's Final Fantasy series, created by Hironobu Sakaguchi. Originally released for the NES, Final Fantasy was remade for several video game consoles and is frequently packaged with Final Fantasy II in video game collections. The story follows four youths called the Light Warriors, who each carry one of their world's four elemental orbs which have been darkened by the four Elemental Fiends. Together, they quest to defeat these evil forces, restore light to the orbs, and save their world.
Final Fantasy VII is a 1997 role-playing video game developed by Square for the PlayStation console. It is the seventh main installment in the Final Fantasy series. Published in Japan by Square, it was released in other regions by Sony Computer Entertainment and became the first in the main series to see a PAL release. The game's story follows Cloud Strife, a mercenary who joins an eco-terrorist organization to stop a world-controlling megacorporation from using the planet's life essence as an energy source. Events send Cloud and his allies in pursuit of Sephiroth, a superhuman intent on destroying their planet. During the journey, Cloud builds close friendships with his party members, including Aerith Gainsborough, who holds the secret to saving their world.
The localization staff at Square Enix works mainly from Japanese to English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, as well as Russian, Korean and Mandarin for a number of titles. In 2016, Final Fantasy XV became the first major title from the company to release in Latin American Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese.Minor titles are occasionally localized from English to European languages. Prior to the merger of Square and Enix in 2003, Enix did not initially have a localization department and outsourced its Western releases to translators who had no close contact with the original development teams, as was the case for Dragon Quest VII . Square also did not initially have a localization department, though a number of localizers such as Kaoru Moriyama and Ted Woolsey worked with them regularly on a contractual basis in the early 1990s. Moriyama described the work at the time as leaving very little leeway for polishing text due to the limitations of the ROM sizes. She also commented Hironobu Sakaguchi was not willing to put extra work for the English version at that time. Following the massive international success of Final Fantasy VII , however, the company looked into improving the quality of its translated products-the game was widely criticized for its rushed English translation, which had been handled entirely by Michael Baskett, the company's only in-house translator at the time. To that end, Square tasked Richard Honeywood, originally a programmer, with creating a dedicated localization team in the Tokyo headquarters. His first major project was Xenogears . While there were only two members at first, including Honeywood, the staff grew to include more than 40 employees by 2007, and over 70 in 2015. The success of Final Fantasy VII also led to the creation of a London-based European office in 1998, which would handle marketing and quality assurance for the PAL market.
Japanese is an East Asian language spoken by about 128 million people, primarily in Japan, where it is the national language. It is a member of the Japonic language family, and its relation to other languages, such as Korean, is debated. Japanese has been grouped with language families such as Ainu, Austroasiatic, and the now-discredited Altaic, but none of these proposals has gained widespread acceptance.
English is a West Germanic language that was first spoken in early medieval England and eventually became a global lingua franca. It is named after the Angles, one of the Germanic tribes that migrated to the area of Great Britain that later took their name, as England. Both names derive from Anglia, a peninsula in the Baltic Sea. The language is closely related to Frisian and Low Saxon, and its vocabulary has been significantly influenced by other Germanic languages, particularly Norse, and to a greater extent by Latin and French.
French is a Romance language of the Indo-European family. It descended from the Vulgar Latin of the Roman Empire, as did all Romance languages. French evolved from Gallo-Romance, the spoken Latin in Gaul, and more specifically in Northern Gaul. Its closest relatives are the other langues d'oïl—languages historically spoken in northern France and in southern Belgium, which French (Francien) has largely supplanted. French was also influenced by native Celtic languages of Northern Roman Gaul like Gallia Belgica and by the (Germanic) Frankish language of the post-Roman Frankish invaders. Today, owing to France's past overseas expansion, there are numerous French-based creole languages, most notably Haitian Creole. A French-speaking person or nation may be referred to as Francophone in both English and French.
Before a translation is greenlit and translators are allocated for each language, the localization, quality assurance (QA) and marketing staff play through a build of the game and sometimes do a focus group study. The localization team's playthrough can sometimes take over 100 hours of gameplay. Once the company greenlights a localization project, a period of brainstorming starts in which glossary, style, naming schemes and fonts are chosen. During the translation phase, voiced sections are translated first. Text files are cross-checked by multiple translators and editors. The text is then integrated along with any graphic and sound changes, and the game goes to quality assurance. During a period of several weeks to up to three months, Japanese QA teams look for bugs while Western QA teams check linguistic issues. The localization team often re-plays the game during this phase, translates the manuals and help out on the guidebooks if these are made. Finally, the game is sent to the hardware manufacturers to be approved.
A focus group is a small, but demographically diverse group of people and whose reactions are studied especially in market research or political analysis in guided or open discussions about a new product or something else to determine the reactions that can be expected from a larger population. It is a form of qualitative research consisting of interviews in which a group of people are asked about their perceptions, opinions, beliefs, and attitudes towards a product, service, concept, advertisement, idea, or packaging. Questions are asked in an interactive group setting where participants are free to talk with other group members. During this process, the researcher either takes notes or records the vital points he or she is getting from the group. Researchers should select members of the focus group carefully for effective and authoritative responses.
Challenges for the localization teams include space limitation (due to data storage and/or on-screen space), achieving a natural dialogue flow despite multiple plot branches and script lines being stored out of order, and, when voiced footage is not re-recorded for lip movement, dealing with file length and lip-synch limitations.When the same team works on different games in a series such as Final Fantasy, they often need to adopt different writing styles depending on the setting of their games. Another point to consider is humorous elements that do not translate properly into English, and different cultural expectations about character interactions. The localization process depends on factors such as the development teams' wishes, as well as budget and schedule. Traditionally, translation usually started late in development or after the original Japanese release, but recent titles have been translated during initial development, making the translators appear more like additional planners or consultants and not just translators—this was the case for Final Fantasy XI , Final Fantasy XIII , Final Fantasy XIV and Final Fantasy XV . A few titles, like The Bouncer , have actually been recorded in English first and then adapted to Japanese. The Last Remnant also adopted this approach, featuring motion-capture and dialogue synched to English rather than Japanese actors. This was done due to the company's wish to create a title for the international market.
Final Fantasy XI, also known as Final Fantasy XI Online, is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), developed and published by Square as part of the Final Fantasy series. Designed and produced by Hiromichi Tanaka, it was released in Japan on May 16, 2002, for PlayStation 2 and Microsoft Windows-based personal computers in November of that year. The game was the first MMORPG to offer cross-platform play between PlayStation 2 and personal computer. It was also the Xbox 360's first MMORPG. All versions of the game require a monthly subscription to play.
Final Fantasy XIII is a science fiction role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles and later for the Microsoft Windows operating system. Released in Japan in December 2009 and worldwide in March 2010, it is the thirteenth title in the mainline Final Fantasy series. The game includes fast-paced combat, a new system for the series for determining which abilities are developed for the characters called "Crystarium", and a customizable "Paradigm" system to control which abilities are used by the characters. Final Fantasy XIII includes elements from the previous games in the series, such as summoned monsters, chocobos, and airships.
Final Fantasy XIV is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed and published by Square Enix. Directed and produced by Naoki Yoshida, it was released worldwide for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 3 in August 2013, with clients for PlayStation 4 and macOS following later. The game, known as Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, is a replacement for the 2010 version of Final Fantasy XIV, which was shut down after negative reception at its launch. Final Fantasy XIV takes place in the fictional land of Eorzea, five years after the events of the original release. At the conclusion of the original game, the primal dragon Bahamut escapes from its lunar prison to initiate the Seventh Umbral Calamity, an apocalyptic event which destroys much of Eorzea. Through the gods' blessing, the player character escapes the devastation by time traveling five years into the future. As Eorzea recovers and rebuilds, the player must deal with the impending threat of invasion by the Garlean Empire from the north.
Many early localizations, like other RPGs both then and in more recent years, made heavy use of antiquated speech patterns and archaic nouns such as "thee" and "thou".Square was not greatly focused on their localizations before the worldwide commercial success of Final Fantasy VII. In later years, the original translators were joined by editors to catch grammar and spelling errors. Prior to the development of Final Fantasy XIII-2 , the standard localization process for a title involved dual development between the company's sound and localization departments, which meant that difficulties could arise because of constant changes to dialogue. Starting from XIII-2, in-house development tools, such as Moomle and Rosetta, have been developed to ensure all parts of the process were properly synchronized and centralized. In recent years, English language localization teams have tended to adopt two different approaches to translation and localization: either they remain quite faithful to the original Japanese, or they can make large changes as long as the story outline remains the same. The former method was adopted for Final Fantasy XIII and its sequels, although some alterations were made in order to make the English dialogue sound natural. In choosing voice actors, the company prefers to avoid well-known film and television actors, citing Ellen Page's casting in Beyond: Two Souls as a counterexample. Vagrant Story, generally recognized as a high-quality localization, made some significant changes in style: whereas the original Japanese text was rather straightforward, the English version made use of archaic Medieval and Old English words and dialogue. In contrast, European and Asian versions are generally known to be closer to the source text.
The word thou is a second-person singular pronoun in English. It is now largely archaic, having been replaced in most contexts by you. It is used in parts of Northern England and in Scots, and also in rural parts of Newfoundland, albeit as a recessive feature. Thou is the nominative form; the oblique/objective form is thee, the possessive is thy (adjective) or thine and the reflexive is thyself. When thou is the grammatical subject of a finite verb in the indicative mood, the verb form typically ends in -(e)st, but in some cases just -t, although in some dialects of Old English, this verb form ended in -s, hence the Quaker habit of using what looks like the third person form of the verb with "thee" as the subject.
Final Fantasy XIII-2 is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Released in 2011 in Japan and 2012 in North America and PAL regions, it is a direct sequel to the 2009 role-playing game Final Fantasy XIII and is part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries. A port to Microsoft Windows was released on Steam in December 2014 followed by iOS and Android in September 2015. XIII-2 includes modified features from the previous game, including fast-paced combat and a customizable "Paradigm" system to control which abilities are used by the characters, and adds a new system that allows monsters to be captured and used in battle. It features a heavy time travel element, allowing the player to jump between different times at the same location or different places at the same time. Lightning, the protagonist of the original game, has disappeared into an unknown world. Her younger sister Serah Farron, a returning character, and a young man named Noel Kreiss, journey through time in an attempt to find Lightning.
Ellen Grace Philpotts-Page is a Canadian actress and producer. Her career began with roles in television shows such as Pit Pony, Trailer Park Boys and ReGenesis. She starred in the 2005 drama Hard Candy, for which she won the Austin Film Critics Association's Award for Best Actress. Her breakthrough role was the titular character in Jason Reitman's film Juno (2007), for which she received nominations for an Academy Award, a BAFTA, a Golden Globe and a Screen Actors Guild Award for Best Actress and won the Independent Spirit Award, an MTV Movie Award and a Teen Choice Award.
Honeywood described Xenogears , his first translation project at Square and the first to be handled internally by the company, as "pure hell". 's localization, handled by Phil Bright and Tom Slattery, was also quite chaotic. According to Slattery, the lack of deadlines, poor communication and synchronization between the various departments, and continuing changes to the script and to cutscenes led to a turbulent development. Due to the script changes, large sections of dialogue needed to be re-translated and re-recorded by the English actors due to lack of necessary emotional drive for the scenes. In contrast, Alexander O Smith, who is often associated with the Ivalice games, had a good working relationship with Yasumi Matsuno during the localization of titles like Vagrant Story , Final Fantasy XII and the 2010 re-release of Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together . The two worked closely to ensure that the English versions were faithful to Matsuno's vision. A challenging localization was Final Fantasy X , the first Final Fantasy title to feature voice acting. There, the team faced problems in both making the dialogue more compatible with an English-speaking audience and lip-synching it roughly with in-game characters, whose lip-movement was still for the original Japanese dialogue. The European releases of the same games did not feature localized voices but instead included the English voices. This trend lasted until Final Fantasy XIV , the first game to feature German, French, Chinese and Korean voices.He stated that he started to change the company's approach to localization after that game, moving booths to always work very closely with the original development teams, improving communication with them, and introducing full-time editors. Woolsey, an English translator in the SNES era, also had a troublesome time while localizing Secret of Mana , which he said "nearly killed [him]". The translation was completed within a month of the Japanese release as Square wanted to catch the 1993 holiday season. Final Fantasy XIII
When translating its game titles, Square Enix tries to take into account the cultural differences between Japan and the target territories. This sometimes involves rewriting dialogue or altering graphics, animations, and sounds. For instance, in Chocobo Racing , visual references to the Japanese folk heroes Momotarō and Kiji were changed to depict Hansel and Gretel, since the game was designed mainly for children, and Hansel and Gretel are better known in the West than Momotarō and Kiji.According to Honeywood, trying to explain to the original development teams why some changes are needed can range from "frustrating to downright hilarious". Generally, older development teams trust the translators with making changes while newer teams can be more reluctant, though they usually build up trust gradually. The localization team for The World Ends with You chose to preserve the Japanese elements to ensure the game's cultural aspect remained intact. While localizing Final Fantasy XII , translators Smith and Reeder worked to preserve the original script's meaning while using English dialects to reproduce the Japanese dialects found in the original version to identify factions within the game.
Final Fantasy VII's script was done by a small team, resulting in a rough script and inconsistencies. One of the more famous of these was the name of Aerith Gainsborough: the name was originally meant to be a merging of "Air" and "Earth", but her name in the original English release was spelled "Aeris". Similar space issues frequently motivated character renames in older games, such as Chrono Trigger 's Crono and Final Fantasy IX 's Amarant, originally named Salamander. During his localization of Secret of Mana in 1993, Woolsey was forced to trim down vast amounts of character dialogue due to an awkward fixed text font, later stating that he was satisfied with the final result. With ports and remakes of older games, dialogue can be changed or added by the team, as in the case of Final Fantasy VI. The title can also be altered for various reasons. Final Fantasy IV and VI were released in North America as Final Fantasy II and III. This was due to the fact that the original II and III on NES had not received a Western release. The Final Fantasy Legend was originally to be called The Great Warrior Saga, but changed it to its current title to tie in with the Final Fantasy series, which was well-known and popular in North America. The prequel to Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu, was similarly renamed Final Fantasy Adventure in its North American release, only to be later renamed again to Mystic Quest in Europe, in an attempt to tie it with the unrelated Final Fantasy Mystic Quest . Dragon Quest , one of the earliest successful Japanese role-playing games, had its title changed to Dragon Warrior so as not to confuse it with the similarly-titled tabletop role-playing game DragonQuest . The DragonQuest title was discontinued in 1987, and Square Enix registered the Dragon Quest trademark for their use in 2003. Also due to copyright issues, The World Ends with You could not be released under its original Japanese title It's a Wonderful World.
Gameplay may be altered when it is felt that a game might be too easy or difficult for the Western audience. 's gameplay also received notable cuts for its North American release. On the other hand, Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings was made more difficult in localized versions because the Western market was judged "more familiar" with the real-time strategy genre than the Japanese market. For the Western release of Dissidia Final Fantasy , the game was changed to suit Western players, including removing several RPG elements to make it more akin to an action game. Censorship can also affect the localized versions of the games and require obscuring mature themes, rewriting risqué remarks or phrases, altering graphics or removing parts of some scenes. This was common in the NES and SNES eras but less drastic later on once video game content rating systems were established. Original Western releases of early games in the Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest featured multiple occurrences of this form of censorship. Final Fantasy VIII also received some censorship for its European release, including the removal of a Nazi-like uniform. Less commonly, this also goes the other way, for instance with Final Fantasy XII , in which a sequence involving violence against a female character was censored in the Japanese version but restored in the American and European releases. References to religion can also be removed, as in Final Fantasy IV and VI. Such references in Xenogears caused Square to consider not releasing it in North America.Some of the older Final Fantasy titles, such as Final Fantasy IV, were altered to be more easy to play in the West than in Japan, though their remakes and ports have generally restored the difficulty. Einhänder
In 2008, Square Enix expressed willingness to make worldwide "simultaneous releases the norm".Concerning Final Fantasy XI , at the time of the original English-only European release in 2004, producer Hiromichi Tanaka had stated that while Japanese/North American/Australian simultaneous releases are possible due to translating only Japanese to English, it was not possible for European countries due to the difficulty of finding good Japanese-to-European-languages translators, and the fact that second-hand translations from the English would be akin to "Chinese whispers". However, the team later integrated full-fledged French and German localization teams, achieving simultaneous release from the Japanese for three different languages from 2007 on. Another example of synchronized localization is Final Fantasy XIII: the company started the localization process in several languages alongside the game's development to lessen the delay between the local and international releases. For self-contained series or games linked by story events or similar elements, Square Enix makes an effort to use the same localization teams, as in the case of Ivalice titles or Kingdom Hearts.
Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn was localized in-house by Square Enix under supervision by Naoki Yoshida. Dedicated teams were formed for each language, with Koji Fox leading the English version. Compared to its predecessor, which featured English-only voice-overs even in the Japanese release, A Realm Reborn featured English, Japanese, German and French voice-overs, with all languages released in simultaneous fashion similar to Final Fantasy XI. The game featured voice work in a low number of cutscenes: this was explained by the fact that the team did not want new voice recording to dominate the creation of new content after the initial release.The team later added Korean and Chinese languages to the game, albeit released in a different schedule as service is separate. The Western release of Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII was delayed by over two months because of the large amount of dialogue, which changes due to the game's time mechanic, that needed to be translated and recorded.
The viability of a game's platform can also affect both the localization and the release, as in the case of the PlayStation Portable-exclusive Final Fantasy Type-0 , which would eventually come West as a high definition port for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One,and Seiken Densetsu 3 , which was not localized due to undefined technical problems. The company has also recently started releasing Japanese voice tracks as downloadable content, as in the case of Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII and one of the titles it has published, the Access Games-developed Drakengard 3 . Another aspect of Square Enix's policy concerning the Western release of games was to make games that appealed to both Western and Japanese audiences, but the worldwide success of the Japan-aimed Bravely Default caused them to rethink their strategy. Although English was originally the main language of Square Enix's foreign releases, including in non-English speaking countries, it seems some titles may debut without an English release in the future, such as the Chinese version of Dragon Quest X before an North American or European release has been confirmed. Final Fantasy XV , on the other hand, was the first Final Fantasy game to feature nine languages in a simultaneous launch.
The localized versions sometimes expand on the original games. For example, when Honeywood found contradictions in the story of Chrono Cross in 2000, he worked with Masato Kato, the director and scenario writer of the game, to rewrite sections and add explanatory dialogue which was not in the original version. For Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King , voice-overs and orchestral music were recorded for the Western releases in 2005, while the original Japanese version did not have them.Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions also featured voice acting that was not included in the original Japanese release in 2007. Generally, gameplay content left out of the original game due to time constraints may be completed and added in the localized versions. Sometimes, the expanded localized versions of games from series like Kingdom Hearts and Final Fantasy are re-released in Japan. The re-releases are usually based on a direct port of the North American releases, with English dialogue replacing the original Japanese audio, the Japanese text acting as subtitles. They can also include features and tweaks previously only available in the Western version alongside other additions, such as adding Japanese voice acting to the 3DS version of Dragon Quest VIII.
1UP.com's Wesley Fenlon praised Square Enix for the high quality of its translations, especially as space allocated for text and dialogue had been expanded with new and re-released versions of games.Jeremy Parish, writing for the same site, said that the quality of Square Enix's English localizations had "gone from laughable [...] to some of the best around." Both praise and criticism has been given to individual games for the quality of their localizations. Xenogears, the company's first game to feature voice acting, drew criticism in regard to its audio presentation, while The Bouncer received a fairly positive response. Final Fantasy X received praise, although poor lip-synching and some aspects of the actors' performances were criticized. The choice of changing a major line from "Thank you" to "I love you" also received mixed reactions. The English release of X-2 ended up receiving the Seventh Annual Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences award in 2004 for Outstanding Achievement in Character Performance. Final Fantasy XII and Vagrant Story were both highly praised for the qualities of their localizations. During the development of Final Fantasy XV , director Hajime Tabata directly responded to feedback on the English localization of the game.
Final Fantasy IV, known as Final Fantasy II for its initial North American release, is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Released in 1991, it is the fourth main installment of the Final Fantasy series. The game's story follows Cecil, a dark knight, as he tries to prevent the sorcerer Golbez from seizing powerful crystals and destroying the world. He is joined on this quest by a frequently changing group of allies. Final Fantasy IV introduced innovations that became staples of the Final Fantasy series and role-playing games in general. Its "Active Time Battle" system was used in five subsequent Final Fantasy games, and unlike prior games in the series, IV gave each character their own unchangeable character class.
In video gaming, a fan translation is an unofficial translation of a video game made by fans.
Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past is a Japanese role-playing video game developed by Heartbeat and ArtePiazza, and published by Enix for the PlayStation in 2000. It was released in North America in 2001 under the title Dragon Warrior VII. The game received a remake on the Nintendo 3DS on February 7, 2013 in Japan, which was released in North America and Europe for the Nintendo 3DS under the title Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past in 2016. A version of the game for Android and iOS was also released in Japan on September 17, 2015.
Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen, titled Dragon Warrior IV when initially localized to North America, is a role-playing video game, the fourth installment of the Dragon Quest video game series developed by Chunsoft and published by Enix, and the first of the Zenithian Trilogy. It was originally released for the Famicom on 11 February 1990 in Japan. A North American NES version followed in October 1992, and would be the last Dragon Quest game localized and published by Enix's Enix America Corporation subsidiary prior to its closure in November 1995, as well as the last Dragon Quest game to be localized into English prior to the localization of Dragon Warrior Monsters in December 1999. The game was remade by Heartbeat for the PlayStation, which eventually was available as an Ultimate Hits title. This was followed with a second remake developed by ArtePiazza for the Nintendo DS, released in Japan on 22 November 2007. This remake was released in Australia on 11 September 2008, in Europe on 12 September 2008 and in North America on September 16, 2008. A version based on the Nintendo DS remake for Android and iOS was released in 2014.
Dragon Quest III: The Seeds of Salvation, titled Dragon Warrior III when initially localized to North America, is a role-playing video game developed by Chunsoft and published by Enix. It is the third installment in the Dragon Quest series and was first released for the Family Computer (Famicom) in Japan and later for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in North America. The game saw an enhanced remake for the Super Famicom in 1996 and the Game Boy Color in 2001, and a port to mobile phones and the Wii in 2009 and 2011. A version of the game for Android and iOS was released in Japan on September 25, 2014, and worldwide as Dragon Quest III: The Seeds of Salvation on December 4, 2014. It was the first time the game was given an official English subtitle.
Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King, known in the PAL regions as Dragon Quest: The Journey of the Cursed King, is a role-playing video game developed by Level-5 and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 2. It was first released in Japan in 2004, and was later released in North America in 2005 and PAL regions in 2006, making it the first main series installment released in the PAL region. It is the eighth installment of the popular Dragon Quest series and it is the first English version of a Dragon Quest game to drop the Dragon Warrior title. A version of the game for Android and iOS was released in Japan in December 2013, and worldwide in May 2014.
Alexander O. Smith is a professional English–Japanese translator and author. While his output covers many areas such as adaptation of Japanese novels, manga, song lyrics, anime scripts, and various academic works, he is best known for his software localizations of Japanese video games including Vagrant Story, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, and Final Fantasy XII. He currently resides in Kamakura, Japan, where he operates his own contract localization business, Kajiya Productions, and is co-founder of a translation and publishing company, Bento Books.
Ted Woolsey is an American video game translator and producer. He had the primary role in the North American production and localization of Square's role-playing video games released for the Super NES between 1991 and 1996.
Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions is a tactical role-playing game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation Portable (PSP), the game is an updated version of Final Fantasy Tactics made for the PlayStation which was released in 1997.
Shinji Hashimoto is a Japanese game producer at Square Enix. He currently serves as the Final Fantasy series Brand Manager, as an Executive Officer at Square Enix and the Head of Square Enix's Business Division 3. He is also the co-creator of the Kingdom Hearts series. He served as corporate executive of the company's 1st Production Department during its entire existence.
Final Fantasy XIII - a role-playing game released by Square Enix in 2009 - revolves around the struggles of a group of humans over a predestined fate. The game's two sequels, Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, build on the first game's story and mythos. In video game publications and among the staff at Square Enix, the three games have come to be referred to as the "Lightning Saga", and the core concepts they contain are drawn from the mythos of the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries. The visuals of the original characters were designed by Tetsuya Nomura and Nao Ikeda, while many later characters were created by other designers, including Hideo Minaba, Yusuke Naora and Toshiyuki Itahana. Their original stories were created by Motomu Toriyama and written up by Daisuke Watanabe.
Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is an action role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. It was released in November 2013 for Japan and February 2014 for North America, Australia and Europe. A port to Microsoft Windows through Steam was released in December 2015 followed by iOS and Android in Japan during February 2016. The game is a direct sequel to Final Fantasy XIII-2, concludes the storyline of Final Fantasy XIII, and forms part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries. Lightning Returns employs a highly revamped version of the gameplay system from the previous two games, with an action-oriented battle system, the ability to customize the player character's outfits, and a time limit the player must extend by completing story missions and side quests.
Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is an action role-playing game developed by Square Enix and HexaDrive, and published by Square Enix for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and later for Microsoft Windows via Steam. It was released worldwide in March 2015, while the Steam port was released in August 2015. Type-0 HD is a high-definition remaster of the Japan-exclusive PlayStation Portable game Final Fantasy Type-0, a spin-off from the main Final Fantasy series and part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries, a set of games sharing a common mythos. The story focuses on Class Zero, a group of fourteen students from the Dominion of Rubrum who must fight the neighboring Militesi Empire when they launch an assault on the other Crystal States of Orience. In doing so, the group become entangled in both the efforts to push back and defeat the forces of Militesi, and the secret behind the war and the existence of the crystals.
Richard Mark Honeywood is a video game localization director and professional English/Japanese translator. He grew up in Australia, moving to Japan after graduating with degrees in computer science and Japanese from the University of Sydney. Honeywood initially worked for several Japanese video game developers as a programmer, but moved into localization after joining Square in 1997. He is credited with founding the localization department at the company which has been praised for its high quality translations. During his tenure at Square, Honeywood expanded the team from Japanese to English translation to a partner of the development team, creating localized text and graphics for multiple languages and ensuring that the video game code supported multiple languages easily. In 2007, Honeywood left Square Enix for Blizzard Entertainment, where he served as the global localization manager for World of Warcraft until November 2010. He then moved to be the translation director for Level-5.
Noctis Lucis Caelum, "Noct" for short, is a fictional character from Square Enix's Final Fantasy series. He is a playable character and main protagonist of Final Fantasy XV, originally a spin-off titled Final Fantasy Versus XIII. The crown prince and protector of Lucis, Noctis and his allies must defend their country when the empire of Niflheim attacks Lucis in an attempt to take control of its magical Crystal. Alongside Final Fantasy XV, Noctis has appeared in the game's expanded media, including Final Fantasy crossover titles, and other game titles including Puzzle & Dragons and the fighting game Tekken 7.
War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is a tactical role-playing game co-developed by Square Enix and Gumi Inc. and published by Square Enix for iOS and Android devices, set to be released in 2019. It is a spin-off of Final Fantasy Brave Exvius that draws inspiration from the Final Fantasy Tactics series of games.