Saturday, October 17, 2009
By: Matthew Doucette
Duality ZF, officially translated to 双攻 in Japanese,
which means "Double Attack".
Our bilingual logo, in English and Japanese.
It's a dual-language logo, further playing on our duality concept!
Learn Some Japanese:
双攻 translates back to English as "Double Attack". It is comprised of two words, 双 and 攻, which mean "twin" and "attack", respectively. The Japanese language often combines words to create new words with more elaborate meanings. It is a very interesting and philosophical language. I would love to learn more of it.
Here are some Google Translate links for your convenience:
http://translate.google.com/translate_t?tl=en#ja|en|%E5%8F%8C%E6%94%BB (双攻 to Double Attack)
http://translate.google.com/translate_t?tl=en#ja|en|%E5%8F%8C (双 to Twin)
http://translate.google.com/translate_t?tl=en#ja|en|%E6%94%BB (攻 to Attack)
For your information, Duality directly translated to 双対性, which also is made up of the word 双, which means "twin":
http://translate.google.com/translate_t?tl=en#en|ja|Duality (Duality to 双対性)
I will leave it up to you to see what various combinations and orderings of 双, 対, and 性 mean!
Where's the ZF?!
"ZF" fans may be wondering why the ZF disappeared in the Japanese translation. Since ZF is an English military abbreviation, that stands for "Zone of Fire" (details deep on our Duality ZF page), it did not translate well into Japanese. ZF translated literally would not be an abbreviation in Japanese. We would have to skip the abbreviation and translate "Zone of Fire" directly, which is now more than we wish to convey in our title. So we dropped it.
Correct me if I am wrong (see "I Stand Corrected" below), but as far as I have learned, it is cooler to have a shorter Japanese name than a long one. We already had two words, so we did not want anymore. A few shoot'em up games I researched had only two, as well. Ikaruga is 斑鳩 (Spot + Dove). Raiden is 雷電 (Lightning + Electric). So we were fine with 双攻 (Twin + Attack).
Another example I looked up, remembering the Japanese in the title screen, is one of my favorite Sega Genesis games, "The Revenge of Shinobi". In Japanese it is just 忍, which is Shinobi. To translate "The Revenge of Shinobi" fully would make 忍復讐 or longer. As you can see, just 忍 is cooler.
I Stand Corrected!
I just received the following email from a Japanese friend who wanted to clarify my misleading words above:
You wrote "Correct me if I am wrong".
>Ikaruga is 斑鳩 (Spot + Dove). Raiden is 雷電 (Lightning + Electric).
斑鳩 and 雷電 are proper nouns.
斑(madara) means 'spot' and 鳩(hato) means 'dove'. Those are right.
But, 斑鳩(ikaruga) means 'Japanese grosbeak", not '斑 and 鳩(spot and dove)'
雷電(raiden), the name of shoot'em-up derives from that of fighter aircraft.
So, in this case, '雷電(raiden)' is not '雷 and 電' or 'lightning and electric'.
Thank you, friend! I actually knew 雷電 (Raiden) was a proper noun, in of itself, and derived from the fighter aircraft mentioned in the email above, so it was misleading for me to break it down into 雷 and 電 (Lightning + Electric) as if that was the true origin.
Translate Duality ZF?
Are you interested in translating Duality ZF into your native language? Would you like to double check our Japanese translation? Please contact us.
Thanks to nal:
I would like to thank nal for working with us on a proper translation of Duality ZF into Japanese, and suggesting 双攻 (Double Attack) as the title.
- Duality ZF (official developer site)
- CBC News (TV, radio, website)
- Duality ZF Dream Build Play 2009 Top 20 Finalist (2nd in Canada, 7th in the world)
- Interviews (Xona Games, Duality ZF)
- Duality ZF Promo Materials
- Duality ZF (official game site)
- Duality ZF Forums (hosted on xbox.com)
- Xona Games (YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Vimeo)
- Dream Build Play (Microsoft's XNA Game Studio Contest)
- Xbox LIVE Indie Games* (xbox.com, Xbox Forums)
- Imphenzia Music (creator of the Duality ZF soundtrack)
*Xbox LIVE Indie Games formerly known as Xbox LIVE Community Games.
About the Author: I am Matthew Doucette of Xona Games, an award-winning indie game studio that I founded with my twin brother. We make intensified arcade-style retro games. Our business, our games, our technology, and we as competitive gamers have won prestigious awards and received worldwide press. Our business has won $180,000 in contests. Our games have ranked from #1 in Canada to #1 in Japan, have become #1 best sellers in multiple countries, have won game contests, and have held 3 of the top 5 rated spots in Japan of all Xbox LIVE indie games. Our game engines have been awarded for technical excellence. And we, the developers, have placed #1 in competitive gaming competitions -- relating to the games we make. Read about our story, our awards, our games, and view our blog.