[Featurama] Nyu-Media Interview
Tomorrow sees the release of Nyu-Media’s localized project Cherry Tree High Comedy Club.We got together with the people responsible for bringing this and many other doujin games stateside to ask them a few questions about their upcoming releases as well as a few words on the market for such titles.
I’m Seon King, founder of Nyu Media. That might sound grand and aloof, but on a day-to day basis I do or support every aspect of the business.
To expose and contribute to the development of the doujin game scene on a global level. In practical terms, that means we enable overseas gamers to enjoy some really great doujin games that they may otherwise never have heard of. We count on these gamers to support the developers by purchasing the games and then the devs can make more and even better games!
In 2007, I was working for Capcom in Japan and one of my colleagues took me to a Tora No Ana (a doujin specialist chain). They had doujin games lined up on the shelves that looked really professionally done and a lot of fun to play. I was really impressed by the combination of the grassroots production and quality of the work. At that point I knew that I wanted to get involved in helping build doujin games. It took a few more years to make the move, but last year I took the plunge & formed Nyu Media.
I’d say primary factors were that game publishers didn’t see doujin games as commercially viable, plus there was the overall decline in paying demand for Japanese contents overseas. On the dev side, most of the doujin devs didn’t consider it would even be possible to have their games sold outside of Japan.
In terms of the opening of the market, Rockin’ Android made significant in-roads, but Carpe Fulgur’s success with Recettear really made people sit up and take notice.
We look for games that stand-out in their genre and we’ll have fun localizing. For example, Satazius is hella-fun, the eXceed series are great games with genre-leading production values, Cherry Tree High Comedy Club has outstanding visuals and a great take on the adventure genre, Ether Vapor Remaster and Fairy Bloom Freesia are just awesome specimens of the 3D shooter and beat ‘em up genres!
We plan to maintain diversity in the genres represented our line-up, but there will be trends within that. For example, RPGs are beyond our resources right now and we’ll always have a soft spot for shmups.
I certainly hope so! Creatively and technically, Edelweiss are among the best around and it’s an honor and a pleasure to work with them. Anyone who isn’t aware of them is in for a treat when Ether Vapor Remaster and Fairy Bloom Freesia hit the spotlight.
Another Nyu Media staff member and I previously worked at Capcom. Once the initial Nyu Media line-up was prepared, I pitched Capcom on the idea of working together to publish them and we were fortunate enough that they accepted.
Having worked, we had the advantage of knowing who to contact, but otherwise we had to pitch and make a strong case, like anyone else would.
The issue in compiling the eXceed Collection was that the source code for the first game (eXceed Gun Bullet Children) was not available to be localized. To be able to include all three games in the collection, we decided to localize the two latest games and include the original Japanese version of Gun Bullet Children as an ‘import’.
Initially, we were going to translate the eXceed Gun Bullet Children script ourselves and make it available on the eXceed website. Later we decided this would be a great opportunity to get the community involved and produce the translation as a service by the fans and for the fans. We put the idea out there in the Shmups Forum and Iwakura Productions offered to take it on. They did a fantastic job and VERY fast!
Despite the fact that it’s available in many different forms, Steam is an important market in PC gaming. When can we expect the steam release of the eXceed Collection?
Great question. Capcom is arranging the Steam release, but it has hit unavoidable delays. We don’t have any visibility as to when the release date will fix, but we’re confident that Capcom will pull it out of the hat soon. In the meantime, we’re pacing the waiting room just like everyone else.
Very early in the planning process, we decided to follow what is widely regarded as ‘best in class’ localization – the Phoenix Wright / Ace Attorney series. Moreover, we were fortunate enough to be able to bring on Tezuka Productions – who worked on the Phoenix Wright games – to work on the translation.
Some people have stated that they would have preferred a straight translation. As a Japanese speaker and fan of J-pop culture myself, I understand where their coming from, but we took the view that the game would be better served with an accessible, as opposed to strict, localization. An FAQ about the translation is available at: http://cherrytreehigh.com/translation
Nyu Media’s product releases are queued up in serial fashion at Capcom. CTHCC was delayed as a result of delays that happened to the earlier eXceed releases. Now eXceed is out of the door, CTHCC is next up. The Edelweiss titles will follow soon after.
It’s a big responsibility when you have a piece of source language that doesn’t work and just has to be substituted. It takes creativity and respect for the original material to come up with something appropriate. We worked hard to respect and adapt the tone and mood of the original dialogue and the jokes.
A lot of work went into Cherry Tree High Comedy Club and we hope you enjoy it! Please support the game and the developer 773 by avoiding dodgy ‘warez’ (distributing DRM-free games is not “733t”, it’s pathetic) and get your copy through an official distributor!
Finally, we love support & positive feedback at Nyu Media! Please come join us on Facebook (facebook.com/NyuMediaLtd), Twitter (@nyumedia) or our website forums (www.nyu-media.com)!