Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Home Gaming The coded gay jargon in Dragon Quest Builders 2

The coded gay jargon in Dragon Quest Builders 2

Good localisation is a treat. It’s an art. And few games do it better than the Dragon Quest series. When they make the jump from Japanese to English, the mainline Dragon Quest RPGs always get the royal treatment and Dragon Quest 11: Echoes of an Elusive Age is no exception. In fact, Shai Matheson’s performance as the flamboyant circus trickster Sylvando could well be my favourite piece of video game voice work ever. Dragon Quest 11’s script is also a princely masterpiece. But judged solely on the translation, and despite a much smaller budget, the peculiar, Minecraft-esque spin-off game Dragon Quest Builders 2 might just steal the crown.

The English translation in Builders 2 is sublime. It’s a non-stop barrage of flawless puns, knockout one-liners and perfectly pitched pop culture references. It’s also a song to British linguistic diversity. The game is split into several acts. Each has its own island sandbox to play around in, its own story, and its own cast of characters who, in true Dragon Quest style, speak their own UK dialects. There’s very little voice acting and, as dialects are tricky to recognise when they’re written down, meeting a new character becomes a game of ‘guess the accent’.

‘Oo are ‘ee, anyway? And what’re ‘ee doing all the way out ‘ere?’…

Read more

Good localisation is a treat. It’s an art. And few games do it better than the Dragon Quest series. When they make the jump from Japanese to English, the mainline Dragon Quest RPGs always get the royal treatment and Dragon Quest 11: Echoes of an Elusive Age is no exception. In fact, Shai Matheson’s performance as the flamboyant circus trickster Sylvando could well be my favourite piece of video game voice work ever. Dragon Quest 11’s script is also a princely masterpiece. But judged solely on the translation, and despite a much smaller budget, the peculiar, Minecraft-esque spin-off game Dragon Quest Builders 2 might just steal the crown.

The English translation in Builders 2 is sublime. It’s a non-stop barrage of flawless puns, knockout one-liners and perfectly pitched pop culture references. It’s also a song to British linguistic diversity. The game is split into several acts. Each has its own island sandbox to play around in, its own story, and its own cast of characters who, in true Dragon Quest style, speak their own UK dialects. There’s very little voice acting and, as dialects are tricky to recognise when they’re written down, meeting a new character becomes a game of ‘guess the accent’.

‘Oo are ‘ee, anyway? And what’re ‘ee doing all the way out ‘ere?’…

Read more

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