A group of Yakuza fans are slowly working their way through translating some of the games that never made it to the west.
John “AugmentedSmoke” recently sat down with Digital Trends to talk about the work he and his team, Team K4L, have done on translating some of the Yakuza PSP games. Two Yakuza games were released for the PSP, Black Panther: Like A Dragon New Chapter and Black Panther 2: Like A Dragon Ashura Chapter. In more recent years, the series has found success with its highly regarded localisations. But currently, there’s no guarantee that any of the spinoffs will see a western release.
Localisation is not an easy task, and the translation for the second Black Panther took the team a while. The project “started in February 2021 and just had its release recently on January 7, 2022,” said AugmentedSmoke. “Usually, projects like this take a lot longer, but we’ve been lucky in that the talent and effort of our team has really sped up our progress.”
Even though the project didn’t take as long as they thought, the team did face some issues. “There are quite a lot of technical issues that you go through when trying to translate a game like this. I would almost describe it as having the game trying to work against you at some points.
“It’s definitely not as easy as just inserting the English text into the files and calling it a day. You have to take into account the art assets, technical limitations, and then all the difficult parts of translating Japanese into English, as some things just do not make sense in a direct translation.”
The team plans to take on a complete translation for the first Black Panther game next and apparently have more ideas beyond that. There are other titles, such as Ryū ga Gotoku Kenzan, a Yakuza game set during Japan’s Edo period, in 1605, that was never released in the west.
In other news, a new trailer for Pokémon Legends: Arceus finally showed off some uninterrupted gameplay, detailing how missions work in the game and how fighting Pokémon will work.