Japanese Konami titles translated in English

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By ghost_jp

Master (133)

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30-05-2018, 09:04

Oh I seem to have done easy mistake! Crazy
Thank you for your pointing out. Wink

By Manuel

Ascended (15763)

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30-05-2018, 11:33

What about: "Dracula's Demonic Castle"?

By gdx

Prophet (3047)

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30-05-2018, 12:25

For me, 悪 means Bad and 魔 means Demon. 悪魔 is bad demon. We can probably write 良魔 or 優魔 to say the opposite. When we add の behind 悪魔, it can become like an adjective "demonic" and therefore interpreted as "terrible" in some cases.

By ren

Paragon (1225)

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30-05-2018, 14:25

悪魔城ドラキュラ Akumajō Dorakyura

Quote:

What about: "Dracula's Demonic Castle"?

Note that on the back of the EU game box, the text is preceded by the heading "Dracula's Satanic Castle".

Isn't that a correct/valid translation of the JP title (actually)?

Devil's Castle Dracula (which you commonly see on the web) doesn't feel right to me either Wink

By ghost_jp

Master (133)

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30-05-2018, 15:19

I'm sure everyone knows tradition of Japanimation naming theory. For example, 機動戦士ガンダム means Mobile-suit Gundam. The term 機動戦士 explains what is ガンダム. I mean ガンダム = 機動戦士. We can generalize as follows. In the case of such a name contains kanji + pseudo English written in katakana, kanji part explains what kind of thing is the proper name by katakana.

Well, let think about our case, 悪魔城ドラキュラ. It is clear that the term 悪魔城 does quite not explain what is ドラキュラ. Actually this naming gave strange impression even to Japanese people in those days. I mean Konami intentionally deviated from the ordinary naming theory when they gave this name to the masterpiece.

Imagine the reason why they did such a deviation. In my opinion, they seem to have wanted to express what is the selling point of the game, by the erratic way. Dracula is exactly the anti-hero in the story. Well, what did 悪魔城 mean? It expressed where we had to seek for and fight against him. As you know, this castle is not just a large map but a complex trap house, which stood out among the other video games in those days. The castle should be called the second anti-hero of the game.

For the reasons stated above, I made a conclusion as follows. The word 悪魔 in this title didn't mean what we call "devil" or "daemon". But it meant the castle as the stage of the game is "demonic", "terrifying just like devil" or something else. A very dangerous mountain to climb is often called "魔の山" among Japanese people. I think this game title comes from the similar nuance.

By dr.slump

Rookie (19)

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30-05-2018, 16:45

As said previously, 悪魔城 (Akumajou) is a neologism - 悪魔 is used to modify 城, not as a possessive. So yes, "Dracula's Satanic Castle" is a perfectly good translation. "Devil's Castle" is a lazy and inaccurate translation. "Castlevania" is a great translation Wink

With 魔城 (Majou), there is quite likely no demon involved at all. I work as a translator as well and I see people reflex-translating 魔 to "Demon's" a lot - "Magical" is probably a safer bet! As ghost_jp was trying to say, though, "castle of terror" probably gets the nuance across better.

ぽんぽこパン - Ponpoko Pan (not ponpon)
This game features tanuki, and "ponpoko" (as in the Ghibli movie) is the noise they make when drumming on their stomachs. "Pan" means bread but is also a drumming noise as well so it fits nicely.

わんぱくアスレチック - Wanpaku Athletics
I would say the closest English to wanpaku is "little rascal". Dennis the Menace is Wanpaku Dennis in Japanese, for example.
Again, "mischievous/naughty" is the standard lazy translation. Wanpaku is usually associated with young boys who are full of energy - a little too much for their own good, and so they end up getting up to mischief.

edit - Just realized the OP was looking for actual translations of the titles! Personally I would just leave them transliterated, as most can't be translated literally into English, except for possibly:
夢大陸アドベンチャー -> Dream Continent Adventure
コナミの占いセンセーション -> Konami's Fortune-Telling Sensation

As a side note, I'm pretty sure 悪魔城 is the name of the castle itself in Japanese ("Castlevania" in English). So literally Demonic Castle is accurate, but it makes more sense for it to have a proper name, which is why Castlevania is a good translation.

By wyrdwad

Paladin (788)

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30-05-2018, 16:57

See, I've always kind of taken a little umbrage with the name "Castlevania," because while it does set the right mood, it's... a little odd. It's a portmanteau of "castle" and "Transylvania," which would be a little like if people started calling the Tower of London "Towndon." Wink It doesn't follow any naming schemes that people actually use when naming castles, whereas in a lot of ways, the "lazy" translation of "Devil's Castle" actually sounds like something the locals might call it. "Ye'd best stay away from there, f'r that's where th' devil dwells! Ye enter, and ye're goin' straight t' Hell!"

I don't really see the locals calling it "Castlevania," however. "Yes, this place is Transylvania, as you know. And that's Transylvania Castle over there. But that name's so long, we locals just abbreviate it as 'Castlevania' to save precious seconds when speaking to one another!" Wink

-Tom

By ghost_jp

Master (133)

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30-05-2018, 17:15

wyrdwad wrote:

if people started calling the Tower of London "Towndon." Wink

LOL!

By dr.slump

Rookie (19)

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30-05-2018, 17:25

wyrdwad wrote:

See, I've always kind of taken a little umbrage with the name "Castlevania," because while it does set the right mood, it's... a little odd. It's a portmanteau of "castle" and "Transylvania," which would be a little like if people started calling the Tower of London "Towndon." Wink It doesn't follow any naming schemes that people actually use when naming castles, whereas in a lot of ways, the "lazy" translation of "Devil's Castle" actually sounds like something the locals might call it. "Ye'd best stay away from there, f'r that's where th' devil dwells! Ye enter, and ye're goin' straight t' Hell!"

I don't really see the locals calling it "Castlevania," however. "Yes, this place is Transylvania, as you know. And that's Transylvania Castle over there. But that name's so long, we locals just abbreviate it as 'Castlevania' to save precious seconds when speaking to one another!" Wink

-Tom

Haha. Well, it's a pretty low-brow name, but it works. In the context of the game it definitely needed a proper name.
And I think the locals would be more likely to call it "Vampire's Castle" than "Devil's Castle"... Wink

By Randam

Paladin (916)

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30-05-2018, 23:40

Castlevania is a perfect name from a marketing/ branding point of view, even though I prefer the Japanese title.

I don't remember the castle in the game being referred to as Castlevania in any of the games I played (but I haven't played everything in the franchise). AFAIK it is referred to as castle or Castle Dracula (in English), the latter being also the name of the castle in Bram Stoker's book. The character Dracula in the novel was rumored to get his powers from the devil. Also Count Vlad II got the nickname Dracul (meaning dragon or devil). Dracula refers to Count Vlad III nicknamed Dracula (son of the dragon/ devil IIIRC). So for me the demon/ devil reference to the castle makes sense. Any of the previous suggestions/ notions to me have valid points depending on the point you are looking from.

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