Lesson 3 HW Review

Great job on the homework from last time, guys! おつかれさま! Your translations were great, and I hope you learned a little something from doing them. I’m going to go through the homework screenshot by screenshot and explain the Japanese in them.

This first one definitely had the most vocabulary, so it may have taken you a long time to do, even if there was very little grammar to speak of. I’m going to give you very literal translations here, but keep in mind that most good translators will bend words and substitute pseudo-synonyms whenever it will make a translation sound better/more natural.

みぎて: right hand (みぎ is “right” and て is “hand”)
ひだりて: left hand (ひだり is “left” and て is “hand”)
あたま: head
からだ: body
うで: arm(s)
あんこく: darkness
あんこくのつるぎ: sword of darkness
あんこくのたて: shield of darkness
あんこくのかぶと: helmet of darkness
あんこくのよろい: armor of darkness
あんこくのこて: forearm of darkness
みぎきき: right-handed
セシル: The name “Cecil”

Since “Dark Forearm” or “Forearm of Darkness” sounds a little unnatural, you could go with something else, like “gauntlet” or “vambrace.” I think the original English translation for the SNES went with “Shadow Gauntlet.” Kind of loose translation there with “shadow,” but oh well. The GBA translation of the game called them “Dark Gloves.”

バロン: Baron (katakana name)
まち: town; city

So that makes “Town of Baron.” Not too tough.

This one was pretty tough grammatically and in terms of translation word choice it wasn’t exactly a picnic, either. I’ll break it down for you in the way that seems the most sensible to me. It takes experience to know which possible translation for a word (especially a versatile word like しょ or かえる) is the best one to use, but with time you really get a feel for it.

ぼうけん: adventure
する: to do (very general and versatile verb)
せってい: settings
かえる: to change
しょ: book (this is an old/fantasy-type word for book; the modern and common word is ほん)
つくる: to create
うつす: to copy
けす: to erase, to delete

So I would probably translate these five lines as something like this:

Set Forth on Adventure
Change Settings
Create Adventure Book
Copy Adventure Book
Erase Adventure Book

Remember that を is a particle that always indicates that what comes before it is the direct object of the verb. And in these examples, the verb itself is coming right after を (although it doesn’t have to). So in the phrase ぼうけんをする, 「ぼうけん」 (”adventure”) is the direct object, because it comes before を. する (”to do”) is taking ぼうけん as its direct object. So literally translated it’s “to do adventure,” but する is more than just “to do;” it really means to actively engage in any sort of process. So in this case we might say “to set out on an adventure,” “to set forth on an adventure,” “to go on an adventure,” “to start an adventure,” or any number of other things. But that’s how you grammatically break down the clauses with を in them.

This “adventure book” (ぼうけんのしょ) is basically a classy way of saying “save file.” Dragon Quest V wasn’t officially translated until the DS remake was released in North America in 2009. However, the hacker translation group DeJap released a pretty decent translation of the game in 2000, and the screen you saw was translated as such:

So you see, you really have a lot of flexibility as to how you can translate things. So long as you get the right idea from the Japanese, you can then go on to write an English translation that conveys the right sense without being too literal or awkward.

No grammar here, just lots of words.

はなす: to talk
つよさ: strength
そうび: equipment
とびら: door
じゅもん: spells
どうぐ: tools, items
さくせん: strategy, tactics
しらべる: to examine
まつもと: Matsumoto (just some name I made up; “Matsumoto” is a last name btw)

DeJap translated the above text like so, in case you’re interested:

Anyway, great job on this work, and again, おつかれさまでした! I hope to do plenty more fun activities like this in the future. If you have any questions about this assignment, please leave them in the comments.

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