Minori Changes Tune: “Dirty Foreigners Buy Our Games!”

ef-cover

In a sudden and unexpected about face, visual novel publisher Minori has gone from blocking non-Japanese users from its site with accusations of piracy and patronising suggestions they come to Japan if they want to play them, to asking they buy them in a joint venture with MangaGamer.

Even more surprisingly, the translations will be provided by the same fan translation group Minori was previously at pains to stop

The joint venture between Minori and MangaGamers will see translation group No Name Losers provide their translation as a basis for officially sanctioned English releases of Minori’s titles.

Confirmed so far are ef-The First Tale, ef-The Latter Tale and Eden* – popular titles which in the case of the “ef” series have been adapted into anime.

MangaGamer claims these will be published uncensored in their “original, unedited form,” although as previously seen their interpretation of “original and unedited” has in at least one case involved removing all voicing from the title in question.

Minori itself was previously noted for banning non-Japanese from its site, blaming them for the short-lived talk of an eroge ban coming from some Japanese politicians:

minori-barbarian-version

It later clarified this, telling the barbarians it was their fault Japanese politicians were threatening a ban, and it was they and not the unsurprisingly spineless Japanese who had to fight the ban:

Now we will tell you the short detail about the reason why blocking you to this website, because of we, all Japanese EROGE makers were facing at the problem, the crisis of “Freedom of speech”.

Currently, The bill that allows to limiting the content (It is censorship. Isn’t it?) to all EROGEs is being discussed in the Diet because intellectuals and politicians said “Japanese EROGE were being problem and troubled with the foreign country. Therefore we should make EROGE hidden away from foreign country, and also its content should be limited and censored”.

Okay, now we trusted the word what they said at once. So we blocked you to make stay away from the trouble.

…Do you like that?

In later comments their CEO went on to rubbish the sale of eroge to foreigners, saying it was a tiny market and that they wanted to protect foreigners from potentially committing a crime by playing their games.

Subsequent developments saw them vandalise the website of No Name Losers, telling them they were a bunch of pirates, whilst telling foreign fans they should go to Japan if they wanted to play their games.

Now they display this cheery message as if nothing had happened:

minori_starts


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    249 Comments
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    Avatar of Lost
    Comment by Lost
    04:49 29/09/2010 # ! Good (+0.4)

    got to ask... why would i want to buy there games now after all the crap they called us?

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:45 07/04/2014 # ! Neutral (0)

    The point of a boycott is to get a company to change its practices. The reason isn't just that you stop buying their product, it's that you imply that you'll start buying it again once they make the changes you're demanding, in hopes that enough people will agree with you and force the company to change if it wants to remain profitable. Refusing to buy their things after they've already changed isn't supporting your cause, it's just being a dick.

    That said, the company's transformation is shady, at best. While I can't agree with someone refusing to buy their things because of what they said earlier before they changed, I completely understand wanting to be wary of them and making sure it's not just a PR stint before buying from them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:42 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Capitalism, ho!

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:56 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well, if you can't beat em, join em!

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:46 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sorry for you who lives in an overseas.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:03 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    You think they write the titles of Sankaku's articles or something?

    Minori had to cover their ass as a priority, they are a business; not a civil rights for international porn action group.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:21 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Don't get mad, get even.

    Avatar of starsplash
    Comment by starsplash
    15:07 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    haha pirate their games and sell it to make ur own profit... nice way to get even

    Comment by Anonymous

    Because we are better than they are. we see that there is no gain from their isolationist solution, both in our case and theirs.

    Think of it this way... when you buy their games its like saying "we forgive you minori, for your cowardly ways."

    Avatar of Lilith
    Comment by Lilith
    04:51 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    If you actually care about the crap they call you in order to play the games then you, my friend, are really sensitive.

    Square Soft could've called me a dumbass, dirty faggot and I'd still have played Chrono Trigger

    Avatar of Chen-04
    Comment by Chen-04
    05:35 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    He didn't say he won't get it he just mentioned that he won't pay for it. And I'm with him. Not gonna pay for anything from minori. Pirating however is a whole different thing. Not that I actually care for those visual novels.

    Avatar of Neferius
    Comment by Neferius
    07:38 21/12/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Makes sense to ME...

    The way I see it, Piracy can be used to either promote or boycott.
    What the fansubers were doing initially was to promote Minori's products by making them available to a non-Japanese market.
    True, those patches could either be used with an official Game, or a torrented .ISO, but people who could afford them would buy them to show their support ...which is also what most fansubbing groups encourage people to do anyway.

    But that was BEFORE studio Minori decided to blame the rest of the world for Japan's political mishaps.
    And when they finally realised that the rest of the world didn't care either-way, AND that they just alienated a seizable portion of their fanbase, they finally came to their senses it seems... not exactly a Happy-Ending, but a lesson to be learned in this for-sure.

    Avatar of Megidola
    Comment by Megidola
    07:43 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I doubt minori will be very concerned about people not buying these titles who didn't want them anyway.

    Comment by Anonymous

    So, because Minori got pissed due to piracy... You're going to pirate their games. Great logic, bro.

    Avatar of kyosak
    Comment by kyosak
    04:58 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Everyone pirate the shit out of this

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:01 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    sorry, but now all I can think of is this http://dagobah.net/flash/ambex_pirate.swf
    thanks alot :V

    Comment by Anonymous

    Why would one pirate the shit out of this when we, as foreigners, have won. Is this not exactly we wanted?

    Keep in mind what kind of social and fiscal sanctions you are promoting and keep in mind what kind of consequences those sanctions will promote.

    All negative sanctions at this point will accomplish is telling them their first stance was correct.

    Avatar of Chen-04
    Comment by Chen-04
    05:42 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    They should have done so in the first place. You reap what you sow. They lost me as a paying customer months ago and I stick to what I say. Even though this hadn't much of an impact back than, as I don't know japanese and thus wouln't have buyed anyway. But now things are different!

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:50 07/04/2014 # ! Neutral (0)

    Because companies are completely willing to change and make former fans happy again if they know said fans will never give them a cent, right? The point of boycotting a company isn't to stop giving them money, it's to tell them that if they want your money again, they need to change. Once the change is made, there's no reason to keep boycotting them; companies are run by people, after all, and people fuck up and make mistakes. I can understand not wanting to buy the game if it's low quality, or holding off for a while if you think they're just doing this as a PR stint, but sticking to a boycott for the sole reason of punishing past mistakes isn't making a stance, it's being a dick.

    Avatar of Chen-04
    Comment by Chen-04
    06:26 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's not about forgiving it's about paying.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:52 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Forgiving your enemies is a stance only losers and appeasers take.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:53 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm sure loss of revenue will annoy them that much more!

    Comment by Anonymous

    “Always forgive your enemies - nothing annoys them so much.”

    Avatar of kyosak
    Comment by kyosak
    05:35 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Trying way too hard bro

    We haven't won shit. Fan translations have always been about nonprofit and you are sitting back and admitting to supporting greedy companies exploiting what bullshit copyright claims they wave around at a nonprofit fan translation.

    I guess I should stop humming my favorite songs in front of others because the recording studios will be on my ass for my own interpretation of their fucking song huh?

    To add to that, they hired an amateur translation group. If any of the terrible VN English patches out there are an indication, this one will be no exception. I'm not paying money for some shit tier translation that would have otherwise been free.

    Then again, I guess beggars can't be choosers eh? Well thank god I'm not a beggar.

    Comment by Kudeh
    07:03 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    >To add to that, they hired an amateur translation group.
    ______

    Amateur translation groups are often better than the professional variety.

    Avatar of kyosak
    Comment by kyosak
    08:39 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I'm fairly sure that you've never compared the translated text to its original if you believe what you wrote.
    While I agree anime dialogue tends to be more simple than that in eroge, there's no denying most if not all eroge translation groups are not at the level to be reaping profits for their work.

    But hey, do what you want with your money. Like I care.
    One man's trash is another man's treasure indeed >.>

    Avatar of Megidola
    Comment by Megidola
    09:35 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Obviously the translations aren't going to be as good as the originals, but this doesn't mean they're terrible. In any case, you can hardly claim translations deserve to be free as they take time and effort to produce, that's the whole reason there are relatively few VNs with english patches. It's great when fans are willing to translate these things for free, but it's their generosity to do so, not anyone's right.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:09 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    From what I played of NNLs release of ef the quality of the fansub was definitely on the right side of ok, especially when considering the alternative is auto translating programs which spew out mumbled garbage half the time.

    Avatar of Megidola
    Comment by Megidola
    07:47 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The VNs I've played had pretty decent translations, especially considering the text can often be more complex than anime dialogue.

    Avatar of kyosak
    Comment by kyosak
    07:43 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The few VNs I've bothered to play in English have all had terrible translations.
    The same level of quality you see in a lot of fansubs for TV animation doesn't carry over to these games.

    If anyone is so desparate to play eroge, they are better off studying the language than paying for half assed translations that are slow as hell and deserve to be free in the first place.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:47 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    If they are selling physical prints, im buying.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:16 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    anime\manga\eroge gods PLEASE let this be the start of something good. The fan subbers & translators have always had good access and done great work, so work with them, start charging, and hopefully it will work out great for all. I for one would gladly buy what I enjoy, especially if done well. I stand buy this for manga as well. A good scanned, good translated chapter out for a little bit of $$? Fuck yeah. Me being me, I'd even still buy the collected volume because I like to collect the physical copy.

    Comment by Pyrus
    14:16 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Money talks, bullshit walks.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:51 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Dear Minori:

    As a "dirty foreigner" in response to your rather "bipolar" behavior, please heed these words..

    GO BANKRUPT!!

    What a bunch of phonies.

    Avatar of Myballz
    Comment by Myballz
    09:23 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sell it on Xbox 360!

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:56 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Says the guy with the sony avatar.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:34 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    "Our suffering is the rest of the world's fault."
    "The rest of the world are nothing but thieves and liars."
    "We will block ourselves off from the rest of the world."
    "Hey guys, we're totally coming your way! So, like, welcome us with open arms!"

    Assholes.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:17 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    FUCK EM' You wanna be JAPAN 'ONRY then dont' come around begging for my filthy Gaijin money

    Comment by Anonymous
    Avatar of hugh
    Comment by hugh
    10:47 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Oh the hypocrisy

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:00 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well, at least they have to apologize to the "Dirty Foreigner"

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:11 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The only one who called anyone a "dirty foreigner" was Sankaku itself.

    Avatar of zgriptsuroica
    Comment by zgriptsuroica
    11:04 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm still buying the games, even though they were assholes before. That is, of course, providing MG doesn't do their usual thing and rape people with prices.

    Avatar of charizardpal
    Comment by charizardpal
    10:05 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Eh their games suck anyway. I tried to get into Wind~ a breath of heart but its nothing compared to Key stuff. Although Key isnt blameless--they made their latest game only playable on Japanese systems too.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:16 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I don't give a shit about the prior conflict if I can finally play Ef, I think its a masterpiece. People should do all they can to support english visual novels. With all the f'ing nuts and loons we have running around now I do not blame them for their prior actions.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:45 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    This is true. The fact of the matter is that it was UNICEF and other foreign entities (including the U.S. government) that were trying to get Japan to pass the loli ban. This was in large part because, in the U.S., our government has been unable to enact a meaningful law against "virtual child porn," due to repeated court decisions which have struck such laws down as unconstitutional. The only major success they've had was in bullying Christopher Handley into copping a plea, and using that victory as a scare tactic. All even that really did, though, was warn people to find a way around U.S. Customs, and with digital content surpassing paper, Customs is becoming increasingly irrelevant anyway. As a result, the government has to mostly be content to try to stop the material in question at the source, and Japan is perceived as being a major source. So they try to get Japan to ban it instead.

    If you read minori's previous statements CAREFULLY (keeping in mind they are in broken English), I'm not sure it's fair to say that they were intending to insult the foreign fans, but only looking to protect their own interests. The thought seems to have been something like: "All the foreign entities really want is for the loli material to stop showing up in America, Europe, etc. If we give them what they want by restricting our products to a domestic, Japanese audience, they will go away and leave us alone."

    I'm glad that, now that cooler heads have prevailed in Japan, and a loli ban seems to no longer be an imminent danger, they now see an opportunity to make their games available in English.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:29 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sorry, already pirated them after they refused to take my money in the first place.

    Nice sentiment, if seemingly insincere, but really it's a little too late.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:13 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Now, now let us be rational! Let's boycott Minori. Not Japan.

    Avatar of Sinkross
    Comment by Sinkross
    11:38 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    haha, so tsundere ( ̄‿‿ ̄)

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:41 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    On the positive side, more and more Japanese translated games will be out... This is nothing but good news for everyone. Either you buy it or wait for the crack version. =D

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:29 29/09/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    All I have to say is, with the above images: tsundere much?

    "It's not like I WANT you to play my h-games...!"








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