Translated character names

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#1 by rampaa
2019-12-02 at 05:53
Some characters, such as Death Princess Mammon, Dragon Princess Belphegor, Insect Princess Beelzebul, Sea Princess Levi Ann, Princess Dytill, Princess Meringue... have their "name" translated, instead of a strict romanization. Is this in-accordance with VNDB's guidelines?

I personally think translating should not be allowed. But it seems pretty common and I can't find anything in FAQ that addresses this issue. Hence the thread.
#2 by ramaladni
2019-12-02 at 06:08
What's the problem if that's the intended effect?


The others seem like fair takes on the names as well. They're in katakana, after all.
#3 by rampaa
2019-12-02 at 06:15
Since when 姫 is katakana? If the producer were to name, say, Death Princess Mammon as デス・プリンセス・マーモン, then Death Princess Mammon would obviously be correct but that is not the case.

Also here, a character name without any katakana: Princess Tetsuko
Note that 姫 is still being translated instead of being romanized, even though there's no katakana whatsoever.

Edit: A few more examples: link, linkLast modified on 2019-12-02 at 06:52
#4 by diabloryuzaki
2019-12-02 at 07:24
then just change it to hime. translated character name only happen in translated vn unless that translated character name is written in katakana since start
#5 by adamstan
2019-12-02 at 07:24
Also here, a character name without any katakana: Princess Tetsuko

I feel like in that case, 姫 is more of a title, than a part of an actual name. I mean, that girl's name isn't "Tetsukohime", but just "Tetsuko", who happens to be a princess. Or, looking at other instances of that character, the "princess version" of a Misaki Renka, who goes by nickname of Tetsuko. So because of that I think it is okay to use "Princess Tetsuko". But I'm fine either way.Last modified on 2019-12-02 at 07:27
#6 by rampaa
2019-12-02 at 07:30
#5 I do agree it's more of a title rather than a name. But in my opinion it should not be translated because of the same reason we don't translate VN titles (ie. the field is there for romanization, not for English translation)
#7 by adamstan
2019-12-02 at 08:32
Maybe, but I think that even if changing it to straight romanization, it would be good to keep those "translated" names as aliases, at least for those "princess something" characters. It carries important information about those characters, that would be lost in plainly romanized version (at least for people who don't know Japanese).Last modified on 2019-12-02 at 08:32
#8 by rampaa
2019-12-02 at 08:50
I don't personally mind them being kept in alias field. But VN titles also carry pretty valuable information about VNs yet their translations are strictly forbidden from VN alias field. Plus Princess trait is already a thing, so if they are indeed literal princesses, then the trait can be applied and no valuable information would be lost for anybody.Last modified on 2019-12-02 at 08:50
#9 by ramaladni
2019-12-02 at 09:31
#2 K, you didn't make that clear to begin with, so whatever.
#10 by beliar
2019-12-02 at 16:46
When it comes to character titles, it's not even allowed, but encouraged to translate them, especially when it comes to familial relationships.
So, for example, Arita Reiko's Mother is translated and not transliterated as "Arita Reiko no Haha".

Moreover, titles should rarely even be added in the main name field and usually are more suitable as aliases, unless they are somehow intrinsically linked to their name.

Looking at the OP's examples, I see nothing really objectionable to the translations used, though alias fields could include romanizations. Though if I had created these character entries I'm not sure if I wouldn't have simply named them Mammon, Belphegor, etc. and added the full titles to the alias field.
#11 by rampaa
2019-12-02 at 17:45
For what's it worth, AniDB does not translate character titles. Here are a few examples: link, link

I find using the romaji field for English translation both absurd and confusing but welp.
#12 by barfboy
2019-12-02 at 17:50
I would understand if someone were named Hime (like Awayuki Himeno ) but if the 'name' is actually just a title, I translate it.Last modified on 2019-12-02 at 17:50
#13 by lucumo
2019-12-05 at 13:44
Definitely agreeing with rampaa here, in case this isssue is still up for discussion.
#14 by ginseigou
2019-12-05 at 16:47
It's ridiculous to leave names untranslated in cases like this link , link , link . Does someone really think that romanization would transmit the intended meaning?Last modified on 2019-12-05 at 17:11
#15 by rampaa
2019-12-05 at 16:56
It's ridiculous to leave names untranslated in cases like these *insert all non-English VN titles here*. Does someone really think that romanization would transmit the intended meaning?
#16 by beliar
2019-12-05 at 17:02
"Mockery is not the product of a strong mind".

Play nice kids.
#17 by rampaa
2019-12-05 at 18:00
I will try to support my argument (i.e. names should not be translated) for the last time. Here I go:

1) "Romanization does not transmit the intended meaning" is a valid statement on itself but it is irrelevant to the topic at hand. Romaji field does not need to transmit the intended meaning more than the Title field needs to.

2) Translation is not exactly a science. There may be multiple ways of translating a thing. How will you enforce consistency? How should Roshutsu Megami-sama be translated? Exhibitionist Goddess? Flasher Goddess-sama? Exposure Kami-sama? How about Summer Prince? Who decided his name is Summer Prince? Why not Prince of Summer? Why not "Ruler of Summer"? Why not "Sovereign ​of Summer"? Why not "Master of Summer"? If I were to change his name to any of these things, who could argue back and what would their objective basis be for their objection?

In summary, preferring translation over romanization does not only create unnecessary double standards for romanization fields, it also makes it so that the field is up to people's subjective interpretations and preferences.
#18 by yorhel
2019-12-05 at 18:49
Moreover, titles should rarely even be added in the main name field and usually are more suitable as aliases, unless they are somehow intrinsically linked to their name.
Absolutely this.

As for what to do when the title really is part of the name, I'm inclined to go with romanization, as that's how the name/original fields are semantically set up. I've been mulling over swapping all name and title fields so that it's more clear, like this:

* Name (in whatever language it's supposed to be)
* Romanized version of the name (if necessary, for display purposes)

This is already how the name/title fields for all DB entries are being used (with the exception of release editions in the title, but those often tend to serve for disambiguation rather than as actual titles. That ought to be a separate field, now that I think about it...)
#19 by barfboy
2019-12-06 at 00:19
I don't mind dropping titles from name fields and only using them as aliases but if I may argue for keeping names translated when they're just titles, I think that would be much more swell. While most VNs are made in Japan we shouldn't limit the website only to those who know Japanese. Titles carry meaning and when a person's name is only given as a title such as Mayor or Disciplinary Robot I feel there would be confusion that these characters DO have names (Shichou and Shidou Robo in the above) when that is not at all the case, they simply don't recognize the word in Japanese.

Edit: Crap, case in point apparently. I notice Nakagawa Momo name has been switched again. Her name is most certainly not Nakagawa Momo. This is an alias given to her by Nakagawa Kengo who's name is also certainly not Nakagawa Kengo. Their names ARE TITLES. Boss is only ever referred by Underling as Boss while Underling is only ever referred by Boss as Underling. The names they have are fake, they are not married, they are not related, they're running from the police. I feel compelled to change them back again but don't remember how they're labeled in game because the fact that they are going by aliases forced to pretend to be married (this is a driver of their plot in fact) is lost when you substitute their titles for names. As evidenced by their page from the official site listing their names as ??? and ???
linkLast modified on 2019-12-06 at 00:29


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