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Farethere City Translation Notes
You can't become aware.
(Major spoilers; don't read until at least reaching the true endings!)
The original name of the city, Minoniyoku, is a rearrangement of "yomi no kuni," land of the dead. Before the reveal in the true endings, a message in the Blue Forest gives a bit of a hint to this: ミノニヨクは◆◆ノ◆◆, which implies that it might be an anagram and tells you where one of the characters goes. Farethere is of course an anagram of "hereafter," and can also be read as "fare well there" (or "farewell there"), "farther" (since it is the "other side"), etcetera.
Hopopo is probably so named because "popo" is an omatopoeia for bird cooing.
Thynon Bath was ナンジノユ (Nanji no Yu), a pun on nanji meaning both "what time" (which is technically used in 何時でも, "anytime," though not with that reading) and being an archaic word for "you." The original description made these two readings obvious. I couldn't really think of how to fit both, so it's just "thine own bath."
Heave-Ho Hospital was どっこいしょ病院 (Dokkoisho Byouin), which is a pretty straight translation (as far as translating "grunts" goes), but it's nice and alliterative. Plus, you know, it's great having "heave" in the name of your hospital.
Docta was simply センセー (Sensee, doctor), and Helpa was ジョシュ (Joshu, helper/assistant). It's written in katakana, and you could arguably read it as "Josh," but I don't think it's very intentional.
Jamiga is described as "onee," using language associated with gay men (see Garry from Ib). His profile confirms him as male by calling him an "onii-san," so there's no real question of that.
Crumble Bakery was 総崩れベーカリー (Soukuzure Bakery); it kind of just means "going under," but I picked a punny word for it. The description on the sign talking about their bread crumbling to pieces does lend itself to that.
Garuru going "Gahaha!" is probably a joke on how ガルル and ガハハ are visually similar. His name might also be intended to seem like a growl (i.e. "grrr")...? I don't know if that really fits him, so maybe not. At any rate, no other romanization really seemed right.
While Gemini does make note of her other self and being "two in one" in her intro, she really does seem to just talk like one person for basically the whole rest of the game. While that kind of thing can often be sidestepped in Japanese, she says "watashi wa" and all, confirming she's effectively speaking as one person and not really acknowledging her other self (separately, at least - but would she really say "we are Gemini" in her intro and then switch?). Seeing as she's become aware, I'd think she should be a normal human with only one body, with a special explanation for looking like two sometimes - like a secret mirror in her stand or something.
Hiro called Jekyll "aniki," which he probably means in a yakuza sense more than an actual sibling sense, even if Jekyll obviously doesn't consider himself like that. Still, I don't know if it's too contrary to Hiro's nature to actually want to be considered Jekyll's younger brother.
"Karakoro" is an onomatopoeia for "clopping around" or something, which his bio mentions he does a lot, but I didn't have any good names to use for that, and it just felt like one of those names I shouldn't alter, even if it is based on a word. I went with "bumble" when he says it himself.
The Mushroads were きのこねくしょん (Kinokonekushon), a portmanteau of "mushroom" and "connection." That's why the signs on the paths said "making connection..." (こねくしょん中…)
The characters on top of the Mushroad mushrooms... mean nothing, according to Segawa, and were put there just because. Um??? So that's why I didn't change them. The red one (Deepsea City) is "mi," the blue one (Grove Club) is "ka," the yellow one (Scraperton) is "hi," and the black one (Omen Capital) is "shi." These don't match up to their destinations, or numbers, or compass directions, or method of death, or anything. Though maybe the "shi" is meaningful on some level, since it means "death."
Michibiki means "guidance." Temaneki means "beckoning." Izanai means "invitation." Satori and Mitori mean "enlightenment" and "perception" (kind of), and could be going for a "left and right" thing, since "sa" can stand for "left" and "mi" can stand for "right."
The knife and fork icon on food was originally 【食】, short for "food," but I couldn't fit anything meaningful in English (and didn't care to just use [F]), so I made an icon instead.
Hopopo and Sellyu both have lines where they say 後生だから, which in context means something like "for goodness sake," but 後生 also means (and literally reads as) "afterlife." So it's probably an unconscious pun on their parts (since they don't know, obviously).
The eye graffiti saying "me" is seemingly a pun, as "me" means "eye," yet the back room graffiti on Day 6 says "you," showing that "me" can also be read in the English way. (So it's funny that Segawa used it as their "logo" in the credits of END ROLL. "Yep, that's me!") This also makes it likely that the lines in the haunted back room about "I vanished, the eye vanished too" are also intentionally playing on this, though it didn't look that way in the Japanese (especially since it used "medama," eyeball, instead of "me").
Selerin, Selter, and Sellyu were ウリリン (Uririn), ウリター (Uritaa), and ウルオ (Uruo). Selerin's name is the only one that seems connected to the patient they represent (Rin Hasegawa; incidentally, based on "kun"s and "chan"s, Rin is presumably a girl and the other two boys), so I made sure to keep that in there.
Karakoro's line about "veggie fortunes" is partially a joke about how うらない (uranai) can be read as both "fortune-telling" or "don't sell," since like he says, he doesn't do the selling, the paintings do.
The names for the upgraded Mushroom Cards were literally just "きのこカード two" and "きのこカード three." Along similar lines, Gilbert used English on occasion, but "Je T'aime" implied French was the natural fit. I saw a Japanese fan looking forward to English players going "why does he use English when his library's name is French?!", but I don't think they considered that if I just translated it straight as English, nothing would even look amiss... Like, he's not obligated to greet people in French, this isn't bad fanfiction.
Fishsy was ウーオ (Uuo), just a play on "uo" for fish. His nickname for you was "Minoniyo-kun." Mermech was マーメロボ, Maamerobo (or "Mermai-robo"). She simply talked in all katakana but with kanji, and my idea when doing her dialogue was that she keeps putting emphasis on the wrong syllables. Maddock is probably a play on "mad doctor." I still don't really get what his speech style is going for.
Grove Club was 樹海クラブ (Jukai Club). Jukai means "sea of trees," but there's a sea of trees in Japan so infamous that just Jukai can imply it: Aokigahara, a forest where many people commit suicide. So the "club" is for people who hung themselves, maybe even in that specific place.
Chairwom'n was カイチョオ (Kaichoo), a minor variation on "kaichou," chairperson.
Eater Island was イートアイランド, which is really Eat Island (and it even says that in English in one of the site's gallery images), but there was no way I was passing up that pun. Bu-ter and Eh-gg were just those words with a dot awkwardly breaking them up.
Hoover was ゴマサン (Goma-san), in reference to a famous manga about a seal named Goma-chan. Probably not so widely-known elsewhere, so I changed it to a famous (?) seal in the English-speaking world.
"Umi" means sea, which is why it's called the Umi-Basho. Similarly, "yama" means mountain, thus the Yama-Basho in END ROLL.
The Omens were 凶 (kyou), bad luck, and the "X" masks they wear over their faces actually represent that kanji. Also, it's arguably a punny name, since if you read it as Japanese, "o-men" means "mask." (The "o-men" mask shop in Nightmarket even sells "Omen" masks...)
Scraperton was ビル街 (Birumachi), simply "town of buildings" (but the word usually means office buildings or skyscrapers). Salareeds were サラリー (Salarii), just shortened from "salaryman." Officettes were オーエル (Ooeru, or really, OL), from the Japanese term "office lady."
Forgotnot was ワスレジ (Wasureji), basically "surely I shant forget."
The name of the Yoichi, 夜市, is actually identical to the name of their "Nightmarket." Kind of like the Funerales in END ROLL, but the way of handling it that felt right was different here. Similarly, Rinne (リンネ) is the cycle of rebirth being referred to by the Path of Rebirth.
The Path of Rebirth poems about each area were "waka," 31-syllable poems. Sticking to any particular limit in English would have been kind of pointless and really difficult.
"What kai-n I do for yo?" was "nanka youkai?" So yeah, more elegant, but it's still a bad joke. The Yokai spoke with a Kansai dialect, with the recurring question and response ("How's the biz?" "Eh, it's a livin!!") being a typical Kansai greeting: もうかりまっか (moukari makka) and ぼちぼちでんな (bochibochi denna). As we all know, Pigula the 7-year-old is not only very eloquent when talking about food, but a master of all Japanese dialects.
The song that plays in some of the dreams is Tooryanse, a children's song about safely crossing the street ("tooryanse" basically meaning "you can cross now"). So... yeah. The "to celebrate the 7th birthday" line is also a reference to the lyrics, and some of the NPCs in Omen Capital quote them too. And lastly, the piles of pebbles are in reference to the folklore of the Sai no Kawara, a place where it's said the spirits of children who died prematurely must stack pebbles to escape limbo.
The "gardens" were called 箱庭 (literally "box gardens"), as in actual miniature gardens you can buy, similar to a doll house or diorama. It seems pretty common in Japanese media to use the term for basically self-contained worlds like the ones here.
Snowmates were スノーサン (Snow-san). Because of the one explaining that they aren't all male, I briefly considered "Snowmx.", but that didn't really make sense.
Corrow was カーラース (Kaaraasu), an extension of karasu, crow. For reasons ranging from age to personality to hints toward his cause of death, I'm pretty sure he's not Dogma, alas.
Posted October 13th, 2016