To those who prefer Japanese voices...

loa

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Jan 28, 2012
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Why is "dual voice" even that rare of a feature nowadays?
Look at steam. 2 clicks and one download, bam, language switched.
We can't have that on consoles why again?

And I prefer to be able to watch instead of reading unless the english (or german) dub is utter garbage.
 

Ignatz_Zwakh

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Sep 3, 2010
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For me they're a few different factors though usually it boils down to the quality of the voice-acting. For instance, today my brother bought Soul Cali V. After playing for about 15-20 minutes, I went and swapped the voices for the Japanese audio. Por que? Because the English voice acting was UNBEARABLE!!!

However, I've yet to play an Atlus licensed game where I lamented the lack of the original audio. They've got some fine voice-actors under their wing, or at least hire good ones.

And then they're games like Vanquish. My brother played through half of it in Japanese whereas I left it dubbed. Though I would argue that the Japanese actors might have been of higher quality, it just didn't work for something like Vanquish. The instant you replace the over-the-top B-movie quality American voices with the dead serious Japanese ones, the game loses a lot of appeal for me. It just isn't as fun.

Now, when it comes to movies/anime, I always take the original language. It's just how it should be, considering that's how it was intended and whatnot. Whereas one could argue that for games, I somehow find it less applicable....though I'm unsure specifically as to why it doesn't bother me, or make me feel like I'm betraying the art form. Quelle mystere!
 

Dandark

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Sep 2, 2011
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Some people just want the original Japanese voices, whenever I play Blazblue online, most people I fight seem to have japanese voices turned on.
 
Sep 24, 2008
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I think this is a good question, and it's something I have to deal with a lot because my friends are lazy.

I prefer Japanese (read: whatever the language of the subject matter originated from) when I play my fighting games because of the different cultures.

Sounds weird?

Ok, before Japan got a foothold in American Culture in the mid 80's and made it's biggest impression with the influx of fighting games, how many cartoons had the heroes calling out their attacks? Probably a few, but definitely not that many as the Japanese culture would have. Because it's a Japanese thing.

It's weird and foreign to me to hear someone constantly yelling something in english while they are fighting because they just don't do that in this culture. I turn on the Japanese VO in fighting games because it makes sense to me that it's not apart of my culture, and the verbal/Social mores connection of my American Upbringing won't spaz out.

Keeping with Japanese as the OP asked for that specifically, there are so many differences in the Japanese culture and indeed their very language that you'll never have a word for word translation. In fact, there are a lot of words they use for just sentence structure that we English speakers don't have any context over. Language is a powerful thing. It will determine how you think. And it will definitely determine how you express yourself.

Now, while I can't understand the words... I can understand the power of words. Though tones.

The magical thing about Subs is that when you're reading a book, if you missed a word or you skimmed over a paragraph, a person saying something can seem out of place. If you just missed a sarcastic descriptor, you might be wondering why a person is saying that thing. If you hear the anger in a Japanese voice, and you read the closest translation, you'll get a deeper connection to what you're supposed to be feeling. That's huge for a non native speaker.

I went to see Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon in the theater, and save for long tree jumping, I felt the weight that the main character's carried by how they spoke. I saw the dub and everything seemed so flat. Chinese Mannerisms with English tones don't mix.

Long Story Short, I get the some of the impact I missed by not being a native speaker if I read what the words I'm hearing mean, while listening to the intensity of how the words were conveyed.
 

Vykrel

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Feb 26, 2009
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i have another question, for the MANY of you who prefer japanese rather than english dubs...

do you guys understand Japanese? i mean, the biggest complaint about english dubs that ive heard is that the acting is poor. how do you know the Japanese acting isnt crappy too? is it just the inflection and tone of their words that seems better?

i know everyone has their preferences, but i just dont understand the logic behind this one. if an anime/game has crappy english voice actors, i usually avoid it. but if i didnt, i dont think changing the language would be more preferable.
 

Byere

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Jan 8, 2009
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In all honesty, I prefer it when it's English-dubbed... but that's mostly because I find Japanese voices to be annoyingly high-pitched and always seem to turn a sentence into a question... also, I'm too lazy to try and play AND read subtitles :p
 

MetalMagpie

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Jun 13, 2011
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No opinion on games, but I vastly prefer subtitled Japanese/Chinese films to dubs, as the English voices are often in some sort of really forced accent and (for live action in particular) look really weird plastered over the original mouth movements.

And I read fast, so I don't have a problem with subtitles in general.
 

Buffoon

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Sep 21, 2008
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I love, love, love Final Fantasy, but I will admit the dialogue can be cheesy as hell. But it's a special sort of Japanese cheese, sincere and innocent and, to my mind, charming. Hearing that with an American accent just doesn't work. In fact hearing it in any way that is intelligible is doing it a disservice, as only my own brain truly knows how to please me. Which makes sense, really.
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

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Aug 22, 2010
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Strain42 said:
This is a legitimate question. I'm not trying to mock anyone's opinion. I'm looking for a serious answer.

I play a lot of Atlus games, and one of the things I hear most often is something along the lines of "I wish Atlus would include a dual audio option. I want the original Japanese voices."

Now let me ask something. What exactly does that mean? Does it just mean the first voices recorded? To explain further, let me use two Atlus games as an example. Devil Survivor: Overclocked and Catherine.

Devil Survivor: Overclocked is a very rare case (the first for Atlus, I believe) of a game that came out in the states first. Granted, only by a couple days, but the game was released in English first. Do you prefer the English voices because they would be the original voices, or would you still prefer Japanese voices because these are all Japanese characters and it would be more realistic?

On the exact opposite side of the coin, we have Catherine. Catherine was released in Japan first and so the Japanese recordings were first and would be considered the original. But these are all American characters who realistically would be speaking English.

Or do neither of those points really matter at all and some people just automatically want Japanese voices because they think they sound better (I've noticed even acting considered pretty bad in a foreign language is still often praised by English audiences)

Thoughts? (from anyone, not just people who prefer Japanese acting)
Sometimes, the Japanese voices just click better. In Bleach, I can't stand the English dub voices for Rukia and Ichigo cos they just grate me the wrong way. The English dub for Teknoman, Cowboy Bebop, Ninja Scroll and Evangelion on the other hand have always been preferred for me because they are good.

Also they may be some subtle cultural things at work. The way Japanese characters seem to do things like boast, admit love, tell a joke and other stuff always seems to be slightly different to the way an American or an Australian might. The way the characters hold themselves and even bdoy language comes across as different and hearing an English speaker yell out (in a case of bad dubbing) "I'LL NEVER FORGIVE YOU" is odd since in all likelyhood they'd be yelling "YOU COCK SUCKING BASTARD" is fucking surreal.

Its really down to talent and effort and while stellar examples exist on both sides, there are some people who must have, must have whored their way into the job because they're so fucking awful.
 

Charli

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Nov 23, 2008
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The dub has to be pretty horrendous for me to switch it to Japanese.

More often I'll just take the dub in stride and let myself appreciate any good work.
 

Aethren

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Jun 6, 2009
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I prefer games, shows and movies to feature the original voice-actors used when creating said game, show or movie, no matter the country. Call me a purist if you will, but dubs in any language are not as good as subs with the original voices.

When I eat foreign foods, I eat them with the utensils used in that country as well.
 

z121231211

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Jun 24, 2008
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I've never played games in Japanese with subs, but it's always good to have an option, especially considering we have these 50gb discs and it wouldn't be all that much work to put it in.

I watch a ton of anime in Japanese with subs, but mostly because of bad English dubbing or otherwise no English dubbing is available.
 

Polite Sage

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Feb 22, 2011
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I always prefer the original language, no matter if it's Japanese, Russian, Finnish, English etc. I just think the original voice actors (regardless of their language or nationality) are usually better, as the developers themselves hand picked these people to represent the characters in their game/movie/show.

Dubbing on other hand is done by seperate companies that might or might not have skillful voice actors on board so you get very varied quality with dubs. But f.ex. MGS has great voice actors regardless of language since both English and Japanese VAs were chosen by Kojima himself.

It might also be a cultural thing. In Finland only children's movies are dubbed and they tend to air both dubbed and subbed versions in television/movie theaters. Also: severe childhood trauma
 

Rpground

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Aug 9, 2009
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english duds are usually cring worthy. i just want what sounds better too me. if i dont like the japanese voices,rarely happens but it has and dear lord RUN FAR AWAY,ill listen too the english dub. but in truth i think the biggest problem is when the english voice acters try way too damned hard to be japanese...the gruff burly man voice (look too gears of war 3 main char) saying "uwah" in a terrible mutation of gruffy cute its just...wrong and unsettling. its just who and what you get for voice acters really. who ever does the better job i go with.
 

Zack Alklazaris

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Oct 6, 2011
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Dubbed voices always seem to end up failing miserably. The bad english, the acting is flat, and generally the voices don't match the characters. I want original voices of the game/movie/tv show. Every time, regardless of region.
 

Daggedawg

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Dec 8, 2010
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I prefer Japanese voices mostly because it gives me some practice (listening comprehension and what-have-you), and also because yes, Japanese voice work tends to have overall higher quality than American (because face it, it is America we're talking about here).

That said, there are a many Japanese games with English voice work that is really good. The Persona series were not too bad, except for a few annoying character voices here and there, and
many of the Tales games are also really good.

In the end, I believe it mostly comes down to personal taste.

On a related note, I do prefer the text being in Japanese if possible. There are often a lot of little touches and nuances that the translation simply can not cover, or could have, but missed the opportunity to do it.
 

Casual Shinji

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Jul 18, 2009
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boag said:
Crono1973 said:
I don't understand it! Unless you speak Japanese how would you know if the Japanese audio track is superior and how could it be if you can't understand it, may as well turn it off completely. So why don't people ask for a option to turn the voice acting off completely instead of a "foreign language I don't understand" option? I guess it's cool at the moment, fads often don't make sense though.
Usually its because by not understanding the words directly, the corniness of the dialog virtually disappears, while the emotion of the actor remains.
Bingo!

Japanese dialogue tends to be way different from American/English, and hearing it translated into english only increases the schlockiness.

Unless ofcourse the entire dialogue is put into a blender like with Samurai Pizza Cats; Then it can kick ass!