A long while back, a reader by the name of Justin asked about something in the official Breath of Fire II localization:
Early in Breath of Fire II, there’s a location called Mt. Fubi. The game is quirky and at times pretty funny, but a really stilted translation can make that hard to appreciate. It sounds like someone just took Mount Fuji and changed a letter. Is that what it was called in the Japanese version? If so, is there some play on words I’m missing?
Ah, Breath of Fire II, how I love you so. Its translation is so bad it’s good, and I can’t wait to take a look at it in full sometime! For now, though, let’s just take a look at this one question 😛
Okay, so the issue is Mt. Fubi at the beginning of the game, after the prologue. It’s pretty simple stuff, here are some screenshots for reference:
So it looks like “Mt. Fubi” in the English version was actually “Mt. Futabi” in the Japanese version!
In Japanese, this “futabi” could possibly mean “two tails”, but it’s been a long, long time since I’ve played the game, so I can’t remember if this name has any connection with anything. I get the feeling it’s just some random name with no significance, though.
Since the English localization shortens names all the time, everywhere, it’s not surprising that “Futabi” became “Fubi”. I don’t think it was meant to have any connection to Mt. Fuji at all, though.
Hopefully that solves that mystery, but if anyone has any insight to add, please share it in the comments!
Breath of Fire II is way, way up near the top of my must-do analyses, although I think it might be worth it if I do the first game first, to demonstrate the difference in quality between the two localizations, particularly given that the first English game was published by Square and the second was published by Capcom. And that good ol’ Ted Woolsey and friends were involved in the first game’s release. But that’s a way down the road, so we’ll see – maybe I’ll just jump straight to the second game anyway 😛
UPDATE: Oh boy, I just found a Japanese blog where a guy was playing the English version of Breath of Fire II to help with his English studies. That isn’t gonna end well 😯