Is the Blitzball Kid in Final Fantasy X Really This Dumb?


KingMike sent in a question about a line Final Fantasy X that I remember chuckling at back in the day:

A question about some kid in Final Fantasy X:

He reminds me of Ralph Wiggum. I was looking through my old picture files, and it seems I saved a screencap from Final Fantasy X.

From Kilika, the town where everyone lives in wood houses over the sea, right after Tidus sees Yuna do her first “Sending” dance. This kid sounds really strange so I took a pic. 😛 Fortunately since I was playing the International Version, it was no problem to switch the language to Japanese and take another shot.

The line in question is this:

If it's this easy to switch languages in FFX I'll have to add it to my list of games to take a look at before the Great War of 2093If it's this easy to switch languages in FFX I'll have to add it to my list of games to take a look at before the Great War of 2093

And here’s the text side-by-side for easy comparison:

Japanese Version (basic translation)English Version
When I grow up, I’m gonna be a blitzball!I’m gonna be a blitzball when I grow up!

Yep, the line’s the same in Japanese! This kid’s a little crazy in both languages!

You know, I barely remember Final Fantasy X-2 after all these years, but I think it’d be hilarious if this kid had a cameo in it as a blitzball 😛

UPDATE: After doing some quick checking, it looks like this line was updated for the recently released HD version of Final Fantasy X! I don’t know what the English line says, but the Japanese line has been changed to say “blitzball player” instead of just “blitzball”:

Aww he changed his dream

Given this info, it sounds like the original Japanese script writers made a mistake, and that mistake was carried over into the English release. But with this re-release they were able to finally fix the mistake. So I’m guessing the English re-release has a similar change in this line too – if anyone’s able to confirm this, let me know!

MUCH LATER UPDATE: Final Fantasy X HD is finally out in English, and it looks like the goofy line was left as-is! Hooray!

The dream lives on! Actually that phrase fits this game well, wow
If you liked this, check out This be book bad translation, video games!, my book dedicated to game translation disasters from the 1970s until today!
  1. Just to clarify, this isn’t something Japanese children might say when they talk about becoming an athlete? Like “野球になる” or “サッカーになる” or other such things?

    1. Nope, an actual blitzball – for extra reference here’s one of the big Japanese Final Fantasy wiki articles on the subject: link

      Apparently this was fixed in the Japanese HD version to say blitzball player, though.

      1. Even the Japanese comment on that, though:

        Even in our world, there’s quite a few kids who talk about their dreams by saying, “I want to become a soccer”.

        My guess is that it was mostly reasonable as written, considering that it’s a kid, and was only clarified in the remake due to the line’s reception by the Japanese fanbase.

      2. I always assumed that the kid was so hyperactive that he was expressing his need for movement as wanting to be a blitzball, and just kinda being corny about it.

  2. Lol, the question asker was right. The line does remind me of Ralph Wiggem. But then i’m a huge Simpsons nerd, and pretty much everything reminds me of some random quote from the show. 😀

    FFX is one of those games that i have, but just never got around to playing. I like the FF series, and played through the first nine games, but i’ve never gotten around to playing through X or XII, despite owning them (I also have no desire whatsoever to play XI or XIII). Despite not having played X yet, though, i already had most of the plot already spoiled for me thanks to this: Oh well.

    1. #TrollLink

      I’m still playing the game, I’ll not click it, thank you. Although I’ve had some major plot elements spoiled for me already… But honestly nothing I didn’t expect from what I’ve already seen, so there’s still hope! D:

      I’m expecting a “Snape kills Dumbledore” type of reply, so I’ll probably never come back to this page until I’ve finished the game…

      1. Thanks for the Harry Potter spoiler out of nowhere, bro. I hadn’t finished that yet!

        1. Gandalf eats Jorah Mormont on page 42 of Eclipse!

  3. It does seem like something a little kid would say, though. My brother wanted to be Pac-man at one point.

  4. supposedly the ORIGINAL Japanese version has it said correctly, but when translating the International version back into Japanese they kept the typo

    1. Where did you learn this rumor? Does it mean that the International version’s Japanese script is a recursive translation from Japanese to English and back to Japanese?

      If that’s true, why would Square Enix do that? Wouldn’t that cause a Chinese whispers effect (where the original message is distorted more and more as it is transferred to different people/regions)?

      1. The Japanese wiki link I posted in an earlier comment makes no mention of this being an International-only thing; it sounds like it was that way in all versions until the HD re-release.

    2. Don’t believe you at all. Sounds like you’re just trying to protect Japan’s reputation like it’s some perfect country that can do no wrong. They do make grammatical mistakes every now and again.

      1. Only typing what I heard, don’t be so mad bud.

        1. Typical “don’t be so mad” reply. I’m not mad. I was explaining it to you.

          1. Sounds like you were explaining something he didn’t imply to me…

            1. Mind your own damn business.

  5. I’m just disappointed they killed it for FFX HD. That was a classic line!

  6. Well that is quite amusing. I’d forgotten about this line (I don’t think FFX was my most memorable experience).

  7. That’s funny; I wonder if the original English translator gave it a second thought.

  8. Well, nobody can confirm if the English rerelease changes it yet since it doesn’t come out until March 18th. I’m half hoping it doesn’t though. ; )

  9. FudgemintGuardian

    I love that line! I hope they don’t fix it in the English re-release.

  10. Aw sad to hear they’re changing it. It’s such a space cadet kid thing to say!

  11. I thought it was a funny little cloud coocoolander line and I loved it. It was a nice crazy twist on a typical thing. I mean, ANYONE can be a player, but it takes real dedication to be the ball.

    I’m actually disappointed the line was changed. A little less “local flavor” now…

  12. It makes me happy that in the year 2014 there are still people doing their first play through of ffx. 😀

  13. Isn’t that a thing in sports anyway? Y’know, “be the ball”? Maybe this kid just took it literally without realizing it was just meant as a figure of speech, heh. I’d believe it.
    I at least admire the kid’s enthusiasm – even in the aftermath of an attack by Sin, he still wants to survive and grow up to be a part of the greatest game on Spira. Don’t ever let go of your dreams, kid! And don’t *ever* let anyone tell you that you can’t do it! Hah…

  14. I always thought of Kang’s line “When I was young, I wanted to be a baseball! But now I realize, we must move forward, not backwards, upwards, not forwards, and always twirling, twirling, twirling towards freedom!”

  15. Maybe I’m stretching, but this reminds me of something printed in one of the Mangajin books.

    Here’s what Mangajin was:

    In a manga panel, a grown man said: “boku wa eizu desu”, which literally means “I am AIDS.” However, they said it was best translated as “I have AIDS.” Is this another case of this odd method of expression?

    1. Good question! That extra usage/meaning of “desu” isn’t that unusual to come across, but if translated too literally (or if a translator isn’t experienced enough) you’ll definitely get weird results that’ll make readers laugh.

      In the case of the blitzball kid, he uses a different verb altogether, which doesn’t work quite the same way. So he’s definitely saying he wants to be an actual blitzball in Japanese.

      1. Cool, thanks for the reply. 🙂

  16. I FINALLY started playing this game a few days ago, after buying a copy at a flee market years ago. I just came across this kid while playing earlier tonight. As soon as i saw that line, i remembered this article.

  17. Just so you know, there IS a blitzball familiar/pet/fairy in Mobius Final Fantasy. It was a login bonus for the FFX collaboration event. I believe this kid managed to achieve his dream.

    1. Wasn’t the FFX event supposed to be canonical (or, compatible with canon) for the FFX “series”? I’d started it up, but never got far. Wonder how well it holds compared to the vocal drama from the HD Remasters…

  18. I can confirm that this error was present in the German version of FFX as well (don’t know about the HD version). Don’t remember the exact wording, but I know that the kid mentions wanting to become a Blitzball.

  19. What baffles me is that — even as recently as the PS3 release — the official soundtrack has several “Hymn of the Fayth” tracks with…subtitles, I guess, for the various subjects (temples, peoples, y’know), but the general, non-subbed track is, officially I’ll remind, “Hum of the Fayth”.

    From the in-game Sphere Theater, one can unlock FMVs and music tracks. There are a few bonus tracks to get, one of which is Tidus humming the Hymn — hence, “Hum of the Fayth”. However, there was no track for the neutral Hymn of the Fayth (that’s relegated to one of the FMVs), so I guess in the infinite botched wisdom of early-aughts cross-regional collaboration, all parties involved just took that bonus track’s title for the actual performance given on the original soundtrack. So, when I got my limited edition of the PS3 release, it was severely exasperating to see, right next to the original Japanese track listing (as the included soundtrack was not localized), “Hum of the Fayth”, a decade after the fact. This is perhaps more embarrassing than never updating the item “Soft” to something more indicative of the explicit gold needle animation that plays in-game, as at least that decision preserved parity with the older games, but this…it is easier to believe just no one has told them, or they just don’t pay it mind?