The wordy title tells you everything you need to know: It’s a puzzle game that plays sideways instead of vertically, which is pretty refreshing. You use various magical hammers to hit the blocks, and if you match up four blocks of the same color, you free the ghosts that were trapped inside. The title also lets you know that something may be amiss with the game’s translation.
It’s a pretty fun puzzle game with cutscenes sprinkled between levels in Story Mode. It’s clear tht these cutscenes were not translated by a native-level English speaker, which is the classic recipe for things like ”All your base are belong to us”.
Does Refreshing Sideways Puzzle Ghost Hammer rival Zero Wing’s legendary translation? Let’s find out!
The game slightly dims the colors of the characters who aren’t talking, so the text on the screen is being said by the character who’s lit up. Aurora is the Princess and Serata is the witch. All the other creatures are ghosts.
"Aurora at that time was mad at the feeling that everything living want to beat."
"My princess ......... do you do?"
(Fue's name was spelled wrong in the dialogue box the entire game.)
"Noisy woman come ........!"
"What a not suitable task for single cells like you it is!" (In Japanese, calling someone a "single cell" is like calling them "empty-headed" or "simple-minded" or "crap-for-brains".)
"there was a cocoon in the eyes of Aqua." (In the original Japanese, a "drop" formed in Aqua's eye. I have no idea where "cocoon" came from.)
"The sound of stepping on leaves with a clam"
"Spisa is standing in a standing manner."
"Please take you off me"
"Have you been got angry with by your subordinate ghost?"
"I'm here! It's not a small child's toilet......" (I couldn't make sense of this line even in the context of the conversation.)
"smiled and smiled" ... "quiet and quiet"
(Luce's name was left untranslated a couple times.)
"Serata approaches Aurora large crotch." (Again, no idea where "large crotch" came from.)
"Serata put her hand on his forehead and thoughts."
"Aurora is surrounded by anxiety that like her feet collapse."
"Serata put on Aurora's hand with fear."
"Aurora should drink roast nail stains of Princess Serata!" (In Japanese, to "drink brewed dirt from under A's fingernails" means "to be taught a lesson by A" or "to be put in their place by A".)
It goes without saying that Refreshing Sideways Puzzle Ghost Hammer could have benefitted from a native English-speaking editor before being released. Sometimes game companies will release update patches that fix early, unrefined translations. It’d be “refreshing” if that ends up being the case here too.
I love documenting poorly-translated Switch games, so if you know of any more, please share them in the comments or on Twitter!