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16-Bit Glory

by Zac Bertschy,

ANNCast 114 - 16-Bit Glory

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This week we have two very special guests: Victor Ireland, the man behind Working Designs, the company that released classic JRPGs like Lunar back in the day to massive acclaim (and controversy). Today he's heading up Gaijinworks, and working with Monkeypaw Games to release Class of Heroes 2 in a super-extreme-mega deluxe edition, and to prove the buying power of the JRPG fanbase. Joining him is John Greiner, the former head of Hudson Soft and the current president of Monkeypaw Games. Together these two have a combined 35+ year history in the world of Japanese video games, and naturally we brought in Todd Ciolek to help root around in their brains for a while. We talk about the glory days of the Turbografx-16, the initial fan reaction to Bill Clinton jokes in Sega CD games, Japanese fans reverse-importing the US Lunar boxes and, well, pretty much everything you can think of related to the glory days of the JRPG. You can check out their Kickstarter project at the link above.

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NSFW Language Warning: There is a little swearing. You'll be OK.

ANNCast episode 114 breakdown

00:30 Victor Ireland and John Greiner introduction and how Victor got his start with JRPGs

12:00 Working Designs' famous "conversational" translations

17:20 Censorship in the early days of game localization

20:50 John Greiner's days at Hudson Soft and pretty much the entire history of the Turbografx 16 (plus: the real story behind JJ and Jeff!)

45:10 The closing of Hudson Soft and what's up with all those old properties

50:10 The Class of Heroes II Kickstarter and why they're trying to raise half a million dollars to localize a game

01:06:30 Victor's take on the current state of JRPGs

01:23:50 Twitter time! Monkeypaw Games and their philosophy on localization, The PlayStation anti-2D policy and oh, so much more!

That's it! See you next week!

Have questions for the ANNCast crew? Tweet 'em to @ANNZac! Or check out the community forums thread about the show, or send email questions to zac@animenewsnetwork dot com!

Theme Song: "Bucharest" by The New Division. Check them out on iTunes!

Special thanks to Phillip Harrington for designing and creating the ANNCast logo.

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