Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Answer

Friends, Imperials, countrymen: lend me your ears!


Hello, everyone. This is Leif Landevag, Project Coordinator for Darkside Translations. Most of you know me as TDOMMX - scriptwriter, programmer, graphics guru, and all-around jack-of-all-trades for Rosenkreuzstilette ~Blades of the Rose Cross~.

I have some very good news:

Those of you who have been following the Darkside Translations website (and I'm assuming that's maybe three of you), you probably know that, back in August, we hosted a series of panels on Neon Genesis Evangelion at Montreal Otakuthon. A little while before that, I got in touch with an aspiring young voice actress by the name of Amanda Lee. Long story short: I was really impressed with her English rendition of "Beautiful World" (for those of you who don't know, that's the ending theme to Rebuild of Evangelion), and she was honored that I wanted to use her performance as the ending theme to one of our panels.

The panels themselves were a huge success, and the songs we used were very well-received; I know that for a fact because a lot of people came up to the front of the room at the end asking us to upload them onto YouTube or onto our site, so we've done exactly that, if you haven't heard them before.

Anyway, a couple of weeks later, I got off of work early and remembered that TrickMasterMint was trying to produce an English dub of RKS with the help of Voice Acting Alliance. So, I decided to try and get in touch with Amanda to see if she'd be interested in taking part. At the same time, I remembered something I'd heard in an earlier podcast and decided to give it a shot. So, after sending out a couple of emails, I started translating the spoken dialogue for Spiritia Rosenberg and Freudia Neuwahl into English. When I was finished with that, I went to check my mail - and my jaw hit the floor when I realized I'd gotten a response. I listened to the two MP3s that were attached... and I nearly had a heart attack. Tristan MacAvery, the original voice of Neon Genesis Evangelion's Gendo Ikari, not only wanted to take part in the English dubbing, but he wanted to actively, in his own words, "pimp your game".


Naturally, this was a huge confidence boost. And, over the next few weeks, I was able to get in touch with a good number of professional voice actors. And my luck kept snowballing. Long story short: Amanda said "yes", and a good number of the people I had contacted wanted to take part in the "Blades of the Rose Cross" Project. I've received a couple of amazing auditions, and I have many more on the way.

So, yes, it's official: Rosenkreuzstilette is being dubbed into English. But not just any dub. LadyMiaow's YouTube review of our original English release [in the video description] noted that we could teach professional outfits a thing or two about localization. And our English dub is going to do the same.

As of this recording, Amanda Lee, Tristan MacAvery, and Kira Buckland are officially part of our cast. The first clip I posted was taken from one of the MP3s Tristan had originally sent me, and the second was an excerpt of Kira's delightful audition for the part of Iris. As for the others: Patrick Seitz, the voice of Ragna the Bloodedge from BlazBlue and Count Vlad Tepes Dracula from Castlevania, has expressed interest in taking part. Cristina Vee, who a lot of you know as Noel Vermillion from BlazBlue, Nanoha Takamichi from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, and Louise Leblanc de la Valliere from Familiar of Zero, will not only be taking part, but she'll be helping us with the casting and directing. Jennifer Alyx, the voice of Fate Testarossa Harlaown in Nanoha, will be acting alongside Cristina. I should note that none of the voice actors have been cast yet and we're still looking for five or six more voice actresses, so this is far from final.

Alright, enough with the buildup already. I'm sure all of you want to hear them in action right now, don't you? First, a couple of disclaimers, though:

1) These clips were taken from auditions, some of which were recorded without ever having heard the Japanese voices and with little or no direction.

2) I'm not an audiophile, but I'm a very quick study. I've applied a bit of filtering to try and compensate for the MP3 quality loss, and to try and recreate some of the special effects in the Japanese audio track, but I'm still no expert. So, if it ends up sounding like crap: sorry, I'm a newbie at this, so, uh, it's the best I can do.

Ladies and gentlemen, enjoy!

For those of you who dove head-first into this wall of text and didn't notice the underlined heading: this is a transcript of the MP3 at the top of this post. The one in red and blue. Start over and pay attention if you want to hear the voice samples - I'm not gonna transcribe them for ya. That'd kinda defeat the point, y'know.


  1. Oh yeah. You literally made my heart rate accelerate at 100 mph. This is going to kick. ass.

    And I can't believe we first mentioned this some time back. Now a dream we had is coming to reality. Thank you very much TDOMMX.

    P.S. If you can round up a gang to dub the game into English, could you find another group that can do great replacement songs of select tracks that fits the Zorne stage, boss battle themes, the dialouge sequences, etc?

  2. My lips are sealed on replacing the Rosenkreuzstilette soundtrack. We in no way, shape, or form condone altering the game in any way from its original Japanese release. Mint has no connection with DJ Ashura whatsoever, nor will we be attempting to bribe him to remastering the soundtrack like he did with the PlayStation Network release of Gundemonium Collection. Nor will we be overhauling the script in this release or consider inquiring what legal obstacles might prevent us from releasing the game on Steam, PSN, or X-Box Live Arcade.

    Nope. Not even thinking about it.

  3. Well even if some of the more serious levels, battles, and dialogue scenes have too upbeat and adventurous kicks to them, fine. It's your and Mint's project. I don't have to recommend anything to make the soundtrack actually go perfectly well with the stages and scenarios they were intended for.

    Again, everyone is entitled to their opinions.

  4. @Majutsusukai

    Ya talkin' about me, buddy?

  5. Sorry, Justin. The "Nope. Not even thinking about it." was the dead giveaway that I was using suspiciously-specific denial. Especially seeing as I made it perfectly clear that the next release would thoroughly polish the script. If something I say flat-out contradicts what I've already done (like, say, release the RKS Data Archive Decoder), that's when you're supposed to at the very least raise an inquisitive eyebrow.

    Majutsukai is right - either your sarcasm detector is broken, or you're not as perceptive as you think you are...

  6. Here we go again, the Schwer and Schwer Alike clan vs. one autistic young adult that suffers from an inferiority complex because an entire fanbase attacked him over different opinions several years ago.

    TDOMMX, when you said "not even thinking about it", I dead knew you didn't have any desire whatsoever, nor were you going to modify the RKS soundtrack. I know the only thing you want to change is the dialogue from the characters to make it into English, in combination with your already translated text from years ago. If you don't want to adjust the music, that's your decision; I said you're entitled with what you want to do. You're allowed to keep the game as close to the original as you like it. Besides, you're trying to make it so that English players can better understand the story, which is a damn good thing, something that a number of us could use. Plus if it's executed well enough, alongside my self-choice of a soundtrack and sound effect modifications, could allow me to have one grand slam of a time with Rosenkreuzstilette, and possibly consider applying the English text translation after all these debates and points I've made with you via e-mail.

    And that first post I made, just incase, wasn't intended to be sarcasm. And the P.S. part was also literal; Just for an example, play Zorne's stage with the BGM of the Volcano world from Super Monkey Ball 2 and you'll get the picture, or fight any of the main Magi bosses with any other boss theme from another smash hit game (I recommend the one from Mega Man X6).

    If you disagree with what I'm saying, like I said, everyone is instilled to their own opinions and shouldn't be attacking/flaming others because of this. And TDOMMX, I highly respect you and your works down to the bone, but if you really want to Seelegewehr me down, go right ahead. I won't stop you.

    And to you, Majutsukai, I have nothing else to say.

  7. I apologize if I riled anyone on this site up, Just haven't had a real good history with the English Rosenkreuzstilette fanbase. :\

  8. hmmm. Now that the cat's out of the bag, I'm surprised there are some VAs even I ended up hearing from before, and I don't have a massive host of games that I play, though I love sidescrollers. I wonder how the process was to get these VAs recruited? More so, I wonder how much they'll be making off this project? I have a game in development that has a similar concept of a mostly girl cast but have never done voice casting before.

  9. (...sigh...)

    Justin, every single statement in my reply to your first post was a bold-faced lie. I was telling you exactly what we were planning while pretending to outright deny it. That's what "suspiciously-specific denial" means. Majutsukai noticed that my post was sarcastic from beginning to end, but you didn't and he was making a quip about it. The message I was conveying was the exact opposite of what I had typed, kind of like when someone says "genius" or "Einstein" as a roundabout way of calling another person stupid or moronic.

    I hate to say this, but you really do have a persecution complex, bringing up some sort of "clan" mentality when we were just commenting that you misunderstood my post. Your follow-up posts just confirmed that you didn't understand what I was saying, so I'd have no way of defending you if anyone accused you of missing the point. Sorry, but you kinda dug your own grave there, man. (^_^;)

    Abster, the process is much simpler than you think:

    "Hi, [insert name here]. I'm working on something and I'm looking for some voice actors. Would you be interested in taking part?"

    Possible answers:
    1) "Sure. What do I need to do and when do you need it by?"
    2) "Sorry, but I'm a bit too busy at the moment."
    3) "Sorry, but I don't voice that kind of thing."

    Infuriatingly enough, some people decide to slander and libel celebrities when the answer to "I'm making a porn cartoon" is met with #3. It's happened before, and it sickens me.

  10. Wish it could be that simple, but this is a full fledged original game project from scratch.

  11. So I'm coming to two conclusions: Either you do have contact with a music company to mod the soundtrack but for the sake of keeping this English dub close to the original you refuse to do it, or you're going to evolve from possibly the nicest guy on this site to Viper's lows of ignorance and brutality and saying there's no way you can defend me and that I'm digging my own grave.

    I perfectly understand sarcasm, and knew the "Nope, Not even going to think about it" meant exactly what it said in the tin. Yes ladies and gents, I read TVtropes. And let me elaborate on why I say this entire clan is up against me. Remember when I was a member of Rockman Perfect Memories prior to Vixy banning me without warning? Everyone was in an all out war, attacking me just because of my different opinions of liking RKS. And half a year following my banning, your fellow blog writer Viper brought up a number of users, quite possibly including himself since he can't learn to get over our problems still despise of me even after I was taken off the site. And every once in a while, when I post onto SASA, I always get some kind of negative remark like people saying I'm still an attention whore/troll following months after the incident when I exclaimed I changed multiple times, even having to say the F word when I tried to convince Viper that I changed.

    To everyone on SASA, stop treating me like garbage. I just want to be a fellow fan of RKS and a commenter on the blog. But if you're really going to attack me by saying I don't get sarcasm or because my ways of liking RKS are quite different than everyone's here, all I can say, is you guys have another thing coming if you continue to screw with me just because my brain works differently than yours.

    And the "another thing coming" part was fake. But look deep down into your hearts and you'll see what I mean.

  12. Sorry if this is off-topic, but [erka:es] just posted a new blog update with a screenshot of Freu fighting a slightly-changed Astaroth.

  13. Heh, Freu vs. Santa Astaroth. Guess they're trying to keep the game winter-themed due to Freudia's main ability.

  14. So we were right to think about a fandub ! Nice project, TDOMMX !

    Samples are already quite nice at this stage, for a beginning, this is becoming really entertaining.
    I'm surprised how voices keep a good "feeling", as Japanese shouts are hard to reproduce in others languages.

    For the moment, I laught about how a French dub should be awful when thinking of old dubings we made here @_@

  15. :/

    Didn't know I was going to touch off an argument with my friendly little barb there.

    Honestly, it was meant in good fun; I wasn't trying to insult you or anything.

  16. Okay everyone. I just had a little chat outside of SaSA with TDOMMX. We've resolved things, and my honest apologies if I made any threats. This apology is also directed at Majutsusukai. Sorry I took your first comment the wrong way.

  17. Wait which Dracula? The guy voicing him now (i.e. in Dracula X Chronicles)? The SOTN Dracula? Or one of his other voice actors from the past?

  18. He is the current Dracula. OOE, Judgement, Dracula X PSP ectra. IMO he's quite good at it to.

  19. Finally, something to motivate me to play RKS.

    To think that I made a shitty one and a half hour long sprite based animation movie thing on RKS before knowing what it even was in the first place. Wouldn't be the first time I did a school project without knowing what I'm doing first.

    Also, would I be able to use my PSP as a controller to play RKS? It can act as a normal USB controller when I want it to.

    I use it to play Megamari, Touhou, GBA/SNES/NES/PS games, and other stuff.

    Basically anything other than PSP or current gen games.

  20. I failed to realize the sarcasm in earlier posts and gave me an additional question. What part of the RKS soundtrack needs remastered? There's only a few tracks I like but I wonder why the choice. Also, this means you're trying to put RKS as a retail product. Again, I wonder how that's possible?

  21. Hugh> We use a X360 "SF4" controller for the PC games like RKS or Megamari, works fine. No reason a PSP with USB link couldn't work if you already use it.

    With the keyboard, it's awful IMO...

  22. Anonymous, Patrick is this guy. As far as I'm concerned, he is Dracula; I was ready to have Tristan play the part of Zeppelin until Patrick unexpectedly said "I'm interested in this...". I think it goes without saying how the male casting will go down...

    Abster, the soundtrack doesn't actually need remastering, but neither did Gundemonium Collection's or Guilty Gear's. Arc System Works and Falcom have set a trend, remixing soundtracks for subsequent releases of the same game. I thought it'd be a nice idea to have RKS follow suit by adding a "Soundtrack Select" feature in the Options menu. Like I was saying (for those of you who picked up on what should have been obvious sarcasm), Mint and Ashura are good friends, so there's a chance we'll be able to convince him to remix the soundtrack. If he's willing, awesome. If not, we'll have to see if someone else would be interested. Nothing is set in stone just yet.

    ...I think it goes without saying that we'll be trying to integrate a "Language Select" feature into the game.

    I'd really like to see RKS get an official English release. To that end, I'm asking around to see 1) if we can find a publishing venue, 2) exactly what legal hurdles we need to overcome to make it happen - copyrights, character likenesses, what have you, and 3) if we can arrange for some kind of funding budget to offset the recording studio costs (this isn't a fandub - not by a long short!). A decently-equipped studio is $120 per hour. The actors already aboard are willing to work pro bono, but we'd really like to be able to give them more than just a "thank you" to show our gratitude.

    Killing Doll, playing the game on a keyboard is surprisingly easy if you map your keys right. Movement to WASD, Pause to K, Fire to L, and Jump to Semicolon. Weapon Switch with O and P. Works like a charm for me whenever I'm not carrying my Dual Shock 2 with me.

    One more thing: as I mentioned in the announcement, the English dub concept was Mint's brainchild. I essentially stole his Blitzdonner by accomplishing more in a month than he was able to in a year, but I'd like everyone to be aware that the dub was his idea, even if I'm the one actively producing it.

  23. Well I already mentioned what and why I wanted an alt. and more fitting soundtrack.

  24. Whoops. Typo: it's DM Ashura, not DJ Ashura. The "DM" stands for "Digital Maestro", a rather appropriate title when you hear his work. You can find some of it in the PSN versions of Gundemonium Recollection, Gundeadligne, and Hitogata Happa.

  25. Am I the only one who likes Zorne's Stage BGM? Honestly...

    Letty, I appologize in advance for bringing this up to Justin.

    Justin, are you just forgeting the reason why you were banned from RockmanPM for the first time or are you purposely denying the fact that you treated everybody like a total dick and trolled all the Rosenkreuzstilette fans and anyone who tried to help you get over your crappy style of SuperJustin? Go ask Nekomata, Vixy, ProtomanBlues and some of the other members of RockmanPM and prove me wrong.

    And here you are claiming that I can't get over something that you usually start. May I remind you that you alone were treating me (and Letty and some other users) like crap at the SASA's Facebook page once I started hanging out over there. Letty and I have the proof and Letty banned you onced for your actions. I've told you this before that I was over your own HS, but evidently you wanted to start something was me at Facebook, so maybe it's YOU who can't man up and get over it.

    Oh yeah, and before you ever dare call me ignorant again, you may want to think twice about that "Mr. I will bash an indepent game and claim to like it and I think I can make a better 'game' than [erka:es] by stealing their IP, give it a bunch of gay-looking 'male' counterparts to the original cast, and bend the story in a way that it would only come from the likes of 9-year-old wannabe otaku and deceive people from the truth".

  26. TDOMMX, if DM Ashura is out of the question for remaking the game's soundtrack, could Woofle be a good second choice? I just starting to hear Woofle's work on Rockin' Android's Steam Edition of Hitogata Happa that came out recently and I'm impressed with the first stage's BGM remix. You might be able to listen to the music from the Steam version's demo or you could try hearing the music from this video (sadly there's no non-commentary videos that I've found yet).

  27. @Viper.

    Don't get me wrong, I like the BGM for Zorne's stage. It's only the way it's used in the game itself. A super-peppy song used for a lava/mountains level? Errnt.

    Well yes, I was a troll. And I deeply remember now that you bring it up. But part of my trolling was based on my different opinions in regards to RKS over anyone else. Let me ask you, Viper, what do you know and feel about treating people over different opinions?

    Here's the thing Viper, I have a love/hate relationship with you. Yea, stunning huh? While I do envy you for being a great gamer and a fellow fan of RKS, I dislike you because for one thing, you're very ignorant of my work ever since "that thing" that happened roughly two years ago, and the fact that somehow you keep accomplishing many of the feats ever since I've known you. World Record in World Ends with You? Check. Blogwritter of this blog? Double-check. But as you know, that means nothing. As for RPM, you see why I no longer go there. While I have gotten complements for my works on that site, I still avoid becoming part of a discussion just to avoid being picked on for being a former troll.

    You are the reason I put myself down, you are the reason why I always have to say my characters are heterosexual, you are the reason I have to put so much detail into my characters. But on behalf (or is it), it's my fault that I ruined our lives. -__-

    And one last slap in the head:

    "Mr. I will bash an indepent game and claim to like it and I think I can make a better 'game' than [erka:es] by stealing their IP, give it a bunch of gay-looking 'male' counterparts to the original cast, and bend the story in a way that it would only come from the likes of 9-year-old wannabe otaku and deceive people from the truth."

    First off, the furthest I've ever gotten in RKS was up to Iris Stage 3 during the Iris Machine Phase II bossfight, which is much more than half of the game, in fact, it's almost to the end. It's a greatly-executed Mega Man clone, but it has an overabundance of instant-death traps and a lot of "borrowed" graphics from other sources. Call it being a tribute, parody, doujin, or whatever, but like I had said, everyone is entitled to their opinions. You think it's a total masterpiece in doujin history, and I just think it's so-so.

    If I were ever to make a non-profit Mega Man clone for myself, I would, in no way possible, steal any of WOMI's creation(s) and give very little to no credit for characters I didn't design, no claim that my game will surpass Rosenkreuzstilette nor ~Freudenstachel~. None of its characters would be homosexual, and all would be designed from scratch, not connected to the RKS canon in any way.

  28. @Viper
    We've discussed this already a million times, I thought we were done with this.

  29. Sarcasm cannot be expressed over the internet, it's pointless to even try.

  30. Okay, seriously, enough of this. Please don't make me have to set up comment approval again, because I will.

  31. New [erka:es] update from WOMI.

    Says something about the final boss having been completed.

  32. Then to complete the game: BGMs, difficulty balancing and debug... That's quite some work left, but good news.

  33. Just went to the [erka:es] blog and saw no new update. The recent one is still the one with "Violet Santa Astaroth", Is that just a translation of the accompanying text?

    Anyways, Isemiya has officially left the project. He is now gone from the "Staff" section of the site, all that remains is an altered link to WOMI's homesite, which now no longer leads to the redirect page.

  34. I think Justin should make a one and a half hour long sprite based animation.

    Don't ask why, just get on it, pal.

    *Unnecessary scene transition here*

    I can't wait to buy RKS with that English dub. As long as it's not over $12, I should have enough to pay for it.

    But I'm guessing that it'll take a while for the dub to come out.

    Hey, TDOMMX, give me some numbers, so I know how much to save up for. If it's going to take a while for you to get it dubbed, I should have enough time to save up.

    Not only that, I have to wait until I go back to my parents house, so that I can deposit some bucks into my account.

    I got cash, not credit.

  35. Glad to hear it, Hugh. I'm sorry to say that the game was never that cheap...

    At the moment, we're in the pre-production stage. That is, we're rewriting the script, accepting auditions, and casting the actors. Womi doesn't yet know about the English dub - we're going to surprise him with a business plan showing everything we've accomplished thus far. I'm hoping that he'll be convinced to include a dual-language option in the original game and possibly reprint the game with a reversible English cover. If that doesn't happen, our dub release will be the same as our original one; a free-of-charge patch to be installed over a legitimate copy of the game. The game is still 1,260 yen at DLSite - that's roughly $16.50 USD instead of $13.50 since the exchange rate has changed over the past two years.

    If we're able to clear the copyright hurdles, we'll try first and foremost to release the game on Steam. Our target price point would be less than $20, though we can't say for sure since the release is a long ways off.

    Remember, we've paid out of our own pockets for something that may very well be released for free, so please respect our wishes when we ask not to help people pirate the game (you have no idea how many "pre-patched English rips" I've found in the past while, some uploaded by commentators on this very blog -_-)...

  36. I guess I'll just wait, then.

    Seems like the most logical thing for me to do right now.

    I have no problem at all if I have to pay $25 or so. 3DS games are $43, after all. The only problem is that I don't exactly have the funds to do so.

    You can say I'm one of those generic broke college students.

    On an unrelated note, I'm almost done with an abridged version of my RKS sprite movie thing that still has no real name.

    One and a half hours is far too long. I'm going to make it four or so minutes.

    The most complaints came from it's sheer length. Even I, myself, wouldn't want to view it a second time.

    It might come from the way that I explain things with more sentences than I need.


    Okay, yeah, I finished it now.

    It's only four and a half minutes long, so it shouldn't waste as much time as the hour and a half version.

  38. New [erka:es] blog update again, this one features a new screen of Freu walking in a graveyard under a blue moon, with a recolored version of the blue undead enemy from an earlier blog update right before her.

  39. I sense that this skeleton creature will be an important plot device.

  40. Iris' English voice is a big turn on!
    Are they going to dub all the dialogue in story mode, or is it going to be the same as the original?

  41. Nako, you have no idea exactly how much Alex wants this to be a Full-Voice Version instead of a partial one. The plan we're submitting to Womi will be requesting the implementation of a couple of additional features, and voices for the story scenes would be one of them. The problem is, Womi isn't much of a programmer himself, so he'd have to hand off the source code to someone who knows exactly what they're doing.

    Hmmm... Now where would we find someone like that? :-P

    That's Kira Buckland's audition for Iris you're hearing. Tristan is trying to get in touch with Jessica Calvello (Excel Excel from Excel Saga), but I think Kira does a fine job as Iris. Kira, Amanda, and Tristan voice the nine characters in the announcement clip - can you guess who's who? I'm curious what you all think about each of the voices.

  42. >Cristina Vee
    Please no. I'm fine with everyone else, but please not her. She's awful.

  43. Sorry to be a pain but how's progress with the project going?