Pokémon: Red/Blue – Old Man in Viridian City’s Dialogue Comparison (JP vs ENG)


I watched an old episode of DidYouKnowGaming earlier (excellent video game trivia channel), and among them they mentioned a tidbit about the Old Man in Viridian City and what he is actually saying in Japanese. I won’t ruin what it is for you to see for yourself if you’re not already aware!

I found it amusing, but got curious to look up the exact dialogue. I figured some Pokémon fans were aware of it already, but couldn’t actually find anyone who wrote the full (albeit short) dialogue out to show those who were curious like me. So, I thought to do something in the style akin to the great website Legends of Localization and compare them side by side.

Check it out below!

For when you first encounter him (before you pick up the parcel for Professor Oak):

Japanese Translated Localization
いくな!と いっとろーが
Uugh…! Hic…hold it right there!
Lissen to what I hafta say!
Don’ go, I said!
I absolutely forbid you from
going through here!
This is private property!


If you talk to the girl next to him…

Japanese Translated Localization
あらら じいちゃん!
こんな ところで ねちゃって
しょーが ないわね!
Good grief, Grandpa!
Sleeping here of all places!
It can’t be helped…
We have to wait until he sobers up…
Oh, Grandpa!
Don’t be so mean!
I’m so sorry.
He hasn’t had his coffee yet.

OMD2After you deliver the parcel to Professor Oak:

<Note> The below dialogue is from the original GameBoy version, yet the screen shot is from the remakes. While a bit more dialogue is added in the GBA remakes, the opening lines/meanings are the same:

Japanese Translated Localization
よっぱらってた みたいじゃ!
あたまが いたい・・・
ときに おいそぎ・・・かな?
Looks like I was pretty drunk!
My head hurts…
Are you in a hurry…?
Ahh, I’ve had my coffee now and
I feel great!
Sure you can go through!
Are you in a hurry?


This leads to the tutorial depending on player choice, but is the end of that important dialogue comparison! So… rather than being a passive-aggressive protector of his property, he was…well, passed out drunk. The more you know!

It was probably changed for obvious reasons regarding the target demographic of the game.

Funny enough, the girl no longer comments on anything related to the man after he sobers up, so there was nothing of interest there.

Hope you enjoyed this little translational tidbit! If you have any curiosities regarding what one may have said in Japanese versus what they said localized (and wonderful Legends of Localization did not already write about it) then feel free to contact me! It will also make my life a lot easier if you can provide comparison (English and original Japanese) with it!

Lastly, here is a bonus of the original GB version’s dialogue when he sobers up:


13 thoughts on “Pokémon: Red/Blue – Old Man in Viridian City’s Dialogue Comparison (JP vs ENG)

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  5. Hi, I’ve just discovered your blog and now I’m totally in love with it, it’s so great! ❤ I'm surely going to read as many articles as possible.
    Sorry to be so blunt, but I'm actually writing to pose a question: is it true that the lasses that challenge you on the Nugget Bridge in Generation One games (Route 24) are all intended to be prostitutes in the Japanese version? That's a claim I've often seen being made in the Italian fandom, but I've never found any information to support it, so I thought to ask you… if it doesn't disturb you, of course!
    Thanks in advance anyway and keep up with the good work!

    • Hi! Thanks for reading : ) I hope you enjoy!

      That’s very interesting, I’ve never heard that claim before. Do you have a translation of how the Italian translation wrote it? : ) I’ll add it to the list of things to look into, but I think it may be false!

      • Er, I’m sorry but I really can’t remember what the Trainers said in that instance, and I don’t even know any pre-Generation 3 games physically to check (ahah, I know, I’m always beeing looked up to because of how much a young fan I am), but I do have the Blue and Yellow versions downloaded on my 2DS, though I have already ended both games for about two years… But I could always try to restart one of them on a PC emulator (it is legal if I do own a legit copy, right?) and reach up to Celadon City to check the dialogue, after all it’s not that far into the game. But if anyone knows any cheat codes to get directly to that point, I would thank them very much! 🙂 Truth to be said, I think I would remember it if the Trainers said something funny, in fact the claim I’ve seen being made is that the Japanese script contained some sort of innuendo that was erased in the English localization (and all those based on it, of course). That could very well be a metropolitan legend, that’s true – maybe someone overinterpreted the censored sprites of the winking Beauties and that’s it. I’m sorry to be of so little help! But of course this is only a request and no one will oblige you to do some deep research if you don’t feel like it… Ahah, anyway I’m very thankful for your kindness and I apologise again!

        • Please don’t worry about it. I’ll look at the Japanese script when I can and get back to you on it later on. : ) I don’t remember anything sticking out as noteworthy on my Japanese run of the game though.

  6. Ah, a classic xD
    The change is understandable. On the other hand, the game is targeted to children in Japan as well so…cultural differences i guess -u-

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