This post is part of a series of Fire Emblem Fates localization comparison posts! I discuss anything from major to minor changes here as I play through the game. Today, we look at a scene from Chapter 1 of the game, which has been spreading around as sort of a meme.
Please note that this post is purely informative and may share some opinion, but this does not mean the change is necessarily good or bad. A change is just a change that is being looked into, and you can be the judge of whether you like it or not!
It is all just for fun and curiosity for me. : )
In Chapter 1, after sparring with Marx/Xander, Kamui/Corrin meets the rest of their siblings too. Elise playfully and cheerfully hugs her sibling, to which Leon replies with a simple line in Japanese below that changed for the English version:
Literally, it translates to “Good grief, you will be a brat forever, hmm?” To clarify, the word he uses (ガキ / gaki) is used for kids/brats (usually mischievous ones) as translated above. I would probably translate it more like “Sigh, a brat as usual, I see.” or something along those lines.
Regardless, let’s take a look at the English localization:
Elise, when do you intend to behave like the adult that you technically are?
The above has becoming a running joke of Elise’s age that she “technically is.” It was likely a change the localization made in order to age her character slightly to make some interactions less disturbing for people (and the marriage/children implication).
To be fair, one can see how the Japanese meaning can imply “Will you ever grow up?” which can more easily lead to the line above.
For me, the only troubles it really causes is later on when they still say lines (to people like Sakura) saying “You look to be of Elise’s age” (not exact quotes, but Kamui/Corrin does remark on it often). So does that mean all the characters aged? Or just Elise and they mean “around” her age (I recall they mention “around their age” for Sakura, but what is “around”? Does that mean Elise just became an adult? Or is almost an adult? xD) So more of just a matter of consistency. She still will produce a child somehow…
Unlike Awakening where the easy implication was “they will produce children…eventually” this game has it rather instant during the war time, and the Deeprealms’s different flow of time to explain how they grow up to fight with their parents. But that means the children are conceived during the game rather than a hypothetical afterward.
It’s really not a problem with me either way, a lot of people welcome the change to avoid potentially disturbing implications for those concerned (and not used to) the usual Japanese archetypes of this sort of character. Unlike Nowi from the previous game, who is more like Nyx and far above the age she appears to be, Elise is just the regular run of the mill child in mind and body. So, it was probably to avoid that.
Either way, that’s the line for you!
Just a note that age changes are nothing new to Fire Emblem (or Japanese media in general). The immediate example that comes to mind is how Lyn (Fire Emblem 7 / Rekka no Ken / Blazing Sword) was aged a few years in the English version.
I will continue to note these little differences (and major ones apparently in the supports!) as I go through the games. Feel free to point out anything that stands out and that need looking into! I have played all three games already in Japanese, so do not worry about spoilers.
What do you think about this slight change? It is minor in dialogue, but does change a lot about the character in the long run.