Today we have a reader request regarding a small scene in Xenoblade Chronicles 2:
…the line [on the screenshot] is from the Poppi QTpi quest when Pyra is lecturing Poppi about modest outfits… I mean really Pyra? lol was she saying this in Japanese or was this localisation maybe having some fun with irony with how Pyra herself is dressed?
I attached the screenshot of the line in question above! I thought it might be fun to look into. So what’s this like in Japanese?
Short answer: It’s mostly the same. It seems like both languages were going for a sense of irony as it revolves around Poppi wondering why Pyra is fine dressed as she is but tells Poppi to be more modest. However, English uses slightly different word choice to skirt around issues of skin exposure.
For those interested in more details, please keep reading. If not, then see you next article!
For context, this line comes from the optional “Powered-Up Poppi” quest. During the quest, since Poppi will be upgraded to be “more grown up,” Pyra considers getting Poppi new clothes, which leads to the following exchange:
Rex: Really? I think the ones she has right now look just fine…
Nia: Uh, if her body size changes, they’re not exactly going to fit, are they? If she gets bigger in the clothes she’s wearing now, things could get…awkward fast.
Pyra: Exactly! And it wouldn’t be fair on her not to have any nice outfits to wear after her special upgrade, anyway!
Poppi: Really? Mythra and Pyra both seem stylish with default look. Poppi is Blade too, so not really bothered about clothing.
Pyra: We can’t have that! Absolutely not! Blade or human, artificial or otherwise, you should at least have some sense of modesty!
Poppi: Hmmm… Poppi not really understand.
Japanese and rough translation: (Video used for reference).
Rex: そうなの？ 別に今のままでもいいんじゃないか？
Rex: Is that right? It shouldn’t be a problem to leave [the outfit] as it is, right?
Nia: いや 体格も変わるならそういうわけにはにかないだろ？今の服のまま大きくなったらそれこそまずいよ
Nia: No, if her physique changes, then that probably wouldn’t work. If she grew bigger but kept her current clothes that’d be awkward.
Pyra: That’s right! And wouldn’t it be pitiful to be so exposed after her remodeling?!
Poppi: そうですも？ヒカリやホムラもなかなかの格好ですもハナもブレイドですから 気にしないですも
Poppo: Really? [Based on] Mythra and Pyra’s appearances, and because Poppi is a blade too, Poppi doesn’t mind too much.
Pyra: No! Absolutely not! Poppi must be more modest!
Poppi: うーん よくわからないですも
Poppi: Umm, I don’t really get it…
The Japanese dialogue actually seems to flow better than the English in terms of the reader wondering what’s going on. One clear difference is that the English tries to skirt around the issue of exposed skin by talking about stylishness and clothing, where the concern in Japanese revolves around the relatively revealing outfits.
As a result, the English conversation can be a little awkward. Poppi does acknowledge that she’s using Mythra and Pyra as a base indirectly (“Mythra and Pyra both seem stylish with default look”) based on their stylishness, where as in Japanese Poppi didn’t think the exposed skin would really be a problem considering how Mythra and Pyra appear.
The “artificial or otherwise” is a localization exclusive bit, I suppose to incorporate Poppi’s artificial nature just to ensure all ground are covered in Pyra’s statement?
Regardless, both come back to the line in question with Pyra suggesting that Poppi be more modest in her attire, however. This is likely intentionally poking fun at the line coming from Pyra after what Poppi said about her outfit.
So, the line in question is the same, but the dialogue around it changed up a little bit. I think based on the above the Japanese may have been poking fun at this irony too, though.
As a side note, later in this same conversation when asking for an outfit to be made, Poppi says the following:
ENG: Since Poppi become very grown-up, want costume that looks glamorous!
JPN: では ハナはとてもアダルトになるのでセクシーな服にして欲しいですも
So, since Poppi will become a big adult, Poppi wants sexy clothes!
“Glamorous” does have a secondary definition that matches beauty that is sexually attractive, but it is certainly more indirect than Poppi’s Japanese. It sort of sticks out when compared to her general word choice and tone, too.
In the end, Poppi’s eventual outfit shows that Pyra’s demands likely went ignored, too.
Given the result, I am not sure what the purpose of it all was in that case, but it may show how much Poppi looked up to Pyra and Mythra, enough to emulate a similar sense of outfit.
Circling back to the reader’s question –it was not just a joke on the localization side, but seems like the original content was also poking a bit of fun at Pyra’s outfit and the irony in her asking for Poppi to be more modest.
I do wonder if a Blade chooses the outfit they’re born with, and if so, it’s possible Pyra and Mythra’s creator simply made them that way for their own eye candy, and Pyra wants Poppi to avoid a similar fate from her own creator…?!
That’s probably thinking too deeply about it, though. I accept that it is more likely just a silly poke at the purposefully exposed design that there are some fans of.
Any dialogue or moments that stuck out to you that piqued your curiosity? I recently completed this game as well as Torna: The Golden Country, so please feel free to reach out about any part of these two games. Let me know in comments or via email!