Link’s Awakening Script Comparison: The Color Dungeon and Fishing

When reading the book about the color dungeon, the Japanese literally says “the power of color will rest on your clothes” while the English just vaguely refers to the power of color. E Switch also nicely cleans up some of E GBC’s fragmented text here.

The color dungeon is more accessible on Switch. You no longer have to answer what color the skeletons to get inside. The dungeon is literally called the “Clothes Dungeon” in Japanese. Also, the skeletons’ names are punny in both languages. “Gar-Dion” in English and “Mon-Ban” (gatekeeper) in Japanese. And “color guard” is a nice touch in English.

The owl statues and puzzles are now more accessible as well, using shapes in addition to color. Also English has some awesome rhymes.

The golem is a bit darker in Japanese, saying roughly “You should rot beneath this grave!”

In Japanese, the slime literally says “Boing! I’ll show you that we’re no weaklings! I’ll transform into a thing you can’t handle! Your sword won’t work!”

When you hit it with a sword, the Japanese gives an extra hint saying “Come at me with powder or a gun!” てっぽう generally means gun, but it’s possible it’s referencing gunpowder here, or otherwise trying to encourage the player to use a ranged weapon.

The boss is ド・ポーン (do po-n) in Japanese. ポーン (po-n) is the Japanese name of the Hardhat Beetle enemy. According to a wiki, this boss was referred to as “evil orb” and “D.Poon” in other English materials, corroborating the idea that the boss names were not previously official.

On GBC it keeps referring to the colors its shell changes into, but this is left out on Switch.
In English it talks to Link saying “Take your time,” but in Japanese it seems to be talking to itself, saying roughly “Buy some time! Buy some time!”

In Japanese, the fairy addresses Link as the “messenger of awakening”. On E GBC the fairy says “I’ll take you out” which has a kind of funny double meaning. This was revised on E Switch.

Time for some fishing! Most of this text has been added on Switch, though the fisherman’s comments remain more or less the same. In English when you catch a small fish, it says “Just like you” but Japanese doesn’t make this comparison. It’s a cute little addition.

In Japanese the fisherman says roughly “You gotta catch a bigger one!” whereas E Switch has “You gotta dream bigger than that!”
This line was changed to “It’s just a runt!” on E GB/C, likely to save space.

English uses more fishing language compared to Japanese.
J – “You’re quitting? Come back anytime you want.”
E – “All fished out?” “Come cast with me”

When you catch a big fish, the Japanese just says “Ugh… Heavy…” but the English spices it up a bit.

Again, English uses more fishing lingo than Japanese.
J – “This is huge!” vs. E – “That’s a lunker!”

Blooper’s name in Japanese is ゲッソー (gessou) a play on げそ (geso), which means squid tentacles. The text also plays on the adverb ゲソゲソ (gesogeso) which means “looking very thin” and derives from the word げっそり (gessori), meaning “lose weight/be disheartened.”

After catching a Blooper, the English has a fish pun. Japanese is roughly “All right! I’ll splurge and give you ___ rupees!”

In Japanese the giant fish is called a ヌシ (nushi), basically a word for legendary/special fish. It comes up a lot in games that feature fishing. English gives it a cool name instead to denote its legendary/special status. Also the Japanese just says “Wow! Amazing!” while English embellishes a bit more.

“Blow me down!” is a nice turn of phrase in English. The Japanese is literally “I’m astonished!”

Moving on, upon regaining the shovel after trading it for the boomerang, the English is nicely embellished versus the Japanese’s basic “Now you can dig again!” Afterwards, English gets a nice little joke added to it. The Japanese is literally just “Take care of my boomerang.”

Finally, cukeman’s text has been changed, no longer referencing common sayings around the office. For a more detailed look at its GB/C text see:

On Switch it just talks about ocarina songs. Also, the English is punched up to be silly and fun. The Japanese is roughly just “Wanna know some trivia? There are three songs on this island. They each have mysterious power. Try them in various places.”

That does it for all the side stuff! Next time we’ll wrap it up and face down the Nightmares.

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