Planescape: Torment, the classic RPG we ranked at number 11 in our latest list of the top 100 games on PC, is well-known for its wordiness. Its script is 950,000 words long. Which is presumably why, when it was released in Japan, only the manual was translated.
Official localizations in French, German, Korean, Polish, and Czech are available for the Enhanced Edition these days (though the latter two don\’t have translated audio, just text). Japanese players remained out of luck, unless they could read English of course. Until one volunteer, a member of the translation circle TRANAZ, sat down for 3,000 hours translating every single word of philosophical rambling, descriptions of the structure of the multiverse, and a floating skull flirting with zombies. They even programmed their own font tool, and the end result has scratched-up menu text that actually looks nicer than the smooth English font.
TRANAZ reached out to Torment\’s developer to ask about distributing the language pack and were told that sharing it with other players was fine, so long as it was distributed for free with the understanding that the rights to the text remain those of the copyright holder. And that\’s why, 21 years after its original release, players can download PST_JPMOD and finally experience Planescape: Torment in Japanese.
(Thanks to Patrick Alexander on Twitter for spotting this.)