Aksys On Bringing Sorcery Saga: Curse of the Great Curry God Sweet To The West

By Spencer . December 14, 2013 . 5:30pm

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Sit down with a warm plate of curry and hear the tale about Sorcery Saga; Curse or the Great Curry God. Siliconera spoke to Mike Engler from Aksys to discuss Vita roguelike and how they localized the wacky story where you explore dungeons in search of crystal carrots and other ingredients to make a legendary curry.

 

What made Aksys want to pick up Sorcery Saga: Curse of the Great Curry God as one of their projects?

 

Mike Engler, Localization Editor: When we all played it, it was a lot of fun. There are several of us in the punishing rogue-thing. Since we don’t have too many games in our portfolio that are cute, yet soul crushingly hard at times. All in all, what it boiled down to is it was a fun game and enough of us liked it that we went after it.

 

So, let me get this straight. In Sorcery Saga, you’re going to venture into dangerous dungeons to get ingredients to make a legendary curry?

 

Yep. That was also part of the appeal, the disconnect between the story and the gameplay. It looks like it will cause you diabetes, but the gameplay itself is about as traditional roguelike as you can possibly get.

 

While at the same time trying to save a friend’s restaurant, dodging "heroes", besotted Evil Lords, and jealous girlfriends. As with all good farces, Sorcery Saga starts out with a series of misunderstandings, misplaced anger, false bravado, and several convenient plot devices. In the end, Sorcery Saga’s story is about friendship, redemption, and the quest for a darn fine plate of curry.

 

Cooking curry actually has effects in dungeons, what kind of curry do you make Pupuru cook?

 

You can have Pupuru whip up 28 different kinds of curry (29 if you include the "Legendary Magic Curry"). Looking back at the list, it seems that I kept most of the curry names in line with what you’d find in the real world or reasonably non-insane, mainly because the dreaded scourge of character limits… However, I doubt that your average chicken curry will automatically level you up or dispel the curses various enemies will put on your items…

 

Some of the other curries recipes you can make on the run include Wild Curry, Maiden Curry, Kitty Curry, and STAR Curry. As for their benefits? Well, you’re just going to have to (hopefully) discover that for yourselves…

 

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How did you go about localizing a wacky story like Sorcery Saga?

 

Sorcery Saga was actually a lot easier than you’d think as most of the humor is mostly situational, and not based on elaborate and mostly untranslatable puns. While I’m all for punditry, a lot of the humor is situational where you take an ensemble cast, mix them together, and the humor comes from misunderstandings and personality clashes. It’s sort of like a more cynical version of Friends.

 

Once you get past the first dungeon and all of the characters get introduced in the mix, they are very defined and they are firmly convinced that they way they are behaving is perfectly acceptable. The way one person perceives reality isn’t exactly the same as how another person receives reality. Maybe Seinfeld would be a closer equivalent. As for approach, I make it a point to stay within the framework of the original text’s intent (more or less) and just work with/off of what’s already there. Luckily, I have a pathological fondness for the kind of non sequitur humor used in the game, so doing the story text (and a majority of the item text) was more a matter of just drinking way too much coffee and letting the dialog fall out of my head in a very stream-of-consciousness manner.

 

The two things I did make it a point to do in order to preserve the over-the-top zaniness of the original script was to avoid any naughty language (think lots of "crud" "heck" etc), and to accentuate the eccentricities and quirks of each of the characters. This let me stay out of the way of the characters in a figurative sense and allowed the natural inclination for the them to go at each other like rabid, slightly confused and exasperated weasels to flourish.

 

But honestly, the story of Sorcery Saga is naan-sense of the best kind.

 

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The humor in the game is more based in the never-ending personality clashes between the characters, so having to come up with actual "jokes" wasn’t really an issue. However, there were a few places where I had to be creative with the situations presented, as sometimes Japanese humor doesn’t travel well between cultures. In these cases, I went with obtuse innuendos. Lots and lots of obtuse innuendos.

 

What is your favorite scene in Sorcery Saga?

 

Probably the first major scene after you make it through the tutorial dungeon, as that when most of the major characters are introduced and their personalities are identified. The misunderstandings, accusations, and evil intent are all foreshadowed there, and it gives you a brief glimpse into the depth of the rabbit hole Pupuru is almost forced to fall through.

 

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What… is Kuu?

 

Kuu is life. Kuu is hope. Kuu is a shining beacon of righteousness whose light cuts through the darkness of the end times. But in reality, Kuu was a royal pain in the ass and forced me to get very creative with pronoun usage, as it’s never disclosed what, exactly, Kuu is.

 

So… you worked on Fate/Extra and I heard that Fate/Extra CCC was being shopped around to publishers… can you say if Aksys is working on this at all?

 

Hmm… I heard about the game and it was released in Japan. Fate/Extra is a great game and I highly recommend everybody pick it up, but don’t start with Caster unless you like frustration for the first hour of the game. And my answer is: yes, I like curry very much.


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  • r0gamer940

    stop trolling us with ccc

    • Kumiko Akimoto

      they pulled an atlus

  • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

    I want this game so bad~. I decided I will actually get a Vita just to play this (and adding Ys, ToH and Gravity to the list to make it worthwhile). The cute is too much to resist, and I like a lot of what I see and hear.

    I also just to support Aksys, because I totes appreciate them.

    • anarchy_panty

      imo, a Vita is worth it for Gravity Rush alone. It’s an absolutely fantastic game.

      • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

        I’m starting to feel that~.
        Thanks for the extra recc on it. ♥

    • Mnstrzero00

      I haven’t been able to find out much about it. Can you collect alternate costumes for the main character? How deep are the customization options?

      • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

        I only know what’s been posted on Sili, myself. I haven’t seen anything indicating alt costumes though or anything too heavy on customization.

        • http://burnpsy.wordpress.com/ burnpsy

          Here’s the thing with customization: You unlock different dresses and headgear and you progesss. You have to wear one of each at any given time. That’s the extent of visual customization. There’s also a lot of “DLC” costumes, but I use “DLC” in quotations, because you don’t actually download it. You conntect to the internet on startup to unlock them each time you play.

          Yes, you read right, all of the DLC, even the free ones, have to call home each time you boot up the game to be used.

          • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

            Huh. That’s pretty interesting. thanks for the info~!

          • easter

            I’ve read on GAF that there’s a risk of crashing your game if you leave it connected to PSN. Something to do with the DLCs, even if you haven’t gotten any of them or something.

            So, play with Airplane mode to be safe for now.

          • flufftime

            So in other words this game has “DRM” dlc? I’m not exactly okay with that since its on a mobile platform…

    • WyattEpp

      Yeah, this game pretty much sold me on a Vita, too.

      …I’m too easy. orz

    • Safeer Humayoon

      Get Tearaway,Wipout 2048,Unit 13,uncharted golden abyss and killzone mercenary as well.

      • http://twitter.com/puchixseda puchinri

        I’m not too keen on any of those except Wipeout, but they do look like quality titles~.

        • ヴァルラシュ

          You really should get Tearaway, at least play the demo when you get a vita

  • Kami nii

    They Just Had to mention Fate.Extra CCC now I remember the pain again I was heartbroken when this game was not localized, I loved the first game and I want to play ccc but I can’t :( I bought the curry game btw,

  • Khoo Neekang Kazuki

    they avoided the question…

    • Arcana Wiz

      it was fun the way they avoided… they didnt even answer the question!

  • Vermillion

    wow. that CCC *spoiler* ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

    my first F/E gameplay is with *glass canon type* caster.
    it’s sad Fate/Extra CCC doesnt allowed this again.

    • natchu96

      You call her glass cannon, but she’s really more for manipulating the system than actual raw damage. Archer always had the absurd skill damage potential, and CCC actually amplifies this further with Excalibur Image in his skill list. Or so I heard.

      Defense was kinda moot for all of them. Caster has a stronger version of guard that returns mp, Archer can nullify everything once he gets his stacks going, and Saber has infinite extra lives. They were really only useful against Noble Phantasms too, they can’t be spammed effectively (or in Saber’s case, doing so does nothing), and NPs were the only unblockable things that could OHKO you.

  • Pdugna

    Love Aksys, Atlus, XSEED, NIS and way many others for actually publishing these games for the Vita in 2014 when most think it’s pretty much dead in NA

    • natchu96

      Can’t really die when it’s still a newborn in the hospital room.

      Everything starts off a bit slow. It might get better as the good stuff gets churned out. And with the PSP being dead for real there aren’t that many handhelds for Sony to put things in.

      • FlyingPony

        True that, and while PSP was die on arrival in US, in Japan it was a jRPG and visual novel heaven, just all the gems never get localized.

        Now we get Xseed, the localization problem will be lifted, mostly, and we will get plenty of games to play on Vita.

    • PreyMantis

      Dead? People are crazy. A system doesn’t die, only discontinued. And I don’t see the Vita getting discontinued now or anytime soon.

      • flufftime

        Yeah, I think “dead” is a little extreme. Sure it may have lower sales than other consoles/handhelds but its still selling.

  • Mace

    Has anyone picked this up yet and can vouch for the game. $35 seems a bit steep for something like this. How is it compared to Dungeons of Dredmor/The Pit. I’ve been curious about this game.

    • Gustavo

      I’m not experienced with roguelikes so can’t tell you how it compares to other games in the genre. What I can say is that this game is so cute that it hurts and the music is great, so far I’m enjoying it very much.

  • Arcana Wiz

    Lol at the end of the interview it was one of the best avoided question answer that i saw in these years…

    • natchu96

      Key to avoiding questions: Yes, I love curry very much XD

      • Daru Titor

        It could be code for yes, they’re working on it…..
        Then again, they could do what Atlus did earlier with P2 EP for PSP and cite unusual circumstances as the reason for no release.

        (and then not say anything about said “circumstances”)

  • Manny Being Manny

    The fact that Aksys didn’t answer the CCC question is a good sign. If they didn’t have plans to bring it over, wouldn’t they just say that?

    • http://lehst.wordpress.com/ Lehst

      no, it isn’t a good nor a bad sign. companies don’t like to say they aren’t publishing something because it can have negative effects. and then they might change their minds so they have to leave the door perpetually open.

      • natchu96

        Let them dream, man, let them dream.

        Occasionally dreams do come true.

        • http://lehst.wordpress.com/ Lehst

          *sigh* I hope this one does. Been supporting it on Aksys forums~

      • flufftime

        I think its more of them gauging the hype before making any decisions than anything else

  • TheExile285

    Lol @ how they described Kuu xD

  • HellMuT

    Are we getting bibs?

  • http://resettears.wordpress.com/ Reset Tears

    Huge props to Aksys for bringing over Curry God. It’s one of those games that at first glance looks unlikely to be localized, but here it is–and on the Vita, no less. It looks like a unique and fun game; I hope lots of people give it a try.

  • Croix Zapp

    how long is this game anyways?

  • ShawnOtakuSomething

    I want the bibs..the game sounds uniqueas hell

  • Xerain

    I started with Caster; I won with caster. Caster is win.

  • Michael Connell

    They answered the Fate/Extra CCC question with a curry related answer, CCC is from Type Moon, Type Moon heroine Ciel is a renowned lover of curry. This must mean…I’m desperate for any hint of a localization of CCC ;_;

    • Xerain

      Actually I think this interview is a good indication that Aksys is indeed working on CCC…. However they are making extensive localization changes. CCC now stands for “Cyber Curry Carnival” and most of the dialog is being changed to reflect that.

    • Will John

      I know Kotomine from Fate also likes curry, so…..

      • darkbartz

        Nah, Kotomine is all about the Mapo Tofu.

        • Will John

          DAMN, your right how could I get them confused?
          Shame on me

          • Michael Connell

            Well there does exist mapo curry which can include tofu so perhaps…

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/xxHiryuuxx Tohsaka

      There’s 3 C’s in CCC.

      Half Life 3 confirmed.

  • Rogerrmark

    I would get this ASAP I beat The Guided Fate Paradox. If I had a Vita,lol.

    Although it’s actually Paradox that’s beating the crap out of me.And I love it D:

  • Dominic Hunter

    “But in reality, Kuu was a royal pain in the ass and forced me to get very creative with pronoun usage”

    Pfffhahaha!! I really liked this interview. I could only imagine that Aksys hung their heads with pre-emptive disappointment as they released their niche JRPG adaptation in the middle of a next-gen console launch. But then I read this and see that they seem to be in good spirits and are having fun with their work. That alone makes me want to give them all the support I can, you know?

    The text adaptation DEFINITELY has that 11/10 Aksys quality I remember from Blazblue! If you listen to the spoken Japanese and read the dialogue text, you can see where they took liberties to give the script a bit of punch that makes the jokes a bit funnier and gives the characters a bit more flair and personality than the original (in my opinion).

    For example, I would have liked to ask Mr. Engler here how/why he decided to add the cute “indecisive speech” thing to Puni. She’s a character with what you would call a “denpa” (weird, spacey, disconnected) personality , and if you listen to the audio, that stuff isn’t really in the original script (I don’t think). But it ended up being a pretty endearing/cute improvement, so it makes me wanna ask him more about the kinds of things he encounters/does when localising game scripts.

    • Rogerrmark

      I actually feel the same. That’s why I’m supporting Aksys,NIS,Atlus and XSeed all the way.

      I don’t like all the games,of course, but admire the courage to publish this kind of niche title.

      Wish more publishers and developers were like this.

    • http://burnpsy.wordpress.com/ burnpsy

      From what I could hear, Puni’s indecisiveness could be in the original script. Though I admittedly wasn’t paying much attention. I certainly heard a verbal tic of some sort that may be analogous.

  • ReidHershel

    For those who own the game, what is your opinion on it?

    • Billy Kostyra

      Will its a basic roguelike ! with great story , great gameplay , Lovable character , and the music is also another strong point in this game,, personally ! I think it’s one of the best jrpg on the Vita .

  • :V

    Digital or physical hm

  • brian

    That name in the first screenshot is bugging me because it’s off center from the name thingy at the of the text box in the middle.
    And also bugging me are several grammar/punctuation/etc mistakes in the article, but that happens in most articles.

  • refrain

    I don’t think I like the gameplay much. But this looks so cute! I’ll buy it

  • icecoffemix

    I want to buy this game to support Aksys.

  • Nerroth

    I wonder if the fate of this game may help decide how many of IF/CH’s other Vita games will get brought over to the West (aside from PP, which has been announced already).

    And speaking of Fate, I hope that question-dodging at the end regarding CCC isn’t just a case of them not wanting to say no outright. It’s fair enough if a final decision hasn’t been made on it as of yet (or if they want to pre-cook much of the localization work prior to an announcement, as had happened when F/E was announced); but if they get to the point where they firmly decide not to go for it, it would be better if they said as much rather than not refer to it and leave people guessing.

    (Actually, I wonder if Imageepoch themselves have plans to do a brand new Fate/ series game on the Vita at some point…)

    • zazza345

      While I can understand that people want CCC localized, it’s actually not a very good game.

      • icecoffemix

        Not surprising seeing the first game, gameplay SUCK big time. Still gonna get CCC if it’s translated though, I’m a sucker for red Saber. :/

        • zazza345

          It’s not really an issue of gameplay, but story. Nasu expanded the script, but not in a good way. There’s a lot of padding and useless events.

          • icecoffemix

            Eh, I never care much for Fate universe actually, my favorite TM is still Tsukihime. About padding, since they are limiting (or limited to due to production budget) the whole game on such small setting it’s really inevitable.

            Gameplay still sucks though.

          • zazza345

            In this case, you get multiple events that could have be shrunk in one, voiced events that only discuss comical things, followed by unvoiced events that expand the plot.
            Also the main antagonist is…ugh. They manage to make it really annoying, more than threatening.
            Despite Nasu’s claims that the game is also for people who never played the first one, there are so many references to EXTRA that a new player may have issues.
            While the gameplay is not stellar, it’s not really the issue here (it’s also slightly harder now since it’s difficult to grind), but again you’re limited to the use of Noble Phantasm for story reasons.
            Of course, since Gilgamesh is playable, if you choose him you’ve basically unlocked God Mode….

          • icecoffemix

            Some people probably actually prefer those comical events for this kind of game really (I know I do) rather than for the already fluffy plot (like in Extra).

            Huh they limited Noble Phantasm? They certainly did not in Extra. I still think the gameplay suck, sorry (talking about Extra only, haven’t played CCC).

          • natchu96

            NP’s never really activated in any feasible scenario outside of bossfights in the first game anyway :/

            Though yeah, Gil is pretty troll with how much he’s better at everything the others do almost all at once. At least the NP is kind of epic to look at.

            *imma look down on you from the heavens as I swing down a blade made from rotating galaxies and apply 999999999 damage + DEATH status to your face!* Such overkill for the sake of rock paper scissors XD

      • Lynx

        We played the same game, right?

        The story was freaking amazing. Hell, I’d say it was better than Zero. Gil gets character development. GIL.

        Gameplay is the only thing that I can say is still really bad. Then again, I had no problem with it. I’ve played Infinite Space which is pretty much the same thing.

        • zazza345

          The first chapters feel like a chore, with all the useless back and forth (see: Rani’s final SG level for example, or Passion Lip’s events).
          Oh and in general Servants get character development. The issues are completely different.

          • Lynx

            To you then. Got it.

            I had no issues with it whatsoever.

  • Seven of The Scions

    Not gonna buy it unless it has region 3 version.
    Will they come out?

    Most of my customers kinda disappointed because they mostly using region 3, and of course they will not gonna get the DLC…

    • icecoffemix

      Is it not coming out? That’s disappointing.

      • Seven of The Scions

        Not sure, it’s been days though….

        • icecoffemix

          Ugh, this is why I hate Vita account system. Not everyone on Reg 3 speaks japan and mandarin language you know Sony. -_-

  • natchu96

    *reads third question and answer*

    Diabetes . . . well, is it the instantly fatal kind that Kanji would be proud of?

  • dark-kyon

    A advice to future buyers,if you gonna pick this game,beware with the dlc,these in the description tell what only work when you have to psvita online,yes the dlc have DRM,hoping what they change these thing after.

  • Aristides

    I’m glad this game has been so well received critically :P this game needs more exposure as it’s a competent game in the Vita library. In my case I’ve been a sucker for rougelikes since good ol Fatal Labyrinth & Dragon Crystal.

    On a separate note F/E CCC FTW!!!! F/E is my favorite PSP game ever! Day 1 purchase for me, if it gets localized ^___^. If you do this Aksys, you are gods!

  • easter

    Waiting on my American import to the great cold north of Canadastan >:(

  • http://www.gamefaqs.com/features/recognition/21421.html?type=4 Kashell

    Since no GameStop in a 100 mile radius had this, I just ordered my copy this morning. Here’s hoping for a quick delivery. Aksys is A-Okay in my book

  • ZekeFreek

    Could this finally be a truly good Compile Heart game?

    I’m obliged to buy all their crap anyway.

  • FlyingPony

    Interesting concept, like the possible funny cast, so looking forward for the game.

  • Yan Zhao

    “Dont pick Caster unless you want frustration for the 1st hour”

    Lol I picked caster and Im in frustration for the second half of the game instead. Getting one shotted by regular encounters is no fun.

  • PoweredByHentai

    “Dont pick Caster unless you want frustration for the 1st hour”

    What? Caster isn’t that frustrating.

  • Ladius

    I’m really happy they decided to localize Sorcery Saga, my LE should be delivered in the upcoming days and I plan to enjoy it when I will be done with Ys Memories of Celceta.

  • Sergio Macellaro

    Id buy boot. No qualms

  • xXDGFXx

    Kuu is adorable.

  • Servant BerserCAR

    Most Hilarious Interview of the Month best part:

    Q: So I heard you worked on Fate/Extra and I heard that Fate/Extra CCC…
    A: Yes, I like curry very much.
    ……
    Go home, man, you’re drunk.

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