Chaos Wars, a tactical RPG that had been out in Japan, had finally made its way over to our shores courtesy of third party publisher, O3 Entertainment. It also has some of the worst voice localization that I’ve recently heard. Game site, Insert Credit, points out that the voice actors are apparently relatives of O3’s CEO. You can watch the horror thanks to Youtube and witness what happens. Not only do the actors sound like they’re reading off of cue cards, but the best part happens towards the end at around the 5:15 mark when Yoichi, a smart looking fellow who looks like he’s one of those villains that is working behind the scenes to unhinge reality, starts talking. It’s not pretty.
It gets better with this clip. The first few seconds will send you rolling on the floor. “Can you moo-oove?” What?! Do you mean…move? I’m not sure what the actors were trying to do. Was it an attempt at an accent? Or perhaps it was an attempt to sound dramatic? It obviously didn’t work. The rest of this trainwreck is just as bad.
JRPG’s have finally gotten to the point where finding a title with atrocious voice acting is somewhat rarer than it was several years ago during the nineties. Namco Bandai, in particular, have come a long way in ensuring that their titles sound and look just as good in equal measure, especially with their Tales series. Square-Enix…well, you really don’t have to wonder at how good both their translation work, and voice casting, have consistently been. Unfortunately, Chaos Wars looks like one of those titles where a publisher decided to cut corners on the localization in order to kick another game out the door to generate income which only does the game, players that may have been waiting for it, and themselves, a huge disservice. At least from what I’ve read, the original Japanese is in there with English subs.
Would I rather not have the game come out on these shores because of this? Actually, yes. I would and I was surprised that Idea Factory or their representative had green-lighted this for release. Did they even hear the dub work? I have no idea. It’s just a poor way to treat a game. Now it will exist with having a Scarlet Letter of having joined a select group of terrible dubs that will live on in infamy.
If Working Designs hadn’t at least found voice actors that knew how to act (for the most part) during their heyday, I can’t imagine how Luna’s song would have sounded with this crew, or how well received their own imports would have been.