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March 10th, 2010 | Hacking, MOTHER 3, Uncommon Knowledge

MOTHER 3 was released in Japan almost four years ago now… and released nowhere else. So fans came together to translate the game into English, French, Spanish, and many other languages. But I don’t think most Western fans know that there’s also been a completely separate project to translate the game into Chinese and that the project is almost nearly complete now.

Here are some screenshots:

If you know Chinese, you can check out more details here. You can also download the latest version from Dec. 25, 2009 here:

According to the site, the progress stands at this:

  • Hacking: 95% done
  • Translation: 100% done
  • Editing: 100% done
  • Art/graphics: 0% done

Having worked on the hacking and translation of the English version, my many hats go off to this team. It’s a LOT of work. And difficult work. So they rock 😀

BTW, the game is known there as “地球冒险”, which is something like “Earth Adventure”. I’m fairly certain there’ve never been any official Chinese versions of any of the games in the series, though I did come across this a while back.

I studied Chinese many years ago but it’s almost all forgotten now. I can’t even tell which kind of Chinese this translation uses. Can anyone provide more details?


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20 Comments to MOTHER 3 Chinese Translation

Carl said on Mar. 10, 2010

Is there anything about the Chinese language that would make a Chinese hack of Mother 3 more difficult–or even just different in some way–than an English one?

When you guys were finishing up the English translation, you were pretty open about sharing your work and tools with teams interested in translating the game into other languages. I’m wondering why this team went through the trouble of doing everything from scratch when the translation tools were already available. Did they not know about the English translation? Did they just want to do it themselves (a perfectly fine idea, just not how I’d have likely gone about it)?

Mato said on Mar. 10, 2010

The way the game was programmed it would be a lot easier for a Chinese translation to be made from the Japanese ROM, especially without a need for a variable width font (which was probably 75% of all the work for us). The programmers have most of the entire SJIS font set in the ROM already, and the encoding was 16-bit, so it was perfectly set up already for something like Chinese.

Using the English version as a base would’ve probably been a lot more headache, especially moving back to 16-bit and putting all the Chinese characters back into the font set somehow.

floydhead42 said on Mar. 10, 2010

Mato: from my memory, there is only one currently-used written Chinese language (aside from zhuyin fuhao, pinyin, and Xiao’erjing, which are used as teaching tools exclusively), but all of the spoken languages say the characters differently, even though they communicate the same idea. tl;dr: it’s Simplified Chinese characters.

Earthbound_X said on Mar. 10, 2010

Great job! It’s always great when others get to play an awesome game like M3.

lampi said on Mar. 10, 2010

I wonder what’s the thought process behind 硫卡 for Lucas and 弗林特 for Flint. 克劳斯 seems to be the common way to write “Claus”, strangely.

MG said on Mar. 10, 2010


Traditional Chinese is still used in places such as Taiwan; it’s just that mainland China and most other places use Simplified.

BTW, I am Chinese myself, but I learned Traditional Chinese, so I can’t read too much of this from the screenshots.

Kyoo said on Mar. 10, 2010

this makes me happy. the power of the fans. very powerful

Nooblet said on Mar. 10, 2010

Heh, kinda neat how many langauges Mother 3 is getting into.

kaialone said on Mar. 11, 2010

i think its mandarin.But its kinda hard to read for me as it looks much different when its typed and not written.Makes me wonder how far the german translation is?

Johnwalt said on Mar. 11, 2010

Mother 3 is going international! 😀

Mega said on Mar. 11, 2010

check it out!
the spanish-ish traslation is already done they are just testing the game and then they’ll post it for download
when it comes out ill post a image for you!

Chatetris said on Mar. 11, 2010

Is it mandarin?

Nitsua said on Mar. 12, 2010

I made a short gameplay video of the Chinese Mother 3 translatio. Here’s the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30QQgvWxXvU

Millhouse said on Mar. 14, 2010

This just makes me feel guilty because the German translation has pretty much stalled to a stop

Batandy said on Mar. 15, 2010

ufff and the italian traslation is … dead….

Ricardo said on Apr. 21, 2010

latin american spanish translation is also dead…

beeblebrox said on Nov. 21, 2010

Mandarin refers to a dialect of spoken Chinese.

Zhuyin, pinyin, etc. are not written languages but systems of transliteration.

The characters in the translation are simplified.

Macau, Taiwan and HK both use traditional characters, but there are many variants as to how to write particular characters.

Overseas Chinese (IE, in Singapore, the US, the UK, etc) use traditional characters.

China has/has had lots of written languages.

1) Xiandai Hanyu –> basically ‘Mandarin’, is what you find in the newspapers and in the current EB translation
2) Written Cantonese (uses different characters, is actively suppressed by the government)
3) Written dialect (when people IM they don’t use the sort of Chinese that’s being used for this translation. There are many Wikipedias in different dialects of Chinese.
4) Half/half written Cantonese (uses Mandarin characters instead of native Cantonese characters)
5) the list goes on and on… classical Chinese was used for literate communication until only very recently. There is an actively maintained classical Chinese wikipedia

yak said on Dec. 15, 2010

Hello everyone,
I’m one member of the CHINESE translate team(but I don’t join this project).

Well,I just come here say something about some question UPON.

1.”地球冒险”(Earth Adventure)was a translated name create by some company (FC period), and spread in CHINA.
Maybe this name is not so good, but be afraid of fans miss our work, we finally used that name.

2.This CHINESE version ues the simplified Chinese,and we have no plan to made other version(like the traditional Chinese).
Because the fact is ,in CHINESE mainland,the people who use the simplified Chinese, can easily read the traditional Chinese. But inversely,that would be a reading problem.
So,when CHINESE mainland translate team offer their work,they usualy make two version for kindness (ONE simplified Chinese, OTHER traditional Chinese) .
Pity, our kindness don’t obtain a fair treat——some team some work only has the traditional Chinese VERSION.

OK, so this time we choose the same way, for nothing, but some little temper.

漫游汉化组 全体成员 上。

Mato said on Dec. 15, 2010

Thanks for the information, yak! 😀

Anonymous said on Dec. 24, 2010

Is there any way to revive the Latin American Spanish translation? I’m only asking because I want to help with it.


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