MMO NO YOU DIDN'T part II by Gunstar_Hobo - 2008-09-03 05:08:28


Talking Points - BlueGartr Forums
BlueGartr, 和英討議/Talking Points

The results are in! Forums users at Blue Gartr submitted a plethora of questions to be answered by Japanese players. The ten that were ultimately chosen ranged from player opinions on JP Only comments, the benefits/drawbacks of mixed servers, and the importance of Skillchains for todayís adventurers. Plus, will the never-ending debate of Adaman Hauberkís ambiguous hue be put to rest? Read on to find out!

For the first go at this experiment, ten questions were posted to Japanese BBS along with an explanation. There were many willing participants of all opinions, from people who welcomed the chance to play with foreigners, to those who seemedÖ less than thrilled. I tried to make sure everyone got their say, despite what they thought.

The anonymous nature of their BBS precludes me from posting any of their names or servers ó I simply donít know any of them! They say this is a strict rule so that people will react based on post content, rather than what handle posted it. Itís like Martin Luther Kingís dream come to life. This is probably why they never mention any names, especially in the first question, and simply answer yes or no, with a little explanation.

I tried to keep a mix of serious and silly questions, so I hope you are amused by their reaction to some of our NA ďin-jokes.Ē Still, thereís a lot of interesting stuff, and more than a thing or two to learn.

As a final note, occasionally respondents would use some English or fake Auto-Translate. In such cases their English is presented verbatim within

for English and
{ these marks } for Auto-Translate.

Enjoy, and thanks for reading!
Are there any famous (or infamous) foreign players for the Japanese?

* There probably are, but without asking people from every server, you canít really know if theyíre famous everywhere.
* There arenít really any ďinfamousĒ foreigners. There are, however, several 害人 (foreigners that harass people) and they can make me shy away from NA players. (Elmer Point: 害 gai means damage or harm, while the usual 外 gai means outside.)
* There are. They make good targets in Campaign.
* Not me, but the people I play with hate all NA players. They put them on the same level as Chinese RMT. Germans, on the other hand, they like.
* Any Chinese player, , but not really any specific person. There are some people we Japanese find kind of weird.
* No one I know.
* Yes.
* I donít know.
* People in can be famous, and people with bad manners can also become ďfamous.Ē
* I donít know anyone in particular.
* I donít care, so I have no idea.
* There are a few people where I play, but no one .
* Thereís a foreigner LS on myself thatís well-known for members that generally harass and disturb people. However, concerning people with a reputation for being good and likable, there isnít anyone among the foreigners or Japanese.
* Yup.
* No. Probably the language barrier keeps word of their reputation from really spreading.
* I wonder if there are any on my serverÖ but thatís not to say we donít have our share of malicious foreigners. Thereís a lot of ďHey, that guy just MPKd.Ē ĒOh, itís because heís a foreigner.Ē I get the feeling many foreigners donít consider how their actions affect the reputation of their friends. (I understand there are many good foreign players too.)
* I donít know.
* I canít give any specific names. There are some, but I usually Blacklist and ignore them.
* I donít know of any foreigners that are well-known across all servers.
* Nope. A while back spam shouters were well-known, though. I think a lot of NA got blacklisted for doing that. (Elmer Point: I wonder if heís thinking of casinos?)
* There may be people famous in some place, but Iím not really interested, so who knows.
* Thereís a HNMLS like that on my server. Youíll hear ďnot those foreigners againĒ a lot.
* I havenít heard of any infamous foreigners, but I know this guy who is well-known for always dancing around in a subligar.

Like I mentioned before, Japanese boards usually require that people remain anonymous when posting. This avoids having discussions degenerate into pointless name-calling and accusations. It seems like this mentality carried over in the question itself, and they simply treated it as a ďyesĒ or ďnoĒ question, rather than mentioning any specific people. They also focused a little more on the infamous than the positive side of fame. Due to this, the first set of answers were somewhat negative, as people tried to recall experiences that were bad enough to generate infamy.

How do you feel about English-speaking players attempting to speak Japanese. (i.e. Using limited Japanese phrases, saying ďwĒ etc.)

* It makes a really, really good impression, more than people who rely on the TAB-key or will only use their own language.
* As a JP player, I think it shows they are friendly towards Japan. They are making a strong effort to reach out.
* Itís a noble effort, but if they canít speak well itís annoying.
* It impresses me. Iím happy when they try to improve communication.
* Itís an incredibly good feeling. But sometimes seeing a random ďwĒ thrown in there is confusing.
* Itís a very good thing, I think. (However, there are many Japanese even that hate stuff like ďwĒ so be careful.)
* I think it makes a good impression on a large number of Japanese players. I wonder how it compares with people who speak broken, baby English?
* I love it. I also like people who use simple English.
* It makes me think, ďThis guyís really trying hard,Ē in a good way.
* I feel good. Happy.
* I feel a lot better towards someone like that.
* Thereís a generally distaste for ďw,Ē but people who try to speak Japanese, even poorly, make a good impression.
* I donít think anything in particular when people have a conversation in Japanese. However, I do like when people make the effort to improve communication between Japanese and English speakers.
* I really like when people learn some basic, daily phrases.
* It makes me feel good. I also try my best to chat in simple English.
* Itís a good impression. However, I donít even like it when Japanese use ďw,Ē so foreigners using it just bugs me. Thatís because it isnít just 笑い (laugh/smile), but also 嘲笑 (scoff/sneer). Usually, this ulterior meaning is the one that transfers over. I canít speak for everyone, but thatís how I see it.
* I find them charming. Itís a nice impression. Still, if I donít have a grasp on how much Japanese they really know, it can wear me out trying to compensate.
* It really makes me feel good. Seeing Japanese stuff like ďwĒ or ď^^Ē makes me feel the same way. Also, I always try my best to talk in English.
* Iíve played FFXI for 5 years and Iíve never met a person like that.
* Happy, I think. I also try my best to respond in kind.
* Happy. They seem to have a good attitude and willingness to compromise. If there Japanese is bad, I donít laugh or anything. Only a cold-hearted Japanese person would laugh at that.
* Even if itís just a few simple words, I love it. Like .
* It impresses me more than Japanese people who just brush off trying to communicate with {I donít speak any English.} or {Please use the Auto-Translate function.}
* It really puts me at ease, like I can be more comfortable around this guy.
* Iím really moved by people who try their best to speak with roman characters, and it shows a lot of initiative. However, people who use web translators often come out with weird, incomprehensible Japanese, and it would actually be easier to just talk in English. ^^;

There was an overwhelming consensus here for the support of foreigners using Japanese. Save for but a few respondents, practically everyone said they appreciated even the slightest amount of Japanese. This should come as good news for many players, as a simple ďyoroshikuĒ after joining a JP party, or ďarigatouĒ after receiving a Cure seems to break the ice and brighten their spirits. If you want to start off on the right foot, just get a few basic phrases under your belt.

I was also pleased to find their shared hatred of the ever-prevalent ďw.Ē If you can type Japanese kanji, using Ďemií in brackets (笑 produces the same effect.

Why is using /check considered rude? For English-speaking players it is a fairly innocuous action.

* In Japan, being stared at by other people is rude and ill-mannered, so it must be a cultural difference.
* In Japanese, itís saying you fix a start upon someone, so maybe that nuance doesnít transfer over. (You can make this invisible through the filters, though.)
* The Japanese phrase isnít so pleasant, and having it on by default sucks.
* For me itís like someone just took it upon themselves to rummage through my stuff.
* I think itís the fact that someone in the middle of town is just staring at you up and down, and closely examining your necklace, rings and everything else, which is creepy. The /check command technically says ďstares fixedly.Ē Japanese people feel itís a question of manners.
* I donít know about everyone individually, but the Japanese text message is just no good. ĒPlayer stares at you fixedly.Ē
* A lot of people feel the message displayed when /check is used gives an inappropriate impression.
* /check itself isnít so bad, but itís annoying when people do it over and over!
* The message that displays for /check is unpleasant. Itís Square Enixís fault.
* Staring so intently at someone is pretty poor manners. If the message was different, it probably wouldnít be a problem.
* Itís because of Square Enixís message that it has such a bad reputation.
* In my opinion, itís like some beggar coming up looking for something. Any way you look at it, itís a bad message. I filter it though, so I donít really notice. I also heard a rumor that all the constant examining can be a burden on the server.
* I donít care either way. This has been a problem amongst Japanese for a long time. Actually, there are still those who hate it, but the amount that simply donít care is increasing. Those who canít stand it claim they donít like being aware that people are looking at them. Recently, most people will just tell them to ignore it and put on the chat filter.
* Me and my friends donít care and just use it whenever. Many people think itís selfish to examine someone and then ask them for help right after.
* The Japanese translation says ďstares fixedly,Ē so itís a bad feeling, but if it was like ďPlayer A looks at Player BĒ or something it wouldnít be an issue at all.
* ďPlayer A stares fixedly at Player BĒ is bad wording in Japanese. That fixedness just implies heís intently looking for something. Itís the same reason Japanese react negatively to appearing on . Itís like observing an individualís actions. The ďstreet viewĒ service recently started in Japan also caused an uproar.
* Itís a cultural difference. Japan is concerned with shame, while Europe and America focus on crime and sin. Japanese are very concerned about how people see them. Also, the text displayed for is bad. Itís like stalker-ish. Doing it once can be bad, but 4 or 5 times is like harassment.
* In Japan, itís just rude to stare with no concern others. I think thatís the problem with the message that is displayed.
* Square Enixís emote has a bad Japanese translation I think. It feels something like .
* Looking in a bazaar or just glancing at equipment is no big deal. However, people who use it just to badmouth you, or bug you to trade with them, or other such nonsense, make it feel like harassment.
* In Japanese, it expresses rudeness. Some people consider repeated /checking to be .
* I personally donít find it to be rude, so I canít really say. Still, I know there are a lot of people who donít like it, so I never /check without saying something first.
* It implies that someone is glaring at you, so many people donít like the meaning. If you ask beforehand to view someoneís equipment, they probably wonít say no.

Basically, everyone agreed one main points: Itís poor manners because the message Square Enix chose makes it come across as such. In some cases, I still think people take it too seriously, and there were a few respondents who shared that sentiment. Asking each and every person for /check permission is pretty ridiculous, but extending that courtesy to party/alliance members isnít so bad. It seems like most Japanese people have gotten over it though, and their answers here are more explanations rather than their personal excuses.

Square Enix has mentioned many times that they are proud of their servers being unique, in the sense that many people from around the world are on the same server, instead of split up by region, and can communicate with the Auto-Translate feature.
Do you feel that this was a success or a failure? Do you think that mixing regions on each server was a failure? If you could choose, would you choose a JP only server?

* Everyone probably has a different opinion on this, so I donít know what to say. Personally, I would have been happier if they prepared both mixed servers and regional servers.
* Square Enix is alone in being proud of this. Many Japanese would select a JP server if they could, I think.
* Itís clearly a huge failure. I still want to use a segregated server. Weíre not s here for your assistance.
* I think it was just for Square Enixís self-satisfaction.
* I think Vanaídiel was ruined when foreign players came. Mixing servers was probably Square Enixís biggest failure. The Auto-Translate function is incomplete, and the necessary phrases we petition for never get added. If there were region-specific servers, I would no doubt choose a Japanese-only server.
* It was both a success and a failure probably. The Auto-Translate is experimental, but it has way too few phrases. Personally, I would probably want to switch if a Japanese-only server were available.
* Itís not that the JP-only era was free from problems, but foreign players made things comparatively much more difficult with because it was so hard to understand each other. Many people simply gave up trying. For me, being on a mixed server isnít a problem though.
* I wanted them to make Japanese servers, English servers and mixed servers.
* I think it was an interesting experiment. I donít have the chance to use English day-to-day, so it helps me study. I like talking to different people with different viewpoints.
* If possible, they should make it so you can choose between, Japanese, mixed, and US/EU servers!
* If youíre good at English itís all right, but many people would select a JP server because itís easier. I think there are many players who want to avoid getting laughed at for bad grammar and such.
* Iíve met some good people, but overall I think it failed. I would mainly like a Japanese-only server.
* Except for early/late login times, I never really play with NA parties. The language barrier is just too great. I donít mind leaving friends behind, so I would like a Japanese-only server. Mixing all these nationalities seems like a good idea, but they were too idealistic, I think.
* If itís either ďsuccessĒ or ďfailure,Ē Iíd have to say failure. However, thatís not to say many people of different languages playing together is a failure, but that Square Enix dropped the ball here. I donít mind mixed servers.
* I canít really say. We all have different values and views, and there are fun things and unpleasant things about mixed servers.
* Iíve been playing since the service launched, and at that time, Square Enix never said they were going to begin service for NA players. It would have been different it they mentioned that from the beginning. If they made JP servers, even now, I would want to move. Even if it was expensive.
* With all the people that seem to be dissatisfied, Iíd say it was a failure. However, I donít agree with people that say, ďOh, if foreigners werenít here, things would be great,Ē because then you have those Chinese RMT. Blaming foreigners is being unreasonable.
* It depends on the person. Personally, I would like separate servers. I think the consensus is there should be Japanese, mixed and English servers.
* I think it would have been better if people could choose to play with other countries or with just people from their own. Iíd choose a mixed server.
* I think Japanese are pretty narrow-minded. In contrast, NA are a little out of control. As an experiment, itís been pretty interesting. The end result wasnít as good, I think.
* Thereís a lot of dissatisfaction currently. Still, in the interest of being able to understand everyone and get things done easier, Iíd choose a Japanese-only server.
* Square Enix just did this to boost their reputation. Many Japanese see it as a failure. Actually, once the NA version went on sale, there was an explosion of Japanese player cancellations. If I could have selected a Japanese-only server from the beginning, I would have done so.
* I think playing on a mixed server has been an interesting experience for me, but I would still select a Japanese server if I could.
* Itís a great thing for people who want to learn other languages or experience other cultures. For me, Iíd choose a Japanese-only server if I could.
* I can definitely tell you it was a failure. After foreigners came in, all the good people quit. Many bad habits pervaded the Japanese community. Still, I think it would have degenerated like this either way. Itís a little late to make language-specific servers now, but I would go to Japanese-only server.
* Iím not bothered by being on a server mixed with foreigners. Thatís because I like learning about all the cultural differences. Also, it helps to have a full population no matter what time you log on.

Ouch. This reminds of that joke about pet lovers. ĒOh, your cat loves you? OK, open the door to your apartment and see what happens.Ē
ďOh, you have Japanese friends? Open a JP-only server and see what happens.Ē And off rush 99% of the Japanese population. Now, it looks pretty bad, but letís consider some things. Foreigners didnít necessarily invent bad behavior, but thousands of English-speaking players flooding into a Japanese game kind of screwed up the dynamic. It was interesting to note that apparently Square Enix did not initially alert people of this beforehand. While there are some particularly cranky respondents, I get the feeling that the language barrier bothers Japanese players more than the foreigners themselves.
When I was in middle school, I had to choose a new language for the first time: French or Spanish. I chose French to stick with my girlfriend, but didnít really care one bit for French. Now, if there was anything more powerful than a 486 back then, I might have enjoyed an online game after school. If I had the choice to just sit back and play in English, or be surrounded by Frenchmen babbling in the confounding language I just suffered through in school, Iíd think, ďScrew that, EN ONLY!Ē (No offense to Frenchies, just projecting a 12 year old mentality here).
Anyway, just trying to say the reasoning for their frustration may be more based on the language than on the actions of foreign players. You can read more about it below in the JP Only question, where Iím sure Iíll have to play apologist again.

Have you learned anything about the NA culture that you didnít know before? Perhaps a polite/impolite gesture/phrase that seemed innocent to you? (e.g. we see /check as innocent, and JP find it rude)

* Personally, Iíve done foreign study and home-stays, so I knew a lot going in. Recently, thereís been a lot of foreign students and workers coming into the country, so I think cultural awareness is really growing.
* After the NA players came in, one weird thing that changed was no more lotting.
* When I played Ultima Online on an NA server, I didnít hate communicating with NA players.
* Nothing culturally, but I thinking my basic English skills have really improved.
* NA donít act like gentlemen. They are selfish, rude and perverts. I have a female character and have had to call GMs about sexual harassment many times. They demand PLs and Raises and Teleports, and if you donít answer they start cursing you out. They irresponsibly camp on top of other parties. Also, people who speak English but put up the ďJĒ tag disgust me.
* When asking someone for something, Japanese try to consider the other personís situation, while NA players think more of there own needs. Also, if they get turned down, they get very persistent and demanding.
* They build parties differently than Iíd expect.
* I have many English-speaking friends, so I think itís more of a person-by-person problem. I donít like foreigners that are selfish, and itís rude to simply thrust your requests upon someone without prefacing them politely.
* The way they switch people in and out of parties. (Disbanding quickly is so annoying). Also, the lot rules.
* Iíve only just become familiar with NA through FFXI, so I canít answer.
* I donít know. I would like to know what they find rude.
* I was surprised at all the begging.
* The time difference. Also I got good at making basic English conversation.
* Personally, Iíve had fun learning stuff like ďWelcome backĒ is and ďthank you,Ē which has improved my English. Not to mention a fair amount of slangÖ
* I had never seen English chat, so it was good to see that.
* There seems to be many people who think they can get anything with money. For example, I was in Windurst and I told this guy my Home Point was somewhere else, so I couldnít teleport him. He offered money, but I refused, and he got really persistent. He told me I should just change my Home Point. What nerveÖ
* Thereís no equivalent to ďyoroshiku onegaishimasuĒ to greet someone at the beginning of a party! I was also surprised when seeing and then . So is supposed to express ďThank you for waiting for meĒ in that case?
* I learned some English shorthand, like and . Also some culture. Unfortunately, I ended up with more of a negative image than a positive one.
* There are parties when people afk for long periods of time, members switch in and out constantly, or perhaps the party just disbands before they assemble.
* Many things, but nothing really useful outside of the game. If anything, I understand just how big a wall there is between our different languages and cultures.
* Chat abbreviations.
* I never knew about those sideways emoticons. The first time I saw it, I thought it was a typo.
* I get the feeling that Japanese players go for long parties that steadily build experience points, while parties focus on getting the most experience points out of a single battle, no matter how long it takes.

Some moreÖ frank responses, especially that one near the top that makes me wonder if FFXIFlux is studying abroad right now. The respondent that mentioned the lack of proper party greetings made an interesting point though. In Japanese, there are basic phrases that go before and after requests and activities. In some cases we have equivalents, like ďExcuse me, butĒ or ďSorry to bother you.Ē In others, we donít. We could say, ďWelcome to the party!Ē but most people just give a ďheyĒ or ďsupĒ when adding new members.
In the same vein, when English-speaking shout, itís usually direct and to the point. Japanese always apologize for their shout, sometimes before and after. Neither way is necessarily ďwrong,Ē but from each side, the other sideís way can appear wrong.

Do you ever utilize English websites such as BlueGartr, FFXIAH, etc for foreigner research and opinions? Do the Japanese have a large end-game community forum, similar to foreign players using BlueGartr?

* I donít really go to any foreign sites. I think there may be some high-level forums.
* I donít use any foreign sites, personally. If there are any high-level boardsÖ I donít know them.
* I get enough from Japanese boards, so I donít use foreign ones. We have some boards devoted to battle strategies.
* Iíve looked at several times, but basically I donít use any.
* I donít really view any foreign sites, but now that you mention it, isnít a Japanese site? We do have specific boards for high-level stuff, jobs and battle strategies.
* Iíve looked at . As for our forums, we donít have ones aimed at high-level players so much as ones that only high-level players still post on.
* I donít. I get everything I need already.
* I use . Besides that, Iíve never been shown another place to visit.
* Iím pretty much fine with just Japanese boards. As for high-level sitesÖ I would say use either here or 2chanís NetGames board.
* I sometimes use .
* I donít know English, so I donít use any. We have them here too in Japan.
* No, I get all the info I want to know from Japanese sites. For high-level forums, there is NetGames or here.
* (I donít use it now) . Like me, many Japanese used to use , but with the recent rise in hacking, they have mostly stopped. I use a lot, but I donít know of any other Japanese who do. I use it because 1) It has a lot more detailed information than Japanese sites, 2) Itís more objective than Japanese sites. I donít know about high-level boards, but there are some forums that discuss battle strategies.
* With all the account hacking going on, I have no interest in viewing foreign sites.
* Nope, I have no idea what is.
* Iíve been using since back when they only displayed in English. Many Japanese felt it was useful, but some were upset with its privacy violations. When it started displaying Japanese, everyone was extremely grateful. It was such a nice thing for the site to do. Still, there are some who still demand the site be shut down because you can sneak a peek at the activities of others. We donít have high-level sites, but rather sites for specific subjects regarding the game.
* I use a lot. I donít know about any other sites besides that one. For a high-level site, do you mean one with lots of activity, or one that deals with hunting HNM? For the former, check out NetGames I guessÖ the latter would be here.
* Previously, I used . Now, because of all the hacking, I donít anymore. There are boards for each server, but I think NetGames functions as a high-level forum.
* Yes, there are.
* . After the account hacking problem I stopped using it.
* Nope, because I donít understand English.
* I donít use any. I just use here and whatever other sites people recommend to me.
* I used for a period of time, but recently I donít. I donít know of any others.
* I donít. Iím satisfied with what I use now.
* I use the , but community sites are too hard to read, so I donít use those.

I liked this question because I didnít have to feel horrible after reading the answers. It seems like FFXIAH is a clear favorite, most likely for the sheer utility of the site. Having the whole database in Japanese now doesnít hurt either. What does hurt though, apparently, is the hacking issue. It was pretty clear that account hacking has caused a scare, and any unfamiliar sites have been scratched off the Japanese favorite lists.

Is the Adaman Hauberk blue or purple? This debate has raged across NA forums since the dawn of time.

* I donít think thereís anything to debate here, butÖ I guess it depends on how you look at it and if you have colorblindness or not.
* In my eyes, it looks to be ultramarine. However, everyone could have their own opinion so itís pointless to debate.
* What color? Looks blue to meÖ
* It depends on the specific hue one sees, but I think itís blue.
* Grey. Blue is like Nobleís Tunic. Purple is like Dragoon AF. I only see grey for Adaman Hauberk.
* Ultramarine.
* I can see why some would say purple, but really, Adaman Hauberk is blue. lol
* I see a strong blue color.
* It looks blue.
* Dark blue or blue. Thereís no purple there.
* I think itís a navy blue.
* Itís hard to express its exact color, but if itís between blue and purple, I say blue. Personally, I would specify it as ultramarine.
* I think itís ultramarine. .
* I canít definitively say its color since it changes based on the color settings of your T.V., but I would go with ultramarine.
* Purple.
* Navy blue (some bluish color). I wouldnít think for a second that itís purple.
* In Japan thereís no such debate about the color of Adaman Hauberk, so Iíd guess itís some sort of joke. Itís funny the things foreigners focus on (meaning Iím really interested in it). I donít know about them, but most Japanese would classify Adaman Hauberk as being blue. Still, depending on the lighting, the color can subtly change so itís tough to define it with a single word. Looking at a picture of Adaman Hauberk, I can see how some debate would stem from such a color. lol
* I think itís ultramarine.
* Purple.
* A strong blue. I figure individual differences like monitor settings, room lighting and such started this nonsense. Itís the color of Adaman, isnít it?
* Blue. To be more specific, ultramarine. It has a little purple mixed in, but really is a deep, ocean blue. Iíve never seen this discussed amongst Japanese. It can depend on the person, but I doubt there are many Japanese who would say its purple.
* Ultramarine. Itís a type of blue.
* Iíd have to say itís a bluish-purple. Between blue or purple, I think itís closer to blue.
* If itís blue or purple, then I say bluish-purple. A blue with some purple in it.
* Indigo. It looks like indigo-colored dye, and I think that color describes this perfectly.

18 blues, (with 8 specifically for ultramarine), 2 purples, 2 on the fence, an indigo, and 1Ö grey? You know, I always agreed with that one guy who pointed out that Adaman Hauberk is probably the color of Adaman ó blue! Still, itís kind of a joke question, and something that was fun to share with them. When you can share in the ridiculousness of a debate like this, it gives you something to laugh at together. I wonder how they feel about Warcry meritsÖ

What is your main reason behind having ďJP OnlyĒ or ďEnglish No ThanksĒ in your search comment? Is it because you prefer to speak in Japanese, or is it a problem with the way foreigners act?

* I want to speak in JapaneseÖ I want to play with Japanese playersÖ I donít like their play styleÖ etc etc, there can be a bunch of reasons.
* I want to play in a language I can understand. Other reasons include not being able to get my feelings across, not being familiar with their battle strategies, and the general disarray the language gap causes.
* Because I donít like foreigners. They , they logout on a whim, and they donít listen to battle advice.
* It depends on the person, but itís mostly due to the following reasons: Inability to communicate battle plans or having a previous bad experience in a party with foreigners.
* Many people wonít join a party with foreigners because they wonít understand the specifics of where to camp and how to perform within the party. Japanese are required to learn English, and many of them can speak enough to accomplish this, but they log in to relax and have fun, not struggle with a language theyíre no good at. Most Japanese understand that the TAB-key phrase {I donít speak any English.} really means, ďI speak English, but I canít get all the little details and nuances, so I wonít speak it.Ē Also, when service began, people joined this under the impression it would be Japanese-only. So when Square Enix added in English users and blindsided us with English and the TAB-keyÖ a lot of people strongly felt they had been tricked. I donít like being the only one not able to express myself in a party that doesnít speak Japanese.
* The biggest reason for me is not being able to alert people in case of an emergency. In case of a link, thereís no way to quickly say, ďRDM sleep that mob and letís take down this one first.Ē
* If youíre asking for a reason, itís because I donít like the way foreigners act.
* Thereís a variety of reasons, like not knowing the language, or having had a bad experience.
* In my case, itís because I want to speak in Japanese.
* Like most people have said, itís either ďI canít understand details,Ē or ďI had a bad experience.Ē For me, itís the latter. Japanese might not understand English fully, but we can tell when people throw around racist and sexist talk.
* English is complex. I understand it, but thereís so much I canít say. I want to have smooth communication with my party, but I also want to become friendlier with foreign players.
* I think more than in the interest of mutual understanding, there are many Japanese who have had bad experiences with mean players. Besides that, two big reasons are probably: ďIím playing to have fun, not struggle,Ē and ďI want to get the most out of my monthly fee.Ē
* Thereís a difference in party structure and flow. Japanese like to go for 3 or more hours, while parties often break quickly. When discussing camp, or how to deal with links in emergency situations, having two different languages just makes things difficult. Although some people genuinely canít understand English, I think others use it as an excuse to avoid troubling situations.
* The cultural and language differences are huge. English ability is not something the Japanese can be proud of. Regarding the language wall, as a nation of people who strive for perfection, thereís a feeling of ďIf I canít say it perfectly, I wonít say it,Ē which I think is dumb. As for the cultural wall, I think the biggest issue is play style. You often have people call replacements and leave, using a ďrevolver styleĒ (a term I just made up myself) party play, which Japanese feel is disrespectful to other party members. Also, there are instances where the replacement arrives only to have the party disband without killing a single monster. This just leaves a bad impression of foreigner parties. Actually, there are quite a few Japanese who like the ďrevolver styleĒ parties. However, in Japanese parties they very rarely ever use it.
* Iíve come to dislike foreigners based on the people Iíve met. Itís difficult to have a conversation, parties arenít stableÖ but most others just simply donít understand enough English.
* I like when try to chat a little in Japanese, but I think the vast majority only use English. They can also be very self-centered, and I donít like that.
* I donít have the language ability to communicate well, and the cultural differences between foreigners, who act on their personal whims, and Japanese, who are considerate for their fellow players, just bugs me and makes me not want to join any parties! Thatís what Iím expressing with JP only.
* In my case, itís 70% wanting to be able to talk, and 30% bad past experiences that make me put up JP only. Itís tough to communicate detailed information or coordinate during emergencies. Thereís also the cultural differences, where foreigners conduct themselves in ways that Japanese people do not like. As a personal example, I hate when foreigners camp on top of me. Japanese players search and ask first, but it seems many foreigners just plop down on top of you and try to break up your party.
* I think itís because of the communication issue. Our languages and ways of thinking are different, and thatís hard to reconcile.
* If you want to know, many Japanese donít use to separate the races. I think itís like how you find it difficult to understand why we donít like . Iíll let other people elaborate more on this.
* Thereís one of two reasons. They are either prejudiced, or they donít want to deal with the aggravation. For me, when doing an important mission or something, I try to avoid foreigner parties. Often times we all just end up leveling down.
* I donít like the way foreigners act. Japanese see many English-speakers as selfish and rude. Of course, this is because our cultures and ways of thinking are different. So instead of getting into quarrels, I just avoid the situation altogether.
* Thereís a strong majority that just want to speak in Japanese.
* Thereís many reasons that I think stem from Japanese players and foreign players having different values and play styles. Thereís also people who donít want to join based on a bad experience they had.
* Itís self-defense. The best tank I ever partied with was a foreigner. Also, I speak pretty good English. But if Iím doing something where the stakes are high, Iíll put up .
* I donít like it when I canít communicate effectively. There are many Japanese who can have an English conversation, but just canít keep up with all the reading and writing. I think this is the fault of the Japanese education system, and not players. In level-up parties, I can usually work well with foreigners. If Iím doing a or a mission, itís just too hard to communicate all the details, and Iíd rather party with Japanese players.

I thought this section would come out much worse. There were a few ďgaijin-hatersĒ snuck in there, but overall it seems people would rather just play the game than run laps to the dictionary. Like my example before, I can certainly see why people would want to simply play in their own language.

Another interesting thing that came up again was that Square Enix didnít initially tell people about its plans for an NA release. I started on Gilgamesh back in January 2005, and the server gradually became the de facto home for French players. They didnít exactly receive a warm welcome when NA players caught on to that. I wonder how this survey would look if SE provided EN, JP and mixed servers. I wonder if a question about JP Only would even existÖ

They really seem to harp on us for rudeness, and while there certainly are a fair amount of NA/EU players that need their monitors to explode in their faces, I think they are being a little harsh. Iíve been in Japan a long time, and there are some rude-ass people here. You can see Japanese all the time being rude to each other. I think itís just that this concept of politeness is just hammered in from an early age. Use this word for someone better than you, use that word for someone worse than youÖ say please, thank you, bow this many degrees downwardÖ In America we have a much more subjective idea of whatís ďpoliteĒ that varies based on situation. Japanese have a much more collectively defined idea of politeness, so if something doesnít match, itís considered rude.

Do JP players still use Skillchain+Magic Burst in their parties or do they TP burn like most NA/EU players do? Do you miss the SC/MB days?

* When discussing the battle plan, camp, enemy type/strength and such go into whether we use SC/MB or not.
* Battle tactics can change based on level and enemy, but I donít so much Magic Bursting recently.
* has gone out of use in Japan too, but it seems like players have a lot of trigger-happy Black Mages.
* Itís decided based on party makeup and the enemy. There are times where you use Magic Bursts and times when you donít.
* Skillchain and are almost no used at all anymore, but there are some Samurai that are skilled enough to make them without it having to be planned out.
* My BLM is only 40, so I donít , but sometimes people just Skillchain on a whim. For level monsters they are used more oftenÖ or should be.
* I havenít entered a level-up in almost 2 years, but I love skillchain and . The current trend of play is kind of sad.
* and skillchains have gone out of style, but there are still some camps where BLM is pretty strong.
* Nowadays, Black Mages normally donít even get invited to parties. People just make Black Mage-only parties.
* Theyíre not really done in level-up parties or merit parties. It really depends on the content, BCNM, and such.
* Skillchains and are pretty old-fashioned, Iíd say. Personally, Iíd like to see have meaning once again.
* If thereís a Black Mage in the , I will make it so they can . It helps the party work together as a machine.
* Itís used on certain enemies. For example, on a powerful or some s. In general, level-up parties donít utilize them.
* Only in special situations, or certain s or s, or BLM-only / SMN-only level-up parties. In general, itís not used. Most parties just ad-lib skillchains as they go along rather than set them up.
* There are times when people off of people who just Skillchain on the fly. Besides that, they are barely used.
* Even in Japan, Skillchain and parties have gone out of style. Iíd say 95% of parties donít decide on a Skillchain before starting. The other 5% are low-level parties using .
* There are times when they are used depending on level and the enemy, but itís nothing like the old days. Thinking back, people used to use them all the time. Thereís a fair amount of people who miss that era.
* Outside of parties with friends, I barely ever use them. Nobody really prepares Skillchains. Personally, I miss the days when people would Skillchain and .
* This is just me talking, but I absolutely love . I think after Aht Urghan, burn parties became all the rage, and FFXI became pretty boring.
* Nostalgic people still want to do them. I think theyíre fun to set up. lol
* I think people who use Skillchains and make good parties. Itís fun! I make burn parties too.
* I think most people just ad-lib Skillchains and now. If thereís a SAM or DRK people do them sometimes. I was in a party as WHM the other day, and I got to Holy off Light Skillchains. That made me really happy. lol
* I was feeling nostalgic, and since I was leader, I had my party set up a Skillchain and . Everyone was pretty pleased with the results. Still, this way of thinking is almost tantamount to heresy nowadays.
* Getting the timing down for Skillchains and just isnít worth it anymore. That, and there are so many BLM parties.

This pretty much mirrors how we feel. Skillchains and Magic Bursts just arenít efficient enough to bother with, but somewhere, deep down, we wish they were. I mean, how cool is it to set up a chain of special attacks that culminates in a bonus effect that opens the door for an assault of magic? Of course, doing it 50 thousand times as you grind off crabs sort of dulls that effect.
Still, it was a unique part of Final Fantasy XI, and added to the party dynamic. Now, the most efficient way to party is to just deck yourself off and beat the holy hell out of the enemy until the pixels physically crumble from the punishment. It feels like the Final Fantasy series has always suffered from this issue. I canít remember a single one where you couldnít just barrel through enemies with beefy bruisers, forgoing MP management and the hassle of spells. I always conserved magic for boss fights, and it sounds like thatís the general plan in FFXI as well.

Do you wear certain earrings or rings in certain slots? For example, Suppanomimi on ear 1, CoP ring on ring 2.

* I donít really understand this question, but if youíre talking about rare and powerful equipment, all I can say is that itís up to the individual where they want to put it.
* Lots of people are concerned with what equipment they have, but I donít think anyone cares where they wear it.
* I pay no attention to that.
* I donít think thereís really anyone who pays attention to what slot they use. I know I donít.
* Choosing which earrings or rings to wear is important, with the limited number of slots. Choosing which slot to put them in is something I donít think about.
* My equipment depends on my level and goals. I have battle gear and town gear.
* So I guess this question is asking if we are concerned about which of the two slots we put equipment in? I put mission rewards in the left slot (I guess thatís ?).
* I donít know the point of this question, but Iím sure there are some who think about this stuff, but really itís up to them where they want to put it.
* I donít.
* I make sure to keep the slot consistent throughout my gear-swap macros, but I donít pick either slot in particular.
* I basically just fill in every slot when I equip myself. I donít have any special order.
* There doesnít seem to be any reason to do that. Still, if the question includes other items with special meaning, I do have a cherished Longsword +1. Itís my favorite sword that Iíve had for years, and I keep it equipped on my mannequin.
* I think the majority of players donít pay attention to this, but I totally do. Specifically, this is what I always put on: Ear1: Antivenom Earring, Abyssal Earring, Singing Earring, Fowling Earring; Ear2: Assault Earring, Moldavite Earring, Wind Earring; Ring1: Molionesís Ring, Jelly Ring; Ring2: Woodsman Ring, Triumph Ring.
* Equipment keeps changing as you level, so I think a lot of people donít really notice these things. But, if people stopped to think about it, they might be like, ďHey, why did I put this ring on the left and this earring on the right?Ē
* I donít think about it.
* Iíve never thought about this. Since this was chosen as one of 10 questions, are you saying this is something of great importance to players? If Japanese players were asking foreigners questions, this would absolutely not be one of them.
* Hmm, sounds like the kind of thing you do with an engagement ring. In that case, I donít think anyone really pays attention to this. People just put on what is necessary for their level.
* I donít think about it.
* No.
* I do. Why do you ask?
* In town I often wear equipment my friend has inscribed, but I donít put it in any particular slot.
* In my case, I do put earrings in certain slots depending on the job for my macros. But there probably arenít many people who do this.
* Sometimes things I usually put in the right slot just looks weird in the left slot. Still, I never really took the time to choose one or the other from the beginning.
* I donít have a special order. I just make sure all my macros keep things in the same slots. ^_^;

I kind of expected this, but Japanese take these joke questions pretty seriously. Being the first time weíve done this though, it seems natural it would come across that way. It was nice to see a bunch of people caught on though, especially that one OCD case.

Additional Comments

For a first go at this, I think it went pretty well. Despite some of the negative sentiment, there was a very positive reaction for the experiment itself. Plus, the variety of opinions shows we are getting the full deal, and not just some sugar-coated answers from a small group of people. Itís strange how annoyed they can appear to be, yet be so eager to bridge the gap at the same time. Besides the obvious grouches, most posters were very receptive and eager to participate. I only wish I had the time to include more answers.

Here is some extra material that wasnít part of any particular answer. Some people requested that these thought were added, and they are just general concerns or after-thoughts various posters had.

* Melees, please come to merit parties as sub-NIN, not sub-SAM. This is something I really want to understand. It makes me feel bad for healers. Using sub-NIN will make you super efficient. Your death-rate will go way down. Using Utsusemi will save your healers a lot of . Japanese donít see as something that should be sacrificed to make you stronger.
* Many Japanese are poor at English conversation not because they canít make sentences, but because they donít know what to say to express themselves. If someone badmouths them in a party, they know they have no way to respond. Then they just get more frustrated, and start to dislike foreign players altogether.
* , most Japanese people know English to understand basic chat, and they can tell when people are badmouthing them or using sexual language, so people should really stop that. lol Many people just donít have enough confidence in their spelling or grammar to say anything.
* This is my opinion on : First, many players are foul-mouthed and often selfish and sarcastic (). However, there are good people that donít bully others. After players joined the game, activity really took off, I think. Things like using other peopleís accounts, having and ing are basically a given, and I think it shows a lack of morals. As for as a , I think they are too concerned with having their character names in their , whereas will always post . If you display names, it just degenerates into personal attacks.
* The day service began for foreigners, Sarutabaruta was just littered with corpses. I would throw a Cure and say something nice, like, ďYou can do it!Ē and they would respond with foul language like or or and such. After that, I just stopped giving out Cures and sort of avoided foreigners. I always wanted to know why North American players would act it such a way. Honestly, people who study a little Japanese to speak with us are the most popular.

After collecting a lot of answers, I did step up to the plate to defend us foreigners. While some of the questions invited negativity, I thought they were being somewhat unfair. It is the Internet, and anonymous no less, so you canít really judge how even the rudest of respondents carry themselves in-game.
I explained to them that a lot of concerns they had were ones we hold ourselves. Nobody likes people that camp on top of other parties. Stealing, drama and personal feuds are a constant problem. Still, thereís a lot of adventurers that play the game, have fun, and donít bother other people, and itís those adventurers that genuinely want to know more about those they share their game with.
I think past the bad experiences, and apparently poor handling of integration, Japanese people feel the same way. I mean, everyone would rather reach an understanding with their fellow players rather than be constantly at odds with them, right? Well, here are some more comments they made afterwards.

* I donít hate , there are lots of interesting people among them. I just hate English.
* Japanese people donít just hate players, they dislike players with poor manners. Also, Japanese people hate when people throw around the word JAP, even if itís not used maliciously.
* Thanks for your hard work. Iím on a server with a high population of foreigners. Iím not that good, but I like to translate in mixed parties of English or French players. I really hope this survey fosters some understand between good foreign players and Japanese. I think there are many cases where we really do dislike the same kinds of inappropriate conduct. For example, I hate when people just up and call a replacement for themselves without saying anything. They donít consider the time difference, and that maybe people want to disband, disappointing the replacement. Also, sometimes theyíll do stuff like a WHM will call a RNG for their replacement. Since we canít split up the servers now, I think the best thing to do is reach understanding one voice at a time. I really respect what the OP is doing here. Donít wear yourself out.
* I donít hate all foreigners. I think lots of people just suck at English and refuse to respond. Next time, Iíd like to know what courtesy we could extend to to make them happy.
* I think this is an interesting experiment, so keep up the good work. If you can, I want to know their reaction.

So if you call them on their prejudice, Japanese will be nice. No, waitÖ weíre all good people on the inside. Yeah, thatís a better lesson. Seriously though, there were lots of other little, tiny comments like ďOoh, sounds fun!Ē or ďI want to try this!Ē and so on. There literally wasnít a single post in opposition of this, which says something, I guess.
I had a lot of fun doing this, and translating all these opinions was just loads of fun, not to mention enlightening, due to their content. I would love the chance to try this again with different questions and different communities. I hope you enjoyed reading this, and that you learned something new in the process. Feel free to post any questions/comments here or send me a mail at
Thanks to everyone who submitted questions and supported me during this trial run!

Edit: I actually just noticed this post after completed this entire thread. It was put up only minutes before I wrapped up work on the survey. Sometimes I read it and get confused, but sometimes I read it and feel it exemplifies what this survey has tried to accomplish. This poster did his best to express his opinion in both Japanese and English, and it was one that tried to objectively view both sides of the issue, and logically explain why some of these problems between us exist.
Iíll post the comment here in its entirety. This was not translated by me, but is the posterís own words.
one for allが大好きだけど、all for one(me)がきらい。


This is just my opinionÖ
Most of Japanese adapt themselves to mass, even if they are not happy to do so,
and consider it as a virtue.
It is really important for them not to make somebody unpleasant.
SoÖ Japanese are easy to miss to make themselves happy.
They have very poor means for self-assertiveness.
And, they hate who doesnít adopt oneself to mass.
Japanese loves ďOne for allĒ but hates ďAll for one(me)Ē

Most of NAs are very self-assertive.
May be, they think JP are also self-assertive same as them,
and may believe JP can say ďNoĒ if they donít want.
But most of Japanese feels it is an offense to say ďNoĒ without specific(physical) reason.
They feel it is selfish behavior to say ďI donít like to do itĒ.
It is one of the reason that they are stressed when they got tell from NA.
They worry to be demanded.


I really like the worldwide servers and think SE did a pretty impressive job with the translator. (Unlike some piece-of-shit games that make it difficult to play with Denmark's sexiest Hunter. I mean FFS Blizzard get it together)

Last week I got a Japanese WAR/NIN to come duo with my Beastmaster in Western Altepa Desert. Just some deadly internet dragon killers chillaxin online killing some spiders eatin some kebabs and getting fat exp. Good times. Until I get us killed because I'm a careless North American. Charm doesn't last very long on some tough mobs. Live and learn. hahahaha

Tomorrow I'm going to hit level 50 on White Mage and to get your level cap up higher you have to do a quest every 5 levels and now every time I think about it or look up info on the quests I think about that bizzare shit from the FAR EAST Creepy Uncle posted.


And if I haven't given you folks enough reasons to talk shit about me: I've listened to almost every episode of this show

( 5 Comments )   Permanent link to this post
MMO NO YOU DIDN'T part I by Gunstar_Hobo - 2008-08-18 06:28:44
Originally posted by SocialParasite
How can you stand to play that abomination of a game?

Pretty big story in the gaming media over the weekend about this abomination of a game I play.

News has spread of a grueling new enemy encounter in Final Fantasy XI. The Notorious Monster (NM) Pandemonium Warden is one of the strongest opponents players can face in the game. But it seems Square-Enix may have raised the bar too high, given the extremes to which players must go to defeat Pandemonium Warden.

A linkshell (guild) called Beyond the Limitation recently faced off against Pandemonium Warden over an 18 hour period, but the NM was still going strong. The NM shapeshifts into multiple forms, making it even more of a challenge to defeat; Beyond the Limitations fought Pandemonium Warden through twenty of his possible forms, some of which took hours to kill. Pet Food Alpha, a Final Fantasy XI community site, quotes a member of Beyond the Limitation stating: "People were passing out and getting physically ill. We decided to end it before we risked turning into a horrible new story about how video games ruin people's lives."

There is the argument that the particular endgame encounter is geared towards the most hardcore linkshells in FFXI, but it stands to reason that a linkshell powerful and knowledgeable enough to reach that point would take on Pandemonium Warden with optimal efficiency. A member of Beyond the Limitation, going by the name Rukenshin, has posted a definitive account of the event and specifically addresses the publicity drawn to their encounter, which is well worth a read.

What's your take on this? How long should it take for your guild or linkshell to collectively bring down a single enemy in Final Fantasy XI, or any MMO for that matter?


Now I bet some you can get all up in here posting "Man that ain't shit, back in the day on EQ we used to...etc." And that's cool. Go for gold.

And here's a comment from that story...

Bill said...

The FFXI dev team has always been sadistic and hated the players. They refuse to answer the most basic questions about how anything works, and when they do let some hint slip out, it's so cryptic nobody understands it. Their interviews with Japanese media are long and in-depth, while their interviews with North American media are full of "I don't know" and "Figure that out for yourself". When you can't play 80 hours per week, it's hard to figure out moon phase effects or many other things that they outright refuse to explain or discuss.

The support system is built around annoying players. The GMs tell you to call the support center for help, the support center tells you to send email, and if the email actually gets read, the reply is either "the game is working as intended" or that you need to call or talk to a GM, starting the whole process over again. You might get really lucky and they'll tell you to speak to a supervisor, but there has never been one available. Just one more cockblock time sink from Square-Enix, it's just like playing ffxi.

After you spend 18-24 hours trying to kill this boss the chances of it dropping anything useful or wanted is .00001%. You're more likely to get a useless crystal or nothing at all. You'll need to fight this 30 or more times to get the item you want. Making the total time to fight warden to get anything at least 540 hours, not including time to farm the pop requirements.

The only reason people still care about old content is that the items from that content hardly ever drop. You could be doing the same raids for years and not see anything you could use. People think warden or AV are horrible because they take 18 hours. The cumulative time wasted on any single raid event (sky, dynamis, salvage, Einjerhar, etc) with players getting nothing out of it makes warden look easy.

FFXI isn't for the hard core, it's for the brain damaged. You can't attempt mobs like warden unless you find 18 or more of the best players with the best gear. Any single one of them sneezes or needs a 5 minute break and weeks of work getting the pop items is ruined. The casual player that doesn't have the ability to glue themselves in front of their computer for 8 hours every day or find 18 of the best players to hang out with, has little chance to see warden let alone fight him. I guess this is what casual player means to Square-Enix, because they said the Zeni NM system was for the casual player. Just like they said ToAU would have mid level and solo content.

Even if you want to grind xp, you're forced to deal with 200 players that are "JP PARTY ONLY". leaving you with 8 other NA or EU players to xp with, and their jobs don't work well with yours, making xp next to impossible. Those 300 players only exist on one overcrowded server. Other servers have 12 "JP PARTY ONLY" looking for exp, and no other NA or EU players.

The dev team forces users to bend over, without any lube, because it makes them feel better about designing a horribly sadistic and mind numbing grind of a game.

It's not going to improve. Square-Enix does not care about the players or their opinions, they've had 4+ years to do anything and all we got were more sadistic nms, low drop rates, and interviews with SageSundi saying "I don't know". The global producer for the game doesn't even know how things work. I bet Sundi doesn't even know what warden is. The only answer they'll give about warden will be "We'll investigate the issue".

There are better games out there, that aren't designed by sadists.

The only thing I disagree with really is that it's hard to find players on your server to do stuff with. It really isn't.

Here's me and a couple of my best friends from the real world hanging out in the fantasy world having nerd boners over our new hats we got from using a gold world pass.

More to come.
( 21 Comments )   Permanent link to this post
Drunken half-assed suicide attempt by Gunstar_Hobo - 2007-03-18 10:34:33

So I just got in from a smoking cruise with ze German and Geoffoshua. While we were out I was driving to the gas station when I saw something in the road ahead. It appeared to be someone walking in my lane towards my car. I slowed down and stopped and he stumbled up to the window. He appeared to have been partaking heavily in the holiday's festivities and the following exchange took place:

Dude: I live down the street.

Dude: My wife just left me and I was hoping you would hit me with your car.

Me: Well I can't really do that but there's some cars coming in the other lane if you'd like to try again.

Dude: You're a good man.

He continued down the street in my lane and less than 5 seconds later a cop passed me and turned his lights on. They drove off presumably to the dude's house to sort things out.

An exciting night in my tiny town.

In other news, I just ate this.
( 14 Comments )   Permanent link to this post

Showing 1 - 3 of 3